Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 20 de 23
Filter
1.
Epidemics ; 40: 100601, 2022 Jun 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1895034

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: After a rapid upsurge of COVID-19 cases in Italy during the fall of 2020, the government introduced a three-tiered restriction system aimed at increasing physical distancing. The Ministry of Health, after periodic epidemiological risk assessments, assigned a tier to each of the 21 Italian regions and autonomous provinces. It is still unclear to what extent these different sets of measures altered the number of daily interactions and the social mixing patterns. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We conducted a survey between July 2020 and March 2021 to monitor changes in social contact patterns among individuals in the metropolitan city of Milan, Italy, which was hardly hit by the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The number of daily contacts during periods characterized by different levels of restrictions was analyzed through negative binomial regression models and age-specific contact matrices were estimated under the different tiers of restrictions. By relying on the empirically estimated mixing patterns, we quantified relative changes in SARS-CoV-2 transmission potential associated with the different tiers. As tighter restrictions were implemented during the fall of 2020, a progressive reduction in the mean number of daily contacts recorded by study participants was observed: from 15.9 % under mild restrictions (yellow tier), to 41.8 % under strong restrictions (red tier). Higher restrictions levels were also found to increase the relative contribution of contacts occurring within the household. The SARS-CoV-2 reproduction number was estimated to decrease by 17.1 % (95 %CI: 1.5-30.1), 25.1 % (95 %CI: 13.0-36.0) and 44.7 % (95 %CI: 33.9-53.0) under the yellow, orange, and red tiers, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Our results give an important quantification of the expected contribution of different restriction levels in shaping social contacts and decreasing the transmission potential of SARS-CoV-2. These estimates can find an operational use in anticipating the effect that the implementation of these tiered restriction can have on SARS-CoV-2 reproduction number under an evolving epidemiological situation.

2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-335971

ABSTRACT

Parental hesitancy poses a serious threat to the success of the COVID-19 childhood vaccination campaign. We investigate whether adults' opinions on childhood vaccination can be influenced via two survey experiments in Italy (n=3,524 participants) and the UK (n=3,066 participants). Respondents were randomly assigned to: a “risk treatment” that highlighted the potential risks of COVID-19 to a child, a “herd immunity treatment” that emphasized the community benefits of pediatric vaccination, or a control message. Participants’ probability of supporting COVID-19 childhood vaccination was then assessed on a 0-100 scale. We find that the “risk treatment” reduced the proportion of Italian parents strongly against vaccination by up to 29.6%, while increasing the proportion of neutral parents by up to 45.0%. The “herd immunity treatment”, instead, was only effective among non-parents, resulting in a lower proportion of individuals against pediatric vaccination and a higher proportion of individuals in favor (both shifted by around 20%).

3.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-324917

ABSTRACT

Solid estimates describing the clinical course of SARS-CoV-2 infections are still lacking due to under-ascertainment of asymptomatic and mild-disease cases. In this work, we quantify age-specific probabilities of transitions between stages defining the natural history of SARS-CoV-2 infection from 1,965 SARS-CoV-2 positive individuals identified in Italy between March and April 2020 among contacts of confirmed cases. Infected contacts of cases were confirmed via RT-PCR tests as part of contact tracing activities or retrospectively via IgG serological tests and followed-up for symptoms and clinical outcomes. In addition, we provide estimates of time intervals between key events defining the clinical progression of cases as obtained from a larger sample, consisting of 95,371 infections ascertained between February and July 2020. We found that being older than 60 years of age was associated with a 39.9% (95%CI: 36.2-43.6%) likelihood of developing respiratory symptoms or fever >= 37.5 °C after SARS-CoV-2 infection;the 22.3% (95%CI: 19.3-25.6%) of the infections in this age group required hospital care and the 1% (95%CI: 0.4-2.1%) were admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU). The corresponding proportions in individuals younger than 60 years were estimated at 27.9% (95%CI: 25.4-30.4%), 8.8% (95%CI: 7.3-10.5%) and 0.4% (95%CI: 0.1-0.9%), respectively. The infection fatality ratio (IFR) ranged from 0.2% (95%CI: 0.0-0.6%) in individuals younger than 60 years to 12.3% (95%CI: 6.9-19.7%) for those aged 80 years or more;the case fatality ratio (CFR) in these two age classes was 0.6% (95%CI: 0.1-2%) and 19.2% (95% CI: 10.9-30.1%), respectively. The median length of stay in hospital was 10 (IQR 3-21) days;the length of stay in ICU was 11 (IQR 6-19) days. The obtained estimates could be instrumental to refine mathematical modeling work supporting public health decisions.

