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Original Article
Transmission parameters of coronavirus disease 2019 in South Asian countries
Mridul Sannyal, Abul Mukid Md. Mukaddes
Received September 1, 2021  Accepted December 15, 2021  Published online June 23, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0234    [Epub ahead of print]
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
This study aimed to estimate the transmission parameters, effective reproduction number, epidemic peak, and future exposure of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in South Asian countries.
Methods
A susceptible-exposed-infected-recovered-death (SEIRD) model programmed with MATLAB was developed for this purpose. Data were collected (till June 28, 2021) from the official webpage of World Health Organization, along with the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The model was simulated to measure the primary transmission parameters. The reproduction number was measured using the next-generating matrix method.
Results
The primary transmission rate followed an exponential Gaussian process regression. India showed the highest transmission rate (0.037) and Bhutan the lowest (0.023). The simulated epidemic peaks matched the reported peaks, thereby validating the SEIRD model. The simulation was carried out up to December 31, 2020 using the reported data till June 9, 2020.
Conclusion
The information gathered in this research will be helpful for authorities to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 in the subsequent wave or in the future.
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
Received April 8, 2022  Accepted May 12, 2022  Published online June 10, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0122    [Epub ahead of print]
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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-year-olds were reported to theCVMS, 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 safety data reported in the United States and a controlled trial and serious adverse.events were rare among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years following COVID-19 vaccination.
Original Articles
Voluntary testing for COVID-19: perceptions and utilization among the inhabitants of Saudi Arabia
Ehab A. Abo-Ali, Ahmed Mousa, Rania Hussien, Shahad Mousa, Shayma Al-Rubaki, Mennatulla Omar, Badr Al-Haffashi, Abdullah Almilaibary
Received February 4, 2022  Accepted May 10, 2022  Published online June 10, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0062    [Epub ahead of print]
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Voluntary testing (VT) plays a crucial role in the prevention and control of infectious diseases. The present study investigated the perceptions and utilization of VT services for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) among the inhabitants of Saudi Arabia.
Methods
In total, 3,510 adult participants from all provinces of Saudi Arabia were recruited via a national online survey.
Results
Of the 3,510 participants, 88.9% were aware of the testing services available to them and of those, more than half (59.5%) had used the VT services and 96.1% were satisfied with the services. Contact with a positive COVID-19 case was the top reason for accessing VT, while a lack of awareness about the availability of VT services was the top perceived limiting factor. A history of chronic health conditions, anxiety and/or depression, and previous symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 were found to be predictors of the utilization of VT services (odds ratio [OR] 1.55, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.22−1.96; OR 1.48, 95% CI 1.16−1.88; and OR 3.31, 95% CI 2.77−3.95), respectively.
Conclusion
The awareness of voluntary COVID-19 testing services was satisfactory among the Saudi Arabian population, but can be improved. Sociodemographic and health history predictors of the utilization of VT services were identified.
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
Received January 9, 2022  Accepted May 15, 2022  Published online June 10, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0014    [Epub ahead of print]
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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.
Review Article
Immune-related therapeutics: an update on antiviral drugs and vaccines to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic
Iqra Mir, Sania Aamir, Syed Rizwan Hussain Shah, Muhammad Shahid, Iram Amin, Samia Afzal, Amjad Nawaz, Muhammad Umer Khan, Muhammad Idrees
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(2):84-100.   Published online April 27, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0024
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Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic rapidly spread globally. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which causes COVID-19, is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus with a reported fatality rate ranging from 1% to 7%, and people with immune-compromised conditions, children, and older adults are particularly vulnerable. Respiratory failure and cytokine storm-induced multiple organ failure are the major causes of death. This article highlights the innate and adaptive immune mechanisms of host cells activated in response to SARS-CoV-2 infection and possible therapeutic approaches against COVID-19. Some potential drugs proven to be effective for other viral diseases are under clinical trials now for use against COVID-19. Examples include inhibitors of RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (remdesivir, favipiravir, ribavirin), viral protein synthesis (ivermectin, lopinavir/ ritonavir), and fusion of the viral membrane with host cells (chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, nitazoxanide, and umifenovir). This article also presents the intellectual groundwork for the ongoing development of vaccines in preclinical and clinical trials, explaining potential candidates (live attenuated-whole virus vaccines, inactivated vaccines, subunit vaccines, DNAbased vaccines, protein-based vaccines, nanoparticle-based vaccines, virus-like particles and mRNA-based vaccines). Designing and developing an effective vaccine (both prophylactic and therapeutic) would be a long-term solution and the most effective way to eliminate the COVID-19 pandemic.
