Background: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is currently a global public health threat. Outside of China, Italy is one of the countries suffering the most with the COVID-19 epidemic. It is important to predict the epidemic trend of the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy to help develop public health strategies. Methods: We used time-series data of COVID-19 from Jan 22 2020 to Apr 02 2020. An infectious disease dynamic extended susceptible-infected-removed (eSIR) model, which covers the effects of different intervention measures in dissimilar periods, was applied to estimate the epidemic trend in Italy. The basic reproductive number was estimated using Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods and presented using the resulting posterior mean and 95% credible interval (CI). Hunan, with a similar total population number to Italy, was used as a comparative item. Results: In the eSIR model, we estimated that the mean of basic reproductive number for COVID-19 was 4.34 (95% CI, 3.04-6.00) in Italy and 3.16 (95% CI, 1.73-5.25) in Hunan. There would be a total of 182 051 infected cases (95%CI:116 114-274 378) under the current country blockade and the endpoint would be Aug 05 in Italy. Conclusion: Italy's current strict measures can efficaciously prevent the further spread of COVID-19 and should be maintained. Necessary strict public health measures should be implemented as soon as possible in other European countries with a high number of COVID-19 cases. The most effective strategy needs to be confirmed in further studies.
Keywords: COVID-19; Italy; coronavirus; epidemics trend; prediction.
Copyright © 2020 Wangping, Ke, Yang, Wenzhe, Shengshu, Shanshan, Jianwei, Fuyin, Penggang, Jing, Miao and Yao.
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