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Lebanon, one of the smallest countries in the Middle East, has held for decades a reputation for being the premier medical hub for patients from the Arab world as well as neighboring countries and for offering world-class treatment and advanced medical services. However, this once world-renowned healthcare sector is now facing a risk of imminent collapse as overlapping crises have struck the country since October 2019. In this article, we describe the concomitant political, economic, and financial challenges that Lebanon is facing, which have strained the national healthcare system and have undermined its ability to respond to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. We present an overview of the political instability, the Lebanese revolution with countrywide protests, as well as the devaluation of the Lebanese currency representing one of the worst economic meltdowns since the 19th century. We describe the unprecedented energy crisis the country is facing and the disastrous consequences of the Beirut port explosion of August 2020. We review the efforts and measures taken by different stakeholders to contain the COVID-19 pandemic amid the multifaceted challenges and the large exodus of healthcare personnel.
To evaluate the dynamic changes of antibody levels in different groups after inoculation with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine. The 1493 subjects who were tested for IgM and IgG against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) at Qionglai Medical Center Hospital from June to October in 2021 were accepted for analyses of geometric mean titre (GMT) of IgG and IgM. The overall GMT of IgM and IgG in the population of Qionglai reached at a peak value at 1.497 (+3.810, −3.810) S/CO and 4.048 (+2.059, −2.059) S/CO in the second week, and then gradually decreased to 0.114 (+2.707, −2.707) and 1.885 (+1.506, −1.506) S/CO in the 11th–25th weeks, respectively. IgG was positive within 1 day, after that GMT increased continuously and peaked on the 13th day. There was a significant difference between male and female groups for titre of IgM during the prior 2 weeks and among three age groups for titre of IgG during the 2nd–3rd week after vaccination. The GMT level of IgG in the population vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine remained at a high level within 25 weeks and peaked on the 13th day, indicating that IgG could exist for a longer period and exhibiting positive SARS-CoV-2- defending effect.
Ethnic minorities with different languages and religions are potentially vulnerable not only during natural hazard-related disasters, but also during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Their vaccination coverage may be lower, and vaccination strategies should prevent them from being left behind. This report presents the first case in Japan where a mosque, being the hub of foreign Muslims, was used as a vaccination site from the end of July 2021. The targeted mosque was Ebina Mosque in Kanagawa Prefecture, and most of the vaccine recipients were foreign Muslims. The mosque differed from other vaccination sites in that reservations could be made easily through the managers, and linguistic diversity (i.e., the mosque managers and mosque-related volunteers served as interpreters) and gender were considered. These efforts are likely to have removed some barriers to vaccination for ethnic minorities and contributed to “no one will be left behind.”
This study aims to assess the contents of COVID-19 vaccine related videos available on iQiYi, which is a popular video website in mainland China.
The phrases “新型冠状病毒疫苗”(COVID-19 vaccine) and “新冠疫苗”(the abbreviation of “新型冠状病毒疫苗” according to Chinese habits), were searched separately on iQiYi on July 1, 2021. The 200 most popular videos of each search were screened. Video content and characteristics were identified, extracted and independently rated against Global Quality Scale (GQS), Health on the Net Foundation Code of Conduct (HONCode) and DISCERN principle by the 2 authors.
A total of 90 videos, with a total of 1165596 views, 14498 likes, and 1450 forwards as well as 95 comments at the time of data collection were included in the study. The channels, sources, topics, and formats of the videos were diversified. The majority of videos received high scores on GQS and all the videos partly adhere to HONCode and DISCERN principle.
Overall quality of information on iQiYi regarding COVID-19 vaccines remains good. However, existing evaluation tools cannot reflect the complexity of video websites. New and more effective tools or standards should be developed to help people understand the modern landscape of health communication better.
This study was performed to assess whether an intervention for critically appraising influenza vaccine exemption requests from healthcare personnel (HCP) affected (1) the overall rate of influenza vaccine exemption within a healthcare institution and/or (2) the rates of postintervention vaccine acceptance among those who inconsistently request exemption from annual vaccination and those who consistently request exemption from vaccination.
