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1.
Int J Tuberc Lung Dis ; 25(5): 382-387, 2021 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1502726

ABSTRACT

In September 2018, all countries made a commitment at the first ever United Nations High-Level Meeting (UNHLM) on TB, to provide TB preventive treatment (TPT) to at least 30 million people at high-risk of TB disease between 2018 and 2022. In the WHO South-East Asia Region (SEA Region), which accounts for 44% of the global TB burden, only 1.2 million high-risk individuals (household contacts and people living with HIV) were provided TPT (11% of the 10.8 million regional UNHLM TPT target) in 2018 and 2019. By 2020, almost all 11 countries of the SEA Region had revised their policies on TPT target groups and criteria to assess TPT eligibility, and had adopted at least one shorter TPT regimen recommended in the latest WHO TPT guidelines. The major challenges for TPT scale-up in the SEA Region are resource shortages, knowledge and service delivery/uptake gaps among providers and service recipients, and the lack of adequate quantities of rifapentine for use in shorter TPT regimens. There are several regional opportunities to address these gaps and countries of the SEA Region must make use of these opportunities to scale up TPT services rapidly to reduce the TB burden in the SEA Region.


Subject(s)
Tuberculosis , Asia, Southeastern/epidemiology , Far East , Humans , Tuberculosis/drug therapy , Tuberculosis/epidemiology , Tuberculosis/prevention & control , United Nations , World Health Organization
2.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 69(14): 411-415, 2020 Apr 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389840

ABSTRACT

Presymptomatic transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), might pose challenges for disease control. The first case of COVID-19 in Singapore was detected on January 23, 2020, and by March 16, a total of 243 cases had been confirmed, including 157 locally acquired cases. Clinical and epidemiologic findings of all COVID-19 cases in Singapore through March 16 were reviewed to determine whether presymptomatic transmission might have occurred. Presymptomatic transmission was defined as the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from an infected person (source patient) to a secondary patient before the source patient developed symptoms, as ascertained by exposure and symptom onset dates, with no evidence that the secondary patient had been exposed to anyone else with COVID-19. Seven COVID-19 epidemiologic clusters in which presymptomatic transmission likely occurred were identified, and 10 such cases within these clusters accounted for 6.4% of the 157 locally acquired cases. In the four clusters for which the date of exposure could be determined, presymptomatic transmission occurred 1-3 days before symptom onset in the presymptomatic source patient. To account for the possibility of presymptomatic transmission, officials developing contact tracing protocols should strongly consider including a period before symptom onset. Evidence of presymptomatic transmission of SARS-CoV-2 underscores the critical role social distancing, including avoidance of congregate settings, plays in controlling the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Asymptomatic Diseases , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Adult , Cluster Analysis , Contact Tracing , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Singapore/epidemiology
3.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(7)2021 03 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1378230

ABSTRACT

People who identify as trans and gender non-binary experience many challenges in their lives and more interest is being paid to their overall health and wellbeing. However, little is known about their experiences and perceptions regarding their distinct psychosocial needs. The aim of this systematic review is to critically evaluate and synthesize the existing research evidence relating to the unique psychological and social experiences of trans people and identify aspects that may help or hinder access to appropriate psychosocial interventions and supports. The PRISMA procedure was utilized. A search of relevant databases from January 2010 to January 2021 was undertaken. Studies were identified that involved trans people, and addressed issues related to their psychosocial needs. The search yielded 954 papers in total. Following the application of rigorous inclusion and exclusion criteria a total of 18 papers were considered suitable for the systematic review. Quality was assessed using the MMAT instrument. Following analysis, four themes were identified: (i) stigma, discrimination and marginalization (ii) trans affirmative experiences (iii) formal and informal supports, and (iv) healthcare access. The policy, education and practice development implications are highlighted and discussed. Future research opportunities have been identified that will add significantly to the body of evidence that may further the development of appropriate health interventions and supports to this population.


