STOR is pleased to announce its first Training Course on Rabies, in collaboration with the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie, the REMESA Secretariat (at the FAO/WOAH office in Tunis), and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). The event will take place in Padua, at the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie, the FAO Reference Center for this disease, from September 26th to September 28th, 2023, in celebration of the 17th World Rabies Day.

This day is coordinated by the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) and is observed annually on September 28th, the anniversary of Louis Pasteur’s death. This year’s theme is “Rabies: All for 1, One Health for all”, highlighting the need for all countries to collaborate and strengthen global healthcare systems in the effort to reduce the impact of rabies on both human and animal health.

Rabies is one of the oldest diseases known to humanity, yet it remains a daily threat to millions of people worldwide, particularly in Africa and Asia, where dogs serve as the primary reservoir, and a high percentage of these dogs are either semi-owned or stray and unvaccinated. It is estimated that rabies claims a life every 9 minutes, approximately 59,000 people each year, disproportionately affecting the less educated and economically disadvantaged population who lack access to or do not seek post-exposure prophylaxis. However, despite being invariably fatal once symptoms appear, infection can be prevented 100% through timely intervention.

The Training Course will feature the participation of one scientist representing each of the REMESA member states. It is important to emphasize that participants from North Africa and the Middle East will be funded by STOR, demonstrating the organization’s commitment to promoting international collaboration.

The theoretical-practical training course, titled “Towards Rabies Control: Epidemiology, Diagnosis, Vaccination”, will span three intense days of learning and knowledge exchange. Two of these days will involve hands-on activities conducted within the laboratories of the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie and the sanitary kennel of the Azienda Unità Locale Socio Sanitaria 6 Euganea. The third day will be entirely theoretical, featuring presentations by leading experts in this field as guest speakers. The entire day will be livestreamed on the Zoom digital platform, allowing remote participation for other researchers as well.

STOR’s Training Course represents a significant step forward in promoting animal health and international collaboration in the Mediterranean region. It provides a unique opportunity for scientists and experts to share knowledge and develop skills to address common challenges in the fight against rabies.


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