Vets welcome ‘sensible’ measures to increase frequency of TB testing - Veterinary Practice
Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


Vets welcome ‘sensible’ measures to increase frequency of TB testing

Defra has announced that bovine TB testing in cattle in the
High Risk Area (HRA) of England will increase in frequency
to once every six months. The announcement comes in
an effort to more quickly identify and eradicate bTB in
England’s cattle herds. In the announcement, Defra also
stated that testing can remain on an annual basis for those
herds that have gone five or more years without disease or
for farms that have been accredited under the industry-led
Cattle Herd Certification Standards (CHeCS) scheme, which
requires a raft of biosecurity measures to be in place.

Measures have also been announced on compensation
arrangements for infected animals (pigs, sheep, goats, deer
and camelids) that have to be slaughtered.

BVA president, John Fishwick, comments: “We believe
increasing the frequency of testing to every six months in
the High Risk Area is a very sensible measure, enabling
earlier identification of bTB, which will not only provide
farmers more certainty on the disease status of a herd but
should help in the eradication of this devastating disease.

“The compensation for the slaughter of infected animals
is necessary, and we support the move to reduce this
compensation for animals that are unclean when brought
for slaughter. However, we cannot support the delayed
slaughter of pregnant cattle that test positive for bTB, as retaining an infected animal on a farm would introduce
a significant risk of transmission of disease to healthy
livestock. We continue to support a comprehensive and
evidence-based approach to tackling bTB and welcome the
re-commencement of the Badger Edge Vaccination Scheme,
particularly if used as a ‘firebreak’ to mitigate the spread of
the disease into the low-risk areas.”

In order to increase vaccination of badgers, the
government is offering grants under the Badger Edge
Vaccination Scheme. This will re-commence this year and
aims to create a buffer zone between the highest and
lowest risk areas of England.

Have you heard about our
IVP Membership?

A wide range of veterinary CPD and resources by leading veterinary professionals.

Stress-free CPD tracking and certification, you’ll wonder how you coped without it.

Discover more