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COVID-19: Original Article
Korea Seroprevalence Study of Monitoring of SARS-COV-2 Antibody Retention and Transmission (K-SEROSMART): findings from national representative sample
Jina Han, Hye Jin Baek, Eunbi Noh, Kyuhyun Yoon, Jung Ae Kim, Sukhyun Ryu, Kay O Lee, No Yai Park, Eunok Jung, Sangil Kim, Hyukmin Lee, Yoo-Sung Hwang, Jaehun Jung, Hun Jae Lee, Sung-il Cho, Sangcheol Oh, Migyeong Kim, Chang-Mo Oh, Byengchul Yu, Young-Seoub Hong, Keonyeop Kim, Sun Jae Jung, Mi Ah Han, Moo-Sik Lee, Jung-Jeung Lee, Young Hwangbo, Hyeon Woo Yim, Yu-Mi Kim, Joongyub Lee, Weon-Young Lee, Jae-Hyun Park, Sungsoo Oh, Heui Sug Jo, Hyeongsu Kim, Gilwon Kang, Hae-Sung Nam, Ju-Hyung Lee, Gyung-Jae Oh, Min-Ho Shin, Soyeon Ryu, Tae-Yoon Hwang, Soon-Woo Park, Sang Kyu Kim, Roma Seol, Ki-Soo Park, Su Young Kim, Jun-wook Kwon, Sung Soon Kim, Byoungguk Kim, June-Woo Lee, Eun Young Jang, Ah-Ra Kim, Jeonghyun Nam, The Korea Community Health Survey Group, Soon Young Lee, Dong-Hyun Kim
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023075.   Published online August 17, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023075
  • 5,263 View
  • 197 Download
  • 3 Web of Science
  • 1 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
We estimated the population prevalence of antibodies to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), including unreported infections, through a Korea Seroprevalence Study of Monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 Antibody Retention and Transmission (K-SEROSMART) in 258 communities throughout Korea.
METHODS
In August 2022, a survey was conducted among 10,000 household members aged 5 years and older, in households selected through two stage probability random sampling. During face-to-face household interviews, participants self-reported their health status, COVID-19 diagnosis and vaccination history, and general characteristics. Subsequently, participants visited a community health center or medical clinic for blood sampling. Blood samples were analyzed for the presence of antibodies to spike proteins (anti-S) and antibodies to nucleocapsid proteins (anti-N) SARS-CoV-2 proteins using an electrochemiluminescence immunoassay. To estimate the population prevalence, the PROC SURVEYMEANS statistical procedure was employed, with weighting to reflect demographic data from July 2022.
RESULTS
In total, 9,945 individuals from 5,041 households were surveyed across 258 communities, representing all basic local governments in Korea. The overall population-adjusted prevalence rates of anti-S and anti-N were 97.6% and 57.1%, respectively. Since the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency has reported a cumulative incidence of confirmed cases of 37.8% through July 31, 2022, the proportion of unreported infections among all COVID-19 infection was suggested to be 33.9%.
CONCLUSIONS
The K-SEROSMART represents the first nationwide, community-based seroepidemiologic survey of COVID-19, confirming that most individuals possess antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 and that a significant number of unreported cases existed. Furthermore, this study lays the foundation for a surveillance system to continuously monitor transmission at the community level and the response to COVID-19.
Summary
Korean summary
인구집단을 기반으로 하여 대표성 있는 표본을 추출하여 COVID-19 항체유병률 조사를 전국적으로 수행함으로 지역사회 단위에서 지속적으로 모니터링할 수 있는 COVID-19 감시체계 구축의 기반을 마련하였다. 2022년 8월 우리나라 국민의 대부분이 COVID-19에 대한 항체를 보유하고 있었고 인구 3명 중 1명은 미확진 감염자로 추정되었다.
