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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(1)2022 01 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613766

ABSTRACT

The ongoing 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic continues to impact the health of individuals worldwide, including causing pauses in lifesaving cancer screening and prevention measures. From time to time, elective medical procedures, such as those used for cancer screening and early detection, were deferred due to concerns regarding the spread of the infection. The short- and long-term consequences of these temporary measures are concerning, particularly for medically underserved populations, who already experience inequities and disparities related to timely cancer care. Clearly, the way out of this pandemic is by increasing COVID-19 vaccination rates and doing so in an equitable manner so that communities most affected receive preferential access and administration. In this article, we provide a perspective on vaccine equity by featuring the experience of the California Hispanic community, who has been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. We first compared vaccination rates in two United States-Mexico border counties in California (San Diego County and Imperial County) to counties elsewhere in California with a similar Hispanic population size. We show that the border counties have substantially lower unvaccinated proportions of Hispanics compared to other counties. We next looked at county vaccination rates according to the California Healthy Places Index, a health equity metric and found that San Diego and Imperial counties achieved more equitable access and distribution than the rest of the state. Finally, we detail strategies implemented to achieve high and equitable vaccination in this border region, including Imperial County, an agricultural region that was California's epicenter of the COVID-19 crisis at the height of the pandemic. These United States-Mexico border county data show that equitable vaccine access and delivery is possible. Multiple strategies can be used to guide the delivery and access to other public health and cancer preventive services.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , California/epidemiology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , United States , Vaccination
2.
J Public Health Manag Pract ; 28(1): 50-59, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1612730

ABSTRACT

CONTEXT: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) incidence rates are 2- to 5-fold higher among persons incarcerated in the United States than in the general population. PROGRAM OR POLICY: We describe an outbreak investigation of COVID-19 at a jail (jail A) in Alameda County during March 2020-March 2021. IMPLEMENTATION: To prevent COVID-19 cases among incarcerated persons and employees, staff at jail A and the county public health department worked to develop and recommend infection control measures implemented by jail A including, but not limited to, face covering use among incarcerated persons and staff; cohorting incarcerated persons at a higher risk of severe COVID-19 in dedicated housing units; quarantining all newly detained individuals for 14 days; and offering testing for all symptomatic incarcerated persons, newly incarcerated persons at day 2 and day 10, and all persons who resided in a housing unit where a COVID-19 case was detected. EVALUATION: A total of 571 COVID-19 cases were detected among incarcerated persons at jail A during March 2020-March 2021, which represented a total incidence of 280 per 1000 population, 5 times higher than the rate in Alameda County. Of the 571 cases among incarcerated persons, 557 (98%) were male; 415 (73%) were aged 18 to 40 years; 249 (44%) were Latino; and 180 (32%) were African American; 354 (62%) were not symptomatic; and 220 (39%) had no comorbidities. Less than 2% of infected incarcerated persons were hospitalized, and no deaths were reported. DISCUSSION: COVID-19 disproportionately impacted persons incarcerated at jail A, with higher numbers among Latinos and African Americans. Implementation of COVID-19 infection control and testing measures, and collaboration between public health, law enforcement, and health care providers may have, in part, led to reductions in morbidity and mortality associated with COVID-19 at jail A.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Jails , California/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Prisons , Quarantine , SARS-CoV-2 , United States
3.
BMJ ; 375: e068848, 2021 12 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1583187

