The Spatiotemporal Estimation of the Dynamic Risk and the International Transmission of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak: A Global Perspective
25 Pages Posted: 28 Feb 2020More...
An ongoing novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia infection outbreak called COVID-19 started in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, in December 2019. It both spread rapidly to all provinces in China and started spreading around the world quickly through international human movement from January 2020. Currently, the spatiotemporal epidemic transmission patterns, prediction models, and possible risk analysis for the future are insufficient for COVID-19 but we urgently need relevant information, particularly from the global perspective.
We have developed a novel two-stage simulation model to simulate the spatiotemporal changes in the number of COVID-19 cases and estimate the future worldwide risk. Based on the connectivity of countries to China and the country's medical and epidemic prevention capabilities, different scenarios are generated to analyze the possible transmission throughout the world and use this information to evaluate each country’s vulnerability to and the dynamic risk of COVID-19.
Countries’ vulnerability to the COVID-19 outbreak from China is calculated for 63 countries around the world. Taiwan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Japan are the most vulnerable areas. The relationship between each country’s vulnerability and days before the first imported case occurred shows a very high exponential decrease. The cumulative number of cases in each country also has a linear relationship with vulnerability, which can compare and quantify the initial epidemic prevention capabilities to various countries’ management strategies. In total, 1,000 simulation results of future cases around the world are generated for the spatiotemporal risk assessment. According to the simulation results of this study, if there is no specific medicine for it, it will likely form a global pandemic. This method can be used as a preliminary risk assessment of the spatiotemporal spread for a new global epidemic.
Funding Statement: Funding support from the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) in Taiwan, project no. MOST 108-2636-E-008-004 (Young Scholar Fellowship Program).
Declaration of Interests: The authors declare no competing interests.
Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; novel coronavirus; spatiotemporal estimation; dynamic risk assessment
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