An optimization model for influenza A epidemics
A deterministic model is developed to describe a single wave of influenza A in a closed stratified population. The model specifies agent characteristics and nonhomogeneous mixing patterns among various age groups in a standardized American community. Attack rates predicted by the model for the Asian and Hong Kong strains of influenza are found to agree with those predicted by a previously described stochastic simulation model. The deterministic model is then coupled with an optimization formulation which selects the optimal vaccine distribution pattern among the various age groups when there is a limited quantity of vaccine available. Optimal vaccine distribution patterns are given. These patterns are found to vary, depending on the particular strain of influenza A modeled, the quantity of vaccine available, and the “cost” structure of the objective function.