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Curr HIV/AIDS Rep ; 19(1): 26-36, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1605375


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: We describe the impact of COVID-19 on PEPFAR programs in Africa and how PEPFAR adapted and leveraged its interventions to the changing landscape of the COVID-19 pandemic. RECENT FINDINGS: To mitigate the potential impact of COVID-19 on the HIV response and protect the gains, continuity of treatment was the guiding principle regarding the provision of services in PEPFAR-supported countries. As the COVID-19 pandemic matured, PEPFAR's approach evolved from a strictly "protect and salvage" approach to a "restore and accelerate" approach that embraced innovative adaptations in service and "person-centered" care. The impact of service delivery interruptions caused by COVID-19 on progress towards HIV epidemic control in PEPFAR-supported African countries remains undetermined. With COVID vaccine coverage many months away and more transmissible variants being reported, Africa may experience more pandemic surges. HIV programs will depend on nimble and innovative adaptations in prevention and treatment services in order to advance epidemic control objectives.

COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Africa/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Humans , International Cooperation , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(36): 1249-1254, 2021 09 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436412


Although COVID-19 generally results in milder disease in children and adolescents than in adults, severe illness from COVID-19 can occur in children and adolescents and might require hospitalization and intensive care unit (ICU) support (1-3). It is not known whether the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant,* which has been the predominant variant of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) in the United States since late June 2021,† causes different clinical outcomes in children and adolescents compared with variants that circulated earlier. To assess trends among children and adolescents, CDC analyzed new COVID-19 cases, emergency department (ED) visits with a COVID-19 diagnosis code, and hospital admissions of patients with confirmed COVID-19 among persons aged 0-17 years during August 1, 2020-August 27, 2021. Since July 2021, after Delta had become the predominant circulating variant, the rate of new COVID-19 cases and COVID-19-related ED visits increased for persons aged 0-4, 5-11, and 12-17 years, and hospital admissions of patients with confirmed COVID-19 increased for persons aged 0-17 years. Among persons aged 0-17 years during the most recent 2-week period (August 14-27, 2021), COVID-19-related ED visits and hospital admissions in the states with the lowest vaccination coverage were 3.4 and 3.7 times that in the states with the highest vaccination coverage, respectively. At selected hospitals, the proportion of COVID-19 patients aged 0-17 years who were admitted to an ICU ranged from 10% to 25% during August 2020-June 2021 and was 20% and 18% during July and August 2021, respectively. Broad, community-wide vaccination of all eligible persons is a critical component of mitigation strategies to protect pediatric populations from SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19 illness.

COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Emergency Service, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Facilities and Services Utilization/trends , Hospitalization/trends , Adolescent , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Child , Child, Preschool , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Severity of Illness Index , United States/epidemiology , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data
J Int AIDS Soc ; 23(8): e25587, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-641138


INTRODUCTION: The COVID-19 pandemic reached the African continent in less than three months from when the first cases were reported from mainland China. As COVID-19 preparedness and response plans were rapidly instituted across sub-Saharan Africa, many governments and donor organizations braced themselves for the unknown impact the COVID-19 pandemic would have in under-resourced settings with high burdens of PLHIV. The potential negative impact of COVID-19 in these countries is uncertain, but is estimated to contribute both directly and indirectly to the morbidity and mortality of PLHIV, requiring countries to leverage existing HIV care systems to propel COVID-19 responses, while safeguarding PLHIV and HIV programme gains. In anticipation of COVID-19-related disruptions, PEPFAR promptly established guidance to rapidly adapt HIV programmes to maintain essential HIV services while protecting recipients of care and staff from COVID-19. This commentary reviews PEPFAR's COVID-19 technical guidance and provides country-specific examples of programme adaptions in sub-Saharan Africa. DISCUSSION: The COVID-19 pandemic may pose significant risks to the continuity of HIV services, especially in countries with high HIV prevalence and weak and over-burdened health systems. Although there is currently limited understanding of how COVID-19 affects PLHIV, it is imperative that public health systems and academic centres monitor the impact of COVID-19 on PLHIV. The general principles of the HIV programme adaptation guidance from PEPFAR prioritize protecting the gains in the HIV response while minimizing in-person home and facility visits and other direct contact when COVID-19 control measures are in effect. PEPFAR-supported clinical, laboratory, supply chain, community and data reporting systems can play an important role in mitigating the impact of COVID-19 in sub-Saharan Africa. CONCLUSIONS: As community transmission of COVID-19 continues and the number of country cases rise, fragile health systems may be strained. Utilizing the adaptive, data-driven programme approaches in facilities and communities established and supported by PEPFAR provides the opportunity to strengthen the COVID-19 response while protecting the immense gains spanning HIV prevention, testing and treatment reached thus far.

Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/complications , Delivery of Health Care , HIV Infections/complications , Pneumonia, Viral/complications , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/complications , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/drug therapy , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/epidemiology , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/mortality , Africa South of the Sahara/epidemiology , COVID-19 , China , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Cost of Illness , Delivery of Health Care/economics , Delivery of Health Care/standards , Delivery of Health Care/statistics & numerical data , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/mortality , Humans , International Cooperation , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2