Subject(s)
Gender Identity , Psychosocial Support Systems , Humans , Perception , Qualitative Research , Social Stigma
4.
JMIR Diabetes ; 6(3): e25820, 2021 Jul 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1311338

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: With increasing type 2 diabetes prevalence, there is a need for effective programs that support diabetes management and improve type 2 diabetes outcomes. Mobile health (mHealth) interventions have shown promising results. With advances in wearable sensors and improved integration, mHealth programs could become more accessible and personalized. OBJECTIVE: The study aimed to evaluate the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of a personalized mHealth-anchored intervention program in improving glycemic control and enhancing care experience in diabetes management. The program was coincidentally implemented during the national-level lockdown for COVID-19 in Singapore, allowing for a timely study of the use of mHealth for chronic disease management. METHODS: Patients with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes were enrolled from the Singapore Armed Forces and offered a 3-month intervention program in addition to the usual care they received. The program was standardized to include (1) in-person initial consultation with a clinical dietitian; (2) in-person review with a diabetes specialist doctor; (3) 1 continuous glucose monitoring device; (4) access to the mobile app for dietary intake and physical activity tracking, and communication via messaging with the dietitian and doctor; and (5) context-sensitive digital health coaching over the mobile app. Medical support was rendered to the patients on an as-needed basis when they required advice on adjustment of medications. Measurements of weight, height, and glycated hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) were conducted at 2 in-person visits at the start and end of the program. At the end of the program, patients were asked to complete a short acceptability feedback survey to understand the motivation for joining the program, their satisfaction, and suggestions for improvement. RESULTS: Over a 4-week recruitment period, 130 individuals were screened, the enrollment target of 30 patients was met, and 21 patients completed the program and were included in the final analyses; 9 patients were lost to follow-up (full data were not available for the final analyses). There were no differences in the baseline characteristics between patients who were included and excluded from the final analyses (age category: P=.23; gender: P=.21; ethnicity: P>.99; diabetes status category: P=.52, medication adjustment category: P=.65; HbA1c category: P=.69; BMI: P>.99). The 21 patients who completed the study rated a mean of 9.0 out of 10 on the Likert scale for both satisfaction questions. For the Yes-No question on benefit of the program, all of the patients selected "Yes." Mean HbA1c decreased from 7.6% to 7.0% (P=.004). There were no severe hypoglycemia events (glucose level <3.0 mmol/L) reported. Mean weight decreased from 76.8 kg to 73.9 kg (P<.001), a mean decrease of 3.5% from baseline weight. Mean BMI decreased from 27.8 kg/m2 to 26.7 kg/m2 (P<.001). CONCLUSIONS: The personalized mHealth program was feasible, acceptable, and produced significant reductions in HbA1c (P=.004) and body weight (P<.001) in individuals with type 2 diabetes. Such mHealth programs could overcome challenges posed to chronic disease management by COVID-19, including disruptions to in-person health care access.

5.
Turk Thorac J ; 22(2): 142-148, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1285488

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Millions of people suffer from sleep disturbances. In addition, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic created several new challenges-particularly for frontline healthcare workers (HCWs). This study assessed the sleep quality (SQ) among HCWs. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted using an English-language online survey. The participants were invited via a web link sent using social network platforms. It included sociodemographic- and profession-related characteristics. COVID-19-associated risks were assessed (e.g., being on the front line, doing swabs, satisfaction about protective equipment, and management protocols). Assessment of SQ was done using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and various medical errors were recorded. RESULTS: A total of 217 HCWs completed the survey with mean (±standard deviation) age of 35.8 (±7.3) years; 56.2% were male, 18.43% had comorbidities, and 61.75% experienced sleep difficulties before the COVID-19 crisis. This work reports a 78.8% prevalence of poor SQ, with the mean (standard deviation) global PSQI score of 9.36 (±4.4). HCWs with poor sleep experienced more positive comorbid profile (23.64% versus 6.52%, p=0.01). Working on the front lines of COVID-19 was associated with poor sleep (69.59% versus 47.83%, p=0.006). Among the participants, 77.42% performed medical errors, particularly not checking for drug allergies (17.97%), dispensing medication with incomplete instructions (20.74%), providing incorrect doses or overdosing (14.75%), incorrectly explaining the use of medication (9.22%), and prescribing a drug to the wrong patient (10.14%). CONCLUSION: This nationwide survey reported high prevalence of poor SQ among HCWs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Being an HCW on the front lines of COVID-19 and doing swabs with a positive comorbidity was associated with poor sleep.

