The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) has welcomed the government’s recent announcement of increased funding for disease surveillance as part of a $137.8 million investment in biosecurity.
President of the AVA, Dr Paula Parker, said that general disease surveillance is important to maintain Australia’s favourable animal health status and for the early detection of animal disease outbreaks.
“Emergency animal diseases are a significant threat to animal industries and we look forward to seeing greater use of private veterinary practitioners to support animal disease surveillance and investigation to protect animal industries and public health,” Dr Parker said.
“We commend the government on investing in initiatives to prevent incursions of diseases, such as foot-and-mouth, by strengthening border surveillance technologies.”
As Australia’s agricultural sector looks set to reach its goal of a $100 billion industry by 2030, investment in biosecurity is essential.
“This is an asset that the government must protect,” Dr Parker said. “Every dollar spent on prevention and preparedness protects against potential billions in losses.”
The AVA has also commended the surveillance initiative in northern Australia but has stressed the need for ongoing support from government veterinarians and diagnostic laboratories in supporting this work.
“The role of veterinarians is critical to effective disease surveillance and response capabilities,” Dr Parker said. “We look forward to the government implementing these initiatives.”
Based on a media release sourced from the AVA website.