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  1. Abstract This research measures the epidemiological and economic impact of COVID-19 spread in the US under different mitigation scenarios, comprising of non-pharmaceutical interventions. A detailed disease model of COVID-19 is combined with a model of the US economy to estimate the direct impact of labor supply shock to each sector arising from morbidity, mortality, and lockdown, as well as the indirect impact caused by the interdependencies between sectors. During a lockdown, estimates of jobs that are workable from home in each sector are used to modify the shock to labor supply. Results show trade-offs between economic losses, and lives savedmore »and infections averted are non-linear in compliance to social distancing and the duration of the lockdown. Sectors that are worst hit are not the labor-intensive sectors such as the Agriculture sector and the Construction sector, but the ones with high valued jobs such as the Professional Services, even after the teleworkability of jobs is accounted for. Additionally, the findings show that a low compliance to interventions can be overcome by a longer shutdown period and vice versa to arrive at similar epidemiological impact but their net effect on economic loss depends on the interplay between the marginal gains from averting infections and deaths, versus the marginal loss from having healthy workers stay at home during the shutdown.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2022
  2. We study the role of vaccine acceptance in controlling the spread of COVID-19 in the US using AI-driven agent-based models. Our study uses a 288 million node social contact network spanning all 50 US states plus Washington DC, comprised of 3300 counties, with 12.59 billion daily interactions. The highly-resolved agent-based models use realistic information about disease progression, vaccine uptake, production schedules, acceptance trends, prevalence, and social distancing guidelines. Developing a national model at this resolution that is driven by realistic data requires a complex scalable workflow, model calibration, simulation, and analytics components. Our workflow optimizes the total execution time andmore »helps in improving overall human productivity.This work develops a pipeline that can execute US-scale models and associated workflows that typically present significant big data challenges. Our results show that, when compared to faster and accelerating vaccinations, slower vaccination rates due to vaccine hesitancy cause averted infections to drop from 6.7M to 4.5M, and averted total deaths to drop from 39.4K to 28.2K nationwide. This occurs despite the fact that the final vaccine coverage is the same in both scenarios. Improving vaccine acceptance by 10% in all states increases averted infections from 4.5M to 4.7M (a 4.4% improvement) and total deaths from 28.2K to 29.9K (a 6% increase) nationwide. The analysis also reveals interesting spatio-temporal differences in COVID-19 dynamics as a result of vaccine acceptance. To our knowledge, this is the first national-scale analysis of the effect of vaccine acceptance on the spread of COVID-19, using detailed and realistic agent-based models.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 15, 2022
  3. Abstract—Evacuation planning methods aim to design routes and schedules to relocate people to safety in the event of natural or man-made disasters. The primary goal is to minimize casualties which often requires the evacuation process to be completed as soon as possible. In this paper, we present QueST, an agent-based discrete event queuing network simulation system, and STEERS, an iterative routing algorithm that uses QueST for designing and evaluating large scale evacuation plans in terms of total egress time and congestion/bottlenecks occurring during evacuation. We use the Houston Metropolitan Area, which consists of nine US counties and spans an areamore »of 9,444 square miles as a case study, and compare the performance of STEERS with two existing route planning methods. We find that STEERS is either better or comparable to these methods in terms of total evacuation time and congestion faced by the evacuees. We also analyze the large volume of data generated by the simulation process to gain insights about the scenarios arising from following the evacuation routes prescribed by these methods.« less
  4. Abstract—It is well known that physical interdependencies exist between networked civil infrastructures such as transportation and power system networks. In order to analyze complex nonlinear correlations between such networks, datasets pertaining to such real infrastructures are required. However, such data are not readily available due to their proprietary nature. This work proposes a methodology to generate realistic synthetic power distribution networks for a given geographical region. A network generated in this manner is not the actual distribution system, but its functionality is very similar to the real distribution network. The synthetic network connects high voltage substations to individual residential consumersmore »through primary and secondary distribution networks. Here, the distribution network is generated by solving an optimization problem which minimizes the overall length of the network subject to structural and power flow constraints. This work also incorporates identification of long high voltage feeders originating from substations and connecting remotely situated customers in rural geographic locations while maintaining voltage regulation within acceptable limits. The proposed methodology is applied to the state of Virginia and creates synthetic distribution networks which are validated by comparing them to actual power distribution networks at the same location. Index Terms—synthetic distribution networks, radial networks, Mixed Integer Linear Programming« less
  5. Abstract We use an individual based model and national level epidemic simulations to estimate the medical costs of keeping the US economy open during COVID-19 pandemic under different counterfactual scenarios. We model an unmitigated scenario and 12 mitigation scenarios which differ in compliance behavior to social distancing strategies and in the duration of the stay-home order. Under each scenario we estimate the number of people who are likely to get infected and require medical attention, hospitalization, and ventilators. Given the per capita medical cost for each of these health states, we compute the total medical costs for each scenario andmore »show the tradeoffs between deaths, costs, infections, compliance and the duration of stay-home order. We also consider the hospital bed capacity of each Hospital Referral Region (HRR) in the US to estimate the deficit in beds each HRR will likely encounter given the demand for hospital beds. We consider a case where HRRs share hospital beds among the neighboring HRRs during a surge in demand beyond the available beds and the impact it has in controlling additional deaths.« less