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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(7)2022 Mar 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785636

ABSTRACT

Research suggests a disparity in the prevalence of dementia, with Black older adults having double the risk compared to their White counterparts. African immigrants are a fast-growing segment of the U.S. Black population, but the dementia care needs and resources of this population are not fully understood. In this paper, we describe the process of working collaboratively with a community partner and project advisory board to conduct a culturally informed project. Specifically, we describe the process of developing culturally informed instruments to collect data on dementia care needs and resources among African immigrants. Working together with a diverse project advisory board, a guide was developed and used to conduct community conversations about experiences with dementia/memory loss. Transcripts from six conversations with 24 total participants were transcribed and analyzed thematically by two independent coders in Nvivo. These qualitative findings were used to inform the development of a survey for quantitative data collection that is currently ongoing. Themes (e.g., cultural attitudes, challenges, and current resources) from the community conversations that informed the survey are described briefly. Despite the challenges of conducting research during a global pandemic, having trusting relationships with a partnering community organization and project advisory board facilitated the successful development of instruments to conduct preliminary dementia care research in an underserved population. We anticipate that survey results will inform interventions that increase education, outreach, and access to dementia care and caregiving resources for this population. It may serve as a model for community-university partnerships for similar public health efforts in dementia as well as other chronic disease contexts.


Subject(s)
Dementia , Emigrants and Immigrants , Aged , Dementia/epidemiology , Humans , Universities , Vulnerable Populations
2.
Front Public Health ; 10: 838544, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785446

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Access to COVID-19 testing has been inequitable and misaligned with community need. However, community health centers have played a critical role in addressing the COVID-19 testing needs of historically disadvantaged communities. The aim of this paper is to explore the perceptions of COVID-19 testing barriers in six Massachusetts communities that are predominantly low income and describe how these findings were used to build tailored clinical-community strategies to addressing testing inequities. Methods: Between November 2020 and February 2021, we conducted 84 semi-structured qualitative interviews with 107 community health center staff, community partners, and residents. Resident interviews were conducted in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Arabic. We used a 2-phase framework analysis to analyze the data, including deductive coding to facilitate rapid analysis for action and an in-depth thematic analysis applying the Social Ecological Model. Results: Through the rapid needs assessment, we developed cross-site suggestions to improve testing implementation and communications, as well as community-specific recommendations (e.g., locations for mobile testing sites and local communication channels). Upstream barriers identified in the thematic analysis included accessibility of state-run testing sites, weak social safety nets, and lack of testing supplies and staffing that contributed to long wait times. These factors hindered residents' abilities to get tested, which was further exacerbated by individual fears surrounding the testing process and limited knowledge on testing availability. Discussion: Our rapid, qualitative approach created the foundation for implementing strategies that reached underserved populations at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in winter 2021. We explored perceptions of testing barriers and created actionable summaries within 1-2 months of data collection. Partnering community health centers in Massachusetts were able to use these data to respond to the local needs of each community. This study underscores the substantial impact of upstream, structural disparities on the individual experience of COVID-19 and demonstrates the utility of shifting from a typical years' long research translation process to a rapid approach of using data for action.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Poverty , Vulnerable Populations
4.
Nurs Adm Q ; 46(2): 154-166, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1746178

ABSTRACT

Since its inception, Cedars-Sinai Health System has led with compassion to embody the principles of health equity and the fight against prejudice and racism. Founded in 1902 as Los Angeles' first Jewish hospital, Cedars-Sinai through the years has continued to serve the most vulnerable, disadvantaged, and marginalized communities. In this article, we share a part of our current journey toward advancing health equity during a challenging year of pandemic and crisis (2020-2021).


Subject(s)
Health Equity , Racism , Government Programs , Humans , Pandemics , Vulnerable Populations
5.
JAMA Netw Open ; 5(3): e221744, 2022 03 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1739100

