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Compartmental and Simulation Models for Evaluating MedKit Prepositioning Strategies for Anthrax Attack Response
Houck, Michelle Lee
Herrmann, Jeffrey W
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Since the 2001 anthrax attacks, public health officials have become concerned with planning for a potential large scale attack. Researchers have worked to model attack scenarios in order to evaluate various response policies. One response policy that has been proposed is to preemptively distribute antibiotics to the public in the form of MedKits before an attack occurs. Despite numerous models and studies, there has not been a model to study the effect of distributing MedKits on the expected number of deaths in an attack. We develop a discrete-time compartmental difference equation model to analyze the policy. The results show that distributing any number of MedKits reduces the number of deaths expected in all scenarios tested. We analyze under what circumstances the MedKits have the largest life-saving impact. We also develop a stochastic transition model to demonstrate the accuracy of the MedKits model results.