10 Influenza Pandemic Models

By Claude Penland, Associate of the Casualty Actuarial Society www.CatRisky.com

What are we doing?
• We will discuss some different types of influenza pandemic models. • This is not intended to be a comprehensive look at the state of pandemic modeling, and instead is merely a discussion of some interesting flu pandemic models.

What is a Pandemic?
• Pandemics are infectious disease epidemics that spread across a wide region. • Recent pandemics include the flu pandemic of 2009 and the HIV pandemic. • Historical pandemics have also included outbreaks of tuberculosis and smallpox.

1. Society of Actuaries
• The Society of Actuaries’ model evaluates the potential impact on the United States life insurance industry. • Actuarial analysis looks at possible economic effects as well as potential excess insured mortality.

2. Pandemic Influenza Policy Model
• Military Medicine looks at a policy model for military public health officials. • This Pandemic Influenza Policy Model (PIPM) is a collaborative computer modeling effort between the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and U.S. Department of Defense. • Incidentally, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s “Best Practices and Model Protocols” provides many interesting discussions of model inputs.

3. Risk Management Solutions
• The model by a catastrophe risk modeling firm, Risk Management Solutions (RMS), supplies thousands of unique pandemic scenarios. • These vary based on demographics, virus infectiousness, vaccine production and efficacy, lethality of virus and pandemic lifecycle. • Additional information is available at “Managing Influenza Pandemic Risk”.

4. FluTE
• FluTE is an open source model. • The model is calibrated so that outcomes are consistent with the 2009 pandemic A(H1N1) and 1957/1958 Asian A(H2N2) influenza viruses.

5. Milliman
• Milliman, a consulting actuary, has modeled pandemics so that they may price mortality catastrophe bonds. • It is an actuarial model based on a frequency and severity approach.

6. Epidemic Simulation System
• The National Infrastructure Simulation and Analysis Center (NISAC), which is at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, has the Epidemic Simulation System (EpiSimS). • EpiSimS models the U.S. as fifteen regions. • Each region is composed of around 20 million synthetic individuals.

7. INFORMS Simulation Society
• At the INFORMS Simulation Society Winter Conference of 2009, a paper was presented on a simulation model for pandemic preparedness planning. • The paper presents a geospatial and temporal disease spread model for flu pandemics with particular attention paid to school closings.

8. Global Epidemic Model
• The Global Epidemic Model (GEM) enables testing of intervention strategies. • It uses uses population data and airline travel data to create an air travel network among the major metropolitan areas of the world. • It then models the course of the potential epidemic as it spreads around the world.

9. VirSim
• VirSim was developed to help support policy making. • Governments can decide on intervention strategies, and lost work and hospitalization effects on society are documented.

10. University of South Florida
• The University of South Florida’s model performs simulations for development of dynamic mitigation strategies.

Other Models
• Some other models include Georgia Tech’s, The University of Western Australia’s, a Biological Model for Influenza Transmission, a model of Japan and an Avian-human influenza epidemic model.

Other Sources
• Additional sources are PandemicSimulation.com, a pandemic simulation community website, NPR, The Scientist and MAA. • See www.CatRisky.com for catastrophe risk trends and news. • Thank you!

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