6.
Subst Use Misuse ; 56(10): 1476-1482, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1270720

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: COVID-19 has resulted in extraordinary adversities. Mandates such as distancing and variations to treatment services were implemented to slow transmission of the virus, but created new challenges for persons with Substance Use Disorder (SUD). To better understand this phenomenon, we surveyed healthcare professionals on how they believe COVID-19 has impacted persons with SUD and what needs to occur to effectively treat this vulnerable population. Methods: Attending physicians, residents, nurses, medical and nursing students, and other healthcare professionals were asked to respond to three open-ended questions related to the impact of COVID-19 on persons with SUD. Two independent coders reviewed the comments utilizing constant comparative analysis to develop themes. Results: Common themes of concern were found from the respective participants (n = 205) including: lack of access to treatment, feelings of isolation, negative impacts on mental health, and the possibility of relapse. Healthcare strategies to effectively treat and help persons with SUD included increasing access to treatment including telehealth, development of peer support groups, availability of mental health resources, development of enhanced communication channels between providers and patients, and systematic changes. Conclusion: During the COVID-19 pandemic, overdose deaths have dramatically increased. As the short-term and long-term effects of the pandemic become more apparent, swift and comprehensive responses and policies must be enacted. This study provides insight from healthcare providers on the effects of the pandemic for persons with SUD. Many preexisting issues remain unresolved (e.g. stigma and healthcare disparities), and now the pandemic has presented new obstacles as noted by the providers. The findings from this study provide implications for important discussion regarding the development of strategies for substance use treatment and harm reduction.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance-Related Disorders , Delivery of Health Care , Health Personnel , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Substance-Related Disorders/therapy
7.
JMIR Res Protoc ; 10(6): e25271, 2021 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1268221

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has raised unprecedented challenges in the management of patients with cancer and has increased the demands for digital health tools that, for example, could facilitate remote monitoring of patients. Based on this, the Gruppo Italiano Malattie Ematologiche dell'Adulto (GIMEMA) has recently developed a digital health tool dedicated to patients with hematologic malignancies: the GIMEMA-ALLIANCE platform. OBJECTIVE: The main objectives of this web-based platform are to generate relevant data to better understand quality of life, symptoms, and medication adherence during the COVID-19 pandemic and postpandemic era; to develop a prospective real-life registry on outcomes of patients with hematologic cancer, with or without a diagnosis of COVID-19; and to facilitate patient-centered care in routine practice. METHODS: The platform consists of physician- and patient-secure portals and enables electronic patient-reported outcome (ePRO) assessments with real-time graphical presentation to physicians of individual patient symptoms and quality-of-life outcomes. Automated alerts are sent to treating hematologists based on the following predetermined criteria: presence of clinically important problems and symptoms, problems with adherence to therapy, and risk of COVID-19 diagnosis. The platform also allows physicians to set up video consultations. Clinical information regarding disease and treatment as well as clinical and survival outcomes are also prospectively collected. RESULTS: Recruitment of participants started in December 2020. As of April 2021, a total of 116 patients have been enrolled in this study. Use of this platform may help to improve patient-physician communication and help hematologists in the early recognition of clinically important problems and symptoms of their patients. More than 20 community and university-based hospitals have currently agreed to participate. In addition to patient-reported outcome data, the prospective collection of disease- and treatment-related information, as well as data on possible COVID-19 diagnosis and COVID-19 vaccination, will allow the development of a large database to also identify subgroups of patients at risk of poor outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Data generated via this platform will help to answer clinically relevant questions for patients with hematologic malignancies during the COVID-19 pandemic and postpandemic era. The use of the GIMEMA-ALLIANCE platform in routine practice may also contribute to enhancing patient-centered care. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04581187; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04581187. INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID): PRR1-10.2196/25271.

8.
Muscle Nerve ; 64(3): 321-327, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1261772

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION/AIMS: In this study, we examined the social and health impacts of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and social guidelines on people with muscular dystrophies. METHODS: A prospective de-identified electronic survey was distributed to adults with self-reported facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD), myotonic dystrophy (DM), and limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD) enrolled in national registries or with patient advocacy groups. The COVID-19 Impact Survey was developed by muscular dystrophy experts in association with patient collaborators and advocacy groups. The Perceived Stress Scale was used to measure perceived stress. RESULTS: Respondents (n = 774: 56% FSHD; 35% DM, and 9% LGMD) were mostly women and middle-aged (range 19-87 y). Rates of COVID-19 infections were low (<1%), compliance with local social distancing guidelines and policies high (98%). Major challenges reported during the pandemic included: obtaining treatment (40%), managing stress (37%), social distancing (36%), and obtaining essentials (34%). The majority reported a slight worsening in their disease state. Respondents reported moderate stress levels (stress score = 15.4; range = 0-35), with higher stress levels reported by women and those under age 30 y. Three-quarters of participants who participated in telemedicine visits were satisfied with the encounters; however, most reported a preference for in-person visits. DISCUSSION: People with muscular dystrophy reported moderate stress and challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Interventions such as exercise and stress-coping strategies, including strategies specific to women or individuals <30 y, may be important. Further investigation is needed into the role of telemedicine in the care of individuals with muscular dystrophy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Muscular Dystrophies/psychology , Physical Distancing , Self Report , Social Interaction , Surveys and Questionnaires , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Muscular Dystrophies/epidemiology , Prospective Studies , Young Adult
9.
JMIR Ment Health ; 8(5): e25708, 2021 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1256249

