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Chapter 1 : Qualitative Risk Assessment

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Qualitative Risk Assessment, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

Codex Alimentarius (Codex) and World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) state that qualitative and quantitative risk assessments have equal validity. In this context “validity” means that, if all the requirements of each of the methods are equally well met, then these two methods are equally valid. This implies that, for these bodies at least, specific requirements must be met for acceptance as a valid qualitative risk assessment. This chapter describes such requirements, giving guidelines as to how they may be achieved and indicating some of the difficulties encountered and issues that arise. In both the Codex and OIE systems, a risk assessment is the term used to describe the complete process of assessing a risk. In both systems it is broken down into several stages. Looking specifically at Codex, those stages include hazard identification and hazard characterization, exposure assessment, and risk characterization. Qualitative risk assessments have been used extensively in import risk assessments of food products intended for human consumption, especially those of animal origin. Specific issues concerned with qualitative risk assessments discussed in this chapter include the reasons for use of a qualitative risk assessment, the differences between a complete qualitative risk assessment and the specific step of qualitative risk characterization (sometimes less distinct than in a quantitative risk assessment), and the complementary nature of qualitative and quantitative risk assessments.

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1

Key Concept Ranking

Quantitative Risk Assessment
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Risk Assessment
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Quinolones Veterinary Medicine
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References

/content/book/10.1128/9781555815752.ch01
1. Codex Alimentarius (Codex). 1999. Principles and Guidelines for the Conduct of a Microbiological Risk Assessment. Codex Alimentarius Commission CAC/GL-30. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, Italy.
2. Gallagher, E.,, J. Ryan,, L. Kelly,, Y. Leforban, and, M. Wooldridge. 2002. Estimating the risk of importation of foot-and-mouth disease into Europe. Vet. Rec. 150:769772.
3. Murray, N.,, S. C. MacDiarmid,, M. Wooldridge,, B. Gummow,, R. S. Morley,, S. E. Weber,, A. Giovannini, and, W. Wilson. 2004. OIE Handbook on Import Risk Analysis for Animals and Animal Products, vol. 1. Introduction and Qualitative Risk Analysis. World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), Paris, France.
4. Wooldridge, M. 1999. Qualitative risk assessment for antibiotic resistance. Case study: Salmonella typhimurium and the quinolone/fluoroquinolone class of antimicrobials. In Antibiotic Resistance in the European Union Associated with Therapeutic Use of Veterinary Medicines: Report and Qualitative Risk Assessment by the Committee for Veterinary Medicinal Products. European Medicines Evaluation Agency (EMEA), London, United Kingdom.
5. World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). 1999. Import risk analysis, chap. 4. In OIE Animal Health Code. World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), Paris, France.
6. World Trade Organization (WTO). 1998. Australia—Measures Affecting Importation of Salmon: Report of the Panel. World Trade Organization WT/DS18/R 12 June 1998. Geneva, Switzerland.

Tables

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Table 1

The minimum requirements of a risk assessment, summarized

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 2

Example of a possible tabular format for presenting data linked to risk estimates and conclusions

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 3

Example of a possible sectional format for presenting data linked to risk estimates and conclusions

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 4

A comparison of the computation of the final risk estimate (the risk characterization stage) in quantitative and qualitative risk assessments R1 and R2

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 5

An example of the “matrix” approach to risk characterization

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 6

An example of a risk pathway described in tabular format

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 7

An example of questions and subquestions showing the headings used, and thus the order of data presentation, conforming closely to the identified steps in the risk pathway, in this example based on a real qualitative risk assessment

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 8

Recorded infection with in humans in region R (by district D) for year Y1 (or year Y2*): incidence rate per 100 humans per year

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1
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Table 9

An example of the risk characterization stage (or risk assessment summary) of a qualitative risk assessment

Citation: Wooldridge M. 2008. Qualitative Risk Assessment, p 1-28. In Schaffner D, Doyle M (ed), Microbial Risk Analysis of Foods. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815752.ch1

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