Our analysis, which began as a request from the Oklahoma Governor for useable analysis for state decision making, seeks to predict statewide COVID‐19 spread through a variety of lenses, including with and without long‐term care facilities (LTCFs), accounting for rural/urban differences, and considering the impact of state government regulations of the citizenry on disease spread.
We utilize a deterministic susceptible exposed infectious resistant (SEIR) model designed to fit observed fatalities, hospitalizations, and ICU beds for the state of Oklahoma with a particular focus on the role of the rural/urban nature of the state and the impact that COVID‐19 cases in LTCFs played in the outbreak.
The model provides a reasonable fit for the observed data on new cases, deaths, and hospitalizations. Moreover, removing LTCF cases from the analysis sharpens the analysis of the population in general, showing a more gradual increase in cases at the start of the pandemic and a steeper increase when the second surge occurred.
We anticipate that this procedure could be helpful to policymakers in other states or municipalities now and in the future.