APHL works closely with CDC and public health laboratories to promote the public health laboratory role in rabies testing and provide resources and training to ensure that high quality testing using the latest methods is available everywhere in the US.
Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system of humans and other mammals. The virus is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected animal. Although lethal if left untreated, rabies can be prevented with rapid and accurate laboratory diagnosis and post-exposure prophylaxis.
Public health laboratories play an important role in testing suspicious rabid animals to inform patient medical management and surveillance of positive cases. This reporting can provide an epidemiologic framework for prevention and control programs.