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2.
Nutrients ; 15(10)2023 May 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20234869

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted children's lifestyles, including dietary behaviors. Of particular concern among these behaviors is the heightened prevalence of ultra-processed food (UPF) consumption, which has been linked to the development of obesity and related non-communicable diseases. The present study examines the changes in (1) UPF and (2) vegetable and/or fruit consumption among school-aged children in Greece and Sweden before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: The analyzed dataset consisted of main meal pictures (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) captured by 226 Greek students (94 before the pandemic and 132 during the pandemic) and 421 Swedish students (293 before and 128 during the pandemic), aged 9-18, who voluntarily reported their meals using a mobile application. The meal pictures were collected over four-month periods over two consecutive years; namely, between the 20th of August and the 20th of December in 2019 (before the COVID-19 outbreak) and the same period in 2020 (during the COVID-19 outbreak). The collected pictures were annotated manually by a trained nutritionist. A chi-square test was performed to evaluate the differences in proportions before versus during the pandemic. RESULTS: In total, 10,770 pictures were collected, including 6474 pictures from before the pandemic and 4296 pictures collected during the pandemic. Out of those, 86 pictures were excluded due to poor image quality, and 10,684 pictures were included in the final analyses (4267 pictures from Greece and 6417 pictures from Sweden). The proportion of UPF significantly decreased during vs. before the pandemic in both populations (50% vs. 46%, p = 0.010 in Greece, and 71% vs. 66%, p < 0.001 in Sweden), while the proportion of vegetables and/or fruits significantly increased in both cases (28% vs. 35%, p < 0.001 in Greece, and 38% vs. 42%, p = 0.019 in Sweden). There was a proportional increase in meal pictures containing UPF among boys in both countries. In Greece, both genders showed an increase in vegetables and/or fruits, whereas, in Sweden, the increase in fruit and/or vegetable consumption was solely observed among boys. CONCLUSIONS: The proportion of UPF in the Greek and Swedish students' main meals decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic vs. before the pandemic, while the proportion of main meals with vegetables and/or fruits increased.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Food Services , Child , Humans , Male , Female , Vegetables , Fruit , Greece/epidemiology , Pandemics , Sweden/epidemiology , Food, Processed , COVID-19/epidemiology , Students , Diet , Feeding Behavior
3.
Int J Drug Policy ; 117: 104073, 2023 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2326552

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Multiple HIV outbreaks have been recorded among people who inject drugs (PWID) since 2010. During an intervention for PWID in 2019-2021 in Thessaloniki, Greece, an increasing number of HIV cases was documented. Here, we provide an analysis of this new outbreak. METHODS: ALEXANDROS was a community-based program and participation included interviewing, rapid HIV/HCV tests, counselling and linkage to care. PWID were recruited through Respondent-Driven Sampling (RDS) in five sampling rounds. Crude and RDS-weighted HIV prevalence estimates were obtained. HIV incidence was estimated from data on 380 initially seronegative PWID with at least two tests. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards model was used to assess risk factors for HIV seroconversion. RESULTS: In total, 1,101 PWID were recruited. At first participation, 53.7% were current PWID, 20.1% homeless, 20.3% on opioid substitution treatment and 4.8% had received syringes in the past 12 months. HIV prevalence (95% CI) was 7.0% (5.6-8.7%) and an increasing trend was observed over 2019-2021 (p = 0.002). Two-thirds of the cases (67.5%) were new diagnoses. HIV incidence was 7.0 new infections/100 person-years (95% CI:4.8-10.2). Homelessness in the past 12 months (HR:2.68; 95% CI:1.24-5.81) and receptive syringe sharing (HR:3.86; 95% CI:1.75-8.51) were independently associated with increased risk of seroconversion. By the end of the program, 67.3% of the newly diagnosed cases initiated antiretroviral treatment. CONCLUSIONS: A new HIV outbreak among PWID was documented in Greece during the COVID-19 pandemic with homelessness and syringe sharing being associated with increased risk of HIV acquisition. Peer-driven programs targeting the population of high-risk underserved PWID can be used to early identify emerging outbreaks and to improve linkage to HIV care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Users , HIV Infections , HIV Seropositivity , Substance Abuse, Intravenous , Humans , HIV Infections/drug therapy , Substance Abuse, Intravenous/complications , Substance Abuse, Intravenous/epidemiology , Greece/epidemiology , Pandemics , Risk-Taking , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/complications , HIV Seropositivity/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Prevalence
4.
J Med Microbiol ; 72(5)2023 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2324001

