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1.
Aging Clin Exp Res ; 2022 Jul 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1920348

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: There is a paucity of the literature on the relationship between frailty and excess mortality due to the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: The entire community-dwelling adult population of Ontario, Canada, as of January 1st, 2018, was identified using the Cardiovascular Health in Ambulatory Care Research Team (CANHEART) cohort. Residents of long-term care facilities were excluded. Frailty was categorized through the Johns Hopkins Adjusted Clinical Groups (ACG® System) frailty indicator. Follow-up was until December 31st, 2020, with March 11th, 2020, indicating the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using multivariable Cox models with patient age as the timescale, we determined the relationship between frailty status and pandemic period on all-cause mortality. We evaluated the modifier effect of frailty using both stratified models as well as incorporating an interaction between frailty and the pandemic period. RESULTS: We identified 11,481,391 persons in our cohort, of whom 3.2% were frail based on the ACG indicator. Crude mortality increased from 0.75 to 0.87% per 100 person years from the pre- to post-pandemic period, translating to ~ 13,800 excess deaths among the community-dwelling adult population of Ontario (HR 1.11 95% CI 1.09-1.11). Frailty was associated with a statistically significant increase in all-cause mortality (HR 3.02, 95% CI 2.99-3.06). However, all-cause mortality increased similarly during the pandemic in frail (aHR 1.13, 95% CI 1.09-1.16) and non-frail (aHR 1.15, 95% CI 1.13-1.17) persons. CONCLUSION: Although frailty was associated with greater mortality, frailty did not modify the excess mortality associated with the pandemic.

2.
CJC Open ; 2022 Jun 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1906888

ABSTRACT

Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) has resulted in a reduction in patients seeking timely consultations for non-Covid-19 related illnesses. Previously, we have reported a decline in acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF) related emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic versus 2019. We aimed to determine the consequences of these early trends on ADHF-patient morbidity and mortality. Methods: We compared consecutive patients presenting with ADHF to 3 academic medical centres in Toronto, Canada from March 1-September 28, 2020, versus the same time period in 2019. We used multivariate logistic regression models to evaluate whether the odds of hospitalization after presenting to the ED, recurrent ED visits or readmission in 30-days, and in-hospital all-cause mortality differed by timeframe. Results: During the Covid-19 pandemic, we observed a lower total number of patients presenting to hospital with ADHF, as compared to 2019. Despite this, the probability of being admitted to hospital did not differ among patients seen in 2020 versus 2019. Among ADHF patients admitted to hospital, however, we observed a significantly higher proportion of patients being admitted to the ICU and a relative 66% increase in in-hospital mortality during the 2020 Covid-19 era as compared to 2019. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that improved messaging may be needed for patients living with chronic health conditions, including HF during the pandemic, to educate and encourage patients to present to hospital services when in need.

3.
Canadian Medical Association. Journal ; 194(19):E666-E673, 2022.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1848964

ABSTRACT

Background: The frequency of readmissions after COVID-19 hospitalizations is uncertain, as is whether current readmission prediction equations are useful for discharge risk stratification of COVID-19 survivors or for comparing among hospitals. We sought to determine the frequency and predictors of death or unplanned readmission after a COVID-19 hospital discharge. Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of all adults (> 18 yr) who were discharged alive from hospital after a nonpsychiatric, nonobstetric, acute care admission for COVID-19 between Jan. 1, 2020, and Sept. 30, 2021, in Alberta and Ontario. Results: Of 843 737 individuals who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction during the study period, 46 412 (5.5%) were adults admitted to hospital within 14 days of their positive test. Of these, 8496 died in hospital and 34 846 were discharged alive (30 336 discharged after an index admission of < 30 d and 4510 discharged after an admission > 30 d). One in 9 discharged patients died or were readmitted within 30 days after discharge (3173 [10.5%] of those with stay < 30 d and 579 [12.8%] of those with stay > 30 d). The LACE score (length of stay, acuity, Charlson Comorbidity Index and number of emergency visits in previous 6 months) for predicting urgent readmission or death within 30 days had a c-statistic of 0.60 in Alberta and 0.61 in Ontario;inclusion of sex, discharge locale, deprivation index and teaching hospital status in the model improved the c-statistic to 0.73. Interpretation: Death or readmission after discharge from a COVID-19 hospitalization is common and had a similar frequency in Alberta and Ontario. Risk stratification and interinstitutional comparisons of outcomes after hospital admission for COVID-19 should include sex, discharge locale and socioeconomic measures, in addition to the LACE variables.

