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1.
BMC Public Health ; 22(1): 446, 2022 03 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1731526

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Open online forums like Reddit provide an opportunity to quantitatively examine COVID-19 vaccine perceptions early in the vaccine timeline. We examine COVID-19 misinformation on Reddit following vaccine scientific announcements, in the initial phases of the vaccine timeline. METHODS: We collected all posts on Reddit (reddit.com) from January 1 2020 - December 14 2020 (n=266,840) that contained both COVID-19 and vaccine-related keywords. We used topic modeling to understand changes in word prevalence within topics after the release of vaccine trial data. Social network analysis was also conducted to determine the relationship between Reddit communities (subreddits) that shared COVID-19 vaccine posts, and the movement of posts between subreddits. RESULTS: There was an association between a Pfizer press release reporting 90% efficacy and increased discussion on vaccine misinformation. We observed an association between Johnson and Johnson temporarily halting its vaccine trials and reduced misinformation. We found that information skeptical of vaccination was first posted in a subreddit (r/Coronavirus) which favored accurate information and then reposted in subreddits associated with antivaccine beliefs and conspiracy theories (e.g. conspiracy, NoNewNormal). CONCLUSIONS: Our findings can inform the development of interventions where individuals determine the accuracy of vaccine information, and communications campaigns to improve COVID-19 vaccine perceptions, early in the vaccine timeline. Such efforts can increase individual- and population-level awareness of accurate and scientifically sound information regarding vaccines and thereby improve attitudes about vaccines, especially in the early phases of vaccine roll-out. Further research is needed to understand how social media can contribute to COVID-19 vaccination services.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Social Media , Vaccines , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
2.
J Health Commun ; 26(12): 846-857, 2021 12 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1612315

ABSTRACT

The duration and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic depends largely on individual and societal actions which are influenced by the quality and salience of the information to which they are exposed. Unfortunately, COVID-19 misinformation has proliferated. Despite growing attempts to mitigate COVID-19 misinformation, there is still uncertainty regarding the best way to ameliorate the impact of COVID-19 misinformation. To address this gap, the current study uses a meta-analysis to evaluate the relative impact of interventions designed to mitigate COVID-19-related misinformation. We searched multiple databases and gray literature from January 2020 to September 2021. The primary outcome was COVID-19 misinformation belief. We examined study quality and meta-analysis was used to pool data with similar interventions and outcomes. 16 studies were analyzed in the meta-analysis, including data from 33378 individuals. The mean effect size of interventions to mitigate COVID-19 misinformation was positive, but not statistically significant [d = 2.018, 95% CI (-0.14, 4.18), p = .065, k = 16]. We found evidence of publication bias. Interventions were more effective in cases where participants were involved with the topic, and where text-only mitigation was used. The limited focus on non-U.S. studies and marginalized populations is concerning given the greater COVID-19 mortality burden on vulnerable communities globally. The findings of this meta-analysis describe the current state of the literature and prescribe specific recommendations to better address the proliferation of COVID-19 misinformation, providing insights helpful to mitigating pandemic outcomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communication , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
3.
Addict Behav ; 127: 107213, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1588557

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We conducted a scoping review focused on various forms of substance use amid the pandemic, looking at both the impact of substance use on COVID-19 infection, severity, and vaccine uptake, as well as the impact that COVID-19 has had on substance use treatment and rates. METHODS: A scoping review, compiling both peer-reviewed and grey literature, focusing on substance use and COVID-19 was conducted on September 15, 2020 and again in April 15, 2021 to capture any new studies. Three bibliographic databases (Web of Science Core Collection, Embase, PubMed) and several preprint servers (EuropePMC, bioRxiv, medRxiv, F1000, PeerJ Preprints, PsyArXiv, Research Square) were searched. We included English language original studies only. RESULTS: Of 1564 articles screened in the abstract and title screening phase, we included 111 research studies (peer-reviewed: 98, grey literature: 13) that met inclusion criteria. There was limited research on substance use other than those involving tobacco or alcohol. We noted that individuals engaging in substance use had increased risk for COVID-19 severity, and Black Americans with COVID-19 and who engaged in substance use had worse outcomes than white Americans. There were issues with treatment provision earlier in the pandemic, but increased use of telehealth as the pandemic progressed. COVID-19 anxiety was associated with increased substance use. CONCLUSIONS: Our scoping review of studies to date during COVID-19 uncovered notable research gaps namely the need for research efforts on vaccines, COVID-19 concerns such as anxiety and worry, and low- to middle-income countries (LMICs) and under-researched topics within substance use, and to explore the use of qualitative techniques and interventions where appropriate. We also noted that clinicians can screen and treat individuals exhibiting substance use to mitigate effects of the pandemic. FUNDING: Study was funded by the Institution for Social and Policy Studies, Yale University and The Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy. DH was funded by a NIDA grant (R01DA048860). The funding body had no role in the design, analysis, or interpretation of the data in the study.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance-Related Disorders , Telemedicine , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology
4.
Sex Transm Infect ; 97(6): 402-410, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1158121

