Sri Lanka is determined to eliminate rabies from the country by 2016. According to health officials, Sri Lanka spends nearly half a billion rupees to prevent and control rabies per annum.
The Rabies Control program was commenced in Sri Lanka in 1975 and since then up to this year a remarkable decrease is shown. The number of rabies deaths that occurred in 2008 and 2009 were 51 and 35 respectively as against the number in 1973 which was over 370.
The National Program objectives include, to ensure protection for those exposed to suspected rabies infection, to ensure protection for those who are at a higher risk of contacting rabies, to establish herd immunity in animal reservoirs with special emphasis on dogs, to control the population of animal reservoirs with special emphasis on dogs through appropriate methods, to remove all rabies suspected dogs humanely and to reduce the transmission of Japanese Encephalitis in pig population.
Activities undertaken to fulfill these objectives include Provision of Post Exposure Treatment for rabid and rabies suspected animal bites, Mass immunization of dogs against rabies, Mass Animal Birth Control programs, Mass awareness programs, Training of all stake holders of rabies control, Research and surveys, Monitoring and evaluation of ongoing rabies control activities, Strengthen the Rabies surveillance system, Enforcement of rabies control legislation, Mass immunization of pigs against Japanese Encephalitis infection.
Members of the Group