Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) related research proposals approved by Nepal Health Research Council :

 

Title: A nationwide online survey of psycho-social impact on Nepalese population due to COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown.

Summary: A novel disease COVID-19, which evolved in Wuhan, China in December 2019, has spread throughout the world infecting 2,719,897 people and causing 187,705 deaths, till April 25 (WHO 2020). The pandemic is causing heightened level of concern and massive public reaction as it continues to hamper multiple aspects of peoples’ lives (Roy et al. 2020). Implementation of strict social distancing and quarantine is frustrating people with boredom, lack of supplies, inadequate information, and socio-economic disruption (Brooks et al. 2020). By 25 April 2020, Nepal had 49 cases of confirmed COVID-19 with no mortality (WHO 2020). But public concern is increasing with recent rise in number of cases and fear of impending epidemic. The lock-down has affected the socio-economic aspects of peoples’ lives causing financial loss, health insecurity, and social distancing. Recent evidence suggests that individuals who are quarantined and kept in isolation are significantly distressed because of anxiety, anger, confusion, and post-traumatic stress symptoms (Brooks et al. 2020). “Visit Nepal 2020” was about to take a leaping to attract over two million tourists from different parts of the world when this pandemic set in. 222,389 Nepalese and 143,047 tourists including 15,454 and 13,555 from China and COVID-19 affected European countries respectively came in Nepal, via the international airport, from January to February 2020 (Department of Immigration 2020). Additionally, a large number of Nepalese migrant workers returned from India, through open borders. It has increased not only the risk of spread of infection throughout the country, but also the level of anxiety in public. The current situation warrants the assessment of psychological state of the general population and its predictors to plan for the mitigating measures. Literature suggests that any disaster-related trauma is likely to cause psychological distress in the presence of psychiatric history(Alvarez et al. 2005, Cukor et al. 2010), also evident by significant level of distress post-earthquake in Nepal in 2015 (Kane et al. 2017). So, it is also important to identify people with pre-existing poor mental health who would require extra support during quarantine. Hence, we plan to conduct a study to measure and analyze the impact of this situation. This study plans to conduct cross-sectional study via online survey using non-probability snowball sampling and a questionnaire which asks for socio-demographic information and COVID-19 Peritraumatic Distress Index (CPDI), developed, and validated in China (Qiu et al. 2020). This study aims to assess psychological impact of COVID-19 and screen the vulnerable group of people allowing focused intervention.

 

Title: Knowledge of novel corona virus disease (COVID-19) among dental surgeons of Nepal.

Summary: Corona virus disease (COVID-19) is an emerging respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus.1 It was first reported to World Health Organization (WHO) country office in China from Wuhan city, China on 31 December 2019.1 The highly infectious disease has infected more than 2.8 million people with worldwide case fatality rate 7.07% and spreading to 213 countries around the world.2 WHO declared this outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International concern on 30 January 2020.2 COVID-19 is largely spread by human-to-human transmission through droplet infection with some cases of feco-oral and direct transmission.3 The incubation period is 2-14 days.3 The main clinical symptoms include fever, dry cough, fatigue, myalgia and dyspnea. There is no any antiviral treatment or vaccine recommended for COVID-19. Hence, WHO along with national and international health agencies has highly recommended the preventive strategies like social distancing and lockdown. Despite such stringent global efforts, the numbers of cases are increasing day by day. This has lead to increased load to medical doctors and nurses to combat this pandemic. Now it is seen that the available health facilities and medical doctors are running short and dental doctors are being called upon to deal with the pandemic.4, 5 The doctor patient ratio of Nepal is 0•17 per 1000 population—substantially less than the WHO recommendation of 2•3 doctors per 1000 population.6 The number of COVID-19 cases are increasing in Nepal as well. If the medical doctor runs short in Nepal to deal with COVID-19, then dental surgeons might be of significant support to deal with this pandemic. Dental surgeons are the most efficiently trained doctors regarding the medical diseases after medical doctors as they share a common curriculum of three years out of the 5.5 years. There are many online training manuals by WHO and different health agencies to prepare all health care professionals for COVID-19.7There is no any study assessing the knowledge of dental surgeons regarding COVID-19. Hence, this study is conducted to assess the knowledge of COVID-19 among dental surgeons of Nepal.

