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   2022| November  | Volume 66 | Issue 5  
    Online since November 11, 2022

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Contemporary Public Health Challenges for Kerala
Thomas Mathew, Devraj Ramakrishnan, SR Bilal
November 2022, 66(5):1-2
  3,103 314 -
Prevalence of early childhood caries in India: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Induja Devan, Venkitachalam Ramanarayanan, Chandrashekar Janakiram
November 2022, 66(5):3-11
This review was designed to assess the pooled prevalence of early childhood caries (ECC) in India. An electronic data search was done in PubMed/MEDLINE and Scopus databases in October 2020. Epidemiological surveys assessing the prevalence of ECC were included, and data on gender, geographic region, sampling strategy, feeding habits, and dmft values were extracted. The risk of bias was assessed, and a meta-analysis was performed for pooled prevalence and mean dmft values. The selection of articles, data extraction, and validity assessment were done independently by the two reviewers (ID and RV). A third reviewer (CJ) resolved any conflict between these two reviewers. A total of seventy-one studies were included for quantitative analysis. The pooled prevalence of ECC estimated from 71 studies with 69,330 participants is 46.9% (confidence interval [CI] 46.5–47.2). Males had a higher prevalence of ECC (47%, CI: 46.4–47.6,40 studies, 26,840 participants) than females (43.8%, CI: 43.2–44.2,40 studies, 24,389 participants). Region-wise analysis showed the highest number of studies (44) in southern India, with a sample size of 35,988 with a pooled prevalence of 44.6% (CI: 44–45.1). The pooled mean dmft (random effect) is 2.23 (1.97–2.48), with males having a higher proportion of 2.26 compared to 2.23 in females. The pooled prevalence of ECC was 46.9%, and the pooled mean was 2.23. The results from this study state that one in every two children in India is suffering from ECC, reflecting its public health relevance.
  1,848 363 -
Prevalence of overlap syndrome in patients with obstructive sleep apnea in a quaternary care center of Kerala
Sreeraj Nair, Tisa Paul, Asmita Anilkumar Mehta, Nithya Haridas, Akhilesh Kunoor, Nidhi Sudhakar
November 2022, 66(5):12-16
Background: The coexistence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is termed “Overlap syndrome (OS).” Objectives: The present study aimed at estimating the prevalence of OS among patients diagnosed with OSA. Methods: It was a prospective observational study conducted on patients presenting to respiratory medicine outpatient department (sleep clinic) with symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing and was found to have OSA by overnight polysomnography. These patients were then subjected to spirometry to diagnose COPD. Results: The prevalence of OS in the study population was found to be 41.3%. Excessive daytime sleepiness was found to be higher in overlap group patients (P = 0.033), the difference was statistically significant. The mean age (59.9 ± 9.6 years) was found to be high in the OS group compared to those without the same. The mean forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC), and FEV1/FVC (pre- and postbronchodilator) spirometry parameters were found to be lower in patients with OS. Conclusion: The study showed that the prevalence of OS in the present study was 41.3%. Excessive daytime sleepiness and age >60 years were risk factors for OS in a patient with OSA. OS patients had lower pulmonary function values.
  1,476 348 -
Glycemic control and its determinants among people with type 2 diabetes mellitus in Ernakulam district, Kerala
Shana Shirin Najeeb, Teena Mary Joy, Aswathy Sreedevi, K Vijayakumar, Syama , Glycaemic Control and Determinants Team
November 2022, 66(5):80-86
Background: Diabetes is a public health problem of colossal proportions. The National Family Health Survey 5 (2019–2020) has found high blood sugar levels among 13.5% of women and 15.6% of men in India. The high morbidity and mortality in diabetes mellitus are due to uncontrolled hyperglycemia resulting in micro- and macrovascular changes affecting multiple organs in the body. The objectives of this study were to estimate glycemic control and its determinants among type 2 diabetics in the Ernakulam district. Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted among 364 type 2 diabetics who had the disease for at least 5 years duration in the Ernakulam district of Kerala. Probability proportional to size cluster sampling technique was adopted. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect sociodemographic and behavioral profiles. Participants' HbA1c levels were assessed to determine glycemic control. Results: The proportion of people with good glycemic control was 21.4%. Determinants such as female gender adjusted odds ratio (aOR = 2.36, P = 0.005), body mass index >23 kg/m2 (aOR = 2.71, P = 0.002), combined drug treatment with Oral Hypoglycaemic agents (OHA) and insulin (aOR = 3.76, P = 0.004), and poor compliance with medications (aOR = 1.93, P = 0.030) were found to be significantly associated with poor glycemic control. Conclusions: Poor compliance with medications and unhealthy lifestyle choices has resulted in a high proportion of diabetics with poor glycemic control in the district. Women are particularly more vulnerable to uncontrolled hyperglycemia than males. Type 2 diabetes mellitus people should be encouraged to maintain strict glycemic control, which is an important measure for secondary prevention of complications.