4.
CMAJ ; 194(19): E666-E673, 2022 05 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1846948

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The frequency of readmissions after COVID-19 hospitalizations is uncertain, as is whether current readmission prediction equations are useful for discharge risk stratification of COVID-19 survivors or for comparing among hospitals. We sought to determine the frequency and predictors of death or unplanned readmission after a COVID-19 hospital discharge. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of all adults (≥ 18 yr) who were discharged alive from hospital after a nonpsychiatric, nonobstetric, acute care admission for COVID-19 between Jan. 1, 2020, and Sept. 30, 2021, in Alberta and Ontario. RESULTS: Of 843 737 individuals who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction during the study period, 46 412 (5.5%) were adults admitted to hospital within 14 days of their positive test. Of these, 8496 died in hospital and 34 846 were discharged alive (30 336 discharged after an index admission of ≤ 30 d and 4510 discharged after an admission > 30 d). One in 9 discharged patients died or were readmitted within 30 days after discharge (3173 [10.5%] of those with stay ≤ 30 d and 579 [12.8%] of those with stay > 30 d). The LACE score (length of stay, acuity, Charlson Comorbidity Index and number of emergency visits in previous 6 months) for predicting urgent readmission or death within 30 days had a c-statistic of 0.60 in Alberta and 0.61 in Ontario; inclusion of sex, discharge locale, deprivation index and teaching hospital status in the model improved the c-statistic to 0.73. INTERPRETATION: Death or readmission after discharge from a COVID-19 hospitalization is common and had a similar frequency in Alberta and Ontario. Risk stratification and interinstitutional comparisons of outcomes after hospital admission for COVID-19 should include sex, discharge locale and socioeconomic measures, in addition to the LACE variables.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Patient Readmission , Adult , Alberta/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Comorbidity , Emergency Service, Hospital , Hospitalization , Humans , Length of Stay , Ontario/epidemiology , Patient Discharge , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2
5.
CJC Open ; 4(5): 479-487, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1800144

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has reduced access to endomyocardial biopsy (EMB) rejection surveillance in heart transplant (HT) recipients. This study is the first in Canada to assess the role for noninvasive rejection surveillance in personalizing titration of immunosuppression and patient satisfaction post-HT. Methods: In this mixed-methods prospective cohort study, adult HT recipients more than 6 months from HT had their routine EMBs replaced by noninvasive rejection surveillance with gene expression profiling (GEP) and donor-derived cell-free DNA (dd-cfDNA) testing. Demographics, outcomes of noninvasive surveillance score, hospital admissions, patient satisfaction, and health status on the medical outcomes study 12-item short-form health survey (SF-12) were collected and analyzed, using t tests and χ2 tests. Thematic qualitative analysis was performed for open-ended responses. Results: Among 90 patients, 31 (33%) were enrolled. A total of 36 combined GEP/dd-cfDNA tests were performed; 22 (61%) had negative results for both, 10 (27%) had positive GEP/negative dd-cfDNA results, 4 (11%) had negative GEP/positive dd-cfDNA results, and 0 were positive on both. All patients with a positive dd-cfDNA result (range: 0.19%-0.81%) underwent EMB with no significant cellular or antibody-mediated rejection. A total of 15 cases (42%) had immunosuppression reduction, and this increased to 55% in patients with negative concordant testing. Overall, patients' reported satisfaction was 90%, and on thematic analysis they were more satisfied, with less anxiety, during the noninvasive testing experience. Conclusions: Noninvasive rejection surveillance was associated with the ability to lower immunosuppression, increase satisfaction, and reduce anxiety in HT recipients, minimizing exposure for patients and providers during a global pandemic.


