FEI Approves Updated Horse Health Requirements

Among the first decisions taken by the FEI Board at their two-day meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland (June 21-22), were updates to the sanction system for the Horse Health Requirements introduced in response to the severe EHV-1 outbreak in mainland Europe last year. The system has been in place since November 1, 2021.

According to the modifications approved by the Board, three further levels will be added prior to imposing a horse suspension. Additionally, suspensions will be enforced only after a horse has finished competing at an event at which the relevant sanction has been received. 

“Another useful development is the improved functionality of the FEI HorseApp which is the essential management tool for the Horse Health Requirements,” Gaspard Dufour, FEI Director of Information and Sports Technology said. A new home page in the form of a dashboard for use by PRs will be added. It will allow athletes and grooms to see the status of every horse entered for all upcoming shows.

“The severity of the EHV-1 outbreak on mainland Europe had devastating consequences for the entire equine industry,” FEI Secretary General Sabrina Ibáñez commented. 

“Since the Horse Health Requirements came into force, 78% of the horses competing on mainland Europe have fulfilled them correctly. Out of the remaining 22%, 18% received warnings and 4% were sanctioned.

“We are well aware of the criticism, but also of the useful feedback, some of these actions have generated, said Ibáñez. “We have taken on board the suggestions the community sent us and made every effort to improve the system so it is better aligned with the biosecurity risk posed at the various events.”

The modified Horse Health Requirements will come into effect in mainland Europe on July 4 2022. For the rest of the world, the modified Horse Health Requirements will come into effect on September 1, 2022.

For more information on this topic, please visit the Horse Health Requirements hub.

A wrap-up report summarising the main decisions taken by the Board will be published on the dedicated FEI Board Meeting hub on Inside.fei.org.