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Increasing Lab Capacity for Covid-19 Viral Testing


  • Francesco Flaviano Russo

    (Università di Napoli Federico II and CSEF)


I study how to increase the capacity to test for Covid-19 with the two-swabs group testing strategy. It consists in bunching first swabs in groups and processing the second swabs individually only in case the group result is positive. Using a simulation, I derive multipliers of the lab capacity in worse case scenario that indicate how many more tests a lab can be sure to perform each day. The results show that the gains can be substantial even in case the actual fraction of positive tests is bigger than the expected fraction used to set the optimal group size.

Suggested Citation

  • Francesco Flaviano Russo, 2020. "Increasing Lab Capacity for Covid-19 Viral Testing," CSEF Working Papers 575, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:sef:csefwp:575

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    RePEc Biblio mentions

    As found on the RePEc Biblio, the curated bibliography for Economics:
    1. > Economics of Welfare > Health Economics > Economics of Pandemics > Specific pandemics > Covid-19 > Health > Testing

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    Group; Test;

    JEL classification:

    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • H12 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Crisis Management

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