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1.
Lancet ; 400(10346): 97-103, 2022 07 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1921470

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: By April 13, 2022, more than 4 months after the approval of BNT162b2 (Pfizer-BioNTech) for children, less than 40% of 5-11-year-olds in Italy had been vaccinated against COVID-19. Estimating how effective vaccination is in 5-11-year-olds in the current epidemiological context dominated by the omicron variant (B.1.1.529) is important to inform public health bodies in defining vaccination policies and strategies. METHODS: In this retrospective population analysis, we assessed vaccine effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19, defined as an infection leading to hospitalisation or death, by linking the national COVID-19 surveillance system and the national vaccination registry. All Italian children aged 5-11 years without a previous diagnosis of infection were eligible for inclusion and were followed up from Jan 17 to April 13, 2022. All children with inconsistent vaccination data, diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 infection before the start date of the study or without information on the municipality of residence were excluded from the analysis. With unvaccinated children as the reference group, we estimated vaccine effectiveness in those who were partly vaccinated (one dose) and those who were fully vaccinated (two doses). FINDINGS: By April 13, 2022, 1 063 035 (35·8%) of the 2 965 918 children aged 5-11 years included in the study had received two doses of the vaccine, 134 386 (4·5%) children had received one dose only, and 1 768 497 (59·6%) were unvaccinated. During the study period, 766 756 cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection and 644 cases of severe COVID-19 (627 hospitalisations, 15 admissions to intensive care units, and two deaths) were notified. Overall, vaccine effectiveness in the fully vaccinated group was 29·4% (95% CI 28·5-30·2) against SARS-CoV-2 infection and 41·1% (22·2-55·4) against severe COVID-19, whereas vaccine effectiveness in the partly vaccinated group was 27·4% (26·4-28·4) against SARS-CoV-2 infection and 38·1% (20·9-51·5) against severe COVID-19. Vaccine effectiveness against infection peaked at 38·7% (37·7-39·7) at 0-14 days after full vaccination and decreased to 21·2% (19·7-22·7) at 43-84 days after full vaccination. INTERPRETATION: Vaccination against COVID-19 in children aged 5-11 years in Italy showed a lower effectiveness in preventing SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19 than in individuals aged 12 years and older. Effectiveness against infection appears to decrease after completion of the current primary vaccination cycle. FUNDING: None. TRANSLATION: For the Italian translation of the summary see Supplementary Materials section.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Viral Vaccines , BNT162 Vaccine , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Child , Humans , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Euro Surveill ; 27(20)2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1862542

ABSTRACT

We explored the risk factors associated with SARS-CoV-2 reinfections in Italy between August 2021 and March 2022. Regardless of the prevalent virus variant, being unvaccinated was the most relevant risk factor for reinfection. The risk of reinfection increased almost 18-fold following emergence of the Omicron variant compared with Delta. A severe first SARS-CoV-2 infection and age over 60 years were significant risk factors for severe reinfection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Middle Aged , Protective Factors , Reinfection
4.
Expert Rev Vaccines ; 21(7): 975-982, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1778823

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Consolidated information on the effectiveness of COVID-19 booster vaccination in Europe are scarce. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: We assessed the effectiveness of a booster dose of an mRNA vaccine against any SARS-CoV-2 infection (symptomatic or asymptomatic) and severe COVID-19 (hospitalization or death) after over two months from administration among priority target groups (n = 18,524,568) during predominant circulation of the Delta variant in Italy (July-December 2021). RESULTS: Vaccine effectiveness (VE) against SARS-CoV-2 infection and, to a lesser extent, against severe COVID-19, among people ≥60 years and other high-risk groups (i.e. healthcare workers, residents in long-term-care facilities, and persons with comorbidities or immunocompromised), peaked in the time-interval 3-13 weeks (VE against infection = 67.2%, 95% confidence interval (CI): 62.5-71.3; VE against severe disease = 89.5%, 95% CI: 86.1-92.0) and then declined, waning 26 weeks after full primary vaccination (VE against infection = 12.2%, 95% CI: -4.7-26.4; VE against severe disease = 65.3%, 95% CI: 50.3-75.8). After 3-10 weeks from the administration of a booster dose, VE against infection and severe disease increased to 76.1% (95% CI: 70.4-80.7) and 93.0% (95% CI: 90.2-95.0), respectively. CONCLUSIONS: These results support the ongoing vaccination campaign in Italy, where the administration of a booster dose four months after completion of primary vaccination is recommended.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccines, Synthetic , mRNA Vaccines
5.
EuropePMC;
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-327217

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 variant of concern Omicron was first detected in Italy in November 2021. Data from three genomic surveys conducted in Italy between December 2021 and January 2022 suggest that Omicron became dominant in less than one month (prevalence on January 3: 78.6%-83.8%) with a doubling time of 2.7-3.1 days. The mean net reproduction number rose from about 1.15 in absence of Omicron to a peak of 1.83 for symptomatic cases and 1.33 for hospitalized cases, while it remained stable for critical cases.

6.
Euro Surveill ; 26(47)2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1538333

ABSTRACT

We assessed the impact of COVID-19 vaccination in Italy, by estimating numbers of averted COVID-19 cases, hospitalisations, ICU admissions and deaths between January and September 2021, by age group and geographical macro areas. Timing and speed of vaccination programme implementation varied slightly between geographical areas, particularly for older adults. We estimated that 445,193 (17% of expected; range: 331,059-616,054) cases, 79,152 (32%; range: 53,209-148,756) hospitalisations, 9,839 ICU admissions (29%; range: 6,434-16,276) and 22,067 (38%; range: 13,571-48,026) deaths were prevented by vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Aged , Hospitalization , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Italy/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
7.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 4570, 2021 07 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1328847

ABSTRACT

To counter the second COVID-19 wave in autumn 2020, the Italian government introduced a system of physical distancing measures organized in progressively restrictive tiers (coded as yellow, orange, and red) imposed on a regional basis according to real-time epidemiological risk assessments. We leverage the data from the Italian COVID-19 integrated surveillance system and publicly available mobility data to evaluate the impact of the three-tiered regional restriction system on human activities, SARS-CoV-2 transmissibility and hospitalization burden in Italy. The individuals' attendance to locations outside the residential settings was progressively reduced with tiers, but less than during the national lockdown against the first COVID-19 wave in the spring. The reproduction number R(t) decreased below the epidemic threshold in 85 out of 107 provinces after the introduction of the tier system, reaching average values of about 0.95-1.02 in the yellow tier, 0.80-0.93 in the orange tier and 0.74-0.83 in the red tier. We estimate that the reduced transmissibility resulted in averting about 36% of the hospitalizations between November 6 and November 25, 2020. These results are instrumental to inform public health efforts aimed at preventing future resurgence of cases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
8.
Vaccine ; 39(34): 4788-4792, 2021 08 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1301034

ABSTRACT

In Italy, the COVID-19 vaccination campaign started in December 2020 with the vaccination of healthcare workers (HCW). To analyse the real-life impact that vaccination is having on this population group, we measured the association between week of diagnosis and HCW status using log-binomial regression. By the week 22-28 March, we observed a 74% reduction (PPR 0.26; 95% CI 0.22-0.29) in the proportion of cases reported as HCW and 81% reduction in the proportion of symptomatic cases reported as HCW, compared with the week with the lowest proportion of cases among HCWs prior to the vaccination campaign (31 August-7 September). The reduction, both in relative and absolute terms, of COVID-19 cases in HCWs that started around 30 days after the start of the vaccination campaign suggest that COVID-19 vaccines are being effective in preventing infection in this group.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Health Personnel , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
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