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1.
Pediatr Infect Dis J ; 41(7): e275-e282, 2022 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1788552

ABSTRACT

We aimed to describe the historical perspectives and the current epidemiology of tropical, imported and local endemic infectious diseases in Japan in this review. Public health legislation for infectious diseases and immigration statistics were overviewed to provide the background of the infectious disease situation in Japan. Many tropical diseases were successfully controlled and eliminated in the latter half of the 20th century and the majority of those diseases are imported today. The trend of the main 15 imported infectious diseases before the advent of COVID-19 was summarized as well as local endemic infectious diseases in Japan. Transmission risks of traditional cuisines, lifestyles and nature exposures in Japan are introduced to guide clinicians for travel advice to prevent those local infectious diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases, Imported , Communicable Diseases , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Travel
3.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 1012, 2022 02 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1709629

ABSTRACT

Mitigation of SARS-CoV-2 transmission from international travel is a priority. We evaluated the effectiveness of travellers being required to quarantine for 14-days on return to England in Summer 2020. We identified 4,207 travel-related SARS-CoV-2 cases and their contacts, and identified 827 associated SARS-CoV-2 genomes. Overall, quarantine was associated with a lower rate of contacts, and the impact of quarantine was greatest in the 16-20 age-group. 186 SARS-CoV-2 genomes were sufficiently unique to identify travel-related clusters. Fewer genomically-linked cases were observed for index cases who returned from countries with quarantine requirement compared to countries with no quarantine requirement. This difference was explained by fewer importation events per identified genome for these cases, as opposed to fewer onward contacts per case. Overall, our study demonstrates that a 14-day quarantine period reduces, but does not completely eliminate, the onward transmission of imported cases, mainly by dissuading travel to countries with a quarantine requirement.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Quarantine/legislation & jurisprudence , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/transmission , Contact Tracing , England/epidemiology , Genome, Viral/genetics , Genomics , Health Impact Assessment , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/classification , Travel/legislation & jurisprudence , Travel-Related Illness
4.
Cochrane Database Syst Rev ; 10: CD013717, 2020 10 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1557155

