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1.
Vaccine ; 40(26): 3690-3700, 2022 Jun 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1873318

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Starting in 2015/16, most Canadian provinces introduced publicly-funded human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination programs for gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (GBM) aged ≤ 26 years. We estimated 12-month changes in HPV vaccine coverage among community-recruited GBM from 2017 to 2021 and identified baseline factors associated with vaccine initiation (≥1 dose) or series completion (3 doses) among participants who were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated at baseline. METHODS: We recruited sexually-active GBM aged ≥ 16 years in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver, Canada, from 02/2017 to 08/2019 and followed them over a median of 12 months (interquartile range = 12-13 months). We calculated the proportion who initiated vaccination (≥1 dose) or completed the series (3 doses) by 12-month follow-up. Analyses were stratified by city and age-eligibility for the publicly-funded programs at baseline (≤26 years or > 26 years). We used multivariable logistic regression to identify baseline factors associated with self-reported incident vaccine initiation or series completion. RESULTS: Among 165 unvaccinated participants aged ≤ 26 years at baseline, incident vaccine initiation (≥1 dose) during follow-up was 24.1% in Montreal, 33.3% in Toronto, and 38.9% in Vancouver. Among 1,059 unvaccinated participants aged > 26 years, incident vaccine initiation was 3.4%, 8.9%, and 10.9%, respectively. Higher education and trying to access pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV were associated with incident vaccination among those aged ≤ 26 years, while younger age, residing in Vancouver (vs. Montreal), being diagnosed with anogenital warts, having both government and private extended medical insurance, and being vaccinated against influenza were associated with incident vaccination among those aged > 26 years. CONCLUSIONS: We observed substantial gains in HPV vaccine coverage among young GBM within 5 + years of targeted program implementation, but gaps remain, particularly among older men who are ineligible for publicly-funded programs. Findings suggest the need for expanded public funding or insurance coverage for HPV vaccines.


Subject(s)
Papillomavirus Infections , Papillomavirus Vaccines , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Aged , Bisexuality , Canada , Homosexuality, Male , Humans , Male , Papillomavirus Infections/prevention & control , Vaccination
2.
Australasian Accounting Business & Finance Journal ; 16(2):0_1,72-90, 2022.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1857517

ABSTRACT

The financial reporting landscape is continuing to expand with both regulated and voluntary disclosures making their way into various reporting frameworks. This increased attention to disclosures is being pursued by professional bodies, governments, companies and other organisations given the changing demands by stakeholders for sustainability disclosures. The Australian superannuation industry is a compulsory system developed to ensure a comfortable retirement income for members. It is now a trillion-dollar business and therefore, has significant influence on the investment decisions that it makes on behalf of its members. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) are increasingly being used as a signal to the market that an organisation is meeting the demands of stakeholders. The objective of this study is exploratory in nature, investigating the types of SDG disclosures made by the largest superannuation funds in Australia. Data was collected through a content analysis of the annual and/or supplementary reports produced by Australian superannuation funds. The findings suggest that Australian superannuation funds currently disclose a minimal level information in accordance with the SDGs in different reporting formats and the SDGs tends to prevail where superannuation managers believe they can have the most impact. Our results have implications for SDG reporting, policy and management practice. Future research that helps explain how managers choose which SDGs to report would be a useful contribution in the context of superannuation.

