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Burden of Covid-19 restrictions: national, regional and global estimates

Fink, G. and Tediosi, F. and Felder, S.. (2022) Burden of Covid-19 restrictions: national, regional and global estimates. EClinicalMedicine, 45. p. 101305.

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Abstract

Background: A growing literature has documented the high global morbidity, mortality and mental health burden associated with the current Covid-19 pandemic. In this paper, we aimed to quantify the total utility and quality of life loss resulting from Covid-19-related government restrictions imposed at the national, regional and global levels. Methods: We conducted quality of life online surveys in France, India, Italy, UK and the United States of America between June 21st and September 13th 2021, and used regression models to estimate the average quality of life loss due to light and severe restrictions in these countries. We then combined estimated disutility weights from the pooled sample with the latest data on Covid-19 restrictions exposure in each country to estimate the total disutility generated by restrictions at the national, regional and global level. We also embedded a discrete choice experiment (DCE) into the online survey to estimate average willingness to pay to avoid specific restrictions. Findings: A total of 947 surveys were completed. Thirty-five percent of respondents were female, and 69.5% were between 18 and 39 years old. The weighted average utility weight was 0.71 (95% CIs 0.69-0.74) for light restrictions, and 0.65 (0.63-0.68) for severe restrictions. At the global scale, this implies a total loss of 3259 million QALYs (95% 3021, 3496) as of September 6th, 2021, with the highest burden in lower and upper middle-income countries. Utility losses appear to be particularly large for closures of schools and daycares as well as restaurants and bars, and seem relatively small for wearing masks and travel restrictions. Interpretation: The results presented here suggest that the QALY losses due to restrictions are substantial. Future mitigation strategies should try to balance potential reductions in disease transmission achievable through specific measures against their respective impact on quality of life. Additional research is needed to determine differences in restriction-specific disutilities across countries, and to determine optimal policy responses to similar future disease threats. Funding: No funding was received for this project.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) > Household Economics and Health Systems Research > Health Systems and Policy (Tediosi)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Former Units within Swiss TPH > Household Economy (Fink)
06 Faculty of Business and Economics > Departement Wirtschaftswissenschaften > Professuren Wirtschaftswissenschaften
UniBasel Contributors:Fink, G√ľnther and Tediosi, Fabrizio
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
ISSN:2589-5370 (Electronic)2589-5370 (Linking)
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:13 Jan 2023 04:10
Deposited On:21 Dec 2022 19:03

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