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COVID-19: Original Article
Body mass index and prevalence of metabolic syndrome among Korean adults before and after the COVID-19 outbreak: a retrospective longitudinal study
Joo-Eun Jeong, Hoon-Ki Park, Hwan-Sik Hwang, Kye-Yeung Park, Myoung-Hye Lee, Seon-Hi Shin, Nayeon Choi
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023081.   Published online August 29, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023081
  • 4,950 View
  • 119 Download
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
Studies evaluating weight changes during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic have yielded inconsistent results, and most of those studies were based on self-reported anthropometric measures. We investigated changes in body mass index (BMI), professionally measured waist circumference (WC), and metabolic syndrome components from before to during the pandemic in a sample of the adult population in Korea.
METHODS
This retrospective study included 1,118 male and female (age≥18 years) who underwent health checkups at a university medical center between January 1, 2016 and March 31, 2022. Changes in BMI, lifestyles, and metabolic syndrome components during the pandemic were analyzed using the paired t-test, McNemar test, generalized estimating equations, and repeated-measures analysis of variance.
RESULTS
Changes in body weight, BMI, and body fat percentage during the pandemic were not clinically significant. However, statistically significant results were found for decreased physical activity (p<0.001) and WC (p<0.001), and exacerbation of all metabolic syndrome components (except serum triglyceride levels). Moreover, the metabolic syndrome prevalence increased significantly from 20.2% to 31.2% during the pandemic (p<0.001). The prevalence of abdominal obesity and high fasting blood glucose levels also significantly increased from 2019 to 2021.
CONCLUSIONS
Metabolic syndrome, its components, and fat distribution worsened significantly after the implementation of social distancing and lockdowns, despite no clinically significant changes in body weight and BMI. Further studies on the post- pandemic period should investigate the long-term impact of social lockdowns on BMI and the prevalence of metabolic syndrome.
Summary
Korean summary
본 연구에서는 한국인 성인들의 코로나 팬대믹으로 인한 사회적 거리 두기, 봉쇄 정책 전 후의 체질량지수, 생활습관, 그리고 대사증후군과 그 구성 요소들의 변화를 건강검진을 통해 측정한 객관적인 지표의 변화를 통해 알아보고자 하였다. 연구 결과, 사회적 거리 두기 및 봉쇄 전후의 체질량지수와 체중은 유의미한 변화가 없었으나, 신체 활동량은 유의미하게 감소하였고, 체지방률, 허리둘레가 늘어났다. 그리고 중성지방을 제외하고 다른 대사증후군의 구성 요소인 혈압, 고밀도지단백 콜레스테롤, 공복혈당 지표는 악화되었다. 하위 그룹 분석에서 매년 검진을 시행 받은 대상자들 및 고혈압, 당뇨병, 이상지질혈증 약을 복용하지 않는 대상자들의 코로나-19 전후 연도별 대사 지표의 변화를 분석한 결과, 복부비만 유병률과 공복 혈당의 증가 양상이 뚜렷하였다.
Key Message
Although there was no significant change in BMI and weight, the prevalence of metabolic syndrome, abdominal obesity, and fasting blood glucose level prominently worsened after the implementation of social distancing and lockdowns. Such findings may indicate deterioration of insulin resistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study provides valuable information for healthcare professionals, policymakers, and the general public towards mitigating the negative consequences of the pandemic on metabolic health, regardless of weight gain.
COVID-19: Original Article
Unequal burdens of COVID-19 infection: a nationwide cohort study of COVID-19-related health inequalities in Korea
Jeangeun Jeon, Jieun Park, Min-Hyeok Choi, Hongjo Choi, Myoung-Hee Kim
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023068.   Published online July 31, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023068
  • 2,786 View
  • 113 Download
  • 1 Web of Science
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
While the Korean government’s response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is considered effective given the relatively low mortality rate, issues of inequality have been insufficiently addressed. This study explored COVID-19-related health inequalities in Korea.
METHODS
Age standardization for various health inequality indices was derived using data from the Korean National Health Insurance Service, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency, and the Microdata Integrated Service of Statistics Korea. The slope index of inequality (SII) and relative index of inequality (RII) were calculated for socioeconomic variables, while absolute difference (AD) and relative difference (RD) were used for gender and disability inequalities.
