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5.4.1 What is the difference between pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis?

PreP [1] is given prior to an exposure to rabies, and does not include RIG [2]. It is given to those at highest risk of being exposed to the disease, for example people working in a rabies vaccine manufacturing facility or in a rabies diagnostic laboratory, veterinarians, wildlife service staff and those living in or travelling to regions of the world where rabies is highly endemic or currently epidemic.

PEP [3] is given after an exposure to rabies has occurred and should include both rabies vaccine and RIG. The latter depends on the category of exposure (see section 5.4.8).

A person who has previously received either PreP or PEP, and is subsequently exposed to rabies, does not need to receive RIG, and only needs two booster doses of vaccine, one given on day 0 and one on day 3.


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Version 1 - Last updated November 2012