  1,532 222 -
Impact of early pulmonary rehabilitation in postacute COVID Disease: A single-center experience from India – A quasi-experimental study
Akhilesh Kunoor, Divya Surendran, Harsha Hari, Veena Viswan, K Harikrishnan, Asmita Anilkumar Mehta
November 2022, 66(5):51-55
Background: It was observed that post-COVID patients reported persistent exertional dyspnea, cough, fatigue, or chest pain. About 10%–20% of patients may progress to pulmonary fibrosis. Pulmonary rehabilitation has been proven to be useful in improving effort tolerance and quality of life in chronic respiratory diseases. Objectives: The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of pulmonary rehabilitation in improving 6-min walk distance (6 MWD), peak flow, fatigue, anxiety, and depression in early postacute COVID disease. Materials and Methods: This quasi-experimental study was conducted during January 2021 to March 2021. The patients who recovered from COVID-19 and having persistent exertional dyspnea and fatigue after 3 weeks of recovery were included in the study. Baseline and postintervention assessment of 6 MWD, Visual Analog Scale for Fatigue (VAS-F), peak flow, and Hamilton rating scales (HAM) scales after 4 weeks were done. Compliance was ensured with weakly telemonitoring. Results: Significant improvement in peak flow, 6 MWD, Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A), Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D), and VAS-F (P < 0.01) after 4 weeks of pulmonary rehabilitation. Conclusion: Early pulmonary rehabilitation in post-COVID syndrome can contribute to statistically significant improvement in functional and psychological parameters as well as post-COVID fatigue.
  1,462 94 -
Knowledge, attitude, and practice regarding mosquito-borne diseases among migrant laborers from a migrant settlement in Ponekkara, Ernakulam Kerala
Rohini Bhardwaj, K Sreelakshmi Mohandas, Minu Maria Mathew
November 2022, 66(5):56-59
Background: Mosquito-borne diseases (MBDs) such as Malaria, Dengue, Chikungunya, lymphatic filariasis, and Japanese Encephalitis are important public health problems in India. Ernakulam in Kerala being a hub of construction activities has a large influx of migrants from Odisha, West Bengal, Bihar, Assam, U. P., Jharkhand, T. N., and Karnataka. Hence, the objective of this study was to assess the knowledge, attitude, and practice related to MBDs and the associated factors among the migrant laborers from a migrant settlement in Ponekkara, Ernakulam Kerala. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was done among 179 migrant laborers from a migrant settlement in Ponekkara, Kerala, from September 2021 to November 2021 using a pretested semi-structured questionnaire to collect information regarding socio-demographic details and their knowledge, attitude, and practice regarding mosquito borne diseases. After taking verbal consent, the questionnaire was administered by the investigator. Descriptive and univariate analysis was done using SPSS Version 20. Results: It was found that 58.4% of the migrant laborers had poor knowledge, 55.9% had poor attitude, and 61.5% of them had poor practice regarding MBDs. On univariate analysis, a statistically significant association was observed between attitude score and the level of education. Conclusion: The findings showed that migrant laborers had an overall poor knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding MBDs. Consequently, there is a need to plan an awareness program among the migrant settlements regarding MBDs.
  1,330 180 -
Prevalence of bronchial asthma in school going children: A cross-sectional study from Uttar Pradesh
Tazeen Shamshad, Najam Khalique, Mohammad Shameem, Mohammad Salman Shah, Tabassum Nawab
November 2022, 66(5):22-26
Background: Asthma is coined as a chronic inflammatory disorder and disarrays of the airways and respiratory tract which manifests as recurrent episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and cough. The World Health Organization recognizes asthma as a major health problem. Although asthma can occur at any age, children and young adults are the age groups which are affected more commonly. Objectives: The objective of this study is to find the prevalence of bronchial asthma in school-going children (6–16 years) and its associated factors. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study among the school-going children in the age group of 6–16 years was done in the field practice areas of urban health and training center and rural health and training center of the Department of Community Medicine, JNMCH, A. M. U., Aligarh, U.P. the study done for a period of one year. The validated questionnaire (International Study on Allergy and Asthma in Childhood) was used. The sample size was taken as 902. The data were entered and analyzed in the SPSS statistical software version 20.0. Chi-square was used. Results: The prevalence of asthma among the study population was found to be 26.9%. Family history of smoking and history of allergy in an individual came out to be a significant factor associated with asthma. The association is also significant between asthma and the diet of an individual. Conclusions: Asthma among school children is a public health problem in urban and rural areas. There was a rising pattern in the prevalence of asthma at national and subnational levels.
