Capitol’s Anti-Rabies Program Exceeds WHO Target

The Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Animal Industry (DA-BAI) recently recognized Capitol’s canine vaccination effort that accordingly, exceeded the standards set by the World Health Organizations (WHO).

Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) Chief Dr. Mary Rose Vincoy said that in the last five years, the Province was able to vaccinate at least 80 percent of the dog population of the province surpassing the World Health Organization (WHO) target which is 70 percent.

Vincoy revealed that this is the first time the DA-BAI awarded top performing local government units and cited Cebu as among the five provinces with the best anti-rabies program.

Negros Occidental, Bohol, Siquijor and Ilocos Norte also received the award.

“We are able to reach the target coverage because of the active participation of the LGUs in collaboration with the Province,” she said.

Vincoy, who received the recognition in behalf of the Province during 10th World Rabies Day in Manila, said they were able to sustain the high turn-outs of the program especially in raising public awareness about rabies through seminars and forums in schools.

“Maintaining the vaccination benchmark is a very challenging task since Cebu has the biggest dog population in the country,” she said.

Based on PVO data, the province has never dropped below 80 percent in its vaccination coverage in the last three years.

In 2015, the Province has provided anti-rabies shots to 282, 435 of the 339, 798 canines or 83 percent of the entire dog population.

Vincoy said that the main core of its anti-rabies program includes regular free vaccination, deworming, spaying, consultations in towns and cities, and distribution of free supplements.

“The PVO is adopting Indonesia’s anti-rabies program where it centered on mass dog vaccination, supplemented by rapid response and integrated bite case management,” said Vincoy.

The Veterinary office also provides assistance to LGUs such as anti-rabies shots, dog tags and collars, registry books and manpower during vaccination, she added.

National Rabies Prevention Control Committee composed of the Department of Agriculture, Department of Health, Department of Interior and Local Government and Department Education handled the screening of the winners. (Kelvin Cañizares)