Expected Evolution of COVID-19 Epidemic in France for Several Combinations of Vaccination Strategies and Barrier Measures

Vaccines (Basel). 2021 Dec 10;9(12):1462. doi: 10.3390/vaccines9121462.


The outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, enhanced by rapid spreads of variants, has caused a major international health crisis, with serious public health and economic consequences. An agent-based model was designed to simulate the evolution of the epidemic in France over 2021 and the first six months of 2022. The study compares the efficiencies of four theoretical vaccination campaigns (over 6, 9, 12, and 18 months), combined with various non-pharmaceutical interventions. In France, with the emergence of the Alpha variant, without vaccination and despite strict barrier measures, more than 600,000 deaths would be observed. An efficient vaccination campaign (i.e., total coverage of the French population) over six months would divide the death toll by 10. A vaccination campaign of 12, instead of 6, months would slightly increase the disease-related mortality (+6%) but require a 77% increase in ICU bed-days. A campaign over 18 months would increase the disease-related mortality by 17% and require a 244% increase in ICU bed-days. Thus, it seems mandatory to vaccinate the highest possible percentage of the population within 12, or better yet, 9 months. The race against the epidemic and virus variants is really a matter of vaccination strategy.

Keywords: COVID-19; agent-based model; decision support techniques; vaccination.