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Drug Alcohol Depend ; 229(Pt A): 109176, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1517124


BACKGROUND: COVID-19 and resulting mitigation measures in the United States (US) brought about limited access to medical care that has been linked to increases in mental health problems, excessive substance use, and drug overdoses. The increase in co-prescription of benzodiazepines and opioids may indicate population-level changes in health behaviors that can be exacerbated by limited access, hence necessitating the tracking of these drugs during COVID-19. We evaluated the impact of the declaration of COVID-19 as a US national emergency on prescription patterns in 2020. METHODS: Prescriptions of benzodiazepines and opioids were analyzed using data aggregated on a weekly basis across 38 states over the January 2019-December 2020 period. Data were from Bamboo Health Prescription Drug Monitoring Program and covered all individuals regardless of insurance status. Generalized additive models estimated the effects of the March 13, 2020 declaration on proportion of prescriptions to all controlled substances by comparing volumes before to after the week of March 13 in 2020 (range: January 27-May 24) and comparing this trend to its 2019 counterpart. RESULTS: When comparing the January 27-March 9 period to the March 16-May 24 period in 2020, there was a statistically significant 2.0% increase in the proportion of benzodiazepine dispensations to all controlled substances, and a significant 1.7% mean decrease in proportion of opioid dispensations to all controlled substances. A significant return approaching pre-declaration levels was observed only for opioids (beginning week of May 18, 2020). CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest significant impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on dispensations of benzodiazepines and opioids across the US. Continued monitoring of prescription trends and maintenance of adequate and accessible access to mental healthcare are important for understanding public health crises related to substance use.

Analgesics, Opioid , COVID-19 , Analgesics, Opioid/therapeutic use , Benzodiazepines , Controlled Substances , Drug Prescriptions , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , United States/epidemiology
Braz. J. Psychiatry (São Paulo, 1999, Impr.) ; 43(1): 4-5, Jan.-Feb. 2021.
Article in English | WHO COVID, LILACS (Americas) | ID: covidwho-1177855
Ann Clin Transl Neurol ; 8(4): 929-937, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1092495


OBJECTIVE: To review the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on stroke care-metrics and report data from a health system in Houston. METHODS: We performed a meta-analysis of the published literature reporting stroke admissions, intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) cases, number of thrombolysis (tPA) and thrombectomy (MT) cases, and time metrics (door to needle, DTN; and door to groin time, DTG) during the pandemic compared to prepandemic period. Within our hospital system, between January-June 2019 and January-June 2020, we compared the proportion of stroke admissions and door to tPA and MT times. RESULTS: A total of 32,640 stroke admissions from 29 studies were assessed. Compared to prepandemic period, the mean ratio of stroke admissions during the pandemic was 70.78% [95% CI, 65.02%, 76.54%], ICH cases was 83.10% [95% CI, 71.01%, 95.17%], tPA cases was 81.74% [95% CI, 72.33%, 91.16%], and MT cases was 88.63% [95% CI, 74.12%, 103.13%], whereas DTN time was 104.48% [95% CI, 95.52%, 113.44%] and DTG was 104.30% [95% CI, 81.99%, 126.61%]. In Houston, a total of 4808 cases were assessed. There was an initial drop of ~30% in cases at the pandemic onset. Compared to 2019, there was a significant reduction in mild strokes (NIHSS 1-5) [N (%), 891 (43) vs 635 (40), P = 0.02]. There were similar mean (SD) (mins) DTN [44 (17) vs 42 (17), P = 0.14] but significantly prolonged DTG times [94 (15) vs 85 (20), P = 0.005] in 2020. INTERPRETATION: The COVID-19 pandemic led to a global reduction in stroke admissions and treatment interventions and prolonged treatment time metrics.

COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Patient Admission/trends , Stroke/epidemiology , Stroke/therapy , Brain Ischemia/epidemiology , Brain Ischemia/therapy , Fibrinolytic Agents/administration & dosage , Humans , Pandemics , Texas/epidemiology , Thrombectomy/trends , Thrombolytic Therapy/trends