AMIA Annual Symposium 2021
Conference paper

A Framework for Inferring Epidemiological Model Parameters using Bayesian Non-Parametrics

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The use of epidemiological models for decision-making has been prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our work presents the application of nonparametric Bayesian techniques for inferring epidemiological model parameters based on available data sets published during the pandemic, towards enabling predictions under uncertainty during emerging pandemics. We present a methodology and framework that allows epidemiological model drivers to be integrated as input into the model calibration process. We demonstrate our methodology using the stringency index and mobility data for COVID-19 on an SEIRD compartmental model for selected US states. Our results directly compare the use of Bayesian nonparametrics for model predictions based on best parameter estimates with results of inference of parameter values across the US states. The proposed methodology provides a framework for What-If analysis and sequential decision-making methods for disease intervention planning and is demonstrated for COVID-19, while also applicable to other infectious disease models.