Special Issue "Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case"

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032). This special issue belongs to the section "Coronaviruses (CoV) and COVID-19 Pandemic".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 December 2021) | Viewed by 15156

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Eduardo Tomé
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Economics Department, Universidade Lusófona de Humanidades e Tecnologias, 1749-024 Lisbon, Portugal
Interests: human resources; social policy
Prof. Dr. Thomas Garavan
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
National College of Ireland Dublin, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
Interests: CSR and transformational leadership; cross-cultural dimensions of diversity training; tacit knowledge in manufacturing; international human resource management standards; human resource management in MNCs; human resource development
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Ana Dias
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Uniiversidade de Aveiro, Portugal
Interests: health management; health policy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent months, humanity has faced an unprecedented challenge. Although we have dealt with many diseases over the centuries, never before have we faced a situation like COVID-19 [1]. Distinctive features of COVID-19 relate to the widespread use of instant information technologies, the absence of social and scientific knowledge on how to deal with the disease, and pressure on political and administrative bodies to restore safety. Never before has a disease shown the limits of the globalised world in the 21st century. The science is lacking and humanity must come to terms with the disease. Therefore, in this Special Issue, we invite papers on the social and economic consequences of disease, particularly of COVID-19. We invite you to:

  • Analyse COVID-19 per se;
  • Compare COVID-19 with other diseases or pandemics;
  • Discuss and present case studies, national studies, comparative studies, historical analysis, or actor-centred studies;
  • Analyse direct (health-related), indirect (economic and social), induced (political, ethical, or spirituality-related).

The studies may be quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-method.

Prof. Dr. Eduardo Tomé
Prof. Dr. Thomas Garavan
Dr. Ana Dias
Guest Editors

Reference

  1. The Worst Global Pandemics. Available online: https://www.publichealthonline.org/worst-global-pandemics-in-history/ (accessed on 9 October 2020)

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Healthcare is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Covid-19
  • Pandemics
  • Covid-19 in the scope of disease and pandemics
  • Social and economic consequences
  • Direct consequences – health system and health
  • Indirect consequences – employment and income
  • Induced consequences – politics, ethics, spirituality
  • Case studies
  • National cases
  • Comparative studies
  • Historical analysis
  • Prospective analysis
  • Actors centered analysis.

