The Northern Ireland Veterinary Association (NIVA) and the BVA have welcomed the review into bovine tuberculosis (bTB) by the Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture and Rural Development Committee (ARD).

The Northern Ireland Veterinary Association (NIVA) and the BVA have welcomed the review into bovine tuberculosis (bTB) by the Northern Ireland Assembly’s Agriculture and Rural Development Committee (ARD).

NIVA and the BVA also highlighted the importance of the role of veteCowrinary surgeons in delivering an effective bTB strategy, and particularly welcomed the following recommendations contained in the report:

  1. The call for the Government to have a specific target to eradicate TB, rather than just controlling the disease (recommendation 8)
  2. The need to utilise the expertise of local veterinary practices in partnership with farmers (recommendation 2)
  3. The focus on improving communication to ensure the limitations of the testing regime were understood well enough to make risk-based decisions (recommendation 5)
  4. The need for DARD to carry out scoping work for the test, vaccinate or remove (TVR) policy to identify and address potential weaknesses in the model
  5. The need for better understanding through detailed epidemiological studies to understand the risk factors and reinvigorated biosecurity training and advice (recommendations 11-14)

BVA president Peter Jones added: “The committee has clearly recognised the value of the veterinary profession – both in research and on the ground – in bTB eradication.

“The recommendation that DARD commits to an eradication policy, rather than a control policy, makes a lot of sense and helps all stakeholders to look towards the future.

“We look forward to seeing DARD’s response.”

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