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effectiveness of the mRNA-1273 vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 variants and assess its effectiveness against the delta variant by time since vaccination. DESIGN: Test negative case-control study. SETTING: Kaiser Permanente Southern California (KPSC), an integrated healthcare system. PARTICIPANTS: Adult KPSC members with a SARS-CoV-2 positive test sent for whole genome sequencing or a negative test from 1 March 2021 to 27 July 2021. INTERVENTIONS: Two dose or one dose vaccination with mRNA-1273 (Moderna covid-19 vaccine) ≥14 days before specimen collection versus no covid-19 vaccination. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Outcomes included infection with SARS-CoV-2 and hospital admission with covid-19. In pre-specified analyses for each variant type, test positive cases were matched 1:5 to test negative controls on age, sex, race/ethnicity, and specimen collection date. Conditional logistic regression was used to compare odds of vaccination among cases versus controls, with adjustment for confounders. Vaccine effectiveness was calculated as (1-odds ratio)×100%. RESULTS: The study included 8153 cases and their matched controls. Two dose vaccine effectiveness was 86.7% (95% confidence interval 84.3% to 88.7%) against infection with the delta variant, 98.4% (96.9% to 99.1%) against alpha, 90.4% (73.9% to 96.5%) against mu, 96-98% against other identified variants, and 79.9% (76.9% to 82.5%) against unidentified variants (that is, specimens that failed sequencing). Vaccine effectiveness against hospital admission with the delta variant was 97.5% (92.7% to 99.2%). Vaccine effectiveness against infection with the delta variant declined from 94.1% (90.5% to 96.3%) 14-60 days after vaccination to 80.0% (70.2% to 86.6%) 151-180 days after vaccination. Waning was less pronounced for non-delta variants. Vaccine effectiveness against delta infection was lower among people aged ≥65 years (75.2%, 59.6% to 84.8%) than those aged 18-64 years (87.9%, 85.5% to 89.9%). One dose vaccine effectiveness was 77.0% (60.7% to 86.5%) against infection with delta. CONCLUSIONS: Two doses of mRNA-1273 were highly effective against all SARS-CoV-2 variants, especially against hospital admission with covid-19. However, vaccine effectiveness against infection with the delta variant moderately declined with increasing time since vaccination.


Subject(s)
/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , /administration & dosage , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , California , Case-Control Studies , Female , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Young Adult
4.
J Nutr Educ Behav ; 53(12): 1055-1059, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1536664

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To examine whether the decrease in very low food security (VLFS) observed in California shortly after California's coronavirus disease (COVID-19) shutdown remained throughout Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2020. To investigate associations among unemployment, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) enrollment, and VLFS across FFY 2020. METHODS: Telephone interview responses from mothers from randomly sampled households from low-income areas throughout California to the 6-item US Department of Agriculture Food Security Survey Module identified VLFS families. Logistic regression examined VLFS rates before vs after California's COVID-19 shutdown, with race/ethnicity, age, and education as covariates. Pearson correlations were calculated for unemployment, SNAP enrollment, and VLFS. RESULTS: Most (66.4%) of the 2,682 mothers were Latina. VLFS declined from 19.3% before to 14.5% after California's COVID-19 shutdown (adjusted odds ratio, 0.705; P = 0.002). The correlation for unemployment and SNAP household participation was 0.854 (P = 0.007), and for SNAP participation and VLFS was -0.869 (P = 0.005). CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Publicly-funded assistance programs may lower food insecurity, even during a time of increased economic hardship. Examining the specific factors responsible for the observed decline in VLFS has merit. Whether VLFS remains below the rate observed before California's COVID-19 shutdown is worthy of ongoing study.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Food Assistance , California , Female , Food Insecurity , Food Supply , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Unemployment
6.
Ann Intern Med ; 173(7): 527-535, 2020 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526994

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic spurred health systems across the world to quickly shift from in-person visits to safer video visits. OBJECTIVE: To seek stakeholder perspectives on video visits' acceptability and effect 3 weeks after near-total transition to video visits. DESIGN: Semistructured qualitative interviews. SETTING: 6 Stanford general primary care and express care clinics at 6 northern California sites, with 81 providers, 123 staff, and 97 614 patient visits in 2019. PARTICIPANTS: 53 program participants (overlapping roles as medical providers [n = 20], medical assistants [n = 16], nurses [n = 4], technologists [n = 4], and administrators [n = 13]) were interviewed about video visit transition and challenges. INTERVENTION: In 3 weeks, express care and primary care video visits increased from less than 10% to greater than 80% and from less than 10% to greater than 75%, respectively. New video visit providers received video visit training and care quality feedback. New system workflows were created to accommodate the new visit method. MEASUREMENTS: 9 faculty, trained in qualitative research methods, conducted 53 stakeholder interviews in 4 days using purposeful (administrators and technologists) and convenience (medical assistant, nurses, and providers) sampling. A rapid qualitative analytic approach for thematic analysis was used. RESULTS: The analysis revealed 12 themes, including Pandemic as Catalyst; Joy in Medicine; Safety in Medicine; Slipping Through the Cracks; My Role, Redefined; and The New Normal. Themes were analyzed using the RE-AIM (reach, effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance) framework to identify critical issues for continued program utilization. LIMITATIONS: Evaluation was done immediately after deployment. Although viewpoints may have evolved later, immediate evaluation allowed for prompt program changes and identified broader issues to address for program sustainability. CONCLUSION: After pandemic-related systems transformation at Stanford, critical issues to sustain video visit long-term viability were identified. Specifically, technology ease of use must improve and support multiparty videoconferencing. Providers should be able to care for their patients, regardless of geography. Providers need decision-making support with virtual examination training and home-based patient diagnostics. Finally, ongoing video visit reimbursement should be commensurate with value to the patients' health and well-being. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Stanford Department of Medicine and Stanford Health Care.