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In late 2019, first cases of coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19, caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, were reported in Wuhan, China. Subsequently COVID-19 spread rapidly around the world. To contain the ensuing pandemic, numerous countries have implemented control measures related to international travel, including border closures, partial travel restrictions, entry or exit screening, and quarantine of travellers. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness of travel-related control measures during the COVID-19 pandemic on infectious disease and screening-related outcomes. SEARCH METHODS: We searched MEDLINE, Embase and COVID-19-specific databases, including the WHO Global Database on COVID-19 Research, the Cochrane COVID-19 Study Register, and the CDC COVID-19 Research Database on 26 June 2020. We also conducted backward-citation searches with existing reviews. SELECTION CRITERIA: We considered experimental, quasi-experimental, observational and modelling studies assessing the effects of travel-related control measures affecting human travel across national borders during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also included studies concerned with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) as indirect evidence. Primary outcomes were cases avoided, cases detected and a shift in epidemic development due to the measures. Secondary outcomes were other infectious disease transmission outcomes, healthcare utilisation, resource requirements and adverse effects if identified in studies assessing at least one primary outcome. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: One review author screened titles and abstracts; all excluded abstracts were screened in duplicate. Two review authors independently screened full texts. One review author extracted data, assessed risk of bias and appraised study quality. At least one additional review author checked for correctness of all data reported in the 'Risk of bias' assessment, quality appraisal and data synthesis. For assessing the risk of bias and quality of included studies, we used the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS-2) tool for observational studies concerned with screening, ROBINS-I for observational ecological studies and a bespoke tool for modelling studies. We synthesised findings narratively. One review author assessed certainty of evidence with GRADE, and the review author team discussed ratings. MAIN RESULTS: We included 40 records reporting on 36 unique studies. We found 17 modelling studies, 7 observational screening studies and one observational ecological study on COVID-19, four modelling and six observational studies on SARS, and one modelling study on SARS and MERS, covering a variety of settings and epidemic stages. Most studies compared travel-related control measures against a counterfactual scenario in which the intervention measure was not implemented. However, some modelling studies described additional comparator scenarios, such as different levels of travel restrictions, or a combination of measures. There were concerns with the quality of many modelling studies and the risk of bias of observational studies. Many modelling studies used potentially inappropriate assumptions about the structure and input parameters of models, and failed to adequately assess uncertainty. Concerns with observational screening studies commonly related to the reference test and the flow of the screening process. Studies on COVID-19 Travel restrictions reducing cross-border travel Eleven studies employed models to simulate a reduction in travel volume; one observational ecological study assessed travel restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Very low-certainty evidence from modelling studies suggests that when implemented at the beginning of the outbreak, cross-border travel restrictions may lead to a reduction in the number of new cases of between 26% to 90% (4 studies), the number of deaths (1 study), the time to outbreak of between 2 and 26 days (2 studies), the risk of outbreak of between 1% to 37% (2 studies), and the effective reproduction number (1 modelling and 1 observational ecological study). Low-certainty evidence from modelling studies suggests a reduction in the number of imported or exported cases of between 70% to 81% (5 studies), and in the growth acceleration of epidemic progression (1 study). Screening at borders with or without quarantine Evidence from three modelling studies of entry and exit symptom screening without quarantine suggests delays in the time to outbreak of between 1 to 183 days (very low-certainty evidence) and a detection rate of infected travellers of between 10% to 53% (low-certainty evidence). Six observational studies of entry and exit screening were conducted in specific settings such as evacuation flights and cruise ship outbreaks. Screening approaches varied but followed a similar structure, involving symptom screening of all individuals at departure or upon arrival, followed by quarantine, and different procedures for observation and PCR testing over a period of at least 14 days. The proportion of cases detected ranged from 0% to 91% (depending on the screening approach), and the positive predictive value ranged from 0% to 100% (very low-certainty evidence). The outcomes, however, should be interpreted in relation to both the screening approach used and the prevalence of infection among the travellers screened; for example, symptom-based screening alone generally performed worse than a combination of symptom-based and PCR screening with subsequent observation during quarantine. Quarantine of travellers Evidence from one modelling study simulating a 14-day quarantine suggests a reduction in the number of cases seeded by imported cases; larger reductions were seen with increasing levels of quarantine compliance ranging from 277 to 19 cases with rates of compliance modelled between 70% to 100% (very low-certainty evidence). AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: With much of the evidence deriving from modelling studies, notably for travel restrictions reducing cross-border travel and quarantine of travellers, there is a lack of 'real-life' evidence for many of these measures. The certainty of the evidence for most travel-related control measures is very low and the true effects may be substantially different from those reported here. Nevertheless, some travel-related control measures during the COVID-19 pandemic may have a positive impact on infectious disease outcomes. Broadly, travel restrictions may limit the spread of disease across national borders. Entry and exit symptom screening measures on their own are not likely to be effective in detecting a meaningful proportion of cases to prevent seeding new cases within the protected region; combined with subsequent quarantine, observation and PCR testing, the effectiveness is likely to improve. There was insufficient evidence to draw firm conclusions about the effectiveness of travel-related quarantine on its own. Some of the included studies suggest that effects are likely to depend on factors such as the stage of the epidemic, the interconnectedness of countries, local measures undertaken to contain community transmission, and the extent of implementation and adherence.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Travel-Related Illness , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Observational Studies as Topic , Quarantine , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/epidemiology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/prevention & control
6.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(31)2021 08 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319070

ABSTRACT

Since its outbreak in December 2019, the novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) has spread to 191 countries and caused millions of deaths. Many countries have experienced multiple epidemic waves and faced containment pressures from both domestic and international transmission. In this study, we conduct a multiscale geographic analysis of the spread of COVID-19 in a policy-influenced dynamic network to quantify COVID-19 importation risk under different policy scenarios using evidence from China. Our spatial dynamic panel data (SDPD) model explicitly distinguishes the effects of travel flows from the effects of transmissibility within cities, across cities, and across national borders. We find that within-city transmission was the dominant transmission mechanism in China at the beginning of the outbreak and that all domestic transmission mechanisms were muted or significantly weakened before importation posed a threat. We identify effective containment policies by matching the change points of domestic and importation transmissibility parameters to the timing of various interventions. Our simulations suggest that importation risk is limited when domestic transmission is under control, but that cumulative cases would have been almost 13 times higher if domestic transmissibility had resurged to its precontainment level after importation and 32 times higher if domestic transmissibility had remained at its precontainment level since the outbreak. Our findings provide practical insights into infectious disease containment and call for collaborative and coordinated global suppression efforts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/transmission , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , China/epidemiology , Cities , Communicable Disease Control/legislation & jurisprudence , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Humans , Models, Statistical , Risk , SARS-CoV-2 , Spatio-Temporal Analysis , Travel
7.
Global Health ; 17(1): 62, 2021 06 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1274573

