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1.
Saúde Soc ; 31(1): e210294, 2022.
Article in Portuguese | WHO COVID, LILACS (Americas) | ID: covidwho-1817578

ABSTRACT

Resumo Este texto apresenta uma atividade grupal desenvolvida durante a epidemia de covid-19 em espaço virtual, com 13 participantes, estudantes e professores universitários. O objetivo foi oferecer um espaço de escuta protegido e criar estratégias para enfrentar a angústia e o medo decorrentes da epidemia. A ferramenta metodológica utilizada foi a intervenção grupal, realizada entre maio e agosto de 2020, que operou como uma rede de conversação. No grupo, produziu-se um diálogo horizontal com temas escolhidos conjuntamente e buscando soluções compartilhadas para diversos problemas. Este artigo analisa o diálogo ocorrido nos encontros em que se falou sobre o medo. Neles, os(as) participantes identificaram o medo da morte e da perda de pessoas amadas como aquele que desperta maior sofrimento, acentuado quando as pessoas estão distantes geograficamente. A avaliação mostrou que os encontros e os diálogos produziram alívio e bem-estar, e que trabalhar em plataforma virtual não constituiu empecilho à comunicação. Grupos de intervenção desenvolvidos em espaço virtual compõem metodologias de baixo custo, porém potentes, fáceis de operar e possíveis de serem nucleadas nos mais diversos coletivos.


Abstract This paper describes a virtual group activity developed during the covid-19 pandemic with 13 university students and professors. Based on a group intervention operating as a conversation network, carried out between May and August 2020, the goal was to offer a safe listening space and to create strategies to cope with the anguish and fear resulting from the pandemic. The group engaged in horizontal dialogue on topics chosen jointly, seeking shared solutions to various problems. This article analyzes the dialogue that took place during meetings where fear was discussed. In these meetings, participants identified the fear of death and loss of loved ones as the feelings that arouse the most suffering, heightened when people are geographically distant. The analysis showed that such meetings and dialogues produced relief and well-being, and that working on a virtual platform did not hinder communication. Intervention groups developed virtually are low-cost yet powerful methodologies, easy to operate and possible to be implemented in the most diverse collectives.


Subject(s)
Humans , Male , Female , Adaptation, Psychological , Mental Health , Death , Fear , Internet-Based Intervention , COVID-19
3.
PLoS One ; 17(2): e0263607, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1666781

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A reduction in overall acute coronary syndrome (ACS) cases, increases in the severity of ACS presentation, and increased rates of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) have been reported from multiple countries during the COVID-19 pandemic. The attributed factors include COVID-19 infection, fear of COVID-19 and resultant avoidance of health care facilities, and restrictions on mobility. Pakistan, a country with a high burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and challenges related to health care access, will be expected to demonstrate these same findings. Therefore, we compared ACS hospitalization, ACS severity, and patients who have already died (dead on arrival, or DOA) due to presumed OHCA at a tertiary cardiac hospital during pre-pandemic and intra-pandemic periods in Pakistan. METHODS: Standardized data elements were extracted from the charts of patients with ACS, and telephonic verbal autopsies (VA) using a validated tool were conducted for patients who were arrived DOA. As a comparison, cases during the same months prior to the COVID-19 were analyzed for respective waves. Events were counted, and proportions and frequencies are reported for each time period. RESULTS: A total of 4,480 ACS cases were reviewed; 1,216 cases during March-July 2019, 804 cases in the same months of 2020 (33.8% decrease); 1,304 cases in August 2019-January 2020 and 1,157 in the corresponding months of 2020 and 2021 (11.2% decrease). There was no observed change in the baseline characteristics of patients with ACS or their symptom-to-door time, and in-hospital mortality was unchanged across all time periods. There were 218 DOA cases in pre-pandemic months and 360 cases during the pandemic. The pre-pandemic rate of DOA was 12/1000 emergency patients (95% CI 10-13) compared to 22/1000 (95% CI 22-27) during the pandemic (30/1000in the 1st wave and 17/1000 during 2nd wave). On VA, CVD was found to be the major cause of death during both time periods. CONCLUSION: At a cardiac hospital in Pakistan, the COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a reduction in ACS hospitalization and an increased DOA rate.


