Can the cycle of rabies transmission be broken with current dog vaccination coverage in the Greater Accra Region, Ghana?
Perdita Lopes1,2,&, Patricia Akweongo1, Ebenezer Afari1, Frederick Wurapa1, Samuel Sackey1
1Ghana Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, School of Public Health, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana, 2Veterinary Services Directorate, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Accra, Ghana
Perdita Lopes, Ghana Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, School of Public Health, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana
rabies, a highly fatal, viral disease caused by a Lyssavirus from the family Rhadoviridae, is acquired through the bite of an infected animal, mostly dogs. It can affect all warm blooded vertebrates including man. Estimated annual global human mortalities from rabies is 55,000, of which 31,000 and 24,000 are from Asia and Africa respectively, where an estimated US$ 583.5 million is spent on its control. Rabies is endemic in Ghana. We undertook an analysis of rabies data in the Greater Accra Region to determine the magnitude and the trend of animal rabies, and assess percentage coverage of animal anti-rabies vaccinations annually from 2007 - 2011.
we reviewed all rabies records for all ten districts in the region, interviewed staff of the regional rabies desks, and abstracted data from post-mortem. Data was entered and analysed with Microsoft Excel and Epi-InfoTM version 3.5.3. We calculated means, percentages, drew graphs and analysed trends.
a total of 309 animal specimens tested during the period, 283/309 were positive for rabies; predictive value positive being 91.6%. Of the positive cases, 272/283 (96.1%) were dogs, 276/283 (97.5%) of which had no previous vaccination history. Pet vaccinations and the number of outbreaks were highest in 2011 at 14,521 and 55 respectively. Percentage vaccination ranged from 5.9 - 7.8, falling far short of the 70% recommended by the World Health Organization.
the upsurge in rabies outbreaks in Greater Accra Region could be due to the low vaccination coverage and absence of simultaneous mass vaccinations across the districts.
The 2nd International Conference on Rabies in West Africa (RIWA) (Madina)
Rabies in West Africa, a forum to coordinate regular meeting among governments and stakeholders in one-health, was inaugurated in December, 2012 to link Anglophone and Francophone West African countries in the surveillance and control of rabies. It aims to disseminate progress reports on rabies surveillance and control activities in West Africa. Its first conference was jointly sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Health, Nigeria and the University of Ibadan Centre for Control and Prevention of Zoonoses. The 2nd conference was held concurrently with the 20th Congress of the Ghana Veterinary Medical Association. The scientific programme included 2 lead papers, 9 symposia and a roundtable discussion. The presented papers which focused on: (i) knowledge, attitude and practices among native community stakeholders; (ii) clinical detection and outbreak investigations; (iii) national laboratory diagnostic activities and vaccination records; (iv) wildlife infection study; and (v) spatial or spatio-temporal distribution of dog bite victims with suspected, probable and confirmed rabies exposures from three countries namely, Ghana (7); Nigeria (4) and Liberia (1). The conference gave consensus report that rabies has remained a neglected disease in West Africa and therefore deserves one-health approach for its control and prevention alongside a stepwise eradication in domestic dogs and humans.
Dates: 28 Oct 14 - 31 Oct 14
Venue: Institute of Local Government Studies
Organizers: The Society for Rabies in West Africa
Contact person: Professor Albert B. Ogunkoya (firstname.lastname@example.org)