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Most-download articles are from the articles published in 2020 during the last three month.

Review Article
COVID-19 Outbreak in Malaysia
Asita Elengoe
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2020;11(3):93-100.   Published online June 1, 2020
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2020.11.3.08
  • 65,535 View
  • 3,772 Download
  • 62 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF

In 2020 a significant threat to public health emerged. The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) epidemic outbreak emerged in December 2019 from Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and spread to the rest of the world. This disease was named COVID-19 by World Health Organization. To date (17th April 2020) a total of 2,230,439 cases of COVID-19; 150,810 cases of deaths and 564,210 recovered cases have been reported worldwide. In this review the SARS-CoV-2 morphology, pathogenic mechanism, similarities and differences between SARS-CoV and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and severe acute respiratory syndrome, transmission mode, diagnosis, treatment, and preventive measures were investigated. The outbreak of COVID-19 from a Malaysian perspective was explored and mental health care during the COVID-19 outbreak was explored. To date, there is no vaccine or no specific treatment for COVID-19. Therefore, preventive measures are very important to prevent and control the rapid spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Preparedness should be a priority for future pandemic outbreaks.

Original Articles
Clinical epidemiological applicability of real-time polymerase chain reaction for COVID-19
Geehyuk Kim, Jun-Kyu Kang, Jungho Kim, Jiyoung Lee, Jin Gwack
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):252-262.   Published online July 27, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0135
  • 1,048 View
  • 96 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Real-time polymerase chain reaction is currently used as a confirmatory test for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The test results are interpreted as positive, negative, or inconclusive, and are used only for a qualitative classification of patients. However, the test results can be quantitated using threshold count (Ct) values to determine the amount of virus present in the sample. Therefore, this study investigated the diagnostic usefulness of Ct results through various quantitative analyzes, along with an analysis of clinical and epidemiological characteristics.
Methods
Clinical and epidemiological data from 4,642 COVID-19 patients in April 2021 were analyzed, including the Ct values of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp), envelope (E), and nucleocapsid (N) genes. Clinical and epidemiological data (sex, age, underlying diseases, and early symptoms) were collected through a structured questionnaire. A correlation analysis was used to examine the relationships between variables.
Results
All 3 genes showed statistically significant relationships with symptoms and severity levels. The Ct values of the RdRp gene decreased as the severity of the patients increased. Moreover, statistical significance was observed for the presence of underlying diseases and dyspnea.
Conclusion
Ct values were found to be related to patients’ clinical and epidemiological characteristics. In particular, since these factors are closely related to symptoms and severity, Ct values can be used as primary data for predicting patients’ disease prognosis despite the limitations of this method. Conducting follow-up studies to validate this approach might enable using the data from this study to establish policies for preventing COVID-19 infection and spread.
Characteristics of COVID-19 outbreaks and risk factors for transmission at an army training center in South Korea from June to August 2021
U Jin Cho, Seongjin Wang, Seonju Yi, Yeon Hwa Choi, Eun-Young Kim, Jin A Kim, Sanghwan Bae, Jungyeon Yu, Jangkyu Choi, Young-Joon Park
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):263-272.   Published online July 27, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0149
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
It is crucial to establish the characteristics of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreaks at army training centers to develop preventive measures. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the COVID-19 transmission patterns and risk factors in a sequence of outbreaks at an army training center from June to August 2021.
Methods
This study included 1,324 trainees at an army training center where outbreaks occurred from June to August 2021. The outbreak was qualitatively analyzed according to the period, attack rate, demographic characteristics, vaccination history, and living areas. An aerodynamic experiment was performed to evaluate aerosol transmission in living areas.
Results
Three outbreaks occurred at the army training center from June to August 2021. The first, second, and third outbreaks lasted for 32, 17, and 24 days, and the attack rates were 12.8%, 18.1%, and 8.9%, respectively. Confirmed cases were distributed in all age groups. Recruits and the unvaccinated were at higher risk for COVID-19. The aerodynamic experiment verified the possibility of aerosol transmission within the same living area.
Conclusion
COVID-19 transmission at army training centers should be minimized through quarantine and post-admission testing during the latency period as part of integrated measures that include facility ventilation, vaccination, indoor mask-wearing, and social distancing.
Brief Report
Isolation and identification of monkeypox virus MPXV-ROK-P1-2022 from the first case in the Republic of Korea
Jin-Won Kim, Minji Lee, Hwachul Shin, Chi-Hwan Choi, Myung-Min Choi, Jee Woong Kim, Hwajung Yi, Cheon-Kwon Yoo, Gi-Eun Rhie
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):308-311.   Published online August 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0232
  • 592 View
  • 44 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Monkeypox outbreaks in nonendemic countries have been reported since early May 2022. The first case of monkeypox in the Republic of Korea was confirmed in a patient who traveled to Europe in June 2022, and an attempt was made to isolate and identify the monkeypox virus (MPXV) from the patient’s specimens.
Methods
