Role of Non-pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) in COVID-19 Prevention and Control
Non-pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) are public health measures that aim to prevent and/or control COVID-19 transmission in the community. Achieving sustained public compliance with any NPI is critical for its effectiveness.
There are three main categories of NPI: 1) individual related interventions, such as hand hygiene, use of face masks, and respiratory hygiene; 2) environmental related interventions, such as cleaning and ventilation of indoor spaces; 3) population-related interventions, such as promoting physical distancing and limiting/restricting movement and the gathering of people.
COVID control depends on vaccination coverage, effectiveness and adherence to non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI). According to a simulation modelling study in US, controllable spread can be achieved when 70-80% of population is vaccinated as long as high adherence to NPI in the community. Relying on vaccination alone may delay the timing of controllable disease by several months, and this has important implications for the timing of lifting policies for NPIs. In addition, vaccine effectiveness in reducing viral spread is highly dependent on NPIs and high adherence to NPIs is needed during vaccination rollout [PLoS ONE 16(7): e0254456. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0254456].
(Author: Padauk May, MOH, NUG)