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Camarines Norte intensifies anti-rabies drive

DAET, Camarines Norte (PIA) – Camarines Norte Gov. Ricarte Padilla has directed municipal governments  to strictly enforce their respective animal control ordinances to stem the increasing number of animal bite cases in the province.

Padilla said authorities should see to it that pet owners adhere to the country’s responsible pet ownership law to prevent animal bite cases and deaths caused by rabies.

The governor was referring to Section 5 of the Anti-Rabies Act of 2007, which holds dog owners primarily responsible for controlling their animals.

The Provincial Health Office (PHO) has observed an increase in the number of animal bite cases in 2023 compared to 2022.

Dr. Jocelyn Iraola, DOH provincial officer, appeals to the local government units to intensify their campaign to curb the increasing number of animal bite cases in Camarines Norte. She made the appeal at the recent joint meeting of Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC), Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council (PADAC), End Local Communist Armed Conflict (ELCAC) and Enhanced-Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).

Provincial Health Officer Arnel Francisco reported that animal bites in the entire province in 2023 had reached 16,234.

On the other hand, Department of Health provincial officer Jocelyn Iraola reported that a person died due to rabies in the province last month.  

She echoed Padilla’s exhortation to go after irresponsible pet owners.

Iraola said LGUs should allocate a budget for anti-rabies vaccines instead of purchasing anti-rabies shots for bite victims.

Padilla revealed that the provincial budget allocates millions of pesos annually for anti-rabies vaccines.

On top of this, the provincial government also maintains three animal bite centers where patients can get free treatment.

Padilla emphasized that the government should implement preventive and stringent measures to reduce the expenses incurred in purchasing anti-rabies vaccines.

"We must take action to address the issue of anti-rabies campaign in the province," he added.

According to the DOH website, rabies is a viral infection that is transmitted to humans through the saliva of infected animals, particularly dogs, cats, and rodents.

It is usually transmitted through bites or scratches, and symptoms can take weeks or months to appear.

“It is considered to be a neglected disease that is 100 percent fatal though 100 percent preventable. It is not among the leading causes of mortality and morbidity in the country, but it is regarded as a significant public health problem because it is one of the most acutely fatal infections, and it is responsible for the deaths of 200-300 Filipinos annually,” the website post reads.  (PIA 5/Camarines Norte)

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Rosalita Manlangit


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