We conducted the study at a single academic medical center.
This study included 29,663 HCP.
Between 2010 and 2019, HCP were permitted to request an exemption from influenza vaccination without critical appraisal of exemption requests. After January 2019, medical center policy required critical appraisal of exemption requests. Of those employed 3 or more years who requested an exemption at least once during the preintervention period (n = 1,177), those with unchanging exemption reasons annually were termed “consistent exempters.” Those who changed reasons or accepted vaccination n ≥ 1 times were termed “inconsistent exempters.”
The overall exemption rate from influenza vaccine decreased from 3.8% to 1.2% (P < .001; N = 29,663) after the intervention. Of those requesting exemption at least once before the intervention, 329 (28.0%) of 1,177 were consistent exempters and 878 (72.0%) were inconsistent exempters. Of inconsistent exempters employed after the intervention, 442 (88.9%) of 497 accepted vaccine postintervention compared with 118 (59.6%) of 198 consistent exempters (P < .001). Of all exempters who changed from exemption to acceptance after the intervention, 442 (78.9%) of 560 were inconsistent exempters.
Critical appraisal of HCP exemption requests promotes influenza vaccine acceptance, and acceptance by inconsistent exempters drives the effect of the intervention. Analysis of changes in annual exemption requests represents a novel objective method for describing those on the spectrum of vaccine hesitancy.
In the present study, I explored the relationship between people's trust in different agents related to the prevention of the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and their compliance with pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical preventive measures. The COVIDiSTRESSII Global Survey dataset, which was collected from international samples, was analysed to examine the aforementioned relationship across different countries. For data-driven exploration, network analysis and Bayesian generalised linear model (GLM) analysis were performed. The result from network analysis demonstrated that trust in the scientific research community was most central in the network of trust and compliance. In addition, the outcome from Bayesian GLM analysis indicated that the same factor, trust in the scientific research community, was most fundamental in predicting participants' intent to comply with both pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical preventive measures. I briefly discussed the implications of the findings, the importance of trust in the scientific research community in explaining people's compliance with a measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Vaccines against HPV are highly efficacious in preventing infection and disease in the cervix, vulva, anus, oropharynx as well as the anogenital warts caused by HPV types included in the vaccine cocktail. The efficacy is optimal if vaccines are given in prepubertal girls and boys before coitarche, while it remains an individual choice for older women. Vaccination is efficacious in women who have been infected but cleared the infection, although the upper age of vaccination depends on cost-effectiveness and is country-specific. School-based gender-neutral vaccination optimizes coverage and herd immunity. Two doses suffice under the age of 15 with an interval of 6–12 months, while the standard three-dose regimen is recommended thereafter. Vaccine will modify screening strategies, possibly with longer screening intervals in vaccinated cohorts, but will not obviate them. Vaccination in low-resource setting is especially important as lack of infrastructure prevents screening, but affordability remains a major issue.
Vaccine hesitancy remains a serious global threat to achieve herd immunity, and this study aimed to assess the magnitude and associated factors of coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) vaccine hesitancy among healthcare workers (HCWs) in Amhara regional referral hospitals. A web-based anonymised survey was conducted among 440 HCWs in the Amhara region referral hospitals. The questionnaire was designed using Google Forms and distributed using telegram and e-mail from 15 May to 10 June 2021 to the randomly selected participants in each hospital. The data were analysed with Stata 14.0 and described using frequency tables. A multivariable binary logistic regression model was fitted and model fitness was checked with the Hosmer–Lemeshow goodness of fit test. Out of 440 participants, 418 were willing to participate in the study and the mean age was about 30 years. Overall, 45.9% (n = 192) of participants reported vaccine hesitancy. After applying multivariate analysis, age ≤25 years (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 5.6); do not wear a mask (aOR = 2.4); not compliance with physical distancing (aOR = 3.6); unclear information by public health authorities (aOR = 2.5); low risk of getting COVID-19 infection (aOR = 2.8); and not sure about the tolerability of the vaccine (aOR = 3.76) were associated with COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. A considerable proportion of HCWs were hesitant towards COVID-19 vaccine, and this can be tackled with the provision of clear information about the vaccine.
