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1.
Am J Trop Med Hyg ; 105(6): 1476-1482, 2021 Oct 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1478300

ABSTRACT

Countries across West Africa began reporting COVID-19 cases in February 2020. By March, the pandemic began disrupting activities to control and eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) as health ministries ramped up COVID-19-related policies and prevention measures. This was followed by interim guidance from the WHO in April 2020 to temporarily pause mass drug administration (MDA) and community-based surveys for NTDs. While the pandemic was quickly evolving worldwide, in most of West Africa, governments and health ministries took quick action to implement mitigation measures to slow the spread. The U.S. Agency for International Development's (USAID) Act to End NTDs | West program (Act | West) began liaising with national NTD programs in April 2020 to pave a path toward the eventual resumption of activities. This process consisted of first collecting and analyzing COVID-19 epidemiological data, policies, and standard operating procedures across the program's 11 countries. The program then developed an NTD activity restart matrix that compiled essential considerations to restart activities. By December 2020, all 11 countries in Act | West safely restarted MDA and certain surveys to monitor NTD prevalence or intervention impact. Preliminary results show satisfactory MDA program coverage, meaning that enough people are taking the medicine to keep countries on track toward achieving their NTD disease control and elimination goals, and community perceptions have remained positive. The purpose of this article is to share the lessons and best practices that have emerged from the adoption of strategies to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus during MDA and other program activities.


Subject(s)
Anti-Infective Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/epidemiology , Mass Drug Administration , National Health Programs/organization & administration , Neglected Diseases/therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Africa, Western , Anti-Infective Agents/administration & dosage , Humans , National Health Programs/standards , Practice Guidelines as Topic , Risk Factors , Time Factors , Tropical Climate , United States , United States Agency for International Development
2.
PLoS One ; 16(9): e0257169, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1405341

ABSTRACT

A prospective study was conducted among different intra and extra-hospital populations of French Guiana to evaluate the performance of saliva testing compared to nasopharyngeal swabs. Persons aged 3 years and older with mild symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 and asymptomatic persons with a testing indication were prospectively enrolled. Nasopharyngeal and salivary samples were stored at 4°C before analysis. Both samples were analyzed with the same Real-time PCR amplification of E gene, N gene, and RdRp gene. Between July 22th and October 28th, 1159 persons were included, of which 1028 were analyzed. When only considering as positives those with 2 target genes with Ct values <35, the sensitivity of RT-PCR on saliva samples was 100% relative to nasopharyngeal samples. Specificity positive and negative predictive values were above 90%. Across a variety of cultures and socioeconomic conditions, saliva tests were generally much preferred to nasopharyngeal tests and persons seemed largely confident that they could self-sample. For positive patients defined as those with the amplification of 2 specific target genes with Ct values below 35, the sensitivity and specificity of RT-PCR on saliva samples was similar to nasopharyngeal samples despite the broad range of challenging circumstances in a tropical environment.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , Saliva/virology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/standards , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , French Guiana , Hospitals/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , Sensitivity and Specificity , Tropical Climate
3.
Indoor Air ; 31(6): 2281-2295, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1285030

ABSTRACT

The incidence of several respiratory viral infections has been shown to be related to climate. Because humans spend most of their time indoors, measures of indoor climate, rather than outdoor climate, may be better predictors of disease incidence and transmission. Therefore, understanding the relationship between indoor and outdoor climate will help illuminate their influence on the seasonality of diseases caused by respiratory viruses. Indoor-outdoor relationships between temperature and humidity have been documented in temperate regions, but little information is available for tropical regions, where seasonal patterns of respiratory viral diseases differ. We have examined indoor-outdoor correlations of temperature, relative humidity (RH), and absolute humidity (AH) over a 1-year period in each of seven tropical cities. Across all cities, the average monthly indoor temperature was 25 ± 3°C (mean ± standard deviation) with a range of 20-30°C. The average monthly indoor RH was 66 ± 9% with a range of 50-78%, and the average monthly indoor AH was 15 ± 3 g/m3 with a range of 10-23 g/m3 . Indoor AH and RH were linearly correlated with outdoor AH when the air conditioning (AC) was off, suggesting that outdoor AH may be a good proxy of indoor humidity in the absence of AC. All indoor measurements were more strongly correlated with outdoor measurements as distance from the equator increased. Such correlations were weaker during the wet season, especially when AC was in operation. These correlations will provide insight for assessing the seasonality of respiratory viral infections using outdoor climate data, which is more widely available than indoor data, even though transmission of these diseases mainly occurs indoors.