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Electronic mental (e-mental) health offers an opportunity to overcome many challenges such as cost, accessibility, and the stigma associated with mental health, and most people with lived experiences of mental problems are in favor of using applications and websites to manage their mental health problems. However, the use of these new technologies remains weak in the area of mental health and psychiatry. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to characterize the social representations associated with e-mental health by all actors to implement new technologies in the best possible way in the health system. METHODS: A free-association task method was used. The data were subjected to a lexicometric analysis to qualify and quantify words by analyzing their statistical distribution, using the ALCESTE method with the IRaMuTeQ software. RESULTS: In order of frequency, the terms most frequently used to describe e-mental health in the whole corpus are: "care" (n=21), "internet" (n=21), "computing" (n=15), "health" (n=14), "information" (n=13), "patient" (n=12), and "tool" (n=12). The corpus of text is divided into 2 themes, with technological and computing terms on one side and medical and public health terms on the other. The largest family is focused on "care," "advances," "research," "life," "quality," and "well-being," which was significantly associated with users. The nursing group used very medical terms such as "treatment," "diagnosis," "psychiatry"," and "patient" to define e-mental health. CONCLUSIONS: This study shows that there is a gap between the representations of users on e-mental health as a tool for improving their quality of life and those of health professionals (except nurses) that are more focused on the technological potential of these digital care tools. Developers, designers, clinicians, and users must be aware of the social representation of e-mental health conditions uses and intention of use. This understanding of everyone's stakes will make it possible to redirect the development of tools to adapt them as much as possible to the needs and expectations of the actors of the mental health system.

10.
Int J Disaster Risk Reduct ; 61: 102367, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1252984

ABSTRACT

Like many others across the globe, Filipinos continue to suffer from the COVID-19 pandemic. To shed light on how the Philippines initially managed the disease, our paper analyzed the early phase of the government's pandemic response. Using machine learning, we compiled the official press releases issued by the Department of Health from early January to mid-April 2020 where a total of 283,560 datasets amounting to 2.5 megabytes (Mb) were analyzed using the Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) algorithm. Our results revealed five latent themes: the highest effort (40%) centered on "Nationwide Reporting of COVID-19 Status", while "Contact Tracing of Suspected and Infected Individuals" had the least focus at only 11.68%- indicating a lack of priority in this area. Our findings suggest that while the government was ill-prepared in the early phase of the pandemic, it exerted efforts in rearranging its fiscal and operational priorities toward the management of the disease. However, we emphasize that this article should be read and understood with caution. More than a year has already passed since the outbreak in the country and many (in)actions and challenges have adversely impacted its response. These include the Duterte administration's securitization and militarization of pandemic response and its apparent failure to find a balance between the lives and livelihoods of Filipinos, to name a few. We strongly recommend that other scholars study the various aspects of the government's response, i.e., economic, peace and security, agriculture, and business, to assess better how the country responded and continually responds to the pandemic.

11.
Pediatr Blood Cancer ; 68(7): e29049, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217408

ABSTRACT

Thrombosis within the microvasculature and medium to large vessels is a serious and common complication among critically ill individuals with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). While children are markedly less likely to develop severe disease than adults, they remain at risk for thrombosis during acute infection and with the post-acute inflammatory illness termed multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children. Significant knowledge deficits in understanding COVID-19-associated coagulopathy and thrombotic risk pose clinical challenges for pediatric providers who must incorporate expert opinion and personal experience to manage individual patients. We discuss clinical scenarios to provide framework for characterizing thrombosis risk and thromboprophylaxis in children with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Anticoagulants/administration & dosage , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome , Thrombosis , Adolescent , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/drug therapy , Child , Female , Humans , Male , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/blood , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/drug therapy , Thrombosis/blood , Thrombosis/drug therapy
12.
Vaccine ; 39(22): 3018-3024, 2021 05 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1208593

