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Modelling digital and manual contact tracing for COVID-19.: Are low uptakes and missed contacts deal-breakers?

Modelling digital and manual contact tracing for COVID-19.: Are low uptakes and missed contacts deal-breakers?
Modelling digital and manual contact tracing for COVID-19.: Are low uptakes and missed contacts deal-breakers?
Comprehensive testing schemes, followed by adequate contact tracing and isolation, represent the best public health interventions we can employ to reduce the impact of an ongoing epidemic when no or limited vaccine supplies are available and the implications of a full lockdown are to be avoided. However, the process of tracing can prove feckless for highly-contagious viruses such as SARS-CoV-2. The interview-based approaches often miss contacts and involve significant delays, while digital solutions can suffer from insufficient adoption rates or inadequate usage patterns. Here we present a novel way of modelling different contact tracing strategies, using a generalized multi-site mean-field model, which can naturally assess the impact of manual and digital approaches alike. Our methodology can readily be applied to any compartmental formulation, thus enabling the study of more complex pathogen dynamics. We use this technique to simulate a newly-defined epidemiological model, SEIR-T, and show that, given the right conditions, tracing in a COVID-19 epidemic can be effective even when digital uptakes are sub-optimal or interviewers miss a fair proportion of the contacts.
Virus testing, COVID-19, Epidemiology, SARS-CoV-2, Epidemiological statistics, Pandemics, Social Network, Viral evolution
1932-6203
Rusu, Andrei
901b9bc5-f776-4046-b694-e302c40c31b3
Emonet, Rémi
f8acc8de-4813-470c-8a54-b3d765f24bea
Farrahi, Katayoun
bc848b9c-fc32-475c-b241-f6ade8babacb
Rusu, Andrei
901b9bc5-f776-4046-b694-e302c40c31b3
Emonet, Rémi
f8acc8de-4813-470c-8a54-b3d765f24bea
Farrahi, Katayoun
bc848b9c-fc32-475c-b241-f6ade8babacb

Rusu, Andrei, Emonet, Rémi and Farrahi, Katayoun (2021) Modelling digital and manual contact tracing for COVID-19.: Are low uptakes and missed contacts deal-breakers? PLoS ONE, 16 (11), [0259969]. (doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0259969).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Comprehensive testing schemes, followed by adequate contact tracing and isolation, represent the best public health interventions we can employ to reduce the impact of an ongoing epidemic when no or limited vaccine supplies are available and the implications of a full lockdown are to be avoided. However, the process of tracing can prove feckless for highly-contagious viruses such as SARS-CoV-2. The interview-based approaches often miss contacts and involve significant delays, while digital solutions can suffer from insufficient adoption rates or inadequate usage patterns. Here we present a novel way of modelling different contact tracing strategies, using a generalized multi-site mean-field model, which can naturally assess the impact of manual and digital approaches alike. Our methodology can readily be applied to any compartmental formulation, thus enabling the study of more complex pathogen dynamics. We use this technique to simulate a newly-defined epidemiological model, SEIR-T, and show that, given the right conditions, tracing in a COVID-19 epidemic can be effective even when digital uptakes are sub-optimal or interviewers miss a fair proportion of the contacts.

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journal.pone.0259969 - Version of Record
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 30 October 2021
Published date: 18 November 2021
Keywords: Virus testing, COVID-19, Epidemiology, SARS-CoV-2, Epidemiological statistics, Pandemics, Social Network, Viral evolution

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 454081
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/454081
ISSN: 1932-6203
PURE UUID: 6f540a79-efde-43f6-bba2-9f39f0405400
ORCID for Andrei Rusu: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6053-1685
ORCID for Katayoun Farrahi: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6775-127X

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 28 Jan 2022 17:33
Last modified: 07 Sep 2022 02:00

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Contributors

Author: Andrei Rusu ORCID iD
Author: Rémi Emonet
Author: Katayoun Farrahi ORCID iD

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