Scientific Opinion on the assessment of the control measures of the category A diseases of Animal Health Law: African Swine Fever
EFSA received a mandate from the European Commission to assess the effectiveness of some of the control measures against diseases included in the Category A list according to Regulation (EU) 2016/429 on transmissible animal diseases (‘Animal Health Law’). This opinion belongs to a series of opinions where these control measures will be assessed, with this opinion covering the assessment of control measures for African Swine Fever (ASF). In this opinion, EFSA and the AHAW Panel of experts reviewed the effectiveness of: (i) clinical and laboratory sampling procedures, (ii) monitoring period and (iii) the minimum radius of the protection and surveillance zone, and the minimum length of time the measures should be applied in these zones. The general methodology used for this series of opinions has been published elsewhere; nonetheless, specific details of the model used for the assessment of the laboratory sampling procedures for ASF are presented here. Here, also, the transmission kernels used for the assessment of the minimum radius of the protection and surveillance zones are shown. Several scenarios for which these control measures had to be assessed were designed and agreed prior to the start of the assessment. In summary, several sampling procedures as described in the diagnostic manual for ASF were considered ineffective and a suggestion to exclude, or to substitute with more effective procedures was made. The monitoring period was assessed as non‐effective for several scenarios and a longer monitoring period was suggested to ensure detection of potentially infected herds. It was demonstrated that the surveillance zone comprises 95% of the infections from an affected establishment, and therefore is considered effective. Recommendations provided for each of the scenarios assessed aim to support the European Commission in the drafting of further pieces of legislation, as well as for plausible ad hoc requests in relation to ASF.