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1.
Vaccines ; 11(1):176, 2023.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-2200951

ABSTRACT

University students are a sub-group of the population at high risk of COVID-19 infection, and their judgments on vaccination affect the public attitudes towards vaccination. Thus, the present study aimed to assess the knowledge, attitudes, perceptions, and acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine among pharmacy and non-pharmacy students. A cross-sectional study was conducted by enrolling pharmacy (375) and non-pharmacy (225) students from the universities in Lahore. Chi-square analysis was used for significant frequency distributions and a 5-point Likert scale was used to score attitude, perception, and acceptance. The majority of the students were aged between 19-24 years, hailing from urban and middle-class families with good self-reported health. The preferred vaccine was Pfizer, followed by Sinopharm and Sinovac. The major source of information was social media, followed by government campaigns and family members. The pharmacy students demonstrated better knowledge and positive attitudes toward COVID-19 vaccination. The non-pharmacy students scored higher for the questions based on scientific leads, myths, and baffling conspiracies. The non-pharmacy students showed higher hesitancy/barrier total scores related to their trust in the health system, COVID-19 vaccine storage, and efficacy. Data suggested that pharmacy students exhibited better knowledge, positive attitudes, and perceptions about COVID-19 vaccination. Overall, vaccine efficacy and safety were mutual concerns. Nonetheless, non-pharmacy students were hesitant due to mistrust in the health system of Pakistan.

3.
PLoS One ; 17(8): e0270900, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2021858

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The COVID-19 pandemic has badly affected the world with its devastating effects, including Sindh, Pakistan. A massive vaccination campaign against COVID-19 is considered one of the effective ways to curtail the spread of the disease. However, the acceptability of the COVID-19 vaccine is based on the general population's knowledge, attitude, perception and willingness for vaccination. Therefore, a survey among the public in Sindh, Pakistan, was done to evaluate their knowledge, attitude, perception and willingness to accept COVID-19 vaccination. METHOD: The online survey was conducted among the residents of Sindh, Pakistan, in July 2021 through a survey tool designed using Google Forms and sent to the population through various social media. RESULTS: Of 926 study participants, 59.0% were male, and 68.6% were aged between 18 and 31 years. Higher percentages of responses were recorded from the Hyderabad division (37.5%), and 60.0% of respondents were graduates, with 34.8% of them in the private sector. The results showed that 36.4% of respondents had good knowledge, and 30.3% had a positive attitude toward COVID-19 vaccination. Almost 77% of respondents perceived that everyone should get vaccinated in the country and those health care workers on priority. A majority (80.8%) of respondents were willing to accept COVID-19 vaccination. CONCLUSION: Despite having insufficient knowledge and a low percentage of positive attitude public in Sindh are willing to be vaccinated. Based on this finding, more effort has to be done to promote vaccination among the public, especially among the less educated population.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Pakistan/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Surveys and Questionnaires , Vaccination , Young Adult
4.
Psychol Res Behav Manag ; 13: 1047-1055, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1725157

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: The COVID-19 (coronavirus disease-2019) has been associated with psychological distress during its rapid rise period in Pakistan. The present study aimed to assess the mental health of healthcare workers (HCWs) in the three metropolitan cities of Pakistan. METHODS: A cross-sectional, web-based study was conducted in 276 HCWs from April 10, 2020, to June 5, 2020. Depression, anxiety, and stress scale (DASS-21) were used for the mental health assessment of the HCWs. Multivariable logistic regression analysis (MLRA) was performed to measure the association between the demographics and the occurrence of depression, anxiety, and stress (DAS). RESULTS: The frequency of DAS in the HCWs was 10.1%, 25.4%, and 7.3%, respectively. The MLRA showed that the depression in HCWs was significantly associated with the profession (P<0.001). The anxiety in HCWs was significantly associated with their age (P=0.005), profession (P<0.05), and residence (P<0.05). The stress in HCWs was significantly associated with their age (P<0.05). LIMITATION: This study was conducted in the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the number of COVID-19 cases was on the rise in Pakistan and it only represents a definite period (April to June 2020). CONCLUSION: The symptoms of DAS are present in the HCWs of Pakistan and to manage the psychological health of HCWs, there is a need for the initiation of psychological well-being programs.

