A joint FAO and World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) mission travelled to North Korea at the government's request between 27 February and 8 March. The mission found that the country's capacity and that of veterinary services to detect and contain FMD outbreaks need significant strengthening -- in particular as regards implementing best-practices in biosecurity measures and improving laboratory infrastructure and capacity.
Outbreaks of Type-O FMD have been reported in diverse locations in eight of North Korea's 13 provinces. To bring the situation under control, the team recommended the following steps:
• Thorough surveillance to locate and map disease clusters
• Protecting unaffected farms through movement controls and biosecurity measures
• Adequate sampling in order to correctly identify the virus strain or strains involved
• Improving biosecurity measures to prevent further spread of the disease
• The strategic use of the appropriate vaccines to contain and isolate disease clusters
FAO estimates around $1 million is required immediately for training, supplies and infrastructure, vaccine acquisition and the setting up of monitoring, reporting and response systems.