Rabies claims 4 in Hurungwe

An outbreak of rabies has claimed four lives in Hurungwe district, NewsDay has established. By Nhau Mangirazi

Source: Rabies claims 4 in Hurungwe – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 12, 2016

Mashonaland West acting provincial medical director Justice Mudavanhu confirmed that one person died in Karoi town, while three of the deaths were recorded at Chidamoyo Hospital, 75 kilometres away.

“The woman who passed on in Karoi was already symptomatic after spending a few days at home without medication and it was too late for health officials to save her life,” Mudavanhu told NewsDay Weekender recently.

He said one young boy, suspected to have contracted the disease, was also battling for his life at Karoi Hospital.

“We have a young boy, son to the deceased who is suspected to been infected, but clinically has no signs. We are closely monitoring his condition and we have since advised and recommended vaccination,” Mudavanhu said.

Rabies is an infectious viral disease that is almost always fatal following the onset of clinical signs.

According to the World Health Organisation, people are usually infected following a deep bite or scratch by an infected animal with dogs being the main host and transmitter of rabies.

Karoi district veterinary department officials referred questions to their provincial bosses in Chinhoyi.

But Mudavanhu confirmed the Health ministry was now working with Vet Department in advocacy and campaign to eradicate rabies through vaccination of pets including dogs and cats in the district that covers 22 outlaying clinics and Karoi town.

“We are working with officers from vet department where they are asking as little as $1 to vaccinate a dog or cat and this will help in curbing rabies from spreading,’’ Mudavanhu said.