ABSTRACT

Introduction. C. difficile infection (CDI) represents an important global threat. In the COVID-19 era, the multifactorial nature of CDI has emerged.Hypothesis - Aim. The aim was to assess the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the incidence of CDI in a Greek hospital.Methodology. A retrospective study was performed throughout a 51 month period (January 2018 to March 2022), divided into two periods: pre-pandemic (January 2018 to February 2020) and COVID-19 pandemic (March 2020 to March 2022). The effects of the pandemic compared to the pre-pandemic period on the incidence of CDI [expressed as infections per 10 000 bed days (IBD)] were studied using interrupted time-series analysis.Results. Throughout the study, there was an increase in the monthly CDI incidence from 0.00 to 11.77 IBD (P<0.001). Interrupted time-series disclosed an increase in CDI incidence during the pre-pandemic period from 0.00 to 3.36 IBD (P<0.001). During the COVID-19 pandemic period the linear trend for monthly CDI rose from 2.65 to 13.93 IBD (P<0.001). The increase rate was higher during the COVID-19 pandemic period (r2 = +0.47) compared to the pre-pandemic period (r1 = +0.16).Conclusion. A significant increase of CDI incidence was observed, with the rate of the rise being more intense during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Clostridioides difficile , Clostridium Infections , Cross Infection , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , Tertiary Care Centers , Incidence , Greece/epidemiology , Clostridium Infections/epidemiology , Cross Infection/epidemiology
5.
In Vivo ; 37(3): 1312-1317, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2302330

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND/AIM: Immunomodulatory therapy with Tocilizumab (TCZ), a monoclonal antibody against interleukin-6 receptor-alpha, has been endorsed by the World Health Organization and other major regulatory bodies, as part of the standard-of-care therapy for severe or critical COVID-19 cases despite discordant trial outcomes. The aim of the present study was to report the experience of our center regarding TCZ routine use in severely ill COVID-19 patients who were hospitalized during the third pandemic wave in Greece. PATIENTS AND METHODS: From March 2021 to December 2021, we retrospectively analyzed COVID-19 patients with radiological findings of pneumonia and signs of rapid respiratory deterioration that were treated with TCZ. The primary outcome included the risk of intubation or/and death in TCZ-treated patients compared to matched controls. RESULTS: TCZ administration was neither predictive of intubation and/or death [OR=17.5 (95% CI=0.47-652.2; p=0.12)] or associated with fewer events (p=0.92) in multivariate analysis. CONCLUSION: Our single-center real-life experience is in line with recently published research, revealing no benefit from TCZ routine use in severely or critically ill patients with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Retrospective Studies , Pandemics , Greece/epidemiology , COVID-19 Drug Treatment
6.
J Diet Suppl ; 20(2): 199-217, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2270782

