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Vaccines ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 10 (1) ◽  
pp. 120
Michela Sabbatucci ◽  
Anna Odone ◽  
Carlo Signorelli ◽  
Andrea Siddu ◽  
Andrea Silenzi ◽  

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected national healthcare systems worldwide, with around 282 million cumulative confirmed cases reported in over 220 countries and territories as of the end of 2021. The Italian National Health System was heavily affected, with detrimental impacts on preventive service delivery. Routine vaccination services were disrupted across the country during the first months of the pandemic, and both access to and demand for vaccines have decreased during the pandemic. In many cases, parents preferred to postpone scheduled appointments for routine paediatric vaccinations because of stay-at-home orders or fear of COVID-19 infection when accessing care. The objective of the current study was to assess the routine childhood vaccine coverage (VC) rates during the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy. We compared 2020 and 2019 VC by age group and vaccine type. The Italian Ministry of Health collected anonymised and aggregated immunisation national data through the local health authorities (LHAs). Results were considered statistically significant at a two-tailed p-value ≤ 0.05. VC rates for mandatory vaccinations decreased in 2020 compared to 2019 (range of VC rate decrease: −1% to −2.7%), while chicken pox increased (+2.2%) in 7-year-old children. Recommended vaccinations were moderately affected (range of VC rate decrease in 2020 vs. 2019: −1.4% to −8.5%), with the exception of anti-HPV in males, Men ACWY, and anti-rotavirus vaccination (VC increase 2020 vs. 2019: +1.8%, +4.7% and +9.4%, respectively). In the COVID-19 era, the implementation of coherent, transparent, and effective communication campaigns and educational programs on safe childhood vaccinations, together with the increase in the number of healthcare staff employed, is essential to support strategies to reinforce vaccination confidence and behaviour, thus avoiding health threats due to VPD during and beyond COVID-19 times.

PLoS ONE ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 17 (1) ◽  
pp. e0262315
Christian Karagiannidis ◽  
Corinna Hentschker ◽  
Michael Westhoff ◽  
Steffen Weber-Carstens ◽  
Uwe Janssens ◽  

Background The role of non-invasive ventilation (NIV) in severe COVID-19 remains a matter of debate. Therefore, the utilization and outcome of NIV in COVID-19 in an unbiased cohort was determined. Aim The aim was to provide a detailed account of hospitalized COVID-19 patients requiring non-invasive ventilation during their hospital stay. Furthermore, differences of patients treated with NIV between the first and second wave are explored. Methods Confirmed COVID-19 cases of claims data of the Local Health Care Funds with non-invasive and/or invasive mechanical ventilation (MV) in the spring and autumn pandemic period in 2020 were comparable analysed. Results Nationwide cohort of 17.023 cases (median/IQR age 71/61–80 years, 64% male) 7235 (42.5%) patients primarily received IMV without NIV, 4469 (26.3%) patients received NIV without subsequent intubation, and 3472 (20.4%) patients had NIV failure (NIV-F), defined by subsequent endotracheal intubation. The proportion of patients who received invasive MV decreased from 75% to 37% during the second period. Accordingly, the proportion of patients with NIV exclusively increased from 9% to 30%, and those failing NIV increased from 9% to 23%. Median length of hospital stay decreased from 26 to 21 days, and duration of MV decreased from 11.9 to 7.3 days. The NIV failure rate decreased from 49% to 43%. Overall mortality increased from 51% versus 54%. Mortality was 44% with NIV-only, 54% with IMV and 66% with NIV-F with mortality rates steadily increasing from 62% in early NIV-F (day 1) to 72% in late NIV-F (>4 days). Conclusions Utilization of NIV rapidly increased during the autumn period, which was associated with a reduced duration of MV, but not with overall mortality. High NIV-F rates are associated with increased mortality, particularly in late NIV-F.

