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    Garira, Winston Mathebula, Dephney and Netshikweta, Rendani 2014. A mathematical modelling framework for linked within-host and between-host dynamics for infections with free-living pathogens in the environment. Mathematical Biosciences, Vol. 256, p. 58.

    Lahodny, G.E. Gautam, R. and Ivanek, R. 2015. Estimating the probability of an extinction or major outbreak for an environmentally transmitted infectious disease. Journal of Biological Dynamics, Vol. 9, Issue. sup1, p. 128.

    Wang, Xueying Gautam, Raju Pinedo, Pablo J. Allen, Linda J. S. and Ivanek, Renata 2014. A stochastic model for transmission, extinction and outbreak of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in cattle as affected by ambient temperature and cleaning practices. Journal of Mathematical Biology, Vol. 69, Issue. 2, p. 501.

    Ivanek, Renata and Lahodny, Glenn 2015. From the bench to modeling – R0 at the interface between empirical and theoretical approaches in epidemiology of environmentally transmitted infectious diseases. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, Vol. 118, Issue. 2-3, p. 196.

    Bani-Yaghoub, Majid Gautam, Raju Shuai, Zhisheng van den Driessche, P. and Ivanek, Renata 2012. Reproduction numbers for infections with free-living pathogens growing in the environment. Journal of Biological Dynamics, Vol. 6, Issue. 2, p. 923.


Effectiveness of environmental decontamination as an infection control measure

  • M. BANI-YAGHOUB (a1), R. GAUTAM (a1), D. DÖPFER (a2), C. W. KASPAR (a3) and R. IVANEK (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 18 May 2011

The effectiveness of environmental decontamination (ED) as a measure in the control of infectious diseases is controversial. This work quantifies the effectiveness of ED by analysing the transmission of pathogens from the environment to susceptible hosts in a Susceptible–Infected–Susceptible model. Analysis of the model shows that ED can render a population disease-free only when the duration of infection (D) is within a certain range. As host-to-host transmission rate is increased, D falls outside this range and the higher levels of ED have a diminishing return in reducing the number of infected hosts at endemic equilibrium. To avoid this, ED can be combined with other control measures, such as treating infected individuals to push the duration of infection into the specified range. We propose decision criteria and minimum ED efforts required for control policies to be effective.

Corresponding author
*Author for correspondence: Dr M. Bani-Yaghoub, Texas A & M University, Veterinary Integrative Biosciences, 4458 TAMUS College Station, TX 77843-4458, USA. (Email:
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Epidemiology & Infection
  • ISSN: 0950-2688
  • EISSN: 1469-4409
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