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2.
Glob Health Res Policy ; 6(1): 36, 2021 09 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1440961

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The highly contagious nature of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) places physicians in South Asia at high risk of contracting the infection. Accordingly, we conducted this study to provide an updated account of physician deaths in South Asia during the COVID-19 pandemic and to analyze and compare the different characteristics associated with physician mortality amongst the countries of the region. METHODS: We performed a cross-sectional study by using published news reports on the websites of news agencies from 9 selected countries in South Asia. Our study included only those physicians and doctors who died after contracting COVID-19 from their respective workplaces. All available data about the country of origin, type of, sex, age, medical or surgical specialty, and date of death were included. RESULTS: The total number of physician deaths reported due to COVID-19 in our study was 170, with half (87/170, 51%) of the deaths reported from Iran. Male physician deaths were reported to be 145 (145/170 = 85%). Internal Medicine (58.43%) was the most severely affected sub-specialty. The highest physician mortality rate in the general population recorded in Afghanistan (27/1000 deaths). General physicians from India [OR = 11.00(95% CI = 1.06-114.08), p = 0.045] and public sector medical practitioners from Pakistan [aOR = 4.52 (95% CI = 1.18-17.33), p = 0.028] were showing significant mortality when compared with other regions in multivariate logistic regression. CONCLUSION: An increased number of physician deaths, owing to COVID-19, has been shown in South Asia. This could be due to decreased personal protective equipment and the poor health care management systems of the countries in the region to combat the pandemic. Future studies should provide detailed information of characteristics associated with physician mortalities along with the main complications arising due to the virus.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , Mortality , Occupational Diseases/mortality , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Health/statistics & numerical data , Physicians/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Afghanistan/epidemiology , Aged , Bangladesh/epidemiology , Bhutan/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Global Health/statistics & numerical data , Humans , India/epidemiology , Indian Ocean Islands/epidemiology , Iran/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Nepal/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/virology , Pakistan/epidemiology , Sri Lanka/epidemiology
3.
Am J Ind Med ; 64(11): 941-951, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1408312

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: App-based drivers face work disruptions and infection risk during a pandemic due to the nature of their work, interactions with the public, and lack of workplace protections. Limited occupational health research has focused on their experiences. METHODS: We surveyed 100 app-based drivers in Seattle, WA to assess risk perceptions, supports, and controls received from the company that employs them, sources of trust, stress, job satisfaction, COVID-19 infection status, and how the pandemic had changed their work hours. Data were summarized descriptively and with simple regression models. We complemented this with qualitative interviews to better understand controls and policies enacted during COVID-19, and barriers and facilitators to their implementation. RESULTS: Drivers expressed very high levels of concern for exposure and infection (86%-97% were "very concerned" for all scenarios). Only 31% of drivers reported receiving an appropriate mask from the company for which they drive. Stress (assessed via PSS-4) was significantly higher in drivers who reported having had COVID-19, and also significantly higher in respondents with lower reported job satisfaction. Informants frequently identified supports such as unemployment benefits and peer outreach among the driver community as ways to ensure that drivers could access available benefits during COVID-19. CONCLUSIONS: App-based drivers received few protections from the company that employed them, and had high fear of exposure and infection at work. There is increased need for health-supportive policies and protections for app-based drivers. The most effective occupational and public health regulations would cover employees who may not have a traditional employer-employee relationship.


Subject(s)
Automobile Driving/psychology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Safety Management/organization & administration , Workplace/psychology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Mobile Applications , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Health , Organizational Culture , Perception , SARS-CoV-2 , Transportation , Washington , Workplace/organization & administration , Young Adult
4.
J Occup Health ; 63(1): e12273, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1406069

