Livestock Systems

Improved animal health surveillance in Timor-Leste

Project code
AUD 250,000
Research program manager
Dr Anna Okello
Project leader
Dr Paul Hick, University of Sydney
FEB 2020
MAR 2021
Project status
Legally committed/Active
Share this page


This project aims to contribute to improved passive animal health surveillance in Timor-Leste, which will have downstream impacts on both trade and livelihoods in the country.

This will be achieved through capacity building exercises that span the detection and reporting of disease in the field, through to laboratory diagnostic workflows and reporting, using a case study approach to the topical and important syndrome of mortality of young pigs. 

This project will seek to develop and pilot “best practice” passive animal disease surveillance in a series of pilot areas. To determine what is needed to enable this, the project will identify both opportunities and limitations to effective passive surveillance by documenting the challenges from the perspectives of farmers and of veterinary technicians. This knowledge will in part inform capacity building activities with veterinary technicians.

Project outcomes

  • Implementing CSFV and ASFV antigen ELISA assays in the LVD, Dili and use these in conjunction with other diagnostic modalities in appropriate syndromic disease investigations.
  • Determining the relative importance of African swine fever (ASF), classical swine fever (CSF) and other diseases in the mortality of young pigs after ASFV has become endemic and the CSFV vaccination program is maintained in a target municipality.
  • Identifying limitations and opportunities to improve case detection and investigation of pig diseases based on the experiences of farmers and veterinary technicians.
  • Offering practical recommendations to strengthen passive surveillance for pig disease in Timor-Leste by developing best practice protocols for case detection with enhanced community engagement by veterinary technicians, more rapid and comprehensive diagnostic workflows and timely reporting with feedback to farmers and animal health managers.
Key partners
Northern Territory Dept of Primary Industry and Resources
Menzies School of Health Research
Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF), Dili, Timor Leste