An approach for improving the quality of country-level TB modelling

C. F. McQuaid, M. C. Clarkson, M. Bellerose, K. Floyd, R. G. White, N. A. Menzies, BRR Development Group

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Mathematical modelling is increasingly used to inform budgeting and strategic decision-making by national TB programmes. Despite the importance of these decisions, there is currently no mechanism to review and confirm the appropriateness of modelling analyses. We have developed a benchmarking, reporting, and review (BRR) approach and accompanying tools to allow constructive review of country-level TB modelling applications. This approach has been piloted in five modelling applications and the results of this study have been used to revise and finalise the approach. The BRR approach consists of 1) quantitative benchmarks against which model assumptions and results can be compared, 2) standardised reporting templates and review criteria, and 3) a multi-stage review process providing feedback to modellers during the application, as well as a summary evaluation after completion. During the pilot, use of the tools prompted important changes in the approaches taken to modelling. The pilot also identified issues beyond the scope of a review mechanism, such as a lack of empirical evidence and capacity constraints. This approach provides independent evaluation of the appropriateness of modelling decisions during the course of an application, allowing meaningful changes to be made before results are used to inform decision-making. The use of these tools can improve the quality and transparency of country-level TB modelling applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)614-619
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021


  • Benchmark
  • Policy
  • Reporting
  • Review
  • Strategic planning
  • Tuberculosis

Cite this