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed and exacerbated existing socioeconomic and health disparities, including disparities in sexual health and well-being. While there have been several reviews published on COVID-19 and population health disparities generally-including some with attention to HIV-none has focused on sexual health (ie, STI care, female sexual health, sexual behaviour). We have conducted a scoping review focused on sexual health (excluding reproductive health (RH), intimate partner violence (IPV) and gender-based violence (GBV)) in the COVID-19 era, examining sexual behaviours and sexual health outcomes. METHODS: A scoping review, compiling both peer-reviewed and grey literature, focused on sexual health (excluding RH, IPV and GBV) and COVID-19 was conducted on 15 September 2020. Multiple bibliographical databases were searched. Study selection conformed to Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) Reviewers' Manual 2015 Methodology for JBI Scoping Reviews. We only included English-language original studies. RESULTS: We found that men who have sex with men may be moving back toward pre-pandemic levels of sexual activity, and that STI and HIV testing rates seem to have decreased. There was minimal focus on outcomes such as the economic impact on sexual health (excluding RH, IPV and GBV) and STI care, especially STI care of marginalised populations. In terms of population groups, there was limited focus on sex workers or on women, especially women's sexual behaviour and mental health. We noticed limited use of qualitative techniques. Very few studies were in low/middle-income countries (LMICs). CONCLUSIONS: Sexual health research is critical during a global infectious disease pandemic and our review of studies suggested notable research gaps. Researchers can focus efforts on LMICs and under-researched topics within sexual health and explore the use of qualitative techniques and interventions where appropriate.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Sexual Health , Female , Humans , Male , SARS-CoV-2
5.
Syst Rev ; 10(1): 48, 2021 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1063199

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic is creating severe issues for healthcare and broad social structures, exposing societal vulnerabilities. Among the populations affected by COVID-19 are people engaged in substance use, such as people who smoke; vape (e-cigarette use); use opioids, cannabis, alcohol, or psychoactive prescription drugs; or have a substance use disorder (SUD). Monitoring substance use and SUD during the pandemic is essential, as people who engage in substance use or present with SUD are at greater risk for COVID-19, and the economic and social changes resulting from the pandemic may aggravate SUD. There have been several reviews focused on COVID-19 in relation to substance use and SUD. Reviews generally did not consider on a large range of substance use variants or SUDs. We plan a scoping review that seeks to fill gaps in our current understanding of substance use and SUD, in the COVID-19 era. METHODS: A scoping review focused on substance use and SUD, in relation to COVID-19, will be conducted. We will search (from January 2020 onwards) Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, Africa-Wide Information, Web of Science Core Collection, Embase, Global Health, WHO Global Literature on Coronavirus Disease Database, WHO Global Index Medicus, PsycINFO, PubMed, Middle Eastern Central Asian Studies, CINAHL Complete, and Sociological Abstracts. Grey literature will be identified using Disaster Lit, Google Scholar, HSRProj, governmental websites, and clinical trials registries (e.g., ClinicalTrial.gov , World Health Organization, International Clinical Trials Registry Platform and International Standard Randomized Con-trolled Trial Number registry). Study selection will conform to Joanna Briggs Institute Reviewers' Manual 2015 Methodology for JBI Scoping Reviews. Only English language, original studies investigating substance use and SUD, in relation to COVID-19 in all populations and settings, will be considered for inclusion. Two reviewers will independently screen all citations, full-text articles, and abstract data. A narrative summary of findings will be conducted. Data analysis will involve quantitative (e.g., frequencies) and qualitative (e.g., content and thematic analysis) methods. DISCUSSION: Original research is urgently needed to mitigate the risks of COVID-19 on substance use and SUD. The planned scoping review will help to address this gap. SYSTEMATIC REVIEW REGISTRATION: Open Science Framework (osf/io/tzgm5).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Illicit Drugs , Opioid-Related Disorders , Smoking , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Humans , Risk Factors , Vaping
6.
Syst Rev ; 10(1): 37, 2021 01 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1042776

