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1.
BMJ Open ; 12(6): e063691, 2022 06 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1902024

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Many family caregivers experience significant burdens, especially those who take care of patients with chronic organ failure. Although the social welfare system offers some material assistance, a more sustainable approach to supporting caregivers is warranted. This study aims to explore the social capital (ie, the internal strengths of a community that facilitate different social roles) available for these family caregivers. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: A participatory design based on Trochim's concept mapping framework will be used in this study. A total of 119 participants, including patients, family caregivers, professionals and other community members, will be recruited from the community. The study will be divided into three phases. In Phase I, qualitative methods will be used to prepare and generate statements. Participants will be asked to share their views on social capital for family caregivers through interviews. In Phase II, quantitative methods will be used to arrange these statements into a concept map, and participants will be asked to complete a questionnaire to prioritise the statements. Statistical methods will be used to create a map based on the responses. In Phase III, the concept map will be used to formulate action plans. The findings will be presented to the public to produce recommendations for social policy. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: This study was approved by The Chinese University of Hong Kong Survey and Behavioural Research Ethics Committee (Reference No.: SBRE-20-714). Informed consent will be obtained from all participants. This study will reveal which forms of social capital can be mobilised to support family caregivers of patients with chronic organ failure. Recommendations on policies to improve the caregiving experience, strengthen social capital and enhance social care will be produced. Findings will be disseminated through academic conferences and journals, as well as local media to create a greater social impact. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ChiCTR2100044171.


Subject(s)
Caregivers , Social Capital , Humans , Social Support , Surveys and Questionnaires
2.
Science ; 377(6603): eabq1841, 2022 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1891726

ABSTRACT

The Omicron, or Pango lineage B.1.1.529, variant of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) carries multiple spike mutations with high transmissibility and partial neutralizing antibody (nAb) escape. Vaccinated individuals show protection against severe disease, often attributed to primed cellular immunity. We investigated T and B cell immunity against B.1.1.529 in triple BioNTech BNT162b2 messenger RNA-vaccinated health care workers (HCWs) with different SARS-CoV-2 infection histories. B and T cell immunity against previous variants of concern was enhanced in triple-vaccinated individuals, but the magnitude of T and B cell responses against B.1.1.529 spike protein was reduced. Immune imprinting by infection with the earlier B.1.1.7 (Alpha) variant resulted in less durable binding antibody against B.1.1.529. Previously infection-naïve HCWs who became infected during the B.1.1.529 wave showed enhanced immunity against earlier variants but reduced nAb potency and T cell responses against B.1.1.529 itself. Previous Wuhan Hu-1 infection abrogated T cell recognition and any enhanced cross-reactive neutralizing immunity on infection with B.1.1.529.


Subject(s)
B-Lymphocytes , BNT162 Vaccine , COVID-19 , Immunization, Secondary , SARS-CoV-2 , T-Lymphocytes , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , BNT162 Vaccine/immunology , BNT162 Vaccine/therapeutic use , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cross Reactions , Humans , Mice , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
3.
J Immigr Minor Health ; 2022 Feb 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1712281

ABSTRACT

This study assessed the psychological wellbeing and its associated factors amongst ethnic minorities during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. A total of 310 Hong Kong South Asians aged 41.3 (SD 13.7) years completed an anonymous online survey between July 2020 and February 2021. The results showed an overall moderate level of stress and high levels of depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms amongst South Asian minorities. Multivariable regression analyses suggested that being single/divorced, following Hinduism or other non-Muslim religions, having lower perceived knowledge of COVID-19 and having worried about losing job were significant predictors of higher levels of depression, anxiety and/or stress; additionally, being male, having a low monthly household income, having worried about losing job and healthcare collapse were significant predictors of a higher level of PTSD symptoms. The findings suggest an urgent need to alleviate the psychological impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on ethnic minorities, specifically for those most vulnerable to these impacts.

