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Glossary of terms on aquatic biosecurity

Glossary of terms on aquatic biosecurity

Aquatic Animal Health Services: means the governmental and non-governmental organizations that implement animal health and welfare measures and other standards and recommendations in the Aquatic Code in the territory. The Aquatic Animal Health Services are under the overall control and direction of the Competent Authority. Private sector organizations, veterinarians or aquatic animal health professionals are normally accredited or approved by the Competent Authority to deliver the delegated functions.

Aquatic animal health status: means the status of a country, zone or compartment with respect to an aquatic animal disease in accordance with the criteria listed in the relevant chapter of the Aquatic Code dealing with the disease.

Aquatic animals: means all life stages (including eggs and gametes) of fish, molluscs, crustaceans and amphibians originating from aquaculture establishments or removed from the wild, for farming purposes, for release into the environment, for human consumption or for ornamental purposes.

Aquatic Code: means the OIE Aquatic Animal Health Code.

Basic biosecurity conditions: means a set of conditions applying to a particular disease, and a particular zone or country, required to ensure adequate disease security, such as:

  • The disease, including suspicion of the disease, is compulsorily notifiable to the Competent Authority; and
  • An early detection system is in place within the zone or country; and
  • Import requirements to prevent the introduction of disease into the country or zone, as outlined in the Aquatic Code, are in place.

Biosecurity: means a set of management and physical measures designed to reduce the risk of introduction, establishment and spread of pathogenic agents to, from and within an aquatic animal population.

Biosecurity plan: means a plan that identifies significant potential pathways for the introduction and spread of disease in a zone or compartment, and describes the measures which are being, or will be, applied to mitigate the risks to introduce and spread disease, taking into consideration the recommendations in the Aquatic Code. The plan should also describe how these measures are audited, with respect to both their implementation and their targeting, to ensure that the risks are regularly re-assessed and the measures adjusted accordingly.

Certifying official: means a person authorised by the Competent Authority to sign health certificates for aquatic animals.

Competent Authority: means the Veterinary Authority or other Governmental Authority of a Member Country having the responsibility and competence for ensuring or supervising the implementation of aquatic animal health and welfare measures, international health certification and other standards and recommendations in the Aquatic Code in the whole territory.

Contingency plan: means a documented work plan designed to ensure that all needed actions, requirements and resources are provided in order to eradicate or bring under control outbreaks of specified diseases of aquatic animals.

Diagnosis: means determination of the nature of a disease.

 

Disease: means clinical or non-clinical infection with one or more aetiological agents.

Disinfectants: means chemical compounds or physical processes capable of destroying pathogenic agents or inhibiting their growth in the course of disinfection.

Disinfection: means the process of cleaning and applying disinfectants to inactivate pathogenic agents on potentially contaminated items.

Early detection system: means an efficient system for ensuring the rapid recognition of signs that are suspicious of a listed disease, or an emerging disease situation, or unexplained mortality, in aquatic animals in an aquaculture establishment or in the wild, and the rapid communication of the event to the Competent Authority, with the aim of activating diagnostic investigation by the Aquatic Animal Health Services with minimal delay. Such a system will include the following characteristics:

  • Broad awareness, e.g. among the personnel employed at aquaculture establishments or involved in processing, of the characteristic signs of the listed diseases and emerging diseases;
  • Veterinarians or aquatic animal health professionals trained in recognising and reporting suspicions of disease occurrence;
  • Ability of the Aquatic Animal Health Services to undertake rapid and effective disease investigation based on a national chain of command;
  • Access by the Aquatic Animal Health Services to laboratories with the facilities for diagnosing and differentiating listed diseases and emerging diseases;
  • The legal obligation of private veterinarians or aquatic animal health professionals to report suspicions of disease occurrence to the Competent Authority.

Emerging disease: means a disease, other than national listed diseases, which has a significant impact on aquatic animal or public health resulting from:

  • Change of known pathogenic agent or its spread to a new geographic area or species; or
  • Newly recognised or suspected pathogenic agent.

Exporting country: means a country from which aquatic animals or aquatic animal products, biological products or pathological material are sent to a destination in another country.

Free country: means a country that fulfils the requirements for self-declaration of freedom from disease with respect to the disease(s) under consideration in accordance with the relevant chapter(s) in the Aquatic Code.