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: It is unclear how many workplace COVID-19 preventive measures were maintained during repeated outbreaks. The aim of this study was to investigate a longitudinal change of implementation of workplace preventive measures responding to COVID-19 in Japan. METHODS: An online longitudinal study was conducted using a cohort of full-time employees in Japan, starting in March 2020 (T1), with follow-up surveys in May (T2), August (T3), and November (T4) 2020. A repeated measures analysis of variance was performed to compare the difference among the four surveys in the mean number of 23 predetermined items of the measures implemented. RESULTS: The final sample comprised 800 employees. The mean number of the implemented measures increased from T1 to T2, but did not change from T2 to T3, then decreased from T3 to T4. The number of workplace preventive measures significantly increased from T1 to T2 for 21 items (P < .001), and significantly decreased from T3 to T4 for 14 items (P < .001 to P = .005). CONCLUSIONS: While the preventive measures responding to COVID-19 in the workplace were well-implemented during the earlier phase of the outbreak, they seem to have been relaxed after a huge outbreak (T3 to T4: August to November 2020). Workplaces should be encouraged to continue the preventive measures over repeated outbreaks.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/statistics & numerical data , Health Plan Implementation/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Workplace/statistics & numerical data , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Disease Outbreaks , Employment/statistics & numerical data , Female , Follow-Up Studies , Humans , Japan , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Health/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
6.
Infect Dis Now ; 51(5): 410-417, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1349451

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 mainly infects the respiratory tract, and presents significantly higher active replication in the upper airways. To remain viable and infectious, the SARS-CoV-2 virion must be complete and integral, which is not easily demonstrated in the environment by positive reverse transcriptase PCR results. Real-life conditions in healthcare settings may be conducive to SARS-CoV-2 RNA dissemination in the environment but without evidence of its viability and infectiveness in air. Theoretically, SARS-CoV-2 shedding and dissemination nonetheless appears to be air-mediated, and a distinction between "air" and "droplet" transmission is too schematic to reflect the reality of the respiratory particles emitted by patients, between which a continuum exists. Airborne transmission is influenced by numerous environmental conditions that are not transposable between different viral agents and situations in healthcare settings or in the community. Even though international guidelines on "droplet" versus "air" precautions and personal protective equipment (surgical versus respirator masks) are under discussion, the existing literature underscores the effectiveness of "droplet" precautions as a means of protecting healthcare workers. Differentiation in guidelines between healthcare venues, community settings and, more generally, confined environments is of paramount importance, especially insofar as it underlines the abiding pandemic-related need for systematic mask wearing by the general population.


Subject(s)
Air Microbiology , COVID-19/transmission , Health Personnel , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans
9.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 27(9): 1336-1344, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1233398

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Protecting healthcare workers (HCWs) from coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) is critical to preserve the functioning of healthcare systems. We therefore assessed seroprevalence and identified risk factors for severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) seropositivity in this population. METHODS: Between 22 June 22 and 15 August 2020, HCWs from institutions in northern/eastern Switzerland were screened for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. We recorded baseline characteristics, non-occupational and occupational risk factors. We used pairwise tests of associations and multivariable logistic regression to identify factors associated with seropositivity. RESULTS: Among 4664 HCWs from 23 healthcare facilities, 139 (3%) were seropositive. Non-occupational exposures independently associated with seropositivity were contact with a COVID-19-positive household (adjusted OR 59, 95% CI 33-106), stay in a COVID-19 hotspot (aOR 2.3, 95% CI 1.2-4.2) and male sex (aOR 1.9, 95% CI 1.1-3.1). Blood group 0 vs. non-0 (aOR 0.5, 95% CI 0.3-0.8), active smoking (aOR 0.4, 95% CI 0.2-0.7), living with children <12 years (aOR 0.3, 95% CI 0.2-0.6) and being a physician (aOR 0.2, 95% CI 0.1-0.5) were associated with decreased risk. Other occupational risk factors were close contact to COVID-19 patients (aOR 2.7, 95% CI 1.4-5.4), exposure to COVID-19-positive co-workers (aOR 1.9, 95% CI 1.1-2.9), poor knowledge of standard hygiene precautions (aOR 1.9, 95% CI 1.2-2.9) and frequent visits to the hospital canteen (aOR 2.3, 95% CI 1.4-3.8). DISCUSSION: Living with COVID-19-positive households showed the strongest association with SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity. We identified several potentially modifiable work-related risk factors, which might allow mitigation of the COVID-19 risk among HCWs. The lower risk among those living with children, even after correction for multiple confounders, is remarkable and merits further study.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , COVID-19/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/immunology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Health Personnel , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Multivariate Analysis , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/immunology , Risk Factors , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Sex Characteristics , Socioeconomic Factors , Switzerland/epidemiology , Young Adult
10.
Am J Ind Med ; 64(7): 551-566, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1231845

