Most veterinarians have either none or very little teaching in the economic background of diseases and the use of economics to support veterinary decisions. This lack of knowledge is in contrast to the increasing importance of economics in farming. Due to a globalizing world, an increased importance of trade of animals and animal products, and the large attention for zoonoses, costs of diseases become more and more important. Animal diseases are an important cost factor in many farm systems. Moreover, there is a large variation in the level of costs caused by a non-optimal animal health status, which opens the possibility of improvement.
Animal Health Economics play an important role in the often risky decisions that need to be made about disease control. Many economic tools have been developed and are being applied to support decisions in the field of animal health.
After studying this course you should be able to contribute in an informed manner to economic decision making discussions and evaluate the economic decisions of others.