Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement

Animal Health Australia (AHA) manages the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement (EADRA), a unique contractual arrangement between Australia’s governments and industry groups to collectively reduce the risk of disease incursions and manage a response if an outbreak occurs.

The EADRA is a unique contractual arrangement signed in 2002 that brings together the Australian, state and territory governments and livestock industry groups to collectively and significantly increase Australia’s capacity to prepare for—and respond to—emergency animal disease (EAD) incursions.

The main benefit of the Agreement is the ability to respond quickly and effectively to an EAD incident while minimising uncertainty over management and funding arrangements.

The EADRA covers 66 categorised animal diseases and 23 Signatories to the Deed (governments and industry bodies).

EADRA approaches

All signatories have agreed to work collectively to reduce the risk of emergency animal disease (EAD) incursions and share the approved costs of EAD responses. The EADRA also provides an innovative framework (outlined below) to combine multiple dynamic approaches to combating EADs.

Participation and cooperation

All parties commit to the participation in an EAD response through informed and empowered representatives who cooperate to determine and direct the response. This unique approach facilitates effective participation across state and territory boundaries and gives each participating industry a ‘real voice’.

Risk management

While the Agreement ensures that funds to combat an EAD are made available and the costs shared among the beneficiaries of the response, it also commits parties to take all reasonable steps to minimise the risk of an EAD occurrence in the first place (eg through the development and implementation of biosecurity plans.

Detection and response

All parties commit to maintaining the capability to ensure early detection of—and an effective response to—an EAD.

Cost sharing

All parties commit to contribute to funding the eligible costs of responding to an EAD by which they are affected. The costs to be shared are identified under the Agreement. Some of the rules around cost sharing can be summarised as follows:

  • Cost sharing is aimed at equitable contributions from all parties, commensurate with their respective resource base and status as a beneficiary of the response.
  • The total amount of response costs that government and industry parties share in the event of an EAD is capped, depending on the size of the affected industry.
  • EADs are categorised according to the impact they can have on livestock industry production (eg international trade losses, domestic market disruptions, production losses), human health and the environment. An EAD’s category determines how much of the response costs are borne by affected industries in aggregate and how much by governments.
  • A party that is not a beneficiary of the response is not required to share the costs, but neither does it have a say in determining the response.
  • Compensation payable to an owner under state or territory legislation, which may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, may be included in cost-sharing under the Agreement.

Training

Training is an essential part in ensuring the efficacy of a response. The EADRA provides for the training of relevant personnel.

Maintenance of the EADRA

Since 2002, the EADRA has been used in a number of real and simulated responses. When using the EADRA, various parties may identify areas where the Deed could be improved.

To maintain the EADRA, AHA:

  • holds regular workshops to address identified issues and amend the Deed as necessary
  • prepares supporting EADRA business rules and guidance documents.

Business rules and guidance documents

Guidelines for accounting and cost sharing under the EADRA

This provides participating agencies with a set of business rules and forms to claim eligible costs and clearly outlines AHA’s role and the claims process. Issued under the authority of the signatories to the Agreement, these guidelines may be amended or varied at any time with the agreement of the parties.

Access here.

Guidelines for Determining Whether an Unlisted Disease is an EAD under the EAD Response Agreement

Clearly outlines the process of requesting AHA to determine whether an unknown or unlisted emergency animal disease should be listed in the EADRA. Issued under the authority of the signatories to the Agreement, these guidelines may be amended or varied at any time with the agreement of the parties.

Access here.

Guide to Developing an Emergency Animal Disease Response Plan

Describes how to develop an emergency animal disease response plan (EADRP) in accordance with Schedule 4 of the EADRA. Could also be used as a training resource for people who develop EADRPs for animal biosecurity emergency responses.

Access here.

Normal commitments for Parties to the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement

Guides decision making in the case of a cost-shared response. The ‘normal’ commitments represent a baseline above which other costs should be shared, and those presented here are not precluded from future revision as the work of other groups, particularly the National Biosecurity Committee, delivers outputs.

Access here.

Livestock welfare management and compensation principles for Parties to the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement

Guides decision making in the case of a cost-shared response under an approved EAD Response Plan. Defining livestock welfare management and compensation principles ensures that Parties understand their potential commitments to a response up front, to improve funding certainty during a response, to assist with response planning and incident management, and thereby to promote rapid responses to emergency situations.

Access here.

Interpretation of containment in the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement

Ensures the consistent interpretation of EADRA processes and a common understanding of its terminology, particularly the terms ‘containment’ and ‘eradication’.

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Consistency in the calculation of proportional cost shares in the EADRA

Facilitates a common understanding of the process used for calculating the proportional cost shares in the EADRA.

Access here.

EADRA Guidance Document – Interpretation of Compensation and Cost Sharing in the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement

This is provided to Parties to the EADRA to develop a common understanding of the relationship of compensation, which is provided under jurisdictional legislation and cost sharing of response costs, including compensation, which is managed under the EADRA.

Access here.

EADRA Guidance Document – Appointment of industry personnel in an EAD response

This is provided to Parties to the EADRA to facilitate a common understanding of the principles and process used for appointing industry personnel to assist in mounting an EAD response.

Access here.

EADRA Guidance Document – Sourcing and appointing an Efficiency Advocate in a cost shared EAD response

In a Cost Shared EAD response, this is provided to Parties to the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement (EADRA) to facilitate a common understanding of the principles and processes used for sourcing and appointing an Efficiency Advocate in an EAD response.

Access here.

EADRA Guidance Document – Consequential loss

This provides a set of principles and criteria for determining if a response cost is eligible for Cost Sharing and also provides an agreed working definition of consequential loss for purposes of the EADRA.

Access here.