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The near universal adoption of cross-border health measures during the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide has prompted significant debate about their effectiveness and compliance with international law. The number of measures used, and the range of measures applied, have far exceeded previous public health emergencies of international concern. However, efforts to advance research, policy and practice to support their effective use has been hindered by a lack of clear and consistent definition. RESULTS: Based on a review of existing datasets for cross-border health measures, such as the Oxford Coronavirus Government Response Tracker and World Health Organization Public Health and Social Measures, along with analysis of secondary and grey literature, we propose six categories to define measures more clearly and consistently - policy goal, type of movement (travel and trade), adopted by public or private sector, level of jurisdiction applied, stage of journey, and degree of restrictiveness. These categories are then brought together into a proposed typology that can support research with generalizable findings and comparative analyses across jurisdictions. Addressing the current gaps in evidence about travel measures, including how different jurisdictions apply such measures with varying effects, in turn, enhances the potential for evidence-informed decision-making based on fuller understanding of policy trade-offs and externalities. Finally, through the adoption of standardized terminology and creation of an agreed evidentiary base recognized across jurisdictions, the typology can support efforts to strengthen coordinated global responses to outbreaks and inform future efforts to revise the WHO International Health Regulations (2005). CONCLUSIONS: The widespread use of cross-border health measures during the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted significant reflection on available evidence, previous practice and existing legal frameworks. The typology put forth in this paper aims to provide a starting point for strengthening research, policy and practice.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Global Health , Public Policy , Travel/legislation & jurisprudence , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans
8.
Travel Med Infect Dis ; 41: 102044, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1171225

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Imported COVID-19 cases, if unchecked, can jeopardize the effort of domestic containment. We aim to find out what sustainable border control options for different entities (e.g., countries, states) exist during the reopening phases, given their own choice of domestic control measures. METHODS: We propose a SUIHR model, which has built-in imported risk and (1-tier) contact tracing to study the cross-border spreading and control of COVID-19. Under plausible parameter assumptions, we examine the effectiveness of border control policies, in combination with internal measures, to confine the virus and avoid reverting back to more restrictive life styles again. RESULTS: When the basic reproduction number R0 of COVID-19 exceeds 2.5, even 100% effective contact tracing alone is not enough to contain the spreading. For an entity that has completely eliminated the virus domestically, and resumes "normal", without mandatory institutional quarantine, even very strict border control measures combined with effective contact tracing can only delay another outbreak by 6 months. For entities employing a confining domestic control policy, non-increasing net imported cases is sufficient to remain open. CONCLUSIONS: Extremely strict border control in entities, where domestic spreading is currently eliminated (e.g., China), is justifiable. However such harsh measure are not necessary for other places. Entities successfully confining the virus by internal measures can open up to similar entities without additional border controls so long as the imported risk stays non-increasing. Opening the borders to entities lacking sufficient internal control of the virus should be exercised in combination with pre-departure screening and tests upon arrival.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Public Policy , Travel , Basic Reproduction Number , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/transmission , Contact Tracing/methods , Disease Outbreaks/prevention & control , Government , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Pandemics/prevention & control , Quarantine/methods , SARS-CoV-2
9.
Cochrane Database Syst Rev ; 3: CD013717, 2021 03 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1148783