Contexte: La pandémie de COVID-19 a réduit l'accès à la biopsie endomyocardique pour surveiller le risque de rejet après une greffe du cœur. Cette étude est la première à être menée au Canada pour évaluer le rôle de la surveillance non invasive du risque de rejet en personnalisant le titrage de l'immunosuppression et la satisfaction du patient après la greffe cardiaque. Méthodologie: Dans le cadre de cette étude de cohorte prospective à méthodes mixtes, des adultes ayant reçu une greffe cardiaque depuis plus de six mois ont vu leurs biopsies endomyocardiques régulières remplacées par une surveillance non invasive du risque de rejet qui consiste à établir le profil de l'expression génique et à analyser l'ADN acellulaire dérivé du donneur. Les données démographiques, les résultats du score de surveillance non invasive, les admissions à l'hôpital, la satisfaction des patients et l'état de santé tirés du questionnaire SF-12 (questionnaire abrégé sur la santé comprenant 12 items) de l'étude sur les issues médicales ont été colligés et analysés au moyen des tests T et des tests χ2. Les réponses ouvertes ont fait l'objet d'une analyse qualitative thématique. Résultats: Parmi 90 patients, 31 (33 %) ont été recrutés. Au total, 36 tests combinés de profilages de l'expression génique et d'ADN acellulaire dérivé du donneur ont été réalisés; les résultats ont été négatifs pour les deux tests dans 22 cas (61 %), positifs pour le profilage de l'expression génique et négatifs pour l'ADN acellulaire dans 10 cas (27 %), négatifs pour le profilage de l'expression génique et positifs pour l'ADN acellulaire dans quatre cas (11 %) et aucun cas n'a donné de résultats positifs pour les deux types de tests. Tous les patients qui ont donné des résultats positifs à l'analyse de l'ADN acellulaire dérivé du donneur (fourchette : 0,19 % à 0,81 %) ont subi une biopsie endomyocardique n'ayant révélé aucun rejet cellulaire ou à médiation par anticorps important. Au total, 15 cas (42 %) affichaient une immunosuppression réduite, proportion qui a grimpé à 55 % chez les patients dont les tests de concordance ont donné des résultats négatifs. Dans l'ensemble, le niveau de satisfaction rapporté par les patients était de 90 % et, à l'analyse thématique, ils étaient plus satisfaits et moins anxieux pendant les tests non invasifs. Conclusions: La surveillance non invasive du risque de rejet a été associée à la capacité de diminuer l'immunosuppression, d'augmenter la satisfaction et de réduire l'anxiété chez les patients qui ont reçu une greffe cardiaque, en plus de réduire l'exposition des patients et du personnel médical dans le contexte d'une pandémie.

