Incorporating parameter uncertainty into Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA)

Donald, Margaret, Mengersen, Kerrie, Toze, Simon, Sidhu, Jatinder P. S. and Cook, Angus (2011) Incorporating parameter uncertainty into Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA). Journal of Water and Health, 9 1: 10-26. doi:10.2166/wh.2010.073

Author Donald, Margaret
Mengersen, Kerrie
Toze, Simon
Sidhu, Jatinder P. S.
Cook, Angus
Title Incorporating parameter uncertainty into Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA)
Journal name Journal of Water and Health   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1477-8920
Publication date 2011-03
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.2166/wh.2010.073
Volume 9
Issue 1
Start page 10
End page 26
Total pages 17
Place of publication London, England, U.K.
Publisher I W A Publishing
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Modern statistical models and computational methods can now incorporate uncertainty of the parameters used in Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessments (QMRA). Many QMRAs use Monte Carlo methods, but work from fixed estimates for means, variances and other parameters. We illustrate the ease of estimating all parameters contemporaneously with the risk assessment, incorporating all the parameter uncertainty arising from the experiments from which these parameters are estimated. A Bayesian approach is adopted, using Markov Chain Monte Carlo Gibbs sampling (MCMC) via the freely available software, WinBUGS. The method and its ease of implementation are illustrated by a case study that involves incorporating three disparate datasets into an MCMC framework. The probabilities of infection when the uncertainty associated with parameter estimation is incorporated into a QMRA are shown to be considerably more variable over various dose ranges than the analogous probabilities obtained when constants from the literature are simply 'plugged' in as is done in most QMRAs. Neglecting these sources of uncertainty may lead to erroneous decisions for public health and risk management.
Keyword Parameter Uncertainty
Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA)
Recycled water
Risk assessment
Salmonella spp.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 5 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 19 Mar 2012, 11:27:26 EST by Geraldine Fitzgerald on behalf of School of Public Health