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Biocontainment and Bioexclusion Key to Controlling ASF on Hispaniola

The Executive Director of the Swine Health Information Center suggests maintaining biocontainment and bioexclusion will be key to containing the spread of African Swine Fever on the island of Hispaniola.The island of Hispaniola that includes the Dominican Republic and Haiti presents a substantial risk for the spread of African Swine fever to the North American mainland.

Dr. Paul Sundberg, the Executive Director of the Swine Health Information Center, says eliminating ASF from the island is proving to be challenging.

Clip-Dr. Paul Sundberg-Swine Health Information Center:

The Dominican Republic is going through a process right now of trying to do surveillance necessary to eradicate the disease.USDA has been on the Dominican Republic trying to help with both setting up a regional laboratory as well as the process for immediate response to outbreaks.It will be a big hill to climb for them to get to eradication.

Hopefully that will happen.It will probably be sometime in the future should it happen if it can.In Haiti there are other issues besides ASF that are troubling that country and the infrastructure within Haiti is such that trying to eliminate ASF from Haiti is going to be very difficult.

I think the lesson that we have from the whole island of the Dominican Republic is we have to look to the future of how we help manage the infection and how we help to contain that infection on the island.Biosecurity is all about two issues.

Biosecurity including country biosecurity is about both bioexclusion, keeping it away from you, as well as biocontainment, keeping it where it is and not letting it move.

Dr. Sundberg says we have to apply both of those concepts to the whole island of Hispaniola and the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

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