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1.
Telemed J E Health ; 27(12): 1355-1362, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574147

ABSTRACT

Introduction: In this study, we aimed to detect anxiety levels of the physicians during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and to assess the knowledge, perspective, and willingness of the physicians about telemedicine. Materials and Methods: This was a survey study of physicians from different specialties who provided patient care during the pandemic in Turkey. A total of 824 physicians responded to questionnaire, which consisted of 5 sections: (1) demographic characteristics; (2) anxiety level; (3) knowledge; (4) perspective; and (5) willingness to use telemedicine. Results: Fifty-six percent of the participants were found to experience mild-to-severe anxiety during the pandemic. It was found that the early career physicians most likely report anxiety about COVID-19 (p = 0.012). Physicians working in training and research hospital settings had higher Beck Anxiety Inventory scores compared to their colleagues working in private health care institutions (p = 0.011). Anxiety levels of physicians were not affected by working experience, existence of comorbidities, or living conditions of the participants (p = 0.138, p = 0.317, and p = 0.123, respectively). The results showed that the participants had a low level of knowledge about telemedicine. Only 61.1% of the physicians stated that they had heard of telemedicine before. The physicians who experienced telemedicine before (N = 76, 9.2% of all the participants) were more likely to find telemedicine beneficial both in pandemic (p < 0.001) and postpandemic period (p = 0.002). Conclusions: About half of our physicians had different levels of anxiety during the pandemic, and this anxiety seemed to be more related to infecting their relatives. Participants thought that providing health care services with telemedicine during the pandemic period would be beneficial and reduce the spread of hospital-acquired COVID-19. However, there was no consensus among the participants regarding the use of telemedicine in the postpandemic period.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Physicians , Telemedicine , Humans , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
2.
Am J Speech Lang Pathol ; 30(2): 740-747, 2021 03 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1545668

ABSTRACT

Purpose Youth with cochlear implants (CIs) are at risk for delays in verbal short-term memory (STM)/working memory (WM), which adversely affect language, neurocognitive, and behavioral outcomes. Assessment of verbal STM/WM is critical for identifying and addressing these delays, but standard assessment procedures require face-to-face (FTF) administration. The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility and validity of remote testing methods (teleassessment) of verbal STM/WM in youth with CIs as a method of addressing COVID-19-related restrictions on FTF test administration. Method Tests of verbal STM/WM for nonwords, digit spans, letter-number sequences, sentences, and stories were individually administered by speech-language pathologists over a teleassessment platform to 28 youth (aged 9-22 years) with CIs and 36 same-aged normal-hearing peers. Examiners, parents, and participants completed quality and satisfaction ratings with the teleassessment procedure. Teleassessment scores were compared to results of tests obtained at FTF visits an average of 1.6 years earlier. Results Quality and satisfaction ratings for teleassessment were high and in almost all cases did not differ between the CI and normal-hearing samples. Youth with CIs scored lower than normal-hearing peers on measures of verbal STM/WM, and scores for digit span and letter-number sequencing did not differbetween teleassessment and FTF methods. Correlations across teleassessment and FTF visits were strong for digit span, letter-number sequencing, and sentence memory, but were more modest for nonword repetition. Conclusion With some caveats, teleassessment of verbal STM/WM was feasible and valid for youth with CIs.


Subject(s)
Cochlear Implants/psychology , Memory, Short-Term , Speech Perception , Speech-Language Pathology/methods , Telemedicine/methods , Adolescent , COVID-19/epidemiology , Case-Control Studies , Child , Cochlear Implants/adverse effects , Feasibility Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
3.
Med Pr ; 72(3): 321-325, 2021 Jun 30.
Article in Polish | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1413233