Subject(s)
Acute Coronary Syndrome/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Death , Hospitalization , Hospitals, Urban , Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest/epidemiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Tertiary Care Centers , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Female , Hospital Mortality , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Pakistan/epidemiology
5.
J Pain Symptom Manage ; 63(1): 98-105, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1632820

ABSTRACT

CONTEXTS: Inadequate pain management in community pediatric palliative care is common. Evidence to inform improved pain management in this population is limited. OBJECTIVES: To explore the barriers and facilitators to pediatric community-based pain management for infants, children and young people at end-of-life as perceived by healthcare professionals. METHODS: A qualitative interview study was conducted. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with 29 healthcare professionals; 12 nurses, five GPs, five consultants and registrar doctors, two pharmacists and five support therapists working in primary, secondary or tertiary care in the United Kingdom and involved in community end-of life care of 0 to 18-year-olds. RESULTS: The data corpus was analyzed using an inductive thematic analysis and seven themes emerged: parents' abilities, beliefs and wellbeing; working relationships between families and healthcare professionals, and between healthcare teams; healthcare professionals' knowledge, education and experience; health services delivery; nature of pain treatment; and pediatric-specific factors. Across themes, the concepts of partnership working between families and healthcare professionals, and within healthcare teams, and sharing expertise were prevalent. CONCLUSION: Partnership working and trust between healthcare professionals and parents, and within healthcare teams, is needed for effective at-home pediatric palliative pain management. Community healthcare professionals require more education from experienced multidisciplinary teams to effectively manage pediatric pain at end-of-life and prevent emergency hospice or hospital admissions, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pain Management , Adolescent , Child , Death , Delivery of Health Care , Health Personnel , Humans , Infant , Pandemics , Qualitative Research , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Acta Biomed ; 92(S2): e2021330, 2021 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625871

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIM OF THE WORK: In a society that tries so hard to forget and make people forget that death exists, death has never been so close to man in his daily life as during this pandemic. Health care professionals have therefore all too often had to  deal with the death of the people they care for and with related issues such as, for example, the dignity of death, the humanization of death and care for the dying. The aim of the study is to highlight the perceptions of physicians, nurses and health and social workers in the difficult moment of the end of life, also analyzing which coping strategies were implemented by them. METHODS: All Italian healthcare workers were enrolled in this survey. The questionnaire was administered in an online version. Physicians, nurses and support staff (social and health workers) were contacted through social networks. RESULTS: A total of 512 healthcare workers were enrolled in this survey. No statistical significant differences were recorded among the COPE-NVI- 25 sub dimensions according to sex, profession and to different wards. Additionally, by considering the COPE-NVI-25 sub dimensions according to years of work experience, a statistical significant difference was reported in the Transcendent Orientation sub dimension (p=.047), as healthcare workers with 11-20 years of work experience recorded higher levels than the other two groups. By considering differences in the COPE-NVI-25 sub dimensions according to religion, significant differences were recorded in the transcendent orientation (p=.032), in the positive attitude (p=.030), in the social support (p=.035). CONCLUSIONS: From the evidence in the literature, the quality of end-of-life care performance has a positive correlation with awareness of a good death and attitudes towards end-of-life care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adaptation, Psychological , Death , Health Personnel , Humans , Male , Pilot Projects , SARS-CoV-2
8.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 71(1): 19-25, 2022 Jan 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1608771

ABSTRACT

Vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is highly effective at preventing COVID-19-associated hospitalization and death; however, some vaccinated persons might develop COVID-19 with severe outcomes† (1,2). Using data from 465 facilities in a large U.S. health care database, this study assessed the frequency of and risk factors for developing a severe COVID-19 outcome after completing a primary COVID-19 vaccination series (primary vaccination), defined as receipt of 2 doses of an mRNA vaccine (BNT162b2 [Pfizer-BioNTech] or mRNA-1273 [Moderna]) or a single dose of JNJ-78436735 [Janssen (Johnson & Johnson)] ≥14 days before illness onset. Severe COVID-19 outcomes were defined as hospitalization with a diagnosis of acute respiratory failure, need for noninvasive ventilation (NIV), admission to an intensive care unit (ICU) including all persons requiring invasive mechanical ventilation, or death (including discharge to hospice). Among 1,228,664 persons who completed primary vaccination during December 2020-October 2021, a total of 2,246 (18.0 per 10,000 vaccinated persons) developed COVID-19 and 189 (1.5 per 10,000) had a severe outcome, including 36 who died (0.3 deaths per 10,000). Risk for severe outcomes was higher among persons who were aged ≥65 years, were immunosuppressed, or had at least one of six other underlying conditions. All persons with severe outcomes had at least one of these risk factors, and 77.8% of those who died had four or more risk factors. Severe COVID-19 outcomes after primary vaccination are rare; however, vaccinated persons who are aged ≥65 years, are immunosuppressed, or have other underlying conditions might be at increased risk. These persons should receive targeted interventions including chronic disease management, precautions to reduce exposure, additional primary and booster vaccine doses, and effective pharmaceutical therapy as indicated to reduce risk for severe COVID-19 outcomes. Increasing COVID-19 vaccination coverage is a public health priority.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/prevention & control , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Aged , Critical Care/statistics & numerical data , Databases, Factual , Death , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Respiration, Artificial , Respiratory Insufficiency/complications , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , United States/epidemiology , Young Adult
9.
Resuscitation ; 170: 230-237, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1569021

