Título: Estimating a stochastic epidemic frontier model that controls for undocumented COVID-19 cases with an application to Spain

Ponente: Luis Orea (Universidad de Oviedo)

Organizador: Juan Aparicio

Date: Martes 22 de junio de 2021 a las 12:00 horas.

Lugar:  Online.

Abstract: We use a stochastic frontier analysis (SFA) approach to model the propagation of the COVID-19 epidemic across geographical areas. The proposed models permit reported and undocumented cases to be estimated, which is important as case counts are overwhelmingly believed to be undercounted. The models can be estimated using only epidemic-type data but are flexible enough to permit these reporting rates to vary across geographical cross-section units of observation. We provide an empirical application of our models to Spanish data corresponding to the initial months of the original outbreak of the virus in early 2019. We find remarkable rates of under-reporting that might explain why the Spanish Government took its time to implement strict mitigation strategies. We also provide insights into the effectiveness of the national and regional lockdown measures and the influence of socio-economic factors in the propagation of the virus.