A significant number of 36 Ugandans lose their lives to rabies every year, highlighting the importance of raising awareness and taking preventive measures.
Rabies, a deadly virus typically transmitted through the bite of infected dogs, remains a serious threat to people in Uganda. Officials from the Kampala Capital City Authority report that this preventable disease quietly takes lives, especially affecting children.
Dr. Katumba Hannington, a veterinary officer from KCCA, emphasizes that most of these tragic deaths can be avoided through timely post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) and vaccinations. However, limited access to healthcare facilities, particularly in remote areas, and a lack of awareness about rabies contribute to the persistently high mortality rate.
Efforts are underway to increase awareness about rabies and educate communities on the importance of seeking immediate medical care after potential exposure to the virus. Health authorities are also working to improve the availability of treatments and vaccines to ensure quick and effective responses to rabies cases.
The Ministry of Health collaborates with local authorities, veterinary services, and international organizations to control the stray dog population through pet vaccination and castration drives, recently conducted in Kawempe.