African Swine Fever (ASF) has been recently diagnosed in the Dominican Republic through an ongoing surveillance program in cooperation between The Ministry of Agriculture and USDA Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service (APHIS).
African swine fever is caused by a virus that affects wild and domestic pigs (only). It does not have any human health implications. It is spread highly contagious spreading directly from pig to pig, or through contaminated materials such as farm equipment or meat scraps.
International travelers can unknowingly spread this disease, especially if they visit farms or bring any pork products. When traveling from the Dominican Republic to other countries in Latin America, the Caribbean or North America, please make an effort to prevent spread of this devastating disease. Remember that travelers are prohibited from bringing pork and pork products from the Dominican Republic to the United States.
Declare any international farm visits to U.S. Customs and Border Protection when you return. Make sure you thoroughly clean and disinfect, or dispose of, any clothing or shoes that you wore around pigs, before returning to the U.S. Do not visit a farm, premises with pigs, livestock market, sale barn, zoo, circus, pet store with pot-bellied pigs, or any other animal facility with pigs for at least 5 days after you return.
USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has numerous interlocking safeguards in place to prevent ASF from entering the United States. Additionally, the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is increasing inspections of flights from the Dominican Republic to ensure travelers do not bring prohibited products and to prevent ASF from entering the United States.
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