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1.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 22218, 2022 Dec 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2186030

ABSTRACT

Perceived discrimination and work impairment are commonly observed in COVID-19 survivors, but their relationship has not been well understood. We aimed to evaluate the role of discrimination in the development of psychological distress and work impairment in COVID-19 survivors. From April 2020 to November 2021, 309 patients were recruited at two designated COVID-19 hospitals in Japan. Participants completed a standardized questionnaire including COVID-19 sequelae, psychological distress, impairments in work performance and perceived discrimination. The majority of participants (62.5%) experienced one or more COVID-19 sequelae. Psychological distress was observed in 36.9% and work impairment in 37.9%. In multivariate logistic regression analyses, COVID-19 sequelae and discrimination were associated with both psychological distress and work impairment. Mediation analysis demonstrated that the direct effect of sequelae on work impairment was non-significant after accounting for psychological distress, suggesting that the effect of sequelae on work impairment was mainly mediated through psychological distress. These findings were replicated in a subgroup analysis limited to patients with mild COVID-19. We conclude that discrimination plays an important role in the development of psychological distress and work impairment, and that both discrimination and psychological distress should be targets of intervention in COVID-19 survivors.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Humans , COVID-19/complications , Survivors/psychology , Japan/epidemiology , Stress, Psychological/psychology
3.
Geriatr Gerontol Int ; 22(11): 982-983, 2022 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2052452

Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
5.
Geriatr Gerontol Int ; 22(10): 832-838, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2019266

ABSTRACT

AIM: The present study aimed to investigate the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic on facility- and home-dwelling people with dementia (PWD). METHODS: This observational study included two anonymous online survey questionnaires to explore the impact of the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan and the long-term impact during the 2 years from the onset of the pandemic. The participants were medical and long-term care facilities representatives for older people (945 facilities in the first survey, 686 in the second), and care managers (751 in the first survey, 241 in the second). A χ2 -test was carried out between the two surveys. RESULTS: For facility-dwelling PWD, activities that stimulate cognitive and physical functioning increased significantly compared with the first wave of the pandemic (P < 0.05). Also, a decline in cognitive and walking functions and falls increased in the second survey compared with the first (P < 0.01). For home-dwelling PWD, the broader impact of the pandemic on support for activities of daily living, social interaction and provision of medical care did not mitigate. The high prevalence of cognitive and physical functional decline in the first survey was similar in the second. CONCLUSIONS: The prolonged COVID-19 pandemic produced changes in the lives of home- and facility-dwelling PWD, with widespread negative consequences for them. Our findings are useful to consider preventive supports to mitigate or avoid functional decline and symptom exacerbation in PWD due to changes in their living environment and the care they receive in the COVID-19 era. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2022; 22: 832-838.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Dementia , Activities of Daily Living , Aged , Dementia/diagnosis , Humans , Pandemics , Surveys and Questionnaires
6.
Int J Disaster Risk Reduct ; 81: 103250, 2022 Oct 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1996226

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection prevention measures have led to a variety of mental health issues. Although several self-care methods have been recommended for those quarantined, evidence regarding how best to support quarantined people experiencing a mental health crisis is limited. In February 2020, the Diamond Princess cruise ship was quarantined in Yokohama port, Japan following a passenger testing positive for COVID-19. We were sent to address the mental health issues as the Disaster Psychiatric Assistance Team (DPAT). In the present study, we examined the acute mental health needs of the passengers and crew collected by the DPAT using the standard Emergency Medical Team daily reporting system. We assessed 206 cases (99 men and 107 women) with generic health issues and 127 cases (39 men and 88 women) with mental health issues. Mental health issues including disaster stress-related symptoms were as frequent as physical health events associated with COVID-19. The most significant mental health issue was anxiety, as an acute psychological reaction to the quarantine situation. Women and crews most frequently needed mental health support. Mental health improved in most clients after brief counseling. Although several passengers experienced suicidal ideation, there were no cases of actual suicide attempts during the quarantine period. This case has been regarded as a well-known public health event at the beginning of the COVID-19 era. In addition to physical health support, disaster mental health support was essential to save lives. Our findings may facilitate responses to future quarantines, accidents, and mental health crises.

