Boehringer Ingelheim donated 75,000 doses of rabies vaccine to the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) in recognition of World Rabies Day on 28 September.

The donation is the result of SHOTS FOR GOOD, in which Boehringer Ingelheim pledged to donate doses of rabies vaccine for every dose of PUREVAX®, RECOMBITEK® and IMRAB® vaccine purchased by participating veterinary practices from 2 July to 10 August 2018.

“The support of our participating veterinary practices made this donation possible,” said Zach Mills, DVM, executive director of Boehringer Ingelheim’s U.S. Pet Veterinary Professional Services. “Boehringer Ingelheim understands the importance of vaccination to the overall health of pets worldwide. With more than a decade of experience advocating for rabies prevention, the Global Alliance for Rabies Control has the infrastructure to put this donation to good use.”

The donated doses will support a mass dog vaccination campaign in Madagascar. Being an island nation, it provides an area of focus for this donation program, enabling the opportunity to control the disease and limit the potential for reintroduction of rabies from neighboring countries.

“We’re delighted to receive this generous donation from Boehringer Ingelheim made possible by its veterinary customers,” said Professor Louis Nel, chief executive officer of GARC. “Dog-mediated rabies disproportionately affects rural and economically disadvantaged communities. By preventing rabies at its source, we can help protect those who lack access to effective rabies treatment.”

GARC will manage the campaign in Madagascar in concert with the government veterinary services and international and local NGOs. The organizations will use established protocols to plot and record each animal vaccinated along with real-time tracking of the progress of the program to help ensure each priority area is suitably covered before moving on to other areas. The coalition and support from local veterinary services will ensure a sustainable approach embedded in the local community.

“Dog owners in Madagascar want to vaccinate their dogs against rabies, but barriers like cost and access to facilities prevent them from doing so,” Nel added.

About World Rabies Day

World Rabies Day, held every year on September 28, is observed by the United Nations as an International Day. Coordinated by the Global Alliance for Rabies Control, it is a day to raise awareness about rabies and how to prevent this deadly disease. Hundreds of events are held by organizations and individuals around the world in recognition of this day.

About Global Alliance for Rabies Control

The Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) aims to eliminate human deaths from canine rabies by 2030, by working with governments; veterinary, public health and educational experts; and communities to facilitate policy change, build capacity to eliminate rabies and fill research gaps. GARC  develops capacity building tools and programs, coordinates regional networks and is coordinating the Zero by 30 campaign alongside the WHO, FAO and OIE.

GARC focuses on Africa and Asia as the two regions where the rabies burden is highest. Through regional (in Africa, Asia and the Middle East) and global networks, GARC has strong rabies control connections and collaborators in more than 70 countries.

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