Web-Based Prime Model

Sub-Project: Web-based “PRIME” (Preventable Risk Integrated ModEl)


The PRIME (Preventable Risk Integrated ModEl) comparative risk assessment model was developed by researchers at the British Heart Foundation Health Promotion Research Group, Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford. The main focus of the PRIME model is diet. The model contains 11 different dietary risk factors, associated with 17 non-communicable diseases via three intermediary risk factors (body weight, blood pressure and blood cholesterol).

The PRIME model also includes physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption as risk factor inputs, which allows the user to compare the health burden of diet with other non-dietary behavioural risk factors.

The model has previously been used to estimate deaths averted or delayed in the UK under the following scenarios: achieving dietary recommendations (Scarborough et al., 2010); removing geographic inequalities in dietary quality (Scarborough et al., 2011); achieving low carbon diets (Scarborough et al., 2012); and achieving optimum alcohol consumption (Nichols et al., 2012).

The user provides three pieces of information: the annual number of deaths from the different diseases in the PRIME model; the distribution of the risk factors within the population; and the counterfactual scenario to be modelled. The output from the PRIME model is the number of deaths that would be delayed or averted in a population in a given counterfactual scenario.

The model performs a Monte Carlo analysis with 5000 iterations to estimate the uncertainty in the results that is derived from uncertainty in the risk parameters derived from the epidemiological literature. Full details of the PRIME model are available here.

Aims of this sub-project

The purpose of this sub-project is to increase the user-friendliness and the available features of the PRIME model, and to make the updated PRIME model easily available on the Internet.

The finished web-based PRIME model should be ready for use in 2014.

If you are interested in using the PRIME model as is (ie. not the new, optimised web-version), please contact Dr Peter Scarborough.