KARACHI: Beware of dogs and don’t let them bite you as the shortage of anti-rabies vaccine (ARV) continues in public hospitals across Sindh. There has been an exponential rise in the number of dog-bite cases, with 8,800 cases being reported at JPMC alone in 2019.
According to report, the Sindh government has failed to provide the vaccine to healthcare facilities, which includes those working under Karachi Metropolitan Corporation. Some public hospitals in Karachi including Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital, Indus Hospital and Abbasi Shaheed Hospital have the vaccine but in limited stock.
The main cause of this shortage is lack of funds. Even hospitals operating under KMC are facing difficulties in acquiring ARV due to shortage of funds. The non-availability of vaccine in the open market is also a big problem.
Sindh Health Minister Azra Fazal Pechuho has categorically denied any shortage and urged all hospitals to requisition ARV as and when they are running out.
According to stats from the Sindh Health Department, 122,566 people were bitten by dogs till August this year in Sindh. Most number of dog-bites cases have been reported in Qambar, Dadu and Naushahro Feroze.