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1.
Hepatol Commun ; 6(4): 920-930, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1756574

ABSTRACT

Palliative care (PC) benefits patients with serious illness including end-stage liver disease (ESLD). As part of a cluster randomized trial, hepatologists were trained to deliver primary palliative care to patients with ESLD using an online course, Palliative Care Always: Hepatology (PCA:Hep). Here we present a multimethod formative evaluation (feasibility, knowledge acquisition, self-efficacy, and practice patterns) of PCA:Hep. Feasibility was measured by completion of coursework and achieving a course grade of >80%. Knowledge acquisition was measured through assessments before and throughout the course. Pre/post-course surveys were conducted to determine self-efficacy and practice patterns. The hepatologists (n = 39) enrolled in a 12-week online course and spent 1-3 hours on the course weekly. The course was determined to be feasible as 97% successfully completed the course and 100% passed. The course was acceptable to participants; 91.7 % reported a positive course experience and satisfaction with knowledge gained (91.6%). The pre/post knowledge assessment showed an improvement of 6.0% (pre 85.9% to post 91.9%, 95% CI [2.8, 9.2], P = 0.001). Self-efficacy increased significantly (P < 0.001) in psychological symptom management, hospice, and psychosocial support. A year after training, over 80% of the hepatologists reported integrating a variety of PC skills into routine patient care. Conclusion: PCA:Hep is feasible, acceptable, and improves learner knowledge and confidence in palliative care skills. This is a viable method to teach primary PC skills to specialists caring for patients with ESLD.


Subject(s)
End Stage Liver Disease , Gastroenterologists , Gastroenterology , Hospice and Palliative Care Nursing , End Stage Liver Disease/psychology , Humans , Palliative Care/methods
2.
Hepatology ; 2022 Jan 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1705290

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Patients develop breakthrough COVID-19 infection despite vaccination. The aim of this study was to identify outcomes in patients with cirrhosis who developed postvaccination COVID-19. METHODS: We performed a retrospective cohort study among US veterans with cirrhosis and postvaccination or unvaccinated COVID-19. Patients were considered fully vaccinated if COVID-19 was diagnosed 14 days after the second dose of either the Pfizer BNT162b2, the Moderna 1273-mRNA, or the single-dose Janssen Ad.26.COV2.S vaccines and partially vaccinated if COVID-19 was diagnosed 7 days after the first dose of any vaccine but prior to full vaccination. We investigated the association of postvaccination COVID-19 with mortality. RESULTS: We identified 3242 unvaccinated and 254 postvaccination COVID-19 patients with cirrhosis (82 after full and 172 after partial vaccination). In a multivariable analysis of a 1:2 propensity-matched cohort including vaccinated (n = 254) and unvaccinated (n = 508) participants, postvaccination COVID-19 was associated with reduced risk of death (adjusted HR [aHR], 0.21; 95% CI, 0.11-0.42). The reduction was observed after both full (aHR, 0.22; 95% CI, 0.08-0.63) and partial (aHR, 0.19; 95% CI, 0.07-0.54) vaccination, following the 1273-mRNA (aHR, 0.12; 95% CI 0.04-0.37) and BNT162b2 (aHR, 0.27; 95% CI, 0.10-0.71) vaccines and among patients with compensated (aHR, 0.19; 95% CI, 0.08-0.45) and decompensated (aHR, 0.27; 95% CI, 0.08-0.90) cirrhosis. Findings were consistent in a sensitivity analysis restricted to participants who developed COVID-19 after vaccine availability. CONCLUSIONS: Though patients with cirrhosis can develop breakthrough COVID-19 after full or partial vaccination, these infections are associated with reduced mortality.