  1,199 265 -
Seroconversion and side effects after COVID vaccination among persons with type 2 diabetes in urban, rural, and tribal areas in Kerala, India
Navami Sasidharan, Aswathy Sreedevi, Sreelakshmi Mohandas, Chitra Tomy, Sanjeev Vasudevan, Diabetes Seroconversion Study Team
November 2022, 66(5):71-75
Background: Persons with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) are at high-risk for COVID-19 infection and are a priority group for vaccination. Objectives: The objective of this study is to estimate the seroconversion and determine the side effects after COVID-19 vaccination among persons with T2DM in urban, rural, and tribal areas in Kerala. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in urban, rural, and tribal field practice areas of a medical college in Central Kerala, among 396 persons with T2DM. The participants were selected by simple random sampling from the 200–250 diabetic patients visiting each health center. Qualitative and quantitative estimation of antibodies were done by WANTAI Ab enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kit and Abbott SARS COV-2 IgG Quantitative assay, respectively. Results: The mean age of the respondents was 59.40 ± 12.25 years. A majority (65.5%) had received both doses of vaccine. About half (51.5%) experienced side effects after vaccination. Antibodies (IgG or IgM) were detected in 93.2% (95% confidence interval [CI] 90.2, 95.5) of participants. Those with a duration of diabetes ≥5 years, with a single dose of vaccine, were five times (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] – 5.23,95% CI 1.86, 14.66) and four times (aOR – 4.11, 95% CI 1.66, 10.13) more likely, respectively, to be seronegative. Those who took medication for diabetes were protected against a no antibody (aOR – 0.05, 95% CI 0.02, 0.148) response. The median antibody titer in a subset (150) of participants was 365.2 (90–1587) AU/ml. Past COVID infection was an independent determinant of high IgG titers (aOR – 4.95, 95% CI 1.50, 16.36). Conclusion: Reinforcing the importance of vaccination particularly among those with longer duration of diabetes is imperative.
  1,324 113 -
Impact of empagliflozin add-on therapy on quality of life in patients of type 2 diabetes mellitus with hypertension: A prospective study
Imtiyaz Ahmed Najar, Shariq Rashid Masoodi, Shakeel Ahmed Mir, Moomin Hussain Bhat, Rakesh Raman Patyar, Sazal Patyar
November 2022, 66(5):41-44
Background: Diabetes has a negative impact on patient's quality of life (QoL). Comorbidities and polypharmacy further worsen their QoL. Thus, in addition to glycemic control, assessment of QoL is also gaining importance. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate QoL in patients of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) with hypertension after add-on empagliflozin to triple drug therapy (metformin, teneligliptin, and glimepiride). Materials and Methods: A prospective research was done on T2DM patients with hypertension, who visited a tertiary care referral institute's endocrine outpatient clinic. For 3 months, empagliflozin, 25 mg once daily, was administered as an add-on treatment with metformin, teneligliptin, and glimepiride. In addition to clinical assessment, an Urdu-translated QoL instrument for Indian diabetes patients was used to conduct QoL study. The QoL outcomes prior to empagliflozin add-on were compared with those obtained at the conclusion of the 3 months of treatment. Results: Empagliflozin as an add-on therapy significantly improved various aspects of QoL like role limitation due to physical health, physical endurance, general health, symptom botherness, financial worries, emotional/mental health, and diet satisfaction (P < 0.001). It also improved glycemic and blood pressure parameters significantly. Conclusion: QoL is an essential measure with respect to patient-centered treatment approach. Empagliflozin, as an add-on medication, improved QoL, glycemic parameters and blood pressure in T2DM patients with hypertension. It can be recommended as an add-on, but more research with a larger sample size is required.
