Rabies is a vaccine-preventable zoonotic viral disease that occurs in more than 150 countries and areas. Dogs are the source of the vast majority of human rabies deaths. Infection causes tens of thousands of deaths every year, mostly in Asia and Africa. Once symptoms of the disease develop, rabies is nearly always fatal. However, immediate wound cleansing and immunization within a few hours after contact with a suspect rabid animal can prevent the onset of rabies and death.
In the Western Pacific Region, seven countries (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mongolia, Philippines and Viet Nam) are considered high risk for rabies.