3.
J Int Neuropsychol Soc ; : 1-11, 2021 Jul 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758093

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Given the aging population of people with HIV (PWH), along with increasing rates of binge drinking among both PWH and the general older adult population, this study examined the independent and interactive effects of HIV, binge drinking, and age on neurocognition. METHOD: Participants were 146 drinkers stratified by HIV and binge drinking status (i.e., ≥4 drinks for women and ≥5 drinks for men within approximately 2 h): HIV+/Binge+ (n = 30), HIV-/Binge+ (n = 23), HIV+/Binge- (n = 55), HIV-/Binge- (n = 38). All participants completed a comprehensive neuropsychological battery measuring demographically-corrected global and domain-specific neurocognitive T scores. ANCOVA models examined independent and interactive effects of HIV and binge drinking on neurocognitive outcomes, adjusting for overall alcohol consumption, lifetime substance use, sex, and age. Subsequent multiple linear regressions examined whether HIV/Binge group moderated the relationship between age and neurocognition. RESULTS: HIV+/Binge+ participants had worse global neurocognition, processing speed, delayed recall, and working memory than HIV-/Binge- participants (p's < .05). While there were significant main effects of HIV and binge drinking, their interaction did not predict any of those neurocognitive outcomes (p's > .05). Significant interactions between age and HIV/Binge group showed that HIV+/Binge+ participants demonstrated steeper negative relationships between age and neurocognitive outcomes of learning, delayed recall, and motor skills compared to HIV-/Binge- participants (p's < .05). CONCLUSIONS: Results showed adverse additive effects of HIV and binge drinking on neurocognitive functioning, with older adults demonstrating the most vulnerability to these effects. Findings support the need for interventions to reduce binge drinking, especially among older PWH.

4.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 139: 108777, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1757608

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Opioid use disorder (OUD) is a debilitating illness that remains a serious public health issue in the United States. Use of telemedicine to deliver medications for the treatment of OUD (MOUD) was limited until the confluence of the COVID-19 and opioid addiction epidemics in spring 2020. Starting in spring 2020, the Department of Veterans Health Affairs (VHA) transitioned from in-person to mostly telemedicine-delivered OUD care to reduce COVID-19 transmission among veterans and providers. To gain a nuanced understanding of provider perspectives on MOUD care delivery using telemedicine, we conducted semi-structured interviews with VHA providers who were using telehealth to deliver MOUD care. METHODS: We conducted semi-structed Zoom interviews with VA clinicians at nine VA Medical Centers (VAMCs) in eight states. Potential study participants were identified as providers who were involved in referrals and provision of buprenorphine treatment for chronic pain and opioid addiction. Audio-recordings of all interviews were transcribed and entered into Atlas. Ti qualitative analysis software. The study team analyzed the transcripts for major themes related to tele-prescribing practices for buprenorphine. RESULTS: Twenty-three VA providers participated in the study, representing 32% of all providers invited to participate in the study. The research team identified the following four themes: (1) COVID-19 spurred a seismic shift in OUD treatment; (2) Video calls provided a rare window into veterans' lives; (3) Providers experienced numerous challenges to virtual visits; and (4) Providers wrestled with paternalism and trust. CONCLUSIONS: The pandemic accelerated the movement toward harm reduction approaches. Prior to the pandemic, stringent requirements existed for patients receiving MOUD care. Providers in this study reflected on the need for these requirements (e.g., in-person visits, toxicology screens) and how reducing this monitoring implied more trust in patients' autonomous decisions. Providers' observation that videoconferencing offered them a window into patients' lives may offer some ways to improve rapport, and research should explore how best to incorporate the additional information conveyed in virtual visits.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Telemedicine , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Humans , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Pandemics , United States
5.
Adv Mater Interfaces ; : 2102209, 2022 Mar 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1729091

ABSTRACT

Multiplex electronic antigen sensors for detection of SARS-Cov-2 spike glycoproteins and hemagglutinin from influenza A are fabricated using scalable processes for straightforward transition to economical mass-production. The sensors utilize the sensitivity and surface chemistry of a 2D MoS2 transducer for attachment of antibody fragments in a conformation favorable for antigen binding with no need for additional linker molecules. To make the devices, ultra-thin layers (3 nm) of amorphous MoS2 are sputtered over pre-patterned metal electrical contacts on a glass chip at room temperature. The amorphous MoS2 is then laser annealed to create an array of semiconducting 2H-MoS2 transducer regions between metal contacts. The semiconducting crystalline MoS2 region is functionalized with monoclonal antibody fragments complementary to either SARS-CoV-2 S1 spike protein or influenza A hemagglutinin. Quartz crystal microbalance experiments indicate strong binding and maintenance of antigen avidity for antibody fragments bound to MoS2. Electrical resistance measurements of sensors exposed to antigen concentrations ranging from 2-20 000 pg mL-1 reveal selective responses. Sensor architecture is adjusted to produce an array of sensors on a single chip suited for detection of analyte concentrations spanning six orders of magnitude from pg mL-1 to µg mL-1.

