Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica has transferred its PRRS Risk Assessment Tool to the American Association of Swine Veterinarians. 

BIVI developed the survey and benchmarking tool to evaluate risk factors associated with porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus introduction and circulation on farms. PRRS is estimated to cost U.S. pork producers $560 million annually, making it the industry's costliest disease.   

Dale Polson, DVM, BIVI's senior manager of technical resources, and his team developed the assessment tool.  

Daryl Olsen, DVM, AASV president-elect, notes that although veterinarians and producers have been successful in eliminating the virus from individual herds, production flows and even localized areas, the real challenge has been preventing re-infection. “By working through the PRRS Risk Assessment questionnaire with the producer, veterinarians can identify potential facility, management and animal factors that may increase the likelihood of virus introduction or disease severity,” says Olsen.

Risk factors identified in the Risk Assessment Tool are not limited to PRRS.  Many lessons learned by working through the questionnaire can be applied to reducing the likelihood of other disease introductions and minimizing common domestic and newly emerging diseases.

  AASV is training swine veterinarians to conduct the assessments, enter the data and interpret results. Tom Burkgren, DVM, AASV's executive director, says that “through the continued support of BI Vetmedica and contributions from the National Pork Board’s Pork Checkoff, AASV plans to expand the tool's scope tool to include the grow/finish segment, and during the next year will adapt the tool for web-based application.”  AASV also plans to offer researchers access to the cumulative data collected to enhance future PRRS research. 

Swine veterinarians believe the PRRS Risk Assessment Program will be a valuable tool in the ongoing fight against PRRS, enhance the understanding of the disease and aid in its ultimate eradication.

American Association of Swine Practitioners