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1.
Int J Infect Dis ; 122: 420-426, 2022 Jun 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2015419

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: We compared the characteristics and outcomes of vaccinated and nonvaccinated patients hospitalized with COVID-19. DESIGN: We analyzed patients hospitalized in a COVID hub during three one-month periods: (i) October 15, 2020-November 15, 2020 (prevaccination peak); (ii) October 15, 2021-November 15, 2021 (Delta wave); (iii) December 15, 2021-January 15, 2022 (Omicron wave). To define the epidemiologic context, SARS-CoV-2 infection in healthcare workers was analyzed. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 infection incidence in healthcare workers was 146 cases per 1000 persons in 2020 (prevaccination) and 67 in 2021 (postvaccination, when the Omicron variant caused most infections). There were 420 hospitalized patients in the prevaccination period, 51 during the Delta wave (52.1% vaccinated) and 165 during the Omicron wave (52.9% vaccinated). During the Delta wave, a significantly higher number of nonvaccinated (29.2%) than vaccinated patients (3.7%) were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) (p = 0.019). Nonvaccinated patients were younger and had a lower rate of concomitant medical conditions (53.2% vs 83.7%; p < 0.001) during the Omicron wave when 80% of patients admitted to ICU and all those who died were still infected by the Delta variant. CONCLUSIONS: Vaccine effectiveness in fragile individuals appears to be lower because of a faster immunity decline. However, the Omicron variant seems to cause less severe COVID-19.

2.
Biomedicines ; 10(8):1993, 2022.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1987652

ABSTRACT

The use of micronutrients such as vitamin D could improve the response to viral vaccines, particularly in immunosuppressed and immunosenescent subjects. Here, we analysed the association between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) levels and the immune response elicited by the BNT162b2 vaccine in a cohort of 101 healthcare workers naïve for SARS-CoV-2 infection. We observed no significant differences in anti-spike (S) IgG and T-cell responses according to the 25OHD status at baseline. However, significant correlations between the 25OHD concentration at baseline and (i) the anti-S response (p < 0.020) and (ii) the neutralizing antibody (NT) titre (p = 0.040) at six months after the second dose were detected. We concluded that adequate levels of vitamin D may improve the immune response to mRNA vaccines such as BNT162b2, and that further larger studies are warranted in order to confirm these preliminary observations.

3.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(13)2022 07 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1917480

ABSTRACT

During the two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 400 million cases all over the world have been identified. Health care workers were among the first to deal with this virus and consequently a high incidence of infection was reported in this population. The aim of the survey was to investigate health care workers' (HCWs) clinical characteristics and potential risk factors associated with the SARS-CoV-2 infection in a referral hospital in Northern Italy after the first and second waves of the pandemic. We administered a questionnaire during the flu vaccination campaign that took place at the end of 2020; among 1386 vaccinated HCWs, data was collected and analyzed for 1065 subjects. 182 HCWs (17%) declared that they had tested positive on at least a molecular or a serological test since the beginning of the pandemic. Comparing the infected vs. not infected HCWs, median age, BMI, smoking habit, presence of hypertension or other comorbidities were not significantly different, while having worked in a COVID ward was associated with the infection (ORadj = 1.54, 95% CI: 1.07-2.20). Respondents declared that more than 70% of contacts occurred in the hospital with patients or colleagues, while about 15% in domestic environments. Among the infected, the most reported symptoms were fever (62.1%), asthenia (60.3%), anosmia/ageusia (53.5%), arthralgia/myalgia (48.3%), headache or other neurological symptoms (46.6%), cough (43.1%) and flu-like syndrome (41.4%). The percentage of subjects who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2 seems to be higher in HCWs than in the general population; hence, in hospitals, protective measures and preventive strategies to avoid the spreading of the contagion remain crucial.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
4.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-308676

ABSTRACT

Purpose: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the health care workers (HCWs) at the frontline have been largely exposed to infected patients, running an high risk of being infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This study investigates the epidemiological, clinical and lifestyles characteristics that might play roles in the susceptibility of HCWs to COVID-19 in a hit Italian hospital. Methods: Demographic, lifestyle, work-related and comorbidities data of 1447 HCWs which underwent a nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV-2 were retrospectively collected. For the 164 HCWs positive for SARS-CoV-2, data about safety in the workplace, symptoms and clinical course of COVID-19 were also collected. Cumulative incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was estimated. Risk factors for SARS-CoV-2 infection were assessed using a multivariable Poisson regression. Results: The cumulative incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection among the screened HCWs was 11.33 (9.72-13.21). Working in a COVID-19 ward, being a former smoker (vs being a person who never smoked) and BMI were positively associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection, whereas being a current smoker was negatively associated with this variable. Conclusions: Assuming an equal accessibility and proper use of PPE of all the HCWs of our Hospital, the great and more prolonged contact with COVID-19 patients remains the crucial risk factor for SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, increased and particular care needs to be focused specifically on the most exposed HCWs groups, which should be safeguarded. Furthermore, in order to limit the risk of asymptomatic spread of SARS-CoV-2 infection, the HCWs mild symptoms of COVID-19 should be considered when evaluating the potential benefits of universal staff testing

