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COVID-19 Transmission and Forecasting in Kuwait: A Mathematical Modeling Study
22 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2020More...
Developing countries are struggling to control the COVID-19 outbreak, facing shortage in testing supplies and international competition. Many countries with relatively smaller populations like Kuwait have resorted to early lockdowns and aggressive public health interventions. Kuwait had its first imported case on Feb 24, 2020. Analysis of data from the early stage of COVID-19 outbreak in Kuwait can provide important information about the potential epidemic and healthcare burdens as well as assist in evaluating the potential impact of various outbreak control measures. Such control measures are essentially implemented to achieve a sufficient reduction in the effective reproduction number during an outbreak. In this study, we use a mathematical modeling framework to simulate the outbreak dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in Kuwait and forecast the potential burden on the healthcare system. We calibrate the model against daily numbers of detected infection and death cases using a maximum likelihood framework and estimate both the basic and effective reproduction numbers. Our results indicate that the early control measures implemented in Kuwait had the effect of delaying the intensity of the outbreak but were unsuccessful in reducing Rt below 1. This highlights a need for a systematic investigation of the current public health interventions as well as a scientific surveillance tool in developing countries that is sufficiently sensitive to outbreak temporal dynamics. Meanwhile, the developed model can serve as a public health tool to control the current outbreak. We enable the readers to replicate, adapt, consider alternative assumptions, and extend our model towards more complex generalizable scenarios in other countries.
Funding Statement: None.
Declaration of Interests: The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
Keywords: COVID-19, Mathematical Modeling, SARS-CoV-2, Public Health Intervention
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation