Some livestock movements that are allowed to occur under current regulations might be disallowed under others, e.g. if standstill exemptions are discontinued. Also, some farmers might change their pattern of moving livestock if for example, standstill periods were reduced.
- Redirecting (“rewiring”) of livestock movements via a set of simple rules and with standstill exemption prohibited, an analysis of epidemic size showed that this will reduce the probability of large outbreaks (Figure 2), with these outbreaks also reduced in spatial extent (Figure 3).
- Without exemptions, a shorter movement standstill (6-days) is almost as effective as a longer standstill period (13-days), indicating that a simpler system would present minimal additional risk for FMD (Figure 2).
- Our results suggest that explicitly manipulating the contact network structure in a sensible way has the potential to significantly impact disease control.