The Lincoln-Lancaster Health Department (LLCHD) says it's received three confirmed cases of rabies in bats within Lincoln city limits this year. None of the bats are known to have had contact with humans, and rabies in humans is rare, but the Health Department says contact with a bat is the most common way for people to get rabies.
Tim Timmons, RN, Communicable Disease Program Supervisor for LLCHD says the department has received several reports of people waking to bats flying around in their bedrooms.
Timmons says, "Most bats do not have rabies, but you can't tell just by looking. Rabies can only be confirmed in a laboratory." He cautions to avoid bats that active during the day. Also avoid any bat that is unable to fly and is easily approached. It could very well be sick.
To avoid rabies Timmons says,
• Vaccinate pets to prevent them from contracting and transmitting rabies.
• Teach children to never handle unfamiliar animals, even if they appear friendly.
• Prevent bats from entering spaces where they might contact people and pets.
If someone is bitten by a bat, they should wash the wound thoroughly with soap and water and seek immediate medical attention.