Quantitatively predicting flu centre impact on Canadian healthcare resource use


There are several models used to predict the spread of disease in a pandemic, but few, if any, incorporate the effect of healthcare systems in preventing propagation of the disease. In areas where healthcare is easily available to the general public (specifically, countries with universal healthcare), the ability of infected individuals to receive rapid treatment should impact disease spread. Additionally, the presence of a pandemic will result in an increased load on the healthcare system as infected individuals seek medical attention at hospitals and from their family doctors. We modify an existing non-homogeneous, agent-based simulation pandemic disease spread model to incorporate a public healthcare system in a pandemic influenza simulation on the Greater Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada. Results show that healthcare availability significantly significantly increases disease spread due to increased contacts within the population. We also find that the creation of flu centers decreases flu-related deaths and decreases hospital admissions. ©2010 IEEE.

Proceedings of the Winter Simulation Annual Conference
Dionne M. Aleman, PhD, PEng
Dionne M. Aleman, PhD, PEng
Professor of Industrial Engineering