ABSTRACT

RATIONALE: The impact of palliative care consultation on end-of-life care has not previously been evaluated in a multi-center study. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the impact of palliative care consultation on the incidence of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) performed and comfort care received at the end-of-life in hospitalized patients with COVID-19. METHODS: We used the Society of Critical Care Medicine's COVID-19 registry to extract clinical data on patients hospitalized with COVID-19 between March 31st, 2020 to March 17th, 2021 and died during their hospitalization. The proportion of patients who received palliative care consultation was assessed in patients who did and did not receive CPR (primary outcome) and comfort care (secondary outcome). Propensity matching was used to account for potential confounding variables. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: 3,227 patients were included in the analysis. There was no significant difference in the incidence of palliative care consultation between the CPR and no-CPR groups (19.9% vs. 19.4%, p = 0.8334). Patients who received comfort care at the end-of-life were significantly more likely to have received palliative care consultation (43.3% vs. 7.7%, p < 0.0001). After propensity matching for comfort care on demographic characteristics and comorbidities, this relationship was still significant (43.2% vs. 8.5%; p < 0.0001). CONCLUSION: Palliative care consultation was not associated with CPR performed at the end-of-life but was associated with increased incidence of comfort care being utilized. These results suggest that utilizing palliative care consultation at the end-of-life may better align the needs and values of patients with the care they receive.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Terminal Care , Death , Humans , Palliative Care , Referral and Consultation , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
10.
J Health Organ Manag ; 35(9): 368-377, 2021 Nov 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1541637

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: The impact of population ageing is significant, multifaceted and characterised by frailty and multi-morbidity. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated care pathways and policies promoting self-management and home-based care. One under-researched area is how patients and family caregivers manage the complexity of end-of-life therapeutic medicine regimens. In this position paper the authors bring attention to the significant strain that patients and family caregivers experience when navigating and negotiating this aspect of palliative and end-of-life care. DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH: Focussing on self-care and organisation of medicines in the United Kingdom (UK) context, the paper examines, builds on and extends the debate by considering the underlying policy assumptions and unintended consequences for individual patients and family care givers as they assume greater palliative and end-of-life roles and responsibilities. FINDINGS: Policy makers and healthcare professionals often lack awareness of the significant burden and emotional work associated with managing and administering often potent high-risk medicines (i.e. opioids) in the domiciliary setting. The recent "revolution" in professional roles associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, including remote consultations and expanding community-based care, means there are opportunities for commissioners to consider offering greater support. The prospect of enhancing the community pharmacist's medicine optimisation role to further support the wider multi-disciplinary team is considered. ORIGINALITY/VALUE: The paper takes a person-focused perspective and adopts a holistic view of medicine management. The authors argue for urgent review, reform and investment to enable and support terminally ill patients and family caregivers to more effectively manage medicines in the domiciliary setting. There are clear implications for pharmacists and these are discussed in the context of public awareness, inter-professional collaboration, organisational drivers, funding and regulation and remote care delivery.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Death , Health Policy , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Am J Public Health ; 111(S2): S82-S83, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526716
12.
Intern Med J ; 52(3): 386-395, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1522724