Subject(s)
Air Pollution, Indoor , Humidity , Temperature , Tropical Climate , Seasons
5.
Adv Exp Med Biol ; 1318: 333-341, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1222722

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a newly emerging pandemic caused by a novel coronavirus. After its first report in China in December 2019, the disease already spread and affected more than 200 countries worldwide. It correlates with different phenotypes ranging from an acute febrile illness to severe respiratory problems. Often, patients with COVID-19 suffer from metabolic disorders, and this can result in a more severe clinical course. COVID-19 might also co-occur with other common diseases in different settings. In tropical countries, COVID-19 has already affected thousands of local populations. Tropical diseases such as dengue and tuberculosis can modify the clinical presentation of COVID-19 and result in difficulty in the diagnosis and treatment of the patients. The complexity of concurrence between COVID-19 and tropical diseases is, thus, a matter of concern in tropical medicine. This chapter is devoted to discussing problems surrounding the management of COVID-19 in tropical countries. To exemplify the effects of COVID-19 on tropical countries, the authors would show how COVID-19 has affected Indochina, a large tropical area.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , China/epidemiology , Fever , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Tropical Climate
6.
Glob Chang Biol ; 27(7): 1319-1321, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1052282

ABSTRACT

Spillover of novel pathogens from wildlife to people, such as the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic, is increasing and this trend is most strongly associated with tropical deforestation driven by agricultural expansion. This same process is eroding natural capital, reducing forest-associated health co-benefits, and accelerating climate change. Protecting and promoting tropical forests is one of the most immediate steps we can take to simultaneously mitigate climate change while reducing the risk of future pandemics; however, success in this undertaking will require greater connectivity of policy initiatives from local to global, as well as unification of health and environmental policy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Environmental Policy , Conservation of Natural Resources , Forests , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Tropical Climate
8.
Infect Dis Poverty ; 10(1): 2, 2021 Jan 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007137

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The damage inflicted by the coronavirus diseases 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic upon humanity is and will continue to be considerable. Unprecedented progress made in global health over the past 20 years has reverted and economic growth has already evaporated, giving rise to a global recession, the likes of which we may not have experienced since the Second World War. Our aim is to draw the attention of the neglected tropical disease (NTD) community towards some of the major emerging economic opportunities which are quickly appearing on the horizon as a result of COVID-19. MAIN TEXT: This scoping review relied on a literature search comprised of a sample of articles, statements, and press releases on initiatives aimed at mitigating the impact of COVID-19, while supporting economic recovery. Of note, the donor scenario and economic development agendas are highly dynamic and expected to change rapidly as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, as are donor and lender priorities. CONCLUSIONS: The NTD community, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), will need to work quickly, diligently, and in close collaboration with decision-makers and key stakeholders, across sectors at national and international level to secure its position. Doing so might enhance the odds of grasping potential opportunities to access some of the massive resources that are now available in the form of contributions from corporate foundations, trust funds, loans, debt relieve schemes, and other financial mechanisms, as part of the ongoing and future economic development agendas and public health priorities driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper should serve as a starting point for the NTD community to seek much needed financial support in order to sustain and revitalize control and elimination efforts pertaining to NTDs in LMICs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/economics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Neglected Diseases/economics , Neglected Diseases/epidemiology , Economic Status , Global Health , Humans , Pandemics , Poverty , Public Health , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Tropical Climate , United Nations , World Health Organization
9.
Infect Dis Poverty ; 10(1): 1, 2021 Jan 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007136

