Stopping Dog Bites Helps Stop Rabies
In Sierra Leone, rabies is among the most highly prioritized zoonotic diseases responsible for hundreds of deaths per year. As access to vaccines and therapeutics remains a challenge, and as the majority of rabies cases are caused by dog bites, Breakthrough ACTION developed a social and behavior change campaign “Stopping Dog Bites Helps Stop Rabies”. The dog bites and rabies campaign was developed in close collaboration with the One Health Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) technical working group (TWG) and featured a campaign song, two radio spots, a job aid for providers, a reminder card to be used by for community engagement by community health workers and community animal health workers, and a poster for community members.
Since 2019, Breakthrough ACTION has conducted three rounds of dog bites and rabies campaigns in Kenema, Western Area Urban, and Moyamba and Western Area Rural, where the campaign reached 109,000 individuals, 350,456 individuals, and 105,265 individuals, respectively. The dog bites and rabies campaign trained 914 community mobilizers to conduct house-to-house visits and outreach to schools, colleges, healthcare facilities, markets, and parks. In addition to reaching community members with messages about key prevention behaviors related to dog bites, the campaign also prompted multiple communities to take action by establishing bylaws to decrease exposure to dog bites and rabies (i.e., bylaws around responsible dog ownership).
Source: Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs
Date of Publication: November 21, 2023