Effects of confinement and vaccination on an epidemic outburst: A statistical mechanics approach Articles uri icon

publication date

  • September 2021

start page

  • 034310-1

end page

  • 034310-11


  • 3


  • 104


  • This work describes a simple agent model for the spread of an epidemic outburst, with special emphasis on mobility and geographical considerations, which we characterize via statistical mechanics and numerical simulations. As the mobility is decreased, a percolation phase transition is found separating a free-propagation phase in which the outburst spreads without finding spatial barriers and a localized phase in which the outburst dies off. Interestingly, the number of infected agents is subject to maximal fluctuations at the transition point, building upon the unpredictability of the evolution of an epidemic outburst. Our model also lends itself to testing vaccination schedules. Indeed, it has been suggested that if a vaccine is available but scarce it is convenient to carefully select the vaccination program to maximize the chances of halting the outburst. We discuss and evaluate several schemes, with special interest on how the percolation transition point can be shifted, allowing for higher mobility without epidemiological impact.


  • Physics
  • Statistics