 

Title: Evaluation of knowledge and perception of general public on use of face masks during Covid-19 pandemic.

Summary: Covid-19 pandemic is prevalent worldwide. More than 2.5 million cases have been detected and more than 1.85 lack people died due to coronavirus infection. The cases are increasing day by days. Various methods were recommended to prevent the spread of coronavirus. One among them is covering the face with face mask. Hence, the study is planned to study the knowledge and perception of general public on use of face mask during covid-19 pandemic. Structured interview will be conducted with self-developed questionnaire. Study will be conducted in Dharan. Around 80 respondents will be interviewed, selected by convenience sampling. Response from interview will be entered into SPSS and will be analyzed. Ethical approval will be obtained from NHRC. Result from this study will be published in peer reviewed journal.

 

Title: Front-line healthcare worker perception and willingness to work during COVID-19 pandemic in Nepal: A cross-sectional web-based study.

Summary: Currently, the COVID-19 is a global pandemic, the outbreak was first detected in Wuhan, Hubei Province of China, in December 2019 and spread all over the world. Healthcare providers are the key actors and front-liners to tackle this pandemic. Their willingness to work during the crisis is very important to mitigate the present and future crises. The studies on the factors associated with healthcare workers willing to work during the outbreak are limited and findings available are not consistent. Despite all the global efforts at addressing this pandemic, the infection is spreading day by day across the world. There is a clear need to keep the willingness of the frontline healthcare workers to minimize the impact of the pandemic. As of April 19, Nepal observed 31 cases of the COVID-19 without any fatality. The government and the key stakeholders are trying their best to prevent the spread of infection and manage existing cases. Further, the government is also trying to motivate front-line health workers; however, whether the government approach of motivation encouraged the front-liners or not is an important issue that has not been assessed yet. Therefore, this study aims to investigate the contextual factors associated with the perception and willingness of front-line healthcare workers and try to give useful lessons for the prevention and management of future similar outbreaks. A web-based cross-sectional study with a quantitative, analytical, nonintervention design will be conducted. The sample size of the study will be 385 participants. A set of closed-ended self- administered questionnaires will be distributed through the web among the frontline healthcare workers working in Nepal. Data will be imported and analysis will be done by using SPSS 22. Analysis, such as frequencies and tabulations will be computed to assess the respondent characteristics through the distribution-free method. Cross tabulation and chi-square tests will be performed to determine the association. The study results will be shared with concerned public health authorities or published in scientific journals. The tentative duration of data collection will be 15 days and the budget for the study is about NRS 7750. This is a web-based research and all members of the team agreed to contribute voluntarily.

 

Title:Knowledge, attitude and practice of COVID-19 among the general public in Nepal. A cross-sectional online survey

Summary :
The year 2020 has started with a rapid, global pandemic of the virus Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, Corona Virus (SARS-CoV-2), causing the disease Coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19). There are still many questions to investigate all aspects of SARS-Cov-2 virology, epidemiology and its treatment. The world is in a state of complete lockdown to prevent the transmission of the virus. The behaviour of general public will prbably have an importnat influence on the course of the COVID pandemic. The entire world is frightened and not only the pfysical health but the mental health of the community is also distrupted. All aspects of world’s economic growth, sense of security, health care system, trade, tourism, global harmony has been challeneged. Nepal is no exception and is equally affected by this recent outbreak of COVID-19. This study being conducted to access the awareness of COVID 19 among a convenience sample of general public in Nepal.

 

Title: An assessment of mental health status among fever clinic attendants in Nepal during COVID-19 pandemics: a cross-sectional study.

