Wednesday 26th January 2011

Levy Board Launch New Online Codes of Practice

The Horserace Betting Levy Board (HBLB) today launched a new online version of the Codes of Practice on equine diseases, ready for the 2011 Thoroughbred breeding season.

The website, is a replica of the 2011 booklet with an easy to use navigator and full text searching capabilities. It will be viewable in all web browsers.

The 2011 online Codes of Practice set out minimum recommendations for the prevention and control of disease. Applying to all breeds of horse and pony, and to both natural mating and AI, the Codes cover:

• Contagious equine metritis (CEM)
• Equine viral arteritis (EVA)
• Equine herpesvirus (EHV)
• Equine coital exanthema (ECE)
• Equine infectious anaemia (EIA)
• Guidelines on strangles

The increasing mobility of horses creates a subsequent increased risk of spreading infectious disease. In recent years, most countries with active horse populations have seen incidents of these diseases, including in Britain the notifiable diseases of CEM, EIA and EVA.

Any of these diseases can have serious consequences for horse and pony breeding, compromising welfare, disrupting breeding activity and causing economic loss and distress.

Professor Willie Donachie, Chairman of the HBLB’s Veterinary Advisory Committee said;
“We recognise the changing ways in which vets, studs and individual breeder’s access information. The new online version of the Codes is designed to reflect this and ensure that the Codes of Practice, a vital resource, are available where and when they are needed.”

Notes for editors:
One of HBLB’s statutory objectives is to apply horserace betting levy income for purposes conducive to the advancement or encouragement of veterinary science or veterinary education.

An expert Sub Committee of the HBLB’s Veterinary Advisory Committee reviews the Codes of Practice annually. The Sub Committee includes representatives of the Thoroughbred breeders in Britain, Ireland, France, Germany and Italy; the non-Thoroughbred sector; Defra; specialist equine veterinary practitioners; and scientists expert in infectious disease.

The Codes of Practice are published annually by HBLB in advance of the Thoroughbred breeding season each year. They are widely available throughout the equine industry in Britain and overseas. The 2011 Codes of Practice is the 33rd edition.