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1.
BMC Oral Health ; 22(1): 211, 2022 05 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1866325

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Dental caries remains the most prevalent non-communicable disease globally affecting 60-90% of children. The World Health Organisation's (WHO) health-promoting school program offers a framework for dental intervention in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). This study explored teacher contributions to children's oral health in relation to the WHO health-promoting school framework in rural Uganda. METHODS: Semi structured interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of 18 teachers. All interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically. RESULTS: Many teachers reported preparing children to practise proper oral hygiene care through skills training and demonstrations around proper teeth brushing. Teachers' roles included raising health awareness by providing information on oral health topics using different educational methods. Many teachers mentioned performing oral health examinations on children at the school, first aid, referral for dental treatments and engaging parents, students and health workers in oral health promotion. CONCLUSIONS: Teachers play an essential role in oral health promotion in countries like Uganda. Teachers are implementing key principles of the WHO's health-promoting school framework on the ground and need to be considered as a key public health resource. If improvements in oral health are to be attained in Sub-Saharan Africa and other LMICs, government interventions need to harness teachers' contributions in delivering oral health promotion.


Subject(s)
Dental Caries , Oral Health , Child , Dental Caries/prevention & control , Health Promotion , Humans , Schools , Uganda
2.
Connect Health ; 1: 7-35, 2022 Jan 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1836209

ABSTRACT

During the COVID-19 pandemic, telemedicine has emerged worldwide as an indispensable resource to improve the surveillance of patients, curb the spread of disease, facilitate timely identification and management of ill people, but, most importantly, guarantee the continuity of care of frail patients with multiple chronic diseases. Although during COVID-19 telemedicine has thrived, and its adoption has moved forward in many countries, important gaps still remain. Major issues to be addressed to enable large scale implementation of telemedicine include: (1) establishing adequate policies to legislate telemedicine, license healthcare operators, protect patients' privacy, and implement reimbursement plans; (2) creating and disseminating practical guidelines for the routine clinical use of telemedicine in different contexts; (3) increasing in the level of integration of telemedicine with traditional healthcare services; (4) improving healthcare professionals' and patients' awareness of and willingness to use telemedicine; and (5) overcoming inequalities among countries and population subgroups due to technological, infrastructural, and economic barriers. If all these requirements are met in the near future, remote management of patients will become an indispensable resource for the healthcare systems worldwide and will ultimately improve the management of patients and the quality of care.

3.
Circ Res ; 128(7): 808-826, 2021 04 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1597870

ABSTRACT

In recent decades low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) have been witnessing a significant shift toward raised blood pressure; yet in LMICs, only 1 in 3 are aware of their hypertension status, and ≈8% have their blood pressure controlled. This rising burden widens the inequality gap, contributes to massive economic hardships of patients and carers, and increases costs to the health system, facing challenges such as low physician-to-patient ratios and lack of access to medicines. Established risk factors include unhealthy diet (high salt and low fruit and vegetable intake), physical inactivity, tobacco and alcohol use, and obesity. Emerging risk factors include pollution (air, water, noise, and light), urbanization, and a loss of green space. Risk factors that require further in-depth research are low birth weight and social and commercial determinants of health. Global actions include the HEARTS technical package and the push for universal health care. Promising research efforts highlight that successful interventions are feasible in LMICs. These include creation of health-promoting environments by introducing salt-reduction policies and sugar and alcohol tax; implementing cost-effective screening and simplified treatment protocols to mitigate treatment inertia; pooled procurement of low-cost single-pill combination therapy to improve adherence; increasing access to telehealth and mHealth (mobile health); and training health care staff, including community health workers, to strengthen team-based care. As the blood pressure trajectory continues creeping upward in LMICs, contextual research on effective, safe, and cost-effective interventions is urgent. New emergent risk factors require novel solutions. Lowering blood pressure in LMICs requires urgent global political and scientific priority and action.


Subject(s)
Developing Countries , Hypertension , Alcohol Drinking/adverse effects , Blood Pressure Monitors/standards , Blood Pressure Monitors/supply & distribution , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cardiovascular Physiological Phenomena , Developing Countries/statistics & numerical data , Diet/adverse effects , Environment , Environmental Pollution/adverse effects , Health Behavior , Heart Diseases/mortality , Humans , Hypertension/drug therapy , Hypertension/epidemiology , Hypertension/etiology , Life Style , Nurses/supply & distribution , Obesity/complications , Physicians/supply & distribution , Prevalence , Research , Risk Factors , Sedentary Behavior , Social Determinants of Health , Stroke/mortality , Tobacco Use/adverse effects , Urbanization
4.
Glob Heart ; 16(1): 47, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1335342

