Dr. Alemnesh Mirkuzie discusses the impact of the COVID-19 and other models on public health in Ethiopia.
Transcription: I would like to congratulate the team for their outstanding work to come up with COVID-19 modeling at a time when much was unknown about the disease and its impact. Infectious disease modeling was not a core activity at IHME. It is an impressive work the modeling team has done to develop COVID-19 model within short period. This is a witness that the system at IHME has a highly dynamic nature to address evolving needs, and so do the experts.
Coming to Ethiopia, the IHME COVID-19 modeling work has put its mark in two ways. Number one, on data to action. Here, the IHME COVID-19 modeling estimates have been used as an evidence base by the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health technical and high-level experts, including the health minister, to inform COVID-19 preparedness and response plan, highlighting possible outcomes of the pandemic in different scenarios and what should be done, like recommended actions. I would think the modeling estimates could also be used to inform COVID-19 plan in many other settings where strong evidence is lacking.
Number two, the National Data Management Center has followed similar path with IHME in developing its COVID-19 model. Taking COVID-19 challenge as an opportunity, our team started to work on infectious disease modeling. The technical experts from IHME modeling team were found instrumental to develop the model. To this end, I would like to thank Bobby for his unreserved inputs and Ally Walker for her facilitation to get us experts from IHME whenever needed.