Evidence for Emergency Vaccination Having Played a Crucial Role to Control the 1965/66 Foot-and-Mouth Disease Outbreak in Switzerland.

Zingg, Dana; Häsler, Stephan; Schüpbach, Gertraud; Schwermer, Heinzpeter; Dürr, Salome Esther (2015). Evidence for Emergency Vaccination Having Played a Crucial Role to Control the 1965/66 Foot-and-Mouth Disease Outbreak in Switzerland. Frontiers in veterinary science, 2, p. 72. Frontiers Media 10.3389/fvets.2015.00072

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Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious disease that caused several large outbreaks in Europe in the last century. The last important outbreak in Switzerland took place in 1965/66 and affected more than 900 premises and more than 50,000 animals were slaughtered. Large-scale emergency vaccination of the cattle and pig population has been applied to control the epidemic. In recent years, many studies have used infectious disease models to assess the impact of different disease control measures, including models developed for diseases exotic for the specific region of interest. Often, the absence of real outbreak data makes a validation of such models impossible. This study aimed to evaluate whether a spatial, stochastic simulation model (the Davis Animal Disease Simulation model) can predict the course of a Swiss FMD epidemic based on the available historic input data on population structure, contact rates, epidemiology of the virus, and quality of the vaccine. In addition, the potential outcome of the 1965/66 FMD epidemic without application of vaccination was investigated. Comparing the model outcomes to reality, only the largest 10% of the simulated outbreaks approximated the number of animals being culled. However, the simulation model highly overestimated the number of culled premises. While the outbreak duration could not be well reproduced by the model compared to the 1965/66 epidemic, it was able to accurately estimate the size of the area infected. Without application of vaccination, the model predicted a much higher mean number of culled animals than with vaccination, demonstrating that vaccination was likely crucial in disease control for the Swiss FMD outbreak in 1965/66. The study demonstrated the feasibility to analyze historical outbreak data with modern analytical tools. However, it also confirmed that predicted epidemics from a most carefully parameterized model cannot integrate all eventualities of a real epidemic. Therefore, decision makers need to be aware that infectious disease models are useful tools to support the decision-making process but their results are not equal valuable as real observations and should always be interpreted with caution.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

05 Veterinary Medicine > Research Foci > Veterinary Public Health / Herd Health Management
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Research and Veterinary Public Health (DCR-VPH) > Veterinary Public Health Institute
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Research and Veterinary Public Health (DCR-VPH)

UniBE Contributor:

Zingg, Dana; Schüpbach, Gertraud and Dürr, Salome Esther

ISSN:

2297-1769

Publisher:

Frontiers Media

Language:

English

Submitter:

Susanne Agnes Lerch

Date Deposited:

11 May 2016 15:09

Last Modified:

29 Sep 2016 12:27

Publisher DOI:

10.3389/fvets.2015.00072

PubMed ID:

26697436

Uncontrolled Keywords:

DADS, Switzerland, control strategies, emergency vaccination, foot-and-mouth disease, historic data, model validation

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.80577

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/80577

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