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Veterinary Surveillance
Review group sets out principles for delivery of surveillance

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ESSENTIAL issues that should be considered when developing a new model for surveillance are discussed in a recently published report from an independent advisory group that was established by the AHVLA to make recommendations on future options for the delivery of veterinary surveillance in England and Wales.

In December last year, the AHVLA asked Dirk Pfeiffer, professor of veterinary epidemiology at the Royal Veterinary College, to chair a Surveillance Advisory Group (SAG) (VR, January 14, 2012, vol 170, p 35). The group was asked to consider evidence from stakeholders who were contributing to the surveillance network and to define the requirements of the network before proposing possible options for a future delivery model.

In its report, the group explains that the timescale for the review was very short and, therefore, it discussed only generic aspects of surveillance. These included the requirements of a surveillance network; the development and maintenance of expertise; criteria to inform decision making in relation to the number, type and location of centres; improved access to these centres; improved engagement between partners contributing to surveillance; and governance of the new model. Its recommendations cover the generic design criteria for a new model; it decided that it could not provide advice on the specific number and location of sites, or other areas that would need to be considered in the future, such as the mechanisms by which some of its recommendations might be met, including how the new model might be funded.

The advisory group makes three core recommendations and seven supplementary recommendations regarding the generic design criteria that should be used when developing a new model for the delivery of surveillance in England and Wales (see box on p 403). In addition, the group says that any model should also aim to fulfil 12 requirements that its …

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