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How many COVID-19 PCR positive individuals do weexpect to see on the Diamond Princess cruise ship?

By Jing Qin, Fang Chen, Huijuan Ma, Yukun Liu, Dean Follmann, Yong Zhou

Posted 16 Nov 2020
medRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.11.14.20230938

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has become a global epidemic crisis with tens of thousands confirmed cases surfacing everyday. The infection rates in households, offices and public places are quite different from those in encompassed spaces such as airplanes, trains and cruise ships. Studying the behavior of COVID-19 in confined spaces like Diamond Princess cruise is of great importance to understand the disease progression and to manage the epidemic. We propose a novel mixture model to estimate the infection distribution and total infected number after 14 days of quarantine based on PCR test data performed on the Diamond Princess cruise. ResultsIn contrast to the officially reported 634 individuals with PCR-positive results after the 14 day quarantine, which as of April 27, 2020 had increased to 712, we conclude that this number should be at least 1000. The discrepancy might be caused by the false-negative result of the PCR test or the occurrence of infection after the test.

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