4.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-319211

ABSTRACT

We quantified the probability of developing symptoms (respiratory or fever \geq 37.5 °C) and critical disease (requiring intensive care or resulting in death) of SARS-CoV-2 positive subjects. 5,484 contacts of SARS-CoV-2 index cases detected in Lombardy, Italy were analyzed, and positive subjects were ascertained via nasal swabs and serological assays. 73.9% of all infected individuals aged less than 60 years did not develop symptoms (95% confidence interval: 71.8-75.9%). The risk of symptoms increased with age. 6.6% of infected subjects older than 60 years had critical disease, with males at significantly higher risk.

5.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-319210

ABSTRACT

We analyzed 5,484 close contacts of COVID-19 cases from Italy, all of them tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection. We found an infection fatality ratio of 2.2% (95%CI 1.69-2.81%) and identified male sex, age >70 years, cardiovascular comorbidities, and infection early in the epidemics as risk factors for death.

6.
Am J Epidemiol ; 191(1): 137-146, 2022 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621545

ABSTRACT

During the spring of 2020, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) epidemic caused an unprecedented demand for intensive-care resources in the Lombardy region of Italy. Using data on 43,538 hospitalized patients admitted between February 21 and July 12, 2020, we evaluated variations in intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and mortality over the course of 3 periods: the early phase of the pandemic (February 21-March 13), the period of highest pressure on the health-care system (March 14-April 25, when numbers of COVID-19 patients exceeded prepandemic ICU bed capacity), and the declining phase (April 26-July 12). Compared with the early phase, patients aged 70 years or more were less often admitted to an ICU during the period of highest pressure on the health-care system (odds ratio (OR) = 0.47, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.41, 0.54), with longer ICU delays (incidence rate ratio = 1.82, 95% CI: 1.52, 2.18) and lower chances of dying in the ICU (OR = 0.47, 95% CI: 0.34, 0.64). Patients under 56 years of age had more limited changes in the probability of (OR = 0.65, 95% CI: 0.56, 0.76) and delay to (incidence rate ratio = 1.16, 95% CI: 0.95, 1.42) ICU admission and increased mortality (OR = 1.43, 95% CI: 1.00, 2.07). In the declining phase, all quantities decreased for all age groups. These patterns may suggest that limited health-care resources during the peak phase of the epidemic in Lombardy forced a shift in ICU admission criteria to prioritize patients with higher chances of survival.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Delivery of Health Care/statistics & numerical data , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/mortality , Comorbidity , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors , Time Factors
7.
Elife ; 102021 11 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1534521

ABSTRACT

Background: Transmission of respiratory pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2 depends on patterns of contact and mixing across populations. Understanding this is crucial to predict pathogen spread and the effectiveness of control efforts. Most analyses of contact patterns to date have focused on high-income settings. Methods: Here, we conduct a systematic review and individual-participant meta-analysis of surveys carried out in low- and middle-income countries and compare patterns of contact in these settings to surveys previously carried out in high-income countries. Using individual-level data from 28,503 participants and 413,069 contacts across 27 surveys, we explored how contact characteristics (number, location, duration, and whether physical) vary across income settings. Results: Contact rates declined with age in high- and upper-middle-income settings, but not in low-income settings, where adults aged 65+ made similar numbers of contacts as younger individuals and mixed with all age groups. Across all settings, increasing household size was a key determinant of contact frequency and characteristics, with low-income settings characterised by the largest, most intergenerational households. A higher proportion of contacts were made at home in low-income settings, and work/school contacts were more frequent in high-income strata. We also observed contrasting effects of gender across income strata on the frequency, duration, and type of contacts individuals made. Conclusions: These differences in contact patterns between settings have material consequences for both spread of respiratory pathogens and the effectiveness of different non-pharmaceutical interventions. Funding: This work is primarily being funded by joint Centre funding from the UK Medical Research Council and DFID (MR/R015600/1).