RESULTS
We observed a number of COVID-19-related health outcome inequalities. Gender inequality was particularly noticeable in infection rates, with the rate of women 1.16 times higher than that of men. In contrast, socioeconomic inequality was evident in vaccination rates, with a 4.5-fold (SII, -4.519; 95% confidence interval, -7.403 to -1.634) difference between the highest and lowest household income groups. Regarding clinical progression post-infection, consistent findings indicated higher risk for men (RD for hospitalization, 0.90; severe cases, 0.54; and fatality, 0.65), individuals with disabilities (RD for hospitalization, 2.27; severe cases, 2.29; and fatality, 2.37), and those from lower socioeconomic groups (SII for hospitalization, 1.778; severe cases, 0.089; and fatality, 0.451).
CONCLUSIONS
While the infection risk was nearly ubiquitous, not everyone faced the same level of risk post-infection. To prevent further health inequalities, it is crucial to develop a thoughtful policy acknowledging individual health conditions and resources.
Summary
Korean summary
2020년 10월-2022년 4월까지의 국내 코로나-19 확진자 데이터와 건강보험 빅데이터, 사망등록통계를 연계하여 건강결과의 불평등 지표를 산출한 결과, 감염율, 백신접종율, 입원율, 중증화율, 치명률에서 소득수준(건강보험료 소득분위 기준), 성별, 장애유무에 따른 건강결과의 불평등이 확인되었다. 감염율은 여성이 남성보다 높았고, 백신접종율은 장애인과 의료급여 수급권자의 비율이 낮게 나타났고, 코로나-19로 인한 입원율과 중증화율, 치명율에서는 남성, 의료급여 수급권자, 장애인의 취약성이 두드러졌다. 본 연구의 분석결과는 국내 방역정책이 기존의 사회불평등을 충분하게 고려하지 못했을 가능성이 크며, 미래 감염병 관리 시 이를 고려하여 불평등을 완화시킬 수 있는 방향의 정책적 전략이 필요하다는 점을 시사한다.
Key Message
This study sought to investigate COVID-19-related health inequalities in Korea by linking COVID-19 registry data to the KNHIS big data and the cause of death data for the period October 2020 - April 2022. COVID-19-related health outcome inequalities were observed in infection, vaccination, hospitalization, clinical progress, and fatality by household income, gender, and disability. The infection rate was higher in women, the vaccination proportion was lower in the disabled and medical-aid beneficiaries, and men, the disabled and medical-aid beneficiaries were vulnerable in clinical progression post-infection which implies that a policy necessarily should consider existing socioeconomic inequalities for future pandemics.
COVID-19: Original Article
Changes in mental health service utilization before and during the COVID-19 pandemic: a nationwide database analysis in Korea
Kyoung Hoon Kim, Sang Min Lee, Minha Hong, Kyu-Man Han, Jong-Woo Paik
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023022.   Published online February 14, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023022
  • 6,189 View
  • 275 Download
  • 3 Web of Science
  • 1 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
The present study examined the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic on mental health service utilization through a comparative analysis of nationwide data regarding inpatient care users, outpatient visits, emergency department (ED) visits, and admissions via the ED before and during the pandemic.
METHODS
Data from approximately 350,000 Koreans diagnosed with mental illness were analyzed in terms of hospitalization, outpatient visits, and ED visits between January 2018 and June 2021. An interrupted time series analysis was conducted to determine the significance of changes in mental health service utilization indicators.
RESULTS
The number of hospital admissions per patient decreased by 1.2% at the start of the pandemic and 0.7% afterward. The length of hospital stay increased by 1.8% at the outbreak of the pandemic, and then decreased by 20.2%. Although the number of outpatients increased, the number of outpatient visits per patient decreased; the number of outpatient visits for schizophrenia (3.4%) and bipolar disorder (3.5%) significantly decreased immediately post-outbreak. The number of ED visits per patient decreased both immediately post-outbreak and afterward, and ED visits for schizophrenia (19.2%), bipolar disorder (22.3%), and depression (17.4%) decreased significantly immediately post-outbreak. Admissions via the ED did not show a significant change immediately post-outbreak.
CONCLUSIONS
Mental health service utilization increased during the pandemic, but medical service use decreased overall, with a particularly significant decrease in ED utilization. As the pandemic worsened, the decline in outpatient visits became more pronounced among those with severe mental illness.