ABSTRACT

The Japanese immunization program has made considerable progress since 2009: several new vaccines have been introduced and most are included in the National Immunization Program (NIP). In October 2020, the Japanese law on immunization was revised, which resulted in a few laudable achievements. First, rotavirus vaccines were added to the NIP, 10 years after their introduction, and noteworthy studies of vaccine effectiveness and the incidence of intussusception in Japanese children were published. Second, rules on vaccine intervals-which had been a longstanding concern-were withdrawn. In addition to this revision of the law, the Japanese version of the Vaccine Information Statement (VIS) was released by the Japan Pediatric Society in 2018. The VIS provides useful caregiver information on general immunization concepts and individual vaccines. Further challenges for the Japanese immunization program include (1) administering a booster dose of pertussis-containing vaccine to preschool children or teenagers, (2) reestablishing the active recommendation for human papilloma virus vaccines, (3) adding the mumps and influenza vaccines to the NIP, and (4) ensuring optimal dosing of seasonal influenza vaccines. During the current coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, vaccination rates among children have been decreasing in many countries. In Japan, vaccination rates have been stable in infants, but declining among toddlers and school-aged children, despite public awareness of the need for timely administration of vaccines during the pandemic. Clearly, further action is needed if we are to adequately protect children living in Japan from vaccine-preventable diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adolescent , Child , Child, Preschool , Humans , Immunization Programs , Infant , Japan , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
13.
J R Soc Interface ; 18(177): 20210036, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1205902

ABSTRACT

Under the implementation of non-pharmaceutical interventions such as social distancing and lockdowns, household transmission has been shown to be significant for COVID-19, posing challenges for reducing incidence in settings where people are asked to self-isolate at home and to spend increasing amounts of time at home due to distancing measures. Accordingly, characteristics of households in a region have been shown to relate to transmission heterogeneity of the virus. We introduce a discrete-time stochastic epidemiological model to examine the impact of the household size distribution in a region on the transmission dynamics. We choose parameters to reflect incidence in two health regions of the Greater Vancouver area in British Columbia and simulate the impact of distancing measures on transmission, with household size distribution the only different parameter between simulations for the two regions. Our result suggests that the dissimilarity in household size distribution alone can cause significant differences in incidence of the two regions, and the distributions drive distinct dynamics that match reported cases. Furthermore, our model suggests that offering individuals a place to isolate outside their household can speed the decline in cases, and does so more effectively where there are more larger households.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Incidence , Physical Distancing , SARS-CoV-2
14.
OMICS ; 25(5): 269-278, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1202572

ABSTRACT

With coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19), we have witnessed a shift from public health to planetary health and a growing recognition of the importance of systems science in developing effective solutions against pandemics in the 21st century. COVID-19 and the history of frequent infectious outbreaks in the last two decades suggest that COVID-19 is likely a dry run for future ecological crises. Now is the right time to plan ahead and deploy the armamentarium of systems science scholarship for planetary health. The science of epigenomics, which investigates both genetic and nongenetic traits regarding heritable phenotypic alterations, and new approaches to understanding genome regulation in humans and pathogens offer veritable prospects to boost the global scientific capacities to innovate therapeutics and diagnostics against novel and existing infectious agents. Several reversible epigenetic alterations, such as chromatin remodeling and histone methylation, control and influence gene expression. COVID-19 lethality is linked, in part, to the cytokine storm, age, and status of the immune system in a given person. Additionally, due to reduced human mobility and daily activities, effects of the pandemic on the environment have been both positive and negative. For example, reduction in environmental pollution and lesser extraction from nature have potential positive corollaries on water and air quality. Negative effects include pollution as plastics and other materials were disposed in unconventional places and spaces in the course of the pandemic. I discuss the opportunities and challenges associated with the science of epigenomics, specifically with an eye to inform and prevent future ecological crises and pandemics that are looming on the horizon in the 21st century. In particular, this article underscores that epigenetics of both viruses and the host may influence virus infectivity and severity of attendant disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Ecology , Environmental Health , Epigenesis, Genetic , Epigenomics , Gene Expression Regulation , Global Health , Host Microbial Interactions/genetics , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
15.
BMJ Open ; 11(4): e049210, 2021 04 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1199792