ABSTRACT

Importance: Crisis standards of care (CSOC) scores designed to allocate scarce resources during the COVID-19 pandemic could exacerbate racial disparities in health care. Objective: To analyze the association of a CSOC scoring system with resource prioritization and estimated excess mortality by race, ethnicity, and residence in a socially vulnerable area. Design, Setting, and Participants: This retrospective cohort analysis included adult patients in the intensive care unit during a regional COVID-19 surge from April 13 to May 22, 2020, at 6 hospitals in a health care network in greater Boston, Massachusetts. Participants were scored by acute severity of illness using the Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score and chronic severity of illness using comorbidity and life expectancy scores, and only participants with complete scores were included. The score was ordinal, with cutoff points suggested by the Massachusetts guidelines. Exposures: Race, ethnicity, Social Vulnerability Index. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcome was proportion of patients in the lowest priority score category stratified by self-reported race. Secondary outcomes were discrimination and calibration of the score overall and by race, ethnicity, and neighborhood Social Vulnerability Index. Projected excess deaths were modeled by race, using the priority scoring system and a random lottery. Results: Of 608 patients in the intensive care unit during the study period, 498 had complete data and were included in the analysis; this population had a median (IQR) age of 67 (56-75) years, 191 (38.4%) female participants, 79 (15.9%) Black participants, and 225 patients (45.7%) with COVID-19. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for the priority score was 0.79 and was similar across racial groups. Black patients were more likely than others to be in the lowest priority group (12 [15.2%] vs 34 [8.1%]; P = .046). In an exploratory simulation model using the score for ventilator allocation, with only those in the highest priority group receiving ventilators, there were 43.9% excess deaths among Black patients (18 of 41 patients) and 28.6% (58 of 203 patients among all others (P = .05); when the highest and intermediate priority groups received ventilators, there were 4.9% (2 of 41 patients) excess deaths among Black patients and 3.0% (6 of 203) among all others (P = .53). A random lottery resulted in more excess deaths than the score. Conclusions and Relevance: In this study, a CSOC priority score resulted in lower prioritization of Black patients to receive scarce resources. A model using a random lottery resulted in more estimated excess deaths overall without improving equity by race. CSOC policies must be evaluated for their potential association with racial disparities in health care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , Health Care Rationing/statistics & numerical data , Residence Characteristics/statistics & numerical data , Standard of Care , Aged , Boston , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , Critical Care , Female , Health Priorities , Healthcare Disparities , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Organ Dysfunction Scores , Retrospective Studies , Severity of Illness Index , Vulnerable Populations/statistics & numerical data
6.
Ciênc. Saúde Colet ; 25(supl.1): 2447-2456, Mar. 2020. tab, graf
Article in Spanish | WHO COVID, LILACS (Americas) | ID: covidwho-1725047

ABSTRACT

Resumen El objetivo de este trabajo es explorar los sentimientos y expectativas que genera el COVID-19 en Argentina durante la primera etapa de la pandemia. Se aplicó una encuesta de la Organización Mundial de la Salud adaptada al contexto local. Se incluyeron preguntas abiertas para indagar sentimientos de las personas frente al COVID-19, y se realizó un análisis de contenido. Como resultados se advierte que la población encuestada siente incertidumbre, miedo y angustia, pero también emerge un sentimiento de responsabilidad y cuidado frente al COVID-19. Así mismo se destacan sentimientos positivos para la sociedad como una valoración de la interdependencia social. Los resultados arribados señalan que el impacto en la salud mental es desigual según el género, el nivel educativo alcanzado y el confort percibido en el hogar. El estudio permite concluir que las dimensiones emocionales y vinculares de las personas resultan aspectos centrales ante la pandemia del COVID-19 en Argentina. Es recomendable que estas dimensiones, así como y su impacto subjetivo y social diferencial entre los diversos grupos poblacionales, sean consideradas en la planificación de políticas para afrontar el COVID-19.


Abstract The scope of this work is to explore the feelings and expectations that COVID-19 has generated in Argentina during the first stage of the pandemic. A survey of the World Health Organization adapted to the local context was applied. Open-ended questions were included to study people's feelings about COVID-19, and content analysis was subsequently conducted. In terms of results, it is revealed that the population surveyed feels uncertainty, fear and anguish, albeit a feeling of responsibility and care in the face of COVID-19 also emerges. Moreover, positive feelings regarding society stand out as an achievement of social interdependence. The results obtained show that the impact on mental health differs in accordance with gender, educational level, and perceived comfort in the home. The study concludes that the emotional and bonding dimensions of people are central to confronting the COVID-19 pandemic in Argentina. It is recommended that these dimensions, as well as their subjective and differential social impact among the different population groups, should be considered in the planning of policies to address the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Humans , Male , Female , Adult , Aged , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Emotions , Pandemics/prevention & control , Betacoronavirus , Anxiety/epidemiology , Argentina/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Mental Health , Cross-Sectional Studies , Age Factors , Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Health Care Surveys/statistics & numerical data , Uncertainty , Vulnerable Populations/psychology , Educational Status , Fear , Health Impact Assessment/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged
13.
S Afr Med J ; 112(2): 13501, 2022 02 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1679055