Subject(s)
Attitude of Health Personnel , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Primary Health Care/methods , Telemedicine/methods , Adult , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , California/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Qualitative Research , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Prev Med ; 153: 106845, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1525992

ABSTRACT

As overdose mortality is spiking during the COVID-19 pandemic, few race/ethnicity-stratified trends are available. This is of particular concern as overdose mortality was increasing most rapidly in Black and Latinx communities prior to the pandemic. We used quarterly, age-standardized overdose mortality rates from California to assess trends by race/ethnicity and drug involved over time. Rates from 2020 Q2-Q4 were compared to expected trends based on ARIMA forecasting models fit using data from 2006 to 2020 Q1. In 2020 Q2-Q4 overdose death rates rose by 49.8% from 2019, exceeding an expected increase of 11.5% (95%CI: 0.5%-22.5%). Rates significantly exceeded forecasted trends for all racial/ethnic groups. Black/African American individuals saw an increase of 52.4% from 2019, compared to 42.6% among their White counterparts. The absolute Black-White overdose mortality gap rose from 0.7 higher per 100,000 for Black individuals in 2018 to 4.8 in 2019, and further increased to 9.9 during the pandemic. Black overdose mortality in California was therefore 34.3% higher than that of White individuals in 2020 Q2-Q4. This reflects growing methamphetamine-, cocaine-, and fentanyl-involved deaths among Black communities. Growing racial disparities in overdose must be understood in the context of the unequal social and economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, during which time Black communities have been subjected to the dual burden of disproportionate COVID-19 deaths and rising overdose mortality. Increased investments are required to ameliorate racial/ethnic disparities in substance use treatment, harm reduction, and the structural drivers of overdose, as part of the COVID-19 response and post-pandemic recovery efforts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , California/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
8.
PLoS One ; 16(11): e0259703, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1506037

ABSTRACT

Two mRNA vaccines (BNT162b2 and mRNA-1273) against severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are globally authorized as a two-dose regimen. Understanding the magnitude and duration of protective immune responses is vital to curbing the pandemic. We enrolled 461 high-risk health services workers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and first responders in the Los Angeles County Fire Department (LACoFD) to assess the humoral responses in previously infected (PI) and infection naïve (NPI) individuals to mRNA-based vaccines (BNT162b2/Pfizer- BioNTech or mRNA-1273/Moderna). A chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay was used to detect antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 Spike in vaccinees prior to (n = 21) and following each vaccine dose (n = 246 following dose 1 and n = 315 following dose 2), and at days 31-60 (n = 110) and 61-90 (n = 190) following completion of the 2-dose series. Both vaccines induced robust antibody responses in all immunocompetent individuals. Previously infected individuals achieved higher median peak titers (p = 0.002) and had a slower rate of decay (p = 0.047) than infection-naïve individuals. mRNA-1273 vaccinated infection-naïve individuals demonstrated modestly higher titers following each dose (p = 0.005 and p = 0.029, respectively) and slower rates of antibody decay (p = 0.003) than those who received BNT162b2. A subset of previously infected individuals (25%) required both doses in order to reach peak antibody titers. The biologic significance of the differences between previously infected individuals and between the mRNA-1273 and BNT162b2 vaccines remains uncertain, but may have important implications for booster strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Immunity, Humoral , SARS-CoV-2 , Academic Medical Centers , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibody Formation , California/epidemiology , Emergency Medical Services , Emergency Responders , Health Personnel , Humans , Immunoassay , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , Universities
9.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 21675, 2021 11 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504246

