Veterinary Professional - General Biosecurity Duty
Being a veterinary professional in Tasmania means that you have an important role to play in helping to protect the state from the impacts of animal pests and diseases, as well as potential invasive (non-native/endemic) animal species.
Listed below are some biosecurity actions you can take to meet your General Biosecurity Duty (GBD) and to help keep your practice - and Tasmania - biosecurity safe.
Important Biosecurity Actions
- If you SEE animals looking unwell and you suspect a pest or disease outbreak, or have seen something unusual and you’re not sure whether it’s an Emergency Animal Disease (EAD) or not – isolate the animals and SECURE the site by restricting access and movement - then REPORT immediately.
- National Notifiable Diseases must be reported as a biosecurity event as soon as practicable after a person becomes aware of, or reasonably suspects, the occurrence or likely occurrence of the biosecurity event.
- Be aware of and stay up to date with the latest disease outbreaks and risks, information on what pests and diseases you have reporting obligations for and the processes necessary in making those reports.
- Follow the requirements for collecting and submitting samples to the Biosecurity Tasmania Animal Health Laboratories (see below).
- Be aware of the nationally agreed policies and procedures in relation to various emergency animal diseases, as established under the Australian Veterinary Emergency Plan (AUSVETPLAN) and the Australian Aquatic Veterinary Emergency Plan (AQUAVETPLAN).
- Report incidents of mass mortalities of animals (domesticated or wild, terrestrial or aquatic), as they can be an indicator that a disease has entered and spread within the population.
- Note: stranded, injured or neglected animals should NOT be reported as an Emergency Animal Disease. If you have concerns about animals in these situations contact the RSPCA immediately.
- Educate employees and animal owners about good hygiene, health and biosecurity practices.
- Maintain a practice biosecurity plan, including emergency response procedures.
- Maintain good hygiene standards in your clinic and in the field to prevent the spread of disease.
- Ensure that agricultural and veterinary chemicals are used as per label, or applicable off-label permit (i.e. appropriately to minimise risk to human health, animal health, plant health and the environment). Visit the webpage for information on AgVet chemical use in Tasmania..
- Contribute, where possible and practicable, to biosecurity emergency response efforts affecting animals if requested by Biosecurity Tasmania/ Chief Veterinary Officer.
- Report sightings of unusual non-native animals being kept illegally or released into the environment.
Contact and reporting
Contact Biosecurity Tasmania for general information or to report a suspected pest, weed or disease:
Phone: (03) 6165 3777
Alternatively, you can report suspect notifiable animal diseases by calling the Emergency Animal Disease Hotline (1800 675 888) - all hours.
If you come across a suspect notifiable plant pest or disease, or weed, you can call the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline (1800 084 881)
For more information and resources on Animal Biosecurity in Tasmania:
Stay up to date on biosecurity in Tasmania
Subscribing to get Tasmanian Biosecurity Advisories
is the best way you can keep yourself up-to-date and fully informed about Tasmanian biosecurity issues. Our Advisories cover topics such as changes or proposed changes to Tasmania’s import regulations, animal health and welfare, plant health, forthcoming regulation reviews and opportunities for public comment, new or emerging pest/disease risks and a range of other matters related to Tasmania’s biosecurity
Please note that this information contains minimum recommendations only. The GBD requires a person dealing with biosecurity matter or a carrier to take all reasonable and practicable measures to prevent, eliminate or minimise any biosecurity risk associated with the dealing. Such measures may not be specified in any regulations, guidelines or other official publications.