Hand, foot and mouth disease in Bali

Indonesian authorities today confirmed an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in cattle in Bali, after being detected elsewhere in Indonesia.for the first time in more than 30 years.

As a result, the federal government is stepping up its messaging to tourists.


Foot-and-mouth disease is a contagious viral disease that affects ungulates, cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and deer, with serious implications for animal health and trade.

Foot-and-mouth disease can be transmitted by airborne particles between animals that live in close proximity. It is also easily spread through contaminated food and water, animal transport, equipment, clothing and footwear.

Unlike hand, foot and mouth disease which can be uncomfortable for children, the risk of HFMD for humans is extremely rare and does not lead to serious illness.

According to the Department of Agriculture, humans can carry the virus in their noses for 24 hours, which can lead to subsequent infection in the animals.

Visitors do not necessarily have to visit rural or agricultural areas to be at risk of exposure to foot and mouth disease. The incubation period of the disease is between 2 and 14 days, which means it can last on a pair of shoes for two weeks.

However, the ministry assures visitors that foot and mouth disease is not transmitted to humans through meat.

If a person in Bali eats a hamburger from a cow infected with foot and mouth disease, they will not get the disease.

Consequences of foot and mouth disease

Consequences of foot and mouth disease

Since foot-and-mouth disease rarely infects humans, but spreads rapidly among animals, it poses a greater threat to the agricultural industry than to human health. Farmers around the world can lose large sums of money during a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak, when large numbers of animals are culled and income from dairy and meat production declines.

Preventing foot-and-mouth disease requires widespread vaccination efforts, close surveillance, restrictions on trade, quarantine, and culling of infected and healthy (uninfected) animals.

Anyone who raises or works with livestock, sheep, goats, or pigs should watch for signs of foot-and-mouth disease: blisters in the mouth and the animal drooling or limping.

Australia is currently free of foot and mouth disease. According to models from the Australian Office of Agriculture and Resource Science and Economics (ABARES), a large-scale outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in Australia would have a direct economic impact on the livestock industry estimated at about $80 billion, the international livestock market in Australia will immediately close.

Australia maintains an international bank of FMD vaccines and vaccines are available in the event of entry into Australia. Vaccines can protect against disease but do not necessarily prevent animals from becoming infected. Vaccination is used in many countries to control endemic diseases.

Undergoing quarantine at the airport

Preventive measures in progress

The Australian government has asked Indonesia for financial support to get the vaccine.

Frontline biosecurity officers are operating on high alert on all flights from Indonesia, including Bali. Strict biosecurity procedures are in place to prevent high-risk materials, such as contaminated equipment or clothing, animals and animal products, from being brought in by guests Travelers may have come into contact with sick animals.

Australia’s chief veterinarian, Mark Schipp, told the ABC on Tuesday that efforts to stop the spread of foot-and-mouth disease have increased and will entail the use of more detection dogs. more purposeful cards and check their luggage more.

Ongoing response activities also include enhancement of targeted communication materials (distributed domestically and internationally), profiling and screening of passengers and mail users.

Australia is undertaking extensive planning and preparation activities to ensure that if an infestation occurs, the outbreak can be contained and controlled as quickly as possible.

Anyone returning to Australia after visiting a farm or having contact with livestock overseas must declare this upon return, so steps can be taken to eliminate the risk of transmission through contaminated clothing. or dirty shoes.

For all information related to foot and mouth disease, you can refer to the government website


Travelers returning from Indonesia can expect much longer procedures at Indonesian and Australian airports.

Declare everything organic at the border when you get home. Let’s do it seriously. Don’t try to smuggle sundries or clothes. Do not visit a farm for a month after you return.

If you’re traveling with multiple pairs of shoes, it’s a good idea to keep them easily accessible in your checked baggage along with any other items that need to be declared, so you don’t waste time in quarantine.

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