Original Articles
COVID-19 outbreak response at a nursing hospital in South Korea in the post-vaccination era, including an estimation of the effectiveness of the first shot of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine (ChAdOx1-S)
Chanhee Kim, Geon Kang, Sun Gu Kang, Heeyoung Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(2):114-122.   Published online April 26, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0262
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
We descriptively reviewed a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak at a nursing hospital in Gyeonggi Province (South Korea) and assessed the effectiveness of the first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in a real-world population. Methods: The general process of the epidemiological investigation included a public health intervention. The relative risk (RR) of vaccinated and unvaccinated groups was calculated and compared to confirm the risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARSCoV-2) infection, and vaccine effectiveness was evaluated based on the calculated RR. Results: The population at risk was confined to ward E among 8 wards of Hospital X, where the outbreak occurred. This population comprised 55 people, including 39 patients, 12 nurses, and 4 caregivers, and 19 cases were identified. The RR between the vaccinated and unvaccinated groups was 0.04, resulting in a vaccine effectiveness of 95.3%. The vaccination rate of the nonpatients in ward E was the lowest in the entire hospital, whereas the overall vaccination rate of the combined patient and non-patient groups in ward E was the third lowest. Conclusion: The first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine (ChAdOx1-S) was effective in preventing SARS-CoV-2 infection. To prevent COVID-19 outbreaks in medical facilities, it is important to prioritize the vaccination of healthcare providers.
Phylogenetic and genome-wide mutational analysis of SARS-CoV-2 strains circulating in Nigeria: no implications for attenuated COVID-19 outcomes
Daniel B. Kolawole, Malachy I. Okeke
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(2):101-113.   Published online April 22, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0329
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Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The COVID-19 incidence and mortality rates are low in Nigeria compared to global trends. This research mapped the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 circulating in Nigeria and globally to determine whether the Nigerian isolates are genetically distinct from strains circulating in regions of the world with a high disease burden. Methods: Bayesian phylogenetics using BEAST 2.0, genetic similarity analyses, and genomewide mutational analyses were used to characterize the strains of SARS-CoV-2 isolated in Nigeria. Results: SARS-CoV-2 strains isolated in Nigeria showed multiple lineages and possible introductions from Europe and Asia. Phylogenetic clustering and sequence similarity analyses demonstrated that Nigerian isolates were not genetically distinct from strains isolated in other parts of the globe. Mutational analysis demonstrated that the D614G mutation in the spike protein, the P323L mutation in open reading frame 1b (and more specifically in NSP12), and the R203K/ G204R mutation pair in the nucleocapsid protein were most prevalent in the Nigerian isolates. Conclusion: The SARS-CoV-2 strains in Nigeria were neither phylogenetically nor genetically distinct from virus strains circulating in other countries of the world. Thus, differences in SARS-CoV-2 genomes are not a plausible explanation for the attenuated COVID-19 outcomes in Nigeria.
Short Communication
COVID-19 outbreak and risk factors for infection in a taekwondo gym in the Republic of Korea
Seung Hwan Shin, Eonjoo Park, Sookhyun Kim, Minji Jang, Subin Park, Dong-Hwi Kim, Tae Jong Son, Ji-Hyuk Park
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(2):162-170.   Published online March 31, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0295
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Relatively few studies have assessed risk factors for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in public facilities used by children and adolescents. This study presents an analysis of a COVID-19 outbreak that occurred in a taekwondo gym in Korea, predominantly among children and adolescents, with the aim of providing insights on managing COVID-19 outbreaks in similar facilities. Methods: All 108 taekwondo gym students and staff received COVID-19 tests. A survey and closed-circuit television analyses were used to identify risk factors. A univariate analysis was conducted, followed by multivariate logistic regression analysis with backward elimination for variables with a significance level <0.10 in the univariate analysis. Results: COVID-19 was confirmed in 30 of 108 subjects at the taekwondo gym (attack rate, 27.8%). The outbreak started in an adult class student. This student transmitted the virus to the staff, who consequently transmitted the virus to adolescent students. In the univariate analysis, the relative risk for younger age (≤9 years) was 2.14 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01–4.54; p=0.054), and that for food consumption inside the gym was 2.12 (95% CI, 1.04–4.30; p=0.048). In the multivariate logistic regression analysis, the odds ratio for younger age was 2.96 (95% CI, 1.07–8.20; p=0.036), and that for food consumption inside the gym was 3.00 (95% CI, 1.10–8.17; p=0.032). Conclusion: Food consumption inside the facility and young age were significant risk factors for COVID-19 transmission in this taekwondo gym. Food consumption should be prohibited in sports facilities, and infection prevention education for young students is also required.