ABSTRACT

In 2019, COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, evolved into a pandemic which is still going on. The basic clinical symptoms of the SARS-CoV-2 infection are: fever, dry cough, fatigue, muscle pain, respiratory problems, and the loss of smell or taste. Other symptoms, including those related to hearing and balance organs (hearing loss, tinnitus, dizziness), are reported less frequently by patients. They are especially rarely reported as the first symptoms of this infection. In order to answer the question of whether SARS-CoV-2 can cause hearing and balance damage, the authors reviewed the literature sources from 2019-2020 included in EMBASE and PubMed, entering the following words: "hearing loss," "COVID-19," "coronavirus," "sensorineural hearing loss," "vertigo," and "dizziness." Ultimately, 9 studies on the possible relationship between hearing impairment and SARS-CoV-2, and 4 studies on the possible relationship between damage to the balance and SARS-CoV-2, were qualified for the study. The results of the analysis suggest a possible relationship between COVID-19 and hearing loss, with no evidence of a similar relationship between this virus and the balance system. The possible existence of such a relationship should be especially remembered by hospital emergency room doctors, otolaryngologists and audiologists, especially as regards the possibility of a sudden sensironeural hearing loss as the first symptom of COVID-19. This also applies to doctors of other specialties. The authors indicate the need for further, intensive and multifaceted research on this issue. Med Pr. 2021;72(3):321-5.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Hearing Disorders/etiology , Hearing , Postural Balance , Vestibular Diseases/etiology , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Female , Hearing Loss/etiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Tinnitus/etiology , Vertigo/etiology , Young Adult
4.
World Dev ; 136: 105122, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1301039

ABSTRACT

Responses to the COVID-19 pandemic may leave many people behind through a variety of exclusion processes as basic information about the virus and its spread is shared with the public. We conduct a rapid virtual audit of pandemic related press briefings and press conferences issued by governments and international organizations in order to assess if responses have been inclusive to the hearing-impaired communities in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). We analyze COVID-19 press conferences and press briefings issued during Feb-May 2020, for over 123 LMICs and for international organizations (e.g. the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Health Organization (WHO)). Our virtual audit shows that only 65% of countries have a sign language interpreter (SLI) present in COVID-19 press briefings and conferences. This number is smaller in low-income countries (41%) and Sub-Saharan African countries (54%). Surprisingly, none of the international organizations including the WHO has a SLI present during COVID-19 press briefings. We recommend all countries and international organizations to reconsider ways to make press conferences accessible to a wide audience in general, and to the hearing impaired communities in particular by including a SLI during their COVID-19 briefings, a primary step towards upholding the sustainable development pledge of "no one gets left behind."

5.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 165(1): 163-165, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1295296

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic resulted in widespread unprecedented changes to the health care system. Herein, we sought to assess the impact of the viral outbreak on clinical presentations of sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) at a single academic center. Our results demonstrate a decrease in the absolute number of patients presenting with SSNHL to our institution during the initial onset of the COVID-19 pandemic compared to an analogous time frame 1 year prior. However, the ratio of patients with SSNHL compared to total patients evaluated was largely similar during the 2 time periods. Based on data from our institution, the COVID-19 virus does not appear to confer a significantly increased risk for the development of SSNHL.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hearing Loss, Sensorineural/epidemiology , Hearing Loss, Sudden/epidemiology , Humans , Retrospective Studies
6.
Ear Hear ; 42(4): 772-781, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1280144

