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Animal Health at the Crossroads: Preventing, Detecting, and Diagnosing Animal Diseases
ment then to ignore the need for diagnostic testing before animals were destroyed. Traditional FMDV control methods, targeting the killing of animals from infected premises and epidemiologically determined dangerous contact premises, were used through late March, after which time additional control measures were introduced. These measures included depopulation based only on suspicion of infection; destroying sheep, goats, and pigs within 3 kilometers of infected premises in some counties; and destroying animals on all premises contiguous to an infected premise within 48 hours regardless of health status of the animals. The 48-hour depopulation policy was and remains a controversial component of the U.K. control effort, and therefore was not consistently accepted. The policy, developed in large part based on computer model simulations of hypothetical disease transmission, has in retrospect been credited with the large number of noninfected animals destroyed during the 2001 epidemic and with the public’s negative response to the highly visible control efforts (Haydon et al., 2004). From the published lessons identified and formal recommendations in commissioned reports (National Audit Office, 2001; Royal Society, 2002), it can be concluded that:
The lack of early detection allowed FMD to become widespread in the United Kingdom.
Outbreak planning with established, scientifically consistent policies and protocols defined prior to the outbreak or disease event are necessary for effective prevention, diagnosis, and response.
FMDV in Other Countries
Unlike the United Kingdom, the Netherlands chose to respond to the related 2001 incursion of FMDV into its herds with an emergency vaccination program (Tomasson et al., 2002; Bouma et al., 2003). The program was successful in the Netherlands and is cited as justification for the emergency use of FMDV vaccination during an outbreak, despite the after-affects of restricted trade when all vaccinated animals are not subsequently destroyed (Haydon et al., 2004). The criticisms of vaccinating in the face of an outbreak include the current lack of a validated assay or technology that would allow for the differentiation of animals exposed to FMD vaccine from those animals exposed to the live virus. The potential for an exposed and vaccinated animal to become a subclinical FMD virus carrier, capable of disease spread, is a significant concern for trade partners in FMD-free countries following an FMD outbreak in vaccinating countries. Technologies utilizing animal serum to test for their response to portions of the replicating FMD virus, termed nonstructural protein assays, have been developed in recent years but have not yet been evalu-