Combating Rabies from the Skies: How the Texas State Guard’s 3rd Brigade is Making a Difference

The Texas State Guard’s (State Defense Force) 3rd Brigade has been a steadfast participant in the Oral Rabies Vaccination Program (ORVP), demonstrating a long-term commitment to public health and safety. This annual endeavor, in collaboration with the Texas Department of State Health Services’ Zoonosis Control Branch, highlights the brigade’s dedication to the community beyond their conventional military duties. By continuing to support this critical program, the 3rd Brigade plays a pivotal role in preventive health measures, showcasing the versatility and community-oriented nature of the Texas State Guard. Their involvement not only exemplifies military assistance in civil operations but also underscores the importance of inter-agency cooperation in addressing public health concerns.

The ORVP, spearheaded by the Texas Department of State Health Services for over two decades, has benefited immensely from the participation of the Texas State Guard, who began participating since the early 2000s. The program unites state and federal agencies with business partners to distribute oral rabies vaccination packets, targeting grey foxes and coyotes to curb the spread of rabies to humans and domestic animals. The Texas State Guard’s role is multifaceted, involving the handling and distribution of vaccine packets, maintenance of cleanliness and safety in operation areas, and support for aerial and ground distribution efforts. The operational area encompasses approximately 16,400 square miles across three border maintenance zones. This collaborative effort among various entities, including the Texas State Guard, underscores the program’s effectiveness in rabies control and prevention, contributing to the safety and health of the community at large.

Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program (ORVP) 2024 Team









Source: Texas State Guard

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