ABSTRACT

With the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic showing no signs of abating, resuming neglected tropical disease (NTD) activities, particularly mass drug administration (MDA), is vital. Failure to resume activities will not only enhance the risk of NTD transmission, but will fail to leverage behaviour change messaging on the importance of hand and face washing and improved sanitation-a common strategy for several NTDs that also reduces the risk of COVID-19 spread. This so-called "hybrid approach" will demonstrate best practices for mitigating the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) by incorporating physical distancing, use of masks, and frequent hand-washing in the delivery of medicines to endemic communities and support action against the transmission of the virus through water, sanitation and hygiene interventions promoted by NTD programmes. Unless MDA and morbidity management activities resume, achievement of NTD targets as projected in the WHO/NTD Roadmap (2021-2030) will be deferred, the aspirational goal of NTD programmes to enhance universal health coverage jeopardised and the call to 'leave no one behind' a hollow one. We outline what implementing this hybrid approach, which aims to strengthen health systems, and facilitate integration and cross-sector collaboration, can achieve based on work undertaken in several African countries.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Neglected Diseases/epidemiology , Neglected Diseases/prevention & control , Africa/epidemiology , Endemic Diseases , Global Health , Humans , Hygiene , Mass Drug Administration/methods , Morbidity , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment , Physical Distancing , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sanitation , Tropical Climate , Tropical Medicine/methods
10.
J Neurol Sci ; 421: 117287, 2021 02 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-988478

ABSTRACT

We address the impact of the tropical environment on the human nervous system using the multifaceted approach characteristic of environmental neurology. First, environmental factors are examined according to their nature (physical, chemical and biological) and in relation to human activity and behavior. Some factors are specific to the tropics (climate and infections), while others are non-specific (chemicals, human communities and their way of life). Second, we examine the major role of human adaptation to the success of Homo sapiens, with emphasis on the linkage between thermoregulation and sleep-wake regulation. Third, we examine the performance of environmental neurology as a clinical discipline in tropical climates, with focus on the diagnostic and therapeutic challenges posed by human African trypanosomiasis. Finally, the prevention, early detection and monitoring of environmental neurological diseases is examined, as well as links with political and economic factors. In conclusion, practitioners of environmental neurology seek a global, multidisciplinary and holistic approach to understanding, preventing and treating neurological disorders within their purview. Environmental neurology integrates an expanded One Health concept by linking health and wellness to the interaction of plants, animals, humans and the ecosystem. Recent epidemics and the current COVID-19 pandemic exemplify the need for worldwide action to protect human health and biodiversity.


Subject(s)
Ecosystem , Environmental Exposure/adverse effects , Environmental Medicine/trends , Nervous System Diseases/epidemiology , Neurology/trends , Tropical Climate/adverse effects , Animals , Body Temperature Regulation/physiology , Environmental Medicine/methods , Humans , Nervous System Diseases/therapy , Neurology/methods
12.
Ann Biol Clin (Paris) ; 78(5): 499-518, 2020 10 01.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-836031

ABSTRACT

The French society of clinical biology "Biochemical markers of COVID-19" has set up a working group with the primary aim of reviewing, analyzing and monitoring the evolution of biological prescriptions according to the patient's care path and to look for markers of progression and severity of the disease. This study covers all public and private sectors of medical biology located in metropolitan and overseas France and also extends to the French-speaking world. This article presents the testimonies and data obtained for the "Overseas and French-speaking countries" sub-working group made up of 45 volunteer correspondents, located in 20 regions of the world. In view of the delayed spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the overseas regions and the French-speaking regions have benefited from feedback from the first territories confronted with COVID-19. Thus, the entry of the virus or its spread in epidemic form could be avoided, thanks to the rapid closure of borders. The overseas territories depend very strongly on air and/or sea links with the metropolis or with the neighboring continent. The isolation of these countries is responsible for reagent supply difficulties and has necessitated emergency orders and the establishment of stocks lasting several months, in order to avoid shortages and maintain adequate patient care. In addition, in countries located in tropical or intertropical zones, the diagnosis of COVID-19 is complicated by the presence of various zoonoses (dengue, Zika, malaria, leptospirosis, etc.).


