An economic evaluation of preclinical testing strategies compared to the compulsory scrapie flock scheme in the control of classical scrapie

Boden, L., Handel, I., Hawkins, N., Houston, F., Fryer, H. and Kao, R. (2012) An economic evaluation of preclinical testing strategies compared to the compulsory scrapie flock scheme in the control of classical scrapie. PLoS ONE, 7(3), e32884. (doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0032884)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0032884

Abstract

Cost-benefit is rarely combined with nonlinear dynamic models when evaluating control options for infectious diseases. The current strategy for scrapie in Great Britain requires that all genetically susceptible livestock in affected flocks be culled (Compulsory Scrapie Flock Scheme or CSFS). However, this results in the removal of many healthy sheep, and a recently developed pre-clinical test for scrapie now offers a strategy based on disease detection. We explore the flock level cost-effectiveness of scrapie control using a deterministic transmission model and industry estimates of costs associated with genotype testing, pre-clinical tests and the value of a sheep culled. Benefit was measured in terms of the reduction in the number of infected sheep sold on, compared to a baseline strategy of doing nothing, using Incremental Cost Effectiveness analysis to compare across strategies. As market data was not available for pre-clinical testing, a threshold analysis was used to set a unit-cost giving equal costs for CSFS and multiple pre-clinical testing (MT, one test each year for three consecutive years). Assuming a 40% within-flock proportion of susceptible genotypes and a test sensitivity of 90%, a single test (ST) was cheaper but less effective than either the CSFS or MT strategies (30 infected-sales-averted over the lifetime of the average epidemic). The MT strategy was slightly less effective than the CSFS and would be a dominated strategy unless preclinical testing was cheaper than the threshold price of (sic)6.28, but may be appropriate for flocks with particularly valuable livestock. Though the ST is not currently recommended, the proportion of susceptible genotypes in the national flock is likely to continue to decrease; this may eventually make it a cost-effective alternative to the MT or CSFS

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Boden, Dr Lisa and Houston, Dr Fiona
Authors: Boden, L., Handel, I., Hawkins, N., Houston, F., Fryer, H., and Kao, R.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:PLoS ONE
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN:1932-6203
Published Online:07 March 2012
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2012 The Authors
First Published:First published in PLoS ONE 7(3):e32884
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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