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Modeling COVID-19 Nonpharmaceutical Interventions: Exploring periodic NPI strategies.

Abstract

In April 2020, we developed a COVID-19 transmission model used as part of RAND's web-based COVID-19 decision support tool that compares the effects of different nonphar-maceutical public health interventions (NPIs) on health and economic outcomes. An interdis-ciplinary approach informed the selection and use of multiple NPIs, combining quantitative modeling of the health/economic impacts of interventions with qualitative assessments of other important considerations (e.g., cost, ease of implementation, equity). We previously published a description of our approach as a RAND report describing how the epidemiological model, the economic model, and a systematic assessment of NPIs informed the web-tool. This paper provides further details of our model, describes extensions that we made to our model since April, presents sensitivity analyses, and analyzes periodic NPIs. Our findings suggest that there are opportunities to shape the tradeoffs between economic and health outcomes by carefully evaluating a more comprehensive range of reopening policies. We consider strategies that periodically switch between a base NPI level and a higher NPI level as our working example.

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