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Import Alert: New World Screwworm Restrictions for Animal Commodities Originating from or Transiting Panama

Effective July 7, 2021, and until further notice, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), Veterinary Services (VS) is restricting the importation of animal commodities originating from or transiting Panama based on the diagnosis of New World screwworm in domestic livestock (cattle and swine).

Importation of ruminants and swine are prohibited from Panama. However, the United States will permit the importation of pet dogs, hedgehogs, tenrecs, elephants, rhinos and tapirs from Panama as long as they are accompanied by a certificate signed by a full-time salaried veterinary official of the region of origin stating that the animal has been inspected for screwworm within 5 days prior to shipment to the U.S and the animal is either free from screwworm OR was found to be infested with screwworm, was held in quarantine, and was treated until free from screwworm prior to leaving the region.

Horses imported directly from Panama must complete and adhere to the established import screwworm protocol which includes a minimum 7-day quarantine period upon arrival.  If horses reside in a screwworm-free country for a minimum of 7 days, immediately prior to being exported to the United States, APHIS will permit the horse to complete a 3-day quarantine upon arrival. Health certificates from all regions visited within the 60 days immediately prior to export must accompany the shipment. In addition, screwworm certification endorsed by a licensed veterinarian from the exporting country must be provided certifying the horse was examined and found free of screwworm after being in country a minimum of 7 days.

For other animal species, please check with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, and/or USDA Animal Care to ensure import requirements of those agencies are met, when applicable.  

A list of regions APHIS recognizes as affected by screwworm can be found on the USDA APHIS Animal Health Status of Regions website.

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