EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Voluntary and Mandatory Social Distancing: Evidence on COVID-19 Exposure Rates from Chinese Provinces and Selected Countries

Alexander Chudik, M Pesaran () and Alessandro Rebucci ()

No 14646, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: This paper considers a modification of the standard Susceptible-Infected-Recovered (SIR) model of epidemic that allows for different degrees of compulsory as well as voluntary social distancing. It is shown that the fraction of population that self-isolates varies with the perceived probability of contracting the disease. Implications of social distancing both on the epidemic and recession curves are investigated and their trade off is simulated under a number of different social distancing and economic participation scenarios. We show that mandating social distancing is very effective at flattening the epidemic curve, but is costly in terms of employment loss. However, if targeted towards individuals most likely to spread the infection, the employment loss can be somewhat reduced. We also show that voluntary self-isolation driven by individual's perceived risk of becoming infected kicks in only towards the peak of the epidemic and has little or no impact on flattening the epidemic curve. Using available statistics and correcting for measurement errors, we estimate the rate of exposure to COVID-19 for 21 Chinese provinces and a selected number of countries. The exposure rates are generally small, but vary considerably between Hubei and other Chinese provinces as well as across countries. Strikingly, the exposure rate in Hubei province is around 40 times larger than the rates for other Chinese provinces, with the exposure rates for some European countries being 3-5 times larger than Hubei (the epicenter of the epidemic). The paper also provides country-specific estimates of the recovery rate, showing it to be about 21 days (a week longer than the 14 days typically assumed), and relatively homogeneous across Chinese provinces and for a selected number of countries.

Keywords: COVID-19; employment loss; Epidemics; exposed population; Measurement error; self-isolation; SIR model; social distancing (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C4 D0 E7 F6 I12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020-04
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (19) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=14646 (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

Related works:
Working Paper: Voluntary and Mandatory Social Distancing: Evidence on Covid-19 Exposure Rates from Chinese Provinces and Selected Countries (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: Voluntary and Mandatory Social Distancing: Evidence on COVID-19 Exposure Rates from Chinese Provinces and Selected Countries (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: Voluntary and Mandatory Social Distancing: Evidence on COVID-19 Exposure Rates from Chinese Provinces and Selected Countries (2020) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14646

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=14646

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

 
Page updated 2021-09-16
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14646