2022 ◽  
Vol 22 (1) ◽  
Thomas Beaney ◽  
Jonathan M. Clarke ◽  
Emily Grundy ◽  
Sophie Coronini-Cronberg

Abstract Background NHS hospitals do not have clearly defined geographic populations to whom they provide care, with patients able to attend any hospital. Identifying a core population for a hospital trust, particularly those in urban areas where there are multiple providers and high population churn, is essential to understanding local key health needs especially given the move to integrated care systems. This can enable effective planning and delivery of preventive interventions and community engagement, rather than simply treating those presenting to services. In this article we describe a practical method for identifying a hospital’s catchment population based on where potential patients are most likely to reside, and describe that population’s size, demographic and social profile, and the key health needs. Methods A 30% proportional flow method was used to identify a catchment population using an acute hospital trust in West London as an example. Records of all hospital attendances between 1st April 2017 and 31st March 2018 were analysed using Hospital Episode Statistics. Any Lower Layer Super Output Areas where 30% or more of residents who attended any hospital for care did so at the example trust were assigned to the catchment area. Publicly available local and national datasets were then applied to identify and describe the population’s key health needs. Results A catchment comprising 617,709 people, of an equal gender-split (50.4% male) and predominantly working age (15 to 64 years) population was identified. Thirty nine point six percent of residents identified as being from Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups, a similar proportion that reported being born abroad, with over 85 languages spoken. Health indicators were estimated, including: a healthy life expectancy difference of over twenty years; bowel cancer screening coverage of 48.8%; chlamydia diagnosis rates of 2,136 per 100,000; prevalence of visible dental decay among five-year-olds of 27.9%. Conclusions We define a blueprint by which a catchment can be defined for a hospital trust and demonstrate the value a hospital-view of the local population could provide in understanding local health needs and enabling population-level health improvement interventions. While an individual approach allows tailoring to local context and need, there could be an efficiency saving were such public health information made routinely and regularly available for every NHS hospital.

Monika Derrien ◽  
Toby Bloom ◽  
Stacy Duke

The USDA Forest Service has recently piloted health partnerships that facilitate therapeutic outdoor experiences on national forests, building on the growing evidence of the multiple health benefits of activities and time spent in nature. This article presents brief case studies of three pilot partnerships between national forests and health organizations in California, Indiana, and Georgia (USA). These partnerships deliver nature-based programming for the general public as well as those who are in recovery from major surgeries, have been diagnosed with cancer, and face chronic health challenges. To help recreation managers and policy makers understand the potential for such local health partnerships in a federal context, we describe the programs’ enabling conditions, their incorporation of service and stewardship activities, and the challenges and successes they have faced. Insights inform an expanding variety of health partnership models that advance the interconnectedness of human and ecosystem health on public lands as a fundamental dimension of sustainable recreation management.

2022 ◽  
Marvin So ◽  
Andrea Winquist ◽  
Shelby Fisher ◽  
Danice Eaton ◽  
Dianna Carroll ◽  

Abstract Background The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has administered the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) fellowship for over 50 years, with the goal of developing scientists and leaders in applied epidemiology. Our objective was to understand the extent to which CDC EIS alumni are present in select public health leadership roles. Methods We conducted an evaluation describing EIS alumni representation in five preselected leadership positions (CDC director [1953–2016]; CDC center director, state epidemiologist, Field Epidemiology Training Program [FETP] resident advisor, and Career Epidemiology Field Officer [CEFO] [2000–2016]). We developed a dataset using multiple sources to identify staff in selected positions. We then matched these data with an internal EIS alumni dataset. Results Selected positions were staffed by 353 persons, of which 185 (52%) were EIS alumni; 10 persons served in >1 leadership position, of which 6 were EIS alumni. Among 12 CDC directors, four (33%) were EIS alumni; collectively these alumni led CDC for approximately 25 years. EIS alumni accounted for 29 (58%) of 50 CDC center directors, 61 (35%) of 175 state epidemiologists, 27 (56%) of 48 Field Epidemiology Training Program resident advisors, and 70 (90%) of 78 Career Epidemiology Field Officers. Of 185 EIS alumni in leadership positions, 136 (74%) were physicians, 22 (12%) were scientists, 21 (11%) were veterinarians, 6 (3%) were nurses; 94 (51%) were assigned to a state or local health department. Among 61 EIS alumni who served as state epidemiologists, 40 (66%) were assigned to a state or local health department during EIS. Conclusions EIS alumni accounted for between approximately one-third (CDC directors and state epidemiologists) and 90% (CEFOs) of people serving in essential leadership positions at multiple levels.