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In late 2019, the first cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were reported in Wuhan, China, followed by a worldwide spread. Numerous countries have implemented control measures related to international travel, including border closures, travel restrictions, screening at borders, and quarantine of travellers. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness of international travel-related control measures during the COVID-19 pandemic on infectious disease transmission and screening-related outcomes. SEARCH METHODS: We searched MEDLINE, Embase and COVID-19-specific databases, including the Cochrane COVID-19 Study Register and the WHO Global Database on COVID-19 Research to 13 November 2020. SELECTION CRITERIA: We considered experimental, quasi-experimental, observational and modelling studies assessing the effects of travel-related control measures affecting human travel across international borders during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the original review, we also considered evidence on severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). In this version we decided to focus on COVID-19 evidence only. Primary outcome categories were (i) cases avoided, (ii) cases detected, and (iii) a shift in epidemic development. Secondary outcomes were other infectious disease transmission outcomes, healthcare utilisation, resource requirements and adverse effects if identified in studies assessing at least one primary outcome. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two review authors independently screened titles and abstracts and subsequently full texts. For studies included in the analysis, one review author extracted data and appraised the study. At least one additional review author checked for correctness of data. To assess the risk of bias and quality of included studies, we used the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS-2) tool for observational studies concerned with screening, and a bespoke tool for modelling studies. We synthesised findings narratively. One review author assessed the certainty of evidence with GRADE, and several review authors discussed these GRADE judgements. MAIN RESULTS: Overall, we included 62 unique studies in the analysis; 49 were modelling studies and 13 were observational studies. Studies covered a variety of settings and levels of community transmission. Most studies compared travel-related control measures against a counterfactual scenario in which the measure was not implemented. However, some modelling studies described additional comparator scenarios, such as different levels of stringency of the measures (including relaxation of restrictions), or a combination of measures. Concerns with the quality of modelling studies related to potentially inappropriate assumptions about the structure and input parameters, and an inadequate assessment of model uncertainty. Concerns with risk of bias in observational studies related to the selection of travellers and the reference test, and unclear reporting of certain methodological aspects. Below we outline the results for each intervention category by illustrating the findings from selected outcomes. Travel restrictions reducing or stopping cross-border travel (31 modelling studies) The studies assessed cases avoided and shift in epidemic development. We found very low-certainty evidence for a reduction in COVID-19 cases in the community (13 studies) and cases exported or imported (9 studies). Most studies reported positive effects, with effect sizes varying widely; only a few studies showed no effect. There was very low-certainty evidence that cross-border travel controls can slow the spread of COVID-19. Most studies predicted positive effects, however, results from individual studies varied from a delay of less than one day to a delay of 85 days; very few studies predicted no effect of the measure. Screening at borders (13 modelling studies; 13 observational studies) Screening measures covered symptom/exposure-based screening or test-based screening (commonly specifying polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing), or both, before departure or upon or within a few days of arrival. Studies assessed cases avoided, shift in epidemic development and cases detected. Studies generally predicted or observed some benefit from screening at borders, however these varied widely. For symptom/exposure-based screening, one modelling study reported that global implementation of screening measures would reduce the number of cases exported per day from another country by 82% (95% confidence interval (CI) 72% to 95%) (moderate-certainty evidence). Four modelling studies predicted delays in epidemic development, although there was wide variation in the results between the studies (very low-certainty evidence). Four modelling studies predicted that the proportion of cases detected would range from 1% to 53% (very low-certainty evidence). Nine observational studies observed the detected proportion to range from 0% to 100% (very low-certainty evidence), although all but one study observed this proportion to be less than 54%. For test-based screening, one modelling study provided very low-certainty evidence for the number of cases avoided. It reported that testing travellers reduced imported or exported cases as well as secondary cases. Five observational studies observed that the proportion of cases detected varied from 58% to 90% (very low-certainty evidence). Quarantine (12 modelling studies) The studies assessed cases avoided, shift in epidemic development and cases detected. All studies suggested some benefit of quarantine, however the magnitude of the effect ranged from small to large across the different outcomes (very low- to low-certainty evidence). Three modelling studies predicted that the reduction in the number of cases in the community ranged from 450 to over 64,000 fewer cases (very low-certainty evidence). The variation in effect was possibly related to the duration of quarantine and compliance. Quarantine and screening at borders (7 modelling studies; 4 observational studies) The studies assessed shift in epidemic development and cases detected. Most studies predicted positive effects for the combined measures with varying magnitudes (very low- to low-certainty evidence). Four observational studies observed that the proportion of cases detected for quarantine and screening at borders ranged from 68% to 92% (low-certainty evidence). The variation may depend on how the measures were combined, including the length of the quarantine period and days when the test was conducted in quarantine. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: With much of the evidence derived from modelling studies, notably for travel restrictions reducing or stopping cross-border travel and quarantine of travellers, there is a lack of 'real-world' evidence. The certainty of the evidence for most travel-related control measures and outcomes is very low and the true effects are likely to be substantially different from those reported here. Broadly, travel restrictions may limit the spread of disease across national borders. Symptom/exposure-based screening measures at borders on their own are likely not effective; PCR testing at borders as a screening measure likely detects more cases than symptom/exposure-based screening at borders, although if performed only upon arrival this will likely also miss a meaningful proportion of cases. Quarantine, based on a sufficiently long quarantine period and high compliance is likely to largely avoid further transmission from travellers. Combining quarantine with PCR testing at borders will likely improve effectiveness. Many studies suggest that effects depend on factors, such as levels of community transmission, travel volumes and duration, other public health measures in place, and the exact specification and timing of the measure. Future research should be better reported, employ a range of designs beyond modelling and assess potential benefits and harms of the travel-related control measures from a societal perspective.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Travel-Related Illness , Bias , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Humans , Internationality , Models, Theoretical , Observational Studies as Topic , Quarantine
10.
BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 551, 2021 03 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1143199

