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Rabies in Timor-Leste

12 Apr 2024

The World Health Organization has reported the first case of rabies in Timor-Leste. A young woman in Pasabe Sub-Region, Oecusse was bitten by a dog in December 2023 and died of rabies on 22 March 2024.

Rabies is now a high risk in Timor-Leste.

Rabies is a fatal viral infection which affects the brain and nerves. Nearly everyone who has rabies will die. The virus is spread through the saliva of infected animals, usually following a bite, lick or scratch.

Advice to Travellers

Before you travel, you should:

If you are travelling to a country where rabies is considered a risk, you should:

  • avoid contact with animals, especially dogs, cats and monkeys: be aware that some animals can be infected with rabies without being aggressive or behaving strangely
  • be aware that children are more likely to approach animals. Check them for wounds, and encourage them to tell you if they are bitten, licked or scratched by an animal
  • read the animal bites page for advice on how to prevent being bitten by bats and animals
  • seek immediate medical attention if you might have been exposed to rabies

For further information, see the fitfortravel Rabies page.