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Revista de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 0124-0064


HINCAPIE, Doracelly  and  OSPINA, Juan. Modelling epidemics: the case of severe acute respiratory syndrome in Canada. Rev. salud pública [online]. 2007, vol.9, n.1, pp.117-128. ISSN 0124-0064.

Objective Severe acute respiratory syndrome propagation in Canada during 2003 is analysed by means of simple models, comparing the influence of isolation measures on two epidemic waves. Methods Deterministic susceptible-infected and susceptible-infected-removed models were used for both epidemic waves, using official published information. NLREG 6.2 was used for estimating deterministic parameters and analytical solutions were obtained with Maple 9 software. Dynamical indicators were obtained for the epidemic. Results Suitable adjustment of the data was observed with both models, but smaller adjustment was observed during the second wave with the non- removed model. The highest rate of infectiousness was shown (35 new cases per 10 000 susceptible people) during the second wave (with R0 near to one), in spite of presenting greater incidence (8.8 cases per day), compensated for by a high rate of removal (11,5 cases per day) which lasted less than the epidemic (11,1 days), and a lower rate of attack (1 case per each 100 susceptible people). Conclusions The susceptible-infected model can be useful during an epidemic's initial phase (prior to removal); however, closer monitoring of an epidemic's development is required for modelling the strength of removal and deriving useful information for decision-making.

Keywords : Theoretical model; severe acute respiratory syndrome; Canada.

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