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Product title :

Mass vaccination and herd immunity: cattle and buffalo

Author(s) : P.L. Roeder & W.P. Taylor

Summary :

The design of effective programmes for emergency response to incursion of epizootic diseases of cattle, for exclusion of such diseases and for implementation of progressive control in enzootic situations leading to eventual virus elimination, is currently largely empirical. This needs to be remedied to provide more cost-effective use of vaccines and more effective control. At population level, protective effects of immunisation can extend well beyond the individual, influencing the dynamics of viral propagation within the whole population, non-vaccinated as well as vaccinated. This concept of herd immunity and application of the resulting epidemiological principles, combined with experience gained from disease control programmes such as the Global Rinderpest Eradication Programme has much to offer in designing effective science-based control programmes. This paper explores practical exploitation of the herd immunity principle by considering some of the factors which militate against mass vaccination achieving effective levels of herd immunity and, with these in mind, suggesting ways to optimise the efficiency of mass vaccination programmes.

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