World Organisation for Animal Health

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Animal Health in the World - Overview

One of OIE’s missions is to ensure transparency in and enhance knowledge of the worldwide animal health situation, including zoonoses. Among the formal obligations of OIE Member Countries is the submission of information on the relevant animal disease situation – including on zoonoses present on their territory - in the most timely and transparent way. To accomplish its mandate in this respect, the OIE created and manages the World Animal Health Information System (WAHIS) which is coupled with the World Animal Health Information Database (WAHID) interface. WAHID Interface provides public access to all data held into WAHIS database as soon as they are validated by the OIE. This extensive database is a cornerstone in OIE efforts to improve the transparency, efficiency and speed with which animal health information is disseminated throughout the world.

Additional to WAHID, specific pages have been created in this section for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), for the convenience of immediate stakeholders and other interested parties in these important zoonotic diseases. These pages display a permanently updated situation as soon as new information is provided by Member Countries to the OIE.

Official recognition of animal disease status: BSE, CBPP, FMD and rinderpest

This section also contains detailed information on the OIE official procedures on the recognition of animal disease status for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) risks, contagious bovine pleuropneumonia (CBPP), foot and mouth disease (FMD) and rinderpest. In addition, it contains information on OIE’s officially recognised statuses of Member Countries or territories for the four previously mentioned diseases.

This procedure of official recognition by the OIE of disease status goes back to May 1994, when the World Assembly of Delegates of the OIE requested the Foot and Mouth Disease and Other Epizootics Commission (now called the Scientific Commission for Animal Diseases) to develop a procedure for the official recognition by the OIE of the foot and mouth disease free status of Member Countries. The procedure has since been expanded to include rinderpest, contagious bovine pleuropneumonia and bovine spongiform encephalopathy. In 1998, the official agreement between the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the OIE further confirmed the OIE’s mandate to recognise disease and pest-free areas for trade purposes, in the context of the WTO Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. By acquiring and maintaining its official status, a country demonstrates transparency and helps to promote animal health and public health worldwide, thereby gaining the trust of its trade partners, neighbouring countries and the international community as a whole.