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Hendra Vaccine Confirmed For Queensland Horses
Racing Queensland has confirmed that a Hendra Virus vaccination program will be implemented throughout the state, reports theaustralian.com.au. Chairman of Queensland Racing, Kevin Dixon, explained the Australian-first program would eventually become mandatory once commercial considerations were finalised. He said the program was designed to protect the 30,000 employees in racing and affiliated industries against the threat of the potentially deadly disease. "If we can get the vast number of horses vaccinated, that minimises risk to people who work in the environment," Dixon told ABC Radio. "Hendra virus has the potential to cripple the racing industry, so doing nothing is not an option for Racing Queensland." Hendra Virus is a bat-borne disease that can be fatal for both horses and humans. This year alone 8 horses have died on Queensland and NSW properties. The vaccine program will be heavily subsidised to encourage its adoption with a deal struck between pharmaceutical company Zoetis (formerly Pfizer) and Equine Veterinarians Australia ensuring its affordability.