It is unsurprising that the three new entries to February’s top ten most read articles in BMJ Open are COVID-19 related.
Debuting this month in second place is an ecological study from Pana et al. Using publicly available data from 37 countries that had reported at least 25 daily deaths up to 8 June 2020, Pana et al. aimed to assess the country-level determinants of the severity of the first global wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. They found that, of all the country-level determinants included in the multivariable model, international travel was the main determinant of severity. Although they looked at other factors, such as BCG vaccination coverage, the associations between these and country-level mean mortality rates were weaker and needed to be interpreted cautiously in light of the ecological study design.
The two other new entries are both study protocols. In third place is Simpson et al. detailing the aims and methods of their observational study. They plan to monitor the daily/weekly progress of the COVID-19 epidemic and evaluate the effectiveness of therapeutic interventions in approximately 5.4 million individuals registered in general practices across Scotland. In eighth place is Espiritu et al.’s retrospective cohort study protocol where they aim to determine the neurological manifestations and factors associated with clinical outcomes in COVID-19 infection. Although both studies are yet to be completed, they will certainly add to the growing literature on this devastating pandemic.
Here’s the full list of papers that were the most read in BMJ Open during February 2021:
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