Authors

Hyacinth O. Ukuhor 

Saudi Electronic University, Department of Public Health, P. O. Box 93499, Riyadh 11673, KSA

Departments

Saudi Electronic University, Department of Public Health, P. O. Box 93499, Riyadh 11673, KSA

Abstract

Introduction: COVID-19, the infectious disease caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has left several countries grappling with a devastating pandemic. Developing an effective COVID 19 vaccine may be possible but there are significant issues with public distrust and vaccine hesitancy. Public health efforts aimed at testing symptomatic patients, and other preventative measures, however, these efforts have been unable to significantly curtail the pandemic. There is a paucity of research that comprehensively focuses on determinants and deterrents to identify critical knowledge gaps. This review aims to focus efforts on strategies to contain the virus. 

Materials and methods: Google Scholar, PubMed, and archives of preprints were searched with the following terms “COVID-19”, “SARS-CoV-2”, “2019-nCoV”, “epidemiology”, “determinants”, and “deterrents.” The reference lists of articles were examined for relevant studies. 

Results: All age groups are susceptible and can transmit the virus. Individuals with severe outcomes include but are not limited to age 65 years or older, male sex, ethnic minorities, and the presence of comorbidities. Misinformation on social media and other traditional information sources is a risk factor for COVID-19 morbidity and mortality. Indoor and outdoor aerosolization of SARS-CoV-2, asymptomatic, pre-symptomatic transmission, and incubation period of over 14 days in some infected individuals have been reported. Widespread rapid SARS-CoV-2 population screening and contact tracing are methods of effective containment including proper use of facemasks in crowded outdoor or indoor spaces, installation of HEPA filters, regular hand hygiene, and physical distancing measures. Simple cost-effective measures include opening doors and windows of buildings where possible.

Conclusion: Achieving herd immunity with a vaccine may be difficult because of misinformation. A potential incubation period of over 14 days is the bane of Covid-19 current control strategies. More research is needed including investigating the long-term effects of Covid-19 particularly in children, and fecal aerosol transmission. Evidence-based information and the identified infection prevention measures should be advocated.

Keywords

COVID-19, pathogenesis, risk factors, determinants, deterrents.

DOI:

10.19193/0393-6384_2020_6_579