Recent years have seen an enormous growth in the study of animal diseases. It has become increasingly important to monitor the movement of animals across borders and to constantly re-evaluate national policies on border regulation as the world marketplace grows.
Public safety is the main concern here. Animals that are brought in from other nations must be processed according to federal regulations to ensure that animal diseases not endemic (already present) to a region are not introduced causing epidemics or pandemics such as the recent H1N1 outbreak.
As soon as officials were aware of the outbreak, State and Federal regulation offices were on daily conference calls with specialists in veterinary medicine, bacteriology, and biochemistry. School and State officials coordinated on a constant basis to maintain the outbreak and prevent the spread of disease.
This was a concerted effort conducted by a vast array of professionals and specialists. It may be hard for the general public to realize what a group effort goes on behind the scenes with our State, Federal, and academic officials but without them we would definitely all be in a much more vulnerable position when these threats present. We need only look back a few centuries to witness the global effects that disease and plagues can have on humanity and animals alike. The Mad Cow Disease outbreak in Great Britain only a few years ago resulted in the slaughter of millions of infected animals. The demand for veterinary scientists, biochemists, bacteriologists, epidemiologists, and other specialists will only continue to increase as the market expands.
Dr. Elizabeth White
Veterinary Science Information Technologies
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