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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
  • 4,280 View
  • 184 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
Experience of 16 years and its associated challenges in the Field Epidemiology Training Program in Korea
Moo-Sik Lee, Eun-Young Kim, Sang-Won Lee
Epidemiol Health. 2017;39:e2017058.   Published online December 25, 2017
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2017058
  • 13,184 View
  • 261 Download
  • 6 Web of Science
  • 9 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
The field epidemiologist system of South Korea, which employs public health doctors who are relatively more readily available, was created in 1999 to ensure a ready supply of experts for epidemiological investigations and enable an effective response for new and reemerging infectious diseases. However, the 2015 outbreak of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome revealed limitations in the existing systems of management of field epidemiologists and communicable diseases.
METHODS
The present study aims to evaluate data on current states, administrative reports, and other literature on the field epidemiologist system that has been in place in South Korea for 16 years since 1999 and to suggest appropriate future improvements in this system.
RESULTS
By suggesting methods to evaluate the field epidemiologist system and training programs and by suggesting ways for the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to conduct evaluations on its own, the present study provides supporting evidence for improvement of systems for training of experts in epidemiological investigations. Moreover, based on the findings, this study also suggests methods to systematically train experts in communicable diseases management and a sustainable system to establish the basis of and develop strategies for a systematic and phased management of field epidemiologist training programs.
CONCLUSIONS
The present study suggests the possibility of establishing dedicated training facilities, revising the guidelines on training and improvement of the competency of public health experts, while not limiting the scope of application to communicable diseases.
Summary
Korean summary
목적 : 이 연구는 한국의 역학조사관제도의 바람직한 개선방향을 제시하고자 하였다. 방법 : 1999년 이후 16년간 한국에서 진행되어왔던 역학조사관 제도의 운영 현황자료, 각종 문헌, 행정보고서 등을 리뷰하고, 분석 및 평가하였다. 결과 : 연구 분석결과를 활용하여 보다 체계적인 감염병 관리 전문가 양성을 위한 방안과 역학조사관 교육 프로그램의 체계적인, 단계적인 운영 기반을 구축하고 전략 개발을 위한 지속가능한 수행체계를 제안하였으며, 역학조사관 제도 및 교육프로그램의 평가 방법을 제시하고, 향후 질병관리본부에서 자체적인 평가방향을 제안하였다. 또한 감염병에만 국한되지 않는 공중보건 전문인력 양성 및 역량 강화의 가이드라인 개정 및 전문 교육기관 설립에 대한 가능성을 제안함으로써 한국의 역학조사 전문인력 양성을 위한 제도개선을 위한 근거 자료를 마련하였다. 결론 : 이 연구에서 제안된 안을 바탕으로 향후 한국의 역학조사관제도의 적극적인 개선이 요구된다.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Core competencies in applied infectious disease epidemiology: a framework for countries in Europe
    Amelie Plymoth, Mary B Codd, Julia Barry, Adrian Boncan, Arnold Bosman, Karl F Conyard, Katarzyna Czabanowska, Nadav Davidovitch, Rodrigo Filipe, Lorena Gonzalez, Lore Leighton, John Middleton, Michael Ndirangu, Robert Otok, John Reid, Ralf Reintjes, Darr
    Eurosurveillance.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
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    Tolcha Kebebew, Mahlet A. Woldetsadik, Jordan Barker, Angelina Cui, Aisha A. Abedi, David E. Sugerman, Desmond E. Williams, Reina M. Turcios-Ruiz, Tariku Takele, Neima Zeynu
    BMC Health Services Research.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
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    Maeen Abduljalil, Abdulhakeem Al Kohlani, Aisha Jumaan, Abdulwahed Al Serouri
    Epidemiologia.2023; 4(3): 235.     CrossRef
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    Jiyun Park, Gye Jeong Yeom
    Research in Community and Public Health Nursing.2023; 34: 267.     CrossRef
  • 감염병 위기상황 대비 방역인력 양성 방향
    무식 이
    Public Health Weekly Report.2022; 15(46): 2811.     CrossRef
  • Awareness of the epidemiological investigation tasks of the nurse in charge of COVID-19 epidemiological investigations
    Haeng-Mi Son, Won-Hee Choi, Hye-Ryun Yang, Young-Hui Hwang
    The Journal of Korean Academic Society of Nursing Education.2022; 28(4): 433.     CrossRef
  • Evaluation of a New Field Epidemiology Training Program Intermediate Course to Strengthen Public Health Workforce Capacity in Tanzania
    Kate Wilson, Amir Juya, Ahmed Abade, Senga Sembuche, Devotha Leonard, Julie Harris, Samantha Perkins, Stella Chale, Muhammad Bakari, Janneth Mghamba, Pamela Kohler
    Public Health Reports.2021; 136(5): 575.     CrossRef
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    Sukhyun Ryu
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2020; 17(3): 949.     CrossRef
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    Paola Dey, Jeremy Brown, John Sandars, Yvonne Young, Ruth Ruggles, Samantha Bracebridge
    Eurosurveillance.2019;[Epub]     CrossRef
Handwashing with soap and national handwashing projects in Korea: focus on the National Handwashing Survey, 2006-2014
Moo-Sik Lee, Su Jin Hong, Young-Taek Kim
Epidemiol Health. 2015;37:e2015039.   Published online August 31, 2015
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih/e2015039
  • 18,963 View
  • 233 Download
  • 15 Web of Science
  • 19 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
Handwashing is the most fundamental way to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Correct handwashing can prevent 50 to 70% of water-infections and foodborne-infections. We report the results of a fact-finding study on general handwashing attitude and practice in the Republic of Korea by analyzing habits and awareness among adults and students (grades 4 to 12) based on the 2006 to 2014 National Handwashing Surveys and observational surveys.
METHODS
The awareness survey was performed by telephone interviews with adults and students in 16 municipalities and provinces sampled by quota for region, sex and age. The observational survey was performed in subway, railway, and other public restrooms in seven municipalities selected through systematic sampling.
RESULTS
Adults and students washed their hands with soap/sanitizer an average of 6.6 and 5.2 times daily, respectively, in 2014, an increase and decrease compared to 2006 (4.8) and 2013 (6.8). Their average daily handwashing frequency in 2014, 9.8 and 8.3, was higher than in 2006 (7.6), but lower than in 2013 (10.3).The percentage of participants handwashing with soap after using the restroom (29.5%) has been increasing since 2009, but remain slower than in other countries (42% to 49%). The percentages of participants handwashing with water in 2014, 2013, and 2011 were 57.5%, 72.6%, and 71.4%, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS
Handwashing with soap is an important national public health issue, and national projects promoting it should be given high priority. Research support is necessary to provide scientific evidence of the importance of handwashing with soap and to develop and implement evidence-based policies.
Summary
Korean summary
우리나라(한국)의 2006년부터 2014년 사이에 수행된 손씻기 실태조사 결과분석을 통하여 성인과 초•중•고등학생들의 평소 손씻기 실태 및 인식, 공공화장실 이용시 손씻기 행동의 수준 및 추세를 파악함으로써 추후 비누로 손씻기 사업의 근거와 정책 및 전략 개발의 기초자료를 제공하고자 하였다.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
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Epidemiol Health : Epidemiology and Health