Disease Modeller Talks ‘Dynamic’ Distancing With Toronto Star

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Prof. Amy Greer

Prof. Amy Greer, holder of the Canada Research Chair in Population Disease Modelling, spoke to the Toronto Star about recent research she co-authored that proposes cycling on and off physical distancing requirements.

The study found that imposing physical distancing restrictions when hospital intensive care units are at capacity and relaxing them when the pressure eases could help keep the health-care system from becoming overwhelmed while also allowing for psychological and economic respite.

She cautioned to the Star that knowing when to dial back the restrictions or when to strengthen them would be crucial — moving too slowly could risk overwhelming hospitals. Such a plan would also require intensive testing and contact tracing as well to spot outbreaks before they spread, she added.

Greer is a professor in the Department of Population Medicine in the Ontario Veterinary College at U of G.