6.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-318127

ABSTRACT

Background: Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at high risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection. We investigated the burden of SARS-CoV-2 infection in a longitudinal cohort of frontline HCWs in South Africa from April to September 2020.Methods: HCWs working in five departments at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital were followed-up weekly, independent of clinical symptomatology, during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Furthermore, paired sera collected at enrolment and end of surveillance were tested for IgG to receptor binding domain of the spike protein to evaluate for sero-response.Findings: Overall 137 (34·6%) of 396 enrolled HCWs had PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (132·1 [95%CI: 111·8, 156·2] per 1,000 person-months), and an additional 27 only showed sero-response at the end of follow-up. HCWs in the Internal Medicine department had the highest rate of SARS-CoV-2 infection (61·7%;103/167), with HCWs from other departments (27·5%;63/229) experiencing 70% lower odds of infection (adjust odds ratio 0·29 [95%CI: 0·17, 0·49]) in multivariable analysis. Among SARS-CoV-2 PCR-confirmed cases, 14 (10·4%) HCWs remained asymptomatic, 41 (30·4%) were pre-symptomatic and 80 (59·3%) were symptomatic. Symptomatic cases compared to asymptomatic had lower PCR cycle threshold values at diagnosis (24·2 vs. 28·9) and longer duration of PCR-positivity (18·9 vs. 13·0 days).Interpretation: The high rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection among HCWs in a relatively well-resourced middle-income setting attest to the threat that the COVID-19 pandemic poses to health care systems.Funding: This study was supported by the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (grant number RIA2020EF-3020) and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (grant number INV018148_2020). There was also partial support from the Department of Science and Technology and National Research Foundation: South African Research Chair Initiative in Vaccine Preventable Diseases;and the South African Medical Research Council.Conflict of Interest: MCN has received grant support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, MedImmune and Pfizer outside the submitted work;has received honoraria from Pfizer and Sanofi Pasteur outside the submitted work. CLC has received grant support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Pfizer and IMPRINT outside the submitted work;has received honoraria from Pfizer outside the submitted work. SAM has received grant support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Minervax and Novavx outside the submitted work;personal fees from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation outside the submitted work. All other authors have nothing to disclose.Ethical Approval: The study was approved by the Human Research Ethics Committee of the University of the Witwatersrand (reference number 200405) and conducted in accordance with Good Clinical Practice guidelines. All study participants provided written informed consent.

7.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-314594

ABSTRACT

Introduction: We describe epidemiology and outcomes of confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection and admissions among children <18 years in South Africa, an upper-middle income setting with high inequality. Methods: Laboratory and hospital COVID-19 surveillance data, 28 January - 19 September 2020 was used. Testing rates were calculated as number of tested for SARS-CoV-2 divided by population at risk;test positivity rates were calculated as positive tests divided by total number of tests. In-hospital case fatality ratio (CFR) was calculated based on hospitalized positive admissions with outcome data who died in-hospital and death was judged SARS-CoV-2 related by attending physician. Findings: 315,570 children aged <18 years were tested for SARS-CoV-2;representing 8.9% of all 3,548,738 tests and 1.6% of all children in the country. Of children tested, 46,137 (14.6%) were positive. Children made up 2.9% (n=2,007) of all SARS-CoV-2 positive admissions to sentinel hospitals. Among children, 47 died (2.6% case-fatality). In-hospital deaths were associated with male sex [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 2.18 (95% confidence intervals (CI) 1.08 - 4.40)] vs female;age <1 year [aOR 4.11 (95% CI 1.08-15.54)], age 10-14 years [aOR 4.20 (95% CI1.07-16.44)], age 15-17 years [aOR 4.86 (95% 1.28 -18.51)] vs age 1-4 years;admission to a public hospital [aOR 5.07(95% 2.01 -12.76)] vs private hospital and ≥1 underlying conditions [aOR 12.09 (95% CI 4.19-34.89)] vs none Conclusions: Children with underlying conditions were at greater risk of severe SARS-CoV-2 outcomes. Children > 10 years and those with underlying conditions should be considered for increased testing and vaccination.

