Simulation models implemented using a range of parameters offer a useful approach to identifying effective disease intervention strategies. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of key control strategies to mitigate the simultaneous spread of influenza among and between swine and human populations. We used the pandemic H1N1 2009 virus as a case study. The study population included swine herds (488 herds) and households-of-people (29 707 households) within a county in Ontario, Canada. Households were categorized as: (i) rural households with swine workers, (ii) rural households without swine workers and (iii) urban households without swine workers. Seventy-two scenarios were investigated based on a combination of the parameters of speed of detection and control strategies, such as quarantine strategy, effectiveness of movement restriction and ring vaccination strategy, all assessed at three levels of transmissibility of the virus at the swine-human interface. Results showed that the speed of detection of the infected units combined with the quarantine strategy had the largest impact on the duration and size of outbreaks. A combination of fast to moderate speed of the detection (where infected units were detected within 5-10 days since first infection) and quarantine of the detected units alone contained the outbreak within the swine population in most of the simulated outbreaks. Ring vaccination had no added beneficial effect. In conclusion, our study suggests that the early detection (and therefore effective surveillance) and effective quarantine had the largest impact in the control of the influenza spread, consistent with earlier studies. To our knowledge, no study had previously assessed the impact of the combination of different intervention strategies involving the simultaneous spread of influenza between swine and human populations.
- zoonotic diseases