Vaccines against rabies, a virus spread by animal bites, have been available for more than 100 years. Regardless, it is still killing people. Rabies is without a doubt among the most fatal infectious diseases on the planet, killing nearly everyone who develops clinical symptoms.

Africa is responsible for around 36.4 percent of the fatalities of the 59,000 human rabies deaths per year. Rabies is a widespread disease in Kenya, taking the lives of an estimated 2,000 people each year.

Kenya is developing a plan to eradicate human rabies mortality by 2030, beginning with a few sample counties and then expanding to the rest of the country.

Kenya’s rabies elimination method, which began in 2014, comprises mass canine vaccination, timely rabies vaccine supply, public teaching, and increased disease surveillance in both animal and human inhabitants. Reports suggest that the growth is slow, much like in other developing nations. 

One hindrance is a lack of political commitment, which arises in part from a misunderstanding of the disease’s true impact on public health. In recent years, many governments have increased their rabies prevention efforts by canceling large dog vaccination campaigns. They have informed the people about rabies and given out before and after exposure immunizations. Canine rabies has been eradicated in the majority of industrialized countries. Aside from these protections, medical practitioners must be conscious of the infection and capable of treating it.

To avert illness and death, two critical surgeries must be performed quickly after a lethal bite. First, the bite and/or the wound must be cleaned for at least 15 minutes with clean, flowing water along with non-irritating soap. A rabies vaccine shot should be given on the same day as the bite. A couple of injections are required over a month. In the event of a serious bite, immunoglobulin would be necessary in addition to the vaccine.

The type of therapy received at a health center influences the risk of rabies exposure. If bitten by a rabid dog and the wound is not adequately treated, humans are more likely to catch the disease (and require immunoglobulin for severe exposure) (and immunoglobulin for severe exposure). As a result, there may be a shortage of medical workers who are knowledgeable about bite management, as well as a dearth of vaccination and immunoglobulin, or faulty immunizations.

Control and eradication of rabidity necessitate the collaboration of all segments of society, including the government, private sector, and general public. Rabies vaccinations for humans and animals, as well as better public and healthcare professional education, may assist Kenya to meet its 2030 target of eliminating human rabies deaths.

Cooperation, however, is required. The most critical problem is keeping healthcare personnel up to date on the most recent best practices. It will be impossible to eradicate rabies in Kenya unless the most recent WHO recommendations are followed, information is shared across the health and veterinary sectors, and healthcare staff is taught how to properly manage bite victims and human rabies cases, including diagnosis.

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