Prediction of covid-19 transmission in the united states using google search trends

Meshrif Alruily, Mohamed Ezz, Ayman Mohamed Mostafa, Nacim Yanes, Mostafa Abbas, Yasser El-Manzalawy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Accurate forecasting of emerging infectious diseases can guide public health officials inmaking appropriate decisions related to the allocation of public health resources. Due to the exponential spread of the COVID- 19 infection worldwide, several computational models for forecasting the transmission and mortality rates of COVID-19 have been proposed in the literature. To accelerate scientific and public health insights into the spread and impact of COVID-19, Google released the Google COVID-19 search trends symptoms open-access dataset. Our objective is to develop 7 and 14-day-ahead forecasting models of COVID-19 transmission and mortality in the US using the Google search trends for COVID-19 related symptoms. Specifically,we propose a stacked long short-termmemory (SLSTM) architecture for predicting COVID-19 confirmed and death cases using historical time series data combined with auxiliary time series data from theGoogle COVID- 19 search trends symptoms dataset. Considering the SLSTM networks trained using historical data only as the base models, our base models for 7 and 14- day-ahead forecasting of COVID cases had the mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) values of 6.6% and 8.8%, respectively. On the other side, our proposed models had improvedMAPE values of 3.2% and 5.6%, respectively. For 7 and 14 -day-ahead forecasting of COVID-19 deaths, the MAPE values of the base models were 4.8% and 11.4%, while the improved MAPE values of our proposed models were 4.7% and 7.8%, respectively. We found that the Google search trends for "pneumonia," "shortness of breath," and "fever" are the most informative search trends for predicting COVID-19 transmission. We also found that the search trends for "hypoxia" and "fever"were the most informative trends for forecasting COVID-19 mortality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1751-1768
Number of pages18
JournalComputers, Materials and Continua
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomaterials
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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