ABSTRACT

The recent outbreak of the COVID-19 led to death of millions of people worldwide. To stave off the spread of the virus, the authorities in the US employed different strategies, including the mask mandate order issued by the states' governors. In the current work, we defined a parameter called average death ratio as the monthly average of the number of daily deaths to the monthly average number of daily cases. We utilized survey data to quantify people's abidance by the mask mandate order. Additionally, we implicitly addressed the extent to which people abide by the mask mandate order, which may depend on some parameters such as population, income, and education level. Using different machine learning classification algorithms, we investigated how the decrease or increase in death ratio for the counties in the US West Coast correlates with the input parameters. The results showed that for the majority of counties, the mask mandate order decreased the death ratio, reflecting the effectiveness of such a preventive measure on the West Coast. Additionally, the changes in the death ratio demonstrated a noticeable correlation with the socio-economic condition of each county. Moreover, the results showed a promising classification accuracy score as high as 90%.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/prevention & control , Masks/trends , California , Guideline Adherence/trends , Health Policy , Humans , Machine Learning , Masks/statistics & numerical data , Oregon , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Washington
10.
PLoS One ; 16(11): e0258738, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1502067

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Epidemics of COVID-19 in student populations at universities were a key concern for the 2020-2021 school year. The University of California (UC) System developed a set of recommendations to reduce campus infection rates. SARS-CoV-2 test results are summarized for the ten UC campuses during the Fall 2020 term. METHODS: UC mitigation efforts included protocols for the arrival of students living on-campus students, non-pharmaceutical interventions, daily symptom monitoring, symptomatic testing, asymptomatic surveillance testing, isolation and quarantine protocols, student ambassador programs for health education, campus health and safety pledges, and lowered density of on-campus student housing. We used data from UC campuses, the UC Health-California Department of Public Health Data Modeling Consortium, and the U.S. Census to estimate the proportion of each campus' student populations that tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 and compared it to the fraction individuals aged 20-29 years who tested positive in their respective counties. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 cases in campus populations were generally low in September and October 2020, but increased in November and especially December, and were highest in early to mid-January 2021, mirroring case trajectories in their respective counties. Many students were infected during the Thanksgiving and winter holiday recesses and were detected as cases upon returning to campus. The proportion of students who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 during Fall 2020 ranged from 1.2% to 5.2% for students living on campus and was similar to students living off campus. For most UC campuses the proportion of students testing positive was lower than that for the 20-29-year-old population in which campuses were located. CONCLUSIONS: The layered mitigation approach used on UC campuses, informed by public health science and augmented perhaps by a more compliant population, likely minimized campus transmission and outbreaks and limited transmission to surrounding communities. University policies that include these mitigation efforts in Fall 2020 along with SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, may alleviate some local concerns about college students returning to communities and facilitate resumption of normal campus operations and in-person instruction.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Universities , Adult , COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19 Vaccines , California/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Disease Outbreaks , Educational Status , Epidemics , Female , Geography , Humans , Male , Mass Screening , Quarantine , Students , Young Adult
11.
Medicine (Baltimore) ; 100(43): e27664, 2021 Oct 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494093

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: This study examined changes in psychotropic medication use associated with the early months of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Using Kaiser Permanente Northern California electronic health records, the authors identified adult patients with fills for psychotropic medications and a non-psychotropic comparator (statins) in the 13 weeks before and after the first-known COVID-19-related death in California (March 4, 2020). Generalized estimating equations were used to derive relative risk ratios (RRR) for medication fills compared with the prior year. Analyses were stratified by new and continued fills and patient characteristics. Among 2,405,824 patients, the mean (SD) age was 49.8 (17.9) years; 52.9% were female; 47.9% identified as White; 8.0% and 7.9% had anxiety and depression disorder diagnoses, respectively. Accounting for secular trends, in the 13 weeks following March 4, 2020, there were increased fills for trazodone (RRR = 1.03, 95% CI = 1.02, 1.04), decreased fills for benzodiazepines (RRR = 0.95, 95% CI = 0.94, 0.96) and hypnotics (RRR = 0.97, 95% CI = 0.96, 0.99), and stable fills for antidepressants (RRR = 1.00, 95% CI = 0.99, 1.00). Relative rates of new fills decreased across most medication classes and continued fills either remained stable or demonstrated non-clinically significant decreases. Patients aged ≥65 years demonstrated decreased fills for most medication classes. In the first 13 weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, fills for most psychotropic medications remained constant or showed small changes relative to the previous year. Continued (compared with new) fills accounted for observed increases in some medication classes. Older adults demonstrated decreased fills of most medications.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Central Nervous System Agents/administration & dosage , Drug Prescriptions/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , California/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors , Socioeconomic Factors
12.
Am J Epidemiol ; 190(11): 2300-2313, 2021 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493670

