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Nat Commun ; 13(1): 2494, 2022 05 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1890179


The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the fastest evolving pandemics in recent history. As such, the SARS-CoV-2 viral evolution needs to be continuously tracked. This study sequenced 1123 SARS-CoV-2 genomes from patient isolates (121 from arriving travellers and 1002 from communities) to track the molecular evolution and spatio-temporal dynamics of the SARS-CoV-2 variants in Ghana. The data show that initial local transmission was dominated by B.1.1 lineage, but the second wave was overwhelmingly driven by the Alpha variant. Subsequently, an unheralded variant under monitoring, B.1.1.318, dominated transmission from April to June 2021 before being displaced by Delta variants, which were introduced into community transmission in May 2021. Mutational analysis indicated that variants that took hold in Ghana harboured transmission enhancing and immune escape spike substitutions. The observed rapid viral evolution demonstrates the potential for emergence of novel variants with greater mutational fitness as observed in other parts of the world.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Genome, Viral/genetics , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Mutation , Pandemics , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
Inquiry ; 58: 469580211067479, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1598486


To assess the prevalence and factors associated with psychological distress (PD) and Medical Laboratory Professionals (MLPs) involvement in COVID-19-related duties. This study adopted an online cross-sectional, nationally stratified survey among 473 MLPs using Google Form with a designated link; Depression, anxiety, and stress scale-21 (DASS-21) was used to measure depression, anxiety, and stress (secondary outcome). We employed generalized Negative Binomial (NBR) and Poisson regression analytical approach to our study outcomes. All analyses were performed using Stata 16, and P-value≤.05 deemed significant. The overall DASS-21 score ranged from asymptomatic psychological distress to severe symptomatic PD. The prevalence of depression, anxiety, and stress were 9.1 [95%CI=6.8-12.0], 17.8 [95%CI=14.6-21.5], and 7.5 [95%CI=5.4-10.1], respectively. The result evinced a high and significant association; the univariate NBR predicted a significant increase of PD score by 12% and 18% among participants who were involved in one and two or more COVID-19-related duties, respectively, (ß[95%CI] = .12 [.05-.18] and .18 [.10-.26], respectively). A binary outcome predicted approximately 2-folds of overall psychological distress among participants involved in two or more COVID-19-related duties compared with non-involvement (adjusted Prevalence Ratio [95%CI]= 2.34 [1.12-4.85]). For depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms, both univariate and multivariate data analyses evinced a higher disadvantage among MLP involved in COVID-19-related duties. We observed a high tendency of experiencing significant psychological distress amongst MLP involved in COVID-19-related duties. Experience of psychological distress increased with deeper involvement in COVID-19-related activities. Psychological support should be extended to MLPs to limit the effect of these negative emotions on their cognitive and social behavior as well as job performance.

COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/epidemiology , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Laboratories , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires