November 01, 2022
Every nine minutes, someone dies of rabies in a low- and middle-income country. Four out of 10 rabies deaths occur in children under the age of 15, and 80 percent of cases occur in rural areas.
Dog-to-human transmission accounts for 99 percent of rabies cases in humans. India has the highest rabies death rate in the world, largely because of a dense free-range dog population.
Rabies is thought to be the inspiration for many zombie stories because once exposed to the rabies virus, most often through bites of infected mammals, it is nearly 100 percent fatal if the victim does not receive rabies treatment vaccines before symptoms show.
The incubation period for rabies can range from one week to one year. The virus causes a gradual and deadly inflammation of the brain and spinal cord as it spreads throughout the central nervous system.
Vaccinating at least 70 percent of at-risk dogs is the ‘number one recommendation’ for preventing rabies transmission.