4.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-305945

ABSTRACT

Background: Most biomedical research has focused on sampling COVID-19 patients presenting to hospital with advanced disease, with less focus on the asymptomatic or paucisymptomatic. We established a bioresource with serial sampling of health care workers (HCWs) designed to obtain samples before and during mainly mild disease, with follow-up sampling to evaluate the quality and duration of immune memory. Methods: : We conducted a prospective study on HCWs from three hospital sites in London, initially at a single centre (recruited just prior to first peak community transmission in London), but then extended to multiple sites 3 weeks later (recruitment still ongoing, target n=1,000). Asymptomatic participants attending work complete a health questionnaire, and provide a nasal swab (for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by RT-PCR tests) and blood samples (mononuclear cells, serum, plasma, RNA and DNA are biobanked) at 16 weekly study visits, and at 6 and 12 months. Results: : Preliminary baseline results for the first 731 HCWs (400 single-centre, 331 multicentre extension) are presented. Mean age was 38±11 years;67% are female, 31% nurses, 20% doctors, and 19% work in intensive care units. COVID-19-associated risk factors were: 37% black, Asian or minority ethnicities;18% smokers;13% obesity;11% asthma;7% hypertension and 2% diabetes mellitus. At baseline, 41% reported symptoms in the preceding 2 weeks. Preliminary test results from the initial cohort (n=400) are available: PCR at baseline for SARS-CoV-2 was positive in 28 of 396 (7.1%, 95% CI 4.9-10.0%) and 15 of 385 (3.9%, 2.4-6.3%) had circulating IgG antibodies. Conclusions: : This COVID-19 bioresource established just before the peak of infections in the UK will provide longitudinal assessments of incident infection and immune responses in HCWs through the natural time course of disease and convalescence. The samples and data from this bioresource are available to academic collaborators by application <ns3:ext-link xmlns:ns4="http://www.w3.org/1999/xlink" ext-link-type="uri" ns4:href="https://covid-consortium.com/application-for-samples/">https://covid-consortium.com/application-for-samples/</ns3:ext-link>.

6.
Wellcome Open Res ; 5: 179, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1068028

ABSTRACT

Background: Most biomedical research has focused on sampling COVID-19 patients presenting to hospital with advanced disease, with less focus on the asymptomatic or paucisymptomatic. We established a bioresource with serial sampling of health care workers (HCWs) designed to obtain samples before and during mainly mild disease, with follow-up sampling to evaluate the quality and duration of immune memory. Methods: We conducted a prospective study on HCWs from three hospital sites in London, initially at a single centre (recruited just prior to first peak community transmission in London), but then extended to multiple sites 3 weeks later (recruitment still ongoing, target n=1,000). Asymptomatic participants attending work complete a health questionnaire, and provide a nasal swab (for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by RT-PCR tests) and blood samples (mononuclear cells, serum, plasma, RNA and DNA are biobanked) at 16 weekly study visits, and at 6 and 12 months. Results: Preliminary baseline results for the first 731 HCWs (400 single-centre, 331 multicentre extension) are presented. Mean age was 38±11 years; 67% are female, 31% nurses, 20% doctors, and 19% work in intensive care units. COVID-19-associated risk factors were: 37% black, Asian or minority ethnicities; 18% smokers; 13% obesity; 11% asthma; 7% hypertension and 2% diabetes mellitus. At baseline, 41% reported symptoms in the preceding 2 weeks. Preliminary test results from the initial cohort (n=400) are available: PCR at baseline for SARS-CoV-2 was positive in 28 of 396 (7.1%, 95% CI 4.9-10.0%) and 15 of 385 (3.9%, 2.4-6.3%) had circulating IgG antibodies. Conclusions: This COVID-19 bioresource established just before the peak of infections in the UK will provide longitudinal assessments of incident infection and immune responses in HCWs through the natural time course of disease and convalescence. The samples and data from this bioresource are available to academic collaborators by application  https://covid-consortium.com/application-for-samples/.

7.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 17(21)2020 Oct 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-895365

ABSTRACT

This study assessed the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) towards coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) among South Asians in Hong Kong and examined the factors that affect KAP towards COVID-19 in this population. This cross-sectional descriptive study recruited participants with assistance from South Asian community centres and organisations. A total of 352 participants completed questionnaires to assess their level of KAP towards COVID-19. The mean knowledge score was 5.38/10, indicating a relatively low knowledge level. The participants expressed certain misconceptions regarding the prevention of COVID-19 infection. They perceived a mild risk related to the disease, had positive attitudes regarding its prevention and often implemented recommended disease-preventive measures, such as maintaining social distance (88.1%) and wearing masks in public (94.3%). Participants who were male, had a secondary school education or lower and who perceived a lower risk of being infected and lower self-efficacy were less likely to implement preventive measures. Culturally and linguistically appropriate health education could be developed to increase the knowledge of South Asians, especially those with lower education levels, about COVID-19 and to encourage them to implement the necessary preventive measures.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/ethnology , Coronavirus , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice/ethnology , Pneumonia, Viral/ethnology , Adult , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Hong Kong/epidemiology , Humans , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
8.
ProQuest Central; 2020.
Preprint in English | ProQuest Central | ID: ppcovidwho-2091