Infectious diseases, particularly those caused by airborne pathogens like SARS-CoV-2, spread by social contact, and understanding how people mix is critical in controlling outbreaks. To explore these patterns, researchers typically carry out large contact surveys. Participants are asked for personal information (such as gender, age and occupation), as well as details of recent social contacts, usually those that happened in the last 24 hours. This information includes, the age and gender of the contact, where the interaction happened, how long it lasted, and whether it involved physical touch. These kinds of surveys help scientists to predict how infectious diseases might spread. But there is a problem: most of the data come from high-income countries, and there is evidence to suggest that social contact patterns differ between places. Therefore, data from these countries might not be useful for predicting how infections spread in lower-income regions. Here, Mousa et al. have collected and combined data from 27 contact surveys carried out before the COVID-19 pandemic to see how baseline social interactions vary between high- and lower-income settings. The comparison revealed that, in higher-income countries, the number of daily contacts people made decreased with age. But, in lower-income countries, younger and older individuals made similar numbers of contacts and mixed with all age groups. In higher-income countries, more contacts happened at work or school, while in low-income settings, more interactions happened at home and people were also more likely to live in larger, intergenerational households. Mousa et al. also found that gender affected how long contacts lasted and whether they involved physical contact, both of which are key risk factors for transmitting airborne pathogens. These findings can help researchers to predict how infectious diseases might spread in different settings. They can also be used to assess how effective non-medical restrictions, like shielding of the elderly and workplace closures, will be at reducing transmissions in different parts of the world.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Disease Transmission, Infectious , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Young Adult
8.
Epidemics ; 37: 100528, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1520903

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In the night of February 20, 2020, the first epidemic of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outside Asia was uncovered by the identification of its first patient in Lombardy region, Italy. In the following weeks, Lombardy experienced a sudden increase in the number of ascertained infections and strict measures were imposed to contain the epidemic spread. METHODS: We analyzed official records of cases occurred in Lombardy to characterize the epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 during the early phase of the outbreak. A line list of laboratory-confirmed cases was set up and later retrospectively consolidated, using standardized interviews to ascertained cases and their close contacts. We provide estimates of the serial interval, of the basic reproduction number, and of the temporal variation of the net reproduction number of SARS-CoV-2. RESULTS: Epidemiological investigations detected over 500 cases (median age: 69, IQR: 57-78) before the first COVID-19 diagnosed patient (February 20, 2020), and suggested that SARS-CoV-2 was already circulating in at least 222 out of 1506 (14.7%) municipalities with sustained transmission across all the Lombardy provinces. We estimated the mean serial interval to be 6.6 days (95% CrI, 0.7-19). Our estimates of the basic reproduction number range from 2.6 in Pavia (95% CI, 2.1-3.2) to 3.3 in Milan (95% CI, 2.9-3.8). A decreasing trend in the net reproduction number was observed following the detection of the first case. CONCLUSIONS: At the time of first case notification, COVID-19 was already widespread in the entire Lombardy region. This may explain the large number of critical cases experienced by this region in a very short timeframe. The slight decrease of the reproduction number observed in the early days after February 20, 2020 might be due to increased population awareness and early interventions implemented before the regional lockdown imposed on March 8, 2020.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Aged , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
9.
Epidemics ; 37: 100530, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1517154

