LSU Veterinary School Opens Large Animal Isolation Unit

LSU Veterinary School Opens Large Animal Isolation Unit

The John Franks Equine and Large Animal Isolation Unit at LSU.

Photo: Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine

The Louisiana State University (LSU) School of Veterinary Medicine has announced the opening of the state-of-the-art John Franks Equine and Large Animal Isolation Unit at the school's Veterinary Teaching Hospital. The new ensures enhanced separation of potentially infectious horses and farm animals from those that are being admitted for elective medical or surgical evaluations or other procedures. Horses and farm animals with diarrhea (suspected for salmonella, clostridium, or other enteric diseases), respiratory conditions with viral or bacterial causes, neurologic diseases (such as rabies or neurologic equine herpesvirus), or other contagious diseases will be housed exclusively in the new facility.

The 11,000 square-foot complex includes eight individual stalls, each with its own patient care area, an audio/video monitoring and communications system, and a sophisticated ventilation system to ensure containment of airborne disease. Each stall has dual access with interior and exterior doors, which will improve the efficiency and working conditions for staff and clinicians. The unit features two patient examination rooms, allowing for triage, immediate critical care stabilization, advanced procedure capabilities (e.g., ultrasonography, endoscopy, digital radiography), and other diagnostic techniques. The facility also includes two mare-foal stalls equipped with foal-care areas, two stalls equipped with the ability to hoist and maintain patients in slings, and a large animal swing gate stall with a working area for large cattle patients.

The project was realized through the support of both private and public funding.

"It is a tremendously exciting time at LSU, knowing that this facility has been constructed and that our service can expand its offering to provide health care to more horses and farm animals with potentially contagious diseases," said Frank Andrews, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVIM, director of the LSU Equine Health Studies Program. "Now more than ever we can treat them with the utmost confidence that they are in the most biosecure environment possible.

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