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FP6

POLYMOD Sintesi della relazione

Project ID: 502084
Finanziato nell'ambito di: FP6-POLICIES
Paese: United Kingdom

Final Report Summary - POLYMOD (Improving Public Health Policy in Europe through Modelling and Economic Evaluation of Interventions for the Control of Infectious Diseases)

The aims of POLYMOD were to strengthen public health decision making in Europe through the development, standardisation and application of mathematical, risk assessment and economic models of infectious diseases. The project attempted to address five main issues:
- First, ensure that modelling and economic analyses are useful and pertinent to public health policy-makers. POLYMOD aimed to review the determinants of policy-making in Europe, and help to ensure that policy makers, public health specialists, mathematical modellers and health economists interact so that the most pertinent public health questions are addressed.
- Second, mathematical models are only as good as the assumptions and parameters on which they are built. Patterns of mixing are central determinants of the transmission of many infections. However, at the outset of POLYMOD little was known about contemporary mixing patterns. POLYMOD aimed to improve the mathematical and risk assessment models by elucidating relevant contemporary mixing patterns in a number of different European countries by utilising a number of data sources and techniques.
- Third, predicting the impact of control programmes against infectious diseases requires the use of sophisticated transmission dynamic models.
- POLYMOD aimed to adapt and develop such models to address a number of public health issues, and to develop novel techniques for microbial risk assessment.
- Finally, the output from the epidemic models were combined with cost and outcome data within a series of economic analyses to allow assessment of the cost-effectiveness of different infectious disease control programmes.

Patterns of mixing are central determinants of the transmission of many infections. However, little is known about contemporary mixing patterns. POLYMOD has therefore surveyed, for the first time, epidemiologically relevant contact patterns from representative samples of eight different European countries. These internationally important datasets have been supplemented by other information sources, including serological data from a number of different countries.

New techniques have been developed to analyse these data, and they are already proving invaluable in helping improve our understanding of transmission mechanisms and helping improve mathematical models. Predicting the impact of control programmes against infectious diseases requires the use of sophisticated transmission dynamic models, as, due to the infectious nature of the organism, interventions often have knock-on effects beyond those that were directly targeted.

POLYMOD has adapted and developed such models, based on the contact pattern data, to address a number of public health issues, such as the impact that vaccination against varicella may have on the epidemiology of varicella zoster virus-related disease. In addition, novel techniques for assessing dose-response relationships and estimating incidence for use in risk assessments of gastrointestinal pathogens have been developed.

The results from models are being combined with cost and outcome data in a series of economic analyses to assess the cost-effectiveness of different vaccination programmes in Europe. Finally, the results are being presented to policymakers with the aim of helping improve public health decision-making.

Informazioni correlate

Contatto

John EDMUNDS, (Head of Unit)
Tel.: +44-20820-06868
Fax: +44-20820-07868
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