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In South Africa (SA), >2.4 million cases of COVID­19 and >72 000 deaths were recorded between March 2020 and 1 August 2021, affecting the country's 52 districts to various extents. SA has committed to a COVID­19 vaccine roll-out in three phases, prioritising frontline workers, the elderly, people with comorbidities and essential workers. However, additional actions will be necessary to support efficient allocation and equitable access for vulnerable, access-constrained communities. OBJECTIVES: To explore various determinants of disease severity, resurgence risk and accessibility in order to aid an equitable, effective vaccine roll-out for SA that would maximise COVID­19 epidemic control by reducing the number of COVID­19 transmissions and resultant deaths, while at the same time reducing the risk of vaccine wastage. METHODS: For the 52 districts of SA, 26 COVID­19 indicators such as hospital admissions, deaths in hospital and mobility were ranked and hierarchically clustered with cases to identify which indicators can be used as indicators for severity or resurgence risk. Districts were then ranked using the estimated COVID­19 severity and resurgence risk to assist with prioritisation of vaccine roll-out. Urban and rural accessibility were also explored as factors that could limit vaccine roll-out in hard-to-reach communities. RESULTS: Highly populated urban districts showed the most cases. Districts such as Buffalo City, City of Cape Town and Nelson Mandela Bay experienced very severe first and second waves of the pandemic. Districts with high mobility, population size and density were found to be at highest risk of resurgence. In terms of accessibility, we found that 47.2% of the population are within 5 km of a hospital with ≥50 beds, and this percentage ranged from 87.0% in City of Cape Town to 0% in Namakwa district. CONCLUSIONS: The end goal is to provide equal distribution of vaccines proportional to district populations, which will provide fair protection. Districts with a high risk of resurgence and severity should be prioritised for vaccine roll-out, particularly the major metropolitan areas. We provide recommendations for allocations of different vaccine types for each district that consider levels of access, numbers of doses and cold-chain storage capability.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/prevention & control , Mass Vaccination/organization & administration , Health Services Accessibility , Hospitalization , Humans , Patient Acuity , South Africa , Vulnerable Populations
14.
Pediatrics ; 149(12 Suppl 2)2022 02 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1674081

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic has led to drastic public health measures, including school closures to slow the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection. Reopening educational settings by using diagnostic testing approaches in schools can help accelerate the safe return of students and staff to on-site learning by quickly and accurately identifying cases, limiting the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, and ultimately preventing unnecessary school and work absenteeism. Although the National Institutes of Health has identified community partnerships as the foundation for reducing health disparities, we found limited application of a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach in school engagement. Guided by the CBPR conceptual model, we provide case studies of 2 established and long-standing school-academic partnerships built on CBPR processes and practices that have served as a research infrastructure to reach underserved children and families during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. The process described in this article can serve as an initial platform to continue to build capacity toward increasing health equity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Community-Institutional Relations , Pandemics , Return to School , Vulnerable Populations , Academic Medical Centers , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Mexican Americans , Rural Population , Schools
16.
PLoS One ; 16(12): e0260613, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1638334

ABSTRACT

There is widespread recognition that stressors related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) jeopardize the development of emerging adults, more particularly those living in disadvantaged communities. What is less well understood is what might support emerging adult resilience to COVID-19-related stressors. In response, this article reports a 5-week qualitative study with 24 emerging adults (average age: 20) living in a South African township. Using digital diaries and repeated individual interviews, young people shared their lived experiences of later (i.e., month 4 and 7) lockdown-related challenges (i.e., contagion fears; livelihood threats; lives-on-hold) and how they managed these challenges. An inductive thematic analysis showed that personal and collective compliance, generous ways-of-being, and tolerance-facilitators enabled emerging adult resilience to said challenges. Importantly, these resilience-enablers drew on resources associated with multiple systems and reflected the situational and cultural context of the township in question. In short, supporting emerging adult resilience to COVID-19-related stressors will require contextually aligned, multisystemic responses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Resilience, Psychological , Adolescent , COVID-19/economics , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Male , Medicine, African Traditional , South Africa/epidemiology , Vulnerable Populations/psychology , Young Adult
17.
Scand J Public Health ; 49(7): 779-789, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1636241