Key Message
The K-SEROSMART represents the first nationwide, community-based seroepidemiologic survey of COVID-19. In August 2022, most of the Korean people had antibodies to COVID-19, and one in three people was estimated to have an unreported infection. This study lays the foundation for a surveillance system to continuously monitor transmission at the community level and the response to COVID-19.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Infection-mediated immune response in SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infection and implications for next-generation COVID-19 vaccine development
    Sho Miyamoto, Tadaki Suzuki
    Vaccine.2024; 42(6): 1401.     CrossRef
Original Articles
Associations of regional-level perceived stress and depression with health-related quality of life in Korean adults: a multilevel analysis of 2017 Korea Community Health Survey data
Eunsu Kim, Min-Ho Shin, Jung-Ho Yang, Soon-Ki Ahn, Baeg-Ju Na, Hae-Sung Nam
Epidemiol Health. 2021;43:e2021062.   Published online September 8, 2021
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2021062
  • 8,887 View
  • 270 Download
  • 1 Web of Science
  • 3 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
We examined the associations of individual and regional-level perceived stress and depression with health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in Korean adults.
METHODS
We used data from the 2017 Korea Community Health Survey, which included 216,713 adults living within 254 municipal districts. As individual-level independent variables, perceived stress (higher vs. lower) and depression (Patient Health Questionnaire-9 ≥10) were defined. Regional-level age-adjusted rates of perceived stress (%) and depression (%) were created for 254 municipal districts and categorized into quartiles to generate regional levels of stress and depression. HRQOL was defined as the individual-level EuroQol 5-dimensional index×100. A multilevel analysis was performed to identify the relationship between individual or regional-level independent variables and individual HRQOL.
RESULTS
In the null model, the proportions of individual variation in the HRQOL explained by region were 1.7% and 2.7% for men and women, respectively. When adjusted with all individual-level variables, regional stress and depression, as well as individual-level perceived stress and depression, were significantly related to HRQOL for both genders. In the full model including all variables, the decrease in HRQOL from the first to the fourth quartile group of regional stress was greater in women (-1.09; 95% confidence interval [CI], -1.87 to -0.31) than in men (-0.65; 95% CI, -1.04 to -0.26).
CONCLUSIONS
Our results suggest that regional-level perceived stress and depression, as well as individual-level perceived stress and depression, are inversely associated with individual HRQOL.
Summary
Korean summary
시군구 단위 스트레스 인지율과 우울 유병률이 개인 단위 건강관련 삶의 질 수준과 연관성을 갖는지 파악하고자 지역사회건강조사 자료를 이용하여 다수준 분석을 수행하였다. 개인 수준에서 인지된 스트레스와 우울은 건강관련 삶의 질 감소와 관련이 있었다. 스트레스와 우울 수준이 높은 시군구일수록 개인의 건강관련 삶의 질은 낮아지는 관계를 보였는데, 이는 남성보다는 여성에서 더 저명하였다.
Key Message
This study examined the associations of regional-level perceived stress and depression with individual HRQOL measured in terms of the EQ-5D using a multilevel model. Individual-level perceived stress and depression were significantly related to individual HRQOL. Regional stress and depression were also significant factors and both had greater negative impacts on HRQOL among women than among men.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Association between seafood intake and depression in Korean adults: analysis of data from the 2014–2020 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
    Hyemin Shin, Won Jang, Yangha Kim
    Journal of Nutrition and Health.2023; 56(6): 702.     CrossRef
  • Depression before and during-COVID-19 by Gender in the Korean Population
    Won-Tae Cha, Hye-Jin Joo, Yu-Shin Park, Eun-Cheol Park, Soo-Young Kim
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2022; 19(6): 3477.     CrossRef
  • Association Between Regional Levels of Particulate Matter and Recurrent Falls in Korea
    Jung-Ho Yang, Ji-An Jeong, Sun-Seog Kweon, Min-Ho Shin
    Journal of Korean Medical Science.2022;[Epub]     CrossRef
Asymptomatic Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus infection using a serologic survey in Korea
Yeong-jun Song, Jeong-Sun Yang, Hee Jung Yoon, Hae-Sung Nam, Soon Young Lee, Hae-Kwan Cheong, Woo-Jung Park, Sung Han Park, Bo Youl Choi, Sung Soon Kim, Moran Ki
Epidemiol Health. 2018;40:e2018014.   Published online April 15, 2018
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2018014
  • 17,095 View
  • 300 Download
  • 15 Web of Science
  • 16 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
The rates of asymptomatic infection with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus vary. A serologic study was conducted to determine the asymptomatic MERS infection rate in healthcare workers and non-healthcare workers by exposure status.
