We congratulate Gautret and Parola on their comments in response to our review of human rabies cases in travelers. We could not agree more. It is indeed crucial for everybody at risk of exposure to rabies to be made aware of that risk. This refers not only to people living in endemic areas but also to travelers visiting endemic areas. Everybody needs to be informed of this specific risk, which can only be minimized by avoiding contact with animals, taking the appropriate measures without delay when exposed, and considering the risks and benefits of pre-exposure prophylactic vaccination. As suggested by the Global Alliance for Rabies Control, dealing with rabies should always be a multi-disciplinary, intersectoral endeavor, looking beyond the rim of the teacup. The fight against rabies can only be successful if medical, veterinarian, and public health experts work closely together, including those specialized in travel medicine.
Claudius Malerczyk and Dieter Gniel
Medical Affairs, Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics
GmbH, Marburg, Germany