6.
Lancet ; 399(10333): 1391-1400, 2022 04 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1795992

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Dietary restriction of sodium has been suggested to prevent fluid overload and adverse outcomes for patients with heart failure. We designed the Study of Dietary Intervention under 100 mmol in Heart Failure (SODIUM-HF) to test whether or not a reduction in dietary sodium reduces the incidence of future clinical events. METHODS: SODIUM-HF is an international, open-label, randomised, controlled trial that enrolled patients at 26 sites in six countries (Australia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and New Zealand). Eligible patients were aged 18 years or older, with chronic heart failure (New York Heart Association [NYHA] functional class 2-3), and receiving optimally tolerated guideline-directed medical treatment. Patients were randomly assigned (1:1), using a standard number generator and varying block sizes of two, four, or six, stratified by site, to either usual care according to local guidelines or a low sodium diet of less than 100 mmol (ie, <1500 mg/day). The primary outcome was the composite of cardiovascular-related admission to hospital, cardiovascular-related emergency department visit, or all-cause death within 12 months in the intention-to-treat (ITT) population (ie, all randomly assigned patients). Safety was assessed in the ITT population. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT02012179, and is closed to accrual. FINDINGS: Between March 24, 2014, and Dec 9, 2020, 806 patients were randomly assigned to a low sodium diet (n=397) or usual care (n=409). Median age was 67 years (IQR 58-74) and 268 (33%) were women and 538 (66%) were men. Between baseline and 12 months, the median sodium intake decreased from 2286 mg/day (IQR 1653-3005) to 1658 mg/day (1301-2189) in the low sodium group and from 2119 mg/day (1673-2804) to 2073 mg/day (1541-2900) in the usual care group. By 12 months, events comprising the primary outcome had occurred in 60 (15%) of 397 patients in the low sodium diet group and 70 (17%) of 409 in the usual care group (hazard ratio [HR] 0·89 [95% CI 0·63-1·26]; p=0·53). All-cause death occurred in 22 (6%) patients in the low sodium diet group and 17 (4%) in the usual care group (HR 1·38 [0·73-2·60]; p=0·32), cardiovascular-related hospitalisation occurred in 40 (10%) patients in the low sodium diet group and 51 (12%) patients in the usual care group (HR 0·82 [0·54-1·24]; p=0·36), and cardiovascular-related emergency department visits occurred in 17 (4%) patients in the low sodium diet group and 15 (4%) patients in the usual care group (HR 1·21 [0·60-2·41]; p=0·60). No safety events related to the study treatment were reported in either group. INTERPRETATION: In ambulatory patients with heart failure, a dietary intervention to reduce sodium intake did not reduce clinical events. FUNDING: Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the University Hospital Foundation, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and Health Research Council of New Zealand.


Subject(s)
Heart Failure , Sodium, Dietary , Aged , Canada , Female , Heart Failure/drug therapy , Humans , Male , Sodium , Treatment Outcome
7.
Health Policy OPEN ; : 100069, 2022.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-1778164

ABSTRACT

In 2006, the U.S. federal government launched a project to create a cheap, easily produced, and easy to use ventilator that could be stored for long periods of time for pandemic response. Despite successful funding and contracts with two separate medical device companies, not a single ventilator had been added to the stockpile by 2020. The company currently under federal contract for these ventilators is selling its product to private parties, rather than supplying it to the federal government. In the current crisis, government has instead turned to the Defense Production Act to supply ventilators. Inaccessibility of medical equipment is a detriment to Americans’ health, particularly during a public health emergency like COVID-19. This persists despite the central role of the federal government in the funding of healthcare innovation. We place the shortage of ventilators in context of the ongoing debate about the federal government’s intellectual property powers, as well as the legal recourses available, then discuss why this situation is a strong argument for expanding compulsory licensing powers as a component of federal policy.

8.
Can J Cardiol ; 38(2): 279-291, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1604002

ABSTRACT

While COVID-19 is still ongoing and associated with more than 5 million deaths, the scope and speed of advances over the past year in terms of scientific discovery, data dissemination, and technology have been staggering. It is not a matter of "if" but "when" we will face the next pandemic, and how we leverage technology and data management effectively to create flexible ecosystems that facilitate collaboration, equitable care, and innovation will determine its severity and scale. The aim of this review is to address emerging challenges that came to light during the pandemic in health care and innovations that enabled us to adapt and continue to care for patients. The pandemic highlighted the need for seismic shifts in care paradigms and technology with considerations related to the digital divide and health literacy for digital health interventions to reach full potential and improve health outcomes. We discuss advances in telemedicine, remote patient monitoring, and emerging wearable technologies. Despite the promise of digital health, we emphasise the importance of addressing its limitations, including interpretation challenges, accuracy of findings, and artificial intelligence-driven algorithms. We summarise the most recent recommendation of the Virtual Care Task Force to scaling virtual medical services in Canada. Finally, we propose a model for optimal implementation of health digital innovations with 5 tenets including data management, data security, digital biomarkers, useful artificial intelligence, and clinical integration.


