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Rabies (Human) in South Africa

26 Aug 2013

A total of seven human rabies cases has been confirmed in South Africa this year (2013) to date. These cases were reported from Free State (n=2), KwaZulu-Natal (n=1), Mpumalanga (n=1) and Limpopo (n=3) provinces.

Two of the three cases from Limpopo Province were confirmed in the past month. The first case, a 38-year-old male from Elim (Makhado) was bitten on the leg by his own dog in April 2013.

The second case is a 38-year-old male from Mopani District who was bitten by a dog two months before the onset of his illness.

Advice for Travellers

Travellers to South Africa should be aware of the rabies risk and are advised to avoid all contact with animals and dogs in particular. All animal bites should be reported and assessed carefully. Rabies pre-exposure vaccine is available for those considered to be at risk.