8.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-307421

ABSTRACT

The ongoing pandemic of SARS-CoV-2 calls for rapid and cost-effective methods to accurately identify infected individuals. The vast majority of patient samples is assessed for viral RNA presence by RT-qPCR. Our biomedical research institute, in collaboration between partner hospitals and an accredited clinical diagnostic laboratory, established a diagnostic testing pipeline that has reported on more than 252,000 RT-qPCR results since its commencement at the beginning of April 2020. However, due to ongoing demand and competition for critical resources, alternative testing strategies were sought. In this work, we present a clinically-validated procedure for high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 detection by RT-LAMP that is robust, reliable, repeatable, specific, and inexpensive.

9.
Int Wound J ; 2022 Feb 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1685329

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study was to determine the impact of a specially designed care bundle on the development of facial pressure injuries among frontline health care workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) during the COVID-19 pandemic. This was a mixed methods study. First, a pre-posttest observational design was employed to evaluate the impact of the pre-piloted intervention, a care bundle including skin cleansing and hydration, protective material use, facemask selection and skin inspection, developed in line with international best practice guidelines. Data were collected using survey methodology. Frontline COVID-19 staff working in acute, community and ambulance services were invited to participate. Then, judgemental and volunteer sampling was used to select participants to undertake semi-structured interviews to elicit feedback on their perceptions of the care bundle. The sample included 120 acute hospital staff, 60 Ambulance staff, 24 Community Hub staff and 20 COVID-19 testing centre staff. A survey response rate of 61% was realised (n = 135/224). Of the participants, 32% (n = 43) had a facial pressure ulcer (FPI) pre-intervention and 13% (n = 18) developed an FPI while using the care bundle. The odds ratio (OR) was 0.33 (95% CI: 0.18 to 0.61; P = .0004), indicating a 77% reduction in the odds of FPI development with use of the care bundle. Analysis of the qualitative data from 22 interviews identified three key themes, the context for the care bundle, the ease of use of the care bundle and the care bundle as a solution to FPI development. The care bundle reduced the incidence of FPI among the participants and was found to be easy to use. Implementation of skin protection for frontline staff continues to be important given the persistently high incidence of COVID-19 and the ongoing need to wear PPE for protracted durations.

10.
Sex Transm Dis ; 48(12): 939-944, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1605252

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Reported cases of Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) and Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) infections are increasing among Canadian men. Estimates of community-based CT/NG prevalence are lacking among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (GBM). METHODS: Respondent driven sampling was used to recruit GBM in Montréal, Canada between February 2017 and June 2018. Specimens provided from urogenital, rectal, and pharyngeal sites were analyzed using nucleic acid amplification test to detect CT/NG. Prevalence estimates of CT/NG, overall and by anatomical site were calculated. All estimates are respondent-driven sampling-adjusted. RESULTS: Among 1177 GBM, the prevalence of rectal, urogenital, pharyngeal and overall were respectively 2.4%, 0.4%, 0.4%, and 2.8% for CT infections, and 3.1%, 0.4%, 3.5%, and 5.6% for NG infections. If testing had been limited to the urogenital site, 80% and 94% of CT and NG infections, respectively, would have been missed. CONCLUSIONS: This community-based study among GBM shows that the CT prevalence was about half of that observed for NG. A large part of CT/NG infections involves only the extragenital sites, highlighting the need for systematic multisite screening regardless of symptoms. In the mist of the COVID-19 pandemic and the limited CT/NG screening capacity due to test kits shortage, it might be considered to prioritize rectal and pharyngeal CT/NG testing over urogenital testing in asymptomatic GBM.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chlamydia Infections , Gonorrhea , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Canada/epidemiology , Chlamydia Infections/epidemiology , Chlamydia trachomatis/genetics , Gonorrhea/epidemiology , Homosexuality, Male , Humans , Male , Neisseria gonorrhoeae/genetics , Pandemics , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2
11.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-296547