5.
Front Pharmacol ; 12: 807446, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1686522

ABSTRACT

Background: With the increased availability of safe antiretroviral therapy (ART) in recent years, achieving optimal adherence and patient retention is becoming the biggest challenge for people living with HIV (PLWH). Care retention is influenced by several socioeconomic, socio-cultural, and government policies during the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, we aim to explore barriers and facilitators to adherence to ART among PLWH in Pakistan in general and COVID-19 pandemic related in particular. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted among 25 PLWH from December 2020 to April 2021 in the local language (Urdu) at the ART centre of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences, Islamabad, Pakistan. Interviews were audio-recorded in the local Urdu language, and bilingual expert (English, Urdu) transcribed verbatim, coded for themes and sub-themes, and analyzed using a phenomenological approach for thematic content analysis. Results: Stigma and discrimination, fear of HIV disclosure, economic constraints, forgetfulness, religion (Ramadan, spiritual healing), adverse drug reactions, lack of social support, alternative therapies, and COVID-19-related lock-down and fear of lesser COVID-19 care due to HIV associated stigma were identified as barriers affecting the retention in HIV care. At the same time, positive social support, family responsibilities, use of reminders, the beneficial impact of ART, and initiation of telephone consultations, courier delivery, and long-term delivery of antiretrovirals during COVID-19 were identified as facilitators of HIV retention. Conclusion: Improving adherence and retention is even more challenging due to COVID-19; therefore, it requires the integration of enhanced access to treatment with improved employment and social support. HIV care providers must understand these reported factors comprehensively and treat patients accordingly to ensure the continuum of HIV care. A coordinated approach including different stakeholders is required to facilitate patient retention in HIV care and consequently improve the clinical outcomes of PLWH.

6.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 9(7)2021 Jul 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1295945

ABSTRACT

The current study aims to assess the beliefs of the general public in Pakistan towards conspiracy theories, acceptance, willingness to pay, and preference for the COVID-19 vaccine. A cross-sectional study was conducted through an online self-administered questionnaire during January 2021. The Chi-square test or Fisher exact test was utilized for statistical data analysis. A total of 2158 respondents completed the questionnaire, among them 1192 (55.2%) were male with 23.87 (SD: ±6.23) years as mean age. The conspiracy beliefs circulating regarding the COVID-19 vaccine were believed by 9.3% to 28.4% of the study participants. Among them, 1040 (48.2%) agreed to vaccinate on its availability while 934 (43.3%) reported the Chinese vaccine as their preference. The conspiracy beliefs of the participants were significantly associated with acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine. The existence of conspiracy beliefs and low vaccine acceptance among the general population is a serious threat to successful COVID-19 vaccination.

7.
J Multidiscip Healthc ; 14: 665-672, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1154153

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic is not only affecting public health, but it is also impairing the specialized surgical care services in the hospitals. The present study aimed to assess the barriers faced by the surgeons while performing surgical procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A cross-sectional, web-based survey was conducted from September 10 to October 14, 2020. The study population consisted of surgeons practicing in Kpk, Pakistan. Descriptive statistics and binary logistic regression analysis were used to analyze the data. RESULTS: A total of 292, out of 543, surgeons participated in the study (response rate: 59.6%). The younger surgeons (25-30 years) considered the lack of policies and practices regarding exposure to COVID-19 patients as a significant barrier to their practice. The surgeons practicing in private hospitals considered themselves at a higher risk while providing surgical care to the COVID-19 patients. The non-cooperation of the patients was the main barrier in delivering surgical care services. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION: The current study highlighted the barriers to the surgeons while providing surgical care to patients in the current pandemic. The most pronounced barriers to the surgeons were the lack of policies regarding exposure to COVID-19 and practice and non-cooperation of the patient. To address these barriers, it is recommended that health regulatory agencies of Pakistan should implement strict infection control practices to ensure the safety of surgeons and allied healthcare staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

8.
J Relig Health ; 59(6): 2697-2700, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-932581

ABSTRACT

For decades, religion has provided explanations and answers to existential questions and queries that can emerge during a pandemic. This characteristic of religion has helped communities in finding answers and meanings to their confusions. During a pandemic, healthcare professionals are often unprepared in answering the patients' religious beliefs regarding the diseases. Moreover, patients are faced with religious clichés and stigma that results because of religious beliefs and practices. To overcome the religious stigma, a deeper understanding of religious beliefs and values is required so that a perception or practice change can take place. Therefore, the inclusion and collaboration of spiritual leaders with healthcare professionals are needed to ensure a holistic understanding and overcome the stigma that can shape as a barrier for reaching an optimal therapeutic outcome.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , Religion , Social Stigma , Spirituality , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
9.
PLoS One ; 15(11): e0241467, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-914230

ABSTRACT

To evaluate the pharmacist's preparedness against the COVID-19 during its rapid rise period in Pakistan, an online cross-sectional study was carried out from March 30 to May 22, 2020 among the pharmacists using a pre-validated self-administered questionnaire. A total of 1149 participants completed the survey, amongst which 430(37.9%) were working as retail pharmacists, 216 (18.8%) as community pharmacists, and 213(18.5%) as hospital pharmacists. The mean COVID-19 knowledge score of the participants was 6.77±0.5, which indicated that 84% of them had good knowledge about COVID-19. The multiple linear regression model revealed that attitude was significantly associated with gender (p = 0.001), marital status (p<0.0001) and resident (p = 0.013). The mean practice score was 2.85±0.4, showing that 94% of the participants were following adequate preventive practices against this infection. The results from this study suggest that Pharmacists demonstrated good knowledge, positive attitudes, and acceptable practices regarding COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pharmacists , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Adult , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Infection Control , Linear Models , Male , Middle Aged , Pakistan/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
12.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 17(17)2020 09 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-742791

