TACLOBAN CITY– The City Veterinary Office (CVO)here took part in a two-day basic orientation on human and animal rabies at Hotel Rodolfo last April 18–19, 2024.

Organized by the Department of Health (DOH), the event aimed to provide local stakeholders with vital knowledge and strategies in the ongoing fight against rabies.
Dr. Johdel Ty, representing city veterinary officer Dr. Eunice Alcantara during the event’s second day, presented the veterinary office’s achievements in animal control and anti-rabies programs last year.

This engagement underscores the city’s commitment to addressing rabies-related challenges through informed action.

Highlighting the severity of the situation, the DOH emphasized the ongoing public health concern posed by rabies in Eastern Visayas.

The disease, which is both preventable and fatal, continues to be transmitted primarily through dog or cat bites, necessitating urgent intervention.

The DOH reported that there were 11 fatalities in the region last year due to rabies.
The health agency urged the public, particularly those bitten by an animal, to have an early consultation, completion of post-exposure prophylaxis, and responsible pet ownership practices, including a 14-day observation period for biting animals.

“Rabies continues to be a public health problem in Eastern Visayas. It is a disease caused by a virus and is transferable to humans (zoonotic disease), and dogs are the common transmitters of this disease, which is 100% preventable and 100% fatal,” the DOH said.
During the first quarter of 2024, the Tacloban City Veterinary Office’s intensified efforts against rabies has made significant accomplishments in combating rabies.

By conducting mass dog vaccinations and offering basic veterinary care, they successfully immunized 6,484 dogs and cats in 42 barangays out of the city’s total 138. Additionally, 460 were dewormed, 229 animals were neutered, with 23 animals receiving spaying services during the same period.

Residents were urged to take advantage of the mass dog vaccination schedules organized by the CVO for the remaining days of April, targeting various barangays. These include Brgy. 110 Utap (April 22-23, 2024), Brgy. 96 Calanipawan (April 24-25, 2024), Brgy. 81 Marasbaras (April 26, 2024), Brgy. 82 Marasbaras (April 29, 2024), and Brgy 83-B Cogon, San Jose (April 30, 2024).

The city’s first quarter accomplishments in 2024 reflect its commitment to providing free anti-rabies vaccination and spay/neuter services, underscoring the importance of proactive measures in ensuring community health and safety. (MISSY G. TUBIANOSA,LEYTE NORMAL STATE UNIVERSITY STUDENT INTERN)