ABSTRACT

Solid estimates describing the clinical course of SARS-CoV-2 infections are still lacking due to under-ascertainment of asymptomatic and mild-disease cases. In this work, we quantify age-specific probabilities of transitions between stages defining the natural history of SARS-CoV-2 infection from 1965 SARS-CoV-2 positive individuals identified in Italy between March and April 2020 among contacts of confirmed cases. Infected contacts of cases were confirmed via RT-PCR tests as part of contact tracing activities or retrospectively via IgG serological tests and followed-up for symptoms and clinical outcomes. In addition, we provide estimates of time intervals between key events defining the clinical progression of cases as obtained from a larger sample, consisting of 95,371 infections ascertained between February and July 2020. We found that being older than 60 years of age was associated with a 39.9% (95%CI: 36.2-43.6%) likelihood of developing respiratory symptoms or fever ≥ 37.5 °C after SARS-CoV-2 infection; the 22.3% (95%CI: 19.3-25.6%) of the infections in this age group required hospital care and the 1% (95%CI: 0.4-2.1%) were admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU). The corresponding proportions in individuals younger than 60 years were estimated at 27.9% (95%CI: 25.4-30.4%), 8.8% (95%CI: 7.3-10.5%) and 0.4% (95%CI: 0.1-0.9%), respectively. The infection fatality ratio (IFR) ranged from 0.2% (95%CI: 0.0-0.6%) in individuals younger than 60 years to 12.3% (95%CI: 6.9-19.7%) for those aged 80 years or more; the case fatality ratio (CFR) in these two age classes was 0.6% (95%CI: 0.1-2%) and 19.2% (95%CI: 10.9-30.1%), respectively. The median length of stay in hospital was 10 (IQR: 3-21) days; the length of stay in ICU was 11 (IQR: 6-19) days. The obtained estimates provide insights into the epidemiology of COVID-19 and could be instrumental to refine mathematical modeling work supporting public health decisions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Contact Tracing , Humans , Public Health , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
10.
Am J Epidemiol ; 191(1): 137-146, 2022 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470117

ABSTRACT

During the spring of 2020, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) epidemic caused an unprecedented demand for intensive-care resources in the Lombardy region of Italy. Using data on 43,538 hospitalized patients admitted between February 21 and July 12, 2020, we evaluated variations in intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and mortality over the course of 3 periods: the early phase of the pandemic (February 21-March 13), the period of highest pressure on the health-care system (March 14-April 25, when numbers of COVID-19 patients exceeded prepandemic ICU bed capacity), and the declining phase (April 26-July 12). Compared with the early phase, patients aged 70 years or more were less often admitted to an ICU during the period of highest pressure on the health-care system (odds ratio (OR) = 0.47, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.41, 0.54), with longer ICU delays (incidence rate ratio = 1.82, 95% CI: 1.52, 2.18) and lower chances of dying in the ICU (OR = 0.47, 95% CI: 0.34, 0.64). Patients under 56 years of age had more limited changes in the probability of (OR = 0.65, 95% CI: 0.56, 0.76) and delay to (incidence rate ratio = 1.16, 95% CI: 0.95, 1.42) ICU admission and increased mortality (OR = 1.43, 95% CI: 1.00, 2.07). In the declining phase, all quantities decreased for all age groups. These patterns may suggest that limited health-care resources during the peak phase of the epidemic in Lombardy forced a shift in ICU admission criteria to prioritize patients with higher chances of survival.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Delivery of Health Care/statistics & numerical data , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/mortality , Comorbidity , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors , Time Factors
11.
PLoS One ; 16(10): e0258282, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463314

ABSTRACT

In the absence of widespread vaccination for COVID-19, governments and public health officials have advocated for the public to wear masks during the pandemic. The decision to wear a mask in public is likely affected by both beliefs about its efficacy and the prevalence of the behavior. Greater mask use in the community may encourage others to follow this norm, but it also creates an incentive for individuals to free ride on the protection afforded to them by others. We report the results of two vignette-based experiments conducted in the United States (n = 3,100) and Italy (n = 2,659) to examine the causal relationship between beliefs, social norms, and reported intentions to engage in mask promoting behavior. In both countries, survey respondents were quota sampled to be representative of the country's population on key demographics. We find that providing information about how masks protect others increases the likelihood that someone would wear a mask or encourage others to do so in the United States, but not in Italy. There is no effect of providing information about how masks protect the wearer in either country. Additionally, greater mask use increases intentions to wear a mask and encourage someone else to wear theirs properly in both the United States and Italy. Thus, community mask use may be self-reinforcing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Masks , Pandemics/prevention & control , Risk Reduction Behavior , SARS-CoV-2 , Social Norms , Trust/psychology , Adult , COVID-19/psychology , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Intention , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Motivation , Public Health/methods , Random Allocation , Surveys and Questionnaires , United States/epidemiology
12.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(38)2021 09 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1412238