METHODS
Study participants were selected from contacts of MERS patients based on a priority system in 4 regions strongly affected by the 2015 MERS outbreak. A sero-epidemiological survey was performed in 1,610 contacts (average duration from exposure to test, 4.8 months), and the collected sera were tested using an enzyme-linked immunespecific assay (ELISA), immunofluorescence assay (IFA), and plaque reduction neutralization antibody test (PRNT). Among the 1,610 contacts, there were 7 ELISA-positive cases, of which 1 exhibited positive IFA and PRNT results.
RESULTS
The asymptomatic infection rate was 0.060% (95% confidence interval, 0.002 to 0.346). The asymptomatic MERS case was a patient who had been hospitalized with patient zero on the same floor of the hospital at the same time. The case was quarantined at home for 2 weeks after discharge, and had underlying diseases, including hypertension, angina, and degenerative arthritis.
CONCLUSIONS
The asymptomatic infection was acquired via healthcare-associated transmission. Thus, it is necessary to extend serologic studies to include inpatient contacts who have no symptoms.
Summary
Korean summary
2015년 국내 MERS 유행시에 자가격리를 시행하였던 접촉자 약 15,000명 (의료인과 비의료인 포함) 중에서 주요 유행지역, 노출 강도 등을 고려하여 선별된 3,291명을 대상으로 무증상 감염여부를 확인하기 위한 혈청 역학조사를 수행하였다. 최종 검사에 참여한 1,610명 중에서 7명이 ELISA 양성 반응을 보였고, 그 중 1명이 IFA와 PRNT에서도 양성 반응을 보여 무증상 감염률은 0.060%(95% CI: 0.002-0.346)로 기존 연구에 비하여 낮았다. 최종 양성을 보인 1명은 노출 당시 1번환자와 가까운 병실에 입원하였던 환자였다.

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  • MERS-CoV seroconversion amongst Malaysian Hajj pilgrims returning from the Middle East, 2016–2018: results from the MERCURIAL multiyear prospective cohort study
    Jefree Johari, Robert D. Hontz, Brian L. Pike, Tupur Husain, Norhayati Rusli, Rozainanee Mohd-Zain, Vunjia Tiong, Hai-Yen Lee, Boon-Teong Teoh, Sing-Sin Sam, Chee-Sieng Khor, Shih-Keng Loong, Juraina Abd-Jamil, Siti-Sarah Nor'e, Hasmawati Yahaya, Naim Che
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Epidemiologic Investigation
Healthcare worker infected with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome during cardiopulmonary resuscitation in Korea, 2015
Hae-Sung Nam, Mi-Yeon Yeon, Jung Wan Park, Jee-Young Hong, Ji Woong Son
Epidemiol Health. 2017;39:e2017052.   Published online November 12, 2017
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2017052
  • 17,762 View
  • 283 Download
  • 26 Web of Science
  • 39 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
During the outbreak of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in Korea in 2015, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) confirmed a case of MERS in a healthcare worker in Daejeon, South Korea. To verify the precise route of infection for the case, we conducted an in-depth epidemiological investigation in cooperation with the KCDC.
METHODS
We reviewed the MERS outbreak investigation report of the KCDC, and interviewed the healthcare worker who had recovered from MERS. Using the media interview data, we reaffirmed and supplemented the nature of the exposure.
