Background: The reproduction number is one of the most crucial parameters in determining disease dynamics, providing a summary measure of the transmission potential. However, estimating this value is particularly challenging owing to the characteristics of epidemic data, including non-reproducibility and incompleteness. Methods: In this study, we propose mathematical models with different population structures; each of these models can produce data on the number of cases of the influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 epidemic in South Korea. These structured models incorporating the heterogeneity of age and region are used to estimate the reproduction numbers at various terminal times. Subsequently, the age- and region-specific reproduction numbers are also computed to analyze the differences illustrated in the incidence data. Results: Incorporation of the age-structure or region-structure allows for robust estimation of parameters, while the basic SIR model provides estimated values beyond the reasonable range with severe fluctuation. The estimated duration of infectious period using age-structured model is around 3.8 and the reproduction number was estimated to be 1.6. The estimated duration of infectious period using region-structured model is around 2.1 and the reproduction number was estimated to be 1.4. The estimated age- and region-specific reproduction numbers are consistent with cumulative incidence for corresponding groups. Conclusions: Numerical results reveal that the introduction of heterogeneity into the population to represent the general characteristics of dynamics is essential for the robust estimation of parameters.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Infectious Diseases