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To explore the experiences of service users, carers and staff seeking or providing secondary mental health services during the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN: Qualitative interview study, codesigned with mental health service users and carers. METHODS: We conducted semistructured, telephone or online interviews with a purposively constructed sample; a lived experience researcher conducted and analysed interviews with service users. Analysis was based on the constant comparison method. SETTING: National Health Service (NHS) secondary mental health services in England between June and August 2020. PARTICIPANTS: Of 65 participants, 20 had either accessed or needed to access English secondary mental healthcare during the pandemic; 10 were carers of people with mental health difficulties; 35 were members of staff working in NHS secondary mental health services during the pandemic. RESULTS: Experiences of remote care were mixed. Some service users valued the convenience of remote methods in the context of maintaining contact with familiar clinicians. Most participants commented that a lack of non-verbal cues and the loss of a therapeutic 'safe space' challenged therapeutic relationship building, assessments and identification of deteriorating mental well-being. Some carers felt excluded from remote meetings and concerned that assessments were incomplete without their input. Like service users, remote methods posed challenges for clinicians who reported uncertainty about technical options and a lack of training. All groups expressed concern about intersectionality exacerbating inequalities and the exclusion of some service user groups if alternatives to remote care are lost. CONCLUSIONS: Though remote mental healthcare is likely to become increasingly widespread in secondary mental health services, our findings highlight the continued importance of a tailored, personal approach to decision making in this area. Further research should focus on which types of consultations best suit face-to-face interaction, and for whom and why, and which can be provided remotely and by which medium.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Caregivers , England/epidemiology , Humans , Mental Health , SARS-CoV-2 , State Medicine
16.
Implement Sci Commun ; 2(1): 38, 2021 Apr 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1175353

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted individuals with eating disorders; resulting in increased symptoms, as well as feelings of isolation and anxiety. To conform with social distancing requirements, outpatient eating disorder treatment in Canada is being delivered virtually, but a lack of direction surrounding this change creates challenges for practitioners, patients, and families. As a result, there is an urgent need to not only adapt evidence-based care, including family-based treatment (FBT), to virtual formats, but to study its implementation in eating disorder programs. We propose to study the initial adaptation and adoption of virtual family-based treatment (vFBT) with the ultimate goal of improving access to services for youth with eating disorders. METHODS: We will use a multi-site case study with a mixed method pre/post design to examine the impact of our implementation approach across four pediatric eating disorder programs. We will develop implementation teams at each site (consisting of therapists, medical practitioners, and program administrators), provide a remote training workshop on vFBT, and offer ongoing consultation during the initial implementation phase. Therapists will submit videorecordings of their first four vFBT sessions. We propose to study our implementation approach by examining (1) whether the key components of standard FBT are maintained in virtual delivery measured by therapist self-report, (2) fidelity to our vFBT model measured by expert fidelity rating of submitted videorecordings of the first four sessions of vFBT, (3) team and patient/family experiences with vFBT assessed with qualitative interviews, and (4) patient outcomes measured by weight and binge/purge frequency reported by therapists. DISCUSSION: To our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate an implementation strategy for virtually delivered FBT for eating disorders. Challenges to date include confirming site participation and obtaining ethics approval at all locations. This research is imperative to inform the delivery of vFBT in the COVID-19 context. It also has implications for delivery in a post-pandemic era where virtual services may be preferable to patients and families living in remote locations, where access to specialized services is extremely limited. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04678843 , registered on December 21, 2020.

