April 27 2009 ~ DEFRA's more "risk-based approach" to monitoring and enforcement..
It was pointed out in the Blogosphere this morning that the Budget Red Book reveals DEFRA's plan to cut £44 million from
"animal disease surveillance through a more risk-based approach to monitoring and enforcement and by sharing costs with industry"(This is at the bottom of page 131 as part of DEFRA's £381 million savings plan. ) Would any reader care to comment on what might constitute the definition of a "more risk-based approach"?
One remembers the Department's risk-based approach of ignoring Pirbright's pleas for the updating of their facilities some time before the escape of the FMD virus in August 2007 and then the risk-based decision to kill inside and around farms rather than use available supplies of emergency vaccination. Many experts on the ground advised that it would prevent spread. (Instead, it will be recalled with gloom, infection reached the very edge of Windsor Great Park and caused enormous losses throughout the country.)
Defra's decision in February to break its funding commitment for Pirbright re-development risks a formerly first-class international reference laboratory committed to public service sinking even further into a commercial mire might be considered risk-based. And what is "risk-based enforcement"? Has anyone any idea? One would be grateful to know.