Source: Swine Health Information Center
Swine Health Information Center Executive Director Paul Sundberg presented the 2017 Annual Report and the Center’s accomplishments at the National Pork Board meeting on Jan. 9. The report was accepted and the organization’s efforts to protect and enhance the health of the U.S. swine herd by providing return on the investment made in the Center validated.
“Each year by design, the Swine Health Information Center provides a report to National Pork Board on its progress over the last year,” says Terry O’Neel, National Pork Board president from Friend, Neb. “The SHIC report was given unanimous approval. The work that SHIC has performed in 2017 brings the U.S. pork industry closer to being prepared and having a rapid response plan in place in case of a major animal disease outbreak.
“SHIC is working on data warehouses that will provide swine disease monitoring while maintaining confidentiality for producers. Ethically, we have a responsibility to our U.S. swine herd to monitor and protect ourselves from foreign and emerging animal diseases. It is also paramount to the economic survival of our pork industry to avoid a foreign animal disease because of the extreme importance of being able to continue exporting U.S. pork in the global marketplace.”
Operating with transparency, and accountable to the producers who fund SHIC’s activities, the 2017 Annual Report contains detailed information on all the organization’s activities. It is available for review and comment at SwineHealth.org.
Guided by the 2017 Plan of Work, SHIC’s resources were focused on urgent return-on-investment projects to monitor, predict, prepare and respond to emerging diseases. SHIC complements programs of other pork industry producer and veterinarian organizations as it acts quickly and urgently regarding swine health by providing its coordinated, valuable deliverables to investors. Among the key accomplishments are:
• Implementation of near real-time domestic and global swine disease monitoring processes
• Development of a communications action plan in the event of novel disease discovery
• Launching a Rapid Response Program with a trained Rapid Response Corps to make site visits on farms with novel disease incidents
• Funding diagnostic assistance to make sure emerging diseases won’t go undiscovered
• Providing diagnostic tools for foreign animal diseases posing a threat
• Maintaining the Swine Disease Matrix that prioritizes disease risks to the U.S. pork industry
Emerging diseases remain the primary concern for SHIC. These include diseases being introduced into the United States, an example of which is the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus outbreak in 2013, or endemic diseases already present but changed in some manner with significant health and/or profitability impacts, such as Seneca Valley A which emerged in 2015.
Continuing to deliver relevant and useful tools, programs, and resources, SHIC’s 2018 Plan of Work will be set by the organization’s Board of Directors using input from the industry and appropriate follow-up to the 2017 plan. The 2018 Plan of Work will be posted on the SHIC following the organization’s board meeting in late-January.
Funded by America’s pork producers to protect and enhance the health of the U.S. swine herd, SHIC focuses its efforts on prevention, preparedness and response. As a conduit of information and research, SHIC encourages sharing of its publications and research for the benefit of swine health. For more information, visit SwineHealth.org or contact Sundberg.