- A Framework for Assessing Models of the COVID-19 Pandemic to Inform Policymaking in Virginia
Models have been widely used to inform policymakers about the implications of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the effects of policy responses to it. The authors of this report reviewed available models and the relevant literature to produce a framework for assessing a model‘s suitability for policymakers in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Virginia‘s government first announced the presence of a COVID-19 case on March 7, 2020. The first interventions were put in place with only a few dozen confirmed cases having been reported, and Virginia had just over 1,000 confirmed cases when the stay-at-home order was implemented. When assessing whether a model is suitable for informing policy, it is important to consider whether the data being used are relevant, whether the model design is appropriate, how the model has performed in the past, and the degree of transparency in the model. In this report, the authors examine assessment criteria for early-stage and late-stage models, taking into account the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on behavior, policy, health outcomes, and the economy.