Economic evaluation of neonatal health protection programs for cattle

R. L. Larson, V. L. Pierce, R. F. Randle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective - To develop an economic tool that can be used to help cattle producers evaluate benefits of neonatal health programs. Design - Computer simulation of a multiple-year spreadsheet model, using economic and production variables. Sample Population - Records for a university research farm beef herd. Procedure - Data from the university research farm beef herd for each year from 1990 to 1995 were evaluated to determine economic benefits for the cow-calf enterprise that would result from a decrease in morbidity and mortality. A baseline economic evaluation of returns to variable costs was performed, using actual production and marketing information. Actual economic performance was contrasted with a projected simulation in which morbidity and mortality were decreased. Sensitivity analysis for the simulation model assessment of a neonatal health program was also performed. Results - Mean-per-cow increase in net income for the herd during the 6-year period for morbidity and mortality reductions of 20, 40, and 60% was $7.44, $14.93, and $22.42, respectively. Sensitivity analysis revealed that net income per cow was not sensitive to errors in projections of morbidity and mortality. Clinical Implications - Identifying potential economic benefits for implementing a neonatal health plan and quantifying the costs to implement each component of the plan can be used by veterinarians and their clients when formulating a proactive strategy to provide the greatest potential for economic reward.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)810-816
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 15 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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