Subject(s)
Biomedical Technology , Civil Defense/methods , Telemedicine/methods , Artificial Intelligence , Biomedical Technology/standards , Biomedical Technology/trends , COVID-19/epidemiology , Digital Technology , Humans , Quality Improvement , SARS-CoV-2
9.
Am J Public Health ; 112(1): 38-42, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1594448

ABSTRACT

We conducted a community seroprevalence survey in Arizona, from September 12 to October 1, 2020, to determine the presence of antibodies to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). We used the seroprevalence estimate to predict SARS-CoV-2 infections in the jurisdiction by applying the adjusted seroprevalence to the county's population. The estimated community seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infections was 4.3 times greater (95% confidence interval = 2.2, 7.5) than the number of reported cases. Field surveys with representative sampling provide data that may help fill in gaps in traditional public health reporting. (Am J Public Health. 2022;112(1):38-42. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2021.306568).


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Arizona/epidemiology , Child , Family Characteristics , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Public Health Practice , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies
11.
JMIR Cardio ; 5(1): e25277, 2021 May 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217018

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Virtual care has historically faced barriers to widespread adoption. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated the rapid adoption and expansion of virtual care technologies. Although the intense and prolonged nature of the COVID-19 pandemic has renewed people's interest in health systems resilience, which includes how services adapt or transform in response to shocks, evidence regarding the role of virtual care technologies in health systems resilience is scarce. OBJECTIVE: At Toronto General Hospital in Ontario, Canada, the rapid virtualization of cardiac care began on March 9, 2020, as a response to the pandemic. The objective of this study was to understand people's experiences with and the barriers and facilitators of the rapid virtualization and expansion of cardiac care resulting from the pandemic. METHODS: A single-case study was conducted with 3 embedded units of analysis. Patients, clinicians, and staff were recruited purposively from an existing mobile, phone-based telemonitoring program at a heart function clinic in Toronto, Canada. Individual, semistructured phone interviews were conducted by two researchers and transcribed verbatim. An inductive thematic analysis at the semantic level was used to analyze transcripts and develop themes. RESULTS: A total of 29 participants were interviewed, including patients (n=16), clinicians (n=9), and staff (n=4). The following five themes were identified: (1) patient safety as a catalyst for virtual care adoption; (2) piecemeal virtual care solutions; (3) confronting new roles and workloads; (4) missing pieces in virtual care; and (5) the inequity paradox. The motivation to protect patient safety and a piecemeal approach to virtual care adoption facilitated the absorptive and adaptive resilience of cardiac care during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, ad hoc changes to clinic roles and workflows, challenges in building relationships through remote methods, and widened inequities were barriers that threatened virtual care sustainment. CONCLUSIONS: We contend that sustaining virtual care hinges upon transformative actions (rather than adaptive actions) that strengthen health systems so that they can face the dynamic and emergent challenges associated with COVID-19 and other shocks. Based on the barriers and facilitators we identified, we present the lessons we learned and recommend transformations for sustaining virtual care during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

