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Product title :

Rabies-free status of the Czech Republic after 15 years of oral vaccination

Author(s) : O. Matouch, J. Vitasek, Z. Semerad & M. Malena

Summary :

Rabies in foxes was widespread in the Czech Republic after World War II, reaching its highest incidence in the 1980s. Applied control measures had only a limited effect and rabies incidence in wildlife continuously endangered both domestic animals and human beings. A significant improvement was noticed after the introduction of oral vaccination of foxes in 1989. The original manual distribution of vaccine baits has been replaced by aerial distribution, leading to the total elimination of rabies throughout the country. The last case of rabies was diagnosed in a fox in the district of Trutnov in April 2002. Since that time no case of rabies has been registered in the Czech Republic, and it therefore fulfils the requirements for the status of a ‘rabies-free country’. Effective epidemiological surveillance and preventive oral vaccination of foxes will be necessary to maintain this status, especially in the endangered border regions.

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