17.
Cochrane Database Syst Rev ; 3: CD013639, 2021 03 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1159778

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The respiratory illness caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection continues to present diagnostic challenges. Our 2020 edition of this review showed thoracic (chest) imaging to be sensitive and moderately specific in the diagnosis of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). In this update, we include new relevant studies, and have removed studies with case-control designs, and those not intended to be diagnostic test accuracy studies. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of thoracic imaging (computed tomography (CT), X-ray and ultrasound) in people with suspected COVID-19. SEARCH METHODS: We searched the COVID-19 Living Evidence Database from the University of Bern, the Cochrane COVID-19 Study Register, The Stephen B. Thacker CDC Library, and repositories of COVID-19 publications through to 30 September 2020. We did not apply any language restrictions. SELECTION CRITERIA: We included studies of all designs, except for case-control, that recruited participants of any age group suspected to have COVID-19 and that reported estimates of test accuracy or provided data from which we could compute estimates. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: The review authors independently and in duplicate screened articles, extracted data and assessed risk of bias and applicability concerns using the QUADAS-2 domain-list. We presented the results of estimated sensitivity and specificity using paired forest plots, and we summarised pooled estimates in tables. We used a bivariate meta-analysis model where appropriate. We presented the uncertainty of accuracy estimates using 95% confidence intervals (CIs). MAIN RESULTS: We included 51 studies with 19,775 participants suspected of having COVID-19, of whom 10,155 (51%) had a final diagnosis of COVID-19. Forty-seven studies evaluated one imaging modality each, and four studies evaluated two imaging modalities each. All studies used RT-PCR as the reference standard for the diagnosis of COVID-19, with 47 studies using only RT-PCR and four studies using a combination of RT-PCR and other criteria (such as clinical signs, imaging tests, positive contacts, and follow-up phone calls) as the reference standard. Studies were conducted in Europe (33), Asia (13), North America (3) and South America (2); including only adults (26), all ages (21), children only (1), adults over 70 years (1), and unclear (2); in inpatients (2), outpatients (32), and setting unclear (17). Risk of bias was high or unclear in thirty-two (63%) studies with respect to participant selection, 40 (78%) studies with respect to reference standard, 30 (59%) studies with respect to index test, and 24 (47%) studies with respect to participant flow. For chest CT (41 studies, 16,133 participants, 8110 (50%) cases), the sensitivity ranged from 56.3% to 100%, and specificity ranged from 25.4% to 97.4%. The pooled sensitivity of chest CT was 87.9% (95% CI 84.6 to 90.6) and the pooled specificity was 80.0% (95% CI 74.9 to 84.3). There was no statistical evidence indicating that reference standard conduct and definition for index test positivity were sources of heterogeneity for CT studies. Nine chest CT studies (2807 participants, 1139 (41%) cases) used the COVID-19 Reporting and Data System (CO-RADS) scoring system, which has five thresholds to define index test positivity. At a CO-RADS threshold of 5 (7 studies), the sensitivity ranged from 41.5% to 77.9% and the pooled sensitivity was 67.0% (95% CI 56.4 to 76.2); the specificity ranged from 83.5% to 96.2%; and the pooled specificity was 91.3% (95% CI 87.6 to 94.0). At a CO-RADS threshold of 4 (7 studies), the sensitivity ranged from 56.3% to 92.9% and the pooled sensitivity was 83.5% (95% CI 74.4 to 89.7); the specificity ranged from 77.2% to 90.4% and the pooled specificity was 83.6% (95% CI 80.5 to 86.4). For chest X-ray (9 studies, 3694 participants, 2111 (57%) cases) the sensitivity ranged from 51.9% to 94.4% and specificity ranged from 40.4% to 88.9%. The pooled sensitivity of chest X-ray was 80.6% (95% CI 69.1 to 88.6) and the pooled specificity was 71.5% (95% CI 59.8 to 80.8). For ultrasound of the lungs (5 studies, 446 participants, 211 (47%) cases) the sensitivity ranged from 68.2% to 96.8% and specificity ranged from 21.3% to 78.9%. The pooled sensitivity of ultrasound was 86.4% (95% CI 72.7 to 93.9) and the pooled specificity was 54.6% (95% CI 35.3 to 72.6). Based on an indirect comparison using all included studies, chest CT had a higher specificity than ultrasound. For indirect comparisons of chest CT and chest X-ray, or chest X-ray and ultrasound, the data did not show differences in specificity or sensitivity. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: Our findings indicate that chest CT is sensitive and moderately specific for the diagnosis of COVID-19. Chest X-ray is moderately sensitive and moderately specific for the diagnosis of COVID-19. Ultrasound is sensitive but not specific for the diagnosis of COVID-19. Thus, chest CT and ultrasound may have more utility for excluding COVID-19 than for differentiating SARS-CoV-2 infection from other causes of respiratory illness. Future diagnostic accuracy studies should pre-define positive imaging findings, include direct comparisons of the various modalities of interest in the same participant population, and implement improved reporting practices.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Radiography, Thoracic , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Ultrasonography , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Bias , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/standards , Child , Confidence Intervals , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Middle Aged , Radiography, Thoracic/standards , Radiography, Thoracic/statistics & numerical data , Reference Standards , Sensitivity and Specificity , Tomography, X-Ray Computed/standards , Tomography, X-Ray Computed/statistics & numerical data , Ultrasonography/standards , Ultrasonography/statistics & numerical data , Young Adult
18.
JMIR Hum Factors ; 8(1): e21312, 2021 Mar 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1159095