ABSTRACT

The elderly constitute a vulnerable group for increased anxiety and poor diet during the COVID-19 pandemic. There is limited research on the levels of COVID-19-related anxiety and dietary habits including dietary supplementation practices among the elderly and very elderly in Greece. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in 364 non-institutionalized elderly (65-74 y) and very elderly (≥75 y) living in northern Greece, with the aim to investigate the use of dietary supplements and their association with other factors, particularly the COVID-19-related anxiety. Levels of anxiety were assessed with the use of the Coronavirus Anxiety Scale (CAS-5). The percentage of dietary supplement users was 62.6%. The most popular dietary supplements used were vitamin D followed by vitamin C and multivitamin and mineral supplements. Multivariate analysis showed that the very elderly and overweight individuals were less likely to consume vitamin D supplements. Approximately a third of the participants (33.8%) exhibited signs of COVID-19-related anxiety but only 8% showed dysfunctional levels of anxiety. Regression analysis indicated that women, former smokers, and people exhibiting any sign of COVID-19 anxiety were approximately two times more likely to consume dietary supplements of any kind (Gender: OR 2.34, 95% CI 1.30-4.19; Smoking: OR 2.15, 95% CI: 1.08-4.26; COVID-19 anxiety: OR 2.16, 95 % CI: 1.20-3.91). Our results provide useful insights into the current practices of dietary supplement use in this population group and could be used by dietetic and medical associations as well as public authorities in the formulation of targeted, safe, and effective interventions for the protection of public health.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Humans , Female , Aged , Cross-Sectional Studies , Greece/epidemiology , Dietary Supplements , Vitamins , Vitamin D , Anxiety
7.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(6)2023 03 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2267111

ABSTRACT

The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to significant progress in the field of wastewater-based surveillance (WBS) of respiratory pathogens and highlighted its potential for a wider application in public health surveillance. This study aimed to evaluate whether monitoring of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in wastewater can provide a comprehensive picture of disease transmission at the community level. The study was conducted in Larissa (Central Greece) between October 2022 and January 2023. Forty-six wastewater samples were collected from the inlet of the wastewater treatment plant of Larissa and analyzed with a real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) based method. RSV and SARS-CoV-2 wastewater viral loads (genome copies/100,000 inhabitants) were analyzed against sentinel surveillance data on influenza-like illness (ILI) to identify potential associations. Univariate linear regression analysis revealed that RSV wastewater viral load (lagged by one week) and ILI notification rates in children up to 14 years old were strongly associated (std. Beta: 0.73 (95% CI: 0.31-1.14), p = 0.002, R2 = 0.308). A weaker association was found between SARS-CoV-2 viral load and ILI rates in the 15+ age group (std. Beta: 0.56 (95% CI: 0.06-1.05), p = 0.032, R2 = 0.527). The results support the incorporation of RSV monitoring into existing wastewater-based surveillance systems.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Influenza, Human , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections , Sexually Transmitted Diseases , Virus Diseases , Humans , Child , Respiratory Syncytial Viruses/genetics , Wastewater , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/epidemiology , Greece/epidemiology , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Virus Diseases/epidemiology , Sexually Transmitted Diseases/epidemiology
8.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(6)2023 03 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2265533

ABSTRACT

The present study examined the relationship between self-compassion (SC) and emotional well-being in college students during the COVID-19 pandemic. The theoretical framework for the study was that SC, defined as an understanding and caring response to one's suffering and limitations, may serve as a protective factor against negative mental health outcomes. A sample of college students (N = 101) completed self-report measures of SC, depression, anxiety, stress, life satisfaction and subjective happiness. Data were analysed using regression analysis to examine the prediction of emotional well-being variables by SC and moderation analysis to examine the moderating effect of SC on the relationships between emotional well-being variables. The study's results confirmed the hypothesis that SC would predict emotional well-being. SC significantly predicted all variables examined, including depression, anxiety, stress, life satisfaction (LS) and subjective happiness (SH). However, SC did not moderate the relationships between these variables. Isolation significantly moderated the relationship between SH and depression among college students. These findings support the idea that SC may serve as a protective factor against negative mental health outcomes and suggest that interventions aimed at increasing SC may improve mental health and overall well-being in college students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Further research is needed to understand these relationships' mechanisms and the factors that may influence them.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , Greece , Pandemics , Self-Compassion , Students
9.
Int J Paediatr Dent ; 33(3): 246-253, 2023 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2249637

