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WP 2010: FMD Outbreak Resources Tested

10 June 2010, at 6:18pm

US - How the US might be able to cope with an outbreak of foot and mouth disease was tested at the start of the World Pork Expo in Des Moines.

A group of 80 representing production agriculture, law enforcement, media and state and federal governments took part in a table top exercise sponsored by the Pork Checkoff.

The exercise simulated a food and mouth disease outbreak in the US.

The event follows recent outbreaks in Japan, which has brought renewed attention on the disease in the US.

Director of swine health for the Pork Checkoff, vet Patrick Webb said the exercise was based on scenarios that required the participants to make decisions, and move equipment and animals on a scale model of a town and farms.

"We know from experience that each decision the participants make and each movement of resources on the table creates new challenges that must be solved," said Dr Webb.

"We have found that it is a very effective way to demonstrate the importance of planning, preparedness and surveillance."