International animal health authorities have stated that disease surveillance in livestock and poultry has as its main purpose the early detection of diseases and disease outbreaks. APHIS has worked closely with states and industry over the past decades to eradicate diseases by, for example, providing states with funding and guidance. But the disease landscape has changed,
with rapid global movement of humans and animals, creating new threats.
GAO was asked to review federal animal disease surveillance efforts.
This report examines (1) USDA's new approach to disease surveillance in light of a changing disease landscape and challenges, if any, the agency faces with this approach and (2) the extent to which this approach is guided by a strategy with measurable goals and supports broader national biosurveillance efforts. GAO reviewed relevant presidential directives, laws,
regulations, guidance, policies,
documents, and strategic plans related to disease surveillance in animals;
visited swine facilities; and interviewed federal, state, and industry veterinarians and other officials.
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