The aim of this study was to investigate the opinions of different groups of people in Iran on their willingness to receive a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine.
In this cross-sectional study, we surveyed a sample (based on consecutive referrals) of 5 groups of people in late 2020: a group of the general population from Shiraz (without a history of any chronic medical or psychiatric problems), patients with epilepsy, patients with diabetes mellitus (DM), patients with cardiac problems, and patients with psychiatric problems. The survey included 4 general questions and 3 COVID-19–specific questions.
A total of 582 people participated. In total, 66 (11.3%) people expressed that they were not willing to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Psychiatric disorders (odds ratio [OR]: 3.15; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.31-7.60; P = 0.006) and male sex (OR: 2.10; 95% CI: 1.23-3.58; P = 0.010) were significantly associated with COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.
Vaccine hesitancy is a global issue. Patients with psychiatric disorders had the highest rate of vaccine hesitancy. Previous studies have shown that depression and anxiety are associated with a reduced adherence to the recommended medical advice. Why male sex is associated with vaccine hesitancy is not clear. Researchers should investigate the rates and the factors affecting the vaccine hesitancy in their corresponding communities.
Poultry red mites (Dermanyssus gallinae, PRM) are dangerous ectoparasites that infest chickens and threaten the poultry industry worldwide. PRMs usually develop resistance to chemical acaricides, necessitating the development of more effective preventive agents, and vaccination could be an alternative strategy for controlling PRMs. The suitability of plasma membrane proteins expressed in the midguts as vaccine antigens was evaluated because these molecules are exposed to antibodies in the ingested blood and the binding of antibodies could potentially induce direct damage to midgut tissue and indirect damage via inhibition of the functions of target molecules. Therefore, in the present study, a copper transporter 1-like molecule (Dg-Ctr1) was identified and its efficacy as a vaccine antigen was assessed in vitro. Dg-Ctr1 mRNA was expressed in the midguts and ovaries and in all the life stages, and flow cytometric analysis indicated that Dg-Ctr1 was expressed on the plasma membrane. Importantly, nymphs fed on plasma derived from chickens immunized with the recombinant protein of the extracellular region of Dg-Ctr1 showed a significant reduction in the survival rate. These data indicate that the application of Dg-Ctr1 as a vaccine antigen could reduce the number of nymphs in the farms, contributing to reduction in the economic losses caused by PRMs in the poultry industry. To establish an effective vaccination strategy, the acaricidal effects of the combined use of Dg-Ctr1 with chemical acaricides or other vaccine antigens must be examined.
Acceptance and willingness to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine are unknown.
We compared attitudes toward COVID-19 vaccination in people suffering from depression or anxiety disorder and people without mental disorders, and their willingness to pay for it.
Adults with depression or anxiety disorder (n = 79) and healthy controls (n = 134) living in Chongqing, China, completed a cross-sectional study between 13 and 26 January 2021. We used a validated survey to assess eight aspects related to attitudes toward the COVID-19 vaccines. Psychiatric symptoms were assessed by the 21-item Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale.
Seventy-six people with depression or anxiety disorder (96.2%) and 134 healthy controls (100%) reported willingness to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. A significantly higher proportion of people with depression or anxiety disorder (64.5%) were more willing to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine than healthy controls (38.1%) (P ≤ 0.001). After multivariate adjustment, severity of depression and anxiety was significantly associated with willingness to pay for COVID-19 vaccination among psychiatric patients (P = 0.048). Non-healthcare workers (P = 0.039), health insurance (P = 0.003), living with children (P = 0.006) and internalised stigma (P = 0.002) were significant factors associated with willingness to pay for COVID-19 vaccine in healthy controls.
To conclude, psychiatric patients in Chongqing, China, showed high acceptance and willingness to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine. Factors associated with willingness to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine differed between psychiatric patients and healthy controls.