ABSTRACT

Background: Most biomedical research has focused on sampling COVID-19 patients presenting to hospital with advanced disease, with less focus on the asymptomatic or paucisymptomatic. We established a bioresource with serial sampling of health care workers (HCWs) designed to obtain samples before and during mainly mild disease, with follow-usampling to evaluate the quality and duration of immune memory. Methods: We conducted a prospective observational study on HCWs from three hospital sites in London, initially at a single centre (recruited just prior to first peak community transmission in London), but then extended to multiple sites 3 weeks later (recruitment still ongoing, target n=1,000). Asymptomatic participants attending work complete a health questionnaire, and provide a nasal swa(for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by RT-PCR tests) and blood samples (mononuclear cells, serum, plasma, RNA and DNA are biobanked) at 16 weekly study visits, and at 6 and 12 months. Results: Preliminary baseline results for the first 731 HCWs (400 single-centre, 331 multicentre extension) are presented. Mean age was 38±11 years;67% are female, 31% nurses, 20% doctors, and 19% work in intensive care units. COVID-19-associated risk factors were: 37% black, Asian or minority ethnicities;18% smokers;13% obesity;11% asthma;7% hypertension and 2% diabetes mellitus. At baseline, 41% reported symptoms in the preceding 2 weeks. Preliminary test results from the initial cohort (n=400) are available: PCR at baseline for SARS-CoV-2 was positive in 28 of 396 (7.1%, 95% C4.9-10.0%) and 15 of 385 (3.9%, 2.4-6.3%) had circulating IgG antibodies. Conclusions: This COVID-19 bioresource established just before the peak of infections in the UK will provide longitudinal assessments of incident infection and immune responses in HCWs through the natural time course of disease and convalescence. The samples and data from this bioresource are available to academic collaborators by application https://covid-consortium.com/application-for-samples/.

9.
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health ; 17(18):6673, 2020.
Article | MDPI | ID: covidwho-762517

ABSTRACT

Outbreaks of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have affected populations worldwide. Our literature review summarises the studies reporting psychological issues among healthcare staff and infected patients in mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan during these two outbreaks and the potential strategies for addressing these issues. Our review shows that patients and healthcare staff presented similar psychological symptoms, including anxiety, fear, distress, and depression, which may lead to stress-related complications such as insomnia. In patients, these psychological impairments can be contributed to by being quarantined, perceptions of threats to life, and uncertainty about health status. Quarantine is also a factor for distress among healthcare staff, together with their heavy workload, the fear that they and their families would become infected, witnessing their patients"poor and deteriorating conditions, and the requirement to wear protective gear. Strategies that are needed to address these factors include providing counselling services, implementing mindfulness-based therapies and optimism interventions, and providing telecommunication facilities for patients to communicate with their families. Healthcare staff should also be provided with these services, together with appropriate and flexible work shift arrangements and morale boosting. These strategies would improve not only the mental well-being of patients and healthcare staff, but also the self-efficacy and competence of the staff to provide quality healthcare services.

10.
Int J Ophthalmol ; 13(6): 851-859, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-605703

ABSTRACT

AIM: To review international guidelines and to share our infection control experience during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic at a tertiary eye centre in Hong Kong. METHODS: Infection control guidelines and recommendations from international ophthalmological bodies are reviewed and discussed. The measures at our hospital were drawn up as per international and local health authorities' guidelines and implemented with the collaboration of doctors, nurses and administrative staff. RESULTS: The aims of our infection control measures are to 1) minimize cross-infection within the hospital; 2) protect and support hospital staff; 3) ensure environmental control. To minimize the risk of cross-infection, outpatient attendance and elective surgery have been reduced by 40%, and general anesthesia procedures were reduced by 90%. Patients entering the hospital are screened for fever, travel history, contact and cluster history, and COVID-19 related symptoms. To protect and support hospital staff, we ensure provision of adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) and provide clear guidelines on the level of PPE needed, depending on the clinical situation. Other protective measures include provision of work uniforms, easy access to alcohol-based hand rub, opening new lunch areas, implementation of self-monitoring and self-reporting systems, and communication via online education and updates. Finally, environmental control is achieved by ensuring regular disinfection of the hospital premise, enhancing ventilation, and usage of disposable ophthalmic instruments. CONCLUSION: Our multi-pronged approach to infection control is, so far, successful in minimizing infection risks, while allowing the maintenance of essential ophthalmic services.

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