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Insights for the assessment of the economic impact of endemic diseases: specific adaptation of economic frameworks using the case of bovine viral diarrhoea

Author(s) : A.W. Stott & G.J. Gunn

Summary :

Generic frameworks for the economic analysis of farm animal disease are now well established. The paper, therefore, uses bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) as an example to explore how these frameworks need to be adapted to fit the characteristics of a particular disease and the specific objectives of the analysis. In the case of BVD, given the relative strength of tests available to correctly identify virus-positive animals, thus enabling them to be culled, the emphasis has been on cost–benefit analysis of regional and national certification/eradication schemes. Such analyses in turn raise interesting questions about farmer uptake and maintenance of certification schemes and the equity and cost-effective implementation of these schemes. The complex epidemiology of BVD virus infections and the long-term, widespread and often occult nature of BVD effects make economic analysis of the disease and its control particularly challenging. However, this has resulted in a wider whole-farm perspective that captures the influence of multiple decisions, not just those directly associated with disease prevention and control.

Animal health economics – Behavioural economics – Bovine viral diarrhoea – Economic welfare – Loss–expenditure frontier – State-transition model.

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