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Joelle Schelhaus  (301) 734-0595
Angela Harless   (202) 720-4623
 
USDA RELEASES NATIONAL ANIMAL IDENTIFICATION SYSTEM VETERINARIAN’S TOOLKIT

WASHINGTON, Dec. 18, 2008--The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) today released A Veterinarian’s Toolkit for use with the National Animal Identification System (NAIS).  The online toolkit provides veterinarians with quick access to NAIS program information and resources.

“When it comes to the health of their animals, farmers and ranchers trust their veterinarians to provide them with accurate information and solid guidance,” said Dr. John Clifford, deputy administrator for APHIS’ veterinary services program.  “This toolkit equips veterinarians with the most up-to-date information about the importance of NAIS and the role it plays in disease traceability, as well as provides the resources and tools needed to answer their clients’ questions.”

A Veterinarian’s Toolkit was developed for veterinarians by veterinarians.  The toolkit includes useful information for accredited veterinarians, including an introduction to NAIS and a reference guide that explains how NAIS works. The toolkit also includes factsheets and conversation starter tips to help accredited veterinarians deliver information about NAIS to their clients.

"Our accredited vets are critical in their efforts to protect and improve the health and quality of U.S. animals by preventing, controlling or eradicating livestock and poultry diseases that negatively affect producers and consumers in the United States," said Clifford.  “This toolkit gives them the information they need to help us improve animal disease traceability--an essential component of protecting animal health." 

The toolkit is offered as a web-based resource with live links.  This allows veterinarians to find the information they need right away and also enables USDA to update the toolkit quickly and easily.

A Veterinarian’s Toolkit is available to all veterinarians and veterinary students through the NAIS Web site at www.usda.gov/nais.     

The National Animal Identification System is a modern, streamlined information system that helps producers and animal health officials respond quickly and effectively to events affecting animal health in the United States.  NAIS utilizes premises registration, animal identification and animal tracing components to both locate potentially diseased animals and eliminate animals from disease suspicion.  It is a state-federal-industry partnership, which is voluntary at the federal level.  For more information on NAIS, go to www.usda.gov/nais.

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