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Time-series comparison of COVID-19 case fatality rates across 21 countries with adjustment for multiple covariates
Yongmoon Kim, Bryan Inho Kim, Sangwoo Tak
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(6):424-434.   Published online November 28, 2022
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Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Although it is widely used as a measure for mortality, the case fatality rate (CFR) ofcoronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can vary over time and fluctuate for many reasons otherthan viral characteristics. To compare the CFRs of different countries in equal measure, weestimated comparable CFRs after adjusting for multiple covariates and examined the mainfactors that contributed to variability in the CFRs among 21 countries.Methods: For statistical analysis, time-series cross-sectional data were collected from OurWorld in Data,, and GISAID. Biweekly CFRs of COVID-19 were estimated bypooled generalized linear squares regression models for the panel data. Covariates includedthe predominant virus variant, reproduction rate, vaccination, national economic status,hospital beds, diabetes prevalence, and population share of individuals older than age 65. Intotal, 21 countries were eligible for analysis.Results: Adjustment for covariates reduced variation in the CFRs of COVID-19 across countriesand over time. Regression results showed that the dominant spread of the Omicron variant,reproduction rate, and vaccination were associated with lower country-level CFRs, whereasage, the extreme poverty rate, and diabetes prevalence were associated with higher countrylevel CFRs.Conclusion: A direct comparison of crude CFRs among countries may be fallacious, especiallyin a cross-sectional analysis. Our study presents an adjusted comparison of CFRs over timefor a more proper comparison. In addition, our findings suggest that comparing CFRs amongdifferent countries without considering their context, such as the epidemic phase, medicalcapacity, surveillance strategy, and socio-demographic traits, should be avoided.
Clinical outcomes of remdesivir-treated COVID-19 patients in South Korea
Mi Yu, Bryan Inho Kim, Jungyeon Kim, Jin Gwack
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(5):370-376.   Published online October 18, 2022
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AbstractAbstract PDF
This study analyzed the clinical outcomes of remdesivir treatment in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients in South Korea.
This retrospective cohort study involved the secondary analysis of epidemiological data. Among patients diagnosed with COVID-19 from July 2, 2020 to March 23, 2021 (12 AM), 4,868 who received oxygen therapy and were released from isolation after receiving remdesivir treatment were assigned to the treatment group, and 6,068 patients who received oxygen therapy but not remdesivir were assigned to the untreated group. The study subjects included children under the age of 19. The general characteristics and severity were compared between the groups. Differences in the time to death and mortality were also compared.
In the untreated group, the hazard ratio [HR] for mortality was 1.59 among patients aged ≥70 years and 2.32 in patients with severe disease in comparison to the treatment group. In a comparison of survival time among patients with severe disease aged ≥70 years, the HR for mortality before 50 days was 2.09 in the untreated group compared to the treatment group.
Patients with remdesivir treatment showed better clinical outcomes in this study, but these results should be interpreted with caution since this study was not a fully controlled clinical trial.
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
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AbstractAbstract PDF
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.
KCDC Risk Assessments on the Initial Phase of the COVID-19 Outbreak in Korea
Inho Kim, Jia Lee, Jihee Lee, Eensuk Shin, Chaeshin Chu, Seon Kui Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2020;11(2):67-73.   Published online April 30, 2020
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  • 15 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF

This study aims to evaluate the risk assessments of coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) in the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), from the point of detection to the provision of basic information to the relevant public health authorities.


To estimate the overall risk of specific public health events, probability, and impact at the country-level were evaluated using available information. To determine the probability of particular public health events, the risk of importation and risk of transmission were taken into consideration. KCDC used 5 levels (“very low,” “low,” “moderate,” “high,” and “very high”) for each category and overall risk was eventually decided.


A total of 8 risk assessments were performed on 8 separate occasions between January 8th to February 28th, 2020, depending on the detection and report of COVID-19 cases in other countries. The overall risk of the situation in each assessment increased in severity over this period: “low” (first), “moderate” (second), “high” (third), “high” (fourth), “high” (fifth), “high” (sixth), “high” (seventh), and “very high” (eighth).


The KCDC’s 8 risk assessments were utilized to activate national emergency response mechanisms and eventually prepare for the pandemic to ensure the containment and mitigation of COVID-19 with non-pharmaceutical public health measures.


Citations to this article as recorded by  
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    Environmental Technology & Innovation.2021; 23: 101597.     CrossRef
  • Transmission dynamics and control of two epidemic waves of SARS-CoV-2 in South Korea
    Sukhyun Ryu, Sheikh Taslim Ali, Eunbi Noh, Dasom Kim, Eric H. Y. Lau, Benjamin J. Cowling
    BMC Infectious Diseases.2021;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Identifying and Prioritizing Ways to Improve Oman’s Tourism Sector in the Corona Period
    Zakiya Salim Al-Hasni
    Journal of Intercultural Management.2021; 13(1): 144.     CrossRef
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    Sukhyun Ryu, Youngsik Hwang, Sheikh Taslim Ali, Dong-Sook Kim, Eili Y Klein, Eric H Y Lau, Benjamin J Cowling
    The Journal of Infectious Diseases.2021; 224(6): 949.     CrossRef
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  • Effect of Nonpharmaceutical Interventions on Transmission of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2, South Korea, 2020
    Sukhyun Ryu, Seikh Taslim Ali, Cheolsun Jang, Baekjin Kim, Benjamin J. Cowling
    Emerging Infectious Diseases.2020; 26(10): 2406.     CrossRef
  • Early Trend of Imported COVID-19 Cases in South Korea

    Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives.2020; 11(3): 140.     CrossRef
  • Effect of Underlying Comorbidities on the Infection and Severity of COVID-19 in Korea: a Nationwide Case-Control Study
    Wonjun Ji, Kyungmin Huh, Minsun Kang, Jinwook Hong, Gi Hwan Bae, Rugyeom Lee, Yewon Na, Hyoseon Choi, Seon Yeong Gong, Yoon-Hyeong Choi, Kwang-Pil Ko, Jeong-Soo Im, Jaehun Jung
    Journal of Korean Medical Science.2020;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Innovative countermeasures can maintain cancer care continuity during the coronavirus disease-2019 pandemic in Korea
    Soohyeon Lee, Ah-reum Lim, Min Ja Kim, Yoon Ji Choi, Ju Won Kim, Kyong Hwa Park, Sang Won Shin, Yeul Hong Kim
    European Journal of Cancer.2020; 136: 69.     CrossRef

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives