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Health Authorities Say Itís Contained

Results from the Central Regional Laboratory in Merida, Yucatan have indicated the presence of bovine tuberculosis on bacteriological culture sent to them by the Belize Agricultural health Authority (BAHA). In a release issued today, BAHA has assured the stakeholders of the agriculture sector and the public in general that they have further strengthened its standard disease control measures.

It adds that through the Belize National Sanitary Cattle Plan Project, BAHA has been identifying cattle farms and cattle in Belize while ensuring that tests for the bovine tuberculosis and bovine brucellosis are conducted. Bovine tuberculosis is a chronic disease of animals caused by a bacteria called mycobacterium bovis which is closely related to the bacteria that causes human and avian tuberculosis.

So far, over ninety thousand cattle have been tested and all results have proven negative with the exception of the one case that was positive. But before you get alarmed, it is noteworthy that this is not the first time this disease has been in Belize as there was an outbreak in 1991. While the bovine tuberculosis outbreak is considered contained and the risk to animals and humans is insignificant, as part of its precautionary measures,

The Ministry of Health and BAHA are reminding producers that it is their responsibility to ensure that their farms are registered, their cattle identified and that they acquire the necessary documents and permits for any movements of their cattle from their farms. For further information you can contact the BAHA helpline at 605-2100 or at 824-4899.