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1.
J Nurs Manag ; 30(4): 872-882, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1731200

ABSTRACT

AIM: The aim of this study was to explore the COVID-19 pandemic as it was experienced by people on the front line in residential care settings for older people in the Republic of Ireland (ROI). BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic had a disproportionate effect in residential care settings for older people in Ireland. METHODS: A two-phased mixed methods study was conducted, consisting of an online survey administered shortly after the first wave of the virus to staff, residents and family members and one-to-one interviews with family members shortly after wave 2 of the virus. RESULTS: Isolation, loss of connectedness as well as a reduction in the level/quality of care provision led to significant adverse impacts for both residents and their families. Staff reported high levels of stress, trauma and burnout. Family input to care was suspended, with adverse consequences. CONCLUSION: The pandemic had an extremely adverse impact on residents, family members and staff in care settings for older people. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING MANAGEMENT: Strategies to ensure that residents' physical, emotional and social needs and staffs' professional and personal needs are appropriately supported during future waves of the pandemic should now be implemented.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Aged , Burnout, Psychological , COVID-19/epidemiology , Emotions , Family , Humans , Pandemics
2.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-322337

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic had a disproportionate effect among residents, family members and staff in residential care settings for older people in Ireland relative to other health care settings, particularly in wave one of the virus. The purpose of this study was to explore the COVID-19 pandemic as it was experienced by people on the front line of the virus - residents, family members and staff in residential care settings for older people in the Republic of Ireland (ROI). Method: A 2-phased mixed methods cross-sectional study was conducted. This consisted of a survey administered anonymously online shortly after the 1 st wave of the virus (June - August 2020), via our nursing and health care networks, advocacy organisations for older people and on social media targeting - staff, residents and family members. Family members who took part in the survey were invited to take part in phase 2 - qualitative one-to-one interviews which were conducted shortly after wave 2 of the virus (November - December 2020). Results: Seventy-six staff members completed the survey as well as 28 family members and 2 residents. Eleven family members took part in the qualitative interviews. Good infection control protocols, good governance/management structures, being prepared and agile responses were important factors in determining better outcomes. Isolation, loss of connectedness (to family, staff members and other residents) as well as a reduction in the level/quality of care provision led to significant adverse impacts for both residents and their families. Staff reported high levels of stress, trauma and burnout. A strong theme emerging from the qualitative element was the important role that family members typically have in supplementing care provision which suddenly and completely ceased during the pandemic. This caused huge distress amongst family members and physical decline and mental anguish amongst residents. Conclusions: This is the first research study to explore the experiences of residents, family members and staff who were at the front line of the pandemic in residential care settings in ROI when the pandemic struck. This study provides valuable insights which could be used by staff in residential care settings, policy makers/implementers in further waves of the pandemic or in future communicable disease outbreaks. The rights and needs of residents must be carefully balanced with infection control and prevention measures. Strategies to ensure that residents and staff are appropriately supported during future waves of the pandemic should now be implemented.

3.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-312919

ABSTRACT

How will the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic develop in the coming months and years? Based on an expert survey, we examine key aspects that are likely to influence COVID-19 in Europe. The future challenges and developments will strongly depend on the progress of national and global vaccination programs, the emergence and spread of variants of concern, and public responses to nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs). In the short term, many people are still unvaccinated, VOCs continue to emerge and spread, and mobility and population mixing is expected to increase over the summer. Therefore, policies that lift restrictions too much and too early risk another damaging wave. This challenge remains despite the reduced opportunities for transmission due to vaccination progress and reduced indoor mixing in the summer. In autumn 2021, increased indoor activity might accelerate the spread again, but a necessary reintroduction of NPIs might be too slow. The incidence may strongly rise again, possibly filling intensive care units, if vaccination levels are not high enough. A moderate, adaptive level of NPIs will thus remain necessary. These epidemiological aspects are put into perspective with the economic, social, and health-related consequences and thereby provide a holistic perspective on the future of COVID-19.

5.
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation ; 102(10):e40, 2021.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-1439870

ABSTRACT

Research Objectives To estimate the incidence of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in survivors 18 years old and above in Ireland. To describe the trajectory of rehabilitation/community services for survivors of moderate to severe TBI. To document the experiences of informal caregivers who provide support to TBI survivors in the Republic of Ireland. Design Data were collected retrospectively and prospectively using a mixed-method, observational cohort study design. Setting Interviews were carried out primarily in respondents’ homes (pre Covid-19) or via phone, to assist participants to complete questionnaires. Participants Three cohorts were involved in the study;all were aged 18 years and above, had the capacity to give informed consent and resided in Ireland. Cohort 1 - participants sustained a moderate to severe TBI in the past 3 to 12 months;cohort 2 - participants sustained a TBI over 12 months ago;cohort 3 - non-professional caregivers or family members who provide support to individuals with moderate to severe TBI. Interventions There were no interventions. Main Outcome Measures Epidemiological patterns using existing routine data (Major Trauma Audit, Hospital In-Patient Inquiry data, etc.) and calculate the societal burden of TBI from morbidity and mortality data using the Global Burden of Disease framework. Describe the trajectory of care/rehabilitation of TBI survivors and document the experiences of informal carer/support persons. Results It is expected that we will have epidemiological data, findings on rehabilitation services and caregivers’ experiences ready to report for the conference. Conclusions There is a paucity of TBI Research in Ireland. This national epidemiology and rehabilitation study will inform resource allocation for the redevelopment of neuro-rehabilitation services for brain injured survivors and inform us of carer/support persons’ experiences. Author(s) Disclosures There are no conflicts of interest for any of the authors listed on the abstract.

