Mathematical Modelling in Public Health

A mathematical model is a virtual experiment set up to test a hypothesis. It creates a controlled environment where complex relationships between biological, environmental, demographic and behavioural factors can be represented.

For public health, mathematical models can be used to test different “what if” scenarios and the results can help inform policy, programs and practice.

NCCID has released two new resources about modelling and public health. A new video, a partnership with NCCMT, introduces public health to modelling. As a companion piece, NCCID developed a case study of a Promising Practice of a collaboration between public health in Winnipeg and modelers in Toronto, to assess the benefits of new interventions to reduce syphilis infections in Winnipeg.

Behind the Curtain of Mathematical Modelling : Inside a collaborative modelling project on public health strategies for syphilis management

Case study on the application of mathematical modelling to assess the impact of a newly-designed intervention on the burden of syphilis in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Their story illustrates how mathematical modelling can provide timely evidence to guide decision-making by public health planners and practitioners throughout the implementation of a new intervention.

The lessons they share may help to demystify modelling and reveal the benefits of collaborations between modellers and public health personnel.


Use of Mathematical Modelling in Public Health Decision Making for Infectious Diseases

On October 6-7, 2014 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Pan-InfORM and NCCID co-hosted the fourth bi-annual Pan-InfORM meeting. The meeting objectives were to bring more clarity to (i) areas where modelling results are unclear; (ii) how modelling can best be used in informing policy and improving practice; and (iii) the value of sustaining and enhancing the application of modelling in public health.