Following the earthquake of January 2010 in Haiti the first cholera outbreak in almost a century was announced in October of that year.
To date, over 470,000 cases of cholera have been reported in Haiti with 6,631 attributable deaths.
This marks the worst cholera outbreak in recent history, as well as the best documented cholera outbreak in modern public health.
Using mathematical modelling as a tool to complement statistical analysis and field epidemiology will enable us to understand the progression of this infectious disease. It also provides information about a specific disease to show
the projected outcome of an epidemic, control the spread of disease, and reduce disease related costs.
My research partner Olivia and I will attempt to use SIR models to find the optimum intervention strategies.Throughout my summer in DIMACS I hope to gain a better knowledge on
the theory and simulation of mathematical models.
- Week 1:
- On my first day at Rutgers, I was greeted by Matt and Becky who extended a very warm welcome. It was fun getting to know other the students from other institutions and even Prague as well.
We gave our first presentation on, "Mathematical Modeling on Disease Transmission for Cholera."
- Week 2:
- I gained more background knowledge on the transmission models and different parameters and terms that previous researchers have used.
Friday was quite fun because it was Culture day! I got to learnt alot about the Deaf Culture. Also the other students talked about many interesting things about their country and heritage.
- Week 3:
- I practiced the linearization techniques and the Jacobian Matrix in order to find the equilibrium. I also met with my mentor and was given a more complex model to work on.
We had a Speaker that gave a tutorial on "Crowd Dynamics" that was somewhat related to our field; it uses mathematical models too. Its amazing how a plethora of humans react to their surroundings. This made me very aware whenever I'm taking the train or exiting an elevator.
- Week 4:
- My partner and I were able to calculate the model's reproductive number "R0." On Thursday I heard the talk on Connection Games and Spenner's Lemma which could be applied to certain types of connection games. The Speaker introduced the Hex game and others as well.
- Week 5:
- My mentor adviced that I work on a simpler SIR model to fully understand how to calculate the disease-free and endemic equilibrium (I was having alot of issues with it). More reading and completing this exercise made me understand the concept better.
- Week 6:
- I worked once again on my mentor's model and made a stability analysis. On Friday we had a second presentation. We shared our results and the work we did throughout our summer.
- Week 7:
- I used the next generation method to find the reproductive number R0. I started working on my report.
On Thursday we had Gene's Farewell party which was great!! Some of the staff shared their memories and funny stories of him (We had a good laugh).
- Week 8:
- We finished and submitted our report. This was our last week at DIMACS. I will definitely miss everyone, it made my summer!! : )