Summary
Korean summary
이 연구는 COVID-19 전후 정신질환 의료서비스 이용 변화를 분석하였다. 팬데믹 기간 중에 정신질환 의료서비스는 전반적으로 감소하였고, 특히 중증 정신질환의 외래 방문이 감소하였다. 따라서, 정신질환자의 진료 연속성을 보장하기 위한 조치가 요구된다.
Key Message
This study examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health service utilization. The mental health service utilization decreased overall after the outbreak of COVID-19, especially outpatient visits for severe mental illness significantly decreased. Therefore, countermeasures are needed to maintain the continuity of care.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Adult Mental Health Presentations to Emergency Departments in Victoria, Australia between January 2018 and October 2020: Changes Associated with COVID-19 Pandemic Public Health Restrictions
    Jackson Newberry-Dupé, Wanyu Chu, Simon Craig, Rohan Borschmann, Gerard O’Reilly, Paul Yates, Glenn Melvin, Kylie King, Harriet Hiscock
    Psychiatric Quarterly.2024; 95(1): 33.     CrossRef
Original Article
Changes in the prevalence of metabolic syndrome in Korean adults after the COVID-19 outbreak
Ji-Young Kwon, Sang-Wook Song
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022101.   Published online November 5, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022101
  • 3,336 View
  • 93 Download
  • 2 Web of Science
  • 2 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDF
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
This study sought to reveal changes in the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) after the start of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and to identify the groups showing the greatest changes.
METHODS
We compared the prevalence of MetS between 2017–2019 (i.e., the 3-year period before the COVID-19 pandemic) and soon after the initial outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020 among 24,564 adults ≥ 19 years of age using data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
RESULTS
The prevalence of MetS increased steadily between 2017 and 2020 (29.4 to 35.3%, p for trend < 0.001), with annual percent changes of 2.0%p, 2.2%p, and 1.7%p, respectively. Compared to 3 years before the COVID-19 pandemic, the prevalence of MetS significantly increased during the COVID-19 pandemic in males (6.2%p; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.5 to 8.9) compared to females (1.5%p; 95% CI, -1.2 to 4.1). The age groups with the greatest increases in MetS prevalence after the COVID-19 pandemic were those in their 40s (4.6%p; 95% CI, 0.9 to 8.4) and 50s (5.8%p; 95% CI, 2.2 to 9.4). By educational background, the increase in MetS prevalence was greatest among those with a college degree or higher (5.1%p). The prevalence of MetS in high-income (5.3%p) and low-income (4.6%p) groups significantly increased.
CONCLUSIONS
The increasing trend in the overall prevalence of MetS continued during the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the prevalence of MetS among adult males in their 40s and 50s increased significantly after the COVID-19 outbreak in Korea.
Summary

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Increasing incidence and prevalence of metabolic syndrome in people living with HIV during the COVID-19 pandemic
    Rebecka Papaioannu Borjesson, Laura Galli, Camilla Muccini, Andrea Poli, Tommaso Clemente, Martina Bottanelli, Nicola Gianotti, Silvia Nozza, Antonella Castagna, Vincenzo Spagnuolo
    Frontiers in Medicine.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Body mass index and prevalence of metabolic syndrome among Korean adults before and after the COVID-19 outbreak: a retrospective longitudinal study
    Joo-Eun Jeong, Hoon-Ki Park, Hwan-Sik Hwang, Kye-Yeung Park, Myoung-Hye Lee, Seon-Hi Shin, Nayeon Choi
    Epidemiology and Health.2023; 45: e2023081.     CrossRef
COVID-19: Special Article
Obesity, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and hypercholesterolemia in Korean adults before and during the COVID-19 pandemic: a special report of the 2020 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
Ga Bin Lee, Yoonjung Kim, Suyeon Park, Hyeon Chang Kim, Kyungwon Oh
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022041.   Published online April 25, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022041
  • 14,169 View
  • 625 Download
  • 12 Web of Science
  • 20 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
We investigated trends in obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia before and during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in the Korean adult population.
