Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Estimation of Unreported Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) Infections from Reported Deaths: a Susceptible Exposed Infectious Recovered Dead Model

Version 1 : Received: 4 April 2020 / Approved: 6 April 2020 / Online: 6 April 2020 (12:30:42 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Maugeri, A.; Barchitta, M.; Battiato, S.; Agodi, A. Estimation of Unreported Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) Infections from Reported Deaths: A Susceptible–Exposed–Infectious–Recovered–Dead Model. J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9, 1350. Maugeri, A.; Barchitta, M.; Battiato, S.; Agodi, A. Estimation of Unreported Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) Infections from Reported Deaths: A Susceptible–Exposed–Infectious–Recovered–Dead Model. J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9, 1350.

Journal reference: J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9, 1350
DOI: 10.3390/jcm9051350

Abstract

In the midst of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) epidemic, examining reported case data could lead to biased speculations and conclusions. Indeed, estimation of unreported infections is crucial for a better understanding of the current emergency in China and in other countries. In this study, we aimed to estimate the unreported number of infections in China prior to 23 March 2020 restrictions. To do that, we developed a Susceptible-Exposed-Infectious-Recovered-Dead (SEIRD) model which estimated unreported cases and infections from the reported number of deaths. Our approach relied on the fact that observed deaths were less likely to be affected by reporting biases than reported infections. Interestingly, we estimated that R0 was 2.43 (95%CI= 2.42 – 2.44) at the beginning of the epidemic, and that 92.9% (95%CI= 92.5% - 93.1%) of total cases were not reported. Similarly, the proportion of unreported new infections by day ranged from 52.1% to 100%, with a total of 91.8% (95%CI= 91.6% - 92.1%) unreported infections. Agreement between our estimates and those from previous studies proved that our approach was reliable to estimate prevalence and incidence of undocumented SARS-CoV2 infections. Once tested on Chinese data, our model could be applied on other countries with different surveillance and testing policies.

Subject Areas

novel coronavirus; epidemiology; COVID-19; epidemic model

Comments (0)

We encourage comments and feedback from a broad range of readers. See criteria for comments and our diversity statement.

Leave a public comment
Send a private comment to the author(s)
Views 0
Downloads 0
Comments 0
Metrics 0


×
Alerts
Notify me about updates to this article or when a peer-reviewed version is published.