ABSTRACT

How does the public want a COVID-19 vaccine to be allocated? We conducted a conjoint experiment asking 15,536 adults in 13 countries to evaluate 248,576 profiles of potential vaccine recipients who varied randomly on five attributes. Our sample includes diverse countries from all continents. The results suggest that in addition to giving priority to health workers and to those at high risk, the public favors giving priority to a broad range of key workers and to those with lower income. These preferences are similar across respondents of different education levels, incomes, and political ideologies, as well as across most surveyed countries. The public favored COVID-19 vaccines being allocated solely via government programs but were highly polarized in some developed countries on whether taking a vaccine should be mandatory. There is a consensus among the public on many aspects of COVID-19 vaccination, which needs to be taken into account when developing and communicating rollout strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/prevention & control , Public Health , Public Opinion , Vaccination/psychology , Adult , Health Personnel , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
13.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 18253, 2021 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1410892

ABSTRACT

As immunization campaigns are accelerating, understanding how to distribute the scarce doses of vaccines is of paramount importance and a quantitative analysis of the trade-offs involved in domestic-only versus cooperative distribution is still missing. In this study we use a network Susceptible-Infected-Removed (SIR) model to show circumstances under which it is in a country's self-interest to ensure other countries can obtain COVID-19 vaccines rather than focusing only on vaccination of their own residents. In particular, we focus our analysis on the United States and estimate the internal burden of COVID-19 disease under different scenarios about vaccine cooperation. We show that in scenarios in which the US has reached the threshold for domestic herd immunity, the US may find it optimal to donate doses to other countries with lower vaccination coverage, as this would allow for a sharp reduction in the inflow of infected individuals from abroad.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Humans , Immunity, Herd , Models, Theoretical , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , United States , Vaccination
14.
Epidemiology ; 32(6): 781-791, 2021 11 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1356723

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Physical distancing measures aim to reduce person-to-person contact, a key driver of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) transmission. In response to unprecedented restrictions on human contact during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, studies measured social contact patterns under the implementation of physical distancing measures. This rapid review synthesizes empirical data on the changing social contact patterns during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHOD: We conducted a systematic review using PubMed, Medline, Embase, and Google Scholar following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines. We descriptively compared the distribution of contacts observed during the pandemic to pre-COVID data across countries to explore changes in contact patterns during physical distancing measures. RESULTS: We identified 12 studies reporting social contact patterns during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eight studies were conducted in European countries and eleven collected data during the initial mitigation period in the spring of 2020 marked by government-declared lockdowns. Some studies collected additional data after relaxation of initial mitigation. Most study settings reported a mean of between 2 and 5 contacts per person per day, a substantial reduction compared to pre-COVID rates, which ranged from 7 to 26 contacts per day. This reduction was pronounced for contacts outside of the home. Consequently, levels of assortative mixing by age substantially declined. After relaxation of initial mitigation, mean contact rates increased but did not return to pre-COVID levels. Increases in contacts post-relaxation were driven by working-age adults. CONCLUSION: Information on changes in contact patterns during physical distancing measures can guide more realistic representations of contact patterns in mathematical models for SARS-CoV-2 transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adult , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Models, Theoretical , SARS-CoV-2
15.
Soc Sci Med ; 292: 114195, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1308889

ABSTRACT

Vaccine hesitancy has been on the rise throughout the past two decades, especially in high income countries where existing pro-vaccination public health communication strategies have proven ineffective. We argue that appealing to other-regarding preferences is one way of improving the effectiveness of public health communication strategies. To test this argument, we assess how vaccination intentions are influenced by the presence of people who cannot vaccinate, such as the immunosuppressed, newborns or pregnant women, using a laboratory experiment where there is a passive player whose welfare depends on the decisions of other, active players. Results suggest that pro-vaccine messages targeting altruism can increase vaccination intentions by: (i) invoking past experiences of dependence and vulnerability; (ii) stressing cooperation as a social norm; and (iii) emphasizing the presence of vulnerable individuals in a given society.


