Published Date: 2022-09-29 20:49:56 BST
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Foot & mouth disease - Indonesia (14): (BA) livestock, RFI
Archive Number: 20220929.8705850
FOOT & MOUTH DISEASE - INDONESIA (14): (BALI) LIVESTOCK, REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
A ProMED-mail post http://www.promedmail.org
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases http://www.isid.org
Date: Sun 25 Sep 2022
Source: ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) News [abridged, edited]
Bali's Agriculture and Food Security office claims the island has been free of FMD for almost 2 months. The last officially reported case in Bali was on 1 Aug .
But the ABC has seen and filmed cattle with clear signs of FMD this month [September 2022] in separate areas of Bali. Farmers have reported cattle with symptoms consistent with the disease, including foaming at the mouth, poor appetite, and swollen feet. And officials in Denpasar have also confirmed to the ABC that more than 60 cattle were slaughtered in the 1st week of September  because of the disease.
A senior Agriculture official says Bali slaughtered 556 cows with FMD in July , swiftly eliminated a small cluster of cases in Denpasar in August , and now has zero cases. But one Indonesian virologist, who did not wish to be named, says he strongly doubts the claims that Bali is free of the disease. And an Australian vet said it is not possible to eliminate FMD as quickly as Indonesian officials have claimed.
"I believe it's the 2nd-most infectious disease known to science," said Ross Ainsworth, a vet who has previously worked for decades in Australia's live cattle trade, and now spends considerable time in Bali. "The policy of the government here is to not talk about the disease and hope that it will sort of fade from interest. It's just so infectious that it will be here, and it will be here for a long time."
Bali also appears to be under pressure to eliminate the disease before the island hosts world leaders for the annual G20 summit in mid-November .
The ABC has seen and filmed more cattle with foaming mouths and foot lesions at Karangasem in Bali's east. Karangasem was one of several regions confirmed to have had FMD in June and July this year , after authorities first detected it in Bali.
Yet, no cases in Bali have been officially reported to a national foot-and-mouth task force since 1 Aug .
However, many owners are not able to confirm a FMD diagnosis or arrange treatment because they cannot afford it.
Australia has supplied one million vaccines to Indonesia, most of which the ABC has been told are already being rolled out in Bali and islands further east where the disease is also spreading. The islands of Sumba and Sumbawa are now classified as a "red zone."
But national figures suggest 7 other provinces have also returned to zero cases, after previously reporting cases of FMD.
Despite initial fears the disease could reach Australia for the 1st time in 150 years, Ross Ainsworth believes the threat of the disease spreading from Bali is now much lower than it was.
"I initially was extremely concerned that this disease was going to get to Australia. I thought it was perhaps a 50-50 chance," he said. "But now both of those things have changed. I think the threat is much lower."
Indonesia successfully eradicated an outbreak of FMD in the 1980s, largely through vaccination. Mr Ainsworth says it is feasible that Bali, at least, if not other provinces, could do so again.
"It was eradicated many years ago with vaccinations only. So maybe it's possible," he said.
[Byline: Anne Barker, Phil Hemingway]
[Indonesia submitted to the WOAH its initial immediate notification of its FMD event, caused by FMDV O/ME-SA/Ind-2001e, on 9 May 2022 (2 ongoing outbreaks), indicating that the disease had started on 12 Apr 2022. A single follow-up report (FUR) was submitted on 23 Jun 2022 (19 ongoing outbreaks), indicating that the event was "ongoing" (https://wahis.woah.org/#/in-event/4448/dashboard). Reportedly, the disease affected mainly cattle but also buffaloes, sheep, goats, and swine. Bali was not mentioned among the affected territories.
According to WOAH's Terrestrial Code, FURs should be submitted each week until the termination of the event. In the absence of official, internationally obligatory documentation from Indonesia since late June 2022, the actual situation of this major FMD event remains ambiguous. Firsthand, science-based information from knowledgeable source(s) will be appreciated. - Mod.AS
ProMED map of Bali, Indonesia: https://promedmail.org/promed-post?place=8705850,556]