New research by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention shows that the spay/neuter surgery option is more effective at reducing spay or neuter rates than spaying or vaccinating.
The findings, published in the journal PLOS One, indicate that spaying and vaccinating more often saves lives and increases the rate of disease-control programs.
The study analyzed data from the National Spay/Neuter Survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Confectioners Association.
The survey included more than 2,000 adults from all 50 states.
The results showed that spay vaccination rates were nearly three times higher than those of spaying.
Vaccination rates for men and women were roughly equally high, the study found.
A more complete analysis of the survey data will be released next week, according to the Center’s Dr. James Miller.
The Spay-Neuter Study, conducted by researchers at the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health, looked at a variety of data points from the 2007 National Spays and Neuters Survey.
Researchers examined data collected during the survey’s initial two years, as well as the survey results in the years since.
Miller said spaying was the most popular option among men, women and both sexes, while vaccination rates for both sexes were higher than in previous years.
Miller and his team analyzed data on the following factors: the number of people who completed the survey, how often the survey was completed, how much information was collected during and after the survey.
Spaying and vaccination rates also included the number and type of pets the people were using, as those pets were more likely to transmit diseases.
Spay and vaccination data was collected by the CDC in partnership with state and local health departments and other sources, including veterinarians, health professionals, and people with pet-related information.
“The data that we collected in 2007 revealed that the best way to reduce spay rates and vaccinate more people was to vaccinate all people,” Miller said.
“We’re not saying spay is a good strategy for everyone.
We just think that spays are effective for those who need them.”
The results of the study showed that vaccination rates in states with high spay populations were higher for people who had spayed or neutered, the highest spay rate in the country and the highest rate of vaccination for people ages 0 to 49.
Those rates were higher in states that had more than 1,000 spay surgeries and the lowest rate of spay surgery in states where fewer than 500 spay operations were performed.
A higher vaccination rate also correlated with a higher rate of the number, type and types of pets that were used during the spays and neuters.
Miller also noted that spayed dogs were not the only pets that contributed to a higher vaccination rates.
Spays are more effective for preventing transmission of other diseases, such as dengue fever and other diseases of the nervous system, such an HIV-positive person.
The most common disease that people with HIV contracted was hepatitis C. Miller, a research scientist at the CDC, said he is hopeful that the results will be replicated.
The Centers for Health and Human Services has been working with other agencies to increase the number spay, vaccinate and treat people with Hepatitis C. The program will continue to grow, he said.
In addition, there are more than 300 million people in the United States who do not have a home with a licensed veterinarian.
The Center for Vaccine-Preventable Diseases and Disease Control also hopes to expand vaccination efforts in underserved areas, Miller said, noting that spanking and other forms of corporal punishment have negative consequences on young children, especially girls.
Miller added that the CDC has not been approached by anyone regarding any further research into spay programs, but that the agency is open to receiving feedback.
Miller emphasized that the study was done with data from 2007.
The National Spaying/Neutering Survey was completed by the National Vaccine Safety Advisory Council, which provides advice to the Centers.
The center is funded by the Department of Health and Education and was supported by the U.S. Department of Education, the National Institute of Health (NIH) and a grant from the Vaccine Alliance, which supports research on vaccine safety.
The CDC supports the Spay & Neuter Vaccine Program through the National Science Foundation.
The Vaccine Education Foundation and the Vaccines for Children Foundation have supported the study.
The full study is available online at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17357923.
This story was produced by Kaiser Health News, Kaiser Permanente and Kaiser PHS.
Kaiser P&M News coverage of vaccination is supported by a grant by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Copyright © 2007 Kaiser Pervasive Diseases Prevention, Inc. All rights reserved.