Impact of Social Distancing on COVID-19 and Other Related Infectious Disease Transmission: A Systematic Review

Authors

  • Nor Rumaizah Mohd Nordin Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Fadly Syah Arsad Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Puteri Sofia Nadira Megat Kamaruddin Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Muhammad Hilmi Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Mohd Faizal Madrim Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Mohd Rohaizat Hassan Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Syed Sharizman Syed Abdul Rahim Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Mohammad Saffree Jeffree Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Abdul Rahman Ramdzan Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Azman Atil Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, MalaysiaDepartment of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Khalid Mokti Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Muhammad Aklil Abd. Rahim Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
  • Zulkhairul Naim Bin Sidek Ahmad Department of Public Health Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.3889/oamjms.2021.7374

Keywords:

COVID-19, Social distancing, Impact, Pandemic, Infectious disease

Abstract

Background

 

Similar to other coronaviruses, COVID-19 is transmitted mainly by droplets and is highly transmissible through close proximity or physical contact with an infected person. Countries across the globe have implemented public health control measures to prevent onwards transmission and reduce burden on health care settings. Social or physical distancing was found to be one of appropriate measure based on previous experience with epidemic and pandemic contagious diseases. This study aims to review the latest evidence of the impact of social or physical distancing implemented during COVID-19 pandemic towards COVID-19 and other related infectious disease transmission.

 

Methodology

 

The study uses PRISMA review protocol and formulation of research question was based on PICO. The selected databases include Ovid MEDLINE and Scopus. Thorough identification, screening and eligibility process were done, revealed selected 8 articles. The articles then ranked in quality through MMAT.

 

Results

 

A total of eight papers included in this analysis. Five studies (USA, Canada, South Korea and the United Kingdom) showed physical distancing had resulted in a reduction in Covid-19 transmission. In comparison, three other studies (Australia, South Korea and Finland) showed a similar decline on other infectious diseases (Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), other sexually transmitted infections (STI), Influenza, Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and Vaccine-Preventive Disease (VPD). The degree of the distancing policy implemented differ between strict and lenient, with both result in effectiveness in reducing transmission of infectious disease.

 

Conclusion

 

Physical or social distancing may come in the form of extreme or lenient measure in effectively containing contagious disease like COVID-19, however the stricter the measure will give more proportionate impact towards the economy, education, mental health issues, morbidity and mortality of non-COVID-19 diseases. Since we need this measure to ensure the reduction of infectious diseases transmission in order to help flattening the curve which allow much needed time for healthcare system to prepare adequately to response, ‘Precision physical distancing” can be implemented which will have more benefit towards the survival of the community as a whole.

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Published

2021-11-22

How to Cite

1.
Mohd Nordin NR, Arsad FS, Megat Kamaruddin PSN, Hilmi M, Madrim MF, Hassan MR, Syed Abdul Rahim SS, Jeffree MS, Ramdzan AR, Atil A, Mokti K, Abd. Rahim MA, Sidek Ahmad ZNB. Impact of Social Distancing on COVID-19 and Other Related Infectious Disease Transmission: A Systematic Review. Open Access Maced J Med Sci [Internet]. 2021 Nov. 22 [cited 2024 May 26];9(F):601-7. Available from: https://oamjms.eu/index.php/mjms/article/view/7374

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Systematic Review Article

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