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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Article
Regression Analysis for COVID-19 Infections and Deaths Based on Food Access and Health Issues
Healthcare 2022, 10(2), 324; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10020324 - 08 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 729
Abstract
COVID-19, or SARS-CoV-2, is considered as one of the greatest pandemics in our modern time. It affected people’s health, education, employment, the economy, tourism, and transportation systems. It will take a long time to recover from these effects and return people’s lives back [...] Read more.
COVID-19, or SARS-CoV-2, is considered as one of the greatest pandemics in our modern time. It affected people’s health, education, employment, the economy, tourism, and transportation systems. It will take a long time to recover from these effects and return people’s lives back to normal. The main objective of this study is to investigate the various factors in health and food access, and their spatial correlation and statistical association with COVID-19 spread. The minor aim is to explore regression models on examining COVID-19 spread with these variables. To address these objectives, we are studying the interrelation of various socio-economic factors that would help all humans to better prepare for the next pandemic. One of these critical factors is food access and food distribution as it could be high-risk population density places that are spreading the virus infections. More variables, such as income and people density, would influence the pandemic spread. In this study, we produced the spatial extent of COVID-19 cases with food outlets by using the spatial analysis method of geographic information systems. The methodology consisted of clustering techniques and overlaying the spatial extent mapping of the clusters of food outlets and the infected cases. Post-mapping, we analyzed these clusters’ proximity for any spatial variability, correlations between them, and their causal relationships. The quantitative analyses of the health issues and food access areas against COVID-19 infections and deaths were performed using machine learning regression techniques to understand the multi-variate factors. The results indicate a correlation between the dependent variables and independent variables with a Pearson correlation R2-score = 0.44% for COVID-19 cases and R2 = 60% for COVID-19 deaths. The regression model with an R2-score of 0.60 would be useful to show the goodness of fit for COVID-19 deaths and the health issues and food access factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Reshaping the Healthcare Sector with Economic Policy Measures Based on COVID-19 Epidemic Severity: A Global Study
Healthcare 2022, 10(2), 315; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10020315 - 07 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 385
Abstract
Governments around the world are looking for ways to manage economic consequences of COVID-19 and promote economic development. The aim of this study is to identify the areas where the application of economic policy measures would enhance the resilience of societies on epidemic [...] Read more.
Governments around the world are looking for ways to manage economic consequences of COVID-19 and promote economic development. The aim of this study is to identify the areas where the application of economic policy measures would enhance the resilience of societies on epidemic risks. We use data on the COVID-19 pandemic outcome in a large number of countries. With the estimation of multiple econometric models, we identify areas being a reasonable choice for economic policy intervention. It was found that viable remediation actions worth taking can be identified either for long-, mid-, or short-term horizons, impacting the equality, healthcare sector, and national economy characteristics. We suggest encouraging research and development based on innovative technologies linked to industries in healthcare, pharmaceutical, and biotech, promoting transformation of healthcare systems based on new technologies, providing access to quality healthcare, promoting public healthcare providers, and investing in the development of regional healthcare infrastructure, as a tool of equal regional development based on economic assessment. Further, a central element of this study, i.e. the innovative identification matrix, could be populated as a unique policy framework, either for latest pandemic or any similar outbreaks in future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Perception Bias Effects on Healthcare Management in COVID-19 Pandemic: An Application of Cumulative Prospect Theory
Healthcare 2022, 10(2), 226; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10020226 - 25 Jan 2022
Viewed by 655
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has posed severe threats to human safety in the healthcare sector, particularly in residents in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) at a higher risk of morbidity and mortality. This study aims to draw on cumulative prospect theory (CPT) to develop [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has posed severe threats to human safety in the healthcare sector, particularly in residents in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) at a higher risk of morbidity and mortality. This study aims to draw on cumulative prospect theory (CPT) to develop a decision model to explore LTCF administrators’ risk perceptions and management decisions toward this pandemic. This study employed the policy Delphi method and survey data to examine managers’ perceptions and attitudes and explore the effects of sociodemographic characteristics on healthcare decisions. The findings show that participants exhibited risk aversion for small losses but became risk-neutral when considering devastating damages. LTCF managers exhibited perception bias that led to over- and under-estimation of the occurrence of infection risk. The contextual determinants, including LTCF type, scale, and strategy, simultaneously affect leaders’ risk perception toward consequences and probabilities. Specifically, cost-leadership facilities behave in a loss-averse way, whereas hybrid-strategy LTCFs appear biased in measuring probabilities. This study is the first research that proposes a CPT model to predict administrators’ risk perception under varying mixed gain–loss circumstances involving considerations of healthcare and society in the pandemic context. This study extends the application of CPT into organizational-level decisions. The results highlight that managers counteract their perception bias and subjective estimation to avoid inappropriate decisions in healthcare operations and risk governance for a future health emergency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
The Economic and Psychological Impacts of COVID-19 Pandemic on Indian Migrant Workers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Healthcare 2021, 9(9), 1152; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9091152 - 03 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1009
Abstract
The ongoing Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has changed the working environment, occupation, and living style of billions of people around the world. The severest impact of the coronavirus is on migrant communities; hence, it is relevant to assess the economic impact and [...] Read more.