METHODS
Data from 60,098 participants in the Korea National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey between 2011 and 2020 aged ≥19 were used. The age-standardized prevalence and annual percent changes (APCs) were calculated for obesity (body mass index ≥25 kg/m2), hypertension (systolic/diastolic blood pressure ≥140/90 mmHg or under treatment), diabetes (hemoglobin A1c ≥6.5%, fasting glucose ≥126 mg/dL, physician diagnosis, or under treatment), and hypercholesterolemia (total cholesterol ≥240 mg/dL or under treatment).
RESULTS
Over the past decade (2011-2020), the age-standardized APCs (95% confidence intervals) for obesity, hypertension, diabetes and hypercholesterolemia were 3.0% (2.1 to 3.8), 0.1% (-1.3 to 1.5), 1.5% (-1.0 to 4.0) and 8.0% (5.7 to 10.3), respectively, in men; and -0.2% (-1.5 to 1.2), -0.5% (-1.9 to 0.9), -0.1% (-2.3 to 2.2) and 5.9% (3.9 to 8.0), respectively, in women. In 2020 compared to the previous 3 years (2017-2019), obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia increased in men (6.0, 1.8, 1.9, and 2.8%p, respectively), but an increase was not apparent in women (2.5, -1.1, 0.8, and 0.7%p, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS
An increase in major chronic diseases was observed in Korean adults, especially men, during the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to reduce the burden of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases in the future, effective intervention strategies need to be developed according to the characteristics of the target groups.
Summary
Korean summary
한국인의 비만, 고혈압, 당뇨 및 고지혈증 유병률은 지난 10년간 전반적으로 증가하는 경향을 보였다. 특히, 코로나 19가 유행한 2020년에 남성의 주요 만성질환 유병률은 지난 3년 평균치와 비교하였을 때 모두 유의하게 증가하였다. 반면, 여성에서 만성질환 유병률의 뚜렷한 증가는 관찰되지 않았다.
Key Message
During COVID-19 pandemic, the overall increase in major chronic diseases was observed in Korean adults, and this trend was prominent in men. Accordingly, target-specific intervention strategies need to be developed to reduce the burden of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases in the future.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Korea Hypertension Fact Sheet 2023: analysis of nationwide population-based data with a particular focus on hypertension in special populations
    Hyeon Chang Kim, Hokyou Lee, Hyeok-Hee Lee, Dasom Son, Minsung Cho, Sojung Shin, Yeeun Seo, Eun-Jin kim, Song Vogue Ahn, Sun Ha Jee, Sungha Park, Hae-Young Lee, Min Ho Shin, Sang-Hyun Ihm, Seung Won Lee, Jong Ku Park, Il Suh, Tae-Yong Lee
    Clinical Hypertension.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Factors associated with gastric and duodenal neuroendocrine tumors: A multicenter case-control study
    Kwangwoo Nam, Su Youn Nam, Jun Chul Park, Young Sin Cho, Hyuk Soon Choi, Kyoungwon Jung, Seon-Young Park, Joon Hyun Cho, Hyonho Chun
    Digestive and Liver Disease.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Association between Weight Change and Incidence of Dyslipidemia in Young Adults: A Retrospective Cohort Study of Korean Male Soldiers
    Joon-Young Yoon, Won Ju Park, Hee Kyung Kim, Ho-Cheol Kang, Cheol-Kyu Park, Wonsuk Choi
    Journal of Obesity & Metabolic Syndrome.2024; 33(1): 36.     CrossRef
  • Sleep Deficit as a Risk Factor for Hypertension in Korean Adults
    Mi-Joon Lee, Bum-Jeun Seo, Inmyung Song
    Sustainability.2023; 15(3): 2586.     CrossRef
  • Gene–Nutrient Interactions in Obesity: COBLL1 Genetic Variants Interact with Dietary Fat Intake to Modulate the Incidence of Obesity
    Junkyung Kwak, Dayeon Shin
    International Journal of Molecular Sciences.2023; 24(4): 3758.     CrossRef
  • Identifying the Associations of Nightly Fasting Duration and Meal Timing with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Using Data from the 2016–2020 Korea National Health and Nutrition Survey
    Junkyung Kwak, Kyeong-A Jang, Haeng-Ran Kim, Min-Sook Kang, Kyung Won Lee, Dayeon Shin
    Nutrients.2023; 15(6): 1385.     CrossRef
  • Changes in the Prevalences of Obesity, Abdominal Obesity, and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease among Korean Children during the COVID-19 Outbreak
