Losing and Winning Strategies of the Covid War

Nilotpal Chakravarti in Medium:

Every epidemic, including Covid-19, turns around a single equation,

R = N x p x (1-f).

N is the average number of persons who come into contact with an infected person while she is infectious;

p is the probability of the virus being transmitted during a contact;

f is the fraction of the population immune to the infection.

When an infected person comes into contact with an uninfected person she spreads the virus to the contact with probability p; the contact may either be immune or susceptible. The probability of being immune is f while that of being susceptible is1-f. So p x (1-f) is the probability of the contact becoming infected.

R — the Reproduction Number — is the average number of persons an infected person infects in turn. The disease grows exponentially if R is greater than 1; decays exponentially and dies away if R is less than 1; and persists at a steady rate if R is exactly 1.

The epidemic equation severely restricts the tactics that may be used against the Sars-CoV-2 or any other virus for which no cure or vaccine is available just as the rules of chess dictate how the game may be played.

More here.

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