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Disease Outbreak News Rabies – Timor-Leste

The Timor-Leste government reported to the World Health Organization on 22 March 2024 its first confirmed fatal human case of rabies.

The country is currently classified as rabies-free. The case, from Pasabe Sub-Region, Oecusse, with a history of dog bite on 26 December 2023, went to a local health center on 20 March and died on 22 March 2024.

As of 26 March, a total of 29 suspected rabies cases in humans, with exposure to dogs, were reported in Oecusse Municipality this year. The public health response is ongoing and includes vaccination of dogs, risk communication, training of healthcare workers on case management, active surveillance, and ensuring the availability of rabies vaccines and human rabies immunoglobulin.

Based on the current available information, the WHO assesses the risk posed by this event as high at the national level and low at regional and global levels.

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