Simulation as Decision Support in Pandemic Influenza Preparedness and Response


Johan Jenvald, Magnus Morin, Toomas Timpka, Henrik Eriksson


Outbreak of a destructive pandemic influenza threatens to disrupt societies worldwide. International agencies and national governments have prepared plans and recommendations, but it is often decision-makers with the local authorities that are responsible for implementing the response. A central issue for these decision makers is what interventions are available and effective for the specific local community. The paper presents a simulator architecture and its relation to a workflow for decision support in influenza preparedness and response. The simulator can simulate pandemic scenarios, using localized community models, in the presence of various interventions to support an evaluation of potential response strategies. The architecture includes a customized modeling tool, separated from the simulation engine, which facilitates swift scenario modification and recalculation. This flexibility is essential both to explore alternative solutions in planning, and to adapt to changing requirements, information, and resources in outbreak response. An example simulation, based on actual population data from a reference city, illustrates the approach