Two adolescent males presented within 3 days after the first and second dose of the BNT162b2 vaccine with chest pain. Elevated troponin levels, ST segment elevation, and enhancement of the myocardium in cardiac MRI suggested myocarditis. Left ventricular function remained normal, symptoms resolved, and patients were discharged in 4 days. BNT162b2 vaccine may be associated with self-limited myocarditis in youth.
I calibrate an eco-epidemiological age-structured Susceptible-Infected-Recovered (SIR) model of the B.1.1.7 covid variant on the eve of the vaccination campaign in France, under a stop-and-go lockdown policy. Three-quarters of the welfare benefit of the vaccine can be achieved with a speed of 100,000 full vaccination per day. A 1-week delay in the vaccination campaign raises the death toll by approximately 2500, and it reduces wealth by 8 billion euros. Because of the large heterogeneity of the rates of hospitalization and mortality across age classes, it is critically important for the number of lives saved and for the economy to vaccinate older people first. Any departure from this policy has a welfare cost. Prioritizing the allocation of vaccines to the most vulnerable people save 70,000 seniors, but it also increases the death toll of younger people by 14,000. Vaccine nationalism is modeled by assuming two identical Frances, one with a vaccine production capacity and the other without it. If the production country vaccinates its entire population before exporting to the other, the global death toll would be increased by 20 %. I also measure the welfare impact of the strong French anti-vax movement, and of the prohibition of an immunity passport.
The aim of this study was to test the appearance of negative dominance in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine-related information and activity online. We hypothesized that if negative dominance appeared, it would be a reflection of peaks in adverse events related to the vaccine, that negative content would attract more engagement on social media than other vaccine-related posts, and posts referencing adverse events related to COVID-19 vaccination would have a higher average toxicity score.
We collected data using Google Trends for search behavior, CrowdTangle for social media data, and Media Cloud for media stories, and compared them against the dates of key adverse events related to COVID-19. We used Communalytic to analyze the toxicity of social media posts by platform and topic.
While our first hypothesis was partially supported, with peaks in search behavior for image and YouTube videos driven by adverse events, we did not find negative dominance in other types of searches or patterns of attention by news media or on social media.
We did not find evidence in our data to prove the negative dominance of adverse events related to COVID-19 vaccination on social media. Future studies should corroborate these findings and, if consistent, focus on explaining why this may be the case.
Trichuriasis known as whipworm infection caused by Trichuris trichiura, is a highly prevalent soil-transmitted helminthiasis in low- and middle-income countries located in tropical and subtropical areas and affecting approximately 360 million people. Children typically harbour the largest burden of T. trichiura and they are usually co-infected with other soil-transmitted helminth (STH), including Ascaris lumbricoides and hookworm. The consequences of trichuriasis, such as malnutrition and physical and cognitive growth restriction, lead to a massive health burden in endemic regions. Despite the implementation of mass drug administration of anthelminthic treatment to school-age children, T. trichiura infection remains challenging to control due to the low efficacy of current drugs as well as high rates of post-treatment re-infection. Thus, the development of a vaccine that would induce protective immunity and reduce infection rate or community faecal egg output is essential. Hurdles for human whipworm vaccine development include the lack of suitable vaccine antigen targets and animal models for human T. trichiura infection. Instead, rodent whipworm T. muris infected mouse models serve as a major surrogate for testing immunogenicity and efficacy of vaccine candidates. In this review, we summarize recent advances in animal models for T. trichiura antigen discovery and testing of vaccine candidates, while providing an overall view of the current status of T. trichiura vaccine development.