4.
JAMA Intern Med ; 181(10): 1306-1314, 2021 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1306626

ABSTRACT

Importance: Two mRNA-based vaccines against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were found to be highly efficacious in phase 3 clinical trials in the US. However, patients with chronic illnesses, including cirrhosis, were excluded from clinical trials. Patients with cirrhosis have immune dysregulation that is associated with vaccine hyporesponsiveness. Objective: To study the association of receipt of the Pfizer BNT162b2 mRNA or the Moderna mRNA-1273 vaccines in patients with cirrhosis compared with a propensity-matched control group of patients at similar risk of infection and severe disease from COVID-19. Design, Setting, and Participants: We performed a retrospective cohort study of patients with cirrhosis who received at least 1 dose of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine at the Veterans Health Administration. Patients who received at least 1 dose of the vaccine (n = 20 037) were propensity matched with 20 037 controls to assess the associations of vaccination with new COVID-19 infection and COVID-19 hospitalization and death. Exposures: Receipt of at least 1 dose of the BNT162b2 mRNA or the mRNA-1273 vaccines between December 18, 2020, and March 17, 2021. Main Outcomes and Measures: COVID-19 infection as documented by a positive result for COVID-19 by polymerase chain reaction, hospitalization, and death due to COVID-19 infection. Results: The median (interquartile range) age of the vaccinated individuals in the study cohort was 69.1 (8.4) years and 19 465 (97.2%) of the participants in each of the vaccinated and unvaccinated groups were male, consistent with a US veteran population. The mRNA-1273 vaccine was administered in 10 236 (51%) and the BNT162b2 mRNA in 9801 (49%) patients. Approximately 99.7% of patients who received the first dose of either vaccine with a follow-up of 42 days or more received a second dose. The number of COVID-19 infections in the vaccine recipients was similar to the control group in days 0 to 7, 7 to 14, 14 to 21, and 21 to 28 after the first dose. After 28 days, receipt of 1 dose of an mRNA vaccine was associated with a 64.8% reduction in COVID-19 infections and 100% protection against hospitalization or death due to COVID-19 infection. The association of reduced COVID-19 infections after the first dose was lower among patients with decompensated (50.3%) compared with compensated cirrhosis (66.8%). Receipt of a second dose was associated with a 78.6% reduction in COVID-19 infections and 100% reduction in COVID-19-related hospitalization or death after 7 days. Conclusions and Relevance: This cohort study of US veterans found that mRNA vaccine administration was associated with a delayed but modest reduction in COVID-19 infection but an excellent reduction in COVID-19-related hospitalization or death in patients with cirrhosis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Hospitalization , Liver Cirrhosis/complications , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Female , Humans , Liver Cirrhosis/mortality , Male , Middle Aged , Propensity Score , Retrospective Studies , Survival Rate , United States , Veterans
6.
PLoS Med ; 17(9): e1003379, 2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-796633

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: There is growing concern that racial and ethnic minority communities around the world are experiencing a disproportionate burden of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We investigated racial and ethnic disparities in patterns of COVID-19 testing (i.e., who received testing and who tested positive) and subsequent mortality in the largest integrated healthcare system in the United States. METHODS AND FINDINGS: This retrospective cohort study included 5,834,543 individuals receiving care in the US Department of Veterans Affairs; most (91%) were men, 74% were non-Hispanic White (White), 19% were non-Hispanic Black (Black), and 7% were Hispanic. We evaluated associations between race/ethnicity and receipt of COVID-19 testing, a positive test result, and 30-day mortality, with multivariable adjustment for a wide range of demographic and clinical characteristics including comorbid conditions, health behaviors, medication history, site of care, and urban versus rural residence. Between February 8 and July 22, 2020, 254,595 individuals were tested for COVID-19, of whom 16,317 tested positive and 1,057 died. Black individuals were more likely to be tested (rate per 1,000 individuals: 60.0, 95% CI 59.6-60.5) than Hispanic (52.7, 95% CI 52.1-53.4) and White individuals (38.6, 95% CI 38.4-38.7). While individuals from minority backgrounds were more likely to test positive (Black versus White: odds ratio [OR] 1.93, 95% CI 1.85-2.01, p < 0.001; Hispanic versus White: OR 1.84, 95% CI 1.74-1.94, p < 0.001), 30-day mortality did not differ by race/ethnicity (Black versus White: OR 0.97, 95% CI 0.80-1.17, p = 0.74; Hispanic versus White: OR 0.99, 95% CI 0.73-1.34, p = 0.94). The disparity between Black and White individuals in testing positive for COVID-19 was stronger in the Midwest (OR 2.66, 95% CI 2.41-2.95, p < 0.001) than the West (OR 1.24, 95% CI 1.11-1.39, p < 0.001). The disparity in testing positive for COVID-19 between Hispanic and White individuals was consistent across region, calendar time, and outbreak pattern. Study limitations include underrepresentation of women and a lack of detailed information on social determinants of health. CONCLUSIONS: In this nationwide study, we found that Black and Hispanic individuals are experiencing an excess burden of SARS-CoV-2 infection not entirely explained by underlying medical conditions or where they live or receive care. There is an urgent need to proactively tailor strategies to contain and prevent further outbreaks in racial and ethnic minority communities.


Subject(s)
Clinical Laboratory Techniques/statistics & numerical data , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Veterans/statistics & numerical data , Adult , African Americans/statistics & numerical data , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Cohort Studies , Coronavirus Infections/ethnology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/ethnology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , United States/epidemiology , Young Adult
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