Summary: COVID 19 pandemic has been creating a panic and distressing situation among the entire population globally including Nepal. Due to the weak national health system and government’s poor preparedness to address the crisis, all segments of population are vulnerable to Corona disease. Beyond the health concern, the middle and low-income group population particularly the daily labor workers are seriously affected losing their jobs/employment, restricted mobility and freedom due to lockdown across the country. Moreover, the fear of disease susceptibility, poor risk communication and unhelpful rumors by social media has been creating further terror which may have negative mental health impact among general public. This study aims to evaluate the mental health status (psychosocial distress/anxiety disorder) among the fever clinic attendants with the symptoms of COVID – 19. A sample of 680 fever clinic attendants from the selected hospitals across the country will be interviewed through telephone using a semi-structured questionnaire along with a validated psychometric tool, Depression, Anxiety and Stress (DASS – 21). The various metrics and scores of symptoms and their severity will be created and analyzed. Both descriptive and inferential statistical methods will be used to determine the mental health status of the survey participants. The study will be conducted between April to December 2020. The result will be disseminated through journal publication.

 

Title: Factors associated with fear, anxiety, depression and insomnia among health workers in Nepal during COVID-19 pandemic.

Summary: Health care workers on the front line who are directly involved in the screening, diagnosis, treatment, and care of patients with COVID-19 are at risk of developing psychological distress such as anxiety, depression, insomnia related symptoms and other mental health symptoms. The ever-increasing number of confirmed and suspected cases, overwhelming workload, depletion of personal protection equipment, widespread media coverage, lack of specific drugs, and feeling of being inadequately supported may all contribute to the mental burden of these health care workers. Studies done earlier on similar circumstances have reported adverse psychological reactions to the 2003 SARS outbreak among health care workers. The effects on the family and lifestyle of staff were substantial, highlighting the need for greater personal and family support. The aim of the current study is to evaluate mental health outcomes among health care workers who are at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 by quantifying the magnitude of symptoms of depression, anxiety, insomnia, fear and stress and by analyzing potential risk factors associated with these symptoms. The study design for this study will be cross-sectional. This study will be conducted among health workers working in selected hospitals designated for COVID-management. The data collection tool for the study is 14-item Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS; 0- 21), 7-item Insomnia Severity Index (0-28) and Psychometric properties of the Fear of COVID-19 Scale (7 item).

 

Title: Status of Anxiety, Depression and Social Discrimination among quarantined labor migrant following global pandemic of Covid 19 in Karnali province: A Mixed Method Study.

Summary: Anxiety, depression and social discrimination have been widely reported among migrant labors. In the present context, most of the migrant workers have forced to return their country. In Karnali province, labor specially goes to India as seasonal migrant labor. After the global declaration of pandemic of COVID-19, these migrants return to country. With the government decision to lock down following 14 days mandatory quarantine for migrants coming in recent week. There have been several quarantines set up. In this study, we aim to explore the status of anxiety, depression and social discrimination among the quarantined labor migrants. The study will be mixed method involving survey and IDI tools. More than 100 participants will be taken in survey and more than 11 will be taken in IDI interview after their consent. The pre validated BDI and BAI tools will be used in the study. The data collection will be done in local Nepali language. The in-depth interview will be recorded and transcribed. The transcription will be translated into English. The thematic analysis and content analysis will be done. The findings of the study will be published into international journal. The study findings are expected to fulfill the gap in the field of epidemiology management, public health, mental health and social sciences research.

 

Title: Perceived Risk of COVID-19 and Psychological Distress among Health Workers during COVID-19 Pandemic in Nepal: An Online Survey.

Summary: The emergence of the COVID-19 and its consequences has led to fears, worries, and anxiety among individuals worldwide. The outbreak of COVID-19 has laid unprecedented psychological stress on health workers. Medical workers have been facing enormous pressure, including a high risk of infection and inadequate protection, overwork, frustration which is causing different mental health problems such as stress, anxiety, depressive symptoms, and fear. Very little is known about the perceived risk of COVID-19, fear and psychological distress among the healthcare workers during the emergency of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Measuring and understanding mental health aspect of health workers is essential to fight COVID-19 in long turn. Thus, the study aims to find out the status of perceived risk of COVID-19, fear and psychological distress, and associated factors among healthcare workers in Nepal during COVID-19 Pandemic. A cross sectional study will be conducted among 422 health workers currently working in Nepal. Online survey questionnaire will be prepared in Google drive sent to the respondents through email and social media. The structured questionnaire consists of the demographic information, contact history with COVID-19 in the past 14 days, precautionary measures against covid-19 in the past 14 days, enabling environment, perceived risk of COVID-19, fear and psychological distress. Standard scales will be used to measure perceived risk of COVID-19, fear and psychological distress. Descriptive statistics, bivariate and multivariate analysis will be performed at 5% level of significance. This study will reveal the magnitude of perceived risk, fear and psychological distress, and associated factors among health workers currently working in Nepal during the emergency of COVID-19 pandemic. This information may help indirectly for intervention to address mental health of all health workers.