Maria Piane ◽  
Lavinia Bianco ◽  
Rita Mancini ◽  
Paolo Fornelli ◽  
Angela Gabriele ◽  

Clinical pathways (CPs) are multidisciplinary clinical governance tools necessary for the care management of the patients, whose aim is to outline the best practicable path within a health organization related to an illness or to a complex clinical situation. The COVID-19 pandemic emergency has created the need for an organizational renewal of care pathways based on the principles of “primary health care” recommended by the WHO. In Italy, the Hospitals and Local Health Authorities (ASL) have tried to guarantee the continuity of non-deferrable treatments and the maximum safety of both patients and health professionals. This study analyzes the organizational and managerial responses adopted in pathology-specific care pathways to assess how CPs as diagnostic tools responded to the COVID-19 pandemic in the first two waves. Twenty-four referents of Operational Units (UU OO) from Hospitals (AO) and Local Health Authorities (ASL) of the Lazio Region (Central Italy) that apply four different CPs responded to a survey, which analyzes the managerial and organizational responses of CPs in regard to different contexts. Results show that the structural and organizational adjustments of the CPs have made it possible to maintain an adequate level of care for specific treatment processes, with some common critical aspects that require improvement actions. The adjustments found could be useful for dealing with new outbreaks and/or new epidemics in order to try to mitigate the potential negative impact, especially on the most vulnerable patient categories.

2022 ◽  
Vol 21 (1) ◽  
Monnaphat Jongdeepaisal ◽  
Soulixay Inthasone ◽  
Panarasri Khonputsa ◽  
Vilayvone Malaphone ◽  
Kulchada Pongsoipetch ◽  

Abstract Background Despite significant decline in malarial incidence and mortality in countries across the Greater Mekong Subregion, the disease remains a public health challenge in the region; transmission continues mainly among people who visit forests in remote areas, often along international borders, where access to primary healthcare is limited. In the absence of effective vector-control measures and limited exposure periods, malaria chemoprophylaxis has been proposed as a strategy to protect forest goers. As a rarely used approach for indigenous populations, questions remain about its feasibility and acceptability. Drawing on in-depth interviews with forest goers and stakeholders, this article examines opportunities and challenges for implementation of anti-malarial chemoprophylaxis for forest goers in Lao PDR. Methods In-depth interviews were conducted with 16 forest goers and 15 stakeholders in Savannakhet province, Lao PDR. Interview topics included experience of malaria prevention and health services, and perceptions of prophylaxis as a potential component of malaria elimination strategy. The interviews were transcribed and coded using inductive and deductive approaches for qualitative thematic analysis. Results In ethnically and geographically diverse villages, awareness of malaria risk prompts forest goers to protect themselves, albeit sub-optimally using available preventive measures. Stakeholders highlighted challenges for targeting at-risk populations and approaches to address forest malaria in southern Lao PDR. Among policymakers, choice and cost of anti-malarials, particularly their efficacy and source of funding, were key considerations for the feasibility of malaria prophylaxis. Acceptability of prophylaxis among forest goers was also influenced by the complexity of the regimen, including the number of tablets and timing of doses. Implementation of prophylaxis may be affected by a lack of transportation and communication barriers in remote communities. Conclusion Adding prophylaxis to existing malaria control activities requires strengthening the capacity of local health workers in Lao PDR. Ideally, this would be part of an integrated approach that includes strategies to address the other febrile illnesses that forest goers describe as priority health concerns. The prophylactic regimen also requires careful consideration in terms of effectiveness and simplicity of dosing.

2022 ◽  
Heidi Lyshol ◽  
Ana Paula Gil ◽  
Hanna Tolonen ◽  
Sónia Namorado ◽  
Irina Kislaya ◽  

