The Animal Health Trust (AHT) runs a surveillance scheme for equine influenza in the UK. They have set up a sentinel practice scheme, which has participants from equine veterinary practices throughout the UK, to encourage submission of nasal swab and blood samples from horses with suspected flu.

These samples are vitally important for allowing the AHT to find out where and how frequently outbreaks of flu are occurring, and can also be used to monitor any changes that occur in viruses circulating in the UK.

The AHT work together with many other collaborators in Europe, the USA, Japan and India and support other laboratories that carry out this type of work. The information that is collected every year is used to select suitable vaccine strains for recommendation to vaccine manufacturers click here for more information.

The surveillance scheme is funded by the Horserace Betting Levy Board, and is free for any veterinary practice to join. Members of the scheme can send in samples for diagnosis, free of charge. They are also notified of any outbreaks of influenza in their area.

Source: AHT