The Pig Clinician And Health Team

To maintain the health of swine, the clinician needs to approach the pig unit with regard to six major areas: 1) biosecurity; 2) pig flow; 3) medicine management;

4) review of current stock health and susceptibilities;

5) competency of the stockpeople; and 6) the provision of an environment conducive to healthy pigs.

Managing the health of pigs on a farm must become the responsibility of a farm health team, which includes a veterinarian. However, the key players are the stock-people. If their training is inadequate, disease recognition will be delayed, with potentially devastating consequences for both the pigs involved and the farm, and even nationally. This was classically demonstrated by the 2001 foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) outbreak in the United Kingdom, where failure of the producer to recognize and report clinical signs of FMD in his pigs to his local veterinarian resulted in the unnecessary deaths of 6 million animals to control the disease.[1]

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