The ongoing Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has changed the working environment, occupation, and living style of billions of people around the world. The severest impact of the coronavirus is on migrant communities; hence, it is relevant to assess the economic impact and mental status of the Indian migrants. This study is quantitative in nature and based on a sample survey of 180 migrant workers. Descriptive statistics, chi-square test, dependent sample t-test, and Pearson’s correlation coefficient were utilized to analyze the surveyed data. The findings of the study reveal, through the working experience of the migrants, that new international migration has reduced due to lockdown and international travel restrictions. It was also reported that the majority of the migrants worked less than the normal working hours during the lockdown, causing a reduction of salary and remittances. Chi-square test confirms that the perceptions of migrants towards the COVID-19 management by the government were significantly different in opinion by different occupation/profession. Majority of the sampled migrants reported the problem of nervousness, anxiety, and depression; however, they were also hopeful about the future. The psychological problem was severe for the migrants above the age of 40, not educated, and with a higher number of family members. Subsequently, the policy implications from the findings of the research can draw attention of the policy makers towards protective measures which need to be implemented to support migrants during the ongoing pandemic. The government should take some necessary steps, such as a financial benefit scheme, to overcome the problems in the reduction of migrant earnings and remittances. The government should not focus only on vaccination and physical fitness of the migrants but also need to find out the cure of the psychological impact arising during the pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
The COVID-19 Pandemic Strain: Teleworking and Health Behavior Changes in the Portuguese Context
Healthcare 2021, 9(9), 1151; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9091151 - 03 Sep 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 930
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced a societal essay, based on thorough measures of individual and communitarian protection, ranging from compulsory social distancing to quarantine. Following WHO recommendations, more or less strict policies were adopted by governments worldwide in order to mitigate public health [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced a societal essay, based on thorough measures of individual and communitarian protection, ranging from compulsory social distancing to quarantine. Following WHO recommendations, more or less strict policies were adopted by governments worldwide in order to mitigate public health risks. In Portugal, the first state of emergency was declared on 18 March 2020 and renewed until 2 May 2020. During this time, most citizens stayed in quarantine with practical implications regarding their work and daily activities. This exploratory study, conducted within the pandemic crisis context in Portugal, intends to grasp specificities of the adaptation to the lock down and social isolation/distancing measures, concerning, specifically, teleworking conditions and physical activity practice. Data was collected from March to May 2020 through an online survey from 1148 participants of different age groups and literacy. Considering that COVID-19 features a mutual feedback loop of disease and social dynamics—governmental measures, civic adjustments, and individual coping—to know more about what was featured, the first wave may provide some cues to ensure a more efficient co-operation among social actors and, ultimately, tailor better public policies towards teleworking, online distance learning, and the promotion of healthy behaviours. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Analysis of Social Effects on Employment Promotion Policies for College Graduates Based on Data Mining for Online Use Review in China during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Healthcare 2021, 9(7), 846; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9070846 - 05 Jul 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2409
Abstract
As an important part of human resources, college graduates are the most vigorous, energetic, and creative group in society. The employment of college graduates is not only related to the vital interests of graduates themselves and the general public, but also related to [...] Read more.
As an important part of human resources, college graduates are the most vigorous, energetic, and creative group in society. The employment of college graduates is not only related to the vital interests of graduates themselves and the general public, but also related to the sustainable and healthy development of higher education and the country’s prosperity through science and education. However, the outbreak of COVID-19 at the end of 2019 has left China’s domestic labor and employment market in severe condition, which has a significant impact on the employment of college graduates. Based on the situation, the Chinese government has formulated a series of employment promotion policies for college graduates in accordance with local conditions to solve the current difficulties in employment of college graduates during the COVID-19Pandemic. Do these policies meet the expectations of the people? Is the policy implementation process reasonable? All these issues need to be tested and clarified urgently. This paper takes the employment promotion policy of college graduates under the COVID-19 as the research object, uses the PMC index model to screen the policy texts, obtains two perfect policy texts, and uses the Weibo comments to construct the evaluation model of policy measures support degree to analyze the social effects of employment promotion policies for college graduates. The results show that the public’s support degree with the employment promotion policies for college graduates under COVID-19 needs to be improved. Among them, the public has a neutral attitude towards position measures and transference measures but is obviously dissatisfied with subsidy measures and channel measures. Finally, suggestions for improving policy are given to make the employment policy in line with public opinion and effectively relieve the job hunting pressure of college graduates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Assessing the Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices of COVID-19 among Quarantine Hotel Workers in China
Healthcare 2021, 9(6), 772; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9060772 - 21 Jun 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1155
Abstract
During the pandemic, quarantine hotel workers face a higher risk of infection while they host quarantine guests from overseas. This study’s aim is to gain an understanding of the knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) of quarantine hotel workers in China. A total of [...] Read more.
During the pandemic, quarantine hotel workers face a higher risk of infection while they host quarantine guests from overseas. This study’s aim is to gain an understanding of the knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) of quarantine hotel workers in China. A total of 170 participants took part in a cross-sectional survey to assess the KAP of quarantine hotel workers in China, during the COVID-19 pandemic. The chi-square test, independent t-test, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), descriptive analysis, and binary logistic regression were used to examine the sociodemographic factors associated with KAP levels during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results show that 62.41% have good knowledge, 94.7% have a positive attitude towards COVID-19, but only 78.2% have good practices. Most quarantine hotel workers (95.3%) are confident that COVID-19 will be successfully controlled and that China is handling the COVID-19 crisis well (98.8%). Most quarantine hotel workers are also taking personal precautions, such as avoiding crowds (80.6%) and wearing facemasks (97.6%). The results evidence that quarantine hotel workers in China have acquired the necessary knowledge, positive attitudes and proactive practices in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The results of this study can provide a reference for quarantine hotel workers and their targeted education and intervention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