  1,214 163 -
Retrospective observational study to compare Xpert MTB/RIF assay with other diagnostic tests in lymph node tuberculosis
Nithya Haridas, Asmita Mehta, Akhilesh Kunoor, Sadia Khan
November 2022, 66(5):17-21
Background: Lymph node tuberculosis (TB) is the most common form of extrapulmonary TB in India. Standards for TB care in India recommend microscopy/culture/CBNAAT/molecular test/histopathology examination and drug sensitivity testing on appropriate specimens from the presumed sites of involvement for all patients with presumptive extrapulmonary TB. Objectives: To analyze the utility of Xpert MTB/Rif assay in lymph node TB. Methods: All patients who underwent lymph node sampling between July 2014 and June 2017 and for whom Xpert MTB/Rif assay was done were included. Demographic profile, Xpert MTB/Rif assay result, histopathology/cytology findings, smear acid-fast bacillus (AFB), and AFB culture results were noted. A composite reference score (CRS) was made. Results: Xpert MTB/Rif assay was positive in 63 of the 81 patients. Xpert had a sensitivity of 82.14% and specificity of 86.18%when compared against AFB culture and 75.61% and 98.97% when compared against CRS. Conclusion: Xpert MTB/Rif assay is a valuable test for rapid diagnosis of lymph node TB.
  1,084 230 -
Budgetary allocation for health sector projects in local bodies with specific reference to noncommunicable diseases control
Sujatha Chintha, Srinivasan Kannan
November 2022, 66(5):31-35
Background: The role of local self-government (LSG) bodies in planning community-level interventions for noncommunicable diseases (NCD) control is critical. An understanding of how much priority is given to NCD in decentralized health planning is needed. Objective: The objective of this study is to analyze the pattern of budgetary allocation for health sector projects at different levels of LSGs in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, with specific reference to NCD control. Materials and Methods: Secondary data analysis was done on economic review reports and reports on health sector projects obtained from LSG department with permission. The pattern of budgetary allocation of health projects in both urban and rural local bodies of Thiruvananthapuram district for 2019–2020 was studied. Results: The proportion of NCD projects in terms of number and budget allocation, respectively, among health sector projects for gram panchayaths (GP) was 47 projects (5.25%) and 63.19 lakhs (1.8%). Figures for block panchayaths (BP) were 13 (9%) and 98.10 lakhs (10.94%), for district panchayath (DP), 1 (0.9%) and 48 lakhs (3%), for municipalities 1 (1.6%) and 4.66 lakhs (1.2%), and for corporation were 1 (1.4%) and 3 lakhs (0.16%). Only 29 (40%) GP and 5 (45%) BP had at least one NCD project. At the GP level, 21% of projects were community-based interventions and 15% of projects were for cancer screening, mental health, and hospital-based NCD clinics each. Among local bodies with lower allocation for NCD projects, the amount allocated for construction and maintenance work in health institutions was higher. Conclusion: Decision-making in decentralized health planning needs an evidence-based realignment of priorities toward NCD.
  1,066 107 -
Seroprevalence of COVID-19 antibody among children aged 5–17 years in an urban and rural area of Ernakulam District, Kerala
Saanu Sidharthan, Seenu Shaik, Chitra Tomy, K Sreelakshmi Mohandas, B Poornima, Paediatric COVID19 Seroconversion Group
November 2022, 66(5):66-70
Background: The age group of 5–17 years belongs to the vulnerable segment of the population for COVID-19 infection in India. Seroprevalence in this population can therefore allow inferences to be made about the extent of infection. Objectives: The objective of this study was to assess the seroprevalence and to determine the factors associated with COVID-19 antibody among children aged 5–17 years in an urban and rural area of Kochi, Kerala. Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was undertaken in the urban and rural field practice areas of the community medicine department in a medical college, Kochi. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect information about sociodemographic data, history related to COVID-19, and the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 antibody test result. Blood samples were collected and tested for the presence of COVID-19 antibodies using the Wantai test kit after attaining informed assent from the parent/guardian. Results: The seroprevalence of the COVID-19 antibody was 48.3% among participants. The seroprevalence of COVID-19 antibody was higher among children of mothers with skilled/unskilled occupation, residents of rural area, above poverty line category, those with a history of COVID-19, and those who had a history of contact with COVID-19-positive patients. Conclusion: Half of the study population were COVID antibody positive, and the rest were at risk of infection. Therefore, adherence to COVID-19 guidelines is essential to control further spread of infection among children.