Hazard: means a biological, chemical or physical agent in, or a condition of, an aquatic animal or aquatic animal product with the potential to cause an adverse effect on aquatic animal health or public health.

Importing country: means a country that is the final destination to which aquatic animals, aquatic animal products, biological products or pathological material are sent.

Incidence: means the number of new outbreaks of disease within a specified period of time in a defined aquatic animal population.

Infected zone: means a zone in which a disease has been diagnosed.

 

Infection: means the presence of a multiplying or otherwise developing or latent pathogenic agent in a host. This term is understood to include infestation where the pathogenic agent is a parasite in or on a host.

International aquatic animal health certificate: means a certificate, issued in conformity with the provisions of Chapter 5.11. of the OIE Code, describing the aquatic animal health and/or public health requirements that should be fulfilled prior to export of commodity.

Listed diseases: means diseases that are referred to in Chapter 1.3. of the OIE Code or diseases that have been listed by the National competent authority as nationally relevant and therefore notifiable.

Notification: means the procedure by which:

  • The Competent Authority informs the Headquarters of the OIE.
  • The Headquarters inform Competent Authorities of other OIE Member Countries.

of the occurrence of a disease in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 1.1. of the OIE Code.

Outbreak: means an occurrence of one or more cases in an epidemiological unit.

Pathogenic agent: means an organism that causes or contributes to the development of a disease.

Pathological material: means samples obtained from live or dead aquatic animals, containing or suspected of containing pathogenic agents, to be sent to a laboratory.

Prevalence: means the total number of infected aquatic animals expressed as a percentage of the total number of aquatic animals in a given aquatic animal population at one specific time.

Quarantine: means maintaining a group of aquatic animals in isolation with no direct or indirect contact with other aquatic animals, in order to undergo observation for a specified length of time and, if appropriate, testing and treatment, including proper treatment of the effluent waters.

Risk: means the likelihood of the occurrence and the likely magnitude of the biological and economic consequences of an adverse event or effect to animal or human health.

Risk analysis: means the process composed of hazard identification, risk assessment, risk management and risk communication.

Risk assessment: means the scientific evaluation of the likelihood and the biological and economic consequences of entry, establishment and spread of a hazard.

Risk communication: is the interactive exchange of information and opinions throughout the risk analysis process concerning risk, risk-related factors and risk perceptions among risk assessors, risk managers, risk communicators, the general public and other interested parties.

Risk management: means the process of identifying, selecting and implementing measures that can be applied to reduce the level of risk.

Sanitary measure: means a measure, such as those described in various chapters of the Aquatic Code, destined to protect aquatic animal or human health or life within the territory of the Member Country from risks arising from the entry, establishment and/or spread of a hazard.

Self-declaration of freedom from disease: means declaration by the Competent Authority of the Member Country concerned that the country, zone or compartment is free from a listed disease based on implementation of the provisions of the Aquatic Code and the Aquatic Manual. [NOTE: The Member Country is encouraged to inform the OIE of its claimed status and the OIE may publish the claim but publication does not imply OIE endorsement of the claim.]

Sensitivity: means the proportion of true positive tests given in a diagnostic test, i.e. the number of true positive results divided by the number of true positive and false negative results.

Specificity: means the probability that absence of infection will be correctly identified by a diagnostic test, i.e. the number of true negative results divided by the number of true negative and false positive results.

Surveillance: means a systematic series of investigations of a given population of aquatic animals to detect the occurrence of disease for control purposes, and which may involve testing samples of a population.

Susceptible species: means a species of aquatic animal in which infection has been demonstrated by the occurrence of natural cases or by experimental exposure to the pathogenic agent that mimics natural transmission pathways.

Target population: means, for the purposes of demonstrating freedom from infection, the population of interest, usually made up of all aquatic animals of species susceptible to a specified pathogenic agent in a defined country, zone or aquaculture establishment.

Targeted surveillance: means surveillance targeted at a specific disease or infection.

Veterinarian: means a person with appropriate education, registered or licensed by the relevant veterinary statutory body of a country to practise veterinary medicine/science in that country.

Veterinary Authority: means the Governmental Authority of a Member Country, comprising veterinarians, other professionals and para-professionals, having the responsibility and competence for ensuring or supervising the implementation of aquatic animal health and welfare measures, international aquatic animal health certification and other standards and recommendations in the Aquatic Code in the whole territory.

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