This year World Rabies Day will take place on 28 September 2014.
World Rabies Day was created by the Global Alliance for Rabies Control and their mission is to raise awareness about the impact of human and animal rabies, how easy it is to prevent and how to eliminate the main global sources.
Since the inaugural campaign in 2007, World Rabies Day has grown year on year, with hundreds of thousands of people participating in events on or around September 28.
Those wishing to know more about World Rabies Day or to become more involved can visit the Global Alliance for Rabies Control website for further information.
World Rabies Day serves as a reminder to healthcare professionals that rabies risk is a topic that should be discussed in many travel consultations. Important points to discuss with travellers visiting endemic countries include:
- Raise awareness of potential rabies risk.
- How to reduce risk (avoid animal contact).
- Pre-exposure prophylaxis and PEP availability.
- First-aid treatment of an animal bite/scratch/lick.
- Seeking medical attention.
- Post-exposure prophylaxis.
Note: All travellers should be aware that bats in any country are a potential source of rabies virus, even in countries declared 'rabies free' by WHO classification. Bats should not be handled by those unqualified to do so. Any contact with bats should be reported particularly if contact may have occurred at night while asleep; bat bites can go undetected.