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Opportunistic approaches to evaluation of surveillance efforts in resource-limited countries


The Biological Threat Reduction Program (BTRP) of the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) delivers interventions to enhance surveillance of especially dangerous pathogens of both humans and animals within countries of the former Soviet Union. The program targets the different stages at which threats or their impact can be reduced, for example via i) the reduction of exposure to threats, or ii) measures for the containment of the threat. The program delivers training on surveillance-related subjects through regular events attended by representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture of Uzbekistan (UZ). This provides an opportunity to capture data and conduct simple interventions on specific subjects amenable to basic evaluation. Given the sensitive nature of pathogen-specific data, we focus on non-disease-specific interventions leading to the reduction of exposure to and release of any given hazard. Here we present an opportunistic approach for capturing data, at no additional cost, to assess i) baseline awareness of on-farm biosecurity measures among UZ veterinary officials and ii) the impact of training on their awareness of biosecurity. We also discuss the conceptual design of a study to assess on-farm biosecurity practices in UZ.


To describe approaches to the evaluation of surveillance-related efforts in resource-limited countries. Here we present an opportunistic approach to measure the success of efforts to improve on-farm biosecurity in Uzbekistan, leading to a reduction of generic threats to animal disease transmission.

Submitted by elamb on