  988 89 -
Prevalence of obsessive–Compulsive symptoms and the level of fear due to COVID-19 pandemic among the undergraduate medical students in a tertiary care unit in Southern India
Aditi Arora, Alankrithi Chauhan, Shivani Sunil Dhonge, Nikita Pandey, Avani Dinesh, OCS FEAR COVID TEAM
November 2022, 66(5):76-79
Background: The emergence of COVID-19 and its consequences is causing widespread fears, anxiety, and worries. To overcome the transmission of COVID-19, people resorted to compulsive behaviors. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to assess the prevalence of obsessive–compulsive symptoms (OCSs) due to COVID-19 pandemic, the prevalence of level of fear due to COVID-19 pandemic, and to assess the factors associated with OCSs due to COVID-19 pandemic among the undergraduate medical students of in tertiary unit in Southern India. Methods: The cross-sectional study was conducted in 250 undergraduate medical students (both MBBS and BDS, from 1st to 4th year) in the institute. Students who had consented in the study were included as study participants. The Yale–Brown Obsessive–Compulsive Scale and Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19 S) were used in assessing OCSs and the level of fear due to COVID-19. Chi-square test and multiple logistic regression were used to compute the factors associated with OCS. Results: The mean age of the respondents was 21 ± 1.313 years. The prevalence of OCS in undergraduate medical students was 36 (14.4%), and the level of FCV-19 was 107 (42.8%). Male students (17.8%, 44.2%) had higher OCSs and levels of fear as compared to female students (13.6%, 42.4%). Students with FCV-19 were three (adjusted odds ratio-3.418, 95% confidence interval-1.596, 7.319) times more likely to manifest OCSs while factors such as age, gender, and course were not significantly associated with OCS. Conclusion: Psychological counseling for undergraduate students should be pivotal, especially during pandemics and outbreaks.
  906 124 -
Mini international neuropsychiatry interview kid or child posttraumatic stress disorder symptom scale 5I for posttraumatic stress disorder among adolescent girls infected with COVID-19
Anandu Suresh, Sindhu Shankar, Pradeep Tarikere Satyanarayana
November 2022, 66(5):27-30
Background: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental disorder that may develop after exposure to exceptionally life threatening or horrifying events. People suffering from PTSD are vulnerable for both physical and mental health. Objectives: To find out sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), and to plot receiver operating characteristic curve taking Mini International Neuropsychiatry Interview-Kid (MINIKID) as the gold standard and Child PTSD Symptom Scale 5I (CPSS-5I) as the newer diagnostic tool for diagnosing PTSD. Materials and Methods: The cross-sectional study was carried out for a period of 6 months from January 2021 to June 2021 at R. L. Jalappa Hospital and Research Center, Kolar, Karnataka through telephonic interviews. All the data entered in Microsoft office Excel sheet, analyzed using the SPSSv22 (IBM Corp). Results: Sensitivity of the CPSS-5I was 56% and specificity was 96% compared with MINIKID. 83% and 85%, respectively, was PPV and NPV of the CPSS-5I compared with MINIKID. Area under the curve is 83.9% with P < 0.001 (72.5–95.2) indicating CPSS-5I is 84% sensitive proving to be a very good diagnostic tool for diagnosing PTSD. Furthermore, scores of 9.5 or 10.5 from CPSS-5I can be used as cutoff in diagnosing PTSD using CPSS 51. Conclusion: CPSS-5I is extremely well designed, helpful and functional tool used in diagnosing PTSD. With the current study showing CPSS-5I can be used in post-COVID PTSD diagnosis, it also provides cutoff which can be helpful in mass screening.
