All of the major inquiries which followed the UK foot-and-mouth disease epidemic in 2001 identified the need for increased training of veterinarians in the concept and practices of quantitative epidemiology. We propose an integrated programme of research training Fellowships run conjointly at the Centre for Infectious Diseases (CID) at the University of Edinburgh and the Institute of Comparative Medicine (ICM) at the University of Glasgow. <P>
The objectives of this programme will be: <OL> <LI> Capacity building – the creation of an advanced training programme that integrates state-of-the-art risk analysis, statistical methods and mathematical modelling, and is founded on robust scientific principles and sound clinical veterinary expertise. The programme will produce a cadre of veterinary researchers with relevant skills and experience, together with Masters students and undergraduates with training in and exposure to modern approaches to veterinary epidemiology. <LI> Advancing research – the development of clinically relevant, quantitative approaches to veterinary epidemiology that reflect the dynamic nature of animal populations and infectious agents and the development of generic methodologies for addressing quantitative issues in veterinary science. Individual projects will apply these methods to specific topics in infectious diseases of animals relevant to the UK. <LI> Informing policy – developing the techniques for, and applications of, evidence based design of disease control programmes, thus informing contingency planning, providing outputs useful to policy makers during an epidemic, and helping to prioritise resource allocations in advance of and during epidemics. The programme will provide a resource available to DEFRA for the duration of the VTRI funding and beyond.