Influenza vaccine effectiveness (VE) wanes over the course of a temperate climate winter season but little data are available from tropical countries with year-round influenza virus activity. In Singapore, a retrospective cohort study of adults vaccinated from 2013 to 2017 was conducted. Influenza vaccine failure was defined as hospital admission with polymerase chain reaction-confirmed influenza infection 2–49 weeks after vaccination. Relative VE was calculated by splitting the follow-up period into 8-week episodes (Lexis expansion) and the odds of influenza infection in the first 8-week period after vaccination (weeks 2–9) compared with subsequent 8-week periods using multivariable logistic regression adjusting for patient factors and influenza virus activity. Records of 19 298 influenza vaccinations were analysed with 617 (3.2%) influenza infections. Relative VE was stable for the first 26 weeks post-vaccination, but then declined for all three influenza types/subtypes to 69% at weeks 42–49 (95% confidence interval (CI) 52–92%, P = 0.011). VE declined fastest in older adults, in individuals with chronic pulmonary disease and in those who had been previously vaccinated within the last 2 years. Vaccine failure was significantly associated with a change in recommended vaccine strains between vaccination and observation period (adjusted odds ratio 1.26, 95% CI 1.06–1.50, P = 0.010).
Vaccination has reduced the disease burden of vaccine-preventable diseases. However, the extent to which seasonal cycles of immunity could influence vaccine-induced immunity is not well understood. A national cross-sectional serosurveillance study performed in the Netherlands (Pienter-2) yielded data to investigate whether season of vaccination was associated with antibody responses induced by DT-IPV (diphtheria, tetanus and poliomyelitis), MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) and meningococcus C (MenC) vaccines in children. In total, 434 children met the inclusion criteria to study DT-IPV immunity, 811 for MMR and 311 for MenC. Differences in log(antibody levels) by season of vaccination were investigated with linear multivariable regression analyses. Seroconversion rates varied according to season of vaccination for rubella (90% of autumn-vaccinated children vs. 99% of winter-vaccinated had concentrations above cut-off levels). Summer-vaccinated boys showed a slower decline of tetanus antibodies (6% per month), in comparison with winter-vaccinated boys. In conclusion, season of vaccination showed little association with immunological protection. However, a number of associations were seen with a P-value of about 0.03; and adding data from a just-completed nationwide serological study might add more power to the current study. Further immunological and longitudinal investigations could help understand the mechanisms of seasonal influence in vaccine-induced responses.
This article explores the tensions between well-intentioned humanitarianism and coercive colonialism during smallpox outbreaks in eighteenth-century Guatemala, when the state extended inoculation programmes to its predominant, culturally diverse Maya communities. Evidence from anti-epidemic campaigns shows public debates broadly comparable to the current COVID-19 crisis: debates about the measurably higher mortality rates for indigenous people and other marginalized groups; debates about the extent of the state’s responsibility for the health of its peoples; and debates on whether or not coercion and violence should be used to ensure compliance with quarantines and public health campaigns. While inoculations provided medical assistance and material help to Maya communities, and resulted in demonstrably lower mortality rates from smallpox, at the same time they functioned as avenues for the expansion of colonial power to intervene in the daily lives of people in those communities, characterized by colonial actors as necessary for their own good, and for the broader public good.
Human cysticercosis is a public health problem caused by Taenia solium metacestodes; thus, eradication of T. solium transmission by vaccination is an urgent requirement. The Cc48 mimotope from T. solium cysticerci was tested expressed in phage particles (mCc48) and chemically synthesized (sCc48) as a vaccine candidate in experimental murine cysticercosis. For this, BALB/c mice were immunized with mCc48 (G1; n = 40), sCc48 (G2; n = 40) and phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) (G3; n = 40, positive control) and challenged with Taenia crassiceps metacestodes. Another PBS group without parasite challenge was used as a negative control (G4; n = 40). Mice were sacrificed 15, 30, 45 and 60 days post-infection for cysticerci and serum collection. Immunization efficacy was determined by cysticerci counting. Serum samples were tested by ELISA to verify antibody (IgM, IgG, IgA and IgE) and cytokine (IFNγ and IL-4) levels. The sCc48 achieved the highest rates of protection and efficacy (90 and 98%, respectively). The group immunized with mCc48 presented the highest reactivity for IgM, IgG and IgE. All groups presented IL-4, but IFNγ was quite variable among groups. The protection induced by sCc48 synthetic peptide supports further studies of this mimotope as a potential vaccine candidate against cysticercosis.