WHO and FAO conduct Joint Risk Assessment for Rabies, at West Nusa Tenggara

Between 4th and 7th April 2019, WHO and FAO conducted a multisectoral meeting and Joint Risk Assessment (JRA) as part of the Rabies outbreak response in West Nusa Tenggara. Representatives from various sectors of the provinces and districts participated in the meeting to formulate recommendations and develop a detailed operational plan for rabies control based on risk characterization in their respective provinces and districts. All participating stakeholders committed to contribute towards rabies control in a One Health approach.

During the Joint Risk Assessment for Rabies in West Nusa Tenggara in early April, the Ministry of Health (MoH), and Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) met with resource persons from the Coordinating Ministry of Human Development and Culture, Ministry of Internal Affairs and National Disaster Agency to discuss the outbreak of rabies in the region and the subsequent response efforts.

Data was used from the human health sector, animal health sector and other related sectors from provincial and district levels to facilitate the JRA. The assessment teams determined risk parameters and outlined risk pathways. Based on the identified hazards and exposures, the JRA teams characterized the likelihood of the risks and impacts in their respective districts and provinces. Using this analysis, tailored operational plans for rabies control were developed.

Key discussions of the meeting:

  • MoH and MoA conveyed integrated rabies control strategy in One Health approach
  • the Ministry of Internal Affairs shared information on their regulation no. 101 (2018), regarding minimum service standards on disaster management (including zoonosis) for district and municipalities
  • and the National Disaster Agency discussed on the procedures to access emergency funds upon disaster statement by local authorities

At the conclusion of the JRA, it was determined that 70% dog vaccination coverage is the benchmark required to prevent future rabies transmission. This also included the need to control the mobility of the dogs. Early detection and prompt treatment, including the proper management of a patient who has been bitten, was also identified as vital.

Furthermore, it was established that Rabies centers play important roles for prompt bite-case management, provision of Vaccine Against Rabies (VAR)/Serum Against Rabies (SAR) for humans, development of Education Information Communication (EIC) materials, and raising community awareness on rabies control all had.

Collaboration between human health, animal health and other related sectors through the One Health approach is crucial to successfully control rabies. The active participation of all stakeholders throughout the JRA meeting demonstrated clear dedication to control Rabies at West Nusa Tenggara through the One Health approach.

Workshops during the Joint Risk Assessment on Rabies at West Nusa Tenggara
Dr Endang/WHO