Since the earliest outbreak of COVID-19, the disease continues to obstruct life normalcy in many parts of the world. The present work proposes a mathematical framework to improve non-pharmaceutical interventions during the new normal before vaccination settles herd immunity. The considered approach is built from the viewpoint of decision makers in developing countries where resources to tackle the disease from both a medical and an economic perspective are scarce. Spatial auto-correlation analysis via global Moran’s index and Moran’s scatter is presented to help modulate decisions on hierarchical-based priority for healthcare capacity and interventions (including possible vaccination), finding a route for the corresponding deployment as well as landmarks for appropriate border controls. These clustering tools are applied to sample data from Sri Lanka to classify the 26 Regional Director of Health Services (RDHS) divisions into four clusters by introducing convenient classification criteria. A metapopulation model is then used to evaluate the intra- and inter-cluster contact restrictions as well as testing campaigns under the absence of confounding factors. Furthermore, we investigate the role of the basic reproduction number to determine the long-term trend of the regressing solution around disease-free and endemic equilibria. This includes an analytical bifurcation study around the basic reproduction number using Brouwer Degree Theory and asymptotic expansions as well as related numerical investigations based on path-following techniques. We also introduce the notion of average policy effect to assess the effectivity of contact restrictions and testing campaigns based on the proposed model’s transient behavior within a fixed time window of interest.
- Bifurcation theory
- Metapopulation model
- Path-following-based continuation
- Spatial auto-correlation