I’ve been looking at early model-based projections for the coronavirus outbreak (SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19). The following post collects some things I’ve found informative. I’m eager to hear of new links in the comments.
This article has a nice summary, and some
The original SIR epidemic model, by Kermack and McKendrick. Very interesting to see how they thought about it in the pre-computer era, and how durable their analysis has been:
A data dashboard at Johns Hopkins:
A Lancet article that may give some hope for lower mortality:
The CDC’s flu forecasting activity:
Some literature, mostly “gray” preprints from MedRxiv, all open access:
- BeyondR0: the importance of contact tracing when predicting epidemics
- The Novel Coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, is Highly Contagious and More Infectious Than Initially Estimated
- A simple model for behaviour change in epidemics
- Notes on R0
- SARS: Lessons from Toronto
- Risk Assessment of Novel Coronavirus COVID-19Outbreaks Outside China
A podcast with some background on transmission from Richard Larson, MIT (intestine alert – not for the squeamish!):
- Resoundingly Human: A look inside the rapid spread of the coronavirus, what are we missing?
This blog post by Josh at Cassandra Capital collects quite a bit more interesting literature, and fits a simple SIR model to the data. I can’t vouch for the analysis because I haven’t looked into it in detail, but the links are definitely useful. One thing I note is that his fatality rate (12%) is much higher than in other sources I’ve seen (.5-3%) so hopefully things are less dire than shown here.
I had high hopes that social media might provide early links to breaking literature, but unfortunately the signal is swamped by rumors and conspiracy theories. The problem is made more difficult by naming – coronavirus, COVID19, SARS-CoV-2, etc. If you don’t include “mathematical model” or similar terms in your search, it’s really hopeless.
If your interested in exploring this yourself, the samples in the standard Ventity distribution include a family of infection models. I plan to update some of these and report back.