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Heterogeneity in Epidemic Models and Its Effect on the Spread of Infection

Håkan Andersson and Tom Britton
Journal of Applied Probability
Vol. 35, No. 3 (Sep., 1998), pp. 651-661
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3215640
Page Count: 11
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Heterogeneity in Epidemic Models and Its Effect on the Spread of Infection
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Abstract

We first study an epidemic amongst a population consisting of individuals with the same infectivity but with varying susceptibilities to the disease. The asymptotic final epidemic size is compared with the corresponding size for a homogeneous population. Then we group a heterogeneous population into households, assuming very high infectivity within households, and investigate how the global infection pressure is affected by rearranging individuals between the households. In both situations considered, it turns out that whether or not homogenizing the individuals or households will result in an increased spread of infection actually depends on the infectiousness of the disease.

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