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: This article reports the results of a rapid scoping review of the literature on COVID-19 transmission risk to workers in essential sectors such as retail, health care, manufacturing, and agriculture, and more particularly the experiences of workers in precarious employment and social situations. METHODS: Following scoping review methods, we included 30 studies that varied in terms of methodology and theoretical approaches. The search included peer-reviewed articles and grey literature published between March and September 2020. RESULTS: Based on the studies reviewed, we found that COVID-19 infection and death rates increased not only with age and comorbidities, but also with discrimination and structural inequities based on racism and sexism. Racial and ethnic minority workers, including migrant workers, are concentrated in high-risk occupations and this concentration is correlated to lower socioeconomic conditions. The COVID-19 pandemic appears in the occupational health and safety spotlight as an exacerbator of already existing socioeconomic inequalities and social inequalities in health, especially in light of the intersection of issues related to racism, ethnic minority status, and sexism. CONCLUSIONS: This review provides early evidence about the limitations of institutions' responses to the pandemic, and their capacity to provide a safe and decent working environment for all workers, regardless of their employment status or the social protections they may enjoy under normal circumstances. It is also important to think about these issues in the postpandemic context, when conditions of precariousness and vulnerability persist and possibly worsen.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Health/statistics & numerical data , Occupations/statistics & numerical data , Public Health/statistics & numerical data , Adult , COVID-19/transmission , Disease Transmission, Infectious/statistics & numerical data , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Int J Infect Dis ; 105: 621-625, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1131386

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Mortuary and cemetery workers may be exposed to the bodies of people with SARS-CoV-2 infection; however, prevalence of infection among these groups is unknown. METHODS: Nasopharyngeal swabs (NPS) for RT-PCR and serologic testing for SARS-CoV-2 were performed on mortuary and cemetery workers in Qatar. Data on specific job duties, living conditions, contact history, and clinical course were gathered. Environmental sampling was carried out to explore any association with infection. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine the factors associated with infection. RESULTS: Forty-seven mortuary workers provided an NPS and seven (14.9%) were PCR positive; 32 provided a blood sample and eight (25%) were antibody positive, six (75%) who were seropositive were also PCR positive. Among the 81 cemetery workers, 76 provided an NPS and five (6.6%) were PCR positive; 64 provided a blood sample and 22 (34.4%) were antibody positive, three (13.6%) who were seropositive were also PCR positive. Three (22.2%) and 20 (83.3%) of the infected mortuary and cemetery workers were asymptomatic, respectively. Age <30 years (OR 4.9, 95% CI 1.7-14.6), community exposure with a known case (OR 4.7, 95% CI 1.7-13.3), and presence of symptoms in the preceding 2 weeks (OR 9.0, 95% CI 1.9-42.0) were independently associated with an increased risk of infection (PCR or antibody positive). Of the 46 environmental and surface samples, all were negative or had a Ct value of >35. CONCLUSION: A substantial proportion of mortuary and cemetery workers had evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection, which was incidentally detected upon serologic testing. These data are most consistent with community acquisition rather than occupational acquisition.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Cemeteries , Mortuary Practice , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/virology , Prevalence , Qatar/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Serologic Tests
12.
Pan Afr Med J ; 37(Suppl 1): 44, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1069977