Clinical specimens from the patient were inoculated in Vero E6 cells. The isolated virus was identified as MPXV by the observation of cytopathic effects on Vero E6 cells, transmission electron microscopy, conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and sequencing of PCR products.
Results
Cytopathic effects were observed in Vero E6 cells that were inoculated with skin lesion swab eluates. After multiple passages from the primary culture, orthopoxvirus morphology was observed using transmission electron microscopy. In addition, both MPXV-specific (F3L and ATI) and orthopoxvirus-specific genes (A39R, B2R, and HA) were confirmed by conventional PCR and Sanger sequencing.
Conclusion
These results indicate the successful isolation and identification of MPXV from the first patient in the Republic of Korea. The isolated virus was named MPXV-ROK-P1-2022.
Original Articles
Insufficient weight management in pregnant women with gestational diabetes mellitus
Kyunghee Han, Dong Wook Kwak, Hyun Mee Ryu, Hyun-Young Park
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):242-251.   Published online August 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0182
  • 422 View
  • 36 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
This study investigated whether weight was managed appropriately in pregnant women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and examined the association between insufficient gestational weight gain (GWG) and adverse pregnancy outcomes.
Methods
The study included 235 pregnant women with GDM from the Korean Pregnancy Outcome Study. GWG from the second to the third trimester (kg/wk) and total GWG (kg) were classified as insufficient, appropriate, or excessive according to the 2009 Institute of Medicine guidelines. Adverse pregnancy outcomes included maternal (hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, preterm birth, cesarean delivery, and delivery complications) and infant (low birth weight, high birth weight, neonatal intensive care unit admission, and congenital anomalies) outcomes.
Results
The proportion of pregnant women with GDM who had insufficient GWG from the second to the third trimester was 52.3%, and that of participants with total insufficient GWG was 48.1%. There were no significant associations between insufficient GWG from the second to the third trimester and adverse pregnancy outcomes. Participants with total insufficient GWG had a significantly lower risk of preterm birth (odds ratio [OR], 0.17; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.05–0.60) and high birth weight (OR, 0.23; 95% CI, 0.07–0.80).
Conclusion
Our findings suggest the importance of appropriate weight management and the need for GWG guidelines for pregnant women with GDM.
Changes in the pattern and disease burden of acute respiratory viral infections before and during the COVID-19 pandemic
Chungmin Park, Donghan Lee, Bryan Inho Kim, Sujin Park, Gyehee Lee, Sangwoo Tak
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(3):203-211.   Published online June 30, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0144
  • 1,721 View
  • 115 Download
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
We conducted a comparative analysis of the differences in the incidence of 8 acute respiratory viruses and the changes in their patterns before and during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Methods: Three sentinel surveillance systems of the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency and data from the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service were analyzed. The average numbers of reported cases and the related hospital admissions and outpatient data were compared between April 2018–2019 and 2020–2021. Changes in the disease burden and medical expenditures between these 2 time periods were evaluated. Results: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of reported cases of all acute respiratory viral infections, except for human bocavirus, decreased significantly. Data from the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service also showed decreases in the actual amount of medical service usage and a marked reduction in medical expenditures. Conclusion: Non-pharmacological interventions in response to COVID-19 showed preventive effects on the transmission of other respiratory viruses, as well as COVID-19. Although COVID-19 had a tremendous impact on society as a whole, with high social costs, there were also positive effects, such as a reduction in the incidence of acute respiratory viral infections.
Review Article
Effect of clofibrate on reducing neonatal jaundice: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Fatemeh Eghbalian, Lotfollah Karimi, Roya Raeisi, Ayda Hasanpour Dehkordi, Hamid Bouraghi
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(3):174-183.   Published online June 30, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0336
  • 736 View
  • 64 Download
AbstractAbstract PDF
In neonates, bilirubin tends to be deposited in body tissues, especially the skin and mucous membranes. Jaundice is an early symptom of bilirubin excretion disorders. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effect of clofibrate on reducing neonatal jaundice. In this systematic review, international databases, including PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, Embase, Cochrane, and Google Scholar, were searched without time and language restrictions. The reference lists of all studies ultimately included were manually searched. In the 17 articles reviewed, with a sample size of 665 people published between 2005 and 2019, the average weight of the neonates varied from 2,186 g to 4,000 g. Furthermore, the average age of neonates varied from 2 days to 9 days. Four doses of clofibrate (25, 30, 50, 100 mg/kg of neonatal body weight) were used. The bilirubin level of neonates significantly decreased in the intervention group 24, 36, 48, and 72 hours after the start of treatment. Clofibrate administration decreased total serum bilirubin, especially from the second day onwards, and also reduced hospitalization time, hospital costs, and side effects from hospitalization.
Original Article
Identification of Coronavirus Isolated from a Patient in Korea with COVID-19
Jeong-Min Kim, Yoon-Seok Chung, Hye Jun Jo, Nam-Joo Lee, Mi Seon Kim, Sang Hee Woo, Sehee Park, Jee Woong Kim, Heui Man Kim, Myung-Guk Han
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2020;11(1):3-7.   Published online February 28, 2020
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2020.11.1.02
  • 41,385 View
  • 1,203 Download
  • 267 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives

