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Tuesday, 16 July, 2002, 11:04 GMT 12:04 UK
At-a-glance: Foot-and-mouth report
Foot and mouth, PA
Vaccination could contain any future outbreak
The first of two major reports into the UK Government's handling of the foot-and-mouth epidemic is published on Tuesday by the Royal Society.

This scientific inquiry into last year's outbreak was ordered after almost seven million animals were culled. The epidemic is thought to have cost the nation 8bn.

Here are the key findings in the report:

  • There should be a policy of mass vaccination within a 10- kilometre (six miles) radius of any future outbreak.

  • Marker tests need to be carried out after vaccination to weed out infected animals.

  • Culling of animals on the infected premises should be carried out within 24 hours.

  • All livestock which have been in contact with infected premises should be culled within 48 hours.

  • Apart from culling, there should be local movement bans if there is suspicion of the disease.

  • On identification of an outbreak, all UK movement of livestock should be banned within 72 hours.

  • Vaccination was not used in 2001 due to fears the policy would harm exports, but changes to the rules means vaccination would not delay the resumption of exports any longer than a slaughter control policy.

  • Further research is needed to ensure Britain is protected against future outbreaks of foot and mouth.

  • A Centre of Exotic Animal Diseases, independent of the government, should be set up at a cost of between 220m and 250m.

  • If another outbreak occurs contingency plans should be "debated openly in Parliament" and not emerge from the "depths" of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

  • Emergency procedures should be rehearsed every year.



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16 Jul 02 | Science/Nature
16 Jul 02 | Science/Nature
16 Jul 02 | UK
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