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2.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 121(3): 613-622, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333571

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Healthcare personnel (HCP) at the front line of care are exposed to occupational hazards that place them at risk for infection, which then endanger patient safety and compromise the capability of the healthcare workforce. As of March 8, 2021 more than 420,170 HCP in US had been infected with SARS CoV-2 with 1388 deaths. In two Taiwan hospitals COVID-19 outbreaks involved HCP and resulted in shutdown of service. This report describes our prospective health surveillance of the HCP and COVID-19 containment measures in a teaching hospital in Taiwan during Jan. 1 through June 30, 2020. METHODS: We prospectively monitored incidents, defined as an HCP with the predefined symptoms, reported by HCP through the web-based system. HCP were managed based on an algorithm that included SARS CoV-2 RNA PCR testing. Infection prevention and control policy/practice were reviewed. RESULTS: This hospital took care of 17 confirmed COVID-19 cases during the study period and the first Case was admitted on January 23, 2020. Among the 14,210 HCP, there were 367 incident events. Of 283 HCP tested for SARS CoV-2, 179 had predefined symptoms. These included 10 HCP who met the national case definition for COVID-19 infection and 169 based on Extended COVID-19 Community Screening program. The other 104 asymptomatic HCP were tested based on hospital policy. All of them had tested negative. CONCLUSION: We attribute our success in preventing COVID-19 infections among HCP to rapid, proactive, decisive, integrated national and institutional response in the early stages of the epidemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Academic Medical Centers , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Personnel , Humans , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Taiwan/epidemiology
3.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 120 Suppl 1: S69-S76, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253195

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Cumulative data of case-fatality rates (CFR) of COVID-19 varied across countries. A forecasting model generated based on detailed information from three countries during the initial phase of pandemic showed that progression rates from pneumonia to ARDS (PRPA) varied by country and were highly associated with CFR. We aim to elucidate the impact of the PRPA on COVID-19 deaths in different periods of pandemic. METHODS: We used the country-based, real-time global COVID-19 data through GitHub repository to estimate PRPA on the first period (January to June), second period (July to September), and third period (October to December) in 2020. PRPA was used for predicting COVID-19 deaths and assessing the reduction in deaths in subsequent two periods. RESULTS: The estimated PRPA varied widely from 0.38% to 51.36%, with an average of 15.99% in the first period. The PRPA declined to 8.44% and 6.35% in the second and third period. The CFR declined stepwise and was 4.94%, 2.61%, and 1.96%, respectively. Some countries exhibited a decrease in the PRPA from the second to the third period whereas others showed the opposite, particularly where selected viral mutants were prevalent. Overall, the number of observed deaths was lower than that of the predicted deaths in the second and third periods, suggesting an improvement in management of COVID-19 patients. Besides, the degree of improvement depends on the extent of change in PRPA. CONCLUSION: PRPA is a useful indicator to facilitate decision making and assess the improvement of clinical management and medical capacity by forecasting deaths.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Distress Syndrome , COVID-19/mortality , Disease Progression , Forecasting , Humans , Pandemics , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/mortality , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , SARS-CoV-2
4.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 120(12): 2186-2190, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1198883

ABSTRACT

We presented the clinical course and immune responses of a well-controlled HIV-positive patient with COVID-19. The clinical presentation and antibody production to SARS-CoV-2 were similar to other COVID-19 patients without HIV infection. Neutralizing antibody reached a plateau from 26th to 47th day onset but decreased on 157th day after symptoms.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , HIV Infections/complications , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , SARS-CoV-2
5.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 120(7): 1459-1463, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1014623

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at the frontline during the pandemic of COVID-19 globally. According to the WHO situation report at April 17, there were 22, 073 HCWs contracted the infection. Whether the infection control policy and practice in the hospital setting can protect the HCWs is an important issue. METHODS: We performed a cross-sectional serology study in a tertiary care hospital in Taiwan to explore the sero-prevalence rate among HCWs. The participants are enrolled on a voluntary basis. A structured questionnaire was collected to gather the epidemiology character and risk factors for potential exposure. ELISA tests as Architect SARS-CoV-2 IgG (Abbott) and Elecsys Anti-SARS-CoV-2 assay (Roche) were used to detect antibody responses. If any of the tests was positive, a western blot assay was used for confirmation. RESULTS: There were 194 HCWs participated during July 1 to Aug. 31, 2020. The mean age was 36.3 ± 10.4. More than half of the participants had possible hospital associated risk for COVID-19 exposure (110/192, 57.3%) and 64 had possible community risk for COVID-19 exposure (64/194, 33.0%). There was only one participant had positive test by Architect IgG test and confirmed to be negative for seasonal coronavirus and SARS-CoV-2 antibody. (Mikrogen Diagnostik, Germany). CONCLUSION: The cross-sectional serology study in a tertiary care hospital in Taiwan revealed no HCWs had positive serology response to SARS-CoV-2. We believe that the infection control policy and practice in the hospital and in the community are both important to prevent the disease transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Health Personnel , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Hospitals , Humans , Middle Aged , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Taiwan/epidemiology
6.
Clin Transl Sci ; 14(1): 132-136, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-952459