ABSTRACT

Background: Globally rifampicin-resistant tuberculosis disease affects around 460 000 people each year. Current recommended regimens are 9-24 months duration, have poor efficacy and carry significant toxicity. A shorter, less toxic and more efficacious regimen would improve outcomes for people with rifampicin-resistant tuberculosis. MethodsTB-PRACTECAL is an open-label, randomised, controlled, phase II/III non-inferiority trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of 24 week regimens containing bedaquiline and pretomanid to treat rifampicin resistant tuberculosis. Conducted in Uzbekistan, South Africa and Belarus, patients aged 15 and above with rifampicin resistant pulmonary tuberculosis and requiring a new course of therapy are eligible for inclusion irrespective of HIV status. In the first stage, equivalent to a phase IIB trial, patients are randomly assigned one of four regimens, stratified by site. Investigational regimens include oral bedaquiline, pretomanid and linezolid. Additionally, two of the regimens also include moxifloxacin (arm 1) and clofazimine (arm 2) respectively. Treatment is administered under direct observation for 24 weeks in investigational arms and 36 to 96 weeks in the standard of care arm. The second stage of the study is equivalent to a phase III trial, investigating the safety and efficacy of the most promising regimen/s. The primary outcome is the percentage of unfavourable outcomes at 72 weeks post randomisation. This is a composite of early treatment discontinuation, treatment failure, recurrence, lost to follow up and death. The study is conducted in accordance with ICH-GCP and full ethical approval was obtained from Médecins sans Frontières ethical review board, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine ethical review board as well as ERBs and regulatory authorities at each site. DiscussionTB-PRACTECAL is an ambitious trial using adaptive design to accelerate regimen assessment and bring novel regimens that are effective and safe to patients quicker. The trial took a patient-centred approach, adapting to best practice guidelines throughout recruitment. The implementation faced significant challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. The trial was terminated early for efficacy on the advice of the DSMB and will report on data collected up to end of recruitment and additionally, the planned final analysis at 72 weeks after end of recruitment. Trial registrationClinicaltrials.gov registration number NCT02589782

12.
Influenza Other Respir Viruses ; 16(1): 34-47, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526373

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: We describe epidemiology and outcomes of confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection and positive admissions among children <18 years in South Africa, an upper-middle income setting with high inequality. METHODS: Laboratory and hospital COVID-19 surveillance data, 28 January - 19 September 2020 was used. Testing rates were calculated as number of tested for SARS-CoV-2 divided by population at risk; test positivity rates were calculated as positive tests divided by total number of tests. In-hospital case fatality ratio (CFR) was calculated based on hospitalized positive admissions with outcome data who died in-hospital and whose death was judged SARS-CoV-2 related by attending physician. FINDINGS: 315 570 children aged <18 years were tested for SARS-CoV-2; representing 8.9% of all 3 548 738 tests and 1.6% of all children in the country. Of children tested, 46 137 (14.6%) were positive. Children made up 2.9% (n = 2007) of all SARS-CoV-2 positive admissions to sentinel hospitals. Among children, 47 died (2.6% case-fatality). In-hospital deaths were associated with male sex [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 2.18 (95% confidence intervals [CI] 1.08-4.40)] vs female; age <1 year [aOR 4.11 (95% CI 1.08-15.54)], age 10-14 years [aOR 4.20 (95% CI1.07-16.44)], age 15-17 years [aOR 4.86 (95% 1.28-18.51)] vs age 1-4 years; admission to a public hospital [aOR 5.07(95% 2.01-12.76)] vs private hospital and ≥1 underlying conditions [aOR 12.09 (95% CI 4.19-34.89)] vs none. CONCLUSIONS: Children with underlying conditions were at greater risk of severe SARS-CoV-2 outcomes. Children > 10 years, those in certain provinces and those with underlying conditions should be considered for increased testing and vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adolescent , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Hospitals , Humans , Infant , Male , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , South Africa/epidemiology
13.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(10): 1896-1900, 2021 11 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1522151