 

Title: Perception of people on COVID-19 and its impact on psychosocial wellbeing during COVID-19 pandemic in Nepal.

Summary: The recent Corona virus infection termed as COVID-19 has been declared as pandemic by World Health Organization. The number of infected individuals and deaths from COVID-19 has been increasing daily worldwide. WHO has labeled COVID-19 as an emerging respiratory disease (Torales et al., 2020). Studies have been conducted on COVID-19 in relation to pathogenesis, mode of transmission, symptoms and consequences and treatment. A neuropsychiatric linkage between the outbreak of acute respiratory infections and mental disorders has been established which date back to the prevalence of influenza and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) that took place years ago. The limited knowledge of the COVID-19 and the overwhelming news may lead to anxiety and fear in the public (Shigemura et al., 2020; Bao et al., 2020). The public at large may also experience boredom, disappointment, and irritability under the isolation measures (Brooks et al., 2020). The COVID-19 epidemic has caused serious threats to people’s physical health and lives. It has also triggered a wide variety of psychological problems, such as panic disorder, anxiety and depression (Qiu J et al., 2020). It has already been warned that mental health epidemic will subsequently follow the COVID-19 pandemic. Mental health and psychosocial impacts of COVID-19 has been underrepresented and understudied globally. Similarly, COVID-19 has been perceived in various ways by people. There is a dearth of studies on perception of people on COVID-19 and mental health and psychosocial impacts of COVID-19 in Nepal. The main purpose of this study is to identify the perception of people on COVID-19 and its impact on psychosocial wellbeing of people. A short questionnaire will be developed after consulting stakeholders such as health workers, researcher and academicians. After that a program will be developed on Microsoft forms to generate an online link for questionnaire. The online link will be shared over social media. It contains the objective of the survey, request for participation and consent. The message also contains the request to share the link in their own social network. The result will be disseminate through national media, social media and peer review publications.

 

Title: Knowledge and attitude towards COVID-19 among healthcare workers working in Seti Provincial Hospital of Sudurpaschim Province.

Summary: The novel corona virus (COVID-19) cause various symptoms such as pneumonia, fever, breathing difficult and lung infection. Till now, total 9 cases are reported in Nepal and 4 cases from this province. Accordingly, the emergence of this infectious disease has caused much anxiety within the population across Nepal due to the increasing number of suspected cases and the virus’ unpredictable future. Currently, there is no specific antiviral treatment and preventive vaccine. Therefore, the guidelines are recommended to decline the spread of infection and respond to the challenges during the epidemic. As CDC recommends, coronavirus spreads mainly from person-to-person by close contact (within about 6 feet) with infected people via respiratory (coughs or sneezes) or transmitted by touching a surface or object that the virus on it. In terms of symptoms, the WHO reported that more than 80% of COVID-19 patients showed mild symptoms and recovered without any medical intervention, approximately 20% of infected cases had a severe illness such as shortness of breath, septic shock and multi-organ failure, and it has been reported that an estimated 2% of cases can be fatal. The risk of increased severity was noticed in the elderly and with underlying chronic diseases. The best prevention is to avoid being exposed to COVID-19. This is done by washing hands with soap and water, and using face masks, isolating confirmed and suspected cases. In addition, healthcare workers (HCWs) are at a high risk of getting the infection and the source of transmission in the community. Some previous studies showed that HCWs had a lack of knowledge and attitude toward MERS CoV [9,10], and SARS[11]. Seti Provincial hospital is one of the largest hospitals in Sudurpaschim Province with specialist service, so that the response to major medical issues are available to all patients. It is also responsible for training and research, as well as supporting the medical workers to treat the suspected cases of COVID-19 infection in this province. Due to the importance of this facility, and from evidence obtained from Wuhan in China, USA, Spain and Italy that HCWs were at a high risk of getting the virus within medical facilities and also transmission to other patients within the community. Thousands of health workers across the Asia-Pacific region are risking their lives on the frontlines as they battle the coronavirus pandemic. According to data compiled by Anadolu Agency, at least 3,505 health workers in the region have tested positive for the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19, while 789 medical staff are undergoing 14-day self-quarantines after suspected exposure. At least 35 doctors died across the region after being infected by the virus, which claimed more than 60,000 lives across the globe. Thus the study helps to assess the knowledge and attitude towards COVID-19 among HCWs at Seti Provincial Hospital in Sudurpaschim Province.

