A mathematical model predicts more than 28,000 infected in Spain at the end of the week - La Provincia

A mathematical model developed by Spanish researchers predicts that the number of infected by the new coronavirus in Spain would rise to more than 28,000 in three days, that is, for Sunday, March 22.

Developed by a team of researchers from the Computational Biology and Complex Systems research group (BIOCOM-SC) of the UPC and the Center for Comparative Medicine and Bioimaging (CMCiB) of the Germans Trias i Pujol Research Institute (IGTP), with the impulse de la Caixa, the model includes predictions for Spain, Catalonia and the European Union.

The model has already shown its effectiveness, since the predictions made for Spain on March 18 indicated that by day 19 there would be around 16,940 cases, with an error interval of 15,467-18,413. Data from the 19th provided by the Ministry of Health indicate that there are currently 17,147 cases.

For this Thursday, the model predicts that in Spain there will be 3,256 new cases throughout the day, and about 3,810 throughout this Friday. Thus, for Sunday the 22nd, the figure would rise to 28,431 positives in Covid-19, with a margin of error of 25,946-30,915. In the EU, he predicts that there will be a total of 112,557 infected this Friday, with a margin of error of 103,850-121,263.

The team of researchers analyzes for weeks Covid-19 incidence data in several countriesTherefore, it has developed a mathematical model that allows quantifying the situation in various areas (for example, autonomous communities) and countries, as well as a prediction of the evolution for the next three days.

The report they carry out and update daily is communicated to the European Commission Digital Excellence and Science Infrastructure general directory, led by Thomas Skordas. Researchers from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, the Joint Research Center, and Imperial College London also integrate this working group.

The model has been in operation for the past two weeks making short-term projections with a 99% confidence interval for different European countries with a correctly calibrated hit giving, therefore, the correct prediction in almost all predictions.

Soon, once its correct operation is assured, predictions will be incorporated within a week. The results of this model are incorporated every day in the progress report sent to the European working group.

Control measures

The report aims to provide a full picture of the pandemic situation of Covid-19 in the European countries and to be able to foresee the situation for the next days.

Using an empirical model, verified with the evolution of the number of confirmed cases in countries where the epidemic is about to end, including all the provinces of China, the model does not intend to interpret the causes of the evolution of the cases, but to evaluate the quality of the control measures carried out in each country and make a prediction of short-term trends.

According to the Caixa, it must be borne in mind, however, that the effects of the measures that are implemented on a given day They will not be seen until approximately 5-7 days later. Thus, it considers that, for the Spanish case, it is important to have the tool ready and working for this next weekend, when 6 days of the declaration of the State of Alarm are fulfilled.

"The availability of reliable tools like this can help make decisions today and, above all, face management in similar future situations," says the entity, which is collaborating on the project.


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