Article
An Examination of COVID-19 Mitigation Efficiency among 23 Countries
Healthcare 2021, 9(6), 755; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9060755 - 18 Jun 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 793
Abstract
The purpose of this paper was to compare the relative efficiency of COVID-19 transmission mitigation among 23 selected countries, including 19 countries in the G20, two heavily infected countries (Iran and Spain), and two highly populous countries (Pakistan and Nigeria). The mitigation efficiency [...] Read more.
The purpose of this paper was to compare the relative efficiency of COVID-19 transmission mitigation among 23 selected countries, including 19 countries in the G20, two heavily infected countries (Iran and Spain), and two highly populous countries (Pakistan and Nigeria). The mitigation efficiency for each country was evaluated at each stage by using data envelopment analysis (DEA) tools and changes in mitigation efficiency were analyzed across stages. Pearson correlation tests were conducted between each change to examine the impact of efficiency ranks in the previous stage on subsequent stages. An indicator was developed to judge epidemic stability and was applied to practical cases involving lifting travel restrictions and restarting the economy in some countries. The results showed that Korea and Australia performed with the highest efficiency in preventing the diffusion of COVID-19 for the whole period covering 105 days since the first confirmed case, while the USA ranked at the bottom. China, Japan, Korea, and Australia were judged to have recovered from the attack of COVID-19 due to higher epidemic stability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Shedding Light on the Direct and Indirect Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Lebanese Radiographers or Radiologic Technologists: A Crisis within Crises
Healthcare 2021, 9(3), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9030362 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1295
Abstract
With the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the need for radiologic procedures is increasing for the effective diagnosis and follow-up of pulmonary diseases. There is an immense load on the radiographers’ shoulders to cope with all the challenges associated with the pandemic. [...] Read more.
With the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the need for radiologic procedures is increasing for the effective diagnosis and follow-up of pulmonary diseases. There is an immense load on the radiographers’ shoulders to cope with all the challenges associated with the pandemic. However, amidst this crisis, Lebanese radiographers are also suffering from a socioeconomic crisis and record hyperinflation that have posed additional challenges. A cross-sectional study was conducted among registered Lebanese radiographers to assess the general, workplace conditions, health and safety, mental/psychologic, financial, and skill/knowledge development impacts. Despite applying an adapted safety protocol, institutions are neither providing free RT-PCR testing to their staff nor showing adequate support for infected staff members, thus causing distress about contracting the virus from the workplace. Aggravated by the deteriorating economic situation that affected the radiographers financially, they additionally suffer from severe occupational physical and mental burnout. Regardless of that, they used their free time during the lockdown for skill/knowledge development and have performed many recreational activities. This cross-sectional study highlighted the different ways the pandemic has impacted the radiographers: physically, psychologically, and financially. It aimed to shed light on what these frontline heroes are passing through in the midst of all these unprecedented crises. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Article
Nationwide Lockdown, Population Density, and Financial Distress Brings Inadequacy to Manage COVID-19: Leading the Services Sector into the Trajectory of Global Depression
Healthcare 2021, 9(2), 220; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020220 - 17 Feb 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1584
Abstract
The service industry provides distributive services, producer services, personal services, and social services. These services largely breakdowns due to restrictions on border movements, confined travel and transportation services, a decline in international tourists’ visitation, nationwide lockdowns, and maintaining social distancing in the population. [...] Read more.
The service industry provides distributive services, producer services, personal services, and social services. These services largely breakdowns due to restrictions on border movements, confined travel and transportation services, a decline in international tourists’ visitation, nationwide lockdowns, and maintaining social distancing in the population. Although these measures are highly needed to contain coronavirus, it decreases economic and financial activities in a country, which requires smart solutions to globally subsidize the services sector. The study used different COVID-19 measures, and its resulting impact on the services industry by using world aggregated data from 1975 through 2020. The study benefited from the Keynesian theory of aggregate demand that remains provided a solution to minimize economic shocks through stringent or liberalizing economic policies. The COVID-19 pandemic is more severe than the financial shocks of 2018 that affected almost all sectors of the globalized world, particularly the services sector, which has been severally affected by COVID-19; it is a high time to revisit economic policies to control pandemic recession. The study used quantiles regression and innovation accounting matrix to obtain ex-ante and ex-post analysis. The quantile regression estimates show that causes of death by communicable diseases, including COVID-19, mainly decline the share of services value added to the global GDP at different quantiles distribution. In contrast, word-of-mouth helps to prevent it from the transmission channel of coronavirus plague through information sharing among the general masses. The control of food prices and managing physical distancing reduces suspected coronavirus cases; however, it negatively affects the services sector’s value share. The smart lockdown and sound economic activities do not decrease coronavirus cases, while they support increasing the percentage of the services sector to the global GDP. The innovation accounting matrix suggested that smart lockdown, managing physical distancing, effective price control, and sound financial activities will help to reduce coronavirus cases that will further translate into increased services value-added for the next ten years. The social distancing will exert a more considerable variance error shock to the services industry, which indicates the viability of these measures to contained novel coronavirus over a time horizon. The study used the number of proxies to the COVID-19 measures on the service sector that can be continued with real-time variables to obtain more inferences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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Review

