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1.
Front Pediatr ; 9: 700656, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526783

ABSTRACT

Ongoing monitoring of COVID-19 disease burden in children will help inform mitigation strategies and guide pediatric vaccination programs. Leveraging a national, comprehensive dataset, we sought to quantify and compare disease burden and trends in hospitalizations for children and adults in the US.

2.
BMC Infect Dis ; 21(1): 712, 2021 Jul 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1394421

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has severely disrupted supply chains for many types of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), particularly surgical N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs; "masks"). As a consequence, an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA has allowed use of industrial N95 respirators and importation of N95-type masks manufactured to international standards; these include KN95 masks from China and FFP2 masks from the European Union. METHODS: We conducted a survey of masks in the inventory of major academic medical centers in Boston, MA to determine provenance and manufacturer or supplier. We then assembled a testing apparatus at a university laboratory and performed a modified test of filtration performance using KCl and ambient particulate matter on masks from hospital inventories; an accompanying website shows how to build and use the testing apparatus. RESULTS: Over 100 different makes and models of traditional and nontraditional filtering facepiece respirators (N95-type masks) were in the inventory of surveyed U.S. teaching hospitals as opposed to 2-5 models under normal circumstances. A substantial number of unfamiliar masks are from unknown manufacturers. Many are not correctly labelled and do not perform to accepted standards and a subset are obviously dangerous; many of these masks are likely to be counterfeit. Due to the absence of publicly available information on mask suppliers and inconsistent labeling of KN95 masks, it is difficult to distinguish between legitimate and counterfeit products. CONCLUSIONS: Many FFRs available for procurement during the COVID-19 pandemic do not provide levels of fit and filtration similar to those of N95 masks and are not acceptable for use in healthcare settings. Based on these results, and in consultation with occupational health officers, we make six recommendations to assist end users in acquiring legitimate products. Institutions should always assess masks from non-traditional supply chains by checking their markings and manufacturer information against data provided by NIOSH and the latest FDA EUA Appendix A. In the absence of verifiable information on the legitimacy of mask source, institutions should consider measuring mask fit and filtration directly. We also make suggestions for regulatory agencies regarding labeling and public disclosure aimed at increasing pandemic resilience.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Exposure , Respiratory Protective Devices , Humans , Masks , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Ventilators, Mechanical
3.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(6): e2112596, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1265355

ABSTRACT

Importance: Additional sources of pediatric epidemiological and clinical data are needed to efficiently study COVID-19 in children and youth and inform infection prevention and clinical treatment of pediatric patients. Objective: To describe international hospitalization trends and key epidemiological and clinical features of children and youth with COVID-19. Design, Setting, and Participants: This retrospective cohort study included pediatric patients hospitalized between February 2 and October 10, 2020. Patient-level electronic health record (EHR) data were collected across 27 hospitals in France, Germany, Spain, Singapore, the UK, and the US. Patients younger than 21 years who tested positive for COVID-19 and were hospitalized at an institution participating in the Consortium for Clinical Characterization of COVID-19 by EHR were included in the study. Main Outcomes and Measures: Patient characteristics, clinical features, and medication use. Results: There were 347 males (52%; 95% CI, 48.5-55.3) and 324 females (48%; 95% CI, 44.4-51.3) in this study's cohort. There was a bimodal age distribution, with the greatest proportion of patients in the 0- to 2-year (199 patients [30%]) and 12- to 17-year (170 patients [25%]) age range. Trends in hospitalizations for 671 children and youth found discrete surges with variable timing across 6 countries. Data from this cohort mirrored national-level pediatric hospitalization trends for most countries with available data, with peaks in hospitalizations during the initial spring surge occurring within 23 days in the national-level and 4CE data. A total of 27 364 laboratory values for 16 laboratory tests were analyzed, with mean values indicating elevations in markers of inflammation (C-reactive protein, 83 mg/L; 95% CI, 53-112 mg/L; ferritin, 417 ng/mL; 95% CI, 228-607 ng/mL; and procalcitonin, 1.45 ng/mL; 95% CI, 0.13-2.77 ng/mL). Abnormalities in coagulation were also evident (D-dimer, 0.78 ug/mL; 95% CI, 0.35-1.21 ug/mL; and fibrinogen, 477 mg/dL; 95% CI, 385-569 mg/dL). Cardiac troponin, when checked (n = 59), was elevated (0.032 ng/mL; 95% CI, 0.000-0.080 ng/mL). Common complications included cardiac arrhythmias (15.0%; 95% CI, 8.1%-21.7%), viral pneumonia (13.3%; 95% CI, 6.5%-20.1%), and respiratory failure (10.5%; 95% CI, 5.8%-15.3%). Few children were treated with COVID-19-directed medications. Conclusions and Relevance: This study of EHRs of children and youth hospitalized for COVID-19 in 6 countries demonstrated variability in hospitalization trends across countries and identified common complications and laboratory abnormalities in children and youth with COVID-19 infection. Large-scale informatics-based approaches to integrate and analyze data across health care systems complement methods of disease surveillance and advance understanding of epidemiological and clinical features associated with COVID-19 in children and youth.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Electronic Health Records/statistics & numerical data , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Adolescent , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Global Health , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Retrospective Studies
4.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 2051, 2021 01 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1041626

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to widespread shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers, including of N95 masks (filtering facepiece respirators; FFRs). These masks are intended for single use but their sterilization and subsequent reuse has the potential to substantially mitigate shortages. Here we investigate PPE sterilization using ionized hydrogen peroxide (iHP), generated by SteraMist equipment (TOMI; Frederick, MD), in a sealed environment chamber. The efficacy of sterilization by iHP was assessed using bacterial spores in biological indicator assemblies. After one or more iHP treatments, five models of N95 masks from three manufacturers were assessed for retention of function based on their ability to form an airtight seal (measured using a quantitative fit test) and filter aerosolized particles. Filtration testing was performed at a university lab and at a National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) pre-certification laboratory. The data demonstrate that N95 masks sterilized using SteraMist iHP technology retain filtration efficiency up to ten cycles, the maximum number tested to date. A typical iHP environment chamber with a volume of ~ 80 m3 can treat ~ 7000 masks and other items (e.g. other PPE, iPADs), making this an effective approach for a busy medical center.


Subject(s)
Hydrogen Peroxide/pharmacology , N95 Respirators/virology , Personal Protective Equipment/virology , Sterilization/methods , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Equipment Reuse/statistics & numerical data , Humans , N95 Respirators/supply & distribution , Pandemics/prevention & control , Personal Protective Equipment/supply & distribution , Respiratory Protective Devices , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , United States/epidemiology
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