7.
BMC Geriatr ; 22(1): 671, 2022 08 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1993331

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A prolonged COVID-19 pandemic could exacerbate the risk of infection and undesirable effects associated with infection control measures of older people with dementia (PWD), and the care burden of families. In this study, we examined the efficacy of care manager-led information provision and practical support for families of older PWD who need care, regarding appropriate infection prevention, prevention of deterioration of cognitive and physical functions, and preparedness in cases of infection spread or infection during the pandemic. METHODS: Fifty-three family members (aged ≥20 years) who were primary caregivers living with older PWD using public long-term care services were enrolled in an one-month randomized controlled trial. This duration was set based on behavior modification theory and with consideration of ethical issue that the most vulnerable people not benefiting from the intervention. The intervention group (IG) received care manager-led information provision and practical support, and the control group (CG) received usual care. Care burden (primary outcome) was measured using the Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview, and secondary outcomes were analyzed using Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ9), the Fear of COVID-19 Scale, and salivary α-amylase activity. Data were collected at baseline and after 1 month. Multiple regression analysis was conducted to examine the efficacy of the intervention. The participants evaluated the care managers' support. RESULTS: The participants were randomly divided into IG (n = 27) and CG (n = 26) groups. After the intervention, compared with the CG, there was a decrease in PHQ-9 (ß = -.202, p = 0.044) and α-amylase activity in saliva (ß = -.265, p = 0.050) in IG. IG also showed an increased fear of COVID-19 after the intervention (ß = .261, p = 0.003). With the care managers' support, 57.2% of the participants felt secure in their daily lives and 53.1% agreed that they were able to practice infection prevention suitable for older PWD. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that the care manager-led intervention may be useful for families of older PWD to enhance behavioral changes in preventing COVID-19 infection and improve their psychological outcomes in the COVID-19 era. TRIAL REGISTRATION: This study was registered on April 2, 2021 (No. UMIN000043820).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Dementia , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Caregivers/psychology , Dementia/epidemiology , Dementia/psychology , Dementia/therapy , Family , Humans , Pandemics , Quality of Life
9.
Geriatr Gerontol Int ; 22(7): 537-539, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1868646
10.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 6039, 2022 04 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1784030

ABSTRACT

This cross-sectional study aimed to investigate the post-acute consequences of COVID-19. We conducted a self-administered questionnaire survey on sequelae, psychological distress (K6), impairments in work performance (WFun), and COVID-19-related experiences of stigma and discrimination in two designated COVID-19 hospitals in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan, between August 2020 and March 2021. The prevalence of sequelae was calculated by age and COVID-19 severity. Factors independently associated with sequelae or psychological distress were identified using logistic regression analysis. Among 127 patients who had recovered from COVID-19, 52.0% had persistent symptoms at a median of 29 days [IQR 23-128] after COVID-19 onset. Among patients with mild COVID-19, 49.5% had sequelae. The most frequent symptoms were olfactory disorders (15.0%), taste disorders (14.2%), and cough (14.2%). Multivariate analysis showed that age was an independent risk factor for sequelae (adjusted odds ratios [AOR] for ≥ 60 years vs. < 40 years 3.63, p = 0.0165). Possible psychological distress was noted in 30.7% (17.9% of males and 45.0% of females). Female sex and the presence of sequelae were independent risk factors for psychological distress. Of all participants, 29.1% had possible impairments in work performance. Experiences of stigma and discrimination were reported by 43.3% of participants. This study revealed the significant impacts of Long COVID on health in local communities. A large-scale, long-term cohort study is desired.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Survivors
11.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 2419, 2022 02 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1684100

ABSTRACT

This study aimed to develop the feasible and effective universal screening strategy of the notable SARS-CoV-2 variants by Sanger Sequencing Strategy and then practically applied it for mass screening in Hiroshima, Japan. A total of 734 samples from COVID-19 confirmed cases in Hiroshima were screened for the notable SARS-CoV-2 variants (B.1.1.7, B.1.351, P.1, B.1.617.2, B.1.617.1, C.37, B.1.1.529, etc.). The targeted spike region is amplified by nested RT-PCR using in-house designed primer set hCoV-Spike-A and standard amplification protocol. Additionally, randomly selected 96 samples were also amplified using primer sets hCoV-Spike-B and hCoV-Spike-C. The negative amplified samples were repeated for second attempt of amplification by volume-up protocol. Thereafter, the amplified products were assigned for Sanger sequencing using corresponding primers. The positive amplification rate of primer set hCoV-Spike-A, hCoV-Spike-B and hCoV-Spike-C were 87.3%, 83.3% and 93.8% respectively for standard protocol and increased to 99.6%, 95.8% and 96.9% after second attempt by volume-up protocol. The readiness of genome sequences was 96.9%, 100% and 100% respectively. Among 48 mutant isolates, 26 were B.1.1.7 (Alpha), 7 were E484K single mutation and the rest were other types of mutation. Moreover, 5 cluster cases with single mutation at N501S were firstly reported in Hiroshima. This study indicates the reliability and effectiveness of Sanger sequencing to screen large number of samples for the notable SARS-CoV-2 variants. Compared to the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), our method introduces the feasible, universally applicable, and practically useful tool for identification of the emerging variants with less expensive and time consuming especially in those countries where the NGS is not practically available. Our method allows not only to identify the pre-existing variants but also to examine other rare type of mutation or newly emerged variants and is crucial for prevention and control of pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Mass Screening/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sequence Analysis, DNA/methods , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Amino Acid Sequence , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Feasibility Studies , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing/methods , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
12.
Prehosp Disaster Med ; 37(1): 142-144, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1616894

