Quarantine vs. Hold Order: What's the Difference? And
To read the use of the term "quarantine" as applied to large animals in the Maryland Annotated Code, please visit www.equiery.com and visit the Herpes Health Crises Update section.
Both A Legal and Medical Term
|Levels of Restriction: A Matter of Extent - and Stakes
Hohenhaus goes on the explain that the Hold Orders placed on those barns with equine herpes fall under the category of the Secretary's "Special Quarantine" authority. "That's a legal definition that pertains to individual, small lots - a barn, a farm, a cluster of barns," he says.
Beyond that, he says, the Secretary can quarantine large blocs of land, right up to the whole state - and the higher the stakes, the more probable the governor's involvement. A restriction at this level is likely to be referred to as a "General Quarantine."
Hold Orders are basically divided into Investigational Hold Orders and General Animal Hold Orders, Hohenhaus continues. "The Investigational Hold Order is just a temporary Special Quarantine that you use when you have reason to believe that you're dealing with a disease, but you haven't confirmed that," he explains, adding that it generally lasts a week, or however long it takes to get test results back. If the diagnostic information is already there, however, the investigational stage is skipped in favor of a General Animal Hold Order, which lasts a specified amount of time. "But ultimately, we're still exercising the Secretary's quarantine authority," he stresses.
As for what was imposed on Pimlico by the Maryland Jockey Club, that was not technically a quarantine, Hohenhaus says, because a "quarantine" has a very specific legal definition as described above, and can only be imposed by certain authorities (including the Secretary of Agriculture). "Perhaps a more appropriate term would be 'self-imposed restriction on movement' or 'lockdown,' " he suggests.
© The Equiery 2010