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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/16111

Title: The Impact of Illness on Social Networks: Implications for Transmission and Control of Influenza
HENS, Niel
Edmunds, W. John
Eames, Ken T. D.
Issue Date: 2013
Citation: AMERICAN JOURNAL OF EPIDEMIOLOGY, 178 (11), p. 1655-1662
Abstract: We expect social networks to change as a result of illness, but social contact data are generally collected from healthy persons. Here we quantified the impact of influenza-like illness on social mixing patterns. We analyzed the contact patterns of persons from England measured when they were symptomatic with influenza-like illness during the 2009 A/H1N1pdm influenza epidemic (20092010) and again 2 weeks later when they had recovered. Illness was associated with a reduction in the number of social contacts, particularly in settings outside the home, reducing the reproduction number to about one-quarter of the value it would otherwise have taken. We also observed a change in the age distribution of contacts. By comparing the expected age distribution of cases resulting from transmission by (a)symptomatic persons with incidence data, we estimated the contribution of both groups to transmission. Using this, we calculated the fraction of transmission resulting from (a)symptomatic persons, assuming equal duration of infectiousness. We estimated that 66 of transmission was attributable to persons with symptomatic disease (95 confidence interval: 0.23, 1.00). This has important implications for control: Treating symptomatic persons with antiviral agents or encouraging home isolation would be expected to have a major impact on transmission, particularly since the reproduction number for this strain was low.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/16111
DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwt196
ISI #: 000327717600008
ISSN: 0002-9262
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validation: ecoom, 2014
Appears in Collections: Research publications

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