Development of reporting guidelines for animal health surveillance – AHSURED

Arianna Comin*, John Grewar, Gerdien van Schaik, Heinzpeter Schwermer, Julie Pare, Farouk El Allaki, Julian Drewe, Ana Carolina Lopes Antunes, Leah Estberg, Michael Horan, Francisco Fernando Calvo Artavia, Abdurrahman H. Jibril, Marta Martinez Aviles, Yves van der Stede, Sotiria-Eleni Antoniou, Ann Lindberg

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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    With the current trend in animal health surveillance towards risk-based designs and a gradual transition to output-based standards, greater flexibility in surveillance design is both required and allowed. However, the increase in flexibility requires more transparency regarding surveillance, its activities, design and implementation. Such transparency allows stakeholders, trade partners, decision-makers and risk assessors to accurately interpret the validity of the surveillance outcomes.
    This paper presents the first version of the Animal Health Surveillance Reporting Guidelines (AHSURED) and the process by which they have been developed. The goal of AHSURED was to produce a set of reporting guidelines that supports communication of surveillance activities in the form of narrative descriptions.
    Reporting guidelines come from the field of evidence-based medicine and their aim is to improve consistency and quality of information reported in scientific journals. They usually consist of a checklist of items to be reported, a description/definition of each item, and an explanation and elaboration document. Examples of well-reported items are frequently provided. Additionally, it is common to make available a website where the guidelines are documented and maintained.
    This first version of the AHSURED guidelines consists of a checklist of 40 items organized in 11 sections (i.e. surveillance system building blocks), which is available as a wiki at The choice of a wiki format will allow for further inputs from surveillance experts who were not involved in the earlier stages of development. This will promote an up-to-date refined guideline document.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number426
    JournalFrontiers in Veterinary Science
    Number of pages8
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


    • Animal health surveillance
    • Reporting guidelines
    • Harmonization
    • Expert elicitation
    • Output-based standards


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