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Laboratory outreach program initiated in Tsirang

Drugs for livestock being issued as per the laboratory findings

The first ever laboratory outreach program was initiated in five gewogs of Sergithang, Phuentenchu, Tsirangtoe, Semjong and Barshong under Tsirang Dzongkhag from September 5.

Of the total 12 livestock extension centers (LECs) in the Dzongkhag, LECs in the five gewogs are more than 28km away from the Dzongkhag Veterinary Hospital (DVH), which makes it inconvenient for clients and field staff to reach fresh samples timely at DVH therefore making it difficult to diagnose them.

According to Dr Nima from DVH, the program will benefit remote communities in several ways such as providing effective treatment in clinical cases and encourage farmers to submit samples, filling unused capacity and solidifying relationships with the livestock sector and communities.

“It will also help to study types of endo-parasites present in livestock population of different gewogs,” said Dr Nima.

DVH after being established has provided diagnostic services to clinical cases, notifiable disease investigation, carried out clinical and laboratory surveillance, and created awareness on different livestock diseases among people of 12 gewogs.

It also coordinates the research sample collection for the Regional Livestock Development Centre and National Centre for Animal Health (NCAH).

Tsirang with 12 gewogs, 60 chiwogs and 101 villages is a livestock rearing Dzongkhag and one of the poultry hubs in the country.

Health officials feel it is necessary to plan and carry out laboratory outreach services to detect diseases in livestock and accordingly implement control measures.

Samples are analyzed as per the standard operating procedures to DVH by NCAH. As per the laboratory findings, drugs/medicines are dispensed for effective treatments of sick animals.

The laboratory outreach program to gewogs will directly benefit farmers and field staff in carrying out appropriate treatments. It will also reduce the cost of medicine procurement in future and ensure supply of required drugs to prevent unnecessary expiry.

The program has been completed in Sergithang analyzing a total of 92 faecal samples from bovine, caprine, avian and buffalo. The team is currently working in Phuentenchu.

Pema Seldon from Thimphu