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Smart technology use in rehabilitation is growing and can be used remotely to assist clients in self-monitoring their performance. With written home exercise programs being the commonly prescribed form of rehabilitation after discharge, mobile health technology coupled with task-oriented programs can enhance self-management of upper extremity training. In the current study, a rehabilitation system, namely mRehab, was designed that included a smartphone app and 3D-printed household items such as mug, bowl, key, and doorknob embedded with a smartphone. The app interface allowed the user to select rehabilitation activities and receive feedback on the number of activity repetitions completed, time to complete each activity, and quality of movement. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to assess the usability, perceived usefulness, and acceptance of the mRehab system by individuals with stroke and identify the challenges experienced by them when using the system remotely in a home-based setting. METHODS: A mixed-methods approach was used with 11 individuals with chronic stroke. Following training, individuals with stroke used the mRehab system for 6 weeks at home. Each participant completed surveys and engaged in a semistructured interview. Participants' qualitative reports regarding the usability of mRehab were integrated with their survey reports and quantitative performance data. RESULTS: Of the 11 participants, 10 rated the mRehab system between the 67.5th and 97.5th percentile on the System Usability Scale, indicating their satisfaction with the usability of the system. Participants also provided high ratings of perceived usefulness (mean 5.8, SD 0.9) and perceived ease of use (mean 5.3, SD 1.5) on a 7-point scale based on the Technology Acceptance Model. Common themes reported by participants showed a positive response to mRehab with some suggestions for improvements. Participants reported an interest in activities they perceived to be adequately challenging. Some participants indicated a need for customizing the feedback to be more interpretable. Overall, most participants indicated that they would like to continue using the mRehab system at home. CONCLUSIONS: Assessing usability in the lived environment over a prolonged duration of time is essential to identify the match between the system and users' needs and preferences. While mRehab was well accepted, further customization is desired for a better fit with the end users. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04363944; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04363944.

19.
JMIR Ment Health ; 8(3): e26589, 2021 Mar 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1160624

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Antidepressants are known to show heterogeneous effects across individuals and conditions, posing challenges to understanding their efficacy in mental health treatment. Social media platforms enable individuals to share their day-to-day concerns with others and thereby can function as unobtrusive, large-scale, and naturalistic data sources to study the longitudinal behavior of individuals taking antidepressants. OBJECTIVE: We aim to understand the side effects of antidepressants from naturalistic expressions of individuals on social media. METHODS: On a large-scale Twitter data set of individuals who self-reported using antidepressants, a quasi-experimental study using unsupervised language analysis was conducted to extract keywords that distinguish individuals who improved and who did not improve following the use of antidepressants. The net data set consists of over 8 million Twitter posts made by over 300,000 users in a 4-year period between January 1, 2014, and February 15, 2018. RESULTS: Five major side effects of antidepressants were studied: sleep, weight, eating, pain, and sexual issues. Social media language revealed keywords related to these side effects. In particular, antidepressants were found to show a spectrum of effects from decrease to increase in each of these side effects. CONCLUSIONS: This work enhances the understanding of the side effects of antidepressants by identifying distinct linguistic markers in the longitudinal social media data of individuals showing the most and least improvement following the self-reported intake of antidepressants. One implication of this work concerns the potential of social media data as an effective means to support digital pharmacovigilance and digital therapeutics. These results can inform clinicians in tailoring their discussion and assessment of side effects and inform patients about what to potentially expect and what may or may not be within the realm of normal aftereffects of antidepressants.

20.
Int J Inf Manage ; 54: 102143, 2020 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1152381

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has created significant challenges for people worldwide. To combat the virus, one of the most dramatic measures was the lockdown of 4 billion people in what is believed to be the largest quasi-quarantine in human history. As a response to the call to study information behavior during a global health crisis, we adopted a resource orchestration perspective to investigate six Chinese families who survived the lockdown. We explored how elderly, young and middle-aged individuals and children resourced information and how they adapted their information behavior to emerging online technologies. Two information resource orchestration practices (information resourcing activities and information behavior adaptation activities) and three mechanisms (online emergence and convergence in community resilience, the overcoming of information flow impediments, and the application of absorptive capacity) were identified in the study.

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