Patients’ Engagement in Early Detection of COVID-19 Symptoms: An Observational Study in the Very Early Peak of the Pandemic in Italy in 2020

Lorenzo Palamenghi, Lorenzo Palamenghi, Guendalina Graffigna, Daniele Generali, Fabiola Giudici

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista

Abstract

COVID-19 exerted a strong impact on the Italian healthcare systems, which in turn resulted in a reduction in the citizens’ trust towards healthcare authorities. Moreover, the focused attention on the typical COVID-19 symptoms (fever, cough) has also impacted the social representation of health priorities, potentially reducing the perceived importance and severity of other symptoms. This study aimed to determine the association of general-practitioner (GP) contact with various symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic in Cremona, an Italian city at the very epicentre of the pandemic. Between April and June 2020, an anonymous survey was completed by 2161 respondents. Logistic-regression analyses were used to examine the associations of GP contact with sociodemographic characteristics and the presence of symptoms. Of the 2161 respondents (43.5% female, 75.0% aged less than 55 years), 959 (44.4%) reported experiencing various symptoms and 33.3% contacted a GP. GP contact was significantly associated with poor appetite (OR, 2.42; 95% CI 1.63 to 3.62; p < 0.001), taste dysfunctions (OR 1.67; 95% CI 1.20 to 2.34; p < 0.001) and sleepiness during the day (OR 4.15; 95% CI 2.13 to 8.09; p = 0.002). None of the gastrointestinal symptoms resulted in significantly increasing the likelihood of contacting a GP. This study offers a unique observation of citizens’ attitudes and behaviours in early symptom communication/detection during the initial peak of the Italian COVID-19 pandemic.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)3058-N/A
RivistaInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
DOI
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2022

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • general practitioner
  • health engagement
  • public health
  • symptoms

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