DOH, JICA to set up rabies prevention, treatment network
To help achieve its 2020 goal of a rabies-free Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) has partnered with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) to establish a rabies prevention and treatment network that would combat the disease which kills at least 200 Filipinos yearly.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and Jica Philippine Office chief representative Yoshio Wada recently signed the agreement for the project, which aims to come up with “innovative diagnostic methods for rabies, laboratory-based surveillance system, and evidence-based interventions.”
Data from the World Health Organization (WHO) show that the Philippines is one of the top 10 countries with the highest incidence of rabies. In 2015, the DOH reported 217 rabies cases and close to 784,000 incidents of animal bites or rabies exposures.
Under the DOH-Jica partnership, which will start within the year, Japanese experts on human and canine rabies studies and diagnostic methods will be assigned in the country.
The DOH and the Department of Agriculture will also work with the Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development, Oita University, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Kitasato University, Nagasaki University and Tohoku University. /ee
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