ABSTRACT

From April to September 2020, we investigated severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections in a cohort of 396 healthcare workers (HCWs) from 5 departments at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, South Africa. Overall, 34.6% of HCWs had polymerase chain reaction-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (132.1 [95% confidence interval, 111.8-156.2] infections per 1000 person-months); an additional 27 infections were identified by serology. HCWs in the internal medicine department had the highest rate of infection (61.7%). Among polymerase chain reaction-confirmed cases, 10.4% remained asymptomatic, 30.4% were presymptomatic, and 59.3% were symptomatic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Cohort Studies , Health Personnel , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , South Africa/epidemiology
14.
Wellcome Open Res ; 6: 9, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1502788

ABSTRACT

The ongoing pandemic of SARS-CoV-2 calls for rapid and cost-effective methods to accurately identify infected individuals. The vast majority of patient samples is assessed for viral RNA presence by RT-qPCR. Our biomedical research institute, in collaboration between partner hospitals and an accredited clinical diagnostic laboratory, established a diagnostic testing pipeline that has reported on more than 252,000 RT-qPCR results since its commencement at the beginning of April 2020. However, due to ongoing demand and competition for critical resources, alternative testing strategies were sought. In this work, we present a clinically-validated procedure for high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 detection by RT-LAMP in 25 minutes that is robust, reliable, repeatable, sensitive, specific, and inexpensive.

15.
Ocul Immunol Inflamm ; : 1-3, 2021 Oct 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462161

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia may predispose to thromboembolic disease, including after the acute phase. We report on a unique case of central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO) occurring eight months after diagnosis of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia in a likely case of post-COVID-19 syndrome. CASE REPORT: A 42-year-old man developed blurred vision in his right eye eight months after symptoms of pneumonia. He had no underlying medical conditions, but experienced exertional chest pain since diagnosis of COVID-19 was confirmed by detection of SARS-CoV-2 on nasopharyngeal swab and was also seeing cardiology for management of myocarditis. His best-corrected visual acuity on snellen chart testing was reduced to 6/18 in the affected right eye, and dilated fundal examination revealed a non-ischaemic CRVO. CONCLUSION: The thromboembolic complications of COVID-19 may extend to CRVO, which in this case presented months after onset of symptoms of pneumonia, in association with myocarditis.

16.
Sustainability ; 13(18):10124, 2021.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1410956

ABSTRACT

Globally, more than 1.5 billion people have hearing loss. Unfortunately, most people with hearing loss reside in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) where traditional face-to-face services rendered by trained health professionals are few and unequally dispersed. The COVID-19 pandemic has further hampered the effectiveness of traditional service delivery models to provide hearing care. Digital health technologies are strong enablers of hearing care and can support health delivery models that are more sustainable. The convergence of advancing technology and mobile connectivity is enabling new ways of providing decentralized hearing services. Recently, an abundance of digital applications that offer hearing tests directly to the public has become available. A growing body of evidence has shown the ability of several approaches to provide accurate, accessible, and remote hearing assessment to consumers. Further effort is needed to promote greater accuracy across a variety of test platforms, improve sensitivity to ear disease, and scale up hearing rehabilitation, especially in LMICs.