5.
N Engl J Med ; 386(2): 199-200, 2022 01 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574558
6.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-295856

ABSTRACT

Vaccine breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infection has been monitored in 3720 healthcare workers receiving 2 doses of BNT162b2. SARS-CoV-2 infection is detected in 33 subjects, with a 100-day cumulative incidence of 0.93%. Vaccine protection against acquisition of SARS-CoV-2 infection is 83% (95%CI: 58-93%) in the overall population and 93% (95%CI: 69-99%) in SARS-CoV-2-experienced subjects, when compared with a non-vaccinated control group from the same Institution, in which SARS-CoV-2 infection occurs in 20/346 subjects (100-day cumulative incidence: 5.78%). The infection is symptomatic in 16 (48%) vaccinated subjects vs 17 (85%) controls (p=0.001). All analyzed patients, in whom the amount of viral RNA was sufficient for genome sequencing, results infected by the alpha variant. Antibody and T-cell responses are not reduced in subjects with breakthrough infection. Evidence of virus transmission, determined by contact tracing, is observed in two (6.1%) cases. This real-world data support the protective effect of BNT162b2 vaccine. A triple antigenic exposure, such as two-dose vaccine schedule in experienced subjects, may confer a higher protection.

8.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 6032, 2021 10 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1469967

ABSTRACT

Vaccine breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infection has been monitored in 3720 healthcare workers receiving 2 doses of BNT162b2. SARS-CoV-2 infection is detected in 33 subjects, with a 100-day cumulative incidence of 0.93%. Vaccine protection against acquisition of SARS-CoV-2 infection is 83% (95%CI: 58-93%) in the overall population and 93% (95%CI: 69-99%) in SARS-CoV-2-experienced subjects, when compared with a non-vaccinated control group from the same Institution, in which SARS-CoV-2 infection occurs in 20/346 subjects (100-day cumulative incidence: 5.78%). The infection is symptomatic in 16 (48%) vaccinated subjects vs 17 (85%) controls (p = 0.01). All analyzed patients, in whom the amount of viral RNA was sufficient for genome sequencing, results infected by the alpha variant. Antibody and T-cell responses are not reduced in subjects with breakthrough infection. Evidence of virus transmission, determined by contact tracing, is observed in two (6.1%) cases. This real-world data support the protective effect of BNT162b2 vaccine. A triple antigenic exposure, such as two-dose vaccine schedule in experienced subjects, may confer a higher protection.


Subject(s)
Asymptomatic Infections/epidemiology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/statistics & numerical data , Case-Control Studies , Female , Humans , Immunization Schedule , Incidence , Male , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Severity of Illness Index
9.
Int J Infect Dis ; 109: 199-202, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385715

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection induced by SARS-CoV-2 anti-S1 and anti-S2 IgG antibody positivity resulting from natural infection was evaluated. METHODS: The frequency of SARS-CoV-2 infection (as determined by virus RNA detection) was evaluated in a group of 1,460 seropositive and a control group of 8,150 seronegative healthcare workers in three Centres of Northern Italy in the period June-November 2020. Neutralizing serum titers were analyzed in seropositive subjects with or without secondary SARS-CoV-2 infection. RESULTS: During the 6-month survey, 1.78% seropositive subjects developed secondary SARS-CoV-2 infection while 6.63% seronegative controls developed primary infection (odds ratio: 0.26; 95% confidence interval: 0.17-0.38). Secondary infection was associated with low or absent serum neutralizing titer (p<0.01) and was mildly symptomatic in 45.8% cases vs 71.4% symptomatic primary infections (odds ratio: 0.34; 95% confidence interval: 0.16-0.78). CONCLUSIONS: Immunity from natural infection appears protective from secondary infection; therefore, vaccination of seronegative subjects might be prioritized.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coinfection , Antibodies, Viral , Health Personnel , Humans , Incidence , Italy/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
12.
J Public Health (Oxf) ; 43(1): 26-34, 2021 04 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-900472

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the health care workers (HCWs) at the frontline have been largely exposed to infected patients, running a high risk of being infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus.Since limiting transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in health care setting is crucial to avoid the community spread of SARS-CoV-2, we want to share our experience as an early hit hospital where standard infection control practices have been conscientiously applied and effective. We believe that our example, as first and hardest hit country, might be a warning and aid not only for those who have been hit later, but also for a second fearful wave of contagion. In addition, we want to offer an insight on modifiable risk factors for HWs-related infection. METHODS: Demographic, lifestyle, work-related and comorbidities data of 1447 HCWs, which underwent a nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV-2, were retrospectively collected. For the 164 HCWs positive for SARS-CoV-2, data about safety in the workplace, symptoms and clinical course of COVID-19 were also collected. Cumulative incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was estimated. Risk factors for SARS-CoV-2 infection were assessed using a multivariable Poisson regression. RESULTS: The cumulative incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection among the screened HCWs was 11.33% (9.72-13.21). Working in a COVID-19 ward, being a former smoker (versus being a person who never smoked) and BMI was positively associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection, whereas being a current smoker was negatively associated with this variable. CONCLUSIONS: Assuming an equal accessibility and proper use of personal protective equipment of all the HCWs of our Hospital, the great and more prolonged contact with COVID-19 patients remains the crucial risk factor for SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, increased and particular care needs to be focused specifically on the most exposed HCWs groups, which should be safeguarded. Furthermore, in order to limit the risk of asymptomatic spread of SARS-CoV-2 infection, the HCWs mild symptoms of COVID-19 should be considered when evaluating the potential benefits of universal staff testing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Personnel, Hospital , Adult , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , Female , Humans , Incidence , Infection Control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Multivariate Analysis , Referral and Consultation , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Smoking
13.
Acta Biomed ; 91(11-S): e2020004, 2020 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-809554

