SHINE Case Study: COVID-19 Policy Options

Project Details

SHINE has made a leading contribution to COVID-19 policy making.

In collaboration with colleagues at the University of Melbourne’s Transport Health and Urban Design Research Lab (THUD) , we developed an agent-based model for quantifying the impact of policy options like elimination , suppression and mask wearing. This model was successfully used to underpin the Victorian Government’s Roadmap out of lockdown in 2020.

SHINE then linked the agent-based model (as a ‘special’ example of an intervention model) to our PMSLT model to estimate the health gains and costs (including GDP costs) of various policy response options, including:

  • for elimination and suppression strategies in Victoria in 2020 as published in JAMA Health Forum
  • for varying speeds of vaccine program roll out in Pakistan and Armenia for the Asia Development Bank.

COVID-19 Pandemic Tradeoffs is the ongoing platform of modelling.  100s of scenarios are modelled of how infection rates, hospitalisation and death rate, and – critically – time in lockdown vary by policy scenarios (vaccination coverage, border policies impacting the number of vaccinated but infected arrivals per day, and in-country suppression policies). The latest iteration of this modelling is summarized in the 2022 Will Be Better report.

We initiated the Australian COVID-19 Modelling Initiative that showcases outputs from many COVID-19 modelling groups in Australia.

As 2022 approaches, modelling of COVID-19 policy options continues to be important. Our Pandemic Tradeoffs modelling is ideally suited to examining:

  • optimal booster programs
  • optimal border policies
  • optimal use of innovations such as mass rapid antigen testing.

We are ‘open for business’ for clients who want modelling of scenarios; contact us at with queries.

Research Outcomes

Research Publications

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

MDHS Research library
Explore by researcher, school, project or topic.