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Decemmber 2011 Threshold behaviour of emerging epidemics featuring contact tracing
Frank G. Ball, Edward S. Knock, Philip D. O'Neill
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Adv. in Appl. Probab. 43(4): 1048-1065 (Decemmber 2011). DOI: 10.1239/aap/1324045698


This paper is concerned with a stochastic model for the spread of an epidemic with a contact tracing scheme, in which diagnosed individuals may name some of their infectious contacts, who are then removed if they have not been already. Traced individuals may or may not also be asked to name their own contacts. The epidemic is studied by considering an approximating, modified birth-death process with intersibling dependencies, for which a threshold parameter and expressions from which extinction probabilities may be calculated are derived. When all individuals can name their contacts, it is shown that this threshold parameter depends on the infectious period distribution only through its mean. Numerical studies show that the infectious period distribution choice can have a material effect on the threshold behaviour of an epidemic, while the dependencies help reduce spread.


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Frank G. Ball. Edward S. Knock. Philip D. O'Neill. "Threshold behaviour of emerging epidemics featuring contact tracing." Adv. in Appl. Probab. 43 (4) 1048 - 1065, Decemmber 2011.


Published: Decemmber 2011
First available in Project Euclid: 16 December 2011

zbMATH: 1229.92067
MathSciNet: MR2867945
Digital Object Identifier: 10.1239/aap/1324045698

Primary: 92D30
Secondary: 60J80

Keywords: branching process , contact tracing , reproduction number , Stochastic epidemic

Rights: Copyright © 2011 Applied Probability Trust


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Vol.43 • No. 4 • Decemmber 2011
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