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Global responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have exposed and exacerbated existing socioeconomic and health inequities that disproportionately affect the sexual health and well-being of many populations, including people of color, ethnic minority groups, women, and sexual and gender minority populations. Although there have been several reviews published on COVID-19 and health disparities across various populations, none has focused on sexual health. We plan to conduct a scoping review that seeks to fill several of the gaps in the current knowledge of sexual health in the COVID-19 era. METHODS: A scoping review focusing on sexual health and COVID-19 will be conducted. We will search (from January 2020 onwards) CINAHL, Africa-Wide Information, Web of Science Core Collection, Embase, Gender Studies Database, Gender Watch, Global Health, WHO Global Literature on Coronavirus Disease Database, WHO Global Index Medicus, PsycINFO, MEDLINE, and Sociological Abstracts. Grey literature will be identified using Disaster Lit, Google Scholar, governmental websites, and clinical trials registries (e.g., ClinicalTrial.gov , World Health Organization, International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, and International Standard Randomized Controlled Trial Number Registry). Study selection will conform to the Joanna Briggs Institute Reviewers' Manual 2015 Methodology for JBI Scoping Reviews. Only English language, original studies will be considered for inclusion. Two reviewers will independently screen all citations, full-text articles, and abstract data. A narrative summary of findings will be conducted. Data analysis will involve quantitative (e.g., frequencies) and qualitative (e.g., content and thematic analysis) methods. DISCUSSION: Original research is urgently needed to mitigate the risks of COVID-19 on sexual health. The planned scoping review will help to address this gap. SYSTEMATIC REVIEW REGISTRATIONS: Systematic Review Registration: Open Science Framework osf/io/PRX8E.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/ethnology , Pandemics , Sexual Health , Sexual and Gender Minorities , COVID-19/psychology , Female , Global Health , Humans , Male , Minority Groups
7.
J Med Internet Res ; 22(10): e21743, 2020 10 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-982837

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 outbreak was designated a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. The relationship between vaping and contracting COVID-19 is unclear, and information on the internet is conflicting. There is some scientific evidence that vaping cannabidiol (CBD), an active ingredient in cannabis that is obtained from the hemp plant, or other substances is associated with more severe manifestations of COVID-19. However, there is also inaccurate information that vaping can aid COVID-19 treatment, as well as expert opinion that CBD, possibly administered through vaping, can mitigate COVID-19 symptoms. Thus, it is necessary to study the spread of inaccurate information to better understand how to promote scientific knowledge and curb inaccurate information, which is critical to the health of vapers. Inaccurate information about vaping and COVID-19 may affect COVID-19 treatment outcomes. OBJECTIVE: Using structural topic modeling, we aimed to map temporal trends in the web-based vaping narrative (a large data set comprising web-based vaping chatter from several sources) to indicate how the narrative changed from before to during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We obtained data using a textual query that scanned a data pool of approximately 200,000 different domains (4,027,172 documents and 361,100,284 words) such as public internet forums, blogs, and social media, from August 1, 2019, to April 21, 2020. We then used structural topic modeling to understand changes in word prevalence and semantic structures within topics around vaping before and after December 31, 2019, when COVID-19 was reported to the World Health Organization. RESULTS: Broadly, the web-based vaping narrative can be organized into the following groups or archetypes: harms from vaping; Vaping Regulation; Vaping as Harm Reduction or Treatment; and Vaping Lifestyle. Three archetypes were observed prior to the emergence of COVID-19; however, four archetypes were identified post-COVID-19 (Vaping as Harm Reduction or Treatment was the additional archetype). A topic related to CBD product preference emerged after COVID-19 was first reported, which may be related to the use of CBD by vapers as a COVID-19 treatment. CONCLUSIONS: Our main finding is the emergence of a vape-administered CBD treatment narrative around COVID-19 when comparing the web-based vaping narratives before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. These results are key to understanding how vapers respond to inaccurate information about COVID-19, optimizing treatment of vapers who contract COVID-19, and possibly minimizing instances of inaccurate information. The findings have implications for the management of COVID-19 among vapers and the monitoring of web-based content pertinent to tobacco to develop targeted interventions to manage COVID-19 among vapers.


Subject(s)
Cannabidiol/administration & dosage , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/etiology , Internet/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/etiology , Vaping/adverse effects , Vaping/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Cannabidiol/adverse effects , Cannabidiol/pharmacology , Cannabidiol/therapeutic use , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Smokers/psychology , Smokers/statistics & numerical data , Social Media , Tobacco Products
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