ABSTRACT

To measure disparities in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) hospitalization and intensive care unit (ICU) transfer among racially/ethnically marginalized groups before and after implementation of the California statewide shelter-in-place (SIP) policy, we conducted a retrospective cohort study within a health-care system in California. COVID-19 patients diagnosed from January 1, 2020, to August 31, 2020, were identified from electronic health records. We examined hospitalizations and ICU transfers by race/ethnicity and pandemic period using logistic regression. Among 16,520 people with COVID-19 (mean age = 46.6 (standard deviation, 18.4) years; 54.2% women), during the post-SIP period, patients were on average younger and a larger proportion were Hispanic. In adjusted models, odds of hospitalization were 20% lower post-SIP as compared with the SIP period, yet all non-White groups had higher odds (odds ratios = 1.6-2.1) than non-Hispanic White individuals, regardless of period. Among hospitalized patients, odds of ICU transfer were 33% lower post-SIP than during SIP. Hispanic and Asian patients had higher odds than non-Hispanics. Disparities in hospitalization persisted and ICU risk became more pronounced for Asian and Hispanic patients post-SIP. Policy-makers should consider ways to proactively address racial/ethnic inequities in risk when considering future population-level policy interventions for public health crises.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/ethnology , Health Status Disparities , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , /statistics & numerical data , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/virology , California/epidemiology , Comorbidity , Female , Health Policy , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
14.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(10): 2604-2618, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486164

ABSTRACT

We conducted a detailed analysis of coronavirus disease in a large population center in southern California, USA (Orange County, population 3.2 million), to determine heterogeneity in risks for infection, test positivity, and death. We used a combination of datasets, including a population-representative seroprevalence survey, to assess the actual burden of disease and testing intensity, test positivity, and mortality. In the first month of the local epidemic (March 2020), case incidence clustered in high-income areas. This pattern quickly shifted, and cases next clustered in much higher rates in the north-central area of the county, which has a lower socioeconomic status. Beginning in April 2020, a concentration of reported cases, test positivity, testing intensity, and seropositivity in a north-central area persisted. At the individual level, several factors (e.g., age, race or ethnicity, and ZIP codes with low educational attainment) strongly affected risk for seropositivity and death.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Epidemics , California/epidemiology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies
15.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(43)2021 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1483204

ABSTRACT

Contact tracing is a pillar of COVID-19 response, but language access and equity have posed major obstacles. COVID-19 has disproportionately affected minority communities with many non-English-speaking members. Language discordance can increase processing times and hamper the trust building necessary for effective contact tracing. We demonstrate how matching predicted patient language with contact tracer language can enhance contact tracing. First, we show how to use machine learning to combine information from sparse laboratory reports with richer census data to predict the language of an incoming case. Second, we embed this method in the highly demanding environment of actual contact tracing with high volumes of cases in Santa Clara County, CA. Third, we evaluate this language-matching intervention in a randomized controlled trial. We show that this low-touch intervention results in 1) significant time savings, shortening the time from opening of cases to completion of the initial interview by nearly 14 h and increasing same-day completion by 12%, and 2) improved engagement, reducing the refusal to interview by 4%. These findings have important implications for reducing social disparities in COVID-19; improving equity in healthcare access; and, more broadly, leveling language differences in public services.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Contact Tracing/methods , Language , SARS-CoV-2 , Algorithms , COVID-19/epidemiology , California/epidemiology , Communication Barriers , Contact Tracing/statistics & numerical data , Female , Humans , Machine Learning , Male , Pandemics/prevention & control , Surveys and Questionnaires , Trust
16.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 20987, 2021 10 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1483149

