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Network analysis of surveillance system evaluation attributes: a way towards improvement of the evaluation process

Peyre M.I., Hoinville L., Haesler B., Lindberg A., Bisdorff B., Dórea F., Wahlström H., Frössling J., Calba C., Grosbois V., Goutard F.. 2014. In : Proceedings ICAHS - 2nd International Conference on Animal Health Surveillance " Surveillance against the odds", The Havana, Cuba, 7-9 May 2014. s.l. : s.n., p. 172-174. International Conference on Animal Health Surveillance. 2, 2014-05-07/2014-05-09, La Havane (Cuba).

Evaluation of animal surveillance systems is essential to ensure quality of the data and to better inform the allocation of resources. Evaluation attributes (e.g. sensitivity; timeliness...) to date have been used with limited standardization, which makes the comparison of evaluation outputs difficult. We applied network analysis based on expert opinion to understand the links between evaluation attributes and the relative importance of each of the evaluation attributes, in order to provide recommendations for their inclusion in the evaluation process. Eleven experts were asked to assess the links between attributes for case studies representing different surveillance objectives (early detection, freedom from disease, case detection). Comparative analysis of the centrality indices and outputs of the principal component analysis from the attribute networks was performed. The analysis showed a clear difference in the organization of the evaluation attribute networks according to the surveillance components considered (e.g. risk-based surveillance versus classical surveillance). This study also provided critical information for the improvement of evaluation attribute definitions and categories. The results contribute to formulating recommendations to decision makers on the surveillance system evaluation process.

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