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to assess the speech recognition in noise when using a transparent mask that allows greater visibility of the talker's face compared to an opaque mask in persons with normal and impaired hearing via an online format. DESIGN: A repeated-measures design was used to evaluate the auditory-visual recognition of sentences recorded in background noise with transparent and opaque face masks, and without a mask (N = 154). In a smaller follow-up study (N = 29), the same files were presented via auditory-only presentation to determine if differences observed in the transparent and opaque mask conditions were attributable to additional visual cues or to acoustic differences between the recordings of the two mask types. Listeners completed the 40-minute online session on a computer, laptop, or tablet in a quiet room via their personal listening devices (earbuds or hearing assistive device). The adult volunteers who used English as their first language were recruited through social media links and email and categorized into three groups: normal hearing and confirmed or suspected hearing loss either with or without the use of assistive listening devices. RESULTS: Auditory-visual recognition of sentences recorded with the transparent mask was significantly better (M = 68.9%) than for sentences recorded with the opaque mask (M = 58.9%) for all participants. There was a trend for those who used hearing assistive technology to score lower than the other two groups who had similar performance across all conditions regardless of the mask type. Subjective ratings of confidence and concentration followed the expected pattern based on objective scores. Results of the auditory-only presentation of the sentences to listeners with normal hearing suggested that the transparent mask benefits were not attributable to an acoustic advantage but rather to the addition of the visual cues of the talker's face available through the transparent mask. In fact, performance in the auditory-only presentation was significantly lower with the transparent mask (M = 40.7%) compared to the opaque mask (M = 58.2%). CONCLUSIONS: Use of transparent masks can significantly facilitate speech recognition in noise even for persons with normal hearing and thus may reduce stressful communication challenges experienced in medical, employment, and educational settings during the global pandemic. To mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and facilitate communication, safety-approved transparent masks are strongly encouraged over opaque masks.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communication , Masks , Speech Perception , Adult , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Telemed J E Health ; 28(3): 334-343, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1240874

ABSTRACT

Objective: To investigate the integration of and barriers to the utilization of telehealth technology and its components (telemedicine, e-Health, m-health) in daily otolaryngologic practice before the SARS CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted at a tertiary academic center. A national survey of members of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery was administered. Descriptive analyses were performed to determine how telehealth was employed in otolaryngologists' practices. Results: A total of 184 surveys were completed. Telehealth technology was used by 50% of otolaryngologists surveyed. Regions with the largest percentage of physicians using telehealth were the Mid-Atlantic region (84%) and West Coast (67%). Most otolaryngologists indicated that they were familiar with telehealth or any of its components and how it is used in practice (52-83%), they had heard of telehealth or any of its components but were unsure what the terms specifically entailed (17-42%); 53% were satisfied with their current use of telehealth and electronic medical record (EMR); and 72% were comfortable utilizing smart devices for patient care. Most otolaryngologists (65%) indicated reimbursement as the biggest limitation to implementing telehealth, and 67% believed that typing was a hindrance to EMR utility. Conclusion: Half of the surveyed otolaryngologists used some form of telehealth at the time of the survey. The most commonly cited obstacle to physician adoption of telehealth was reimbursement. Although the adoption of telehealth technology was still limited in the field of otolaryngology based on this study, we are now seeing significant change due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Otolaryngology , Telemedicine , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Pandemics , United States
8.
Exp Clin Transplant ; 19(7): 717-722, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1218702

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to assess awareness toward eye donation and the effects of COVID-19 on perceptions about eye donation in an urban community of West Bengal, India. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Eligible adults residing in the area under study were chosen by simple random sampling and interviewed using a predesigned and pretested data collection schedule to assess awareness and perception. Based on their total awareness score, the participants were classified as having good awareness or poor awareness toward eye donation. RESULTS: Among 423 participants, 52.0% were male, 34.0% were 18 to 30 years old, 38.3% were educated up to secondary level, and 85.6% had eye disease in their family. Of total participants, 70.2% had heard about eye donation, with 59.9% of this group having knowledge of eye donation only after death and 57.9% having knowledge that donation must occur within 6 hours of death. In addition, 52.9% were aware about donation from home, 30.6% said only the cornea is transplantable, and 52.2% knew it can be preserved. Participants with higher education, higher socioeconomic status, and outside of the house occupational engagement had significantly higher chance of good eye donation awareness. Of total participants, 32.0% said that COVID-19 could be transmitted through eye donation, with 58.2% of participants opining that the pandemic was not a suitable time to consider donation of eyes. CONCLUSIONS: COVID-19 has had a negative impact on eye donation perceptions. Although most of our participants had heard about eye donation, their awareness regarding important aspects about eye donation were still lacking, thus calling for a more focused action plan and implementation of the same.


