The Western Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network has introduced a new cell phone app designed to make it easier for veterinarians to report on the health status of swine in their regions, writes Bruce Cochrane.
Swine veterinarians in western Canada are now beta testing a new cell phone app developed as part of Canada's swine health surveillance system.
Dr Egan Brockhoff, the national animal health coordinator with Canadian Pork Council, explained the app was developed over the past six months and is currently being used by veterinarians in the four western provinces.
Dr Egan Brockhoff-Canadian Pork Council:
The app is designed in a way that it takes about 30 seconds to 1 minute for a swine veterinarian, after an event has happened, so a farm call or a phone call, to gather health information.
It's very generic information.
It doesn't name the farm or give a specific location to the farm.
It simply questions about how much coughing was there, what were your clinical impressions of what disease you saw, is this a new syndrome, is this an old syndrome, so on and so forth, so it's designed to be used by swine veterinarians.
The information, though, is all about gathering intelligence and from that intelligence creating knowledge that we can get back to the pork producer, get back to the pork industry and get back to swine veterinarians as well.
And so it's part of the Western Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network.
This is our data gathering component of that and that information again goes back to the pork industry and provides information on what's happening in the health world and how you should best prepare for that.
Dr Brockhoff said the goal was to have swine veterinarians, after every farm visit, take about 30 seconds to 1 minute to input the data.
He noted the app uses a straight forward touchscreen format that gathers succinct information that's extremely valuable in understanding what's happening in the region.