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APHA disease investigative service

APHA's Veterinary Investigation Officers (VIOs) are based at our Veterinary Investigation Centres across Great Britain. 

The role of an VIO

VIOs can give advice where the details on this website do not provide sufficient information, or where you wish to discuss complex, unusual or problematic outbreaks of disease.

A VIO should also be contacted directly to discuss results of post mortem examinations or laboratory testing carried out by APHA, or if you wish to discuss the findings of your own examinations.

It’s not necessary to submit samples or carcases to APHA to access expert advice from VIOs. APHA experts are always happy to discuss cases with you and help with investigation of incidents which may be due to emerging threats.

VIOs also carry out farm visits in specific circumstances such as the investigation of zoonotic outbreaks or new and emerging diseases.

Expert knowledge

In general VIOs have a great depth of knowledge and some have very specialist knowledge. Some VIOs are members of APHA's Species Expert Groups.

All VIOs have easy access to the vast and diverse wealth of knowledge and technical expertise, including research pathology and other specialisms such as virology and bacteriology, available within the whole of APHA and the Defra group. There is also a good network of experts outside the government network for additional collaboration.

Expert knowledge also exists in the following areas:

VIOs also have access to a network of scientific researchers based within our APHA centres who have in-depth knowledge of diagnostic testing, allowing VIOs access to new and developing tests and molecular tests that may not be accessible elsewhere.

Contact a VIO

Please contact a VIO at your designated APHA Veterinary Investigation Centre or via the specific Species Expert Groups.