  846 95 -
Diagnostic and treatment delay among new pulmonary tuberculosis patients in Southern India: A cross-sectional study
Arjun Balasubramnian, Paul T Francis, K Leelamoni, PS Rakesh, Jishnu Sathees Lalu
November 2022, 66(5):60-65
Background: Delay in diagnosis and treatment enhances tuberculosis (TB) transmission and mortality. Understanding causes for delay can help in TB elimination by 2025, the stated goal of India. Objectives: Estimate diagnostic and treatment delay in Ernakulam district of Kerala, identify associated factors, and determine health-seeking behavior and knowledge regarding TB among new pulmonary TB patients. Materials and Methods: Community-based cross-sectional study among the new pulmonary TB patients registered under Revised National TB Control Program. Patients interviewed in-person and data collected using pretested semi-structured questionnaire. Descriptive statistics expressed as frequency, percent, interquartile range, median, and mean. The Chi-square test was used to assess statistical significance (P < 0.05) of association. Backward conditional method logistic regression done using variables with P < 0.2 in univariate analysis and adjusting for possible confounders. Results: Two hundred and twenty-nine patients interviewed and the median patient, health-care system, and treatment delay were 25 days, 22 days, and 1 day, respectively. While the patient delay (>30 days) and treatment delay (>2 days) were seen in 47.6% and 41% of patients, respectively, health-care system delay was seen in 79.9% of the patients. Choosing pharmacy for initial treatment (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 5.217), unskilled occupation (aOR = 3.717), female gender (aOR = 3.467), previously not heard about TB (aOR = 3.410), and lower education level (aOR = 2.774) were the independent predictors of the patient delay. Visiting two or more doctors (aOR = 5.855) and initially visiting a doctor of undergraduate qualification (aOR = 3.650) were the independent predictors of health-care system delay. The diagnosis in private sector (aOR = 8.989), not being admitted (aOR = 3.441), and age above 60 years (aOR = 0.394) was the independent predictors of treatment delay. Conclusion: Initial treatment from pharmacy, consulting multiple physicians, and diagnosis by private sector cause significant delay in diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary TB.
  792 142 -
Breakthrough infection with SARS-CoV-2 delta variant in old-age homes in a Southern District of Kerala, India
Dhanusha Chandran, Easwaran Sreekumar, Kannamkottapilly Chandrasekharan Prajitha, Anisha Sharahudeen, Chithra Latha Raveendran, Research team
November 2022, 66(5):36-40
Background: The incidence of breakthrough infection with the emergence of new variants of concern of SARS-CoV-2 is posing a threat, and it is pertinent to understand the role of vaccines in protecting the elderly and people with comorbidities. Objective: The present study was undertaken to understand the natural history of SARS-CoV-2 infection in a closed cohort of the elderly population in an old-age home who have received two doses of COVID-19 vaccination. The study has also undertaken genomic sequencing to identify SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern from an academic perspective. Materials and Methods: A prospective observational study was conducted from March to August 2021 among residents of 11 old-age homes in Kerala who were vaccinated with 2 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, from 2 weeks following vaccination. Samples with a threshold cycle value of <25 were subjected to targeted sequencing of the spike protein receptor-binding domain coding region. Results: Among the 479 vaccinated individuals, 86 (17.95%) turned positive during the follow-up period. The mean duration of symptoms was 3–5 days, and no hospitalization was required. A phylogenetic analysis of the nucleotide sequences from the samples indicated B.1.617.2 lineage representing the Delta strain. Conclusion: The evidence supports maximizing the vaccine coverage among vulnerable groups to prevent hospitalization and death rate on the verge of the emergence of new variants of SARS-CoV-2.
  828 94 -
Tuberculosis case notification by registered private medical practitioners in Kolkata: A mixed-methods study
Vineeta Shukla, Sanghamitra Maulik, Mausumi Basu, Meghna Mukherjee
November 2022, 66(5):45-50
Background: Under-notification of tuberculosis (TB) cases remains a persistent problem that impedes accurate estimation of the disease burden. India's private health sector contributes to only one-fourth of the total TB notifications. Objectives: The present study was conducted among registered private practitioners in Kolkata to assess their knowledge, attitude and practice on TB notification, to find the socio-demographic and work-related factors associated with it, to identify the barriers faced by them in notifying TB cases and to elicit suggested solutions in overcoming these barriers. Materials and Methods: It was an observational study, cross-sectional in design following explanatory sequential mixed-methods approach conducted among 426 private practitioners in Kolkata Municipal Corporation area over 2 years (July 2019–October 2021). Quantitative data were analyzed using SPSS 25.0 with suitable descriptive and inferential statistics. Qualitative data were analyzed using Atlas.ti 7.1 and data were represented in the form of themes, codes, and verbatims. Results: Out of 426, 295 (69.2%) of the study population had adequate knowledge, 385 (90.4%) had positive attitude and only 115 (27.0%) had satisfactory practice. Lack of awareness, inadequate communication, and breaching patient confidentiality were the main barriers identified. Suggested solutions to improve engagement of private sector were organizing more continuing medical educations, active case finding, and acknowledgement to private practitioners on notification. Conclusion: Private practitioners had adequate knowledge on TB notification, their attitude was very positive but practice was poor. Training and sensitization of private practitioners on notification are recommended with feedback from both ends.
  786 109 -