12.
Health Expect ; 24(3): 978-990, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1153493

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Waiting for procedures delayed by COVID-19 may cause anxiety and related adverse consequences. OBJECTIVE: To synthesize research on the mental health impact of waiting and patient-centred mitigation strategies that could be applied in the COVID-19 context. METHODS: Using a scoping review approach, we searched 9 databases for studies on waiting lists and mental health and reported study characteristics, impacts and intervention attributes and outcomes. RESULTS: We included 51 studies that focussed on organ transplant (60.8%), surgery (21.6%) or cancer management (13.7%). Most patients and caregivers reported anxiety, depression and poor quality of life, which deteriorated with increasing wait time. The impact of waiting on mental health was greater among women and new immigrants, and those of younger age, lower socio-economic status, or with less-positive coping ability. Six studies evaluated educational strategies to develop coping skills: 2 reduced depression (2 did not), 1 reduced anxiety (2 did not) and 2 improved quality of life (2 did not). In contrast, patients desired acknowledgement of concerns, peer support, and periodic communication about wait-list position, prioritization criteria and anticipated procedure date. CONCLUSIONS: Findings revealed patient-centred strategies to alleviate the mental health impact of waiting for procedures. Ongoing research should explore how to optimize the impact of those strategies for diverse patients and caregivers, particularly in the COVID-19 context. PATIENT OR PUBLIC CONTRIBUTION: Six patients and four caregivers waiting for COVID-19-delayed procedures helped to establish eligibility criteria, plan data extraction and review a draft and final report.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Caregivers/psychology , Pandemics , Patient-Centered Care , Waiting Lists , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Mental Health , Quality of Life , SARS-CoV-2
13.
CMAJ ; 192(46): E1493, 2020 11 16.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1041370
14.
J Med Internet Res ; 23(1): e26165, 2021 01 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1030360

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To minimize the spread and risk of a COVID-19 outbreak, societal norms have been challenged with respect to how essential services are delivered. With pressures to reduce the number of in-person ambulatory visits, innovative models of telemonitoring have been used during the pandemic as a necessary alternative to support access to care for patients with chronic conditions. The pandemic has led health care organizations to consider the adoption of telemonitoring interventions for the first time, while others have seen existing programs rapidly expand. OBJECTIVE: At the Toronto General Hospital in Ontario, Canada, the rapid expansion of a telemonitoring program began on March 9, 2020, in response to COVID-19. The objective of this study was to understand the experiences related to the expanded role of a telemonitoring program under the changing conditions of the pandemic. METHODS: A single-case qualitative study was conducted with 3 embedded units of analysis. Semistructured interviews probed the experiences of patients, clinicians, and program staff from the Medly telemonitoring program at a heart function clinic in Toronto, Canada. Data were analyzed using inductive thematic analysis as well as Eakin and Gladstone's value-adding approach to enhance the analytic interpretation of the study findings. RESULTS: A total of 29 participants were interviewed, including patients (n=16), clinicians (n=9), and operational staff (n=4). Four themes were identified: (1) providing care continuity through telemonitoring; (2) adapting telemonitoring operations for a more virtual health care system; (3) confronting virtual workflow challenges; and (4) fostering a meaningful patient-provider relationship. Beyond supporting virtual visits, the program's ability to provide a more comprehensive picture of the patient's health was valued. However, issues relating to the lack of system integration and alert-driven interactions jeopardized the perceived sustainability of the program. CONCLUSIONS: With the reduction of in-person visits during the pandemic, virtual services such as telemonitoring have demonstrated significant value. Based on our study findings, we offer recommendations to proactively adapt and scale telemonitoring programs under the changing conditions of an increasingly virtual health care system. These include revisiting the scope and expectations of telemedicine interventions, streamlining virtual patient onboarding processes, and personalizing the collection of patient information to build a stronger virtual relationship and a more holistic assessment of patient well-being.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Heart Failure/diagnosis , Heart Failure/physiopathology , Monitoring, Physiologic/methods , Monitoring, Physiologic/trends , Telemedicine/methods , Telemedicine/trends , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/prevention & control , Continuity of Patient Care/trends , Disease Outbreaks , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Ontario/epidemiology , Pandemics , Young Adult
15.
PLoS One ; 15(12): e0242588, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-954386

