How to Interpret Covid-19 Predictions: Reassessing the IHME’s Model

Philosophy of Medicine 1 (2) (2021)
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Abstract

The IHME Covid-19 prediction model has been one of the most influential Covid models in the United States. Early on, it received heavy criticism for understating the extent of the epidemic. I argue that this criticism was based on a misunderstanding of the model. The model was best interpreted not as attempting to forecast the actual course of the epidemic. Rather, it was attempting to make a conditional projection: telling us how the epidemic would unfold, given certain assumptions. This misunderstanding of the IHME’s model prevented the public from seeing how dire the model’s projections actually were.

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S. Andrew Schroeder
Claremont McKenna College

Citations of this work

What are the COVID-19 models modeling (philosophically speaking)?Jonathan Fuller - 2021 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 43 (2):1-5.
Epidemics from the Population Perspective.Jonathan Fuller - 2022 - Philosophy of Science 89 (2):232-251.
Epidemiological models and COVID-19: a comparative view.Valeriano Iranzo & Saúl Pérez-González - 2021 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 43 (3):1-24.

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References found in this work

Model Evaluation: An Adequacy-for-Purpose View.Wendy S. Parker - 2020 - Philosophy of Science 87 (3):457-477.
How Many Have Died?S. Andrew Schroeder - 2020 - Issues in Science and Technology.

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