Indigenous child hospitalized with suspected human rabies dies in BH

A 4-year-old indigenous child died this Saturday (28) of suspected human rabies, in Belo Horizonte. The girl was hospitalized at the João XXIII Emergency Hospital, in the Center-South region, after being transferred from the countryside. If contamination is confirmed, this would be the fourth death from the disease in Minas only in 2022.

According to the Minas Gerais State Health Department (SES-MG), the case was reported last Friday (27), in Bertópolis, in the Jequitinhonha Valley. The child from the Maxakali tribe had viral encephalitis, an infection of the nervous system that causes inflammation of the brain.

The Air Operations Battalion of the Fire Department was activated and transported the child to the capital of Minas Gerais, yesterday.

To confirm the disease, some materials were collected and sent to be examined. SES is now awaiting the results of laboratory tests. So far, three cases have been confirmed.

The first record is of a 12-year-old male patient who died in early April. The second is from a teenager, also 12 years old, certified on April 19. The girl died days later. According to SES, both cases are related to bites by the same bat.

The third case was confirmed on April 26, after tests found that a 5-year-old boy had also died from rabies.

According to the Minas Gerais Government, the individual did not show signs of “bite or scratch by a bat”. The case remains under epidemiological investigation to identify the circumstances of the infection.

Through a note, the Minas Gerais State Health Department emphasizes that, as soon as it was notified of the first suspected case, it adopted together with the Special Indigenous Sanitary District/DSEI MGES and the Pole area team “immediate and continuous measures for the prevention and control of anger in the locality”.

The Secretariat also informs that the last case of death from human rabies in Minas Gerais had been registered in 2012, in the municipality of Rio Casca. “SES-MG also highlights the importance of looking for the nearest Health Unit to assess the need to adopt prophylactic measures (administration of vaccine and/or serum) in case of any incident with wild or domestic mammals, especially bats, dogs and cats”, he says.

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