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According to the Ghana Health Service, as of Monday, September 12, 2022, the Ashanti Region had recorded four confirmed Rabies cases.
The cases were reported from Asante Akim South, Bosomtwe and Kwabre East.
“The Regional Health Directorate brings to the notice of all health facilities about the rise in the outbreak of rabies and deaths in three districts in the Ashanti Region,” the Ghana Health Service alerted.
Ghana Health Service urged all health facilities to take precautions against the disease.
Cases of persons with headaches, neck pain, nausea, fever, fear of water, anxiety, agitation, abnormal tingling sensations or pain at the wound site or contact with a rabid animal should be on the lookout for suspected cases.
The Service also ordered all the Regional Health Directorates across the country to enhance community/public sensitization to rabies, improve case search for rabies in the facilities, follow up and treat all cases of dog bites, and liaise with veterinary officers in districts for dog vaccination exercise.
Rabies is a vaccine-preventable disease. Vaccinating dogs is the most cost-effective strategy for preventing rabies in people. Dog vaccination reduces deaths attributable to dog-mediated rabies and the need for PEP as a part of dog bite patient care.
People are usually infected after a bite or scratch from an animal with rabies. Transmission to humans by rabid dogs accounts for up to 99% of cases.
Transmission can also occur if the saliva of infected animals comes into direct contact with human mucosa or fresh skin wounds. Contraction of rabies through inhalation of virus-containing aerosols or through transplantation of infected organs is possible but quite rare.
Human-to-human transmission through bites or saliva is possible but has not been confirmed as well as the consumption of raw meat or milk of infected animals.