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Mobility restrictions for the control of epidemics: When do they work?
PLoS One. 2020; 15(7):e0235731.Plos

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Mobility restrictions-trade and travel bans, border closures and, in extreme cases, area quarantines or cordons sanitaires-are among the most widely used measures to control infectious diseases. Restrictions of this kind were important in the response to epidemics of SARS (2003), H1N1 influenza (2009), Ebola (2014) and, currently in the containment of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. However, they do not always work as expected.

METHODS

To determine when mobility restrictions reduce the size of an epidemic, we use a model of disease transmission within and between economically heterogeneous locally connected communities. One community comprises a low-risk, low-density population with access to effective medical resources. The other comprises a high-risk, high-density population without access to effective medical resources.

FINDINGS

Unrestricted mobility between the two risk communities increases the number of secondary cases in the low-risk community but reduces the overall epidemic size. By contrast, the imposition of a cordon sanitaire around the high-risk community reduces the number of secondary infections in the low-risk community but increases the overall epidemic size.

INTERPRETATION

Mobility restrictions may not be an effective policy for controlling the spread of an infectious disease if it is assessed by the overall final epidemic size. Patterns of mobility established through the independent mobility and trade decisions of people in both communities may be sufficient to contain epidemics.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Simon A. Levin Mathematical and Computational Modeling Sciences Center, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, United States of America.Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, United States of America.School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, United States of America.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

32628716

Citation

Espinoza, Baltazar, et al. "Mobility Restrictions for the Control of Epidemics: when Do They Work?" PloS One, vol. 15, no. 7, 2020, pp. e0235731.
Espinoza B, Castillo-Chavez C, Perrings C. Mobility restrictions for the control of epidemics: When do they work? PLoS ONE. 2020;15(7):e0235731.
Espinoza, B., Castillo-Chavez, C., & Perrings, C. (2020). Mobility restrictions for the control of epidemics: When do they work? PloS One, 15(7), e0235731. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0235731
Espinoza B, Castillo-Chavez C, Perrings C. Mobility Restrictions for the Control of Epidemics: when Do They Work. PLoS ONE. 2020;15(7):e0235731. PubMed PMID: 32628716.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Mobility restrictions for the control of epidemics: When do they work? AU - Espinoza,Baltazar, AU - Castillo-Chavez,Carlos, AU - Perrings,Charles, Y1 - 2020/07/06/ PY - 2020/04/06/received PY - 2020/06/22/accepted PY - 2020/7/7/entrez PY - 2020/7/7/pubmed PY - 2020/7/16/medline SP - e0235731 EP - e0235731 JF - PloS one JO - PLoS ONE VL - 15 IS - 7 N2 - BACKGROUND: Mobility restrictions-trade and travel bans, border closures and, in extreme cases, area quarantines or cordons sanitaires-are among the most widely used measures to control infectious diseases. Restrictions of this kind were important in the response to epidemics of SARS (2003), H1N1 influenza (2009), Ebola (2014) and, currently in the containment of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. However, they do not always work as expected. METHODS: To determine when mobility restrictions reduce the size of an epidemic, we use a model of disease transmission within and between economically heterogeneous locally connected communities. One community comprises a low-risk, low-density population with access to effective medical resources. The other comprises a high-risk, high-density population without access to effective medical resources. FINDINGS: Unrestricted mobility between the two risk communities increases the number of secondary cases in the low-risk community but reduces the overall epidemic size. By contrast, the imposition of a cordon sanitaire around the high-risk community reduces the number of secondary infections in the low-risk community but increases the overall epidemic size. INTERPRETATION: Mobility restrictions may not be an effective policy for controlling the spread of an infectious disease if it is assessed by the overall final epidemic size. Patterns of mobility established through the independent mobility and trade decisions of people in both communities may be sufficient to contain epidemics. SN - 1932-6203 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/32628716/Mobility_restrictions_for_the_control_of_epidemics:_When_do_they_work L2 - http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0235731 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -