A special thanks to Dr Jacques Barrat
After dedicating decades of his life to rabies elimination and being a distinguished scientist and pioneer in the field of rabies, Dr Jacques Barrat has continued to dedicate his time to helping others – even after retirement. Never slowing in his work, Jacques has been one of our most valuable volunteers, helping to translate contents into French to reach a wider audience and ensuring that life-saving advice continues to reach all people in need.
From all of us at GARC, as well as all the people who have benefitted from reading the translated materials, we would like to say a big “Thank you” to Jacques.
Below is a special personal note from Jacques giving a little more background into his motivation and his passion in the fight against rabies.
“I am a French vet who graduated in Toulouse in 1976. After 3 years as an assistant at the Veterinary School, I moved to the laboratory that is now ANSES-LRFSN as a military vet for field studies on the red fox. Between 1982 and 2017, I was responsible for rabies diagnosis, surveillance, and control, and in 1996, I also became head of the animal experimentation facility.
The Southern African Rabies Group was founded in Lusaka in 1992 and became SEARG in 1993 in Pietermaritzburg. SEARG met every 2-3 years in one of the 18 participating countries until the merging with PARACON happened in 2015, by which time 11 meetings had been held.
In 1997, I discovered a new and pleasant hobby: editing and compiling meeting proceedings. At the beginning they were printed and finally, unavailable to laboratory people. To compensate I burned 200 CDs per meeting in 2001, 2003 and 2006. Then, to give better access to everyone, I asked my son to develop a website in 2006. The second version (2010) was a user-friendlier French/English one that I updated regularly. A diagnosis manual was also edited. All this was made in collaboration with the SEARG Chairman and 4 experts: A. King, G. Bishop, A. Wandeler and J. Bingham. This website was removed in 2016.
Since 2010, I translate documents into French; now mostly for GARC.
Since my retirement, it is the only "rabid" activity that I maintain; it is for a good cause and gives me the opportunity to work with pleasant people, so ... why should I stop?”
Article contributed by the GARC team and Dr Jacques Barrat