UK's FMD Contingency Plan 2016

Captain Bryn Wayt made this Freedom of Information request to Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,

I wish to enquire under the FoI Act 2000 about the state of the FMD Contingency Plan for the UK.

Please answer the following questions: my ref is taken from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sy...

QUESTION ONE
Vaccination operations team

47. The Vaccination Operations Team will, through its management of external emergency vaccination suppliers, implement vaccination operations if required. This will include oversight of the deployment of vaccination teams, the supervising veterinary surgeons and supporting management structures with the relevant instructions relating to the type of vaccination campaign being delivered. The team will provide advice and guidance to the commercial contractor and information on vaccination capability and operational arrangements and will ensure contractual obligations are being met and that correct financial information is being recorded.

48. More detail on vaccination is at section 9.

(a)How many “vaccination teams” are available within 24 hours in England at this moment 17 May 2016?
(b)Has any “desk top” exercises been carried out within the last 3 years specifically employing the Vaccinate-to-Live scenario (protective vaccination)?

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QUESTION TWO

Department of Health (DH)
70. The DH role is to provide clear and unambiguous advice on the human health implications of an animal disease outbreak. During an outbreak of exotic notifiable disease of animals, DH will provide strategic guidance and advice on prophylaxis and treatment of people where necessary.

Food Standards Agency (FSA)

72. The FSA is responsible for providing advice to the public concerning implications for the food chain arising from an outbreak of exotic notifiable disease of animals. FSA Operations is responsible for the protection of public and animal health through the proportionate enforcement of legislation in approved fresh meat premises. It is responsible for the delivery of official legislative controls relating to standards of animal welfare and hygiene in slaughterhouses and cutting plants.

(a)Has any move been made in the last 3 years, by the above two organisations, to reassure the General Public (via Press Releases) that it is not harmful eating meat from animals which have been vaccinated against FMD?

(b)Has either of the above organisations informed the General Public (via Press Releases) that there is a “Vaccinate-to-LIVE” policy come an outbreak of proven FMD? Ref: EC directive 2006/14/EC
====================

QUESTION THREE
Sample handling team

99. The Sample Handling Team advises on sampling requirements and coordinates the packing and dispatch of samples to the laboratory. It may include a liaison officer from APHA Weybridge. It works closely with Surveillance and Epidemiology Teams.

(a)What modes of transport have been identified, considering speed is of the essence, to get samples to the Lab/s? Pirbright/Weybridge.

(b)What are the detailed arrangements for flying suspect FMDv samples using commercial aircraft?

===================

QUESTION FOUR
Epidemiology

104. The Field Epidemiology Team contributes to the understanding and control of disease by gathering, collating and interpreting field epidemiological information, considering patterns of disease, assessing risk factors and disseminating this information to the wider NEEG and LDCC teams. It is made up of members of the APHA Epidemiology team and is a key component of the NEEG, reporting to it through the APHA Head of Field Epidemiology in the NEEG in NDCC.

(a)What are the current definitions of: Dangerous Contacts (DC)/Infected Premises (IP)/Slaughter on Suspicion(SoS) and how are they scientifically assessed and the final classification arrived at?
(b)Has the use of “Smart phones” been approved for transmitting on-site images/videos back to Area HQ/DEFRA HQ for group analysis of suspect lesions for higher confidence veterinary analysis?

(c)Has the use of “SKYPE” been authorised for sharing on-site evaluation of suspected FMD infection with NEEG?

==========

QUESTION FIVE
53. During an outbreak, the NEEG provides epidemiological advice and assessment on the determinants, level and distribution of disease to the NEG, other groups and the CVO UK to inform decisions on disease control and prevention measures including vaccination and surveillance.

(a)What ‘model’ (if any) is used for determining the downwind spread of the FMDv?
==========

QUESTION SIX
(a)Have any DEFRA senior managers read this Thesis as an in-house tool in furthering humane formulation of FMD Planning? https://www.researchgate.net/publication...

QUESTION SEVEN
Ref: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2006/...
Trade in vaccinated animals

28. No person shall send any vaccinated animal for trade with another member State, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein.

Given the above, does the UK import any such vaccinated meat from any source?

QUESTION EIGHT
Ref: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2006/...
Given that the above legislation is over 10 years old, is it not time for it to be revisited and updated - for instance at least update the Ben Bradshaw mention?

QUESTION NINE
No mention is made of modern “pen-side” test equipment that enables a vet to confirm the presence or absence of the FMDv.
Given that there is ample proof they are accurate and reliable, why is there no latitude or direction to use them?
(The validation has been “passed and approved” by your very own Pribright Laboratory)

QUESTION 10
Given, “Vaccination is a key countermeasure available to FMD-free countries in case of introduction of the disease.”
Can DEFRA give any indication on the net worth that Project SE2811 (£1.973 million) along with SE1120 (£396,290), SE1123 (£355,942) and SE1124 (£649,627) have distilled into the UK’s ability to deal with an FMD outbreak, as 10 years have past without a tangible change in the government's FMD Contingency Plan?

I hope to hear from you in due course and thank you in advance.

Yours sincerely

Captain Bryn Wayt

Helpline, Defra (CCU), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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Information Requests (DEFRA), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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Dear Captain Wayt
 
Please find attached an acknowledgement letter for your request for
information received on  17 May 2016.
 
Kind Regards
 
 
Marie Davies
 
Marie Davies
Information Rights Team
[1][email address]
 
 
 

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)

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If you have received it in error you have no authority to use, disclose,
store or copy any of its contents and you should destroy it and inform the
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Whilst this email and associated attachments will have been checked for
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Communications on Defra's computer systems may be monitored and/or
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Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Information Requests (DEFRA),

I know you are probably behind on a few FoI Act enquiries, but it is now a month since you received my questions, and as I type, there's been no answers with the stated 20 days.

I would appreciate it if some hastening action could be taken if possible.

Yours sincerely,

Captain Bryn Wayt

Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Information Requests (DEFRA),

I regret having to remind you of your TWO failures so far on this request:

1. You have failed in the "aim" as stated - we aim to answer your request within 20 working days from the date we received it (i.e. by 18 June 2016).

AND

2. You have failed to keep me "fully informed" as stated - If for any reason we are unable to meet this deadline, we will keep you fully informed of the reasons for this.

I have been very patient but now I am getting annoyed. Please hasten the request and tell me why you have failed the two pledges.

Yours sincerely,

Captain Bryn Wayt

Information Requests (DEFRA), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

1 Attachment

Dear Captain Wayt,
 
Please find enclosed a copy of our response to your request for
information, and our apologies for the delay in responding to your
request.
Kind regards,
Matthew Hirst | FOI/EIRs Officer | Information Rights Team | Commercial,
Estates and Knowledge I Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
 

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)

This email and any attachments is intended for the named recipient only.
If you have received it in error you have no authority to use, disclose,
store or copy any of its contents and you should destroy it and inform the
sender.
Whilst this email and associated attachments will have been checked for
known viruses whilst within Defra systems we can accept no responsibility
once it has left our systems.
Communications on Defra's computer systems may be monitored and/or
recorded to secure the effective operation of the system and for other
lawful purposes.