Nowcasting COVID-19 epidemics in Hong Kong and Beijing
Diverse patterns of COVID-19 epidemics have been observed in populations with varied social demographics, vaccination coverages, past waves of outbreaks, and public health and social measures (PHSMs) implemented in response. This seminar will discuss how nowcasting of the Omicron epidemics was enhanced from January to August 2022 in Hong Kong by integrating evolving data streams that gradually became available and implemented the model in the nowcasting of Beijing’s Omicron BF.7 epidemics in November 2022 to January 2023. The seminar will showcase that epidemic nowcasting is a useful tool if the model is parameterized with sufficient data. During the seminar, a framework will be presented which provides a way to integrate multiple streams of epidemiological data and knowledge for short-term assessment of the epidemic scale and disease burden.
Dr Kathy Leung, The University of Hong Kong
Kathy Leung received her PhD from the School of Public Health at The University of Hong Kong. In recent years, Kathy has been interested in mathematical modelling of a wide range of diseases such as influenza, RSV, MERS, COVID-19, hand-foot-and-mouth disease, HPV, cervical cancer, colorectal cancer, and breast cancer. She also conducts epidemiological and economic evaluations of disease intervention strategies, such as HMFD vaccination, public health and social measures against COVID-19, and risk-based breast cancer screening. Leveraging the latest development in data science, she also participates in the development of tools to tackle misinformation about COVID-19 and HPV vaccination with AI language models. Kathy is a member of HKU’s COVID-19 Response Team and has contributed to the earliest studies about COVID-19 epidemiology. She is also an investigator of Programme 1 of the Laboratory of Data Discovery for Health (D²4H) at the Hong Kong Science Park.