Thanks for the question. I do believe that PPR and FMD control and surveillance efforts can benefit from sharing the field experience, methodology, and networks put in place separately for the two diseases. For example, some risk mapping and modelling tools and training material are already used and adapted in parallel for the two diseases. Also, it may be more efficient and easier to implement control and surveillance effort of a disease using a network of vet, paravet and community animal health workers already put in place for surveillance and control of another disease.
This is not limited to PPR and FMD but to global and regional control efforts aimed at other livetsock diseases.
Thanks for the question. Good knowledge of animal mobility is key to evaluate risk of PPR emergence and implement the most adapted surveillance effort. Also, it is important that veterinary services are well aware of the disease, its symptoms, and the best samples to collect for lab analysis. It is will enable quick detection of a PPR outbreak and rapid implementation of control measures.
In countries with extensive uncontrolled transboundary movements of small ruminants (for example in Sahel), surveys with farmers, herders, and pastoralists may help for a better understanding of their husbandry practices, how they change with time and seasons, because it adds key qualitative an/or quantitative data to official governmental data on animal trade. Engagement of livestock owners is key for efficient surveillance (notably for the passive surveillance component of surveillance strategies).
The risk can change with time and circonstances, depending on the region. Small ruminant trade can fluctuate with demand. For example, the major muslim celebration Eid is associated with huge transboundary movements of small ruminants, and therefore increased risk of PPR spread. There is also seasonality in PPR circulation in many countries where PPR is endemic. Good knowledge of animal mobility and PPR epidemiology in the region is necessary to evaluate risk of spread to neighbouring countries that are free of PPR.
I gave a reply in the live session for this question. In addition to the challeges I mentionned (transboundary movements, logistics of vaccination in remote areas and at the regional level), I would add the challenge of engaging livestock owners in vaccination. Working on willingness to vaccinate and establishing value chains that benefit communties will help increase vaccination coverage in many endemic countries.
The EURL for PPR organises annual PT for national reference labs of EU member states and collaborating neighbouring countries. OIE/FAO ref labs also organise PT, sometimes annually. However, there is a need for better information sharing on these international PTs so labs in the world can access and participate. Results of PT are usually quite good. However, when improved diagnostic methods are made available, it may take time for labs to adopt them.
Active and passive surveillance to identify animals with symptoms of PPR is very important for rapid detection an control. It will allow rapid detection of emergence in a PPR-free country or after vaccination campaign. Suspicions in the field need to be confirmed in the lab as PPR symptoms are similar to other small ruminant diseases (BTV, CCPP etc...). Now penside tests are also available, improve the capacity to confirm outbreaks rapidly and start taking measures while waiting for further lab confirmation.