ABSTRACT

Unlike developed countries which have purely intensivists also called critical care physicians or intensive care physicians to manage critically ill patients like those with severe forms of COVID-19, the practice of critical care medicine in Africa is coined to anaesthesiology. Hence, anaesthesiologist-intensivist physicians are the medical specialists taking care of critically ill COVID-19 patients in Africa. Likewise, unlike intensive care units (ICUs) in high income countries, those in most African countries face the challenge of a lack of emergency drugs and resuscitation equipment, limited health infrastructure and understaffed and underfunded health care systems. The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented one faced by intensivists in high-income countries and anaesthesiologist-intensivist phycisians in Africa. Infected patients with severe forms of the disease like those having grave COVID-19 complications like massive pulmonary embolism, severe cardiac arrhythmias, cardiogenic shock, septic shock, acute kidney injury or acute respiratory distress syndrome require ICU admission for better management. Both intensivists or anaesthesiologist-intensivist physicians have the peculiarity of securing the airways of critically COVID-19 patients and providing respiratory support with mechanical ventilation after laryngoscopy and endotracheal intubation when needed. In so doing, they can easily be infected from respiratory droplets or aerosols expired by the COVID-19 patients. Hence, in Africa, anaesthesiologist-intensivist phycisians have a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 compared to other health professionals. It's worth to mention that the COVID-19 pandemic struck African anaesthesiologist-intensivist phycisians and ICUs when there were neither prepared skillfully or lacked the required ICU capacity to meet the demands of thousands of severe COVID-19 African patients. These further weakened the already strained health systems in Africa. It required a lot of creativity, engineering skills and courage for these ill prepared African anaesthesiologist-intensivist physicians to provide care to these critically ill patients and improve their outcomes as the pandemic progressed. However, despites the numerous efforts made in African anaesthesiologist-Intensivist phycisians to care for critically ill COVID-19 patients, the pandemic is spreading at a rapid rate across Africa. There is an urgent need for African health authorities to anticipate on how to scale up the future high ICU capacity needs and limited ICU workforce, infrastructure and equipment to manage severe forms of COVID-19 in future. It cannot be overemphasized that these severe forms of COVID-19 are potentially fatal and are a major contributor to the death toll of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Anesthesiologists/organization & administration , COVID-19/therapy , Intensive Care Units/organization & administration , Physicians/organization & administration , Africa , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/transmission , Critical Care/organization & administration , Critical Illness , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Developing Countries , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Exposure
13.
Acta Biomed ; 91(4): e2020171, 2020 11 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060013

ABSTRACT

Introdution. In order to prevent or slow down the transmission of COVID-19, various public health measures have been introduced, including social distancing, environmental disinfection and the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). In this perspective, the clinical practice of healthcare professionals has changed dramatically. As a matter of fact, the use of surgical masks and N95 has significantly worsened the job performance of workers who deal directly with COVID-19 disease. METHODS: The study included 116 health workers employed in the pulmonology, intensive care and infectious diseases departments of Bari and Foggia Hospital, directly involved in the healthcare of patients affected by COVID-19. Between May 1, 2020 and May 31, 2020, each participant completed an online questionnaire aimed to investigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on workers' lifestyle changes and job performances. We compared the results based on the type of mask used by each participant (surgical mask vs N95). RESULTS: Although disturbances related to the use of the mask arose earlier in subjects who wore the N95 (p = 0.0094), healthcare workers that wore surgical masks reported a statistically higher average score for a greater number of disorders. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study that compares the effects of the two most used PPE on the quality of life of health workers and which highlights the greater discomfort caused by surgical masks. This result brings to light a serious social problem, being surgical masks widely used in everyday life by ordinary people and non-healthcare workers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Health Personnel , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Masks , N95 Respirators , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/virology , Adult , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Quality of Life , Self Report , Work Performance
14.
Tunis Med ; 98(8-9): 606-609, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1040429

ABSTRACT

Dealing with COVID-19 pandemic raised several issues regarding aerosol generating procedures such High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC) and Non Invasive Ventilation (NIV). Adequately managing patients with COVID-19 pneumonia, while, ensuring caregivers' safety is of utmost importance. Recommendations regarding aerosol generating procedures are, certainly, required to guide therapeutic attitudes in this context. However, excessive fear of contamination could interfere with patients' management. The present paper discussesthe place of aerosol generating procedures such as HFNC and NIV in the management of COVID-19 and does fear of aerosolization, solely, justifies the avoidance of these methods.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/therapy , Cannula , Health Personnel , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Noninvasive Ventilation , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/virology , COVID-19/transmission , Humans
16.
Work ; 67(1): 3-9, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007029

