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Understanding the Impact of At Risk Populations for Analyzing Zika Virus in Central & South American Countries

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Deborah Shutt, Colorado School of Mines

  • Colloquium
When Wed, Feb 15, 2017
from 11:00 AM to 11:50 AM
Where Ritter Hall 323
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Abstract:  Mosquito-borne diseases contribute significantly to the overall morbidity and mortality caused by infectious diseases in Central and South America. Newly emergent pathogens such as Zika virus in 2015 highlight the need for data and models to help understand the public health impact and develop mitigation strategies. Since Zika virus is newly emerging in the Americas, its impact on the na ̈ıve population is unknown. We develop a mathemat- ical model for the population dynamics of the 2015 outbreak of Zika virus in Colombia, El Salvador, and Suriname. The at-risk population depends on a number of factors such as climate, elevation, population density, and sanitation. Thus, we use a susceptible popula- tion size that is based on historically reported incidence rates for dengue from Colombia, El Salvador, and Suriname, as dengue and Zika overlap geographically and share a com- mon vector, Aedes aegypti. We use publicly available data provided by the Pan American Health Organization to parametrize our model and Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) to estimate parameter distributions. We estimated the basic reproductive number and our results show that the expected number of new human infections arising from a single infected human is between 4 and 6 people depending on the country. Additionally, our model estimates reporting rates for Zika to range between 13% - 27% within these nations. 

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