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) confirmed cases overseas have continued to rise in the last months, and many people overseas have chosen to return to China. This increases the risk of a large number of imported cases which may cause a relapse of the COVID-19 outbreak. In order to prevent imported infection, the Shenzhen government has implemented a closed-loop management strategy using nucleic acid testing (NAT) for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and requiring 14 days of medical observation for individuals with an overseas tour history (Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan province and other countries). Our study aims to describe the status of COVID-19 infection among people entering Shenzhen, and to evaluate the effect of the closed-loop management strategy. METHODS: We undertook a descriptive study and risk analysis by the entry time, time of reporting, and local confirmed cases in countries of origin. The NAT were completed in Shenzhen Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ten district-level CDCs, and fever clinics. RESULTS: A total of 86,844 people from overseas entered Shenzhen from January 1 to April 18, 2020; there were 39 imported COVID cases and 293 close contacts. The infection rate of people entering was 4.49‰ [95% Confidence interval (CI): 3.26‰-6.05‰]. Fourteen imported cases (35.9%) came from the UK, and nine (23.08%) came from the USA. People entering from the USA since March 9 or from the UK since March 13 are the high-risk population. As of July 17, there have been no new confirmed cases in Shenzhen for 153 days, and the numbers of confirmed case, close contacts, and asymptomatic cases are 0. CONCLUSIONS: The closed-loop management has been effective in preventing imported infection and controlling domestic relapse. The distribution of entry time and report time for imported cases overseas was similar. This shows that it is important to implement closed-loop management at the port of entry.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , China/epidemiology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
11.
N Z Med J ; 134(1529): 26-38, 2021 02 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1080082

ABSTRACT

AIM: We aimed to estimate the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks in a COVID-19-free destination country (New Zealand) associated with shore leave by merchant ship crews who were infected prior to their departure or on their ship. METHODS: We used a stochastic version of the SEIR model CovidSIM v1.1 designed specifically for COVID-19. It was populated with parameters for SARS-CoV-2 transmission, shipping characteristics and plausible control measures. RESULTS: When no control interventions were in place, we estimated that an outbreak of COVID-19 in New Zealand would occur after a median time of 23 days (assuming a global average for source country incidence of 2.66 new infections per 1,000 population per week, crews of 20 with a voyage length of 10 days and 1 day of shore leave per crew member both in New Zealand and abroad, and 108 port visits by international merchant ships per week). For this example, the uncertainty around when outbreaks occur is wide (an outbreak occurs with 95% probability between 1 and 124 days). The combination of PCR testing on arrival, self-reporting of symptoms with contact tracing and mask use during shore leave increased this median time to 1.0 year (14 days to 5.4 years, or a 49% probability within a year). Scenario analyses found that onboard infection chains could persist for well over 4 weeks, even with crews of only 5 members. CONCLUSION: This modelling work suggests that the introduction of SARS-CoV-2 through shore leave from international shipping crews is likely, even after long voyages. But the risk can be substantially mitigated by control measures such as PCR testing and mask use.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Disease Transmission, Infectious , Naval Medicine , Quarantine/methods , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Ships , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , Communicable Disease Control/instrumentation , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Computer Simulation , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Disease Transmission, Infectious/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Masks , Naval Medicine/methods , Naval Medicine/statistics & numerical data , New Zealand/epidemiology
12.
N Z Med J ; 134(1529): 10-25, 2021 02 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1080064