ABSTRACT

Background: The implications of city lockdown on vital signs during the COVID-19 outbreak are unknown. Objective: We longitudinally tracked vital signs using data from wearable sensors and determined associations with anxiety and depression. Methods: We selected all participants in the HUAWEI Heart Study from Wuhan and four nearby large provincial capital cities (Guangzhou, Chongqing, Hangzhou, Zhengzhou) and extracted all data from 26 December 2019 (one month before city lockdown) to 21 February 2020. Sleep duration and quality, daily steps, oxygen saturation and heart rate were collected on a daily basis. We compared the vital signs before and after the lockdown using segmented regression analysis of the interrupted time series. The depression and anxiety cases were defined as scores ≥8 on the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale depression and anxiety subscales [HADS-D and HADS-A] in 727 participants who finished the survey. Results: We included 19,960 participants (mean age 36 yrs, 90% men). Compared with pre-lockdown, resting heart rate dropped immediately by 1.1 bpm after city lockdown (95% confidence interval [CI]: -1.8, -0.4). Sleep duration increased by 0.5 hour (95% CI: 0.3, 0.8) but deep sleep ratio decreased by 0.9% (95% CI: -1.2, -0.6). Daily steps decreased by 3352 steps (95% CI: -4333, -2370). Anxiety and depression existed in 26% and 17% among 727 available participants, respectively, and associated with longer sleep duration (0.2 and 0.1 hour, both p < 0.001). Conclusions: Lockdown of Wuhan in China was associated with an adverse vital signs profile (reduced physical activity, heart rate, and sleep quality, but increased sleep duration). Wearable devices in combination with mobile-based apps may be useful to monitor both physical and mental health. Clinical trial registration: The trial is registered at Chinese Clinical Trial Registry (ChiCTR) website (ChiCTR-OOC-17014138).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Exercise , Heart Rate , Oxygen/metabolism , Public Policy , Sleep , Adult , Anxiety/psychology , China/epidemiology , Cities/epidemiology , Depression/psychology , Female , Humans , Interrupted Time Series Analysis , Male , Middle Aged , Oximetry , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Vital Signs , Wearable Electronic Devices , Young Adult
5.
BMJ Open ; 11(2): e043625, 2021 02 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1088257

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Whether ACE inhibitors (ACEi) or angiotensin II receptor blocker (ARB) therapy should be continued, initiated or ceased in patients with COVID-19 is uncertain. Given the widespread use of ACEi/ARBs worldwide, guidance on the use of these drugs is urgently needed. This prospective meta-analysis aims to pool data from randomised controlled trials (RCTs) to assess the safety and efficacy of ACEi/ARB therapy in adults infected with SARS-CoV-2. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: RCTs will be eligible if they compare patients with COVID-19 randomised to ACEi/ARB continuation or commencement versuss no ACEi/ARB therapy; study duration ≥14 days; recruitment completed between March 2020 and May 2021. The primary outcome will be all-cause mortality at ≤30 days. Secondary outcomes will include mechanical ventilation, admission to intensive care or cardiovascular events at short-term follow-up (≤30 days) and all-cause mortality at longer-term follow-up (>1 month). Prespecified subgroup analyses will assess the effect of sex; age; comorbidities; smoking status; ethnicity; country of origin on all-cause mortality. A search of ClinicalTrials.gov has been performed, which will be followed by a formal search of trial registers, preprint servers, MEDLINE, EMBASE and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials to identify RCTs that meet inclusion criteria. To date, a search of ClinicalTrials.gov identified 21 potentially eligible trials for this meta-analysis. We will request trial investigators/sponsors to contribute standardised grouped tabular outcome data. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethics approval and informed consent will be the responsibility of the individual RCTs. Dissemination of results will occur by peer-reviewed publication. The results of our analysis can inform public health policy and clinical decision making regarding ACEi/ARB use in patients with COVID-19 on a global scale.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/therapeutic use , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Meta-Analysis as Topic , Humans , Prospective Studies , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , Renin-Angiotensin System , Research Design
8.
BMC Med ; 18(1): 256, 2020 08 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-727273

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: After its outbreak in China, the novel COronaVIrus Disease 19 is spreading across the globe. It is an emergency the world has never seen before. MAIN TEXT: The attention of health systems is mainly focused on COronaVIrus Disease 19 patients and on the risk that intensive care units might be overwhelmed by the serious pulmonary complications. Different countries are also attempting to establish infection prevention and control strategies which proved effective in China where the outbreak was initially reported. We reflect on important lessons to be learnt from different countries. The effects that infection prevention and control strategies, such as social distancing or isolation, can have on the care of millions of patients with non-communicable diseases, who may be indirectly affected, have not been taken into consideration so much. CONCLUSIONS: When dealing with COronaVIrus Disease 19, policy makers and healthcare personnel should consider the indirect effects on the treatment of non-communicable diseases.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Cardiovascular Diseases , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Hypertension , Noncommunicable Diseases , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , COVID-19 , China/epidemiology , Emigration and Immigration , Health Resources , Humans , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2
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