RESULTS
The healthcare worker, a nurse, was infected while performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for a MERS patient in an isolation room. During the CPR which lasted for an hour, a large amount of body fluid was splashed. The nurse was presumed to have touched the mask to adjust its position during the CPR. She suggested that she was contaminated with the MERS patient’s body fluids by wiping away the sweat from her face during the CPR.
CONCLUSIONS
The possible routes of infection may include the following: respiratory invasion of aerosols contaminated with MERS-coronavirus (MERS-CoV) through a gap between the face and mask; mucosal exposure to sweat contaminated with MERS-CoV; and contamination during doffing of personal protective equipment. The MERS guidelines should reflect this case to decrease the risk of infection during CPR.
Summary
Korean summary
2015년 한국의 Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) 유행 기간 중 질병관리본부는 MERS 환자 심폐소생술(cardio–pulmonary resuscitation, CPR)에 참여한 간호사에서 MERS를 확진하였다. 이 사례에 대해 대전광역시 메르스 대응 민간역학조사지원단에서 심층역학조사를 실시한 결과 (1) CPR 수행 중 MERS-CoV에 오염된 에어로졸의 호흡기 침투, (2) MERS-CoV에 오염된 땀의 점막 침투, (3) 보호구 탈의 과정에서 MERS-Cov에 오염 등이 가능한 감염 경로로 파악되었다. 본 사례는 MERS 환자에 대한 CPR 수행 및 수행자의 보호구 착용과 관련하여 MERS 관리 지침의 개정이 필요함을 시사한다.

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Original Article
Differences in agricultural activities related to incidence of scrub typhus between Korea and Japan
Chang-Jin Ma, Gyung-Jae Oh, Gong-Unn Kang, Jeong Mi Lee, Da-Un Lee, Hae-Sung Nam, So Yeon Ryu, Young-Hoon Lee
Epidemiol Health. 2017;39:e2017051.   Published online November 9, 2017
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2017051
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
The purpose of this study was to establish a basis for improving or strengthening the preventive strategy against scrub typhus in Korea by comparing and analyzing the difference of prevention behaviors contributing to the occurrence of scrub typhus in Japan and Korea.
METHODS
The survey was carried out in Jeollabuk-do, which is a high risk and high incidence area, and Fukuoka Prefecture, which is a high risk and low incidence area. The study included 406 Korean farmers and 216 Japanese farmers. Data were collected through face-to-face surveys by interviewers who had completed standardized education.
RESULTS
Korean farmers have a higher percentage of agricultural working posture that involved contact with weeds than Japanese farmers (p<0.05). The frequency and proportion of weeding were lower in Korean farmers than in Japanese farmers (p<0.05). The level of knowledge about scrub typhus was significantly higher among Korean farmers than among Japanese farmers (p<0.05). Mostly, the behavior of agriculture work was more appropriate for Japanese farmers than for Korean farmers (p<0.05). The total average level of agricultural work was lower in Korea than in Japan, lower in men than women, and lower in part-time farmers than full-time farmers (p<0.05).
CONCLUSIONS
This study suggests that it is reasonable to develop and provide a program that can improve the level of preventive behavior taking into consideration the characteristics of the subject in order to reduce the incidence of diseases in high-risk areas for scrub typhus.
Summary
Korean summary
이 연구는 쯔쯔가무시증 발생 위험은 공통으로 존재하나 발생률 및 발생 건수에서는 현저한 차이를 나타내는 한·일 농업인들의 털진드기 매개체에 대한 접촉과 관련된 행태나 환경 관리의 차이를 파악하였다. 연구결과 한국은 일본에 비해 환경관리 수준이 낮고, 풀숲과 접촉할 수 있는 농작업 자세를 더 취하고 있었으며, 쯔쯔가무시증에 대한 지식 수준은 높으나 예방행태 수행 수준은 낮았다. 이 연구는 한국의 농업인들의 쯔쯔가무시증 발생을 억제하기 위해서는 예방행태를 향상시킬 수 있는 프로그램 개발과 제공이 필요함을 제시하고 있다.

Citations

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