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Pilot simulation study using meat inspection data for syndromic surveillance: use of whole carcass condemnation of adult cattle to assess the performance of several algorithms for outbreak detection



Pilot simulation study using meat inspection data for syndromic surveillance: use of whole carcass condemnation of adult cattle to assess the performance of several algorithms for outbreak detection



Epidemiology and Infection 143(12): 2559-2569



The objective of this study was to assess the performance of several algorithms for outbreak detection based on weekly proportions of whole carcass condemnations. Data from one French slaughterhouse over the 2005-2009 period were used (177 098 slaughtered cattle, 0.97% of whole carcass condemnations). The method involved three steps: (i) preparation of an outbreak-free historical baseline over 5 years, (ii) simulation of over 100 years of baseline time series with injection of artificial outbreak signals with several shapes, durations and magnitudes, and (iii) assessment of the performance (sensitivity, specificity, outbreak detection precocity) of several algorithms to detect these artificial outbreak signals. The algorithms tested included the Shewart p chart, confidence interval of the negative binomial model, the exponentially weighted moving average (EWMA); and cumulative sum (CUSUM). The highest sensitivity was obtained using a negative binomial algorithm and the highest specificity with CUSUM or EWMA. EWMA sensitivity was too low to select this algorithm for efficient outbreak detection. CUSUM's performance was complementary to the negative binomial algorithm. The use of both algorithms on real data for a prospective investigation of the whole carcass condemnation rate as a syndromic surveillance indicator could be relevant. Shewart could also be a good option considering its high sensitivity and simplicity of implementation.

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Accession: 058557898

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 25566974

DOI: 10.1017/s0950268814003495


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