EU legislation

As anticipated, Commission Decision has been published today. It is Decision 2007/552/EC.

Some changes to such Decision might be decided at the Standing Committee of 8 August, but no big changes should take place. Discussions should take place regarding a possible regionalisation of the UK, dividing the country into high risk and low risk areas. A first step might be the exclusion from the high risk areas of Scotland and Wales, but it is not known when this will be possible (probably not on Wednesday).

 

UK measures

Once regionalization will be completed, and provided that the situation improves and that no new outbreaks are confirmed, the movement licence in place should be extended in order to allow certain movements for slaughter in low risk areas, under certain conditions (specific approval, cleaning and disinfection etc.).

 

Further suspicion within the protection zone

A suspicion of a further outbreak of FMD is being examined in a holding located within the protection zone in the UK, following to the description in animals of clinical signs compatible with the disease. Culling of all animals in the holding has already been ordered.

 

Press release DEFRA-UK 6 August (1)

CVO update on latest situation on FMD outbreak

Chief Veterinary Officer Debby Reynolds today set out latest progress on tackling the Foot and Mouth Disease outbreak in Surrey.

She stressed that the operation continued to focus on containment and eradication of the disease and that livestock keepers should continue to be vigilant and maintain high levels of biosecurity.

Key points set out by Debby Reynolds include:

  • There is currently one Infected Premises. This had animals on three sites. There are two Protection Zones, one of which encompasses Pirbright and the site where the original infected animals were identified. The second Protection Zone encompasses the site where infection was subsequently found. A large Surveillance Zone of 10 kilometres surrounds the two Protection Zones.
  • The cull is now complete. A total of 97 animals have been culled - 64 from the infected premises, plus 33 from two dangerous contact premises. The carcasses have been disposed of by incineration.
  • A major communication effort has been under way in the area. Telephone contact has been made with all known premises in the Protection Zones and approximately 500 packs containing leaflets and letters have been delivered to all known premises in the Protection Zones and most of the premises in the Surveillance Zone. The Defra helpline (08459 335577) is open from 06h00 to 22h00 every day.
  • The HSE-led investigation is progressing rapidly and initial reports are expected imminently. Professor Brian Spratt will begin his review into biosecurity arrangements at the Pirbright site tomorrow. Included in the evidence will be the outcome of the immediate investigation currently being carried out by officials from the HSE, Defra, and the Veterinary Medicines Directorate.
  • As part of Defra's contingency plan and in order to ensure full preparedness, 300,000 doses of strain-specific vaccine have been ordered from the UK's vaccine bank, to be made up from antigen. No decision has been taken on whether or not to use the vaccine.

Debby Reynolds said:

"All of us share the same aim - to eradicate FMD and to minimise the impact on the countryside, farmers and rural communities. We will continue to do all that is necessary to achieve that.

"In line with contingency planning arrangements, we have ordered vaccine production and for vaccination teams to move into the area, this is not an indication that a decision has been taken to vaccinate. It has not.

"Production of vaccine will be carried out at the Merial laboratory, obviously we would not be doing this without careful consideration and assessment of the risks. Producing vaccine from antigen does not involve use of live virus. We are working very closely with the HSE and the Veterinary Medicines Directorate regarding any work at Merial, and they are satisfied that it does not affect their investigation."

Debby Reynolds also paid tribute to the large number of people who worked tirelessly since the outbreak was identified, including Animal Health, operational partners and key stakeholders.

And she stressed that the countryside and footpaths remain open. Whilst some parks, safari parks and other wildlife centres have taken the decision to close or restrict access, neither Defra nor the Department for Culture, Media and Sport is advising that such action is necessary.

Notes to editors

  1. The Defra public helpline is currently operating from 6am-10pm. The public should call: 08459 335577.
  2. Advice from the Health Protection Agency (HPA) is that foot and mouth disease is not a public health threat.
  3. FMD is a disease of cattle and very few human cases have ever been recorded even though the disease is endemic in animals in many parts of the world including Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America. Foot and mouth disease only crosses the species barrier from cattle to human with very great difficulty. The last human case reported in Britain occurred in 1966. The disease in humans, in the very rare cases that have occurred, is mild, short-lived and requires no medical treatment.
  4. The exact details on the measures that apply in Protection and Surveillance Zones can be found on the Defra website at: www.defra.gov.uk/footandmouth/. Disease surveillance is ongoing.
  5. As of 17.00, 5th August 2007, we estimated that there are approximately 750 cattle, 1500 sheep and 200 pigs located on the 75 premises. Final numbers of premises and animals will change as patrols proceed to premises within the Protection Zone.

 

Press release DEFRA-UK 6 August (2)

Further case of Foot and Mouth Disease suspected in Protection Zone

As part of their surveillance activity within the larger Protection Zone in Surrey, Animal Health have identified a further herd of cattle which have clinical signs of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD). Debby Reynolds, Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO), has therefore ordered their slaughter on suspicion of FMD. Animal Health staff are on site and the cull of the animals will begin as soon as practicable. Samples have been taken to the laboratory for testing to confirm disease.

CVO Debby Reynolds said:

"The intensive work of Animal Health has meant that we have been able to rapidly identify this suspect case and take appropriate action swiftly. I continue to urge all animal keepers to be vigilant for signs of disease and practice strict biosecurity."

Notes to editors

  1. The current Protection and Surveillance Zones remain. The exact details of these measures can be found on the Defra website at: www.defra.gov.uk/footandmouth/. Disease surveillance is ongoing.
  2. The Defra public helpline is currently operating from 6am-10pm. The public should call: 08459 335577.
  3. Advice from the Health Protection Agency (HPA) is that foot and mouth disease is not a public health threat.
  4. FMD is a disease of cattle and very few human cases have ever been recorded even though the disease is endemic in animals in many parts of the world including Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America. Foot and mouth disease only crosses the species barrier from cattle to human with very great difficulty. The last human case reported in Britain occurred in 1966. The disease in humans, in the very rare cases that have occurred, is mild, short-lived and requires no medical treatment.

 

Zdroj: UECBV

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