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At A Glance:
- Rabies is a vaccine-preventable viral disease which occurs in more than 150 countries and territories.
- Dogs are the main source of human rabies deaths, contributing up to 99% of all rabies transmissions to humans.
- Interrupting transmission is feasible through vaccination of dogs and prevention of dog bites.
- Infection causes tens of thousands of deaths every year, mainly in Asia and Africa.
- Globally rabies causes an estimated cost of US$ 8.6 billion per year
- 40% of people bitten by suspect rabid animals are children under 15 years of age.
- Immediate, thorough wound washing with soap and water after contact with a suspect rabid animal is crucial and can save lives.
- Engagement of multiple sectors and One Health collaboration including community education, awareness programs and vaccination campaigns are critical.
- WHO leads the collective “United Against Rabies” to drive progress towards "Zero human deaths from dog-mediated rabies by 2030".