Title: Simulations of COVID-19 spread by spatial agent-based model and ordinary differential equations

Authors: Shan Bai

Addresses: Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT), Institute for Thermal Energy Technology and Safety (ITES), Research Group Accident Management Systems (UNF), Hermann-von-Helmholtz Platz 1, D-76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany

Abstract: The COVID-19 outbreak is currently the biggest public health issue in the world. In this paper, the epidemic spread is modelled via two structurally different approaches, a system of first-order ordinary differential equations (ODEs) and spatial agent-based model (ABM). Specific intervention strategies are introduced and the effectiveness of the strategies can be assessed by comparing the results with/without these strategies. The simulation results are qualitatively affected by different parameter settings of the ODEs-based model; hence precision of input parameters characterising the spread is of great importance. The implementation of spatial ABM brings novel features to the epidemics modelling: new states being easily incorporated; the parameter illustrating the moving willingness of people; and sub-models for hospital beds to reflect demands of medical resources. Our results suggest that the flexible characteristics of ABM render it a useful addition to the tool set of epidemics simulation models so as to figure out new effective strategies.

Keywords: agent-based model; ordinary differential equation; epidemic model; COVID-19.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSPM.2020.107334

International Journal of Simulation and Process Modelling, 2020 Vol.15 No.3, pp.268 - 277

Received: 14 Apr 2020
Accepted: 15 Apr 2020

Published online: 07 May 2020 *

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