SHIC-Funded Global Swine Disease Monitoring Report Delivers Near-Real Time Disease Info

The US pork industry remains vulnerable to the introduction of a variety of foreign animal and production diseases. The Swine Health Information Center (SHIC) recognized the importance of developing systems to provide international situational awareness in near-real time for these pathogens, and funded a near real-time Global Swine Disease Monitoring Report (GSDMR) system to collect and disseminate this information. In particular, the project has tracked the expansion of African swine fever (ASF) through Asia and Europe. And a new “Focus on…” section will raise awareness about specific international swine disease risks. The GSDMR project was recently reviewed by SHIC and funding renewed so it will continue through 2021.

Launched in December 2017, more than 50 GSDMRs have contributed valuable data to industry stakeholders as diseases such as ASF, classical swine fever (CSF), and foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) have impacted other countries. The new element of the reports, “Focus on…” provides comprehensive snapshots of current knowledge of swine infectious diseases throughout selected regions. It will soon be available online in the format of dashboards updated regularly.

To create the reports, the team at the University of Minnesota has developed a private-public-academic partnership to support a system for near real-time identification of hazards that will contribute to the mission of assessing risks to the industry. Identified hazards are scored using a step-wise procedure of screening, to identify emerging infectious diseases that, potentially, may represent a risk for the US swine industry. A combination of soft and official data is actively and passively collected then organized.

Following successive screening steps in which data and information were synthesized, edited, corrected, and expanded in collaboration with selected stakeholders, a report describing the outputs has been available on a routine basis. In addition to the three USDA-classified tier 1 reportable foreign animal disease of swine (ASF, CSF, and FMD), reports for significant changes in the epidemiological situation of production diseases such as porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) and pseudorabies disease (PRV), have also been included. 

GSDMRs are available on the SHIC website (https://www.swinehealth.org/global-disease-surveillance-reports/) and are included in the organization’s monthly enewsletter.

As the world deals with the COVID-19 pandemic, SHIC continues to focus efforts on prevention, preparedness, and response to novel and emerging swine disease for the benefit of US swine health. As a conduit of information and research, SHIC encourages sharing of its publications and research. Forward, reprint, and quote SHIC material freely. SHIC is funded by America’s pork producers to fulfill its mission to protect and enhance the health of the US swine herd. For more information, visit http://www.swinehealth.org or contact Dr. Sundberg at psundberg@swinehealth.org.