A Briton has died after being bitten by a cat with rabies in Morocco, officials said Monday, only the seventh known case in the United Kingdom since 2000.
England’s health service issued a reminder Monday for travelers to avoid coming into contact with animals when travelling to rabies affected countries, particularly those in Asia and Africa.
Rabies has been effectively eradicated in Britain, although they do still spread among some bats.
“There is no risk to the wider public in relation to this case but, as a precautionary measure, health workers and close contacts are being assessed and offered vaccination when necessary,” said Mary Ramsay, the health service’s chief of immunization.
The Press Association news agency said the person was bitten a few weeks ago and not given potentially life-saving treatment early enough.
Rabies is a viral disease that causes an inflammation of the brain. It is usually fatal by the time the first symptoms emerge.
England’s health service said that no cases of humans acquiring the disease from any animal other than a bat have been recorded within the country since 1902.
One person acquired it from a bat in Scotland in 2002, and five people contacted while travelling between 2002 and 2017, the health service said.