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Rabies a Serious Threat in Burma’s Cities: Report

23 January 2014

“Upwards of 75 percent” of stray dogs in Rangoon and other major cities in Burma could be infected with rabies, according to a report by the UN news agency IRIN. The disease, which the World Health Organization estimates kills 1,000 people annually in Burma, is most prevalent in densely populated areas, the report said. “Low level of awareness of the risk factors has made the problem worse,” said Kyaw Htin, a veterinary surgeon in Mandalay, which reports the most rabies cases. A low rate of vaccination for dogs was cited as a key reason for the spread of the disease, while inadequate treatment for dog bites accounted for the high number of fatalities, the report said.