Abstract BackgroundParticipation rates in health surveys, recognized as an important quality dimension, have been declining over the years, which may affect representativeness and confidence in results. The Portuguese national health examination survey INSEF (2015) achieved a participation rate of 43.9%, which is in line with participation rates from other similar health examination surveys. The objective of this article is to describe strategies used by the local teams to increase participation rates and to solve practical survey problems.MethodsAfter a literature search, informal interviews were conducted with 14 public health officials from local health examination teams, regional and central authorities. 41 of the local staff members also filled in a short questionnaire anonymously. The interviews and self-administered questionnaires were analysed using mixed methods, informed by thematic analysis.ResultsThe local teams believed that the detailed manual, described as a "cookbook for making a health examination survey", made it possible to maintain high scientific standards while allowing for improvising solutions to problems in the local context. The quality of the manual, supported by a series of training workshops with the central research and support team, gave the teams the confidence and knowledge to implement local solutions. Motivation and cohesion within the local teams were among the goals of the training process. Local teams felt empowered by being given large responsibilities and worked hard to incite people to attend the examination through a close and persuasive approach.Local teams praised their INSA contacts for being available for assistance throughout the survey, and said they were inspired to try harder to reach participants to please their contacts for interpersonal reasons.ConclusionsThe theory of organizational improvisation or bricolage, which means using limited resources to solve problems, was useful to discuss and understand what took place during INSEF.A detailed manual covering standard procedures, continuous monitoring of the data collection and face-to-face workshops, including role-play, were vital to assure high scientific standards and high participation rates in this health examination survey. Close contacts between the central team and local focal points in all regions and all survey sites were key to accommodating unexpected challenges and innovative solutions.

2022 ◽  
Vol 16 (1) ◽  
Agneta Kallström ◽  
Orwa Al-Abdulla ◽  
Jan Parkki ◽  
Mikko Häkkinen ◽  
Hannu Juusola ◽  

Abstract Background The Syrian conflict has endured for a decade, causing one of the most significant humanitarian crises since World War II. The conflict has inflicted massive damage to civil infrastructure, and not even the health care sector has been spared. On the contrary, health care has been targeted, and as a result, many health professionals have left the country. Despite the life-threatening condition, many health professionals continued to work inside Syria even in the middle of the acute crisis. This qualitative study aims to determine the factors that have motivated Syrian health professionals to work in a conflict-affected country. Methods The research is based on 20 semi-structured interviews of Syrian health care workers. Interviews were conducted in 2016–2017 in Gaziantep, Turkey. A thematic inductive content analysis examined the motivational factors Syrian health care workers expressed for their work in the conflict area. Results Motivating factors for health care workers were intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic reasons included humanitarian principles and medical ethics. Also, different ideological reasons, patriotic, political and religious, were mentioned. Economic and professional reasons were named as extrinsic reasons for continuing work in the war-torn country. Conclusions The study adds information on the effects of the Syrian crisis on health care—from healthcare workers' perspective. It provides a unique insight on motivations why health care workers are continuing their work in Syria. This research underlines that the health care system would collapse totally without local professionals and leave the population without adequate health care.

2022 ◽  
Vol 4 (2) ◽  
pp. 612-622
Indra Mahdi ◽  
Oka Agus Kurniawan Shavab ◽  
Empung Empung ◽  
Hendra Hendra ◽  
Albi Muhammad Fauzi ◽  

The objectives of this service activity are as follows: 1). Increase public understanding of the dangers of chikungunya mosquitoes and their solutions, 2). They were suppressing the spread of chikungunya mosquitoes through fogging and implementing the recommendations for the Eradication of Mosquito Nests (PSN) in the surrounding environment, 3). They are creating a drainage prototype to prevent chikungunya mosquito nests which can be used as examples for making the next prototype, 4). Increase community participation in suppressing chikungunya mosquito nests through the construction of drainage channels, 5). Improve a clean culture in maintaining the cleanliness of the drainage in the surrounding environment. The planned activities to be carried out are in collaboration with the local health center, and the Tasikmalaya city health office to reduce the number of chikungunya mosquito nests and, together with the community, build good drainage channels. The method of activity used is by bringing in experts from puskesmas, health offices, and unsil academics. Next, an approach is taken in solving problems through the 5W 1H strategy, which is solving problems from the questions: what, who, where, when, why, how. The solutions to the problems found in the field are as follows: 1). Provide a stimulus with the construction of a drainage system in accordance with the rules of the Public Works Department, 2). Cooperating with the Cigeureung Health Center by providing chemicals for fogging, 3). Counseling with the Health Center and the Tasikmalaya City Health Office regarding the dangers and solutions of diseases originating from chikungunya

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