Subject(s)
Attitude to Health , COVID-19 , Eye/transplantation , Tissue and Organ Procurement , Adolescent , Adult , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , India , Male , Middle Aged , Young Adult
9.
Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol ; 146: 110754, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1213280

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The current study aimed to investigate possible association of maternal SARS-CoV-2 with newborn hearing loss. We compared hearing screening outcomes in neonates born to women with positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test results during pregnancy with healthy controls. METHODS: Neonates born between April and December 2020 in our hospital to mothers with positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test results during pregnancy were included in this study. Neonates with risk factors for universal newborn hearing screening (NHS) were excluded. Neonates born to mothers with positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test results during pregnancy were compared with healthy controls in terms of newborn hearing screening results and independent variables. RESULTS: Neonates in the COVID-19 group were more likely to have a "refer" result in auditory brainstem responses (ABR) compared with the control group (53/118 and 28/118, respectively; p = 0.001). The second ABR test results did not differ significantly between the groups (p = 0.618). Logistic regression revealed that birth week and type of birth were not associated with the "refer" result. PCR positivity in the second trimester was more likely to produce the "refer" result in the first ABR test (p = 0.014). CONCLUSION: SARS-CoV-2 PCR positivity in pregnancy is significantly associated with an increased risk of abnormal NHS results. Also, the timing of PCR positivity in pregnancy (trimester) may be related to abnormal NHS results.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hearing Disorders/diagnosis , Hearing Tests , Neonatal Screening , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious , Evoked Potentials, Auditory, Brain Stem , Female , Hearing Disorders/virology , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical , Pregnancy , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/virology , Pregnancy Outcome , Pregnant Women , SARS-CoV-2
10.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(4): e216857, 2021 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1192058

ABSTRACT

Importance: The COVID-19 pandemic has brought forth new challenges for health care workers, such as the daily use of personal protective equipment, including reusable facial respirators. Poor communication while wearing respirators may have fatal complications for patients, and no solution has been proposed to date. Objective: To examine whether use of an in-ear communication device is associated with improved communication while wearing different personal protective equipment (N95 mask, half-face elastomeric respirator, and powered air-purifying respirator [PAPR]) in the operating room. Design, Setting, and Participants: This quality improvement study was conducted in June 2020. Surgical residents from the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, were recruited. All participants had normal hearing, were fluent in English, and had access to the operating rooms at the Royal Victoria Hospital. Exposures: All participants performed the speech intelligibility tasks with and without an in-ear communication device. Main Outcomes and Measures: Speech intelligibility was measured using a word recognition task (Modified Rhyme Test) and a sentence recognition task (AzBio Sentence Test). A percentage correct score (0% to 100%) was obtained for each speech intelligibility test. Listening effort was assessed using the NASA Task Load Index. An overall workload score, ranging from 0 points (low workload) to 100 points (high workload), was obtained. Results: A total of 12 participants were included (mean [SD] age, 31.2 [1.9] years; 8 women [66.7%]). AzBio Sentence Test results revealed that, while wearing the N95 mask, the mean (SD) speech intelligibility was 98.8% (1.8%) without the in-ear device vs 94.3% (7.4%) with the device. While wearing the half-face elastomeric respirator, the mean speech intelligibility was 58.5% (12.4%) without the in-ear device vs 90.8% (8.9%) with the device. While wearing the PAPR, the mean speech intelligibility was 84.6% (9.8%) without the in-ear device vs 94.5% (5.5%) with the device. Use of the in-ear device was associated with a significant improvement in speech intelligibility while wearing the half-face elastomeric respirator (32.3%; 95% CI, 23.8%-40.7%; P < .001) and the PAPR (9.9%; 95% CI, 1.4%-18.3%; P = .01). Furthermore, use of the device was associated with decreased listening effort. The NASA Task Load Index results reveal that, while wearing the N95 mask, the mean (SD) overall workload score was 12.6 (10.6) points without the in-ear device vs 17.6 (9.2) points with the device. While wearing the half-face elastomeric respirator, the mean overall workload score was 67.7 (21.6) points without the in-ear device vs 29.3 (14.4) points with the in-ear device. While wearing the PAPR, the mean overall workload score was 42.2 (18.2) points without the in-ear device vs 23.8 (12.8) points with the in-ear device. Use of the in-ear device was associated with a significant decrease in overall workload score while wearing the half-face elastomeric respirator (38.4; 95% CI, 23.5-53.3; P < .001) and the PAPR (18.4; 95% CI, 0.4-36.4; P = .04). Conclusions and Relevance: This study found that among participants using facial respirators that impaired communication, a novel in-ear device was associated with improved communication and decreased listening effort. Such a device may be a feasible solution for protecting health care workers in the operating room while allowing them to communicate safely, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communication , Hearing Aids/standards , Hearing , N95 Respirators/adverse effects , N95 Respirators/standards , Operating Rooms , Respiratory Protective Devices/adverse effects , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Canada , Female , Health Personnel , Humans , Infection Control/instrumentation , Male , Operating Rooms/organization & administration , Operating Rooms/standards , Quality Improvement , SARS-CoV-2 , Simulation Training , Speech Discrimination Tests/methods
11.
Public Health ; 194: 86-88, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1185224