Subject(s)
Intention , Vaccines , Altruism , Communication , Female , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Pregnancy , Vaccination
16.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(7): e2115699, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1296685

ABSTRACT

Importance: Identifying health care settings and professionals at increased risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection is crucial to defining appropriate strategies, resource allocation, and protocols to protect health care workers (HCWs) and patients. Moreover, such information is crucial to decrease the risk that HCWs and health care facilities become amplifiers for SARS-CoV-2 transmission in the community. Objective: To assess the association of different health care professional categories and operational units, including in-hospital wards, outpatient facilities, and territorial care departments, with seroprevalence and odds of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional study was conducted using IgG serological tests collected from April 1 through May 26, 2020, in the Lombardy region in Italy. Voluntary serological screening was offered to all clinical and nonclinical staff providing any health care services or support to health care services in the region. Data were analyzed from June 2020 through April 2021. Exposures: Employment in the health care sector. Main Outcomes and Measures: Seroprevalence of positive IgG antibody tests for SARS-CoV-2 was collected, and odds ratios of experiencing infection were calculated. Results: A total of 140 782 professionals employed in the health sector were invited to participate in IgG serological screening, among whom 82 961 individuals (59.0% response rate) were tested for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, with median (interquartile range [IQR]; range) age, 50 (40-56; 19-83) years and 59 839 (72.1%) women. Among these individuals, 10 115 HCWs (12.2%; 95% CI, 12.0%-12.4%) had positive results (median [IQR; range] age, 50 [39-55; 20-80] years; 7298 [72.2%] women). Statistically significantly higher odds of infection were found among health assistants (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.48; 95% CI, 1.33-1.65) and nurses (aOR, 1.28; 95% CI, 1.17-1.41) compared with administrative staff and among workers employed in internal medicine (aOR, 2.24; 95% CI, 1.87-2.68), palliative care (aOR, 1.84; 95% CI, 1.38-2.44), rehabilitation (aOR, 1.59; 95% CI, 1.33-1.91), and emergency departments (aOR, 1.56; 95% CI, 1.29-1.89) compared with those working as telephone operators. Statistically significantly lower odds of infection were found among individuals working in forensic medicine (aOR, 0.40; 95% CI, 0.19-0.88), histology and anatomical pathology (aOR, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.52-0.97), and medical device sterilization (aOR, 0.54; 95% CI, 0.35-0.84) compared with those working as telephone operators. The odds of infection for physicians and laboratory personnel were not statistically significantly different from those found among administrative staff. The odds of infection for workers employed in intensive care units and infectious disease wards were not statistically significantly different from those of telephone operators. Conclusions and Relevance: These findings suggest that professionals partially accustomed to managing infectious diseases had higher odds of SARS-CoV-2 infection. The findings further suggest that adequate organization of clinical wards and personnel, appropriate personal protective equipment supply, and training of all workers directly and repeatedly exposed to patients with clinical or subclinical COVID-19 should be prioritized to decrease the risk of infection in health care settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel , Occupational Exposure/adverse effects , Pandemics , Adult , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/virology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Infection Control , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Personal Protective Equipment , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies
17.
Epidemics ; 36: 100481, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1272411

ABSTRACT

We measured contact patterns using online diaries for 304 employees of 3 U.S. companies working remotely. The median number of daily contacts was 2 (IQR 1-4); majority were conversation (55 %), occurred at home (64 %) and lasted >4 h (38 %). These data are crucial for modeling outbreak control among the workforces.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
18.
BMC Med ; 19(1): 89, 2021 04 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1175322