Subject(s)
Clinical Laboratory Services , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Global Health/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Travel Medicine/organization & administration , Adult , Africa/epidemiology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Belgium/epidemiology , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Biomarkers/analysis , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19 , Cambodia/epidemiology , Child , Clinical Laboratory Services/organization & administration , Clinical Laboratory Services/statistics & numerical data , Contact Tracing/methods , Contact Tracing/statistics & numerical data , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Diagnosis, Differential , Female , France/epidemiology , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Islands/epidemiology , Language , Laos/epidemiology , Louisiana/epidemiology , Male , Medical Laboratory Personnel/organization & administration , Medical Laboratory Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Survival Analysis , Travel Medicine/methods , Travel Medicine/statistics & numerical data , Travel-Related Illness , Tropical Climate , Tropical Medicine/methods , Tropical Medicine/organization & administration , Tropical Medicine/statistics & numerical data , Vietnam/epidemiology
13.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 14(8): e0008338, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-825835

ABSTRACT

Pathogens originating from wildlife (zoonoses) pose a significant public health burden, comprising the majority of emerging infectious diseases. Efforts to control and prevent zoonotic disease have traditionally focused on animal-to-human transmission, or "spillover." However, in the modern era, increasing international mobility and commerce facilitate the spread of infected humans, nonhuman animals (hereafter animals), and their products worldwide, thereby increasing the risk that zoonoses will be introduced to new geographic areas. Imported zoonoses can potentially "spill back" to infect local wildlife-a danger magnified by urbanization and other anthropogenic pressures that increase contacts between human and wildlife populations. In this way, humans can function as vectors, dispersing zoonoses from their ancestral enzootic systems to establish reservoirs elsewhere in novel animal host populations. Once established, these enzootic cycles are largely unassailable by standard control measures and have the potential to feed human epidemics. Understanding when and why translocated zoonoses establish novel enzootic cycles requires disentangling ecologically complex and stochastic interactions between the zoonosis, the human population, and the natural ecosystem. In this Review, we address this challenge by delineating potential ecological mechanisms affecting each stage of enzootic establishment-wildlife exposure, enzootic infection, and persistence-applying existing ecological concepts from epidemiology, invasion biology, and population ecology. We ground our discussion in the neotropics, where four arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) of zoonotic origin-yellow fever, dengue, chikungunya, and Zika viruses-have separately been introduced into the human population. This paper is a step towards developing a framework for predicting and preventing novel enzootic cycles in the face of zoonotic translocations.


Subject(s)
Arbovirus Infections/epidemiology , Arboviruses , Zoonoses/epidemiology , Americas , Animals , Animals, Wild/virology , Arbovirus Infections/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Emerging/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases, Emerging/transmission , Communicable Diseases, Emerging/virology , Ecosystem , Humans , Mosquito Vectors , Tropical Climate , Zoonoses/transmission , Zoonoses/virology
15.
Med Leg J ; 88(1_suppl): 43-46, 2020 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-680501

ABSTRACT

Use of appropriate personal protective equipment is essential for healthcare workers when dealing with patients who have tested positive or are suspected of having Covid-19. Personal protective equipment is uncomfortable at best. In hot countries (like India) or in a hot place of work, its wearers are at a high risk of heat-related illnesses. Once in personal protective equipment a healthcare worker can remain in it for at least 6 h at a stretch. In summer when it is hot and humid, personal protective equipment can cause wearer dehydration, heat exhaustion or heat fatigue. In a severe form, this can result in heat stroke and a collapse while on duty. Preventive measures are needed to protect healthcare workers. This review aims to highlight the efficacy and applicability of personal cooling garments.