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Both the political appetite for a science-based coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) policy and its acceptability to the public are little understood, at a time of sharp distrust not only of governments but also of scientists and their journals' review practices. We studied the case of France, where the independent Scientific Council on COVID-19 was appointed by President Macron on March 12, 2020. STUDY DESIGN: We conducted a survey on a representative sample of the French adult population. METHODS: Our data were collected by the French Institute of Public Opinion using a self-administered online questionnaire. This was completed by a sample of 1016 people stratified to match French official census statistics for gender, age, occupation, and so on. We conducted statistical analysis using Python (Pandas-SciPy-Statsmodels) with Chi-squared and Wilcoxon rank-sum tests to control for statistical significance. RESULTS: Intense media coverage has given the council a very high public profile, with three respondents out of four (73%) having heard about it. Perceptions are positive but complex. French citizens expect science to be important in political decision-making. Four of five (81.5%) want political decisions, in general, to be based on scientific knowledge. But one in two (55%) says that the government has not relied enough on science and only 36% are satisfied with the government's crisis management to date. Although most feel that the council has a legitimate advisory role even in situations of uncertainty (only 15% disagree), it is not perceived as fully independent. Only 44% think that it directly represents the scientific community, and only one of three people considers it completely independent from the government (39%) and the pharmaceutical industry (36%). CONCLUSIONS: Our study confirms that while the transparency of scientific advice is important, it alone cannot ensure public confidence in political decision-making. We suggest that efforts made today to instill a 'science-savvy' public culture-one that allows the complex articulation between scientific knowledge, uncertainty, and political decision-making to be understood and accounted for would greatly benefit evidence-based policy in future crises.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Public Opinion , Public Policy , Science , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communications Media , Female , France/epidemiology , Government , Humans , Male , Surveys and Questionnaires
12.
Med Pr ; 72(3): 321-325, 2021 Jun 30.
Article in Polish | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1175785

ABSTRACT

In 2019, COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, evolved into a pandemic which is still going on. The basic clinical symptoms of the SARS-CoV-2 infection are: fever, dry cough, fatigue, muscle pain, respiratory problems, and the loss of smell or taste. Other symptoms, including those related to hearing and balance organs (hearing loss, tinnitus, dizziness), are reported less frequently by patients. They are especially rarely reported as the first symptoms of this infection. In order to answer the question of whether SARS-CoV-2 can cause hearing and balance damage, the authors reviewed the literature sources from 2019-2020 included in EMBASE and PubMed, entering the following words: "hearing loss," "COVID-19," "coronavirus," "sensorineural hearing loss," "vertigo," and "dizziness." Ultimately, 9 studies on the possible relationship between hearing impairment and SARS-CoV-2, and 4 studies on the possible relationship between damage to the balance and SARS-CoV-2, were qualified for the study. The results of the analysis suggest a possible relationship between COVID-19 and hearing loss, with no evidence of a similar relationship between this virus and the balance system. The possible existence of such a relationship should be especially remembered by hospital emergency room doctors, otolaryngologists and audiologists, especially as regards the possibility of a sudden sensironeural hearing loss as the first symptom of COVID-19. This also applies to doctors of other specialties. The authors indicate the need for further, intensive and multifaceted research on this issue. Med Pr. 2021;72(3):321-5.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Hearing Disorders/etiology , Hearing , Postural Balance , Vestibular Diseases/etiology , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Female , Hearing Loss/etiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Tinnitus/etiology , Vertigo/etiology , Young Adult
13.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 42(5): 102996, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1163308

