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1.
World Medical & Health Policy ; 15(2):209-211, 2023.
Article in English | Academic Search Complete | ID: covidwho-20244817

ABSTRACT

This 654-page tome might be the most comprehensive look to date at how various governments - nearly 40 in all - have sought to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic during its first 10 months, from December 2019 to September 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has been associated with an immense growth in scientific literature, with more than 700,000 scientists publishing well over 300,000 items related to COVID-19 by the summer of 2021. Time and time again, from place to place, the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated that extensive public health expertise from an advisory agency meant relatively little if such counsel was discounted by politicians and public health agencies lacking their own decision-making powers. [Extracted from the article] Copyright of World Medical & Health Policy is the property of Wiley-Blackwell and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full . (Copyright applies to all s.)

2.
Health Policy Plan ; 2022 Oct 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2287004

ABSTRACT

In recent years, the literature on public health interventions and health outcomes in the context of epidemic and pandemic response has grown immensely. However, relatively few of these studies have situated their findings within the institutional, political, organizational, and governmental (IPOG) context in which interventions and outcomes exist. This conceptual mapping scoping study synthesized the published literature on the impact of IPOG factors on epidemic and pandemic response and critically examined definitions and uses of the terms IPOG in this literature. This research involved a comprehensive search of four databases across the social, health, and biomedical sciences as well as multi-level eligibility screening conducted by two independent reviewers. Data on the temporal, geographic, and topical range of studies were extracted, then descriptive statistics were calculated to summarize these data. Hybrid inductive and deductive qualitative analysis of the full-text articles was conducted to critically analyze the definitions and uses of these terms in the literature. The searches retrieved 4,918 distinct articles; 65 met the inclusion criteria and were thus reviewed. These articles were published from 2004 to 2022, were mostly written about COVID-19 (61.5%), and most frequently engaged with the concept of governance (36.9%) in relation to epidemic and pandemic response. Emergent themes related to the variable use of the investigated terms, the significant increase in relevant literature published amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a lack of consistent definitions used across all four terms: institutions, politics, organizations, and governance. This study revealed opportunities for health systems researchers to further engage in interdisciplinary work with fields such as law and political science, to become more forthright in defining factors which shape responses to epidemics and pandemics, and to develop greater consistency in using these IPOG terms in order to lessen confusion among a rapidly growing body of literature.

3.
Health Res Policy Syst ; 20(1): 74, 2022 Jun 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1896355

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Research on public health responses to COVID-19 globally has largely focused on understanding the virus' epidemiology, identifying interventions to curb transmission, and assessing the impact of interventions on outcomes. Only recently have studies begun to situate their findings within the institutional, political, or organizational contexts of jurisdictions. Within British Columbia (BC), Canada, the COVID-19 response in early 2020 was deemed highly coordinated and effective overall; however, little is understood as to how these upstream factors influenced policy decisions. METHODS: Using a conceptual framework we developed, we are conducting a multidisciplinary jurisdictional case study to explore the influence of institutional (I), political (P), organizational (O), and governance (G) factors on BC's COVID-19 public health response in 2020-2021. A document review (e.g. policy documents, media reports) is being used to (1) characterize relevant institutional and political factors in BC, (2) identify key policy decisions in BC's epidemic progression, (3) create an organizational map of BC's public health system structure, and (4) identify key informants for interviews. Quantitative data (e.g. COVID-19 case, hospitalization, death counts) from publicly accessible sources will be used to construct BC's epidemic curve. Key informant interviews (n = 15-20) will explore governance processes in the COVID-19 response and triangulate data from prior procedures. Qualitative data will be analysed using a hybrid deductive-inductive coding approach and framework analysis. By integrating all of the data streams, our aim is to explore decision-making processes, identify how IPOG factors influenced policy decisions, and underscore implications for decision-making in public health crises in the BC context and elsewhere. Knowledge users within the jurisdiction will be consulted to construct recommendations for future planning and preparedness. DISCUSSION: As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, governments have initiated retrospective examinations of their policies to identify lessons learned. Our conceptual framework articulates how interrelations between IPOG contextual factors might be applied to such analysis. Through this jurisdictional case study, we aim to contribute findings to strengthen governmental responses and improve preparedness for future health crises. This protocol can be adapted to and applied in other jurisdictions, across subnational jurisdictions, and internationally.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , British Columbia , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Politics , Retrospective Studies
5.
J Chem Inf Model ; 61(9): 4656-4669, 2021 09 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1370715

ABSTRACT

Even with the availability of vaccines, therapeutic options for COVID-19 still remain highly desirable, especially in hospitalized patients with moderate or severe disease. Soluble ACE2 (sACE2) is a promising therapeutic candidate that neutralizes SARS CoV-2 infection by acting as a decoy. Using computational mutagenesis, we designed a number of sACE2 derivatives carrying three to four mutations. The top-predicted sACE2 decoy based on the in silico mutagenesis scan was subjected to molecular dynamics and free-energy calculations for further validation. After illuminating the mechanism of increased binding for our designed sACE2 derivative, the design was verified experimentally by flow cytometry and BLI-binding experiments. The computationally designed sACE2 decoy (ACE2-FFWF) bound the receptor-binding domain of SARS-CoV-2 tightly with low nanomolar affinity and ninefold affinity enhancement over the wild type. Furthermore, cell surface expression was slightly greater than wild-type ACE2, suggesting that the design is well-folded and stable. Having an arsenal of high-affinity sACE2 derivatives will help to buffer against the emergence of SARS CoV-2 variants. Here, we show that computational methods have become sufficiently accurate for the design of therapeutics for current and future viral pandemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
6.
NPJ Digit Med ; 4(1): 49, 2021 Mar 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1132107

ABSTRACT

Contact tracing is increasingly used to combat COVID-19, and digital implementations are now being deployed, many based on Apple and Google's Exposure Notification System. These systems utilize non-traditional smartphone-based technology, presenting challenges in understanding possible outcomes. In this work, we create individual-based models of three Washington state counties to explore how digital exposure notifications combined with other non-pharmaceutical interventions influence COVID-19 disease spread under various adoption, compliance, and mobility scenarios. In a model with 15% participation, we found that exposure notification could reduce infections and deaths by approximately 8% and 6% and could effectively complement traditional contact tracing. We believe this can provide health authorities in Washington state and beyond with guidance on how exposure notification can complement traditional interventions to suppress the spread of COVID-19.

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