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Modelling and assessing the effects of medical resources on transmission of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Wuhan, China

Liping Wang Jing Wang Hongyong Zhao Yangyang Shi Kai Wang Peng Wu Lei Shi

*Corresponding author: Hongyong Zhao Hyzho1967@126.com


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-2019), a newly emerging disease in China, posed a public health emergency of China. Wuhan is the most serious affected city. Some measures have been taken to control the transmission of COVID-19. From Jan. 23rd, 2020, gradually increasing medical resources (such as health workforce, protective clothing, essential medicines) were sent to Wuhan from other provinces, and the government has established the hospitals to quarantine and treat infected individuals. Under the condition of sufficient medical resources in Wuhan, late-stage of epidemic showed a downward trend. Assessing the effectiveness of medical resources is of great significance for the future response to similar disease. Based on the transmission mechanisms of COVID-19 and epidemic characteristics of Wuhan, by using time-dependent rates for some parameters, we establish a dynamical model to reflect the changes of medical resources on transmission of COVID-19 in Wuhan. Our model is applied to simulate the reported data on cumulative and new confirmed cases in Wuhan from Jan. 23rd to Mar. 6th, 2020. We estimate the basic reproduction number R0 = 2.71, which determines whether the disease will eventually die out or not under the absence of effective control measures. Moreover, we calculate the effective daily reproduction ratio Re(t), which is used to measure the ‘daily reproduction number’. We obtain that Re(t) drops less than 1 since Feb. 8th. Our results show that delayed opening the ‘Fire God Hill’ hospital will greatly increase the magnitude of the outbreak. This shows that the government’s timely establishment of hospitals and effective quarantine via quick detection prevent a larger outbreak.

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