INFORMS Open Forum

On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

  • 1.  On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 13 days ago
    Simulations such as These simulations show how to flatten the coronavirus growth curve are being discussed to determine social distancing for COVID-19 control.

    They seem to contain simplifying assumptions that I would challenge:
    1. Infection is modeled as binary (infected yes/no), ignores dosage effect, dosage probably drives virulence
    2. Missing deaths, treating all the infected cases as the same (a proxy for fixed virulence instead of a distribution of virulence)
    3. Permanent immunity after recovery, when immunity is usually variant-specific and therefore temporary against waves of variants
    4. Ignores successive waves of infection

    Running a better simulation with better-founded assumptions may change the decisions about social distancing. I would consider the null hypothesis to be a normally mingling population. The simulations would need to consider the base case of a variably-dosed mingling population where most infections are light doses with low virulence to assess the strategies that confer resilient immunity against waves of infection.

    Is there a better simulation that you know of?


  • 2.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 12 days ago
    I think this is a good System Dynamics based interactive model.
    https://exchange.iseesystems.com/public/isee/covid-19-simulator



    ------------------------------
    Zahir Balaporia
    ZahirBalaporia@fico.com
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  • 3.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 11 days ago
    Thank you, Zahir, this is a very nice simulation. Do you know if it's ready to be used?

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    Rahul Saxena
    Founder
    Cobot Systems
    Bangalore
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 11 days ago

    Multiple folks from the System Dynamics (SD) community have built models. Tom Fiddaman also made a video

    Tom Fiddaman's model/video
    https://metasd.com/2020/03/community-coronavirus-model-bozeman/

    Jeroen Struben's model
    https://forio.com/app/jeroen_struben/corona-virus-covid19-seir-simulator/index.html#introduction.html

    Tom Fiddaman's review of Struben's model
    https://metasd.com/2020/03/interactive-coronavirus-models/


    Bob Eberlein's model

    https://exchange.iseesystems.com/public/isee/covid-19-simulator/index.html#page1
    https://exchange.iseesystems.com/models/player/isee/covid-19-model


    Bob Eberlein will be presenting his work this Friday, March 27th 2-3PM ET in a Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) System Dynamics Collective Learning Meeting (CLM). I am waiting on details from him about the presentation. Please follow/join WPI SD for more info 

    https://twitter.com/WPISDclub

    https://www.linkedin.com/groups/1916314/

    Below is a link to sign up to be on the WPI System Dynamics Club mailing list:

    http://eepurl.com/dzmA4j


    Wish you and yours health and happiness!

    Sincerely,
    Christine Tang
    WPI System Dynamics Social Media Manager
    Interdisciplinary PhD Student in System Dynamics

     



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    Christine Tang
    Worcester MA
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  • 5.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 11 days ago

    Forgot to share the System Dynamics Society's page on COVID-19 with INFORMS folks...and I should share the INFORMS page on COVID-19 with SD folks
    https://www.systemdynamics.org/covid-19



    ------------------------------
    Christine Tang
    Worcester MA
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  • 6.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 8 days ago
    Please also check your SPAM/Junk folders if you signed up for the WPI System Dynamics mailing list. We use Mailchimp to manage the list and have had issues with some university email spam filters.

    Here is the info for this week's meeting for those who are interested in joining. We are a friendly/funny group.

    Join us online Friday, March 27th, 2:00 - 3:00 PM ET (Boston time) through:
    https://wpi.zoom.us/j/389429908

    See (far) below for call in details.

    In this week's Collective Learning Meeting (CLM), Dr. Bob Eberlein (bob@iseesystems.com) will present:

    "Understanding the Unknown: Trying to make COVID-19 discussion as transparent as possible"

    Abstract: There is a great deal of fear and uncertainty associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of the concern is certainly justified, but our ability to understand what is coming is very limited. Some of this is due to the nature of the disease itself. COVID-19 has a clear, but not clearly understood, period of asymptomatic transmission, and it is still not understood how many individuals can carry and pass the virus without ever showing symptoms. Further, with roughly 20% of infections being severe, the load on the health care system is, as have been evidenced in Italy, potentially overwhelming. This is, of course, exacerbated by the potential for hospital workers themselves to be overwhelmed by the disease as happened in Wuhan. Putting this together into a coherent framework with a model that transparently allows people to experiment with both policies and epidemiological assumption provides a lens into what might unfold and what can be done. The talk will focus on exploring that model and showing the ways in which it can inform our understanding of what is happening around us.

    Biography: Bob Eberlein is Co-President at isee systems. He holds a PhD from MIT in Applied Economics and System Dynamics. He has been teaching, consulting, and developing software in support of System Dynamics for over 30 years. He has done modeling in a variety of areas including demography, chronic disease progression, and health care system responses.



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    ------------------------------
    Christine Tang
    Worcester MA
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 8 days ago
    Thank you, Christine!

    Do you know if Dr. Bob Eberlein will enhance the model for these aspects:
    1) decay in immunity conferred by recovering from infection and donated-immunity based on plasma transfusions from the recently recovered (track the "immune and ready-to-work" population)
    2) s
    uccessive waves of infection, with each wave from a mutant variant against which previous-wave immunity doesn't work.

    ------------------------------
    Rahul Saxena
    Founder
    Cobot Systems
    Bangalore
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 8 days ago
    No problem, Rahul.

    I also just realized that the links I posted to the models above redirects through YouTube...apologies for that. I was using my colleague Tim's presentation https://youtu.be/GtxcCljnWOo on his analysis of COVID-19 as a place to share links because WPI SD doesn't currently have a website. This was also before the System Dynamics Society created the page on COVID-19.

    I am not sure but can ask Dr. Eberlein for you on Friday if you cannot attend. We will be recording the presentation and will post it to the WPI System Dynamics Club YouTube channel. Feel free to ask him yourself. He is pretty responsive to emails from what I've experienced.

    Dr. Jack Homer's model has waves of infection https://metasd.com/2020/03/model-covid-19-us/

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    Christine Tang
    Worcester MA
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  • 9.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 7 days ago
    Edited by Rahul Saxena 7 days ago
    Thanks, Christine. Dr. Homer's model is quite detailed, but it doesn't account for immunity decay and subsequent mutant waves. I ask these questions in the context of the 1918 flu pandemic.

    This article, ( https://caravanmagazine.in/amp/history/spanish-flu-1918-changed-india ) may provide some context to my question:
    The 1918 flu first appeared in India in June of that year, entering via the city of Bombay. From there it spread to Punjab and the United Provinces (present-day Uttar Pradesh) in July and August, before receding. When the second wave erupted in late September, it was barely recognisable as the same disease. Researchers believe that the virus may have undergone a critical mutation between the spring and the summer-possibly in those trenches of the Western Front-which rendered it far more dangerous. This wave peaked in October and receded in December, and there was a third wave in early 1919.


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    Rahul Saxena
    Bangalore
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  • 10.  RE: On simulations of social distancing for COVID-19

    Posted 7 days ago
      |   view attached
    I am not sure when they will update their models. From what I understand, Dr. Homer, Fiddaman and Eberlein have been building these models in their own spare time along with running their respective companies/consulting. Dr. Homer did send me his new slides (attached). He may present in a WPI System Dynamics Collective Learning Meeting at a later time depending on his consulting contracts.

    I am not familiar with Prof. Struben so I didn't contact him.

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    Christine Tang
    Worcester MA
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