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been essential for some workplaces to stay open. Considering the rapid spread of the virus, interior architectural re-designing of these essential workplaces such as markets, banks, and drugstores is crucial for prevention. The employees, as well as the customers in these workplaces, have a high infection rate. Some precautions need to be taken urgently to prevent the spread of the disease. Some workplaces may have already performed their action plan whereas others have not. OBJECTIVE: Some practical, rapid, and cost-efficient preventive precautions are presented in this paper for employers to take action in their workplaces. METHODS: Two new proposals are advised to be carried out. The contents of these newly designed barriers will be introduced. RESULTS: Some practical and cost-efficient ideas are given within this report. CONCLUSION: All the preventions proposed in this paper are claimed to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and may save lives around the country as well as the world.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Cost-Benefit Analysis , Interior Design and Furnishings/economics , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Workplace/economics , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Humans , Occupational Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 17(20)2020 10 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1005732

ABSTRACT

It has been well documented that both risk perception and group identification are related to psychosocial well-being. However, their combined effect has rarely been analyzed. We examined the combined effect of perceived risk associated with COVID-19 infection at work and work community identification on psychosocial well-being (i.e., frequency of stress symptoms) among health care and social sector workers in Finland (N = 1 279). Data were collected via an online questionnaire in June 2020 and analyses of covariance were conducted. Perceived COVID-19 infection risk at work was classified into high, medium and low risk. In total, 41% of participants reported a high risk. After all background variables were included, participants who reported high perceived infection risk and low work community identification reported stress symptoms more often than those who reported high perceived risk and high identification (p = 0.010). Similarly, the former differed significantly from all other comparison groups (medium and low risk, p < 0.001), being the most stressed. We found that perceived infection risk and work community identification were not related to each other. Our conclusion is that high work community identification can buffer employee stress when faced with a high perceived health risk. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, work organizations with a high infection risk should advance the possibility of employees' identification with their work community.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Health Personnel/psychology , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Stress/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Social Workers/psychology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Finland/epidemiology , Humans , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , SARS-CoV-2 , Social Identification
18.
J Healthc Qual Res ; 36(1): 3-11, 2021.
Article in Spanish | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1002779

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To describe the planning and execution process of a massive seroprevalence study for SARS-CoV-2 in professionals of the Hospital Universitario Fundación Alcorcón (HUFA) (Spain). METHODS: A description is presented of the plan designed and developed at the HUFA for the execution of the extraction of the samples for serology from all the professionals who worked in the hospital between 14 and 29 April 2020. A descriptive analysis of the participation of the professionals in the study is carried out. Extraction areas, health personnel, and execution times were planned. A total of 2326 extractions were assigned to health personnel, the remaining extractions were assigned to workers from external companies. RESULTS: A total of 2641 workers (90.5%) out of 2918 candidates participated in the study. The professional category most analysed was nursing with 28.3% (n = 590). The percentage of compliance with schedule planning was 28.6%. Up to a maximum of 298 daily extractions were planned. The busiest day was the 4th day of the study with 399 extractions. CONCLUSIONS: The organising of such a large study, with a 100% coverage of those who worked in the hospital, and with such a great response from the workers involved, has led to obtaining results of high reliability in the seroprevalence study carried out. Although the percentage of participation was very high, the level of compliance with the planning was low.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/blood , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Personnel, Hospital , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Female , Hospitals, Teaching , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/virology , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Spain/epidemiology
19.
J Am Geriatr Soc ; 69(3): 593-599, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-999017

