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Working towards consensus: the need for coordinated policies to assist control of foot and mouth disease and emerging disease threats in South-East Asia

Author(s) : I.W. Patrick, S. Sovann & S. Socheat

Summary :

Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is an important transboundary disease in South-East Asia. Its control has been a priority in the region for at least 20 years, with extensive institutional support and capacity-building being provided by the international community through the World Organisation for Animal Health. This paper describes the FMD control and eradication programme in the Mekong region (Myanmar, Thailand, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Cambodia and Vietnam) of South-East Asia and evaluates the FMD control programme in one of the region’s countries, namely Cambodia. Significant progress has been made, and the strategy for eradication is now both clearly understood and feasible in the Mekong. However, FMD control in this region requires more than just an effective vaccination strategy and regulatory support. Success will also depend on obtaining consensus and buy-in at all levels of the value chain, from input suppliers to consumers. Culturally and economically acceptable incentives must be in place to ensure that control measures are implemented, and those stakeholders who are expected to bear the risk and costs of control programmes must also be the main beneficiaries. The present institutional environment in the Mekong, and in particular in Cambodia, makes control and eradication of transboundary diseases difficult.


Cambodia – Cattle – Foot and mouth disease – Governance – Institutions – Mekong – Smallholders – South-East Asia.

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