    Kyungchul Song, Juyeon Yang, Hye Sun Lee, Su Jin Kim, Myeongseob Lee, Junghwan Suh, Ahreum Kwon, Ho-Seong Kim, Hyun Wook Chae
    Yonsei Medical Journal.2023; 64(4): 269.     CrossRef
  • Revisiting the Diabetes Crisis in Korea: Call for Urgent Action
    Jun Sung Moon
    The Journal of Korean Diabetes.2023; 24(1): 1.     CrossRef
  • Changes in dietary habits and chronic diseases before and after COVID-19 by regions using data from the 2018-2020 Korea Community Health Survey and Consumer Behavior Survey for Foods: a cross-sectional study
    Surim Park, Eun-hee Jang, Seungmin Lee
    Korean Journal of Community Nutrition.2023; 28(2): 124.     CrossRef
  • Trends in socioeconomic inequalities in obesity among Korean adolescents: the Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-based Survey (KYRBS) 2006 to 2020
    Eunji Kim, Ga Bin Lee, Dong Keon Yon, Hyeon Chang Kim
    Epidemiology and Health.2023; 45: e2023033.     CrossRef
  • Changes in food and nutrient intakes in Korean adults before and during the COVID-19 pandemic: data from the 2011-2020 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
    Kyungwon Oh, Suyeon Park, Sihyun Park, Sungha Yun, Hongseok Choi, Eun Kyeong Jeong
    Epidemiology and Health.2023; 45: e2023015.     CrossRef
  • Clinical Features and Visual Prognosis of Retinal Vein Occlusion in Those under 50 Years Old
    Soyeon Jung, Haeeun Shin, Hee Seung Chin
    Journal of the Korean Ophthalmological Society.2023; 64(6): 490.     CrossRef
  • Korea hypertension fact sheet 2022: analysis of nationwide population-based data with a special focus on hypertension in the elderly
    Hyeon Chang Kim, Hokyou Lee, Hyeok-Hee Lee, Gabin Lee, Eunji Kim, Moses Song, Jenny Moon, Yeeun Seo
    Clinical Hypertension.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
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    D.V. Korsunsky, S.A. Berns, A.R. Novikova, O.M. Drapkina
    Profilakticheskaya meditsina.2023; 26(8): 100.     CrossRef
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    Min-Jin Cho, Song-Yi Han, Soo Kyoung Lim, Eun-Ji Song, Young-Do Nam, Hojun Kim
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    Yoonjung Kim, Suyeon Park, Kyungwon Oh, Hongseok Choi, Eun Kyeong Jeong
    Epidemiology and Health.2023; 45: e2023014.     CrossRef
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    Hyeon Chang Kim
    Journal of the Korean Medical Association.2022; 65(10): 633.     CrossRef
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    Pius Kim, Hae Ran Kim
    Healthcare.2022; 10(10): 1912.     CrossRef
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    Ji-Young Kwon, Sang-Wook Song
    Epidemiology and Health.2022; 44: e2022101.     CrossRef
COVID-19: Original Article
The vaccination coverage rate in under-5 children in Nasiriyah, Iraq before and during the COVID-19 pandemic
Ali Rifaat Alhaddad, Elham Ahmadnezhad, Akbar Fotouhi
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022035.   Published online March 14, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022035
  • 8,633 View
  • 317 Download
  • 2 Web of Science
  • 2 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
Abstract
providOBJECTIVES: This study compared the vaccination coverage rate (VCR) in children under 5 years old in Nasiriyah, Iraq before and during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
METHODS
This cross-sectional study was conducted in the city of Nasiriyah in southeastern Iraq, with data collected from 79 primary healthcare facilities. This study evaluated the VCR in 3 periods (2018, 2019, and 2020) using multi-level random sampling. Pertinent data were extracted from the vaccination records of 598 children for Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG); pentavalent 1, 2, and 3; measles; and activated oral poliovirus vaccine 1 and 2. Missing data were completed by telephone calls to participants’ parents. Logistic regression was applied to compare and estimate the odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the association between VCR and related factors.