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) is commonly encountered in otolaryngologic practice. SARS-CoV-2 infection is typically marked by respiratory symptoms although neurologic manifestations of the disease have also been described. OBJECTIVE: We want to measure the incidence and clinical aspects of persons exhibiting in otolaryngology clinic (OC) with SSNHL during the COVID-19 widespread and in the constant interval of previous year. METHODS: We retrospectively inspected the medical information for admissions to OC in Eskisehir, Turkey, during the COVID-19 widespread to describe the patients SSNHL. Clinical knowledge was saved for each subject and corresponded with that of SSNHL subjects demonstrating in 2019. RESULT: Between 1 April and 30 September 2020, 68 patients admitted to OC for SSNHL; in 2019, there were 41 subjects, for an incidence rate ratio of 8.5 per 100.000 (95% CI 1.02-2.92) for the 2020 cohort. Of the 2020 group, forty-one patients (60.3%) presented with active or recent symptoms consistent with COVID-19 infection, compared with four (9.8%) in 2019 (p < 0.001). Furthermore, subjects in 2020 group were younger (-15.5 years, p = 0.0141) than 2019 group and demonstrated prolonged interim (+1.7 days, p < 0.001) between SSNHL initiation and OC petition. CONCLUSION: We detected increased incidence of SSNHL during the COVID-19 widespread compared to the same interval of the prior year; 60.3% of subjects confronting with SSNHL had signs that were harmonious with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Hearing Loss, Sensorineural/epidemiology , Hearing Loss, Sudden/epidemiology , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Hearing Loss, Sensorineural/diagnosis , Hearing Loss, Sensorineural/virology , Hearing Loss, Sudden/diagnosis , Hearing Loss, Sudden/virology , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , Turkey
14.
J Acoust Soc Am ; 149(3): 1796, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1159104

ABSTRACT

While studies of urban acoustics are typically restricted to the audio range, anthropogenic activity also generates infrasound (<20 Hz, roughly at the lower end of the range of human hearing). Shutdowns related to the COVID-19 pandemic unintentionally created ideal conditions for the study of urban infrasound and low frequency audio (20-500 Hz), as closures reduced human-generated ambient noise, while natural signals remained relatively unaffected. An array of infrasound sensors deployed in Las Vegas, NV, provides data for a case study in monitoring human activity during the pandemic through urban acoustics. The array records a sharp decline in acoustic power following the temporary shutdown of businesses deemed nonessential by the state of Nevada. This decline varies spatially across the array, with stations close to McCarran International Airport generally recording the greatest declines in acoustic power. Further, declines in acoustic power fluctuate with the time of day. As only signals associated with anthropogenic activity are expected to decline, this gives a rough indication of periodicities in urban acoustics throughout Las Vegas. The results of this study reflect the city's response to the pandemic and suggest spatiotemporal trends in acoustics outside of shutdowns.


Subject(s)
Acoustics/instrumentation , COVID-19/prevention & control , Environmental Monitoring , Human Activities , Cities , Communicable Disease Control , Environmental Monitoring/instrumentation , Environmental Monitoring/methods , Humans , Nevada , Noise , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
15.
PeerJ ; 9: e11153, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1154802