Following reports of patients with unexplained pneumonia at the end of December 2019 in Wuhan, China, the causative agent was identified as coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), and the 2019 novel coronavirus disease was named COVID-19 by the World Health Organization. Putative patients with COVID-19 have been identified in South Korea, and attempts have been made to isolate the pathogen from these patients.

Methods

Upper and lower respiratory tract secretion samples from putative patients with COVID-19 were inoculated onto cells to isolate the virus. Full genome sequencing and electron microscopy were used to identify the virus.

Results

The virus replicated in Vero cells and cytopathic effects were observed. Full genome sequencing showed that the virus genome exhibited sequence homology of more than 99.9% with SARS-CoV-2 which was isolated from patients from other countries, for instance China. Sequence homology of SARS-CoV-2 with SARS-CoV, and MERS-CoV was 77.5% and 50%, respectively. Coronavirus-specific morphology was observed by electron microscopy in virus-infected Vero cells.

Conclusion

SARS-CoV-2 was isolated from putative patients with unexplained pneumonia and intermittent coughing and fever. The isolated virus was named BetaCoV/Korea/KCDC03/2020.

Brief Report
Safety monitoring of COVID-19 vaccination among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years old in the Republic of Korea
Seontae Kim, Insob Hwang, Mijeong Ko, Yunhyung Kwon, Yeon-Kyeng Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(3):230-237.   Published online June 10, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0122
  • 1,193 View
  • 72 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
This study aimed to disseminate information on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine safety among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years in the Republic of Korea. Methods: Two databases were used to assess COVID-19 vaccine safety in adolescents aged 12 to 17 years who completed the primary Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination series. Adverse events reported to the web-based COVID-19 vaccination management system (CVMS) and collected in the text message-based system were analyzed. Results: From March 5, 2021 to February 13, 2022, 12,216 adverse events among 12- to 17-yearolds were reported to the CVMS, of which 97.1% were non-serious adverse events and 2.9% were serious adverse events, including 85 suspected cases of anaphylaxis, 74 suspected cases of myocarditis and/or pericarditis, and 2 deaths. From December 13, 2021 to January 26, 2022, 10,389 adolescents responded to a text message survey, and local/systemic adverse events were more common after dose 2 than after dose 1. The most commonly reported events following either vaccine dose were pain at the injection site, headache, fatigue/tiredness, and myalgia. Conclusion: The overall results are consistent with previous findings; the great majority of adverse events were non-serious, and serious adverse events were rare among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years following Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination.
Original Articles
Seroprevalence of immunoglobulin G antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in children and adolescents in Delhi, India, from January to October 2021: a repeated cross-sectional analysis
Pragya Sharma, Saurav Basu, Suruchi Mishra, Mongjam Meghachandra Singh
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(3):184-190.   Published online June 10, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0014
  • 1,932 View
  • 55 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
The aim of this study was to assess changes in the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) immunoglobulin G (IgG) seroprevalence among children and adolescents in Delhi, India from January 2021 to October 2021. Methods: This was a repeated cross-sectional analysis of participants aged 5 to 17 years from 2 SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence surveys conducted in Delhi, India during January 2021 and September to October 2021. Anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies were detected by using the VITROS assay (90% sensitivity, 100% specificity). Results: The seroprevalence among 5- to 17-year-old school-age children and adolescents increased from 52.8% (95% confidence interval [CI], 51.3%−54.3%) in January 2021 to 81.8% (95% CI, 80.9%−82.6%) in September to October 2021. The assay-adjusted seroprevalence was 90.8% (95% CI, 89.8%−91.7%). Seropositivity positively correlated with participants’ age (p<0.001), but not sex (p=0.388). A signal to cut-off ratio ≥4.00, correlating with the presence of neutralization antibodies, was observed in 4,814 (57.9%) participants. Conclusion: The high percentage of seroconversion among children and adolescents indicates the presence of natural infection-induced immunity from past exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. However, the lack of hybrid immunity and the concomitant likelihood of lower levels of neutralization antibodies than in adults due to the absence of vaccination warrants careful monitoring and surveillance of infection risk and disease severity from newer and emergent variants.
Menstrual hygiene management and its determinants among adolescent girls in low-income urban areas of Delhi, India: a community-based study
Suneela Garg, Nidhi Bhatnagar, Mongjam Meghachandra Singh, Saurav Basu, Amod Borle, Yamini Marimuthu, Falak Azmi, Yomri Dabi, Indu Bala
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):273-281.   Published online August 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0127