Subject(s)
Heat Stress Disorders/prevention & control , Hot Temperature , Occupational Exposure/prevention & control , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Body Temperature Regulation/physiology , Humans , India , Protective Clothing/statistics & numerical data , Tropical Climate
16.
J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol ; 35(3): 589-596, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-745698

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has enveloped the world and there has been a high incidence of occupational dermatoses related to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) amongst healthcare workers (HCWs) during this period. Prevention and management of these conditions will not only improve staff morale and quality of life, but will also minimize the risk of breaching PPE protocol due to such symptoms. The tropical climate in Singapore predisposes HCWs to more skin damage and pruritus due to intense heat, high humidity and sun exposure. The effects of friction, occlusion, hyperhidrosis and overheating on the skin in the tropics should not be neglected. Preventive measures can be taken based on our recommendations, and the working environment can be made more conducive for frontline HCWs. We review the literature and discuss various preventive and management strategies for these occupational skin diseases for our frontline HCWs, especially those working in less controlled working environments beyond the hospital in Singapore. Shorter shifts and frequent breaks from PPE are recommended. Duration of continuous PPE-usage should not exceed 6 h, with breaks in non-contaminated areas every 2-3 h to hydrate and mitigate the risk of skin reactions. Other strategies, such as teledermatology, should be considered so that consultations can remain accessible, while ensuring the safety and well-being of our clinical staff.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel , Occupational Exposure , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/adverse effects , Skin Diseases/etiology , Tropical Climate , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Incidence , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Singapore/epidemiology , Skin Diseases/epidemiology
18.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci ; 24(15): 8226-8231, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-695406

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To explore whether the climate has played a role in the COVID-19 outbreak, we compared virus lethality in countries closer to the Equator with others. Lethality in European territories and in territories of some nations with a non-temperate climate was also compared. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Lethality was calculated as the rate of deaths in a determinate moment from the outbreak of the pandemic out of the total of identified positives for COVID-19 in a given area/nation, based on the COVID-John Hopkins University website. Lethality of countries located within the 5th parallels North/South on 6 April and 6 May 2020, was compared with that of all the other countries. Lethality in the European areas of The Netherlands, France and the United Kingdom was also compared to the territories of the same nations in areas with a non-temperate climate. RESULTS: A lower lethality rate of COVID-19 was found in Equatorial countries both on April 6 (OR=0.72 CI 95% 0.66-0.80) and on May 6 (OR=0.48, CI 95% 0.47-0.51), with a strengthening over time of the protective effect. A trend of higher risk in European vs. non-temperate areas was found on April 6, but a clear difference was evident one month later: France (OR=0.13, CI 95% 0.10-0.18), The Netherlands (OR=0.5, CI 95% 0.3-0.9) and the UK (OR=0.2, CI 95% 0.01-0.51). This result does not seem to be totally related to the differences in age distribution of different sites. CONCLUSIONS: The study does not seem to exclude that the lethality of COVID-19 may be climate sensitive. Future studies will have to confirm these clues, due to potential confounding factors, such as pollution, population age, and exposure to malaria.


Subject(s)
Climate , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Seasons , Weather , Betacoronavirus , Brunei/epidemiology , Burundi/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Congo/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Ecuador/epidemiology , Equatorial Guinea/epidemiology , Europe , France/epidemiology , Gabon/epidemiology , Humans , Indian Ocean Islands/epidemiology , Indonesia/epidemiology , Kenya/epidemiology , Malaysia/epidemiology , Melanesia/epidemiology , Micronesia/epidemiology , Netherlands/epidemiology , Pandemics , Papua New Guinea/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Rwanda/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Samoa/epidemiology , Sao Tome and Principe/epidemiology , Seychelles/epidemiology , Singapore/epidemiology , Somalia/epidemiology , Timor-Leste/epidemiology , Tropical Climate , Uganda/epidemiology , United Kingdom/epidemiology
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