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a newly identified pathogen causing the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), an antimalarial and anti-inflammatory drug, has been shown to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro and tested in clinical studies. However, achievement of lung concentrations predicted to have in vivo antiviral efficacy might not be possible with the currently proposed oral dosing regimens. Further, high cumulative doses of HCQ raise concerns of systemic toxicity, including cardiotoxicity. Here, we describe a preclinical study to investigate the pharmacokinetics (PKs) of a novel formulation of liposomal HCQ administered by intratracheal (IT) instillation in Sprague-Dawley rats. Compared with unformulated HCQ administered intravenously, liposomal HCQ showed higher (~ 30-fold) lung exposure, longer (~ 2.5-fold) half-life in lungs, but lower blood exposure with ~ 20% of peak plasma concentration (Cmax ) and 74% of area under the curve from 0 to 72 hours (AUC0-72 ) and lower heart exposure with 23% of Cmax and 58% of AUC0-24 (normalized for dose). Similar results were observed relative to IT administration of unformulated HCQ. These PKs result in an animal model that demonstrated the proof of concept that inhalable liposomal HCQ may provide clinical benefit and serve as a potential treatment for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Hydroxychloroquine/administration & dosage , SARS-CoV-2 , Administration, Inhalation , Animals , Female , Hydroxychloroquine/adverse effects , Hydroxychloroquine/pharmacokinetics , Liposomes , Lung/metabolism , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
7.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 120(5): 1269-1273, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-728694

ABSTRACT

Until now, there are no approved treatment against COVID-19. Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) was hypothesized to be active against SARS-CoV2 via antiviral and anti-inflammatory effect; however, HCQ for COVID-19 in clinical use remained debating. In this preliminary report, we presented six patients with mild to moderate COVID-19. They were treated with HCQ for 14 days from the day of COVID-19 diagnosis. Serial viral load from respiratory specimens were performed every other day. Cytokine profile was checked before HCQ initiation and on the 14th day of HCQ treatment. All patients receiving HCQ completed 14-day course without complication. Among the six patients, the mean duration from symptom onset to last detectable viral load was 34 ± 12 days, which was similar to those without specific treatment in previous reports. Low level of interferon-gamma was noted in all patients of different stage of infection and three patients had elevation of IL-17 level. Prolonged virus shedding is still observed regardless HCQ. The impact of HCQ on cytokine kinetics remained unclear; however, IL-17 could be an inflammatory marker for disease status monitor and a potential therapeutic target.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hydroxychloroquine , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19 Testing , Cytokines , Humans , Kinetics , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome , Viral Load
8.
J Am Med Dir Assoc ; 21(1): 62-67, 2020 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-124747

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Virus infection is underevaluated in older adults with severe acute respiratory infections (SARIs). We aimed to evaluate the clinical impact of combining point-of-care molecular viral test and serum procalcitonin (PCT) level for antibiotic stewardship in the emergency department (ED). DESIGN: A prospective twin-center cohort study was conducted between January 2017 and March 2018. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Older adult patients who presented to the ED with SARIs received a rapid molecular test for 17 respiratory viruses and a PCT test. MEASURES: To evaluate the clinical impact, we compared the outcomes of SARI patients between the experimental cohort and a propensity score-matched historical cohort. The primary outcome was the proportion of antibiotics discontinuation or de-escalation in the ED. The secondary outcomes included duration of intravenous antibiotics, length of hospital stay, and mortality. RESULTS: A total of 676 patients were included, of which 169 patients were in the experimental group and 507 patients were in the control group. More than one-fourth (27.9%) of the patients in the experimental group tested positive for virus. Compared with controls, the experimental group had a significantly higher proportion of antibiotics discontinuation or de-escalation in the ED (26.0% vs 16.1%, P = .007), neuraminidase inhibitor uses (8.9% vs 0.6%, P < .001), and shorter duration of intravenous antibiotics (10.0 vs 14.5 days, P < .001). CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Combining rapid viral surveillance and PCT test is a useful strategy for early detection of potential viral epidemics and antibiotic stewardship. Clustered viral respiratory infections in a nursing home is common. Patients transferred from nursing homes to ED may benefit from this approach.


Subject(s)
Antimicrobial Stewardship/methods , Procalcitonin/blood , Respiratory Tract Infections/diagnosis , Virus Diseases/diagnosis , Aged , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Biomarkers/blood , Case-Control Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , Respiratory Tract Infections/complications , Virus Diseases/complications , Virus Diseases/drug therapy
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