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted those in residential aged care facilities (RACF). This research was undertaken to explore and better understand the effects of the pandemic on the experience of next-of-kin and carers who encountered the death of a loved one who resided within a RACF during the pandemic. AIMS: To explore end-of-life experiences for residents who die in RACF and their next-of-kin/carers during the COVID-19 pandemic, to identify areas of concern and areas for improvement. METHODS: Prospective single-centre mixed methods research was undertaken involving telephone interview with next-of-kin or carers of residents who died within 30 days of being referred to Austin Health Residential InReach Service during the 'second wave' of COVID-19 in Melbourne, Australia, in 2020. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected. Qualitative description and aspects of grounded theory were used for analysing qualitative data. Thematic analysis of the interview transcripts used open and axial coding to identify initial themes and then to group these under major themes. RESULTS: Forty-one telephone interviews were analysed. Major themes identified included: COVID-19 pandemic, communication and technology, death and dying experience, bereavement and grief, and social supports and external systems. CONCLUSIONS: Findings identify the many COVID-19 pandemic-related challenges faced by participants and their dying loved one in RACF. Access to palliative care and bereavement support is crucial for dying residents and for grieving that has been made more difficult by the pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Aged , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Death , Humans , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
13.
BMJ Open ; 11(10): e047275, 2021 10 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504015

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Family caregivers play an essential role in end-of-life care but suffer considerable impact on their own health. A better understanding of main factors related to carers' health is important to inform interventions. The purpose of the study was to test for the first time the potential impact of a comprehensive set of observable variables on carer health during end-of-life caregiving within a population-based carer sample. DESIGN: National retrospective, cross-sectional, 4-month post-bereavement postal census survey of family carers of people who died from cancer. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Relatives who registered a death from cancer during a 2-week period in England were identified from death certificates by the Office of National Statistics; response rate was 1504/5271 (28.5%). OUTCOME MEASURES: Carers' mental health was measured through General Health Questionnaire (GHQ)-12; general health was measured through EuroQoL EQ-Visual Analogue Scale (EQ-5D VAS). METHODS: Survey questions to measure potential variables associated with carer health were based on past research and covered patients' symptoms and functioning; caregiving activities and hours; informal and formal help received; work hours, other caregiving, volunteering; changes to work, income and expenditure; sleep and relaxation; and demographic variables. Bivariate analyses and ordinary least square regression were performed to investigate these variables' relationship with outcomes. RESULTS: Patients' psychological symptoms and functioning, caregiving hours, female gender and self-sought formal help related to worse mental health. General practitioner and social care input and relaxation related to better mental health. Patients' psychological symptoms, caregiving hours and female gender were associated with worse general health, and older age, employment and relaxation were associated with better general health. CONCLUSIONS: Improvements in carers' health overall may be made by focusing on potential impacts of patients' psychological symptoms on carers, facilitating respite and relaxation, and paying particular attention to factors affecting female carers.


Subject(s)
Bereavement , Neoplasms , Aged , Caregivers , Cross-Sectional Studies , Death , Female , Humans , Retrospective Studies , Surveys and Questionnaires
14.
Prim Health Care Res Dev ; 22: e57, 2021 10 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1492990

ABSTRACT

AIM: To explore the extent to which national policy in end-of-life care (EOLC) in England influences and guides local practice, helping to ensure that care for older people at the EOL is of a consistently good quality. BACKGROUND: Whilst policy is recognised as an important component in determining the effectiveness of EOLC, there is scant literature which attempts to interrogate how this happens or to hypothesise the mechanisms linking policy to better outcomes. METHOD: This article reports on the second phase of a realist evaluation comprising three case studies of clinical commissioning groups, including 98 in-depth interviews with stakeholders, meeting observation and documentary analysis. FINDINGS: This study reveals the key contextual factors which need to be in place at micro, meso and macro levels if good quality EOLC for older people is to be achieved. The findings provide insight into rising local inequalities and reveal areas of dissonance between stakeholder priorities. Whilst patients privilege the importance of receiving care and compassion in familiar surroundings at EOL, there remains a clear tension between this and the medical drive to cure disease and extend life. The apparent devaluing of social care and subsequent lack of resource has impacted significantly on the way in which dying is experienced.Patient experience at EOL, shaped by the care received both formally and informally, is driven by a fragmented health and social care system. Whilst the importance of system integration appears to have been recognised, significant challenges remain in terms of shaping policy to adequately reflect this. This study highlights the priority attached by patients and their families to the social and relational aspect of death and dying and shines a light on the stark disparities between the health and social care systems which became even more evident at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Terminal Care , Aged , Death , Humans , Pandemics , Policy , SARS-CoV-2
15.
JAMA ; 326(14): 1373-1374, 2021 10 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1490617
18.
BMC Palliat Care ; 20(1): 161, 2021 Oct 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477412

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Cancer patients' end-of-life care may involve complex decision-making processes. Colombia has legislation regarding provision of and access to palliative care and is the only Latin American country with regulation regarding euthanasia. We describe medical end-of-life decision-making practices among cancer patients in three Colombian hospitals. METHODS: Cancer patients who were at the end-of-life and attended in participating hospitals were identified. When these patients deceased, their attending physician was invited to participate. Attending physicians of 261 cancer patients (out of 348 identified) accepted the invitation and answered a questionnaire regarding end-of-life decisions: a.) decisions regarding the withdrawal or withholding of potentially life-prolonging medical treatments, b.) intensifying measures to alleviate pain or other symptoms with hastening of death as a potential side effect, and c.) the administration, supply or prescription of drugs with an explicit intention to hasten death. For each question addressing the first two decision types, we asked if the decision was fully or partially made with the intention or consideration that it may hasten the patient's death. RESULTS: Decisions to withdraw potentially life-prolonging treatment were made for 112 (43%) patients, 16 of them (14%) with an intention to hasten death. For 198 patients (76%) there had been some decision to not initiate potentially life-prolonging treatment. Twenty-three percent of patients received palliative sedation, 97% of all patients received opioids. Six patients (2%) explicitly requested to actively hasten their death, for two of them their wish was fulfilled. In another six patients, medications were used with the explicit intention to hasten death without their explicit request. In 44% (n = 114) of all cases, physicians did not know if their patient had any advance care directives, 26% (n = 38) of physicians had spoken to the patient regarding the possibility of certain treatment decisions to hasten death where this applied. CONCLUSIONS: Decisions concerning the end of life were common for patients with cancer in three Colombian hospitals, including euthanasia and palliative sedation. Physicians and patients often fail to communicate about advance care directives and potentially life-shortening effects of treatment decisions. Specific end-of-life procedures, patients' wishes, and availability of palliative care should be further investigated.


Subject(s)
Decision Making , Neoplasms , Colombia , Death , Hospitals , Humans , Neoplasms/therapy , Surveys and Questionnaires
19.
Am J Respir Crit Care Med ; 205(1): 36-45, 2022 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476911

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Studies have suggested some patients with asthma are at risk of severe coronavirus disease (COVID-19), but they have had limited data on asthma phenotype and have not considered if risks are specific to COVID-19. Objectives: To determine the effect of asthma phenotype on three levels of COVID-19 outcomes. Compare hospitalization rates with influenza and pneumonia. Methods: Electronic medical records were used to identify patients with asthma and match them to the general population. Patient-level data were linked to Public Health England severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) test data, hospital, and mortality data. Asthma was phenotyped by medication, exacerbation history, and type 2 inflammation. The risk of each outcome, adjusted for major risk factors, was measured using Cox regression. Measurements and Main Results: A total of 434,348 patients with asthma and 748,327 matched patients were included. All patients with asthma had a significantly increased risk of a General Practice diagnosis of COVID-19. Asthma with regular inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) use (hazard ratio [HR], 1.27; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01-1.61), intermittent ICS plus add-on asthma medication use (HR, 2.00; 95% CI, 1.43-2.79), regular ICS plus add-on use (HR, 1.63; 95% CI, 1.37-1.94), or with frequent exacerbations (HR, 1.82; 95% CI, 1.34-2.47) was significantly associated with hospitalization. These phenotypes were significantly associated with influenza and pneumonia hospitalizations. Only patients with regular ICS plus add-on asthma therapy (HR, 1.70; 95% CI, 1.27-2.26) or frequent exacerbations (HR, 1.66; 95% CI, 1.03-2.68) had a significantly higher risk of ICU admission or death. Atopy and blood eosinophil count were not associated with severe COVID-19 outcomes. Conclusions: More severe asthma was associated with more severe COVID-19 outcomes, but type 2 inflammation was not. The risk of COVID-19 hospitalization appeared to be similar to the risk with influenza or pneumonia.


Subject(s)
Asthma/complications , COVID-19/complications , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Phenotype , SARS-CoV-2 , Administration, Inhalation , Adrenal Cortex Hormones/administration & dosage , Adult , Asthma/drug therapy , Critical Care/statistics & numerical data , Death , England/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Influenza, Human/complications , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Patient Acuity , Pneumonia/complications , Proportional Hazards Models
20.
Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry ; 30(10): 1483-1484, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1465872
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