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Limited evidence regarding the post-COVID-19 dental status of paediatric patients is available, with most studies assessing only children's oral health habits. AIM: To evaluate the effect of the COVID-19 lockdown on the oral health of paediatric dental patients in Greece. DESIGN: This was a retrospective cohort study that included a questionnaire on children's oral health behavior and a clinical examination assessing dental caries and dental treatment needs using the International Caries Detection and Assessment System criteria, dmft/DMFT, and Treatment Need Index. The Wilcoxon signed-rank test was used for a statistical comparison between questionnaire and clinical data before, during, and after the lockdown. RESULTS: A total of 102 children with a median age of 9 years were recruited from the current cohort of patients that had their last dental examination 6 months prior to the lockdown. Results from the questionnaire showed decreased brushing frequency with increased eating frequency and sugar consumption during the lockdown period (p < .001). Moreover, 16.5% had to visit the dentist for urgent care during the lockdown, 13.6% experienced dental pain, and 51.5% did not experience any dental emergencies. Clinical examination, after the lockdown, recorded significantly increased mean dmft/DMFT scores by 0.63 units in the primary dentition (p = .01) and 0.52 units in the permanent teeth (p = .002). Significantly higher treatment needs, with more carious lesions requiring extensive treatment after the lockdown, were recorded (p < .001). CONCLUSION: The COVID-19 lockdown negatively affected children's oral health behavior: caries prevalence increased and more complex dental treatments were required.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Dental Caries , Child , Humans , Oral Health , Dental Caries/epidemiology , Greece/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control , Prevalence , DMF Index
10.
Eur J Public Health ; 33(2): 228-234, 2023 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2240032

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The Covid-19 pandemic is an economic and a health crisis. Households reduced consumption expenditures as large-scale physical distancing measures, lower disposable incomes and fear of infection when engaging in many types of economic activity took hold. This, in turn, reduced domestic tax revenues at a time when governments were facing increased financial pressures to strengthen and sustain welfare states. METHODS: We developed a simulation model, the Covid-19 Taxination Simulator, to estimate potential economic gains and tax revenues attributable to vaccine rollouts. We apply the model to 12 European Union countries which had low vaccination rates at the beginning of 2022. RESULTS: The highest growth in aggregate personal consumption expenditure attributable to Covid-19 vaccines administered as of January 2022 is in Greece (10.8%), Slovenia (8.6%) and Czechia (8.6%), while the lowest is in Bulgaria (2.2%) and Slovakia (2.1%). If countries had vaccinated 85% of their adult population, the largest gains in consumption tax revenues would be expected in Romania (830 million Euros) and Poland (738 million Euros). Consumption tax revenues generated by meeting the 85% of the adult population target would, on their own, be large enough to fully cover the costs of expanding the vaccine rollout itself in Estonia, Latvia, Slovenia, Croatia, Czechia, Hungary and Greece. CONCLUSION: Covid-19 vaccination rollouts not only save lives and relieve pressures on health systems, they also support economic growth and generate additional tax revenues. These revenues can partially offset the costs of vaccines programmes themselves.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Adult , Humans , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Greece , Vaccination
11.
Viruses ; 15(1)2022 Dec 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2239097

ABSTRACT

The emergence of the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) presented an unprecedented public health threat, being the cause of one of the most devastating pandemics in history [...].


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Pandemics , Greece/epidemiology
12.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(3)2023 01 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2245478

ABSTRACT

The global outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has spread worldwide, affecting almost all countries and territories. COVID-19 continues to impact various spheres of our life, such as the economy, industries, global market, agriculture, human health, health care, and many others. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of the COVID-lockdowns on people's mental health in Greece. A descriptive, cross-sectional study was conducted in several urban, semi-urban and rural areas. The survey of 252 Greek people was conducted in spring 2022, and 46.8% of them were female and the other 53.2% were male. Ages were between 19 and 60 years old. Some of the main findings were that most of the participants feel their mental health got worse than before (about 80%), participants with kids were more affected than those who did not have any kids because they had bigger responsibilities and the pandemic might have caused them a lot of problems to deal with. The higher the income, the less they are affected, and people whose jobs did not change dramatically were also less likely to not be much mentally affected. Moreover, the percentage of smokers whose mental health became worse was greater than that among those who did not smoke. The same happened with those who consumed alcohol. Finally, we used the GBM algorithm to find three important predictors and we applied k-means to have a clear picture of the different clusters and how a number of participants are connected according to their answers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Male , Female , Young Adult , Adult , Middle Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/psychology , Mental Health , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Cross-Sectional Studies , Greece/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Income
13.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(1)2022 12 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2244356