ABSTRACT

AIMS: We developed a model, updated daily, to estimate undetected COVID-19 infections exiting quarantine following selectively opening New Zealand's borders to travellers from low-risk countries. METHODS: The prevalence of infectious COVID-19 cases by country was multiplied by expected monthly passenger volumes to predict the rate of arrivals. The rate of undetected infections entering the border following screening and quarantine was estimated. Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 countries were defined as those with an active COVID-19 prevalence of up to 1/105, 10/105 and 100/105, respectively. RESULTS: With 65,272 travellers per month, the number of undetected COVID-19 infections exiting quarantine is 1 every 45, 15 and 31 months for Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 countries, respectively. The overall rate of undetected active COVID-19 infections exiting quarantine is expected to increase from the current 0.40 to 0.50 per month, or an increase of one extra infection every 10 months. CONCLUSIONS: Loosening border restrictions results in a small increase in the rate of undetected COVID-19 infections exiting quarantine, which increases from the current baseline by one infection every 10 months. This information may be useful in guiding decision-making on selectively opening of borders in the COVID-19 era.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Communicable Diseases, Imported , Disease Transmission, Infectious , International Health Regulations , Quarantine , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/transmission , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Disease Transmission, Infectious/statistics & numerical data , Forecasting , Global Health , Humans , International Health Regulations/organization & administration , International Health Regulations/trends , New Zealand/epidemiology , Prevalence , Public Policy , Quarantine/organization & administration , Quarantine/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2 , Travel/legislation & jurisprudence , Travel/statistics & numerical data
13.
Lancet Public Health ; 6(1): e12-e20, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1072035

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Countries have restricted international arrivals to delay the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). These measures carry a high economic and social cost, and might have little effect on COVID-19 epidemics if there are many more cases resulting from local transmission compared with imported cases. Our study aims to investigate the extent to which imported cases contribute to local transmission under different epidemic conditions. METHODS: To inform decisions about international travel restrictions, we calculated the ratio of expected COVID-19 cases from international travel (assuming no travel restrictions) to expected cases arising from internal spread, expressed as a proportion, on an average day in May and September, 2020, in each country. COVID-19 prevalence and incidence were estimated using a modelling framework that adjusts reported cases for under-ascertainment and asymptomatic infections. We considered different travel scenarios for May and September, 2020: an upper bound with estimated travel volumes at the same levels as May and September, 2019, and a lower bound with estimated travel volumes adjusted downwards according to expected reductions in May and September, 2020. Results were interpreted in the context of local epidemic growth rates. FINDINGS: In May, 2020, imported cases are likely to have accounted for a high proportion of total incidence in many countries, contributing more than 10% of total incidence in 102 (95% credible interval 63-129) of 136 countries when assuming no reduction in travel volumes (ie, with 2019 travel volumes) and in 74 countries (33-114) when assuming estimated 2020 travel volumes. Imported cases in September, 2020, would have accounted for no more than 10% of total incidence in 106 (50-140) of 162 countries and less than 1% in 21 countries (4-71) when assuming no reductions in travel volumes. With estimated 2020 travel volumes, imported cases in September, 2020, accounted for no more than 10% of total incidence in 125 countries (65-162) and less than 1% in 44 countries (8-97). Of these 44 countries, 22 (2-61) had epidemic growth rates far from the tipping point of exponential growth, making them the least likely to benefit from travel restrictions. INTERPRETATION: Countries can expect travellers infected with SARS-CoV-2 to arrive in the absence of travel restrictions. Although such restrictions probably contribute to epidemic control in many countries, in others, imported cases are likely to contribute little to local COVID-19 epidemics. Stringent travel restrictions might have little impact on epidemic dynamics except in countries with low COVID-19 incidence and large numbers of arrivals from other countries, or where epidemics are close to tipping points for exponential growth. Countries should consider local COVID-19 incidence, local epidemic growth, and travel volumes before implementing such restrictions. FUNDING: Wellcome Trust, UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, European Commission, National Institute for Health Research, Medical Research Council, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Epidemics , Internationality , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Travel/legislation & jurisprudence
15.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(3): 710-718, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1054979

