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Equine disease surveillance: quarterly update

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Equine disease surveillance headlines

  • Contagious equine metritis confirmed in Scotland

  • First outbreak of equine influenza in the UK in 2020

  • Summary of UK disease surveillance for January to March 2020

Recent international disease outbreaks

African horse sickness in Thailand

This is the first report of African horse sickness in south-east Asia, and the first detection of AHS serotype 1 outside the African continent

The first cases of African horse sickness (AHS) have been confirmed in Thailand. This is the first time that AHS has been reported in south-east Asia and the first detection of AHS serotype 1 outside the African continent.

The outbreak has seen a very high infection and fatality rate. As of 27 April 2020, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) reported seven outbreaks involving 88 cases, of which 64 had died.

An article discussing the potential threat posed by AHS to the UK and describing how the UK would respond to a confirmed case was published in VR, 26 October 2019 (vol 185, pp 501-503).

Defra’s AHS Control Strategy for Great Britain can be found at

About this report

This report is produced by Defra, the Animal Health Trust (AHT) and the British Equine Veterinary Association. It is a shortened version of the full report for the quarter. The full report and all previous reports can be accessed on the AHT’s website at

This report collates equine disease data arising from multiple diagnostic laboratories and veterinary practices throughout the UK. The data presented are taken from various sources and must be interpreted with caution, as there is likely to be some bias in the way that samples are submitted for laboratory testing. For example, they are influenced by factors such as owner attitude or financial constraints, or are submitted for routine screening as well as clinical investigation purposes. Consequently, these data do not necessarily reflect true disease frequency in …

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