RESULTS
The data showed the greatest decline in the studied vaccines in 2020. Among the vaccines studied, BCG had the highest rate in all 3 periods (100% VCR) and measles had the lowest rate (83.7%), reaching 63.6% in 2020 (p<0.001). The highest OR among all types of vaccine were found for the pentavalent-3 vaccine among city dwellers and those born in 2020 (OR, 2.67; 95% CI, 1.39 to 5.10 and OR, 2.34; 95% CI, 1.28 to 4.28, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS
The VCR for children decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic in Iraq, and new health policies are needed to increase the coverage rate. Improving the knowledge and attitudes of parents, as well as removing barriers or risk factors, can also be effective in improving the VCR.
Summary
Key Message
Vaccination is one of the most important essential health services. COVID-19 pandemic has reduced the coverage of vaccination among under five.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Current Impact and Long-Term Influence of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Iraqi Healthcare Systems: A Case Study
    Taysir Al Janabi, Sunny Chung
    Epidemiologia.2022; 3(4): 412.     CrossRef
  • Dropout of Vaccination Among Iraqi Children
    Maha. A. Kadim, Anees Flayyih Abdulhasan, Zainab Abdulameer Abdulrasol, Ali Fadhil Obaid
    South Asian Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities.2022; 3(6): 163.     CrossRef
COVID-19: Original Article
Depression, anxiety, and stress in Korean general population during the COVID-19 pandemic
Hooyeon Lee, Dongwoo Choi, Jung Jae Lee
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022018.   Published online January 18, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022018
  • 14,602 View
  • 625 Download
  • 14 Web of Science
  • 15 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence and risk factors of poor mental health in the general Korean population during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
METHODS
This cross-sectional, population-based, online survey-based study was conducted from November 5 to 20, 2020 and included adults aged 20-49 years in Chungnam Province, Korea. A total of 549 adults were included.
RESULTS
In total, 18.8% of the participants had symptoms of depression, 10.6% had symptoms of anxiety, and 5.1% had a high level of perceived stress during the COVID-19 pandemic. Higher levels of stress (odds ratio [OR], 3.13; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.13 to 8.67), anxiety (OR, 2.33; 95% CI, 1.09 to 4.49), and depression (OR, 3.00; 95% CI, 1.64 to 5.50) were found among never married, widowed, divorced, and separated people than among married/cohabiting/partnered participants. Participants who felt increased stress at home during the COVID-19 outbreak reported more depression (OR, 2.45; 95% CI, 1.49 to 4.05) and anxiety (OR, 2.42; 95% CI, 1.31 to 4.50). Women had higher risks of anxiety (OR, 1.97; 95% CI, 1.09 to 3.58) and stress (OR, 6.40; 95% CI, 2.30 to 17.85) than men. Participants with the highest household income were less likely to report symptoms of stress than those with the lowest household income (OR, 0.24; 95% CI, 0.06 to 0.96).
CONCLUSIONS
The participants in this study exhibited poor mental health index scores, suggesting that some people are at risk for mental health problems during the COVID-19 pandemic. Being married was independently and significantly associated with a lower likelihood of depression, anxiety, and stress.
Summary
Korean summary
이 연구는 코로나-19 유행 기간 동안 정신건강 현황과 위험 요인을 알아보기 위한 단면연구이다. 코로나 19 유행 이후 가정내 스트레스가 증가했다고 응답한 경우 우울증과 불안감의 유병률이 높았다. 반면, 남성인 경우, 결혼했거나 동거인과 같이 살고 있는 경우에는 우울증, 불안 또는 스트레스의 유병률이 통계적으로 유의하게 낮았다. 마스크 착용하기, 비대면 활동 증가, 또는 사회적 거리두기 등 코로나 19의 유행을 통제하기 위한 많은 정책은 개인의 일상생활과 정신건강에 많은 영향을 미쳤다. 이 연구는 취약 집단을 발굴하고, 정신건강 회복을 위한 전략을 개발하는데 기초자료를 제공할 수 있다.
Key Message
This study revealed high prevalence rates of depression, anxiety, and stress in the general population of Korea aged 20-49 years during the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants who felt increased stress at home reported more depression and anxiety. Men and being married were significantly associated with a lower likelihood of depression, anxiety, or stress. The COVID-19 pandemic has been a traumatic event. In addi­tion, the policies created to prevent its spread have disrupted daily living for the general population. Implement­ing strategies to promote resilience and support psychologically vulnerable individuals during the COVID-19 cri­sis is of fundamental importance.

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