6.
Lancet Reg Health Eur ; 8: 100185, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1331031

ABSTRACT

How will the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic develop in the coming months and years? Based on an expert survey, we examine key aspects that are likely to influence the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe. The challenges and developments will strongly depend on the progress of national and global vaccination programs, the emergence and spread of variants of concern (VOCs), and public responses to non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs). In the short term, many people remain unvaccinated, VOCs continue to emerge and spread, and mobility and population mixing are expected to increase. Therefore, lifting restrictions too much and too early risk another damaging wave. This challenge remains despite the reduced opportunities for transmission given vaccination progress and reduced indoor mixing in summer 2021. In autumn 2021, increased indoor activity might accelerate the spread again, whilst a necessary reintroduction of NPIs might be too slow. The incidence may strongly rise again, possibly filling intensive care units, if vaccination levels are not high enough. A moderate, adaptive level of NPIs will thus remain necessary. These epidemiological aspects combined with economic, social, and health-related consequences provide a more holistic perspective on the future of the COVID-19 pandemic.

9.
Ir J Med Sci ; 191(2): 577-588, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1147617

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Worldwide, many people have been affected by COVID-19, a novel respiratory illness, caused by a new type of coronavirus SARS-CoV2. The COVID-19 outbreak is considered a pandemic and has created a number of challenges for the general population, patients, and healthcare professionals. Lockdowns have been implemented to slow down the spread of the virus with the expectation that these restrictions will limit the number of cases, and hence the number of hospitalizations and ICU admissions. However, these restrictions, and in particular lockdowns, impact on the life of everyone living in Ireland. AIM: To record how the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent restrictive measures impacted on people's activities, work, schooling, and childcare. METHODS: The Corona Citizens' Science Project was set up as a population-wide survey. A questionnaire was designed, and the survey was first launched on the 8th of April 2020. An overview of results was released in the press days later. Data was collected in four waves: April 8, April 22, May 6, and June 17, 2020. Each wave had core questions allowing to compare each wave, and wave-specific questions, to understand current impact of changing measures. RESULTS: Over four waves, 152,259 responses were collected. The mean age of respondents was 47 with about 10% over the age of 65. Around 75% were female and 85% had a higher degree. Nearly 70% of the respondents were in employment, and around 13% were retired. Up to 20% of the respondents were essential workers, and 10% of respondents indicated they were in receipt of the COVID-19 pandemic unemployment payment. Around 10% of the people who responded were living alone. The number of people talked to the previous day was on average 2.3 in the first survey; during the lockdown, this went up over time, and in the last survey, the mean was 3.9. The percentage of respondents who did not talk to anyone the previous day decreased from 40 to 22% over the waves. In the first wave, about 6% of respondents reported having had flu-like symptoms in the last 14 days, which declined to 3.3%, 2.5%, and 2.0% in waves 2, 3, and 4 respectively. Similarly, over the four waves, the respondents who indicated that someone they lived with had flu-like symptoms declined from 17 to 12%, 9%, and 11%. Throughout the four waves, nearly one third of people reported one or more underlying conditions. CONCLUSIONS: As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of restrictive measures, in particular lockdown, were implemented in Ireland to protect populations and healthcare systems. To record some of the major impacts on society, we launched a Corona Citizens Science Project, with the aim to support decision-making. This report provides detail of its findings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Female , Humans , Pandemics , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
10.
Artif Intell Med ; 114: 102053, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1128899

ABSTRACT

MOTIVATION: In the age of big data, the amount of scientific information available online dwarfs the ability of current tools to support researchers in locating and securing access to the necessary materials. Well-structured open data and the smart systems that make the appropriate use of it are invaluable and can help health researchers and professionals to find the appropriate information by, e.g., configuring the monitoring of information or refining a specific query on a disease. METHODS: We present an automated text classifier approach based on the MEDLINE/MeSH thesaurus, trained on the manual annotation of more than 26 million expert-annotated scientific abstracts. The classifier was developed tailor-fit to the public health and health research domain experts, in the light of their specific challenges and needs. We have applied the proposed methodology on three specific health domains: the Coronavirus, Mental Health and Diabetes, considering the pertinence of the first, and the known relations with the other two health topics. RESULTS: A classifier is trained on the MEDLINE dataset that can automatically annotate text, such as scientific articles, news articles or medical reports with relevant concepts from the MeSH thesaurus. CONCLUSIONS: The proposed text classifier shows promising results in the evaluation of health-related news. The application of the developed classifier enables the exploration of news and extraction of health-related insights, based on the MeSH thesaurus, through a similar workflow as in the usage of PubMed, with which most health researchers are familiar.


Subject(s)
Health Communication/standards , MEDLINE/organization & administration , Medical Subject Headings , Research/organization & administration , Big Data , COVID-19/epidemiology , Classification , Diabetes Mellitus/epidemiology , Humans , MEDLINE/standards , Mental Health/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2 , Semantics
11.
Eur J Public Health ; 31(1): 235-237, 2021 02 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1083268
13.
Ieee Computational Intelligence Magazine ; 15(4):51-61, 2020.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-900844

ABSTRACT

With the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the novel Meaningful Integration of Data Analytics and Services (MIDAS) platform quickly demonstrates its value, relevance and transferability to this new global crisis. The MIDAS platform enables the connection of a large number of isolated heterogeneous data sources, and combines rich datasets including open and social data, ingesting and preparing these for the application of analytics, monitoring and research tools. These platforms will assist public health author ities in: (i) better understanding the disease and its impact;(ii) monitoring the different aspects of the evolution of the pandemic across a diverse range of groups;(iii) contributing to improved resilience against the impacts of this global crisis;and (iv) enhancing preparedness for future public health emergencies. The model of governance and ethical review, incorporated and defined within MIDAS, also addresses the complex privacy and ethical issues that the developing pandemic has highlighted, allowing oversight and scrutiny of more and richer data sources by users of the system.

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