ABSTRACT

In the current outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), healthcare professionals (HCPs) have a primary role in combating the epidemic threat. HCPs are at high risk of not only contracting the infection but also spreading it unknowingly. It is of utmost importance to evaluate their knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) and the ability to assess the risks associated with the outbreak. A cross-sectional online survey involving physicians, pharmacists, and nurses was conducted. A 39-itemed questionnaire based on the World Health Organization (WHO)COVID-19 risk assessment tool was shared with healthcare professionals in three purposively selected key divisions of Punjab province. Out of 500 healthcare professionals, 385 responded to the survey. The majority (70%) were aged 22-29 years; 144 (37.4%) physicians, 113 (29.4%) nurses, and 128 (33.2%) pharmacists completed the survey. Overall, 94.8% of healthcare professionals scored adequately (>14) for COVID-19-related knowledge; 97.9% displayed an optimistic attitude (>42) and 94.5% had an adequate practice score (>28). Kruskal-Wallis and Jonckheere-Terpstra tests showed significant differences (p < 0.05) in KAP and risk assessment scores among groups; physicians and nurses scored higher as compared to pharmacists. Further research and follow-up investigations on disaster management and risk assessment can help policy-makers better tackle future epidemics.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice , Health Personnel , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Adult , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Pakistan , Risk Assessment , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
13.
J Community Health ; 46(3): 441-449, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-649473

ABSTRACT

An online cross-sectional study was carried out to evaluate the knowledge, attitude, and practice about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) among primary health care providers (PHPs) at three tertiary care hospital, Peshawar, Pakistan. Data was collected via email and online social media platforms. Statistical package for social science (SPSS) version 25.0 was used for data analysis. Among the total participants (n = 114), 74 (66.7%) were male and 37 (33.3%) were female. The mean scores for knowledge, attitude and practice were 12.7 ± 0.89, 8.9 ± 4.1 and 7.3 ± 1.2, respectively. Most of the participants knew the term COVID-19 and its mode of transmission (90%), signs and symptoms (84%) and risk factors (72%) associated with it. Most of the participants agreed that COVID-19 can be transmitted through coughing and sneezing (74.3%) and 84.6% were in favor that COVID-19 can be prevented by adopting preventive measures. Around 68.8% of the participants disagreed with the use of antibiotics in the prevention of COVID-19. Ninety percent of the respondents were avoiding close contact with the people having cough and flu-like symptoms. Most PHPs had good knowledge, positive attitude and reasonable practices regarding COVID-19. Moreover, focused training programs for PHPs at the Government level can further improve their understanding of risks and preventive strategies related to COVID-19, which will help them to provide appropriate care to their patients as well as to protect themselves from this infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice , Medical Staff, Hospital/psychology , Primary Health Care , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Medical Staff, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Pakistan/epidemiology , Tertiary Care Centers , Young Adult
14.
Am J Trop Med Hyg ; 103(2): 603-604, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-614629

ABSTRACT

Immediately after declaring COVID-19 as a pandemic, numerous wild conspiracy theories sprouted through social media. Pakistan is quite vulnerable to such conspiracy narratives and has experienced failures of polio vaccination programs because of such claims. Recently, two well-known political figures raised conspiracy theories against COVID-19 vaccines in Pakistan, stating that COVID-19 is a grand illusion and a conspiracy against Muslim countries. This theory is much discussed in the local community, supporting COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. We urge healthcare authorities in Pakistan to take necessary measures against such claims before they penetrate to the general community. Anti-vaccine movements could undermine efforts to end the COVID-19 pandemic. We believe that ethical and responsible behavior of mass media, a careful advisory from the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority, stern measures from healthcare authorities, effective maneuvers to increase public awareness on COVID-19, vigorous analysis of information by data or communications scientists, and publication of counter opinions from health professionals against such theories will go a long way in neutralizing such misleading claims. Because Pakistan is experiencing a large burden of disease, with a sharp rise in confirmed cases, immediate action is of paramount importance to eradicate any potential barriers to a future COVID-19 vaccination program.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Health Communication , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Vaccination Refusal , Viral Vaccines , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Vaccines , Health Education , Health Personnel , Humans , Mass Media , Pakistan , Religion , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
15.
Drugs Ther Perspect ; 36(6): 250-252, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-47044
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