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 spread may have a dramatic impact in countries with vulnerable economies and limited availability of, and access to, healthcare resources and infrastructures. However, in sub-Saharan Africa, a low prevalence and mortality have been observed so far. METHODS: We collected data on individuals' social contacts in the South West Shewa Zone (SWSZ) of Ethiopia across geographical contexts characterized by heterogeneous population density, work and travel opportunities, and access to primary care. We assessed how socio-demographic factors and observed mixing patterns can influence the COVID-19 disease burden, by simulating SARS-CoV-2 transmission in remote settlements, rural villages, and urban neighborhoods, under school closure mandate. RESULTS: From national surveillance data, we estimated a net reproduction number of 1.62 (95% CI 1.55-1.70). We found that, at the end of an epidemic mitigated by school closure alone, 10-15% of the population residing in the SWSZ would have been symptomatic and 0.3-0.4% of the population would require mechanical ventilation and/or possibly result in a fatal outcome. Higher infection attack rates are expected in more urbanized areas, but the highest incidence of critical disease is expected in remote subsistence farming settlements. School closure contributed to reduce the reproduction number by 49% and the attack rate of infections by 28-34%. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that the relatively low burden of COVID-19 in Ethiopia observed so far may depend on social mixing patterns, underlying demography, and the enacted school closures. Our findings highlight that socio-demographic factors can also determine marked heterogeneities across different geographical contexts within the same region, and they contribute to understand why sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing a relatively lower attack rate of severe cases compared to high-income countries.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Quarantine/trends , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Schools/trends , Social Interaction , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/prevention & control , Child , Child, Preschool , Ethiopia/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Young Adult
20.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(3): e211085, 2021 03 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1125122

ABSTRACT

Importance: Solid estimates of the risk of developing symptoms and of progressing to critical disease in individuals infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are key to interpreting coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) dynamics, identifying the settings and the segments of the population where transmission is more likely to remain undetected, and defining effective control strategies. Objective: To estimate the association of age with the likelihood of developing symptoms and the association of age with the likelihood of progressing to critical illness after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cohort study analyzed quarantined case contacts, identified between February 20 and April 16, 2020, in the Lombardy region of Italy. Contacts were monitored daily for symptoms and tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection, by either real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction using nasopharyngeal swabs or retrospectively via IgG serological assays. Close contacts of individuals with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 were selected as those belonging to clusters (ie, groups of contacts associated with an index case) where all individuals were followed up for symptoms and tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Data were analyzed from February to June 2020. Exposure: Close contact with individuals with confirmed COVID-19 cases as identified by contact tracing operations. Main Outcomes and Measures: Age-specific estimates of the risk of developing respiratory symptoms or fever greater than or equal to 37.5 °C and of experiencing critical disease (defined as requiring intensive care or resulting in death) in SARS-CoV-2-infected case contacts. Results: In total, 5484 case contacts (median [interquartile range] age, 50 [30-61] years; 3086 female contacts [56.3%]) were analyzed, 2824 of whom (51.5%) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 (median [interquartile range] age, 53 [34-64] years; 1604 female contacts [56.8%]). The proportion of infected persons who developed symptoms ranged from 18.1% (95% CI, 13.9%-22.9%) among participants younger than 20 years to 64.6% (95% CI, 56.6%-72.0%) for those aged 80 years or older. Most infected contacts (1948 of 2824 individuals [69.0%]) did not develop respiratory symptoms or fever greater than or equal to 37.5 °C. Only 26.1% (95% CI, 24.1%-28.2%) of infected individuals younger than 60 years developed respiratory symptoms or fever greater than or equal to 37.5 °C; among infected participants older than 60 years, 6.6% (95% CI, 5.1%-8.3%) developed critical disease. Female patients were 52.7% (95% CI, 24.4%-70.7%) less likely than male patients to develop critical disease after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Conclusions and Relevance: In this Italian cohort study of close contacts of patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, more than one-half of individuals tested positive for the virus. However, most infected individuals did not develop respiratory symptoms or fever. The low proportion of children and young adults who developed symptoms highlights the possible challenges in readily identifying SARS-CoV-2 infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/physiopathology , Carrier State/epidemiology , Cough/epidemiology , Dyspnea/epidemiology , Fever/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , COVID-19 Serological Testing , Chest Pain/epidemiology , Chest Pain/physiopathology , Child , Child, Preschool , Contact Tracing , Cough/physiopathology , Critical Illness , Disease Progression , Dyspnea/physiopathology , Female , Fever/physiopathology , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pharyngitis/epidemiology , Pharyngitis/physiopathology , Quarantine , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Tachypnea/epidemiology , Tachypnea/physiopathology , Young Adult
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL