Recently posted articles
COVID-19 roadmap to recovery
Published in the Australian Financial Review, Dr Brian McNamee AO (writing in his personal capacity) and Sam Lovick question whether Premier Andrews’ roadmap to recovery is the right path. We conclude that Daniel Andrews should move to reduce lock down measures in regional Victoria immediately and should move to do so more quickly in Melbourne. The costs of lockdown, not just economic costs but also unfortunate health costs such as increased cancer deaths, dictate that we should transition from an elimination strategy to a management strategy. To do so, Victoria must ensure that it has state of the art testing and track and trace.
The challenges of compensating generators directed to provide system strength services
AEMO appointed Sam Lovick Consulting as the independent expert to determine compensation for some directions to provide system strength services in South Australia. The report highlights some of the shortcomings in the National Electricity Rules for determining compensation when AEMO has to issue directions for system strength, leaving some generators with little or no return even though they provide services to the market that are immensely valuable.
Suppression or elimination?
In a recent article published in the Financial Review, Sam Lovick reiterates that suppression is the best way to balance the health and economic costs of the COVID-19 pandemic. But fearful governments find themselves choosing an elimination strategy anyway.
COVID-19 Will there be a second wave in Australia?
In a recent article published in the Financial Review, Sam Lovick reviews whether there will be a second wave in Australia. He concludes not as Australia will strive to keep infections low by keeping its borders low. He sets out his concern that this will be much more costly than recent analysis by the OECD suggests given the importance to the economy of foreign tourism and foreign students.
COVID-19. Where to from here?
In a recent article published in the Financial Review, Sam Lovick reviews whether the costs and benefits of Australia’s current approach to the COVID-19 pandemic stack up. This longer paper provides more information on the disease modelling. Australia’s social distancing measures appear to have been successful in slowing the rate of increase in COVID-19 infections. The Government has released some modelling which shows what they are trying to achieve with their pandemic management policy. Our modelling shows that severe and near-universal social distancing with school and work closures is not be the most effective approach to pandemic management. More targeted measures focused on at-risk cohorts and infected households, if strictly implemented with community support, could deliver better outcomes at lower cost. Phasing some of these measures out quickly also looks to be a sensible policy step.
A managed spread of COVID-19 may be best
In a recent article published in the Financial Review, Sam Lovick reviews whether the costs and benefits of Australia’s current approach to the COVID-19 pandemic stack up. Based on our modelling, which links dynamic disease modelling and broader economic modelling, we conclude that there are alternative modes of intervention that would have a much lower cost per life saved than continuing with the aggressive social distancing measures that are currently in place.
Managing the economics of COVID-19
In a recent article published in the Financial Review, Sam Lovick estimates how much Australia is likely to spend for each life saves under the current COVID-19 interventions. He arrives at the somewhat alarming figure of $6m, much more that we are typically willing to spend to prevent an avoidable deaths.
The health benefits of early pandemic intervention with a partially matched pre-pandemic vaccine
Sam Lovick Consulting presented the following at the 7th International Conference on Infectious Disease Dynamics. It addresses the health benefits that could arise in the US from a vaccine available at pandemic onset which is not precisely matched to the circulating strain. The modelled vaccine is sufficiently closely matched to provide some level, albeit a lower level, of protection against infection.
Influenza vaccine: good for you, good for your economy
Australia has just gone through, and the northern hemisphere are in throws of, one of the most severe influenza seasons for some years. One of the reasons is that one of the flu strains in circulation, A(H3N2), is particularly virulent. These events are costly. They burden the health system from the GP office to intensive care. On top of the costs of treatment and care, there are the indirect costs of absenteeism; due to illness, for prophylactic reasons, or to care for one’s relatives. But there is an influenza vaccine. Perhaps if more people were vaccinated, we would do better?
Running R clusters on an AMD Threadripper 3990X in Windows 11 (update)In November 2020, I wrote a post on using all cores and threads on the latest Threadripper 64 core processors under Windows […]
Vaccine hesitancy is an economic and health disasterIn his latest opinion piece for the Australian Financial Review, Sam Lovick places some of the blame for COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in […]
Are reduced adverse events worth the costs of delays in achieving COVID-19 herd immunity?In the Australian Financial Review, 13th April 2021, Sam Lovick asks whether possible delays in COVID-19 vaccination resulting from restricted use of […]
Early use of a partially-matched influenza vaccine alongside social distancing reduces hospital utilisation and mortalityIn a simulation study using a dynamic disease model for the UK, Sam Lovick Consulting with colleagues, Van Hung Nguyen and Allen […]
Running R clusters on an AMD Threadripper 3990X in Windows 10As some of you may know, I have been modelling the COVID-19 pandemic in a number of countries using a compartmental disease […]