Epidemiology and Infection

Original Papers

Animal and human health

Effectiveness of dog rabies vaccination programmes: comparison of owner-charged and free vaccination campaigns

S. DURRa1, R. MINDEKEMa2, Y. KANINGAa3, D. DOUMAGOUM MOTOa2, M. I. MELTZERa4, P. VOUNATSOUa1 and J. ZINSSTAGa1 c1

a1 Swiss Tropical Institute, Basel, Switzerland

a2 Centre de Support en Santé International, N'Djaména, Chad

a3 Clinique Vétérinaire Urbaine, N'Djaména, Chad

a4 Division of Emerging Infections and Surveillance Systems, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, USA

SUMMARY

We investigated the percentage of dogs that could be vaccinated against rabies by conducting a pilot campaign in N'Djaména, Chad. Owners were charged US$4.13 per dog vaccinated, and 24% of all dogs in the three city districts covered by the campaign were vaccinated. Total campaign costs were US$7623, resulting in an average of US$19.40 per vaccinated dog. This is five times more expensive than the cost per animal vaccinated during a previous free vaccination campaign for dog-owners, conducted in the same districts. The free campaign, which vaccinated 2605 more dogs than this campaign, cost an additional US$1.45 per extra dog vaccinated. Campaigns in which owners are charged for vaccinations result in lower vaccination rates than in free campaigns. Public health officials can use these results when evaluating the costs and benefits of subsidizing dog rabies vaccination programmes.

(Accepted February 08 2009)

(Online publication March 30 2009)

Correspondence:

c1 Address for correspondence: Professor J. Zinsstag, Swiss Tropical Institute, PO Box, CH-4002 Basel, Switzerland. (Email: jakob.zinsstag@unibas.ch)

Footnotes

† These authors contributed equally to this work.

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