Publications by authors named "Alexander Adamson"

2 Publications

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The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Uptake of Influenza Vaccine: UK-Wide Observational Study.

JMIR Public Health Surveill 2021 Apr 14;7(4):e26734. Epub 2021 Apr 14.

National Heart & Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom.

Background: In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK National Health Service (NHS) extended eligibility for influenza vaccination this season to approximately 32.4 million people (48.8% of the population). Knowing the intended uptake of the vaccine will inform supply and public health messaging to maximize vaccination.

Objective: The objective of this study was to measure the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the acceptance of influenza vaccination in the 2020-2021 season, specifically focusing on people who were previously eligible but routinely declined vaccination and newly eligible people.

Methods: Intention to receive the influenza vaccine in 2020-2021 was asked of all registrants of the largest electronic personal health record in the NHS by a web-based questionnaire on July 31, 2020. Of those who were either newly or previously eligible but had not previously received an influenza vaccination, multivariable logistic regression and network diagrams were used to examine their reasons to undergo or decline vaccination.

Results: Among 6641 respondents, 945 (14.2%) were previously eligible but were not vaccinated; of these, 536 (56.7%) intended to receive an influenza vaccination in 2020-2021, as did 466 (68.6%) of the newly eligible respondents. Intention to receive the influenza vaccine was associated with increased age, index of multiple deprivation quintile, and considering oneself to be at high risk from COVID-19. Among those who were eligible but not intending to be vaccinated in 2020-2021, 164/543 (30.2%) gave reasons based on misinformation. Of the previously unvaccinated health care workers, 47/96 (49%) stated they would decline vaccination in 2020-2021.

Conclusions: In this sample, COVID-19 has increased acceptance of influenza vaccination in previously eligible but unvaccinated people and has motivated substantial uptake in newly eligible people. This study is essential for informing resource planning and the need for effective messaging campaigns to address negative misconceptions, which is also necessary for COVID-19 vaccination programs.
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April 2021

Belief of having had unconfirmed Covid-19 infection reduces willingness to participate in app-based contact tracing.

NPJ Digit Med 2020 Nov 6;3(1):146. Epub 2020 Nov 6.

National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London, UK.

Contact tracing and lockdown are health policies being used worldwide to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19). The UK National Health Service (NHS) Track and Trace Service has plans for a nationwide app that notifies the need for self-isolation to those in contact with a person testing positive for COVID-19. To be successful, such an app will require high uptake, the determinants and willingness for which are unclear but essential to understand for effective public health benefit. The objective of this study was to measure the determinants of willingness to participate in an NHS app-based contact-tracing programme using a questionnaire within the Care Information Exchange (CIE)-the largest patient-facing electronic health record in the NHS. Among 47,708 registered NHS users of the CIE, 27% completed a questionnaire asking about willingness to participate in app-based contact tracing, understanding of government advice, mental and physical wellbeing and their healthcare utilisation-related or not to COVID-19. Descriptive statistics are reported alongside univariate and multivariable logistic regression models, with positive or negative responses to a question on app-based contact tracing as the dependent variable. 26.1% of all CIE participants were included in the analysis (N = 12,434, 43.0% male, mean age 55.2). 60.3% of respondents were willing to participate in app-based contact tracing. Out of those who responded 'no', 67.2% stated that this was due to privacy concerns. In univariate analysis, worsening mood, fear and anxiety in relation to changes in government rules around lockdown were associated with lower willingness to participate. Multivariable analysis showed that difficulty understanding government rules was associated with a decreased inclination to download the app, with those scoring 1-2 and 3-4 in their understanding of the new government rules being 45% and 27% less inclined to download the contact-tracing app, respectively; when compared to those who rated their understanding as 5-6/10 (OR for 1-2/10 = 0.57 [CI 0.48-0.67]; OR for 3-4/10 = 0.744 [CI 0.64-0.87]), whereas scores of 7-8 and 9-10 showed a 43% and 31% respective increase. Those reporting an unconfirmed belief of having previously had and recovered from COVID-19 were 27% less likely to be willing to download the app; belief of previous recovery from COVID-19 infection OR 0.727 [0.585-0.908]). In this large UK-wide questionnaire of wellbeing in lockdown, a willingness for app-based contact tracing over an appropriate age range is 60%-close to the estimated 56% population uptake, and substantially less than the smartphone-user uptake considered necessary for an app-based contact tracing to be an effective intervention to help suppress an epidemic. Difficulty comprehending government advice and uncertainty of diagnosis, based on a public health policy of not testing to confirm self-reported COVID-19 infection during lockdown, therefore reduce willingness to adopt a government contact-tracing app to a level below the threshold for effectiveness as a tool to suppress an epidemic.
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November 2020