ABSTRACT

Public health travel restrictions (PHTR) are crucial measures during communicable disease outbreaks to prevent transmission during commercial airline travel and mitigate cross-border importation and spread. We evaluated PHTR implementation for US citizens on the Diamond Princess during its coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Japan in February 2020 to explore how PHTR reduced importation of COVID-19 to the United States during the early phase of disease containment. Using PHTR required substantial collaboration among the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, other US government agencies, the cruise line, and public health authorities in Japan. Original US PHTR removal criteria were modified to reflect international testing protocols and enable removal of PHTR for persons who recovered from illness. The impact of PHTR on epidemic trajectory depends on the risk for transmission during travel and geographic spread of disease. Lessons learned from the Diamond Princess outbreak provide critical information for future PHTR use.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Disease Outbreaks/prevention & control , Quarantine , Travel , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Government , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Risk Factors , Ships , United States/epidemiology , Young Adult
16.
BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 225, 2021 01 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1052411

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The first COVID-19 cases were diagnosed in Australia on 25 January 2020. Initial epidiemiology showed that the majority of cases were in returned travellers from overseas. One aspect of Public Health response was to introduce compulsory 14 day quarantine for all travellers returning to New South Wales (NSW) by air or sea in Special Health Accommodation (SHA). We aim to outline the establishment of a specialised health quarantine accommodation service in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and describe the first month of COVID-19 screening. METHODS: The SHA was established with a comprehensive governance structure, remote clinical management through Royal Prince Alfred Virtual Hospital (rpavirtual) and site management with health care workers, NSW Police and accommodation staff. RESULTS: From 29 March to 29 April 2020, 373 returning travellers were admitted to the SHA from Sydney Airport. 88 (26.1%) of those swabbed were positive for SARS-CoV 2. The day of diagnosis of COVID-19 varied from Day 1 to Day 13, with 63.6% (n = 56) of these in the first week of quarantine. 50% of the people in the SHA were referred to rpavirtual for ongoing clinical management. Seven people required admission to hospital for ongoing clinical care. CONCLUSION: The Public Health response to COVID-19 in Australia included early and increased case detection through testing, tracing of contacts of confirmed cases, social distancing and prohibition of gatherings. In addition to these measures, the introduction of mandated quarantine for travellers to Australia was integral to the successful containment of COVID-19 in NSW and Australia through the prevention of transmission locally and interstate from returning travellers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Health Services , Public Health , Quarantine/legislation & jurisprudence , Travel/legislation & jurisprudence , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , New South Wales/epidemiology , Young Adult
18.
J Travel Med ; 27(8)2020 12 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-998402

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: With more countries exiting lockdown, public health safety requires screening measures at international travel entry points that can prevent the reintroduction or importation of the severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus-2. Here, we estimate the number of cases captured, quarantining days averted and secondary cases expected to occur with screening interventions. METHODS: To estimate active case exportation risk from 153 countries with recorded coronavirus disease-2019 cases and deaths, we created a simple data-driven framework to calculate the number of infectious and upcoming infectious individuals out of 100 000 000 potential travellers from each country, and assessed six importation risk reduction strategies; Strategy 1 (S1) has no screening on entry, S2 tests all travellers and isolates test-positives where those who test negative at 7 days are permitted entry, S3 the equivalent but for a 14 day period, S4 quarantines all travellers for 7 days where all are subsequently permitted entry, S5 the equivalent for 14 days and S6 the testing of all travellers and prevention of entry for those who test positive. RESULTS: The average reduction in case importation across countries relative to S1 is 90.2% for S2, 91.7% for S3, 55.4% for S4, 91.2% for S5 and 77.2% for S6. An average of 79.6% of infected travellers are infectious upon arrival. For the top 100 exporting countries, an 88.2% average reduction in secondary cases is expected through S2 with the 7-day isolation of test-positives, increasing to 92.1% for S3 for 14-day isolation. A substantially smaller reduction of 30.0% is expected for 7-day all traveller quarantining, increasing to 84.3% for 14-day all traveller quarantining. CONCLUSIONS: The testing and isolation of test-positives should be implemented provided good testing practices are in place. If testing is not feasible, quarantining for a minimum of 14 days is recommended with strict adherence measures in place.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Communicable Diseases, Imported , Mass Screening/methods , Quarantine/methods , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Air Travel/statistics & numerical data , Airports/organization & administration , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/legislation & jurisprudence , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Communicable Diseases, Imported/diagnosis , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Epidemiological Monitoring , Global Health , Humans , Risk Assessment/methods , Risk Assessment/statistics & numerical data
19.
Epidemiology ; 32(1): 79-86, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-972117