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To plan for coronavirus infectious disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine distribution, the Indiana Department of Health surveyed nursing home and assisted living facility staff. DESIGN: Cross-sectional analysis of an anonymous survey sent via text message link to personal cell phones and emails. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Nursing home and assisted living facility staff in Indiana. MEASURES: Staff characteristics including age, gender, race, ethnicity, role in the facility, experience in long-term care, and geographic location of facility were self-reported along with prior infection and willingness to receive an approved vaccine as soon as it is available. Responses were weighted to represent staff statewide. Weighted frequencies and logit regression estimated characteristics associated with vaccine willingness. RESULTS: There were 8,243 responses to the survey. For nursing home staff (survey delivered via 23,232 working phone numbers), there was a 33% response rate). There were 2,372 (29%) in nurse aide or similar roles and 1,602 nurses providing direct clinical care (19%). Overall, 45% of respondents indicated they would receive an approved COVID-19 vaccine as soon as available. Of those unwilling to take the vaccine when first available, 44% would consider in the future. Concerns about side effects was the primary reason for vaccine hesitancy (70%). Characteristics associated with increased willingness were age over 60, male, and white race (P < .0001). No statistically significant differences were observed among staff self-reporting prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: The willingness to receive the COVID-19 vaccine immediately or in the future may be as high as 69%, but varies among subgroups of nursing home staff which has implications for distribution. Educating staff on the vaccine may be critical for increasing uptake. Widespread vaccination holds the promise of protection against serious illness and death and a return of visitors and activities that support improved quality of life. This promise will not be realized without strong uptake of the vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , COVID-19/prevention & control , Nursing Homes , Nursing Staff/psychology , Vaccination/psychology , Adolescent , Adult , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Homes for the Aged , Humans , Indiana , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
20.
Int J Nurs Stud ; 114: 103811, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-988055

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: There are no publicly available national data on healthcare worker infections in Australia. It has been documented in many countries that healthcare workers (HCW) are at increased occupational risk of COVID-19. We aimed to estimate the burden of COVID-19 on Australia HCW and the health system by obtaining and organizing data on HCW infections, analyzing national HCW cases in regards to occupational risk and analyzing healthcare outbreak. METHODS: We searched government reports and websites and media reports to create a comprehensive line listing of Australian HCW infections and nosocomial outbreaks between January 25th and July 8th, 2020. A line list of HCW related COVID-19 reported cases was created and enhanced by matching data extracted from media reports of healthcare related COVID-19 relevant outbreaks and reports, using matching criteria. Rates of infections and odds ratios (ORs) for HCW were calculated per state, by comparing overall cases to HCW cases. To investigate the sources of infection amongst HCW, transmission data were collated and graphed to show distribution of sources. RESULTS: We identified 36 hospital outbreaks or HCW infection reports between January 25th and July 8th, 2020. According to our estimates, at least 536 HCW in Australia had been infected with COVID-19, comprising 6.03% of all reported infections. The rate of HCW infection was 90/100000 and of community infection 34/100,000. HCW were 2.69 times more likely to contract COVID-19 (95% CI 2.48 to 2.93; P < 0.001). The timing of hospital outbreaks did not always correspond to community peaks. Where data were available, a total of 131 HCW across 21 outbreaks led to 1656 HCW being furloughed for quarantine. In one outbreak, one hospital was closed and 1200 HCW quarantined. CONCLUSION: The study shows that HCW were at nearly 3 times the risk of infection. Of concern, this nearly tripling of risk occurred during a period of low community prevalence suggesting failures at multiple hazard levels including PPE policies within the work environment. Even in a country with relatively good control of COVID-19, HCW are at greater risk of infection than the general community and nosocomial outbreaks can have substantial effects on workforce capacity by the quarantine of numerous HCW during an outbreak. The occurrence of hospital outbreaks even when community incidence was low highlights the high risk setting that hospitals present. Australia faced a resurgence of COVID-19 after the study period, with multiple hospital outbreaks. We recommend formal reporting of HCW infections, testing protocols for nosocomial outbreaks, cohorting of workforce to minimize the impact, and improved PPE guidelines to provide precautionary and optimal protection for HCW.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Australia , Cost of Illness , Hospitals , Humans , National Health Programs , Occupational Diseases/virology , Occupational Exposure , Pandemics , Prevalence , Risk Factors
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