Participatory epidemiological study on the burden of rabies in animals and humans in three districts of Buno Bedele Zone, West Ethiopia
Rabies is one of the priority zoonotic diseases and a major public health challenge in Ethiopia. Dog plays an important role in the transmission of the disease to humans. With this point in mind, this study was conducted in selected districts of Buno Bedele Zone namely Bedele, Gechi, and Dabo Hana districts, Western Oromia regional state from December 2019 to April 2020. The objective of the study was to know the status and burden of rabies in the community using the participatory approach and retrospective record assessment from animal and human health facilities. Twelve interview meetings were conducted in 12 Kebeles, which involved 156 informants. In this survey authors learned that dogs were the species most affected by rabies followed by cattle, human, cat, equine, and shoats. Accordingly, rabies in dog had an average score of 64 out of 100 with a range of 50-80. Besides, rabies outbreak was frequently noted between June to October in the study areas. Slaughter and sharing of the meat for household consumption was the most common practice taken to salvage bitten cattle. As per the available record in the study area, the estimated rabies cases incidence was 1.75 bovines, 18 dogs, 2.37 equines, 2.28 cats, and 0.37 shoats per 10,000 animals annually. The annual average post-exposure rabies vaccinations records were 75, 39, and 63 in Bedele, Dabo Hana, and Gechi districts, respectively. On the other hand, the average annual rabies death in humans was 2.2, 1.4, and 1.8 in Bedele, Dabo Hana, and Gechi districts, respectively. In general, this study shows that rabies is a disease that worth serious attention in the study areas.