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We hypothesize that comprehensive surveillance of COVID-19 in Singapore has facilitated early case detection and prompt contact tracing and, with community-based measures, contained spread. We assessed the effectiveness of containment measures by estimating transmissibility (effective reproduction number, (Equation is included in full-text article.)) over the course of the outbreak. METHODS: We used a Bayesian data augmentation framework to allocate infectors to infectees with no known infectors and determine serial interval distribution parameters via Markov chain Monte Carlo sampling. We fitted a smoothing spline to the number of secondary cases generated by each infector by respective onset dates to estimate (Equation is included in full-text article.)and evaluated increase in mean number of secondary cases per individual for each day's delay in starting isolation or quarantine. RESULTS: As of April 1, 2020, 1000 COVID-19 cases were reported in Singapore. We estimated a mean serial interval of 4.6 days [95% credible interval (CI) = 4.2, 5.1] with a SD of 3.5 days (95% CI = 3.1, 4.0). The posterior mean (Equation is included in full-text article.)was below one for most of the time, peaking at 1.1 (95% CI = 1.0, 1.3) on week 9 of 2020 due to a spreading event in one of the clusters. Eight hundred twenty-seven (82.7%) of cases infected less than one person on average. Over an interval of 7 days, the incremental mean number of cases generated per individual for each day's delay in starting isolation or quarantine was 0.03 cases (95% CI = 0.02, 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: We estimate that robust surveillance, active case detection, prompt contact tracing, and quarantine of close contacts kept (Equation is included in full-text article.)below one.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Health Policy , Basic Reproduction Number , Bayes Theorem , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases, Imported/transmission , Contact Tracing , Early Diagnosis , Epidemiological Monitoring , Humans , Markov Chains , Mass Screening , Monte Carlo Method , Singapore/epidemiology , Travel
20.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 69(45): 1681-1685, 2020 Nov 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-922983

ABSTRACT

In January 2020, with support from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), CDC instituted an enhanced entry risk assessment and management (screening) program for air passengers arriving from certain countries with widespread, sustained transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The objectives of the screening program were to reduce the importation of COVID-19 cases into the United States and slow subsequent spread within states. Screening aimed to identify travelers with COVID-19-like illness or who had a known exposure to a person with COVID-19 and separate them from others. Screening also aimed to inform all screened travelers about self-monitoring and other recommendations to prevent disease spread and obtain their contact information to share with public health authorities in destination states. CDC delegated postarrival management of crew members to airline occupational health programs by issuing joint guidance with the Federal Aviation Administration.* During January 17-September 13, 2020, a total of 766,044 travelers were screened, 298 (0.04%) of whom met criteria for public health assessment; 35 (0.005%) were tested for SARS-CoV-2, and nine (0.001%) had a positive test result. CDC shared contact information with states for approximately 68% of screened travelers because of data collection challenges and some states' opting out of receiving data. The low case detection rate of this resource-intensive program highlighted the need for fundamental change in the U.S. border health strategy. Because SARS-CoV-2 infection and transmission can occur in the absence of symptoms and because the symptoms of COVID-19 are nonspecific, symptom-based screening programs are ineffective for case detection. Since the screening program ended on September 14, 2020, efforts to reduce COVID-19 importation have focused on enhancing communications with travelers to promote recommended preventive measures, reinforcing mechanisms to refer overtly ill travelers to CDC, and enhancing public health response capacity at ports of entry. More efficient collection of contact information for international air passengers before arrival and real-time transfer of data to U.S. health departments would facilitate timely postarrival public health management, including contact tracing, when indicated. Incorporating health attestations, predeparture and postarrival testing, and a period of limited movement after higher-risk travel, might reduce risk for transmission during travel and translocation of SARS-CoV-2 between geographic areas and help guide more individualized postarrival recommendations.


Subject(s)
Airports , Communicable Diseases, Imported/prevention & control , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Mass Screening , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , COVID-19 , Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. , Communicable Diseases, Imported/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Risk Assessment , Travel , United States/epidemiology
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