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Ministry calls for rabies vaccination

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
People come to seek anti-rabies vacine at Pasteur Institute of Cambodia in Phnom Penh. Supplied

Due to increased demand for the anti-rabies vaccine, the Health Ministry is calling on people who have been bitten by dogs and cats, and are showing symptoms of rabies, to seek immediate or scheduled vaccination.

The call was made after more and more citizens reported cases of being bitten by domestic animals, such as cats and dogs.

Pasteur Institute of Cambodia has seen citizens come demanding the vaccine.

According to a Health Ministry Saturday statement, the institute is one place in the Kingdom where victims of rabies can seek vaccination.

It said an 11-year-old girl died earlier this month after she was bitten by a cat in December.

“The ministry has provided instructions and will continuously work with the Pasteur Institute of Cambodia and the national public health institutes in order to address the vaccination needs of people,” the statement said.

It said that anyone who does not urgently need vaccination but need it, should wait and let those who need it the most get vaccinated first.

“If you are trying to avoid getting bitten by dogs and cats, please do not play with them,” the ministry said. “The ministry is calling on public participation and understanding so you won’t have to waste money and time at the Pasteur Institute of Cambodia.”

Ministry spokesman Or Vandin could not be reached for comment yesterday.

A Preah Vihear province resident who declined to be named yesterdaysaid she brought her daughter to the Pasteur Institute of Cambodia because her daughter was bitten by a cat four days ago.

She said that she went to district and provincial hospitals, but they did not offer rabies vaccines, prompting her to bring her daughter to Phnom Penh for a vaccine.

“I went to district and provincial hospitals, but the staffers there told me they had no rabies vaccines, so I came to Phnom Penh,” the woman said. “But there were so many people so I had to register and fill documents first. I have to wait one day for the vaccine.”

Pang Nath, from Prey Veng province, who also had to come to Phnom Penh in order for his daughter to be vaccinated, yesterday said the Health Ministry must evenly distribute anti-rabies vaccines throughout the Kingdom, not just in major cities.

In its statement, the Health Ministry said it collaborated with the institute to distribute anti-rabies vaccines to Battambang province and is targeting Kampong Cham province next.

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