Original Articles
Associations of pre-existing cardiovascular morbidity with severity and the fatality rate in COVID-19 patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Foad Alzoughool, Suhad Abumweis, Lo’ai Alanagreh, Manar Atoum
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(1):37-50.   Published online February 18, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0186
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Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Objectives
The aim of this study was to evaluate the association of pre-existing cardiovascular comorbidities, including hypertension and coronary heart disease, with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) severity and mortality. Methods: PubMed, ScienceDirect, and Scopus were searched between January 1, 2020, and July 18, 2020, to identify eligible studies. Random-effect models were used to estimate the pooled event rates of pre-existing cardiovascular disease comorbidities and odds ratio (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) of disease severity and mortality associated with the exposures of interest. Results: A total of 34 studies involving 19,156 patients with COVID-19 infection met the inclusion criteria. The prevalence of pre-existing cardiovascular disease in the included studies was 14.0%. Pre-existing cardiovascular disease in COVID-19 patients was associated with severe outcomes (OR, 4.1; 95% CI, 2.9 to 5.7) and mortality (OR, 6.1; 95% CI, 2.9 to 12.7). Hypertension and coronary heart disease increased the risk of severe outcomes by 2.6 times (OR, 2.6; 95% CI, 1.9 to 3.6) and 2.5 times (OR, 2.5; 95% CI, 1.7 to 3.8), respectively. No significant publication bias was indicated. Conclusion: COVID-19 patients with pre-existing cardiovascular comorbidities have a higher risk of severe outcomes and mortality. Awareness of pre-existing cardiovascular comorbidity is important for the early management of COVID-19.
Generalized anxiety and sleep quality among health care professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional study from a tertiary healthcare institution in Eastern India
Bijaya Nanda Naik, Sanjay Pandey, Rajath Rao, Manisha Verma, Prashant Kumar Singh
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(1):51-61.   Published online February 8, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0316
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
With the emergence of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, healthcare professionals (HCPs) have experienced high levels of stress and anxiety because of the high risk of infection for themselves and their families. This has led to acute sleep problems for HCP. This study was designed to assess the anxiety and sleep quality of HCPs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: This cross-sectional study analyzed 370 HCPs employed at All India Institute of Medical Sciences Patna over 3 months, using the standard Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item scale (GAD-7) for suspected GAD and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index for sleep quality. Results were tabulated and multivariable binomial logistic regression analysis was done to determine the predictors of poor sleep. Significance was attributed to p<0.05. Results: Of the 370 HCPs screened, 52 (14.1%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 10.8%–18.1%) were found to have GAD and 195 (52.7%; 95% CI, 47.5%–57.9%) were found to be poor sleepers. The presence of any addictive habit (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 1.833; 95% CI, 1.12–2.8), unprotected contact with COVID-19 cases (AOR, 1.902; 95% CI, 1.1–3.3), and the presence of GAD (AOR, 5.57; 95% CI, 2.5–12.4) were found to be predictors of poor sleep quality among HCPs. Conclusion: A significant proportion of HCPs were found to have suspected GAD and were poor sleepers. This highlights the need for measures to confront this problem.
Review Articles
Points to consider for COVID-19 vaccine quality control and national lot release in Republic of Korea: focus on a viral vector platform
Jung Hun Ju, Naery Lee, Sun-hee Kim, Seokkee Chang, Misook Yang, Jihyun Shin, Eunjo Lee, Sunhwa Sung, Jung-Hwan Kim, Jin Tae Hong, Ho Jung Oh
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(1):4-14.   Published online February 8, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0311
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Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Due to the global public health crisis caused by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the importance of vaccine development has increased. In particular, a rapid supply of vaccines and prompt deployment of vaccination programs are essential to prevent and overcome the spread of COVID-19. As a part of the vaccine regulations, national lot release is regulated by the responsible authorities, and this process involves the assessment of the lot before a vaccine is marketed. A lot can be released for use when both summary protocol (SP) review and quality control testing are complete. Accelerated lot release is required to distribute COVID-19 vaccines in a timely manner. In order to expedite the process by simultaneously undertaking the verification of quality assessment and application for approval, it is necessary to prepare the test methods before marketing authorization. With the prolonged pandemic and controversies regarding the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine against new variants, public interest for the development of a new vaccine are increasing. Domestic developers have raised the need to establish standard guidance on the requirements for developing COVID-19 vaccine. This paper presents considerations for quality control in the manufacturing process, test items, and SP content of viral vector vaccines.
