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2.
PLoS Med ; 19(6): e1004024, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1902610

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Real-world evaluation of the safety profile of vaccines after licensure is crucial to accurately characterise safety beyond clinical trials, support continued use, and thereby improve public confidence. The Sisonke study aimed to assess the safety and effectiveness of the Janssen Ad26.COV2.S vaccine among healthcare workers (HCWs) in South Africa. Here, we present the safety data. METHODS AND FINDINGS: In this open-label phase 3b implementation study among all eligible HCWs in South Africa registered in the national Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS), we monitored adverse events (AEs) at vaccination sites through self-reporting triggered by text messages after vaccination, healthcare provider reports, and active case finding. The frequency and incidence rate of non-serious and serious AEs were evaluated from the day of first vaccination (17 February 2021) until 28 days after the final vaccination in the study (15 June 2021). COVID-19 breakthrough infections, hospitalisations, and deaths were ascertained via linkage of the electronic vaccination register with existing national databases. Among 477,234 participants, 10,279 AEs were reported, of which 138 (1.3%) were serious AEs (SAEs) or AEs of special interest. Women reported more AEs than men (2.3% versus 1.6%). AE reports decreased with increasing age (3.2% for age 18-30 years, 2.1% for age 31-45 years, 1.8% for age 46-55 years, and 1.5% for age > 55 years). Participants with previous COVID-19 infection reported slightly more AEs (2.6% versus 2.1%). The most common reactogenicity events were headache (n = 4,923) and body aches (n = 4,483), followed by injection site pain (n = 2,767) and fever (n = 2,731), and most occurred within 48 hours of vaccination. Two cases of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome and 4 cases of Guillain-Barré Syndrome were reported post-vaccination. Most SAEs and AEs of special interest (n = 138) occurred at lower than the expected population rates. Vascular (n = 37; 39.1/100,000 person-years) and nervous system disorders (n = 31; 31.7/100,000 person-years), immune system disorders (n = 24; 24.3/100,000 person-years), and infections and infestations (n = 19; 20.1/100,000 person-years) were the most common reported SAE categories. A limitation of the study was the single-arm design, with limited routinely collected morbidity comparator data in the study setting. CONCLUSIONS: We observed similar patterns of AEs as in phase 3 trials. AEs were mostly expected reactogenicity signs and symptoms. Furthermore, most SAEs occurred below expected rates. The single-dose Ad26.COV2.S vaccine demonstrated an acceptable safety profile, supporting the continued use of this vaccine in this setting. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04838795; Pan African Clinical Trials Registry PACTR202102855526180.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Ad26COVS1 , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Female , Health Personnel , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , South Africa/epidemiology , Young Adult
3.
Lancet Infect Dis ; 22(4): 496-506, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1839428

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Bedaquiline improves outcomes of patients with rifampicin-resistant and multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis; however, emerging resistance threatens this success. We did a cross-sectional and longitudinal analysis evaluating the epidemiology, genetic basis, and treatment outcomes associated with bedaquiline resistance, using data from South Africa (2015-19). METHODS: Patients with drug-resistant tuberculosis starting bedaquiline-based treatment had surveillance samples submitted at baseline, month 2, and month 6, along with demographic information. Culture-positive baseline and post-baseline isolates had phenotypic resistance determined. Eligible patients were aged 12 years or older with a positive culture sample at baseline or, if the sample was invalid or negative, a sample within 30 days of the baseline sample submitted for bedaquiline drug susceptibility testing. For the longitudinal study, the first surveillance sample had to be phenotypically susceptible to bedaquiline for inclusion. Whole-genome sequencing was done on bedaquiline-resistant isolates and a subset of bedaquiline-susceptible isolates. The National Institute for Communicable Diseases tuberculosis reference laboratory, and national tuberculosis surveillance databases were matched to the Electronic Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis Register. We assessed baseline resistance prevalence, mutations, transmission, cumulative resistance incidence, and odds ratios (ORs) associating risk factors for resistance with patient outcomes. FINDINGS: Between Jan 1, 2015, and July 31, 2019, 8041 patients had surveillance samples submitted, of whom 2023 were included in the cross-sectional analysis and 695 in the longitudinal analysis. Baseline bedaquiline resistance prevalence was 3·8% (76 of 2023 patients; 95% CI 2·9-4·6), and it was associated with previous exposure to bedaquiline or clofazimine (OR 7·1, 95% CI 2·3-21·9) and with rifampicin-resistant or MDR tuberculosis with additional resistance to either fluoroquinolones or injectable drugs (pre-extensively-drug resistant [XDR] tuberculosis: 4·2, 1·7-10·5) or to both (XDR tuberculosis: 4·8, 2·0-11·7). Rv0678 mutations were the sole genetic basis of phenotypic resistance. Baseline resistance could be attributed to previous bedaquiline or clofazimine exposure in four (5·3%) of 76 patients and to primary transmission in six (7·9%). Odds of successful treatment outcomes were lower in patients with baseline bedaquiline resistance (0·5, 0·3-1). Resistance during treatment developed in 16 (2·3%) of 695 patients, at a median of 90 days (IQR 62-195), with 12 of these 16 having pre-XDR or XDR. INTERPRETATION: Bedaquiline resistance was associated with poorer treatment outcomes. Rapid assessment of bedaquiline resistance, especially when patients were previously exposed to bedaquiline or clofazimine, should be prioritised at baseline or if patients remain culture-positive after 2 months of treatment. Preventing resistance by use of novel combination therapies, current treatment optimisation, and patient support is essential. FUNDING: National Institute for Communicable Diseases of South Africa.


Subject(s)
Mycobacterium tuberculosis , Tuberculosis, Multidrug-Resistant , Antitubercular Agents/pharmacology , Antitubercular Agents/therapeutic use , Clofazimine/therapeutic use , Cross-Sectional Studies , Diarylquinolines/therapeutic use , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Mycobacterium tuberculosis/genetics , Rifampin/pharmacology , Rifampin/therapeutic use , Tuberculosis, Multidrug-Resistant/drug therapy , Tuberculosis, Multidrug-Resistant/epidemiology
5.
Lancet Respir Med ; 10(6): 603-622, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758001

ABSTRACT

The global tuberculosis burden remains substantial, with more than 10 million people newly ill per year. Nevertheless, tuberculosis incidence has slowly declined over the past decade, and mortality has decreased by almost a third in tandem. This positive trend was abruptly reversed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which in many parts of the world has resulted in a substantial reduction in tuberculosis testing and case notifications, with an associated increase in mortality, taking global tuberculosis control back by roughly 10 years. Here, we consider points of intersection between the tuberculosis and COVID-19 pandemics, identifying wide-ranging approaches that could be taken to reverse the devastating effects of COVID-19 on tuberculosis control. We review the impact of COVID-19 at the population level on tuberculosis case detection, morbidity and mortality, and the patient-level impact, including susceptibility to disease, clinical presentation, diagnosis, management, and prognosis. We propose strategies to reverse or mitigate the deleterious effects of COVID-19 and restore tuberculosis services. Finally, we highlight research priorities and major challenges and controversies that need to be addressed to restore and advance the global response to tuberculosis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Tuberculosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Incidence , Pandemics , Tuberculosis/diagnosis , Tuberculosis/epidemiology , Tuberculosis/therapy
6.
Lancet ; 399(10330): 1141-1153, 2022 03 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1747473

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to assess the effectiveness of a single dose of the Ad26.COV2.S vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) in health-care workers in South Africa during two waves of the South African COVID-19 epidemic. METHODS: In the single-arm, open-label, phase 3B implementation Sisonke study, health-care workers aged 18 years and older were invited for vaccination at one of 122 vaccination sites nationally. Participants received a single dose of 5 × 1010 viral particles of the Ad26.COV2.S vaccine. Vaccinated participants were linked with their person-level data from one of two national medical insurance schemes (scheme A and scheme B) and matched for COVID-19 risk with an unvaccinated member of the general population. The primary outcome was vaccine effectiveness against severe COVID-19, defined as COVID-19-related admission to hospital, hospitalisation requiring critical or intensive care, or death, in health-care workers compared with the general population, ascertained 28 days or more after vaccination or matching, up to data cutoff. This study is registered with the South African National Clinical Trial Registry, DOH-27-022021-6844, ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04838795, and the Pan African Clinical Trials Registry, PACTR202102855526180, and is closed to accrual. FINDINGS: Between Feb 17 and May 17, 2021, 477 102 health-care workers were enrolled and vaccinated, of whom 357 401 (74·9%) were female and 119 701 (25·1%) were male, with a median age of 42·0 years (33·0-51·0). 215 813 vaccinated individuals were matched with 215 813 unvaccinated individuals. As of data cutoff (July 17, 2021), vaccine effectiveness derived from the total matched cohort was 83% (95% CI 75-89) to prevent COVID-19-related deaths, 75% (69-82) to prevent COVID-19-related hospital admissions requiring critical or intensive care, and 67% (62-71) to prevent COVID-19-related hospitalisations. The vaccine effectiveness for all three outcomes were consistent across scheme A and scheme B. The vaccine effectiveness was maintained in older health-care workers and those with comorbidities including HIV infection. During the course of the study, the beta (B.1.351) and then the delta (B.1.617.2) SARS-CoV-2 variants of concerns were dominant, and vaccine effectiveness remained consistent (for scheme A plus B vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19-related hospital admission during beta wave was 62% [95% CI 42-76] and during delta wave was 67% [62-71], and vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19-related death during beta wave was 86% [57-100] and during delta wave was 82% [74-89]). INTERPRETATION: The single-dose Ad26.COV2.S vaccine shows effectiveness against severe COVID-19 disease and COVID-19-related death after vaccination, and against both beta and delta variants, providing real-world evidence for its use globally. FUNDING: National Treasury of South Africa, the National Department of Health, Solidarity Response Fund NPC, The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, The Elma Vaccines and Immunization Foundation, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Vaccines , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Male , SARS-CoV-2 , South Africa/epidemiology
7.
Science ; 376(6593): eabn4947, 2022 05 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1741547

ABSTRACT

We provide two methods for monitoring reinfection trends in routine surveillance data to identify signatures of changes in reinfection risk and apply these approaches to data from South Africa's severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) epidemic to date. Although we found no evidence of increased reinfection risk associated with circulation of the Beta (B.1.351) or Delta (B.1.617.2) variants, we did find clear, population-level evidence to suggest immune evasion by the Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant in previously infected individuals in South Africa. Reinfections occurring between 1 November 2021 and 31 January 2022 were detected in individuals infected in all three previous waves, and there has been an increase in the risk of having a third infection since mid-November 2021.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Reinfection/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , South Africa/epidemiology
8.
Lancet ; 399(10323): 437-446, 2022 01 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1641746

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant of concern was identified in South Africa in November, 2021, and was associated with an increase in COVID-19 cases. We aimed to assess the clinical severity of infections with the omicron variant using S gene target failure (SGTF) on the Thermo Fisher Scientific TaqPath COVID-19 PCR test as a proxy. METHODS: We did data linkages for national, South African COVID-19 case data, SARS-CoV-2 laboratory test data, SARS-CoV-2 genome data, and COVID-19 hospital admissions data. For individuals diagnosed with COVID-19 via TaqPath PCR tests, infections were designated as either SGTF or non-SGTF. The delta variant was identified by genome sequencing. Using multivariable logistic regression models, we assessed disease severity and hospitalisations by comparing individuals with SGTF versus non-SGTF infections diagnosed between Oct 1 and Nov 30, 2021, and we further assessed disease severity by comparing SGTF-infected individuals diagnosed between Oct 1 and Nov 30, 2021, with delta variant-infected individuals diagnosed between April 1 and Nov 9, 2021. FINDINGS: From Oct 1 (week 39), 2021, to Dec 6 (week 49), 2021, 161 328 cases of COVID-19 were reported in South Africa. 38 282 people were diagnosed via TaqPath PCR tests and 29 721 SGTF infections and 1412 non-SGTF infections were identified. The proportion of SGTF infections increased from two (3·2%) of 63 in week 39 to 21 978 (97·9%) of 22 455 in week 48. After controlling for factors associated with hospitalisation, individuals with SGTF infections had significantly lower odds of admission than did those with non-SGTF infections (256 [2·4%] of 10 547 vs 121 [12·8%] of 948; adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 0·2, 95% CI 0·1-0·3). After controlling for factors associated with disease severity, the odds of severe disease were similar between hospitalised individuals with SGTF versus non-SGTF infections (42 [21%] of 204 vs 45 [40%] of 113; aOR 0·7, 95% CI 0·3-1·4). Compared with individuals with earlier delta variant infections, SGTF-infected individuals had a significantly lower odds of severe disease (496 [62·5%] of 793 vs 57 [23·4%] of 244; aOR 0·3, 95% CI 0·2-0·5), after controlling for factors associated with disease severity. INTERPRETATION: Our early analyses suggest a significantly reduced odds of hospitalisation among individuals with SGTF versus non-SGTF infections diagnosed during the same time period. SGTF-infected individuals had a significantly reduced odds of severe disease compared with individuals infected earlier with the delta variant. Some of this reduced severity is probably a result of previous immunity. FUNDING: The South African Medical Research Council, the South African National Department of Health, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the African Society of Laboratory Medicine, Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, and the Fleming Fund.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/physiopathology , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Severity of Illness Index , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Genome, Viral , Humans , Information Storage and Retrieval , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Multivariate Analysis , Odds Ratio , South Africa/epidemiology , Young Adult
9.
10.
medRxiv; 2021.
Preprint in English | MedRxiv | ID: ppcovidwho-293547