 

Title: Impact in health choices of families in Nepal during COVID-19 Quarantine.

Summary: To study the Impact of COVID-19 quarantine on Health Choices of Families in Nepal. Specific objectives: To identify the different domains of health-related activity that have been affected due to being quarantined To assess if the psychological health of the quarantined families is affected by the extended lockdown as suggested by various literature. To assess if self-care practices (Meditation, Journaling, Exercise routines, Sleep duration) that affect the mental and physical health of individuals is compromised. To assess the change in diet. To assess the perceived accessibility to healthcare during the quarantine period. To assess healthcare utilization during the quarantine period. Methodology: This will be a cross-sectional online questionnaire-based study conducted via email using a google form to compare the health choices of families before and after lockdown and determine the impact of quarantine in health choices of families living in quarantine. We will have a questionnaire containing questions from various validated questionnaires from previous studies done during the quarantine period in different parts of the world. Convenience sampling will be used. Data Collection: Our pre-test participants and members of the research team will be excluded during the sampling. Convenience sampling will be done. Informed written consent will be obtained from respondents via the first page of the google form and also a separate email will be sent with the attached consent form to each participant. A self-administered questionnaire will be sent via an email to be filled up by the participants for data collection. Plan for analysis: Data will be analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20.0. We will use percentages for the analysis of quantitative data when describing the respondent demographics. In an analysis of health choices, we will Shapiro-Wilk to assess the normality of the respective data. We plan to use Independent t-test for parametric data and Mann-Whitney test for non-parametric data to compare health choices in relation to qualification, age, number of family members staying together or living away from the family. Intended Uses: We plan to identify the impact of the extended quarantine on the health choices of families of Nepal. These research findings can be used to plan a bigger study to further classify the compromises that people living in quarantine are making, especially the ones that are directly impacting their health. That can also guide the discussion on compensation provided to the quarantined population.

 

Title: Work Place Stress and Anxiety among Medical Doctors of Nepal during COVID-19 Pandemic.

Summary: Corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome corona virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei, China, in December 2019. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020 and recognized it as a pandemic on 11 March. As of 31 March 2020, more than 786,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in 200 countries and territories, resulting in approximately 37,500 deaths. WHO has categorized Nepal as a high-risk country for COVID-19 outbreak. According to the data shared by the Ministry of Health and Population, out of 993 samples tested there are total 5 positive cases among which one case has recovered and 4 are in isolation as of 31st March 2020. In the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, frontline health care workers around the world are facing anxiety and fear as a number of COVID-19 cases has started increasing. World statistics shows that health care workers are prone to contracting the virus. According to Italian Association of Doctors 61 Italian doctors have died during corona virus crisis. Like many other nations, the Nepalese medical fraternity who has to be in the frontline are worried and expressed their concern regarding nation’s capacity for preparedness and clinical response to potential COVID-19 outbreak in Nepal. According to medical doctors, the biggest threat posed by this disease, which originated in Wuhan, is that people infected with the novel corona virus (2019-nCoV) may not always develop symptoms of illness. As Nepal does not have adequate testing kits, resource allocation, preventive measures including personal protective equipment for frontline healthcare workers, and a step-wise clinical response to suspected or confirmed cases. The everyday increase of COVID-19 cases globally with high fatality rate, medical doctors have been experiencing psychological problems like stress and anxiety. The aim of this study is to assess the stress and anxiety among medical doctors of Nepal during COVID-19 pandemic using Perceived stress Scale (PSS) and Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A). The data will be collected using online survey method (google forms). Online forms will be sent to medical doctors via email or social media. Confidentiality will be maintained throughout the data collection period by coding. Data obtained will be evaluated with SPSS and appropriate statistical tools will be applied. The result obtained will be presented and disseminated in related programs so as to facilitate the concerned authority to take necessary action. The research will be published in peer reviewed journal.

