Viral Testing Protocols for U.S. Navy Ships
[Technical Report, Master's Thesis]
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
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The current best practices for minimizing the effects of COVID-19 are social distancing, the use of masks, the early detection of the virus among the population, and rapid quarantining of those who are infected. Early detection and rapid quarantining rely on testing, which is vital to the containment of the pandemic but also demands a large logistical effort in terms of testing sites, materials, labs, and staffing. This project develops tools to dynamically allocate these testing resources based on a model of the spread of COVID-19 on a Navy ship. Navy ships are highly compartmentalized environments and necessitate new models that relax the homogeneous-mixing assumption common to most epidemic models. We create a simulation model of the virus spread in the non-homogenous population, where people are spatially clustered into interconnected groups such as divisions or berthing on a Navy ship. The goal of this project is to develop testing protocols that minimize the impact of the virus to the ships operational capabilities. To do so, we create a simulation-optimization model, which focuses on detection, not mitigation and response.
- Medicine and Medical Research