USDA Launches Intitiative to Track COVID and Other Zoonotic Diseases in Wild and Domestic Animals

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it is developing new tests and tools designed to detect COVID-19 and its variants in wild and domestic animals. The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is implementing a $300 million provision in the American Rescue Plan Act to partner with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service “on five research projects to improve understanding of the virus and to help USDA accomplish its goal of building an early warning system to potentially prevent or limit the next zoonotic disease outbreak or global pandemic.”