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Publication . Article . 2012

Development of a resource modelling tool to support decision makers in pandemic influenza preparedness: The AsiaFluCap Simulator

Mart L. Stein; James W. Rudge; Richard Coker; Charlie P van der Weijden; Ralf Krumkamp; Piya Hanvoravongchai; Irwin Chavez; +8 Authors
Open Access
Published: 12 Oct 2012 Journal: BMC Public Health, volume 12, issue 1 (eissn: 1471-2458, Copyright policy )
Publisher: Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Country: United Kingdom
Abstract

Abstract Background Health care planning for pandemic influenza is a challenging task which requires predictive models by which the impact of different response strategies can be evaluated. However, current preparedness plans and simulations exercises, as well as freely available simulation models previously made for policy makers, do not explicitly address the availability of health care resources or determine the impact of shortages on public health. Nevertheless, the feasibility of health systems to implement response measures or interventions described in plans and trained in exercises depends on the available resource capacity. As part of the AsiaFluCap project, we developed a comprehensive and flexible resource modelling tool to support public health officials in understanding and preparing for surges in resource demand during future pandemics. Results The AsiaFluCap Simulator is a combination of a resource model containing 28 health care resources and an epidemiological model. The tool was built in MS Excel© and contains a user-friendly interface which allows users to select mild or severe pandemic scenarios, change resource parameters and run simulations for one or multiple regions. Besides epidemiological estimations, the simulator provides indications on resource gaps or surpluses, and the impact of shortages on public health for each selected region. It allows for a comparative analysis of the effects of resource availability and consequences of different strategies of resource use, which can provide guidance on resource prioritising and/or mobilisation. Simulation results are displayed in various tables and graphs, and can also be easily exported to GIS software to create maps for geographical analysis of the distribution of resources. Conclusions The AsiaFluCap Simulator is freely available software (http://www.cdprg.org) which can be used by policy makers, policy advisors, donors and other stakeholders involved in preparedness for providing evidence based and illustrative information on health care resource capacities during future pandemics. The tool can inform both preparedness plans and simulation exercises and can help increase the general understanding of dynamics in resource capacities during a pandemic. The combination of a mathematical model with multiple resources and the linkage to GIS for creating maps makes the tool unique compared to other available software.

Subjects by Vocabulary

Microsoft Academic Graph classification: Resource (project management) Medicine business.industry business Preparedness Geographic information system Public health medicine.medical_specialty Health care Simulation Evidence-based practice Task (project management) Pandemic

Library of Congress Subject Headings: lcsh:Public aspects of medicine lcsh:RA1-1270

Subjects

Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health, Pandemic influenza, Preparedness, Pandemic exercises, Public health officials, Decision making, Health care resources, Influenza modelling, Simulator, Software

Funded by
EC| ASIAFLUCAP
Project
ASIAFLUCAP
Health system analysis to support capacity development to respond to pandemic influenza in Asia
  • Funder: European Commission (EC)
  • Project Code: 201823
  • Funding stream: FP7 | SP1 | HEALTH
,
EC| ASIAFLUCAP
Project
ASIAFLUCAP
Health system analysis to support capacity development to respond to pandemic influenza in Asia
  • Funder: European Commission (EC)
  • Project Code: 201823
  • Funding stream: FP7 | SP1 | HEALTH
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BMC Public Health
Article . 2012
Providers: PubMed Central
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