ABSTRACT

Objective To examine whether SARS-CoV-2 reinfection risk has changed through time in South Africa, in the context of the emergence of the Beta, Delta, and Omicron variantsDesign Retrospective analysis of routine epidemiological surveillance dataSetting Line list data on SARS-CoV-2 with specimen receipt dates between 04 March 2020 and 27 November 2021, collected through South Africa’s National Notifiable Medical Conditions Surveillance SystemParticipants 2,796,982 individuals with laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 who had a positive test result at least 90 days prior to 27 November 2021. Individuals having sequential positive tests at least 90 days apart were considered to have suspected reinfections.Main outcome measures Incidence of suspected reinfections through time;comparison of reinfection rates to the expectation under a null model (approach 1);empirical estimates of the time-varying hazards of infection and reinfection throughout the epidemic (approach 2)Results 35,670 suspected reinfections were identified among 2,796,982 individuals with laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 who had a positive test result at least 90 days prior to 27 November 2021. The number of reinfections observed through the end of the third wave was consistent with the null model of no change in reinfection risk (approach 1). Although increases in the hazard of primary infection were observed following the introduction of both the Beta and Delta variants, no corresponding increase was observed in the reinfection hazard (approach 2). Contrary to expectation, the estimated hazard ratio for reinfection versus primary infection was lower during waves driven by the Beta and Delta variants than for the first wave (relative hazard ratio for wave 2 versus wave 1: 0.75 (CI95: 0.59–0.97);for wave 3 versus wave 1: 0.71 (CI95: 0.56–0.92)). In contrast, the recent spread of the Omicron variant has been associated with a decrease in the hazard coefficient for primary infection and an increase in reinfection hazard coefficient. The estimated hazard ratio for reinfection versus primary infection for the period from 1 November 2021 to 27 November 2021 versus wave 1 was 2.39 (CI95: 1.88–3.11).Conclusion Population-level evidence suggests that the Omicron variant is associated with substantial ability to evade immunity from prior infection. In contrast, there is no population-wide epidemiological evidence of immune escape associated with the Beta or Delta variants. This finding has important implications for public health planning, particularly in countries like South Africa with high rates of immunity from prior infection. Urgent questions remain regarding whether Omicron is also able to evade vaccine-induced immunity and the potential implications of reduced immunity to infection on protection against severe disease and death.Box 1What is already known on this topicWhat is already known on this topicPrior infection with SARS-CoV-2 is estimated to provide at least an 80% reduction in infection risk (1,2).Laboratory-based studies indicate reduced neutralization by convalescent serum for the Beta and Delta variants relative to wild type virus (3–6);however, the impact of these reductions on risk of reinfection is not known, and laboratory assessments of Omicron are still underway.What this study addsWhat this study addsWe provide two methods for monitoring reinfection trends to identify signatures of changes in reinfection risk.We find no evidence of increased reinfection risk associated with circulation of Beta or Delta variants compared to the ancestral strain in routine epidemiological data from South Africa.In contrast, we find clear, population-level evidence to suggest substantial immune evasion by the Omicron variant.One sentence summary Analysis of routine surveillance data from South Africa suggests that, in contrast to the Beta and Delta, the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 demonstrates substantial population-level evidence for evasion of immunity from prior infection.Competing Interest StatementAll authors have completed the ICMJE uniform isclosure form. CC and AvG have received funding from Sanofi Pasteur in the past 36 months. JRCP and KM serve on the Ministerial Advisory Committee on COVID-19 of the South African National Department of Health. The authors have declared no other relationships or activities that could appear to have influenced the submitted work.Funding StatementThis work was supported by the South African Department of Science and Innovation and the National Research Foundation and the Wellcome Trust (grant number 221003/Z/20/Z) in collaboration with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, United Kingdom.Author DeclarationsI confirm all relevant ethical guidelines have been followed, and any necessary IRB and/or ethics committee approvals have been obtained.YesThe details of the IRB/oversight body that provided approval or exemption for the research described are given below:This study has received ethical clearance from University of the Witwatersrand (Clearance certificate number M210752, formerly M160667) and approval under reciprocal review from Stellenbosch University (Project ID 19330, Ethics Reference Number N20/11/074_RECIP_WITS_M160667_COVID-19).I confirm that all necessary patient/participant consent has been obtained and the appropriate institutional forms have been archived, and that any patient/participant/sample identifiers included were not known to anyone (e.g., hospital staff, patients or participants themselves) outside the research group so cannot be used to identify individuals.YesI understand that all clinical trials and any other prospective interventional studies must be registered with an ICMJE-approved registry, such as ClinicalTrials.gov. I confirm that any such study reported in the manuscript has been registered and the trial registration ID is provided (note: if posting a prospective study registered retrospectively, please provide a statement in the trial ID field explaining why the study was not registered in advance).YesI have followed all appropriate research reporting guidelines and uploaded the relevant EQUATOR Network research reporting checklist(s) and other pertinent material as supplementary files, if applicable.YesData and code will be made available at https://github.com/jrcpulliam/reinfections. The following data are included in the repository: - Counts of reinfections and primary infections by province, age group (5-year bands), and sex (M, F, U) - Daily time series of primary infections and suspected reinfections by specimen receipt date (national) - Model output: posterior samples from the MCMC fitting procedure and simulation results Requests for additional data must be made in writing to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases, South Africa. https://github.com/jrcpulliam/reinfections

