First 36-Hour Communication Plan
The USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC) utilizes molecular screening tests to detect the presence of avian influenza viruses, specifically H5 and H7 subtypes, in samples submitted from live, hunter taken or dead wild birds. All presumptive positive H5 and H7 positive samples are immediately submitted to the USDA National Veterinary Services Laboratory (USDA NVSL) for independent confirmation, including the determination of the N subtype. USDA NVSL immediately initiates tests to determine the pathogenicity of all positive H5N1 samples.
Notification of the presumptive detection of low pathogenicity, H5N1 North American lineage avian influenza, that is not associated with wild bird mortality, is posted electronically on the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Early Detection Data System (HEDDS) website.
The presumptive detection of H5N1 avian influenza associated wild bird mortality and/or highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza from live, hunter taken, or dead wild birds will be communicated to the appropriate Federal, State, local, and international officials and publicly announced through a joint media advisory and briefing by DOI/USDA/HHS scientists/subject matter experts.
Notification of appropriate officials will follow the procedures outlined below and the media advisory will alert news organizations of the time and place of the joint briefing (either at USGS NWHC or in Washington, D.C.) and a news release will be issued simultaneously with the briefing.
1) The detection of presumptive low-path, North American lineage H5N1 from a live wild migratory bird is posted on the HEDDS website:
2) The detection of non-North American lineage and/or presumptive highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza from live, hunter harvested or dead wild bird
3) The detection of presumptive H5N1 avian influenza associated with a large wild bird mortality event.