Creed launches Animal Health Surveillance Website

30 August 2018


The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed T.D, today officially launched the Animal Health Surveillance website at Agriculture House, Kildare St.

In July 2017, Minister Creed launched the National Farmed Animal Health Strategy, which encompassed a number of initiatives including the Animal Health Surveillance Strategy.  A key recommendation in the strategy was that a dedicated animal health surveillance website be developed to provide timely and accurate information to relevant stakeholders.

Animal Health Surveillance has been defined as the systematic collection, collation, analysis interpretation and dissemination of animal health and welfare data from defined populations.  This process is essentially about gathering intelligence to detect either novel animal health related events or increases in animal health related events as early as possible to better inform risk management at all levels within the industry. 

Surveillance is a key factor in protecting, maintaining and improving our animal health status, thereby maximising the economic return for farmers from their animals, while helping to maintain high animal welfare standards.

The animal health related events of interest may include:

  • the incursion of an exotic disease, such as Foot and Mouth disease,
  • the re-emergence of a disease which was previously eradicated such as brucellosis

or a spike in an endemic disease such as mastitis in dairy cows, pneumonia in beef cattle, or liver fluke in sheep. 

  • From a trade perspective, it is hugely important to demonstrate freedom from specific diseases, such as Bluetongue.  The demonstration of freedom from such diseases requires the provision of objective evidence, upon which such declarations can be made.

Speaking at today’s launch Minister Creed stated that;

“Today’s farmers need information to manage risk in all aspects of their businesses, including maintaining the health of their animals.  Strategies to manage animal health risk include vaccination, strategic dosing for parasites and good biosecurity practices.  But to make such decisions effectively farmers must be well informed. To facilitate improving farmer’s understanding of disease risk, DAFM has developed a surveillance website to help ensure that ongoing, accurate animal health related information is provided to all relevant stakeholders”.

The website can also be promoted as a shop-window through which our high animal health status can be appreciated. It allows potential trading partners to develop a positive appreciation of our systems, as well as providing animal health information to our existing trading partners. In line with the goals of FoodWise 2025 and increasing market access to new trade partners, the website has the potential to be used as a marketing tool by Irish trade delegations when promoting Irish produce abroad.

The website, drawn up in consultation with stakeholders, will actas a central repository for information on surveillance activities and disease programmes undertaken in Ireland.   This repository will provide the type of information that can be utilised by farmers and veterinary practitioners to help raise disease awareness thus helping to maximise the economic return to farmers from their animals whilst also helping to maintain high standards of animal welfare.

The website can be accessed through the following link http://www.animalhealthsurveillance.agriculture.gov.ie/

 Added 30.08.2018

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed T.D, today officially launched the Animal Health Surveillance website. L-R: Damien Barrett Superintendent Veterinary Officer and Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed T.D.

ENDS

 

Date Released: 30 August 2018

Original Press Release, click here