ABSTRACT

Monitoring behavioral and cultural insights during the pandemic is a useful tool to identify factors related to COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and confront the pandemic's vast impact. Data were collected using a questionnaire designed according to the "survey tool and guidance" provided by the World Health Organization (WHO). Surveys were conducted by a market research company for five consecutive months, with a sample of 1000 individuals recruited per survey. Vaccination acceptance increased from 55.2% to 67.2%, while the percentage of undecisive individuals decreased from 16.3% to 10.6%. The proportion of vaccine resistant participants remained relatively steady (25−30%). Knowledge about the pandemic and compliance with preventive measures was high (>90%). Factors associated with vaccination included: Increased age, male gender, influenza vaccination, following authorities' recommendations, being informed by HCWs or formal information sources, care for others, concern about the country's economic recession and health system overload. Pandemic fatigue was reflected across the surveys, indicated by a decrease in the intention to self-isolate and remain at home when ill. Despite the decrease of undecisive individuals, a firm core of vaccine resistant individuals may be responsible for the relatively lower vaccine coverage compared to northern EU countries. Study results could be useful for developing approaches tailored to a reluctant population.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Humans , Male , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Pandemics/prevention & control , Greece/epidemiology , Vaccination
14.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(1)2022 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2242307

ABSTRACT

Emergency remote teaching replaced the in-person education in academic institutions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Students with different personality traits experienced this abrupt change to distance learning in different ways. Thus, this research aims to examine the interplay between several facets of the students' experience of emergency remote teaching, such as concerns about, tiredness with, and lack of communication during the first Greek lockdown, and their self-image through their core self-evaluations. The study sample consisted of 341 undergraduate students derived from 13 Greek universities, that completed a self-report questionnaire concerning students' experiences with distance education, as well as the Core Self-Evaluation Scale measuring self-image components. A cross-section design was used and multiple regression and mediation analyses were applied. The results showed that self-image has an effect on students' feeling of tiredness with distance learning, while female students demonstrated higher tiredness with distance learning and lack of communication. Moreover, except for gender and disability, all other variables along with self-image significantly predicted perspectives on distance learning. On the other hand, only gender, concerns about, and lack of communication significantly predicted students' e-attendance of theoretical courses. In this transformative era, it is a challenge for universities to create effective online courses concerning students' self-image. Finally, limitations and future directions are discussed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Female , Humans , Greece/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Students , Fatigue
15.
Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis ; 94: 101962, 2023 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2242265

ABSTRACT

Feline coronavirus (FCoV) is a highly contagious and ubiquitous virus of domestic cats and wild felids. Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is a fatal, systemic disease caused by FCoV infection when spontaneous mutations of the viral genome take place. The aims of this study were primarily to determine the prevalence of seropositivity for FCoV in different populations of cats in Greece and assess risk factors for seropositivity. A total of 453 cats were prospectively enrolled in the study. A commercially available IFAT kit was used for the detection of FCoV IgG antibodies in serum. Overall, 55 (12.1 %) of the 453 cats were seropositive for FCoV. Based on multivariable analysis, factors associated with FCoV-seropositivity included cats adopted as strays and contact with other cats. This is the first extensive study on the epidemiology of FCoV in cats from Greece and one of the largest worldwide. Feline coronavirus infection is relatively common in Greece. Therefore, it is necessary to establish optimal strategies for the prevention of FCoV infection, considering the high-risk groups of cats identified in this study.


Subject(s)
Cat Diseases , Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus, Feline , Feline Infectious Peritonitis , Animals , Cats , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Greece , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Feline Infectious Peritonitis/diagnosis , Coronavirus, Feline/genetics , Risk Factors
16.
PLoS One ; 18(2): e0278021, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2231364

ABSTRACT

Supervision over the suppliers of packaging as well as suppliers of raw materials for packaging production is important to ensure the quality and safety of meat products. The aim of this study was to verify the remote evaluation procedure of quality, processing and economic criteria in qualification of raw materials suppliers to the meat packaging foil producer during the Covid-19 pandemic. The evaluation was done remotely in terms of meeting some of the requirements of the quality management system (QMS) in conditions where regular audit could not be carried out. The survey was conducted in one of the biggest packaging foil producers in Greece via its supplier evaluation. The evaluation consisted of: 1/ economic criteria and 2/ quality and processing criteria. The highest and the lowest rated economic criteria were procedural compliance and price of raw materials. Among the quality and processing criteria, the highest score was given to warranties and claims policies and material quality, and the lowest one to lead time. The highest ratings obtained suppliers of raw materials directly involved in production, suppliers from Greece, the USA and Denmark, as well as suppliers to the R&D department. The results of the study showed that the quality of the raw materials directly used in the production of packaging foil was adequate. Therefore, their use ensure production of packaging foil and finally packaged meat products of adequate quality and safety. The presented procedure occurred to be useful for remote evaluation of quality, processing and economic criteria in qualification of suppliers during the Covid-19 pandemic. It may inspire other producers of food packaging materials to continuing supervision over their suppliers while regular methods of control are limited.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Meat Products , Humans , Greece , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Meat , Food Packaging/methods
17.
J Relig Health ; 62(2): 1373-1378, 2023 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2231291

ABSTRACT

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic vaccines were highly anticipated in order to help contain the spread of the virus and mitigate its impact. However, when the vaccination program began, some minorities were reluctant to get vaccinated for numerous reasons. Specifically, at that time in Greece many priests were opposed to getting vaccinated and proceeded to discourage their flock, in stark contrast to the decisions of Greek Orthodox religious leaders who endorsed the vaccination program. It is clear that the COVID-19 pandemic doesn't solely affect the health system but also other parts of society such as politics, the economy and, last but not least, religion and worship. In the current article, we aim to present the notions and attitudes that led many Greek Orthodox Christians to be hesitant about getting vaccinated or even to become a part of the movement actively against vaccination that has been growing during this pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccination Hesitancy , Humans , Greece , Pandemics , Religion and Science , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Vaccination
18.
Medicina (Kaunas) ; 59(1)2022 Dec 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2229438

ABSTRACT

Background and Objectives: The Greek Society of Migraine and Headache Patients conducted, in 2020, its second online survey, titled "Migraine in Greece-2020", after publication of the first similar online survey conducted in 2018. To compare the current findings with the corresponding data obtained in 2018, we herein release the second part of results obtained from the 2020 survey on the efficacy of preventive and symptomatic anti-migraine medications and the patients' reported satisfaction with these treatments. Materials and Methods: We surveyed 2105 migraine patients from all over Greece with the use of a 151-questions specific migraine-focused questionnaire in Greek language, which was distributed through the online research software "SurveyMonkey". Results: Triptans were mostly used with efficacy for the symptomatic relief of migraine attacks. About 2 of 3 surveyed patients had received various prophylactic oral medications and the majority of them discontinued these prophylactic medications as a result of inefficacy/safety issues. BoNTA was reported to be effective only when administration was commenced by a trained neurologist/headache specialist, while our current findings are generally comparable to those obtained in our 2018 pre-COVID-19 survey and the pandemic has not imposed any significant attitudes on migraine therapies and corresponding patients' satisfaction. Conclusion: Although a market change is anticipated with the evolving widespread use of anti-CGRPs monoclonal antibodies or gepants in the symptomatic and prophylactic treatment of migraine, it is of great interest to review published results of larger longitudinal population-based studies to further ascertain the satisfaction of patients to migraine therapies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Migraine Disorders , Humans , Patient Satisfaction , Greece , Migraine Disorders/drug therapy , Migraine Disorders/prevention & control , Surveys and Questionnaires , Headache , Personal Satisfaction , Internet
19.
PLoS One ; 18(2): e0278758, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2224464