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The introduction of the COVID-19 vaccine necessitates the assessment of individual perception regarding the vaccine. This study aimed to assess the perception of community members and willingness to pay for the prospective COVID-19 vaccine in Ibadan, Nigeria. METHODS: A descriptive cross-sectional study design was used. Data were collected using an interviewer-administered questionnaire in September 2020. We studied community members aged 15 years and above using a multi-stage sampling technique. The perceptions of respondents about the COVID-19 vaccine were assessed on eight questions using the five-point Likert scale with a score point of "1" assigned for "Strongly Agree", "2" for "Agree", "3" for "Not decided", "4" for "Disagree", and "5" for "Strongly disagree". During analysis, we reverse-coded the options by assigning a point of "1" for "Strongly disagree", "2" for "Disagree", "3" for "Not decided", "4" for "Agree", and "5" for "Strongly disagree". However, questions asked in the negative directions were not reverse-coded during analysis. Eight questions were used to assess the perception of community members regarding the prospective COVID-19 vaccine, and overall, the maximum point was 40. Points greater than or equal to 32 points (80%) implied positive perception. Descriptive statistics were done. Chi-square tests were used for the assessment of associations between sociodemographic characteristics and willingness to pay for the prospective COVID-19 vaccine. We conducted logistic regression tests on statistically significant variables at p-values <0.05. RESULTS: The mean age of the 440 respondents studied was 37.22 ± 15.36 years, 193 (49.00%) were males, and 292 (67.30%) of the respondents had heard of the prospective COVID-19 vaccine. Among them, 232 (79.50%) respondents had positive perception regarding COVID-19 vaccine. Individuals in the fifth wealth quintile were ten times more likely to be willing to pay for the prospective COVID-19 vaccine compared to those in the first wealth quintile (Adjusted Odds Ratio = 9.57, 95% CI [2.88-31.82], p = <0.01). CONCLUSION: The prospective COVID-19 vaccine should be subsidized or made freely available to everyone.

16.
Indian J Community Med ; 46(1): 11-14, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1143677

ABSTRACT

Difficulties of the hearing impaired have increased due to COVID-19, leading to lack of inclusiveness along with the breakdown of their mental, physical, and social health. The study objective was to assess the challenges faced by the deaf and hearing-impaired people during COVID-19 by a literature review. Literature search was done using keywords such as "challenges" OR "barriers" and "COVID-19" OR "Deaf" OR "Hearing Impaired" OR "Communication" on PubMed and Google Scholar from November 2019 to June 2020. The challenges faced were lack of information, face mask making communication difficult, social distancing affecting their physical, mental health, stigma and barriers related to the health-care system. Strategies included use of technology, help from sign language instructors, and preparedness of health-care settings for the hearing disabled. System strengthening, tele-medicine, and policy amendments can be the pillars to build up the support system for the hearing impaired to protect them from COVID-19.

19.
Int J Audiol ; 61(2): 97-101, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1132306

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether hearing difficulties exacerbate the damaging effects of enforced social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic on isolation and loneliness, and lead to accelerated mental health issues and cognitive dysfunction. DESIGN: Rapid online survey. Participants completed a series of online questionnaires regarding hearing ability, socialisation (pre- and during-pandemic), loneliness, anxiety, depression and cognitive function. STUDY SAMPLE: A total of 80 participants over the age of 70 with access to the internet. RESULTS: There was a significant reduction in socialisation levels from pre-pandemic in this population. Hearing difficulties were significantly associated with greater levels of loneliness, depression and self-perceived cognitive dysfunction after controlling for age, gender, and level of education. Additionally, compared to pre-pandemic, people with hearing difficulties had increased odds of reporting worsened anxiety, depression, and memory during the COVID-19 pandemic, although only the effect of hearing difficulties on the change in memory reached statistical significance after controlling for age, gender, and level of education. CONCLUSIONS: The worse the self-reported hearing abilities are, the greater the negative impact of enforced social distancing on depression, loneliness and cognitive function.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cognitive Dysfunction , Depression/diagnosis , Depression/epidemiology , Hearing , Humans , Loneliness , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Self Report
20.
Clin Case Rep ; 9(4): 2300-2304, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1130471

ABSTRACT

We encourage SARS-CoV-2 polymerase chain reaction in the diagnostic workup of patients currently presenting with sudden sensorineural hearing loss.

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