 

Title: Knowledge, Attitude and Practice of healthcare workers in Nepal towards Corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Summary: Healthcare workers are frontline for management of suspected and potential cases of the corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Their knowledge, attitude and practice will likely have an important bearing on the course and containment of the COVID-19. The study will be conducted with the aim to determine knowledge, attitude and practice of healthcare workers towards corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. An online survey method (Google forms) will be used to collect data from eligible healthcare workers. Online forms will be sent out via email or social media to potential participants. All responses will be coded and personal identifiers will be kept confidential. Descriptive and inferential statistics will be used for data analysis. Final report will then be prepared using the analysed data. A final report will be submitted to NHRC for taking up further in policy making process. It will be submitted to a peer reviewed scientific journal for publication and dissemination. Ethical approval will be taken from NHRC.

 

Title: Mental health status among health care-givers during COVID-19 pandemic period in Nepal.

Summary: Health care-givers, especially those working in hospitals caring for people with confirmed or suspected COVID-19, are vulnerable to both high risk of infection and mental health problems. The objective of this study is to find mental health status among frontline health care-givers during the COVID-19 pandemic period in Nepal. Methods: It will be a multi-center cross-sectional study. It will be conducted in four teaching hospitals situated from east to west and urban to rural areas of Nepal. Frontline health care-givers will be interviewed with a self-reported structured questionnaire. Expected result: There is a high level of stress, anxiety, and depression among health care-givers. Based on experience from past outbreaks globally and the psychosocial impact of viral epidemics, the development and implementation of mental health assessment, support, treatment, and services are crucial.

 

Title: Prevalence and predictors of anxiety and depression amid COVID-19 pandemic among the respondents of online survey.

Summary: The world suffering from anxiety and depression is unexceptional. Depression is a common mental health illness which is different from usual mood fluctuations and short-lived emotional responses. Depression may become a serious health condition when it long last with moderate or severe intensity. A novel corona virus, formerly designated as 2019-nCoV and today taxonomically termed as SARS-CoV-2, which is emerged in Wuhan city of China on December 2019 and is rapidly spreading in many countries in the World. This new disease (Covid-19) has already been a global pandemic. During the course of epidemic, people go through the different stress level, but the mitigation activities overlook the need of management of this mental chaos which later may results to the post-traumatic stress disorder. This study aims to generate evidence on the prevalence of anxiety and depression among general population and also identify the potential predicators for anxiety and depression during lockdown in Nepal due to COVID-19 pandemic. Quantitative method is planned for this study. Online cross sectional design is planned for this study. The total sample size is 540. Convenient sampling will be used. The system will be set in such a way that one participant can only submit one form with one Google account. We have developed the structured questionnaire that consists of four sections: socio-demographic, exposure to media, anxiety and depression. Anxiety and depression will be measured using Generalized Anxiety Disorder Assessment (GAD-7), and Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) is a self-administrated questionnaires. All the data will be exported to SPSS 20 for cleaning and analysis purpose. Descriptive statistics will be used and relevant test will be applied. Research brief will be developed and distributed among the concerned stakeholders and manuscript will be submitted in peer-reviewed articles. This will determine the magnitude of anxiety and depression and its predictors. It will help to develop the psychosocial interventions to cope with the psychosocial challenges.

 

 

Title: Anxiety, Depression and Functional impairment during COVID-19 Pandemic among employees of Hospital for Children Eye ENT and Rehabilitation Services, Bhaktapur.