ABSTRACT

Beginning in March 2020, the United States emerged as the global epicenter for COVID-19 cases with little to guide policy response in the absence of extensive data available for reliable epidemiological modeling in the early phases of the pandemic. In the ensuing weeks, American jurisdictions attempted to manage disease spread on a regional basis using non-pharmaceutical interventions (i.e., social distancing), as uneven disease burden across the expansive geography of the United States exerted different implications for policy management in different regions. While Arizona policymakers relied initially on state-by-state national modeling projections from different groups outside of the state, we sought to create a state-specific model using a mathematical framework that ties disease surveillance with the future burden on Arizona's healthcare system. Our framework uses a compartmental system dynamics model using a SEIRD framework that accounts for multiple types of disease manifestations for the COVID-19 infection, as well as the observed time delay in epidemiological findings following public policy enactments. We use a compartment initialization logic coupled with a fitting technique to construct projections for key metrics to guide public health policy, including exposures, infections, hospitalizations, and deaths under a variety of social reopening scenarios. Our approach makes use of X-factor fitting and backcasting methods to construct meaningful and reliable models with minimal available data in order to provide timely policy guidance in the early phases of a pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Services Needs and Demand/statistics & numerical data , Arizona/epidemiology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/therapy , Hospitals/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Models, Statistical , Pandemics , Policy , Quarantine/statistics & numerical data
16.
Can J Cardiol ; 36(10): 1680-1684, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-653932

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has resulted in public health measures and health care reconfigurations likely to have impact on chronic disease care. We aimed to assess the volume and characteristics of patients presenting to hospitals with acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF) during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic compared with a time-matched 2019 cohort. Patients presenting to hospitals with ADHF from March 1, to April 19, 2020 and 2019 in an urban hospital were examined. Multivariable logistic-regression models were used to evaluate the difference in probability of ADHF-related hospitalization between the 2 years. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a total of 1106 emergency department (ED) visits for dyspnea or peripheral edema were recorded, compared with 800 ED visits in 2019. A decrease in ADHF-related ED visits of 43.5% (14.8%-79.4%, P = 0.002) and ADHF-related admissions of 39.3% (8.6%-78.5%, P = 0.009) was observed compared with 2019. Patients with ADHF presenting to hospitals (n = 128) were similar in age, sex, and comorbidities compared with the 2019 cohort (n = 186); however, a higher proportion had recent diagnoses of heart failure. Upon ED presentation, the relative probability of hospitalization or admission to intensive care was not statistically different. There was a trend toward higher in-hospital mortality in 2020. The decline in ADHF-related hospitalizations raises the timely question of how patients with heart failure are managing beyond the acute-care setting and reinforces the need for public education on the availability and safety of emergency services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Emergency Service, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Heart Failure/epidemiology , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Patient Admission/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Hospitals/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Ontario/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Urban Population/statistics & numerical data
19.
Can J Cardiol ; 36(7): 1144-1147, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-269203

ABSTRACT

Lung ultrasound (LUS) is a point-of-care ultrasound technique used for its portability, widespread availability, and ability to provide real-time diagnostic information and procedural guidance. LUS outperforms lung auscultation and chest X-ray, and it is an alternative to chest computed tomography in selected cases. Cardiologists may enhance their physical and echocardiographic examination with the addition of LUS. We present a practical guide to LUS, including device selection, scanning, findings, and interpretation. We outline a 3-point scanning protocol using 2-dimensional and M-mode imaging to evaluate the pleural line, pleural space, and parenchyma. We describe LUS findings and interpretation for common causes of respiratory failure. We provide guidance specific of COVID-19, which at the time of writing is a global pandemic. In this context, LUS emerges as a particularly useful tool for the diagnosis and management of patients with cardiopulmonary disease.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Point-of-Care Systems/organization & administration , Quality Improvement , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/diagnostic imaging , Ultrasonography, Doppler/methods , COVID-19 , Cardiologists , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Lung/pathology , Male , Pandemics/prevention & control , Patient Positioning/methods , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Radiography, Thoracic/methods , Radiography, Thoracic/statistics & numerical data , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/physiopathology , Ultrasonography, Doppler/statistics & numerical data
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