Developing Optimal Policies to Fight Pandemics and COVID-19 Combat in the United States

Eyüp Çetin, Serap Kiremitci, Barış Kiremitci

Abstract

The world has faced many outbreaks and pandemics with hundreds of millions of deaths throughout its history. Those epidemics are global health concerns and as well as serious economic issues. There is certain need to allocate scarce sources efficiently to fight such epidemics in both personal and global dimensions. Here we develop and propose two optimization models to maximize the total protection from any epidemic, pandemic or bioterror attacks; the first one is personal protection model or protocol and the other one is mass protection model that is inspired by the well-known weapon-target assignment problem of operations research. These efforts are optimal allocation of scarce medical and economic resources to save millions of lives- gift of life. We implement our general mathematical programming models with real-world data to fight the coronavirus pandemic for a person and the United States. Our personal protection protocol provides 99.99% protection from COVID-19 for an American through personal strategies when the mass protection model supplies 96.961% protection on average from coronavirus pandemic for the United States through across country policies. The mass protection model which recommends general policy frame for health care policy makers could be applied for any epidemic at any level from county to city, to state and country as well as in global scale. The mathematical relation between the personal protection protocol and the mass protection model also highlights the fact of unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno (one for all, all for one) for fighting epidemics- particularly the moving enemy, novel coronavirus which is double invisible due to its viral nature and the availability of the high level of asymptomatic cases. Recognize the enemy, as protecting yourself means protecting people, love life, follow the rules and stay at home. That is the greatest ever social impact.

Published on 28 April 2020.

Keywords

COVID-19, novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, 2019-nCoV, pandemic, epidemic, outbreak, health policy, public health, weapon-target assignment

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