  • 392 View
  • 21 Download
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) in developing countries is linked to human rights, social justice, and the education and empowerment of young girls. The objective of this study was to assess menstrual hygiene practices and their determinants among adolescent girls, including school dropouts, and the effects of pad distribution programs in urban resettlement areas of Delhi, India.
Methods
A cross-sectional study was conducted from March 2019 to February 2020 in urban resettlement colonies and 2 villages of Delhi among 1,130 adolescent girls aged 10 to 19 years, who were interviewed face to face.
Results
In total, 954 participants (84.4%) used only disposable sanitary pads, 150 (13.3%) used both sanitary pads and cloths, and 26 (2.3%) used only cloths (n=1,130). Most school-going girls utilized the scheme for pad distribution, but only two-thirds of the girls who were out of school utilized the scheme. In the adjusted analysis, girls with lower educational status, those who had dropped out of school, and those from the Muslim religious community were more likely to use cloths for MHM.
Conclusion
More than 4 out of 5 adolescent girls in Delhi in low-income neighborhoods preferred sanitary pads for MHM. The government free pad scheme reached near-universal utilization among school-going girls (97%), but the subsidized pad scheme for girls who did not attend school was insufficiently utilized (75%).
Editorial
The neglected issues of global health security that we should prepare for in our society
Jong-Koo Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(3):171-173.   Published online June 30, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0185
  • 749 View
  • 44 Download
PDF
Original Article
Factors influencing acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine in Malaysia: a web-based survey
June Fei Wen Lau, Yuan Liang Woon, Chin Tho Leong, Hoon Shien Teh
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2021;12(6):361-373.   Published online November 25, 2021
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0085
  • 7,125 View
  • 407 Download
  • 5 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Objectives
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has set a precedent for the fastest-produced vaccine as a result of global collaboration and outreach. This study explored Malaysians’ acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine and its associated factors.
Methods
A cross-sectional anonymous web-based survey was disseminated to Malaysian adults aged ≥18 years old via social media platforms between July 10, 2020 and August 31, 2020.
Results
In the analysis of 4,164 complete responses, 93.2% of participants indicated that they would accept the COVID-19 vaccine if it was offered for free by the Malaysian government. The median out-of-pocket cost that participants were willing to pay for a COVID-19 vaccine was Malaysian ringgit (MYR) 100 (interquartile range [IQR], 100) if it was readily available and MYR 150 (IQR, 200) if the supply was limited. Respondents with a low likelihood of vaccine hesitancy had 13 times higher odds of accepting the COVID-19 vaccine (95% confidence interval [CI], 8.69 to 19.13). High perceived risk and severity were also associated with willingness to be vaccinated, with adjusted odds ratios of 2.22 (95% CI, 1.44 to 3.41) and 2.76 (95% CI, 1.87 to 4.09), respectively. Age and ethnicity were the only independent demographic characteristics that predicted vaccine uptake.
Conclusion
Public health strategies targeting perceived risk, perceived susceptibility and vaccine hesitancy could be effective in enhancing vaccine uptake.
Editorial
Preparedness for the next wave of COVID-19 in the Republic of Korea
Jong-Koo Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):239-241.   Published online August 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0240
  • 368 View
  • 20 Download
PDF
Original Article
The role of risk perception, risk communication, and demographic factors in COVID-19 preventive behaviors: an online survey in Iran
Mansour Rezaei, Nader Rajabi Gilan, Ali Almasi, Mehdi Khezeli, Fatemeh Jamshidi Nazar, Zahra Jorjoran Shushtari, Yahya Salimi, Farid Najafi, Neda Sarabi, Shahram Saeidi, Saeid Saeidi
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(4):282-289.   Published online August 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0345
  • 314 View
  • 18 Download
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
This study investigated preventive behaviors toward coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and related factors in a Kurdish Iranian sample.
Methods
This online survey was conducted among the population aged 18 and above in Kermanshah Province, in western Iran, in April 2020. Samples were invited and recruited through social media. Data were collected using a questionnaire consisting of 4 sections (questions on demographic variables, risk perception, risk communication, and COVID-19 preventive behaviors) and analyzed using Stata ver. 8.
Results
The Pearson correlation test showed that risk communication was significantly correlated with COVID-19 preventive behaviors (r=0.320, p<0.01). In the final model, where the explanatory power increased with the entry of the risk communication variable, the variables explained a total of 14% of variance in COVID-19 preventive behaviors. Sex (β=−0.482), risk perception (β=0.047), and risk communication (β=0.662) were significant determinants.
Conclusion
Risk communication and risk perception related to COVID-19, as well as being a woman, were determinants of COVID-19 preventive behaviors.

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives