University of Sussex
2 files

A hospital demand and capacity intervention approach for COVID-19

Download all (4.3 MB)
journal contribution
posted on 2023-06-10, 06:59 authored by James Van YperenJames Van Yperen, Eduard Campillo-Funollet, Rebecca Inkpen, Anjum Memon, Anotida Madzvamuse
The mathematical interpretation of interventions for the mitigation of epidemics in the literature often involves finding the optimal time to initiate an intervention and/or the use of the number of infections to manage impact. Whilst these methods may work in theory, in order to implement effectively they may require information which is not likely to be available in the midst of an epidemic, or they may require impeccable data about infection levels in the community. In reality, testing and cases data can only be as good as the policy of implementation and the compliance of the individuals, which implies that accurately estimating the levels of infections becomes difficult or complicated from the data that is provided. In this paper, we demonstrate a different approach to the mathematical modelling of interventions, not based on optimality or cases, but based on demand and capacity of hospitals who have to deal with the epidemic on a day to day basis. In particular, we use data-driven modelling to calibrate a susceptible-exposed-infectious-recovered-died type model to infer parameters that depict the dynamics of the epidemic in several regions of the UK. We use the calibrated parameters for forecasting scenarios and understand, given a maximum capacity of hospital healthcare services, how the timing of interventions, severity of interventions, and conditions for the releasing of interventions affect the overall epidemic-picture. We provide an optimisation method to capture when, in terms of healthcare demand, an intervention should be put into place given a maximum capacity on the service. By using an equivalent agent-based approach, we demonstrate uncertainty quantification on the likelihood that capacity is not breached, by how much if it does, and the limit on demand that almost guarantees capacity is not breached.


Publication status

  • Published

File Version

  • Published version


PLoS One




Public Library of Science (PLoS)





Page range


Department affiliated with

  • Mathematics Publications

Full text available

  • Yes

Peer reviewed?

  • Yes

Legacy Posted Date


First Open Access (FOA) Date


First Compliant Deposit (FCD) Date


Usage metrics

    University of Sussex (Publications)


    No categories selected