Bolivia, Venezuela, Ecuador, high risk areas for foot and mouth disease
Bolivia, Venezuela and Ecuador are considered endemic foot and mouth disease regions according to the Pan-American FAM office, Panaftosa, which keeps track of the disease in the continent and has its main offices in Brazil.“After a long decade of effort and hard work, 85% of the cattle herd in South America is free of foot and mouth disease, be it with or without vaccination”, said Dr. Ottorino Cosivi head of Panaftosa during a visit to Paraguay.
He added that such achievement should be the foundation for a complete eradication of the disease in the continent.
“But we also have standing risk areas which are Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia, countries with which Panaftosa wants to increase its technical cooperation”, said Dr. Cosivi. “They represent a risk not only for themselves but also for neighbours”.
As to the high vigilance zones (ZAV) which cover a strip 15 kilometres deep along Paraguay’s borders (with Argentina, Brazil and Bolivia), Cosivi said the implementation has been enforced for several years now “and currently we have technical discussions with our own scientists and with countries involved, but definitively there’s no date to lift ZAVs”.
Panaftosa chief also pointed out that countries with the greatest sanitary problems are those where relations between the government and private sector are less developed.
“Here in Paraguay I’ve seen an excellent collaboration between the government and the cattle ranchers, livestock breeders and this is the policy Panaftosa has always supported, because it gives combating FAM the necessary political backing”, said Dr. Cosivi.
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