Worldwide prevalence of fungal coinfections among COVID-19 patients: a comprehensive systematic review and meta-analysis
Saber Soltani, Milad Zandi, Samireh Faramarzi, Ramin Shahbahrami, Mohebat Vali, Sara Akhavan Rezayat, Reza Pakzad, Pooneh Malekifar, Iraj Pakzad, Neda Jahandoost, Jalal Moludi
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(1):15-23.   Published online February 8, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0293
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Microbial coinfections can increase the morbidity and mortality rates of viral respiratory diseases. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the pooled prevalence of fungal coinfections in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients. Web of Science, Medline, Scopus, and Embase were searched without language restrictions to identify the related research on COVID-19 patients with fungal coinfections from December 1, 2019, to December 30, 2020. A random-effects model was used for analysis. The sample size included 2,246 patients from 8 studies. The pooled prevalence of fungal coinfections was 12.60%. The frequency of fungal subtype coinfections was 3.71% for Aspergillus, 2.39% for Candida, and 0.39% for other. The World Health Organization’s Regional Office for Europe and Regional Office for Southeast Asia had the highest (23.28%) and lowest (4.53%) estimated prevalence of fungal coinfection, respectively. Our findings showed a high prevalence of fungal coinfections in COVID-19 cases, which is a likely contributor to mortality in COVID-19 patients. Early identification of fungal pathogens in the laboratory for COVID-19 patients can lead to timely treatment and prevention of further damage by this hidden infection.
Brief Report
COVID-19 vaccine safety monitoring in Republic of Korea from February 26, 2021 to October 31, 2021
Insob Hwang, Kyeongeun Park, Tae Eun Kim, Yunhyung Kwon, Yeon-Kyeng Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2021;12(6):396-402.   Published online December 21, 2021
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0310
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  • 1 Citations
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Objectives
This study aimed to present data on reported adverse events following coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination in Republic of Korea from February 26 to October 31, 2021, and to determine whether any significant patterns emerged from an analysis of the characteristics of suspected adverse event cases for each type of vaccine.
Methods
Adverse events following COVID-19 vaccination reported by medical doctors and forensic pathologists were analyzed. Cases of suspected anaphylaxis were classified using the Brighton Collaboration definition.
Results
By October 31, 2021, a total of 353,535 (0.45%) adverse events were reported after 78,416,802 COVID-19 vaccine doses. Of the adverse events, 96.4% were non-serious and 3.6% were serious. The most frequently reported adverse events were headache, myalgia, and dizziness. Of the 835 reported deaths after COVID-19 vaccination, 2 vaccine-related deaths were confirmed. Suspected anaphylaxis was confirmed in 454 cases using the Brighton Collaboration definition.
Conclusion
The commonly reported symptoms were similar to those described in clinical trials. Most reported adverse events were non-serious, and the reporting rate of adverse events following COVID-19 vaccination was higher in women than in men (581 vs. 315 per 100,000 vaccinations). Confirmed anaphylaxis was reported in 5.8 cases per 1,000,000 vaccinations.
Review Article
Social determinants of adherence to COVID-19 preventive guidelines: a comprehensive review
Zahra Jorjoran Shushtari, Yahya Salimi, Sina Ahmadi, Nader Rajabi-Gilan, Marzieh Shirazikhah, Akbar Biglarian, Ali Almasi, Mohammad Ali Mohammadi Gharehghani
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2021;12(6):346-360.   Published online December 21, 2021
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2021.0180
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  • 1 Citations
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Adherence to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) preventive guidelines (ACPG) is an important strategy to control the COVID-19 pandemic effectively. The present study aimed to identify and summarize the social determinants of ACPG among the general population. A comprehensive review was performed from December 2019 to February 2021 through searching electronic databases. Two independent reviewers assessed and selected relevant studies. Next, the characteristics and main findings of the included studies were summarized. Finally, the World Health Organization’s conceptual framework of social determinants of health was used to synthesize the identified social determinants of ACPG. Forty-one of 453 retrieved articles met the inclusion criteria. The study results showed different patterns of ACPG among various communities. Furthermore, 84 social determinants were identified and categorized into structural and intermediary determinants. ACPG is a set of complex behaviors associated with different individual sociodemographic and behavioral characteristics; living and working conditions; COVID-19 knowledge, attitudes, and risk perceptions; exposure to sources and information level; leisure activities; social support; trust; social norms; psychosocial well-being; socio-economic position; and the socio-economic and political context. Interventions to promote ACPG among the general population should consider the identified social determinants of ACPG.
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
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  • 364 Download
  • 4 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.

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives