Modelling the potential impact of limited hospital beds on Ebola virus disease dynamics

Sylvie Diane Djiomba Njankou, Farai Nyabadza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


During the 2013-2015 Ebola virus disease outbreak, admission into a health facility depended on the availability of hospital beds and health personnel. The limited number of such important logistics contributed to the escalation of the epidemic. We use a compartmental model to study the dynamics of Ebola virus disease when there is a limited number of beds for patients. We use a non-linear hospitalisation rate and formulate the rate at which the time-dependent number of available beds evolves. The model shows a backward bifurcation. Simulation results show that bed supply in Ebola treatment units contribute to the reduction of the number of individuals infected by Ebola virus. The model fitting results suggest that a timely supply of sufficient beds to Ebola treatment units limits the spread of the disease. Despite the fact that bed supplies to Ebola treatment units are not in themselves a control measure, they contribute to the reduction of the disease spread, by keeping the infectious in one place, during their infectious period.These results have important implications to the management and control of the disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8528-8544
Number of pages17
JournalMathematical Methods in the Applied Sciences
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Ebola treatment units
  • backward bifurcation
  • curve fitting
  • hospital beds
  • stability analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Mathematics
  • General Engineering


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