Clinical incidence and people’s awareness of rabies in North West Ethiopia

W.T. Jemberu, W. Molla, G. Almaw, H. Hogeveen, M.C.M. Mourits

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingAbstract


A survey was conducted to determine the incidence of rabies in humans and domestic animals, and to assess the people’s awareness about the disease in north Gondar zone, North West Ethiopia. The incidence of rabies in humans and domestic animals was followed for one year from April 2009 to March 2010 based on clinical manifestation of the disease. A questionnaire was also administered to120 residents and 5 traditional healers to assess the knowledge and practices associated with the disease in the study area. Annual rabies incidence of 23.33/million in humans, 4,128/million in dogs, 198.86/ million in cattle, 676.79/million in equines, and 144.49/million in goats was recorded. Dogs were found to be the major reservoir of the disease. Almost all community members were familiar with the disease. But serious misconception and lack of awareness about the disease’s causes and means of transmissions were observed. The majority (82%) of the people attend traditional healers when they feel exposed to the disease and in some cases (16%), the traditional treatment was preceded by diagnosis. It was also observed that for people who had taken the modern post exposure treatment, the mean duration of the time between time of exposure and starting of the treatment was 17 days. In conclusion the incidence of the rabies in the study area could be considered high with significant public health and economic burden. A serious lack of awareness about the disease and high reliance on traditional treatment, some aspect which is scientifically implausible, was observed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBook of Abstracts of the 13th International Symposium on Veterinary Epidemiology and Economics
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventISVEE13 - Maastricht, Netherlands
Duration: 20 Aug 201224 Aug 2012




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