ABSTRACT

AIMS: This paper highlights how the novel coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has amplified economic instability and health risks for disconnected youth and young adults (YYA). We offer a brief review of governmental policy responses in four OECD countries and how they may impact the disconnect YYA within those countries. METHODS: Literature was reviewed utilizing Cochrane Library, ERIC, PsychINFO, PubMed/MEDLINE and Web of Science to outline existing inequities among disconnected YYA and COVID-19 economic and health impacts. Government responses to COVID-19 from four OECD countries were reviewed. Using the social protection model, we highlighted significant policy changes and developments that influence the protection of vulnerable populations and evaluated the potential effect of long-term economic dislocations prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. RESULTS: Disconnected YYA suffered significant financial and health burdens with no social protection floor in place. Lessons learned prior to and during the pandemic indicate that initiatives aimed at improving health and well-being among vulnerable YYA and their communities must be adequately funded, flexible, and comprehensive. Attempts to connect or reconnect YYA who were disconnected prior to the COVID-19 pandemic will require a re-envisioning of policy. CONCLUSIONS: Globally, governments must invest in social safety net programs that focus on supporting those most at-risk. A concentrated focus on job creation, education and training, and paid work experience, investments in early childhood care and education, housing, health and mental health care is necessary to not only offset the pandemic's effects but also support thriving in the future for YYA.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adolescent , Child, Preschool , Humans , Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development , SARS-CoV-2 , Vulnerable Populations , Young Adult
18.
Curr Opin Psychiatry ; 34(4): 351-356, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1635161

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions have uniquely and disproportionately affected vulnerable populations. This review summarizes recent evidence on the relationship between psychiatric disorders, substance use disorders and COVID-19, highlighting acute and long-term risks, pharmacotherapy interactions and implications regarding appropriate and timely evidence-based treatment. RECENT FINDINGS: Evidence points to a complex relationship between psychiatric and substance use disorders and COVID-19. A range of risk factors associated with psychiatric and substance use disorders increases the risk of exposure to, and complications arising from, the COVID-19 virus. COVID-19 infection has been indicated as having acute and potential long-term impacts on both psychiatric and substance use disorders. Social disruption associated with restrictions imposed to curb transmission has also been identified as a risk factor for new onset of disorders and recurrence and exacerbation of existing conditions. SUMMARY: Early recognition and intervention are key to preventing chronic disability associated with psychiatric disorders, substance use disorders, and their co-occurrence. It is critical that those most in need of services do not fall through the cracks of our healthcare systems. The pandemic has fast tracked the opportunity for widespread implementation of digital health interventions but ensuring these are accessible and available to all, including our most vulnerable, will be a critical task for our future health and social ecosystems.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/psychology , Mental Disorders/complications , Mental Disorders/psychology , Substance-Related Disorders/complications , Substance-Related Disorders/psychology , Drug Interactions , Humans , Mental Disorders/drug therapy , Pandemics , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Vulnerable Populations/psychology
19.
Nurs Forum ; 57(1): 177-181, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621952

ABSTRACT

Black men disproportionately experience the worst health outcomes among U.S. populations. Systemic social, political, and healthcare problems are important intersecting issues of Black men's poor health outcomes. As nursing is one of the most trusted professions, it is nurses' responsibilities to include care for vulnerable populations. In this creative controversy an alternative perspective of Black men as a vulnerable population is proposed. Potential tensions and an introspective call to action for all nurses is included.


Subject(s)
Vulnerable Populations , Humans , Male
20.
J Ambul Care Manage ; 45(1): 13-21, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1604140

ABSTRACT

Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) have been essential in response to COVID-19 outbreaks among vulnerable populations. Our rural FQHC had a primary role in early detection of and response to a poultry plant-related outbreak at the outset of the pandemic that disproportionately and gravely affected the local Hispanic community. The health center activated a rapid local response that included the community's first mass testing event and first acute respiratory treatment clinic, both of which were central to abatement. Lessons learned from this experience provide important guidance for the potential role of FQHCs in infection outbreak preparedness in marginalized communities.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Ambulatory Care Facilities , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Vulnerable Populations
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