Computational models have been successfully applied to a wide variety of research areas including infectious disease epidemiology. Especially for questions that are difficult to examine in other ways, computational models have been used to extend the range of epidemiological issues that can be addressed, advance theoretical understanding of disease processes and help identify specific intervention strategies. We explore each of these contributions to epidemiology research through discussion and examples. We also describe in detail models for raccoon rabies and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, drawn from our own research, to further illustrate the role of computation in epidemiological modeling.
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Vol. 45 • No. 5