ABSTRACT

Italy is one of the most exposed countries worldwide to COVID-19, and Lombardy is the most affected region in Italy. In this context, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo in Pavia, one of the largest University hospitals in the region, has been involved in the management of the outbreak since its inception. Immediately after the communication of the first Italian COVID-19+ patient, the Pediatric Unit has been completely reorganized to face the approaching outbreak. The optimization of the Pediatric Unit resources for COVID-19 emergency is reported as an example to safely preserve health activity during the pandemic.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Disease Management , Emergency Service, Hospital/organization & administration , Intensive Care Units, Pediatric/organization & administration , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Child , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , SARS-CoV-2
15.
Microorganisms ; 8(7)2020 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-635090

ABSTRACT

The role of immunosuppression in SARS-CoV-2-related disease (COVID-19) is a matter of debate. We here describe the course and the outcome of COVID-19 in a cohort of patients undergoing treatment with calcineurin inhibitors. In this monocentric cohort study, data were collected from the COVID-19 outbreak in Italy up to April 28th 2020. Patients were followed at our hospital for solid organ transplantation or systemic rheumatic disorders (RMDs) and were on calcineurin inhibitor (CNI)-based therapy. Selected patients were referred from the North of Italy. The aim of our study was to evaluate the clinical course of COVID-19 in this setting. We evaluated 385 consecutive patients (220 males, 57%; median age 61 years, IQR 48-69); 331 (86%) received solid organ transplantation and 54 (14%) had a RMD. CNIs were the only immunosuppressant administered in 47 patients (12%). We identified 14 (4%) COVID-19 patients, all transplanted, mainly presenting with fever (86%) and diarrhea (71%). Twelve patients were hospitalized and two of them died, both with severe comorbidities. No patients developed acute respiratory distress syndrome or infectious complications. The surviving 10 patients are now fully recovered. The clinical course of COVID-19 patients on CNIs is generally mild, and the risk of superinfection seems low.

16.
Intern Emerg Med ; 15(5): 825-833, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-548983

ABSTRACT

Since December 2019, the world has been facing the life-threatening disease, named Coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19), recognized as a pandemic by the World Health Organization. The response of the Emergency Medicine network, integrating "out-of-hospital" and "hospital" activation, is crucial whenever the health system has to face a medical emergency, being caused by natural or human-derived disasters as well as by a rapidly spreading epidemic outbreak. We here report the Pavia Emergency Medicine network response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The "out-of-hospital" response was analysed in terms of calls, rescues and missions, whereas the "hospital" response was detailed as number of admitted patients and subsequent hospitalisation or discharge. The data in the first 5 weeks of the Covid-19 outbreak (February 21-March 26, 2020) were compared with a reference time window referring to the previous 5 weeks (January 17-February 20, 2020) and with the corresponding historical average data from the previous 5 years (February 21-March 26). Since February 21, 2020, a sudden and sustained increase in the calls to the AREU 112 system was noted (+ 440%). After 5 weeks, the number of calls and missions was still higher as compared to both the reference pre-Covid-19 period (+ 48% and + 10%, respectively) and the historical control (+ 53% and + 22%, respectively). Owing to the overflow from the neighbouring hospitals, which rapidly became overwhelmed and had to temporarily close patient access, the population served by the Pavia system more than doubled (from 547.251 to 1.135.977 inhabitants, + 108%). To minimize the possibility of intra-hospital spreading of the infection, a separate "Emergency Department-Infective Disease" was created, which evaluated 1241 patients with suspected infection (38% of total ED admissions). Out of these 1241 patients, 58.0% (n = 720) were admitted in general wards (n = 629) or intensive care unit (n = 91). To allow this massive number of admissions, the hospital reshaped many general ward Units, which became Covid-19 Units (up to 270 beds) and increased the intensive care unit beds from 32 to 60. In the setting of a long-standing continuing emergency like the present Covid-19 outbreak, the integration, interaction and team work of the "out-of-hospital" and "in-hospital" systems have a pivotal role. The present study reports how the rapid and coordinated reorganization of both might help in facing such a disaster. AREU-112 and the Emergency Department should be ready to finely tune their usual cooperation to respond to a sudden and overwhelming increase in the healthcare needs brought about by a pandemia like the current one. This lesson should shape and reinforce the future.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Emergency Medical Services/organization & administration , Emergency Service, Hospital/organization & administration , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Intensive Care Units/organization & administration , Italy/epidemiology , Pandemics , Patient Admission/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology
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