OIE evaluation of Australia’s veterinary services

Australia’s veterinary services were recently evaluated by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE); the body that sets health standards for international trade in animals and animal products. In October and November 2015, an expert team undertook the national assessment, visiting the Territory over a five day period to meet with representatives from the cattle, buffalo and live export industry together with government officers, private veterinarians and other relevant stakeholders.

The OIE’s final report of Australia’s Performance of Veterinary Services (PVS) evaluated Australia’s animal health and biosecurity system with most criteria rating very highly. This independent and globally recognized report stands Australia’s reputation as a producer and exporter of safe and healthy animals and animal products in good stead.

The report’s findings show how the parts of our veterinary system add up to deliver a strong animal health status that in turn underpins our capacity to access international markets. More than 130 countries, including many of Australia’s major trade competitors, have been assessed by the OIE against the same standards.

Some of the recommendations/issues raised by the OIE team relevant to the NT cattle industry include:

  • review of Bovine Johnes disease and cattle tick management zones
  • review of government veterinary service resources
  • implementation of national feed safety standards
  • national forum to coordinate animal welfare legislation and compliance
  • registration of veterinary paraprofessionals such as stock inspectors, cattle spayers and pregnancy testers and vet nurses
  • perceived conflict of interest for private veterinarians (authorised as Australian Government Accredited Veterinarians (AAVs)) contracted by the private export sector for live export processes
  • no veterinary oversight in domestic abattoirs.

The full report is available from the World Organisation for Animal Health website.

Last updated: 07 August 2019