USDA/APHIS Releases CWD Program Standards Summary

United States Department of Agriculture's APHIS Veterinary Services (VS) has released the Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Program Standards Working Group Summary Document for review and comment. This document summarizes the work of a 12-member working group that included representatives from the farmed cervid industry, State animal health and wildlife officials, a prion science specialist, and VS representatives. The group met in person for 3 days and continued discussions over a series of six conference calls.

The objectives of the working group were to identify changes that APHIS should consider for the CWD Program Standards and to describe additional options to consider for compliance with 9 CFR 55 and 81. Specific discussion topics included clarifying the purpose of the program standards, certified herd surveillance and compliance requirements, definitions, CWD susceptible species, ante-mortem testing, carcass disposal, epidemiology investigations and reporting, indemnity prioritization, and requirements for interstate transport of wild-caught cervids.

The full text of the document may be found on the Cervid Health website: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/animal-disease-in....

Please submit written feedback by November 15, 2016 to:  vs.sprs.cervid.health@aphis.usda.gov.

VS will use the working group summary and stakeholder comments to revise the current CWD Program Standards by early 2017. The revised program standards will then be published in the Federal Register for comment prior to release.