This simple framework can be used by policymakers to assess whether countries should impose tougher measures to reduce the spread of covid-19 or consider relaxing them
Policymakers in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are grappling with the dilemma of whether to impose or release stringent measures to control the spread of covid-19. In high income countries, the reproductive number (R0) of the virus is used to guide these decisions. However, most LMICs do not have the robust healthcare systems and widespread testing capacity necessary to generate the reliable, representative data required to accurately determine R0. Many LMICs also have other complex factors that are often unique to each country, which may have important implications for these decisions.
Together, these factors make it extremely difficult for policymakers in LMICs to undertake objective evaluations and then make informed decisions whether to impose or release stringent control measures. Therefore, we have designed a decision support tool that can provide a framework for supporting evidence-based, context-specific decision-making on this matter.