Whilst some of us catch our breath after September’s immense launch campaign, a few members of the team are still hard at work initiating the animal birth control training programme, which has been taking place in Guwahati over the past few weeks. This is the ongoing work of Mission Rabies; to back up sustained, annual mass vaccination drives with a longer term goal of training vets in ABC techniques and build the capacity to control dog populations locally. Our hope is that this proven method will be picked up by neighbouring municipalities and NGOs so that the work mushrooms across each state, with Government funding and support, to produce a concerted network of rabies elimination across India.
We’ve received some great publicity since smashing our target - Luke was interviewed by ITV Meridian 4th October, which you can see here, and was also named an Al Jazeera Lifelines ‘Health Hero’ in recognition of Mission Rabies' work in preventing the spread of rabies. We also received attention in the British Medical Journal on 7th October.
The final two video blogs have now been posted. In part four the team catch a rabid dog in Madurai. Whilst very sad, this video is useful in showing the symptoms of rabies, such as the way in which a rabid dog bites not only people and animals but also inanimate objects. As Luke says, these dogs are just victims of a terrible disease that is completely preventable.
Part five of the video blog takes a look at the revolutionary methodology for vaccination data collection that was introduced by Mission Rabies for this campaign. By using a smart phone app to enter information about each dog vaccinated, we collected the data required to plan and monitor future rabies control and humane dog population control activities. A longer film is currently in post-production, so we can’t wait to bring you that in a few weeks’ time.