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Reducing risk of disease in aquatic animals with Palisade’s risk analysis software
@RISK enables informed decision-making without costs of extensive testing

28 March 2012, Ithaca, NY -Palisade’s risk analysis software @RISK is being used by aquatic veterinary surgeons to demonstrate the practise of biosecurity to aquatic farmers. The method helps to reduce the potential for disease in animals without incurring the significant costs of extensive testing.

Biosecurity measures, which aim to prevent, control and ideally eradicate disease in aquatic animals, are regarded as essential to maintain the aquaculture sector. However, encouraging the adoption of these practices is often difficult due to the farmers’ levels of education, training, responsibility and perceived economic benefits.

Veterinary surgeons developed an @RISK model to calculate the realistic risk of aquatic disease to farmers. The model simulates thousands of times the results of tests on a limited number of animals to present an accurate picture without testing the entire stock, which is prohibitive due to its cost.

The capacity of @RISK to present the calculations in graphs that are easy to understand also makes it straightforward for vets to show farmers disease risk probabilities. With this information readily available, the cost/benefit of disease prevention can be calculated, and farmers can make informed choices about whether to implement controls.

Dr Chris Walster is a qualified veterinary surgeon with a long-standing interest in aquatic veterinary medicine, and is the secretary to the World Aquatic Veterinary Medical Association (WAVMA).  Having seen Palisade’s risk analysis tool, @RISK demonstrated, he started using it to calculate the realistic risk of aquatic disease to farms, with a focus on cases where data inputs were limited. He explains: “@RISK enables farmers to reduce the risk of disease spreading amongst their animals whilst minimising additional costs.  For aquatic vets, the key is the graphs that allow us to demonstrate a complex probability problem quickly and simply in a way that is easy to understand and trust. These inform decision-making, thereby helping to boost the world’s aquatic stock whilst safeguarding farmers’ livelihoods.”

“This technique also potentially offers an economical method of assisting in the control of many diseases.  Farmers undertake their own tests, with each of these providing incremental inputs so that the macro picture can be developed and acted upon,” concludes Walster.

For more information, contact:

Randy Heffernan
Tel: +1 607-277-8000
Fax: +1 607-277-8001

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