11.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 8(3): ofab040, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1057871

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Dexamethasone and remdesivir have the potential to reduce coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID)-related mortality or recovery time, but their cost-effectiveness in countries with limited intensive care resources is unknown. METHODS: We projected intensive care unit (ICU) needs and capacity from August 2020 to January 2021 using the South African National COVID-19 Epi Model. We assessed the cost-effectiveness of (1) administration of dexamethasone to ventilated patients and remdesivir to nonventilated patients, (2) dexamethasone alone to both nonventilated and ventilated patients, (3) remdesivir to nonventilated patients only, and (4) dexamethasone to ventilated patients only, all relative to a scenario of standard care. We estimated costs from the health care system perspective in 2020 US dollars, deaths averted, and the incremental cost-effectiveness ratios of each scenario. RESULTS: Remdesivir for nonventilated patients and dexamethasone for ventilated patients was estimated to result in 408 (uncertainty range, 229-1891) deaths averted (assuming no efficacy [uncertainty range, 0%-70%] of remdesivir) compared with standard care and to save $15 million. This result was driven by the efficacy of dexamethasone and the reduction of ICU-time required for patients treated with remdesivir. The scenario of dexamethasone alone for nonventilated and ventilated patients requires an additional $159 000 and averts 689 [uncertainty range, 330-1118] deaths, resulting in $231 per death averted, relative to standard care. CONCLUSIONS: The use of remdesivir for nonventilated patients and dexamethasone for ventilated patients is likely to be cost-saving compared with standard care by reducing ICU days. Further efforts to improve recovery time with remdesivir and dexamethasone in ICUs could save lives and costs in South Africa.

12.
medRxiv ; 2020 Sep 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-807378

ABSTRACT

Background South Africa recently experienced a first peak in COVID-19 cases and mortality. Dexamethasone and remdesivir both have the potential to reduce COVID-related mortality, but their cost-effectiveness in a resource-limited setting with scant intensive care resources is unknown. Methods We projected intensive care unit (ICU) needs and capacity from August 2020 to January 2021 using the South African National COVID-19 Epi Model. We assessed cost-effectiveness of 1) administration of dexamethasone to ventilated patients and remdesivir to non-ventilated patients, 2) dexamethasone alone to both non-ventilated and ventilated patients, 3) remdesivir to non-ventilated patients only, and 4) dexamethasone to ventilated patients only; all relative to a scenario of standard care. We estimated costs from the healthcare system perspective in 2020 USD, deaths averted, and the incremental cost effectiveness ratios of each scenario. Results Remdesivir for non-ventilated patients and dexamethasone for ventilated patients was estimated to result in 1,111 deaths averted (assuming a 0-30% efficacy of remdesivir) compared to standard care, and save $11.5 million. The result was driven by the efficacy of the drugs, and the reduction of ICU-time required for patients treated with remdesivir. The scenario of dexamethasone alone to ventilated and non-ventilated patients requires additional $159,000 and averts 1,146 deaths, resulting in $139 per death averted, relative to standard care. Conclusions The use of dexamethasone for ventilated and remdesivir for non-ventilated patients is likely to be cost-saving compared to standard care. Given the economic and health benefits of both drugs, efforts to ensure access to these medications is paramount.

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