|Lots of vaccine vials will be needed. Other than in Europe the vaccination against the highly contagious equine influenza virus is not popular and not mandatory for competitions.
Federal Agriculture Minister Peter McGauran says vaccinations will begin by the end of this week. `There will be 20 000 vaccines arriving late on Thursday [27 Sep 2007] night, and will begin to be distributed on Friday morning,` he said.
The following Thursday, a further 30 000
vaccines become available.
The Government will split 18 500 vials of the vaccine between NSW and Queensland. Victoria, which is still disease free, will get 1500 vials.
Because of us placing an order today for
an extra 100 000, which should begin to arrive in about 2 weeks, it means that we can vaccinate 50 000 horses over the next 2 weeks.`
Greg Tannock, a professor in virology at RMIT, says the horse industry needs to accept that vaccination against the equine influenza virus is now a part of life. `Just the way it`s spread
throughout this country, it`s in large numbers of horses in New South Wales and Queensland,` he said.
`Hopefully we`ll keep it out of the
Spring Carnival here in Melbourne so that the Melbourne Cup and all the associated events can take place. But it`d be, I think in the
longer term, a forlorn hope that it`s not going to spread eventually to the rest of the country, and for that, ongoing vaccination will be needed.`
The Victorian racing industry had been calling for enough vaccine to protect every thoroughbred in the state.
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