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Japan recently experienced two major heavy rain disasters: the West Japan heavy rain disaster in July 2018 and the Kumamoto heavy rain disaster in July 2020. Between the occurrences of these two disasters, Japan began experiencing the wave of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, providing a unique opportunity to compare the incidence of acute respiratory infection (ARI) between the two disaster responses under distinct conditions. SOURCES FOR INFORMATION: The data were collected by using the standard disaster medical reporting system used in Japan, so-called the Japan-Surveillance in Post-Extreme Emergencies and Disasters (J-SPEED), which reports number and types of patients treated by Emergency Medical Teams (EMTs). Data for ARI were extracted from daily aggregated data on the J-SPEED form and the frequency of ARI in two disasters was compared. OBSERVATION: Acute respiratory infection in the West Japan heavy rain that occurred in the absence of COVID-19 and in the Kumamoto heavy rain that occurred in the presence of COVID-19 were responsible for 5.4% and 1.2% of the total consultation, respectively (P <.001). ANALYSIS OF OBSERVATION AND CONCLUSION: Between the occurrence of these two disasters, Japan implemented COVID-19 preventive measures on a personal and organizational level, such as wearing masks, disinfecting hands, maintaining social distance, improving room ventilation, and screening people who entered evacuation centers by using hygiene management checklists. By following the basic prevention measures stated above, ARI can be significantly reduced during a disaster.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Disasters , Respiratory Tract Infections , Humans , Incidence , Japan/epidemiology , Pandemics , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
13.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(17)2021 08 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1390601

ABSTRACT

With the widespread and increasing number of cases of Coronavirus Disease (2019) globally, countries have been taking preventive measures against this pandemic. However, there is no universal agreement across cultures on whether wearing face masks are an effective physical intervention against disease transmission. We investigated the relationship between mask wearing and COVID-19 among close contacts of COVID-19 patients in the Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan. In the Hiroshima Prefecture, a COVID-19 form adapted from the reporting form, "Japanese Surveillance in Post-Extreme Emergencies and Disasters", was developed to collect data from COVID-19 patients' close contacts under active epidemiological surveillance at Public Health Centers. The relative risk of COVID-19 for mask users versus non-mask users was calculated. A total of 820 interviewees were included in the analysis and 53.3% of them responded that they wore masks. Non-mask users were infected at a rate of 16.4%, while mask users were infected at a rate of 7.1%. Those who wore masks were infected at a rate of 0.4 times that of those who did not wear masks. (RR = 0.4, 95%CI = 0.3-0.6; Adjusted RR = 0.6, 95%CI = 0.3-0.9). These findings implied that COVID-19 could be avoided to a certain degree by wearing a mask.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Masks , Pandemics , Public Health , SARS-CoV-2
15.
PLoS One ; 16(2): e0246383, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067425

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In this study, we performed molecular characterization of SARS-CoV-2 strains in Hiroshima and its mutation pattern between the first and second waves of the outbreak. METHOD: A total of 55 nasal swab samples from the first wave in Hiroshima and 13 from the second wave were examined quantitatively by RT-qPCR and qualitatively by nested PCR using specific primers. Four samples from each wave underwent next-generation sequencing and phylogenetic tree analysis including controls and all sequences retrieved in Japan from GISAID and GenBank. Subsequently, mutations were examined. RESULTS: Viral load ranged 7.85 × 101-1.42 × 108 copies/ml. Of 68 samples, one was Asian type-O, 65 were European type-GR, and 2 were undetectable. Phylogenetic tree analysis indicated that Japan was infected with various Asian strains (L, S, V, O) from January through April. By second week of March, European strains (G, GH, GR) had appeared, and GR strains became predominant after mid-March. The first case in Hiroshima was classified as Asian strain O, and the rest were GR strains. Then, second wave of GR strains appeared independently with 11-15 base mutations. Comparing the first- and second-wave GR strains, mutation rate was 1.17-1.36 × 10-3 base substitutions per site per year; in addition, amino acid changes occurred at S1361P and P3371S in ORF1a, A314V in ORF1b, and P151L in N. All seven GR strains were D614G variants with R202K and G203R mutations in N. A single-nucleotide insertion in ORF8 that causes a defect in ORF8 protein was found in one isolate (S66) from the second wave. CONCLUSION: Our findings reveal the evolutionary hierarchy of SARS-CoV-2 in Japan. The predominant D614G variants and a new form of ORF8 deletion in Hiroshima provide the clue for role of viral factor in local outbreaks of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Female , Genome, Viral , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Young Adult
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