Dr Mashair Ismail

Central Veterinary Laboratory, Iraq, Rabies Hero June 2021

Dr Mashair Ismail received the Rabies Hero Award for her monumental efforts in improving rabies control rabies in Iraq. Establishing in-country molecular testing and sequencing to analyze the virus strains circulating has been critical for understanding the disease in the region. Her dedication has been remarkable. She has been working on rabies for many years, collecting samples in difficult situations, determined to increase the knowledge of rabies and enhance control strategies in the country. Her efforts continued despite the massive challenges at times of conflict.

Receiving the award Dr Ismail was very humble and said: “I am deeply honored and appreciative of this award, which reflects the efforts through these ten years. Despite all the adverse elements in our country we were able to a make giant stride and achieve significant progress in controlling this disease.”

Her unwavering commitment and perseverance in overcoming hurdles are especially evident through the story of Dr Ismail’s work told us by her nominator and a long-term collaborator at the University of Surrey, Dr Dan Horton, read more.