Animal Health Regionalization and Compartmentalization

Last Modified: Marzo 27, 2024

APHIS evaluates the animal health statuses of foreign regions and compartments and the risk of disease introduction from imported commodities. Our Regionalization Evaluation Services staff leads this work.

We analyze information obtained through consultations with U.S. trading partners. Our evaluations facilitate trade while protecting the United States from certain animal diseases. We define regions and compartments as follows:

  • A region is a geographic land area identifiable by geological, political, or surveyed boundaries.
  • A compartment is any defined animal subpopulation contained in one or more establishments under a common biosecurity management system for which surveillance, control, and biosecurity measures have been applied with respect to a specific disease.

Visit Animal Health Status of Regions for current lists of APHIS-recognized statuses by region and animal disease or pest.

How To Request an Animal Health Status Evaluation

Requests for animal health status evaluations must:

  • Be submitted by the competent animal health authority of the foreign region.
  • Be provided in English and submitted electronically whenever possible.
  • Specifically note the words, paragraphs, or pages of the submission that contain confidential business information (CBI), if applicable. Note: APHIS makes supporting information submitted by foreign regions available to the public unless that information contains CBI. We work to protect CBI in accordance with legal and regulatory obligations and practices.

Below are the different types of requests and steps involved.

We evaluate the animal health statuses of foreign regions for the diseases and pests listed below. We also conduct commodity-based assessments if APHIS cannot recognize a region as free of one or more of these diseases or pests.

  • African swine fever
  • African horse sickness
  • bovine spongiform encephalopathy
  • classical swine fever
  • contagious equine metritis
  • fever ticks
  • foot-and-mouth disease
  • highly pathogenic avian influenza
  • Newcastle disease
  • scrapie
  • screwworm
  • swine vesicular disease

Requesting a Regionalization Evaluation

Requests for recognition of the animal health status of a region must include the following information (per 9 CFR 92.2):

  1. Scope of the evaluation being requested
  2. Veterinary control and oversight
  3. Disease history and vaccination practices
  4. Livestock demographics and traceability
  5. Epidemiological separation from potential sources of infection
  6. Surveillance
  7. Diagnostic laboratory capabilities
  8. Emergency preparedness and response

See Clarification of Information Requested for Recognition of a Region (69.71 KB) for details about the information that the requesting region must provide for an evaluation.

Requesting an Evaluation as a "Historically Free" Region

We may consider a region to be historically free of a particular disease if it has not occurred in the region’s domestic livestock for at least 25 years or its wildlife for at least 10 years. Requests for recognition that a region is historically free of a disease must include the following information (per 9 CFR 92.2):

  1. Scope of the evaluation being requested
  2. Veterinary control and oversight
  3. Disease history and vaccination practices
  4. Disease notification
  5. Disease detection
  6. Barriers to disease introduction

See Clarification of Information Requested for Recognition of a Historically Free Region (49.71 KB) for details about the information that the requesting region must provide for an evaluation.

We evaluate foreign regions to classify their status for bovine tuberculosis (TB, Mycobacterium bovis) and brucellosis (Brucella abortus) in bovine animals (per 9 CFR 93.438 and 93.441, respectively).

Regions APHIS has not evaluated for bovine TB are by default classified at the highest risk level (Level V) and may only export bovine animals to the United States for direct slaughter. Regions that want to export bovine animals to the United States for other purposes must undergo an APHIS evaluation for classification as Level I-IV for bovine TB.

Regions APHIS has not evaluated for brucellosis are classified at the highest risk level for that disease (Level III). Regions that want to export sexually intact cattle to the United States may wish to request an APHIS evaluation for brucellosis classification as Level I or II. These levels are associated with reduced import testing for that disease.

Requesting a Bovine TB or Brucellosis Status Evaluation

Regions seeking APHIS evaluation and classification for bovine TB, brucellosis, or both must define the region under consideration, specify the prevalence of the disease(s) among bovine herds in the region, and demonstrate the following:

  1. Effective veterinary control and oversight in the region
  2. Bovine TB and/or brucellosis is a notifiable disease in the region
  3. The region has a program for brucellosis or bovine TB that, at a minimum, includes—
    • Epidemiological investigations after the discovery of any animal or affected herd with non-negative test results.
    • Affected-herd management designed to eradicate the disease from those herds and documentation regarding this management.
    • Regulatory controls on the movement of livestock into, within, and from the region that correspond to the risk of disease spread.
    • Access to, oversight of, and quality control of diagnostic testing for the disease(s).
    • Surveillance equivalent to or exceeding U.S. surveillance standards for the disease(s).
    • Brucellosis vaccination programs, if present, conducted in an APHIS-approved manner (requirement only for regions seeking APHIS evaluation for brucellosis).

Find out more about our bovine TB evaluation procedures (1.04 MB) and brucellosis evaluation procedures (1.05 MB).

Foreign regions requesting an APHIS evaluation and classification must complete the bovine TB evaluation questionnaire (54.71 KB) or brucellosis evaluation questionnaire (51.44 KB).

Regions requesting APHIS classification of their bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) risk status as negligible or controlled can find out more about our process in 9 CFR 92.5. 

  • If WOAH classifies a region’s BSE risk status as negligible or controlled, APHIS will evaluate documentation to determine whether our agency concurs with WOAH’s classification.
  • If WOAH has not classified a region’s BSE risk status as negligible or controlled, the region must submit an official request for classification to APHIS, along with supporting documentation.

For more information, consult the World Organisation for Animal Health (WOAH) website, including details on their standards and WOAH BSE classifications.

Compartmentalization is an important tool animal health officials can use to protect against disease spread and support continued trade during a disease outbreak. The livestock or poultry in a compartment are managed using consistent, strict biosecurity and health practices and are kept separate from other populations of animals. This means there is a minimal risk that compartmentalized animals are exposed to disease. When disease strikes, unaffected compartments could still be eligible for international trade.

Requests for compartmentalization evaluations must include the following information (per 9 CFR 92.2.):

  1. Scope of the evaluation being requested
  2. Veterinary control and oversight of the compartment
  3. Disease history and vaccination practices
  4. Livestock or poultry commodity movement and traceability
  5. Epidemiologic separation of the compartment from potential sources of infection
  6. Surveillance
  7. Diagnostic laboratory capabilities
  8. Emergency preparedness and response

Our process for conducting compartmentalization evaluations is similar to our process for conducting regionalization evaluations. See Clarification of Information Requested for Recognition of a Compartment (267.44 KB) for details about the information that the requesting region must provide for a compartmentalization evaluation.

Animal Health Status Reviews

We review the animal health statuses of regions APHIS has previously recognized. These reviews ensure that our import procedures continue to mitigate the risk of foreign animal disease introduction and allow us to make changes as needed.

To learn more, visit Animal Health Status Reviews.

Learn More

Find out more about our process (204.9 KB). For a list of regions with pending assessments, view Regions Requesting APHIS Recognition of Animal Health Status (90.71 KB).

Questions?

If you have questions or need more information, contact us:

Regionalization Evaluation Services