INTRODUCTION: Our faculty used one long case (LC) and three short cases for the clinical component of the final professional examinations. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the LC had to be replaced with scenario-based clinical examination (SBCE) due to the impracticability of using recently hospitalised patients. While keeping the short case component as usual, the LC had to be replaced with SBCE in 2020 for the first time at a short notice. To evaluate the positive and negative aspects of SBCE and LC to determine the feasibility of replacing LC with SBCE in future examinations. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We compared the LC scores of three previous years with those of the SBCE and studied the feedback of the three stakeholders: students, examiners, and simulated patients (SPs), regarding their experience with SBCE and the suitability of SBCE as an alternative for LC in future examinations. RESULTS: The SBCE scores were higher than those of the LC. Most of the examiners and students were not in favour of SBCE replacing LC, as such. The SPs were more positive about the proposition. The comments of the three stakeholders brought out the plus and minus points of LC and SBCE, which prompted our proposals to make SBCE more practical for future examinations. CONCLUSION: Having analysed the feedback of the stakeholders, and the positive and negative aspects of LC and SBCE, it was evident that SBCE needed improvements. We have proposed eight modifications to SBCE to make it a viable alternative for LC.
Subject(s)COVID-19 , Educational Measurement , Humans , Pandemics , Students , Feasibility Studies
Confronted with an emerging infectious disease, the medical community faced relevant concerns regarding the performance of autopsies of COVID-19 deceased at the beginning of the pandemic. This attitude has changed, and autopsies are now recognized as indispensable tools for elucidating COVID-19; despite this, the true risk of infection for autopsy staff is still debated. To elucidate the rate of SARS-CoV-2 contamination in personal protective equipment (PPE), swabs were taken at nine locations of the PPE of one physician and an assistant each from 11 full autopsies performed at four different centers. Further samples were obtained for three minimally invasive autopsies (MIA) conducted at a fifth center. Lung/bronchus swabs of the deceased served as positive controls. SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected by RT-qPCR. In 9/11 full autopsies PPE samples were tested RNA positive with PCR, in total 21% of all PPE samples taken. The main contaminated parts of the PPE were the gloves (64% positive), the aprons (50% positive), and the upper sides of shoes (36% positive) while for example the fronts of safety goggles were only positive in 4.5% of the samples and all face masks were negative. In MIA, viral RNA was observed in one sample from a glove, but not in other swabs. Infectious virus isolation in cell culture was performed in RNA positive swabs from full autopsies. Of all RNA positive PPE samples, 21% of the glove samples were positive for infectious virus taken in 3/11 full autopsies. In conclusion, in >80% of autopsies, PPE was contaminated with viral RNA. In >25% of autopsies, PPE was found to be even contaminated with infectious virus, signifying a potential risk of infection among autopsy staff. Adequate PPE and hygiene measures, including appropriate waste deposition, are therefore mandatory to enable safe work environment.
BACKGROUND: Vaccination is an effective way to curtail the burden of COVID-19 in which success depends on a high acceptance of the vaccine. However, addressing concerns among vaccine-hesitant individuals is essential to avoid failure of the immunisation programme. This study sought to assess the concerns and acceptance rates regarding the COVID-19 vaccine among Malaysians. METHODS: An online questionnaire was distributed to 1411 respondents via a snowball sampling method among Malaysians aged 18 years and above. RESULTS: The majority of the respondents were young adults (40.7%), female (62.8%), Malay (63.8%), Muslim (72.3%), married (52.9%), with tertiary education (86.8%) and without medical illness (85%). Social media (97.4%) was the primary source of information regarding COVID-19. The overall acceptance rate was high (83.3%), with the lowest rates among the elderly aged 60 years and above (63.4%) and pensioners (64.6%). Hesitance was caused by concerns regarding side effects (95.8%), safety (84.7%), lack of information (80.9%), effectiveness (63.6%) and religious (20.8%) and cultural factors related to the COVID-19 vaccine (6.8%). Respondents with diabetes mellitus (24.7%) and hypercholesterolemia (23%) were more hesitant to accept the COVID-19 vaccine, at 16.1 and 15.8%, respectively. Predictors of COVID-19 vaccine hesitance were age, religion, and current residence. CONCLUSIONS: The results indicate a high rate of acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine among Malaysians. Thus, the Malaysian government and other related agencies should increase their campaign and prepare to implement the COVID-19 mass immunisation programme among Malaysians. However, despite the high acceptance rate, it remains important to address concerns among hesitant individuals by building trust in vaccine safety and effectiveness through adequate information regarding the vaccine.