ABSTRACT

The emergency presented through the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the need to adopt remote, technology-driven solutions and make healthcare services more resilient. To do so, we need technological applications (i.e., telemedicine) that are designed and tailored to the end-users (i.e., chronic patients) needs and the type of healthcare service they get (i.e., cancer care). The requirements above are especially relevant to Greece, being a country with numerous sparsely populated regions (e.g., islands, regions at the borders) and a deteriorating access to healthcare for all citizens. Trying to address such diverse problems and needs, there have been multiple, different telemedicine and telecare projects in Greece in the past years. To support the future design and implementation of such endeavours, in this study we translated a questionnaire measuring the acceptance of telemedicine by patients and adapted it to the Greek context. We continued by running a small-scale pilot with 73 Greek women with breast cancer to assess the adapted instrument for its reliability and construct validity. The created questionnaire had good overall and internal reliability scores for most sub-scales. Factor analysis did not identify the same number of latent dimensions as the original theoretical model. Reverse wording items needing to be recoded were identified, and items that could be omitted in future versions of the questionnaire. Increasing the sample size for the purposes of a longitudinal study, the construct, convergent, and discriminant validity are elements to be further examined in future studies. It is envisaged that the creation of this questionnaire will support the adoption of telemedicine by Greek healthcare services into more routine areas of patient care provision.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Neoplasms , Telemedicine , Humans , Female , Greece , Reproducibility of Results , Longitudinal Studies , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Surveys and Questionnaires , Psychometrics
20.
Vaccine ; 41(14): 2343-2348, 2023 03 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2221470

ABSTRACT

AIM: We estimated vaccine effectiveness (VE) of full (booster) vaccination against severe outcomes in hospitalized COVID-19 patients during the Delta and Omicron waves. METHODS: The study extended from November 15, 2021 to April 17, 2022. Full vaccination was defined as a primary vaccination plus a booster ≥ 6 months later. RESULTS: We studied 1138 patients (mean age: 66.6 years), of whom 826 (72.6 %) had ≥ 1 comorbidity. Of the 1138 patients, 75 (6.6 %) were admitted to intensive care unit (ICU), 64 (5.6 %) received mechanical ventilation, and 172 (15.1 %) died. There were 386 (33.9 %) fully vaccinated, 172 (15.1 %) partially vaccinated, and 580 (51 %) unvaccinated patients. Unvaccinated patients were absent from work for longer periods compared to partially or fully vaccinated patients (mean absence of 20.1 days versus 12.3 and 17.3 days, respectively; p-value = 0.03). Compared to unvaccinated patients, fully vaccinated patients were less likely to be admitted to ICU [adjusted relative risk (ARR: 0.49; 95 % CI: 0.29-0.84)], mechanically ventilated (ARR: 0.43; 95 % CI: 0.23-0.80), and die (ARR: 0.57; 95 % CI: 0.42-0.78), while they were hospitalized for significantly shorter periods (ARR: 0.79; 95 % CI: 0.70-0.89). The adjusted full VE was 48.8 % (95 % CI: 42.7 %-54.9 %) against ICU admission, 55.4 % (95 % CI: 52.0 %-56.2 %) against mechanical ventilation, and 22.6 % (95 % CI: 7.4 %-34.8 %) against death. For patients with ≥ 3 comorbidities, VE was 56.2 % (95 % CI: 43.9 %-67.1 %) against ICU admission, 60.2 % (95 % CI: 53.7 %-65.4 %) against mechanical ventilation, and 43.9 % (95 % CI: 19.9 %-59.7 %) against death. CONCLUSIONS: Full (booster) COVID-19 vaccination conferred protection against severe outcomes, prolonged hospitalization, and prolonged work absenteeism.


Subject(s)
Absenteeism , COVID-19 , Humans , Aged , Greece/epidemiology , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , COVID-19/prevention & control , Vaccination
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