17.
Wellcome Open Research ; 6, 2021.
Article in English | PMC | ID: covidwho-1389814

ABSTRACT

The ongoing pandemic of SARS-CoV-2 calls for rapid and cost-effective methods to accurately identify infected individuals. The vast majority of patient samples is assessed for viral RNA presence by RT-qPCR. Our biomedical research institute, in collaboration between partner hospitals and an accredited clinical diagnostic laboratory, established a diagnostic testing pipeline that has reported on more than 252,000 RT-qPCR results since its commencement at the beginning of April 2020. However, due to ongoing demand and competition for critical resources, alternative testing strategies were sought. In this work, we present a clinically-validated procedure for high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 detection by RT-LAMP that is robust, reliable, repeatable, specific, and inexpensive.

19.
Pediatr Infect Dis J ; 40(9): e323-e332, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1358506

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Globally, very few childhood deaths have been attributed to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We evaluated clinical, microbiologic and postmortem histopathologic findings in childhood deaths in whom severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was identified antemortem or postmortem. METHODS: Surveillance of childhood deaths was ongoing during the initial COVID-19 outbreak in South Africa from April 14, 2020, to August 31, 2020. All children hospitalized during this time had a SARS-CoV-2 test done as part of standard of care. Postmortem sampling included minimally invasive tissue sampling (MITS) of lung, liver and heart tissue; blood and lung samples for bacterial culture and molecular detection of viruses (including SARS-CoV-2) and bacteria. The cause of death attribution was undertaken by a multidisciplinary team and reported using World Health Organization framework for cause of death attribution. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 was identified on antemortem and/or postmortem sampling in 11.7% (20/171) of deceased children, including 13.2% (12/91) in whom MITS was done. Eighteen (90%) of 20 deaths with SARS-CoV-2 infection were <12 months age. COVID-19 was attributed in the causal pathway to death in 91.7% (11/12) and 87.5% (7/8) cases with and without MITS, respectively. Lung histopathologic features in COVID-19-related deaths included diffuse alveolar damage (n = 6, 54.5%), type 2 pneumocyte proliferation (n = 6, 54.5%) and hyaline membrane formation (n = 5, 36.4%). Culture-confirmed invasive bacterial disease was evident in 54.5% (6/11) of COVID-19 attributed deaths investigated with MITS. CONCLUSIONS: COVID-19 was in the causal pathway of 10.5% (18/171) of all childhood deaths under surveillance. The postmortem histopathologic features in fatal COVID-19 cases in children were consistent with reports on COVID-19 deaths in adults; although there was a high prevalence of invasive bacterial disease in the children.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adolescent , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/therapy , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Gastroenteritis/complications , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Respiration, Artificial , Respiratory Tract Diseases/complications , Seizures/complications , South Africa/epidemiology
20.
Viruses ; 13(8)2021 07 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1332907

ABSTRACT

Endemic human coronaviruses (HCoV) are capable of causing a range of diseases from the common cold to pneumonia. We evaluated the epidemiology and seasonality of endemic HCoVs in children hospitalized with clinical pneumonia and among community controls living in countries with a high HIV burden, namely South Africa and Zambia, between August 2011 to October 2013. Nasopharyngeal/oropharyngeal swabs were collected from all cases and controls and tested for endemic HCoV species and 12 other respiratory viruses using a multiplex real-time PCR assay. We found that the likelihood of detecting endemic HCoV species was higher among asymptomatic controls than cases (11% vs. 7.2%; 95% CI: 1.2-2.0). This was however only observed among children > 6 months and was mainly driven by the Betacoronavirus endemic species (HCoV-OC43 and -HKU1). Endemic HCoV species were detected through the year; however, in Zambia, the endemic Betacoronavirus species tended to peak during the winter months (May-August). There was no association between HIV status and endemic HCoV detection.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Coronavirus/physiology , Case-Control Studies , Child , Child, Preschool , Coronavirus/classification , Coronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Hospitalization , Humans , Infant , Male , Nasopharynx/virology , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , Seasons , South Africa/epidemiology , Zambia/epidemiology
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