Rabies: updated case report, September 2013

Dec 15, 2020 | Rabies | 0 comments

Kindly note that the following reflects the reported rabies cases in South Africa: it does not constitute an outbreak.

Kindly note that the following reflects the reported rabies cases in South Africa: it does not constitute an outbreak.

A total of seven laboratory-confirmed and two probable cases of human rabies has been reported in South Africa for 2013 to date. In 2012, a total of ten laboratory confirmed cases of human rabies was recorded in South Africa.

Domestic dogs and cats, due to their high level of contact with the human population, pose the main risk to humans, although any mammal can contract rabies. Domestic dogs and wildlife (including bat eared fox, yellow mongoose and black-backed jackal) are most commonly diagnosed with rabies in South Africa. Smaller mammals such as rodents and squirrels are not considered animals of concern for rabies transmission; usually these animals will die as a result of the rabid animal attack before they can successfully incubate and transmit the disease.

Rabies-infected animals have been reported from all nine provinces in South Africa. KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Province has the highest rate of dog rabies in the country.

The primary modes of limiting rabies transmission and risk to humans include keeping rabies vaccination of domestic dogs and cats up to date, avoiding contact with unknown and stray or wild animals, and seeking prompt medical care (including rabies post-exposure prophylaxis) after potential exposures.

Healthcare workers and members of the public can access the NICD website (www.nicd.ac.za) for further information regarding rabies. The national rabies guideline document may also be downloaded from the NICD website at http://www.nicd.ac.za/?page=guidelines&id=73.


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