ABSTRACT

Acid suppressants are widely-used classes of medications linked to increased risks of aerodigestive infections. Prior studies of these medications as potentially reversible risk factors for COVID-19 have been conflicting. We aimed to determine the impact of chronic acid suppression use on COVID-19 infection risk while simultaneously evaluating the influence of social determinants of health to validate known and discover novel risk factors. We assessed the association of chronic acid suppression with incident COVID-19 in a 1:1 case-control study of 900 patients tested across three academic medical centers in California, USA. Medical comorbidities and history of chronic acid suppression use were manually extracted from health records by physicians following a pre-specified protocol. Socio-behavioral factors by geomapping publicly-available data to patient zip codes were incorporated. We identified no evidence to support an association between chronic acid suppression and COVID-19 (adjusted odds ratio 1.04, 95% CI 0.92-1.17, P = 0.515). However, several medical and social features were positive (Latinx ethnicity, BMI ≥ 30, dementia, public transportation use, month of the pandemic) and negative (female sex, concurrent solid tumor, alcohol use disorder) predictors of new infection. These findings demonstrate the value of integrating publicly-available databases with medical data to identify critical features of communicable diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Gastroesophageal Reflux/complications , Social Determinants of Health , Aged , Behavior , COVID-19/psychology , California , Case-Control Studies , Computational Biology/methods , Databases, Factual , Female , Gastroenterology , Gastroesophageal Reflux/drug therapy , Geography , Histamine H2 Antagonists/pharmacology , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Odds Ratio , Proton Pump Inhibitors/pharmacology , Risk Factors , Social Class
17.
Environ Pollut ; 292(Pt B): 118396, 2022 Jan 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1482582

ABSTRACT

A growing number of studies report associations between air pollution and COVID-19 mortality. Most were ecological studies at the county or regional level which disregard important local variability and relied on data from only the first few months of the pandemic. Using COVID-19 deaths identified from death certificates in California, we evaluated whether long-term ambient air pollution was related to weekly COVID-19 mortality at the census tract-level during the first ∼12 months of the pandemic. Weekly COVID-19 mortality for each census tract was calculated based on geocoded death certificate data. Annual average concentrations of ambient particulate matter <2.5 µm (PM2.5) and <10 µm (PM10), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and ozone (O3) over 2014-2019 were assessed for all census tracts using inverse distance-squared weighting based on data from the ambient air quality monitoring system. Negative binomial mixed models related weekly census tract COVID-19 mortality counts to a natural cubic spline for calendar week. We included adjustments for potential confounders (census tract demographic and socioeconomic factors), random effects for census tract and county, and an offset for census tract population. Data were analyzed as two study periods: Spring/Summer (March 16-October 18, 2020) and Winter (October 19, 2020-March 7, 2021). Mean (standard deviation) concentrations were 10.3 (2.1) µg/m3 for PM2.5, 25.5 (7.1) µg/m3 for PM10, 11.3 (4.0) ppb for NO2, and 42.8 (6.9) ppb for O3. For Spring/Summer, adjusted rate ratios per standard deviation increase were 1.13 (95% confidence interval: 1.09, 1.17) for PM2.5, 1.16 (1.11, 1.21) for PM10, 1.06 (1.02, 1.10) for NO2, and 1.09 (1.04, 1.14) for O3. Associations were replicated in Winter, although they were attenuated for PM2.5 and PM10. Study findings support a relation between long-term ambient air pollution exposure and COVID-19 mortality. Communities with historically high pollution levels might be at higher risk of COVID-19 mortality.


