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Articles in E-pub version are posted online ahead of regular printed publication.

Original Articles
mRNA vaccine effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.2 (Delta) and B.1.1.529 (Omicron) variant transmission from home care cases to household contacts in South Korea
Hanul Park, Young Joon Park, Sang Eun Lee, Min Jei Lee, Hyungtae Ahn
Received September 1, 2022  Accepted November 1, 2022  Published online November 28, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0243    [Epub ahead of print]
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Household contacts of confirmed cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are exposed to a high risk of viral transmission, and secondary incidence is an important indicator of community transmission. This study analyzed the secondary attack rate and mRNA vaccine effectiveness against transmission (VET) for index cases (patients treated at home) confirmed to be infected with the Delta and Omicron variants.
Methods
The subjects of the study were 4,450 index cases and 10,382 household contacts. Logistic regression analysis was performed to compare the secondary attack rate by vaccination status, and adjusted relative risk and 95% confidence intervals were identified.
Results
The secondary attack rate of the Delta variant was 27.3%, while the secondary attack rate of the Omicron variant was 29.8%. For the Delta variant, groups with less than 90 days and more than 90 days after 2 doses of mRNA vaccination both showed a VET of 37%. For the Omicron variant, a 64% VET was found among those with less than 90 days after 2 doses of mRNA vaccination.
Conclusion
This study provides useful data on the secondary attack rate and VET of mRNA vaccines for household contacts of COVID-19 cases in South Korea.
Time-series comparison of COVID-19 case fatality rates across 21 countries with adjustment for multiple covariates
Yongmoon Kim, Bryan Inho Kim, Sangwoo Tak
Received July 25, 2022  Accepted October 18, 2022  Published online November 28, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0212    [Epub ahead of print]
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Although it is widely used as a measure for mortality, the case fatality rate (CFR) of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can vary over time and fluctuate for many reasons other than viral characteristics. To compare the CFRs of different countries in equal measure, we estimated comparable CFRs after adjusting for multiple covariates and examined the main factors that contributed to variability in the CFRs among 21 countries.
Methods
For statistical analysis, time-series cross-sectional data were collected from Our World in Data, CoVariants.org, and GISAID. Biweekly CFRs of COVID-19 were estimated by pooled generalized linear squares regression models for the panel data. Covariates included the predominant virus variant, reproduction rate, vaccination, national economic status, hospital beds, diabetes prevalence, and population share of individuals older than age 65. In total, 21 countries were eligible for analysis.
Results
Adjustment for covariates reduced variation in the CFRs of COVID-19 across countries and over time. Regression results showed that the dominant spread of the Omicron variant, reproduction rate, and vaccination were associated with lower country-level CFRs, whereas age, the extreme poverty rate, and diabetes prevalence were associated with higher country-level CFRs.
Conclusion
A direct comparison of crude CFRs among countries may be fallacious, especially in a cross-sectional analysis. Our study presents an adjusted comparison of CFRs over time for a more proper comparison. In addition, our findings suggest that comparing CFRs among different countries without considering their context, such as the epidemic phase, medical capacity, surveillance strategy, and socio-demographic traits, should be avoided.
Review Article
SARS-CoV-2 in brief: from virus to prevention
Hassan Karami, Zeinab Karimi, Negin Karami
Received May 21, 2022  Accepted October 11, 2022  Published online November 28, 2022  
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0155    [Epub ahead of print]
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AbstractAbstract PDF
The recent outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a highly transmissible virus with a likely animal origin, has posed major and unprecedented challenges to millions of lives across the affected nations of the world. This outbreak first occurred in China, and despite massive regional and global attempts shortly thereafter, it spread to other countries and caused millions of deaths worldwide. This review presents key information about the characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 and its associated disease (namely, coronavirus disease 2019) and briefly discusses the origin of the virus. Herein, we also briefly summarize the strategies used against viral spread and transmission.

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives