The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) announces the public release of a newly developed web application named WAHIS-Wild Interface, available on its website. This interface contains information on non OIE-listed diseases of wild animals, collected annually on a voluntary basis by the Member Countries.
One of the main missions of the OIE is to ensure transparency of the worldwide animal disease situation, in particular through the legal obligation for all Member Countries to report cases of 116 diseases of domestic and wild animals grouped in an official OIE list. These notifications help to improve animal health and to safeguard safety of world trade without setting up unjustified sanitary barriers. Since 2005, information about OIE-listed diseases of domestic and wild animals is available through the World Animal Health Information System Interface, WAHID.
Nevertheless, to protect animal and human health, non OIE-listed emerging and reemerging diseases must be watched too, both on domestic and wild animals, and the OIE was a precursor in recognizing the importance of having a global knowledge of disease situation in wild animals, which can be potential reservoir, hosts or victims of particular diseases. In consequence, a specific surveillance procedure dedicated to wildlife was defined by a working group composed of experts from several Member countries. These 53 infectious and non-infectious diseases to be monitored in priority are non OIE-listed, and were selected by the OIE experts on their importance for wildlife and for early purpose to protect animal and human health.
Since 1993, this information is collected from Member countries wishing to participate, starting on an annual basis first, then every six months since 2008. In 2012, the questionnaire used for reporting was replaced by a first online notification system integrated in the new version of the World Animal Health Information System, WAHIS.
The WAHIS-Wild Interface now allows the open consultation of this information about wildlife non OIE listed diseases. Diseases listed on the official OIE list, even when wild animals are infected by them, will not appear on this interface. They will still be included in the main WAHIS Interface named WAHID.
Based on a voluntary reporting related to non OIE-listed diseases, the information included in WAHIS-Wild Interface is not published - in any case - for international trade policies. However, the knowledge of wild animal’s diseases can be crucial for the epidemiology of various pathogens.
The WAHIS-Wild Interface is available on this OIE website.