Subject(s)
Air Pollutants , Air Pollution , COVID-19 , Air Pollutants/analysis , Air Pollution/analysis , California/epidemiology , Environmental Exposure , Humans , Mortality , Nitrogen Dioxide/analysis , Particulate Matter/analysis , SARS-CoV-2
18.
Environ Int ; 157: 106862, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1474522

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Air pollution exposure has been associated with increased risk of COVID-19 incidence and mortality by ecological analyses. Few studies have investigated the specific effect of traffic-related air pollution on COVID-19 severity. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the associations of near-roadway air pollution (NRAP) exposure with COVID-19 severity and mortality using individual-level exposure and outcome data. METHODS: The retrospective cohort includes 75,010 individuals (mean age 42.5 years, 54% female, 66% Hispanic) diagnosed with COVID-19 at Kaiser Permanente Southern California between 3/1/2020-8/31/2020. NRAP exposures from both freeways and non-freeways during 1-year prior to the COVID-19 diagnosis date were estimated based on residential address history using the CALINE4 line source dispersion model. Primary outcomes include COVID-19 severity defined as COVID-19-related hospitalizations, intensive respiratory support (IRS), intensive care unit (ICU) admissions within 30 days, and mortality within 60 days after COVID-19 diagnosis. Covariates including socio-characteristics and comorbidities were adjusted for in the analysis. RESULT: One standard deviation (SD) increase in 1-year-averaged non-freeway NRAP (0.5 ppb NOx) was associated with increased odds of COVID-19-related IRS and ICU admission [OR (95% CI): 1.07 (1.01, 1.13) and 1.11 (1.04, 1.19) respectively] and increased risk of mortality (HR = 1.10, 95% CI = 1.03, 1.18). The associations of non-freeway NRAP with COVID-19 outcomes were largely independent of the effect of regional fine particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide exposures. These associations were generally consistent across age, sex, and race/ethnicity subgroups. The associations of freeway and total NRAP with COVID-19 severity and mortality were not statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS: Data from this multiethnic cohort suggested that NRAP, particularly non-freeway exposure in Southern California, may be associated with increased risk of COVID-19 severity and mortality among COVID-19 infected patients. Future studies are needed to assess the impact of emerging COVID-19 variants and chemical components from freeway and non-freeway NRAP.


Subject(s)
Air Pollutants , Air Pollution , COVID-19 , Adult , Air Pollutants/analysis , Air Pollutants/toxicity , Air Pollution/adverse effects , Air Pollution/analysis , COVID-19 Testing , California/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Environmental Exposure/adverse effects , Environmental Exposure/analysis , Female , Humans , Male , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
20.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(40): 1415-1419, 2021 Oct 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1456568

ABSTRACT

Data from observational studies demonstrate that variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, have evolved rapidly across many countries (1,2). The SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant of concern is more transmissible than previously identified variants,* and as of September 2021, is the predominant variant in the United States.† Studies characterizing the distribution and severity of illness caused by SARS-CoV-2 variants, particularly the Delta variant, are limited in the United States (3), and are subject to limitations related to study setting, specimen collection, study population, or study period (4-7). This study used whole genome sequencing (WGS) data on SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens collected across Kaiser Permanente Southern California (KPSC), a large integrated health care system, to describe the distribution and risk of hospitalization associated with SARS-CoV-2 variants during March 4-July 21, 2021, by patient vaccination status. Among 13,039 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens identified from KPSC patients during this period, 6,798 (52%) were sequenced and included in this report. Of these, 5,994 (88%) were collected from unvaccinated persons, 648 (10%) from fully vaccinated persons, and 156 (2%) from partially vaccinated persons. Among all sequenced specimens, the weekly percentage of B.1.1.7 (Alpha) variant infections increased from 20% to 67% during March 4-May 19, 2021. During April 15-July 21, 2021, the weekly percentage of Delta variant infections increased from 0% to 95%. During March 4-July 21, 2021, the weekly percentage of variants was similar among fully vaccinated and unvaccinated persons, but the Delta variant was more commonly identified among vaccinated persons then unvaccinated persons overall, relative to other variants. The Delta variant was more prevalent among younger persons, with the highest percentage (55%) identified among persons aged 18-44 years. Infections attributed to the Delta variant were also more commonly identified among non-Hispanic Black persons, relative to other variants. These findings reinforce the importance of continued monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 variants and implementing multiple COVID-19 prevention strategies, particularly during the current period in which Delta is the predominant variant circulating in the United States.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Delivery of Health Care, Integrated , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , California/epidemiology , Child , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Young Adult
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