Summary: COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered corona virus which is being pandemic with more than 338 thousand cases world-wide, having 13% fatality rate among the closed cases and 5% serious or critical among active cases. Rapidly increased numbers of cases and deaths from COVID 19 in the world, both medical staff and the public have been experiencing psychological problems, including anxiety, depression, and stress. One of the most stressful situations is the unpredictability of the situation and the uncertainty of when to control the disease and the seriousness of the risk. The geometric increase in the global cases of COVID-19 cases with high fatality rate may also have increased mental health problem in the people working ENT hospital. So the aim of this study is to find out the burden of stress anxiety and Depression among all employees of Hospital for Eye ENT and Rehabilitation Services using hospital using Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and WHO Disability Assessment Schedule (WHODAS2.0). The data will be collected using a google form developed for this study among the participants who have email and internet access and face to face interview among the participants who do not have email and internet access. The collected data will be checked for incompleteness daily and will be entered in EpiData 3.1 provided with checks to avoid possible data entry error. The data then will be transferred into Statistical Package for Social Science version 24 for univariate, bivariate and multivariate analysis. The expected outcome of this study is the point prevalence of stress anxiety and depression among the employees of Hospital for Eye ENT and Rehabilitation Services during COVID-19 pandemic and the findings of this study will be used to plan the activities to decrease the anxiety and depression during such epidemic and other similar type of disaster in the study site and other similar settings.

 

Title: Assessment of service availability and Infection prevention status of hospitals in Nepal in the context of possible COVID-19 case management need.

Summary: The World Health Organization has categorized Nepal as a high-risk country for COVID-19 outbreak. However, as of March 22, Nepal has detected only one case, in early January, which improved and got discharged after few days of treatment at Sukraraj Tropical & Infectious Diseases Hospital, Teku, Kathmandu. According to the data share by Health Emergency Operation Center (HEOC) housed at the Ministry of Health and Population, only 572 respiratory specimens from COVID-19 suspected cases have been tested by the National Public Health Laboratory (NPHL) as of 22 March 2020, of which all specimens except one has tested negative. As with other countries, the Nepalese medical fraternity has also expressed their concerns regarding nation’s capacity for preparedness and clinical response to potential COVID-19 outbreak in Nepal. They are particularly concerned about the government’s weak outbreak preparation strategies, for example testing capacity, resource allocation, preventive measures including protective equipment for frontline healthcare workers, and a step-wise clinical response to suspected or confirmed cases. Using various social media platforms, a number of clinicians have shared their personal and institutional experiences of pandemic preparedness at local level. Every hour, new data and evidence on COVID-19 disease are being generated and published from hard-hit countries. However, Nepalese health systems has neither reported new cases not developed dataset on the socio-demographic, risk factor, and clinical-laboratory profile of suspected COVID-19 cases. Moreover, there is a lack of uniform data and information regarding the actual preparedness and response strategies and practices that have been adopted by both public and private hospitals in Nepal. Clinicians working in various hospitals of Nepal (medical students, interns, medical officers, resident trainees, specialists and above), who are standby at the frontline to manage suspected and potential cases of COVID-19, will be requested to provide facts and information from the ground. The hospitals they would represent will be categorized into three types – Small: 15 or fewer beds, for example, PHC; Medium: 15-50 beds, for example, district hospitals, polyclinics, community hospital; and Large: >50 beds, for example, medical colleges, zonal hospitals, public/private tertiary referral centers. The study will collect information from 114 hospitals located in 7 provinces of Nepal. Small, medium and large hospitals (5 each) will be selected from each of six provinces: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, and 7 (total 90). In the case of province 3 (the largest in terms of population), we will collect information from 5 small, 5 medium, and 15 large hospitals (total 25). An online survey method (Google forms) will be used to collect data from eligible clinicians. Online forms will be sent out via email or social media to potential participants. All responses will be coded and personal identifiers will be kept confidential. Descriptive and inferential statistics will be used for data analysis. Ethical approval will be taken from NHRC.

Title: Knowledge and perception on Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) among the general public in Nepal: A Cross-Sectional Online Survey

Summary:
The behavior of the general public will likely have an important bearing on the course of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) epidemic. Human behavior is influenced by people’s knowledge and perceptions. The study will be conducted with the aim to determine knowledge and pereption of Covid-19 among the general public in Nepal. A cross-sectional study will be conducted. A sample of 400 adults residing in Nepal who are representative of the general population by age, sex, and education will be the study population. These findings might guide information campaigns by public health authorities, clinicians, and the media. Rapid online surveys could be an important tool in tracking the public’s knowledge and misperceptions of Covid-19 over time.