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Review
Beyond COVID-19 Pandemic: An Integrative Review of Global Health Crisis Influencing the Evolution and Practice of Corporate Social Responsibility
Healthcare 2021, 9(4), 453; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9040453 - 12 Apr 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2462
Abstract
Background: Global health crisis continues to drive the dynamics of corporate social responsibility (CSR) across industries with self-perpetuating momentum. From a historical point of view, more than a century of immense corporate fecundity has formed the ecological conditions and shaped current understanding of [...] Read more.
Background: Global health crisis continues to drive the dynamics of corporate social responsibility (CSR) across industries with self-perpetuating momentum. From a historical point of view, more than a century of immense corporate fecundity has formed the ecological conditions and shaped current understanding of the effect of public health on CSR. This study sought to examine the extent to which companies are able to balance their business interest with social interest through health-related CSR and how knowledge of them can help explain the potential impact of COVID-19. Method: This study employs a narrative review of current literature; however, the integrative strategy was combined with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) checklist to rigorously select the necessary articles for proper integrative synthesis. Results: We note that in the pursuit of their social responsibility, corporate enterprises struggle to balance the interest of society and their own interest. Genuine CSR activities such as donations are often undermined by unbridled and excessive desire to draw society on themselves to reap economic benefits are largely dominated by the need to advance. There are signals that enterprises might see COVID-19-related CSR as an entry door to increase corporate influence thereby commercializing the pandemic. Conclusions: The impact of COVID-19 on CSR is epochal. There is a moral obligation for enterprises to reform current risk assessments and collaborate more deeply with state agencies to invest in the health and safety inspections at the world place. CSR strategies must be proactive to endure other unknown pandemics with equal capacity to disrupt business operations. Companies must create innovative and regular activities to educate its stakeholders to become more committed to safeguarding future enterprise-based defense mechanism needed to diagnose, protect, treat, and rehabilitate victims and those threatened by pandemics and other emergencies that affect the stability of an organization to reduce its cost and protect revenue. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Economic Burden of Disease: The COVID-19 Case)
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