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Reviewing the Reproduction Number R in Covid-19 Models

Amoretti, Maria Cristina and Lalumera, Elisabetta (2022) Reviewing the Reproduction Number R in Covid-19 Models. Philosophy of Medicine, 3 (1). pp. 1-16. ISSN 2692-3963

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Most of the epidemiological models of the Covid-19 pandemic contain the reproduction number (R) as a parameter. In this article we focus on some shortcomings regarding its role in driving health policies and political decisions. First, we summarize what R is and what it is used for. Second, we introduce a three-question matrix for the evaluation of any construct or parameter within a model. We then review the main literature about R to highlight some of its shortcomings and apply to them our three-question matrix. Finally, we argue that these shortcomings are important for an epistemic and political evaluation of R.

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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Amoretti, Maria Cristinacristina.amoretti@unige.it0000-0003-2892-577X
Lalumera, Elisabettaelisabetta.lalumera@unibo.it0000-0002-0345-0838
Keywords: Epidemiological models Covid-19 Reproduction number
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Medicine > Epidemiology
Depositing User: Professor Alex Broadbent
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2022 19:13
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2022 19:13
Item ID: 21208
Journal or Publication Title: Philosophy of Medicine
Publisher: University Library System, University of Pittsburgh
Official URL:
DOI or Unique Handle:
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Medicine > Epidemiology
Date: 27 April 2022
Page Range: pp. 1-16
Volume: 3
Number: 1
ISSN: 2692-3963

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