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PIA Press Release
2009/02/06

Asian delegates to learn from anti-rabies program

by Rey Anthony Chiu

Tagbilaran City (6 February) -- Delegates from 3 Asian countries come here on February 11-12 to learn about the piloted province-wide anti-rabies drive.

The province is currently leading the way in implementing rabies prevention and eradication program in partnership with foreign donors and the active help of the national government.

This week, the province hosts the study tour delegates from China, Japan and South Korea who are observing the implementation of the Bohol Rabies Prevention and Eradication (BPRE) Program.

Aside from observing the program implementation, the study tour participants would also exchange ideas with the BRPE Council members to gather significant insights on the program implementation.

It may be recalled that local authorities reacted in alarm over the rise in documented rabies cases in Bohol, one which also alarmed regional health authorities of the risk especially in the tourist island.

Immediately, upon the recommendation of the Office of the Provincial Veterinarian (OPV) under Dr. Stella Marie Lapiz, Governor Erico Aumentado ordered the creation of a council and consequently unleashed the initial steps in spreading the province-wide prevention program.

Approaching the problem through multiple approaches, the council spearheaded advocacy on crafting the empowering ordinance through grassroots consultations.

Meanwhile, the OPV initiated the steps in putting up dog surveys, massive dog registration and vaccination to scientifically meet the problem head-on and lobbied for more bite-treatment centers and government help on animal and human rabies vaccines.

With the passing of the provincial anti rabies ordinance, corollary town anti-rabies councils were also mandated while dog population control earned new allies in the instituted Bantay Rabies sa Barangay.

Initially armed with a relatively little fund for an ambitious program, Bohol finally succeeded in engaging Alliance for Rabies Control and the World Health Organization to help funding the program and attain established targets.

The Bohol anti rabies program has also caught the attention of international funding agencies as well as nations struggling against rabies as it piloted a template in area-based anti-rabies program. (PIA) [top]

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