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Epidemiology of COVID-19 in Individuals under 18 Years Old in Cartagena, Colombia: An Ecological Study of the First 14 Months of the Pandemic

1
Molecular Research Unit (UNIMOL), Faculty of Medicine, University of Cartagena, Cartagena de Indias 130014, Colombia
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PhD Program in Tropical Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Cartagena, Cartagena de Indias 130014, Colombia
3
Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima 150135, Peru
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Tzai-Hung Wen
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7(6), 107; https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7060107
Received: 16 May 2022 / Revised: 7 June 2022 / Accepted: 13 June 2022 / Published: 15 June 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tracking Infectious Diseases)
The epidemiology of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has been scarcely described in individuals under 18 years old, particularly during the first months of the pandemic. The study aimed to describe the COVID-19 epidemiology in the Colombian department of Bolívar from March 2020 to April 2021 among individuals under 18 years. Furthermore, we explored whether the use of data generated by a Bolívar reference laboratory captures the departmental epidemiology. Two information sources were used; the national COVID-19 surveillance system and the Bolívar COVID-19 reference laboratory. In using a population-based ecological approach and information from confirmed symptomatic cases, epidemic curves and heat maps were constructed to assess the COVID-19 dynamics and patterns by sex, age, and residence (Cartagena vs. 45 other municipalities). The COVID-19 incidence was comparable between males and females but varied by age group, being higher in children aged 10 years and older. Cartagena had a significantly higher number of cases and experienced early epidemic peaks. Our analyses suggest that information generated by the reference laboratory does not capture the COVID-19 departmental epidemiology, despite conducting population-based surveillance across Bolívar. The study provides a retrospective characterization of the COVID-19 epidemiology in an understudied population and information that may be useful for future evidence-based responses. View Full-Text
Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; child; adolescent; Colombia SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; child; adolescent; Colombia
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MDPI and ACS Style

Loyola, S.; Cano-Pérez, E.; Torres-Pacheco, J.; Malambo-Garcia, D.; Gomez, R.; Gomez-Camargo, D. Epidemiology of COVID-19 in Individuals under 18 Years Old in Cartagena, Colombia: An Ecological Study of the First 14 Months of the Pandemic. Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2022, 7, 107. https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7060107

AMA Style

Loyola S, Cano-Pérez E, Torres-Pacheco J, Malambo-Garcia D, Gomez R, Gomez-Camargo D. Epidemiology of COVID-19 in Individuals under 18 Years Old in Cartagena, Colombia: An Ecological Study of the First 14 Months of the Pandemic. Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease. 2022; 7(6):107. https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7060107

Chicago/Turabian Style

Loyola, Steev, Eder Cano-Pérez, Jaison Torres-Pacheco, Dacia Malambo-Garcia, Ruben Gomez, and Doris Gomez-Camargo. 2022. "Epidemiology of COVID-19 in Individuals under 18 Years Old in Cartagena, Colombia: An Ecological Study of the First 14 Months of the Pandemic" Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease 7, no. 6: 107. https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed7060107

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