Table 1

Contrasting quantitative microbial risk-assessment models and infectious disease-transmission models.

Modeling aspects

Quantitative microbial risk-assessment model

Dynamic transmission model


Non-linear dynamics

Usually no

Usually yes


Environmental sources

Yes

Usually no


Inclusion of uncertainty/stochasticity

Yes

Case-by-case basis (deterministic dynamical systems, stochastic, hybrid models)


Time scale

Days

Weeks to months


Population size

Thousands (music festival) to millions (Hajj pilgrimage)

Hundred thousands to millions


Population density

High

Low to high


Model structure

Spatial-temporal network (Summer Olympics); confined space (Army barracks)

Age-structured, random-mixing populations; patch models; household-level models; large-scale individual-level models


Stochastic disease extinction

Yes

Unlikely


Endemicity

No

Yes


Contribution of super-spreading events

High

Low to moderate


Chowell et al. BMC Medicine 2012 10:159   doi:10.1186/1741-7015-10-159

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