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CMAJ Open ; 9(4): E929-E939, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1468744


BACKGROUND: Health care workers have a critical role in the pandemic response to COVID-19 and may be at increased risk of infection. The objective of this study was to assess the seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies among health care workers during and after the first wave of the pandemic. METHODS: We conducted a prospective multicentre cohort study involving health care workers in Ontario, Canada, to detect IgG antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. Blood samples and self-reported questionnaires were obtained at enrolment, at 6 weeks and at 12 weeks. A community hospital, tertiary care pediatric hospital and a combined adult-pediatric academic health centre enrolled participants from Apr. 1 to Nov. 13, 2020. Predictors of seropositivity were evaluated using a multivariable logistic regression, adjusted for clustering by hospital site. RESULTS: Among the 1062 health care workers participating, the median age was 40 years, and 834 (78.5%) were female. Overall, 57 (5.4%) were seropositive at any time point (2.5% when participants with prior infection confirmed by polymerase chain reaction testing were excluded). Seroprevalence was higher among those who had a known unprotected exposure to a patient with COVID-19 (p < 0.001) and those who had been contacted by public health because of a nonhospital exposure (p = 0.003). Providing direct care to patients with COVID-19 or working on a unit with a COVID-19 outbreak was not associated with higher seroprevalence. In multivariable logistic regression, presence of symptomatic contacts in the household was the strongest predictor of seropositivity (adjusted odds ratio 7.15, 95% confidence interval 5.42-9.41). INTERPRETATION: Health care workers exposed to household risk factors were more likely to be seropositive than those not exposed, highlighting the need to emphasize the importance of public health measures both inside and outside of the hospital.

Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , Ontario/epidemiology , Prospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Tertiary Care Centers
Matern Child Health J ; 25(6): 849-854, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1212904


INTRODUCTION: Ethiopia has made remarkable progress in reducing childhood and neonatal mortality in the last two decades. However, with the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in Ethiopia, disruptions in routine health care pose a significant risk in reversing the gains made in neonatal mortality reduction. METHODS: Using the World Health Organization's health systems building blocks framework we examined the mechanisms by which the pandemic may impact neonatal health. RESULTS: Our analysis suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic and measures taken by the government to control its spread could indirectly set back the gains made in neonatal mortality reduction in Ethiopia by weakening the health system building blocks. On the other hand, by exposing longstanding issues in the health system, the pandemic has pressed health sector stakeholders to urgently test innovative approaches to maintain delivery of essential health care. CONCLUSIONS: We recommend that the Ministry of Health of Ethiopia strike a right balance between the control of the pandemic and ensuring provision of essential neonatal health services. As the pandemic continues to spread in the country, the government should avoid verticalization of pandemic response efforts and adopt a diagonal investment approach to effectively respond to the pandemic as well as build health system resilience to maintain the gains made in the neonatal health.

COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Infant Health , Health Services Accessibility , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Maternal Health Services/organization & administration , Pandemics , Public Health , SARS-CoV-2