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1.
Pan Afr Med J ; 37: 148, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1022216

ABSTRACT

As coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases continue to increase in Africa, healthcare workers (HCWs) have a high risk of being infected and the risks may be higher among those who work closely with patients. The risks of HCW infections can be mitigated with adequate precautions within healthcare facilities, especially with the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). We highlight and contextualise the findings of a Cochrane review on the type of PPE that protects best, the best way to put PPE on (donning) or to remove PPE (doffing) and how to train HCWs to use PPE. The review found low-certainty of evidence that full body PPE offer more protection, but HCWs may be faced with difficulty during donning and doffing. Following standard guidelines may be helpful in reducing infection and increasing compliance among HCWs. Video training and simulations may be better methods for training on the correct use of PPE than traditional methods of teaching. Countries must, therefore, ensure that HCWs undergo compulsory training on the correct use of PPE; regardless of their professional category. Of the 24 studies included in this review, none was conducted on the African continent. There is thus an urgent need for well conducted studies on the experiences of HCWs using full-body covering PPE within the African context. Such studies could lead to tailored interventions that will improve the proper use of PPE among HCWs.

2.
Pan Afr Med J ; 35(Suppl 2): 108, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1000612

ABSTRACT

The magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented, causing lots of apprehension among scientists, industry actors, politicians, and the general populace. Adverse health, social and economic effects of the pandemic have triggered an urgency among policy makers to seek an effective panacea. In this commentary, we examine the covert outbreak of a demand for alternative remedies with limited scientific evidence on their effectiveness to manage COVID-19 in Africa. Similar demands have been displayed in previous epidemics, though the ubiquity of social media in this current clime fuels such demands even more. We describe the attendant consequences of this demand surge on ongoing public health efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and highlight its future repercussions which may continue to plague health systems beyond the present outbreak. Going forward, governments must be proactive in surveillance of this covert epidemic, actively engage community influencers in knowledge transfer and implement targeted health promotion interventions.


Subject(s)
/epidemiology , Complementary Therapies , Africa/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control
3.
Pan Afr Med J ; 37(Suppl 1): 8, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-967229

ABSTRACT

Contact tracing is a public health measure implemented to control the spread and break the chains of transmission of an infectious disease. It is done by identifying, assessing, and managing people who have been exposed to an infectious disease to prevent onward transmission. We summarize findings from a rapid Cochrane review that included cohort and modelling studies to assess the benefits and harms of digital solutions for identifying contacts of confirmed positive cases of an infectious disease. The review included 12 studies, which assessed digital contact tracing for the following infectious diseases: Ebola, tuberculosis, pertussis and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This review revealed low-certainty evidence of a decrease in secondary cases of the targeted infectious disease, if digital contact tracing was used. However, it is uncertain from the currently available evidence whether digital contact tracing would produce more reliable counts of contacts and reduce the time taken to complete contact tracing. Therefore, implementation of digital contact tracing in the context of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in African countries should be accompanied by a robust monitoring and evaluation framework. There should be an evaluation and documentation of the benefits, cost-effectiveness, acceptability, feasibility, equity impacts, and unintended consequences of the intervention.

4.
Pan Afr Med J ; 35(Suppl 2): 119, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-962486

ABSTRACT

There is currently no approved pharmaceutical product for the treatment of COVID-19. However, antibiotics are currently being used for the management of COVID-19 patients in many settings either treat to co-infections or for the treatment of COVID-19 itself. In this commentary, we highlight that the increased rates of antimicrobial prescribing for COVID-19 patients could further worsen the burden of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). We also highlight that though AMR is a global threat, Africa tends to suffer most from the consequences. We, therefore, call on African countries not to lose sight of the possible implications of the treatment of COVID-19 on AMR and a need to redouble efforts towards the fight against AMR while dealing with the pandemic.


Subject(s)
Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Drug Resistance, Bacterial , Africa , Humans
5.
Pan Afr Med J ; 37: 47, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-946276

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 has created a global public health emergency with significant mortality and morbidity for people living with HIV (PLWH). Preliminary data reveals persons with immune-compromised status are at risk of developing adverse clinical outcomes from SARS-CoV-2. We aimed to characterise clinical outcomes of HIV patients co-infected with SARS-CoV-2 infection in Nasarawa State, North Central Nigeria. We followed four (4) hospitalised HIV patients that tested positive to SARS-CoV-2 in Nasarawa State and characterised their laboratory findings and clinical outcomes. The consent of the cases was sought and they agreed that their clinical data be published. Real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests for SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid were performed using nasopharyngeal swabs (novel coronavirus PCR fluorescence diagnostic kit, BioGerm medical biotechnology) at the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in Abuja, Nigeria. Our study reveals mild clinical outcome among HIV patients with SARS-CoV-2 co-infection. There is need for a syndemic framework to be used to conceptualise SARS-CoV-2 impact among HIV patients and an urgent need to strengthen healthcare programmes within Nigeria.


Subject(s)
Anti-Retroviral Agents/therapeutic use , Betacoronavirus , Coinfection/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome , Sex Workers , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Female , Glucocorticoids/therapeutic use , Humans , Methylprednisolone/therapeutic use , Nigeria , Norfloxacin/therapeutic use , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , gamma-Globulins/therapeutic use
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