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Toilet ownership in India has grown in recent years, but open defecation can persist even when rural households own latrines. There are at least two pathways through which social norms inhibit the use of toilets in rural India: (1) beliefs/expectations that others do not use toilets or latrines or find open defecation unacceptable; and (2) beliefs about ritual notions of purity that dissociate latrines from cleanliness. A survey in Uttar Pradesh, India, finds a positive correlation between latrine use and social norms at baseline. To confront these, an information campaign was piloted to test the effectiveness of rebranding latrine use and promoting positive social norms. The intervention targeted mental models by rebranding latrine use and associating it with cleanliness, and it made information about growing latrine use among latrine owners more salient. Following the intervention, open defecation practices went down across all treatment households, with the average latrine use score in treatment villages increasing by up to 11% relative to baseline. Large improvements were also observed in pro-latrine beliefs. This suggests that low-cost information campaigns can effectively improve pro-latrine beliefs and practices, as well as shift perceptions of why many people still find open defecation acceptable. Measuring social norms as described can help diagnose barriers to reducing open defecation, contribute to the quality of large-scale surveys and make development interventions more sustainable.
The objective of this study was to determine the evolution of fibrosis over time and its association with clinical status.
Children with repaired tetralogy of Fallot who had undergone at least two cardiac magnetic resonance examinations including T1 mapping at least 1 year apart were included.
Thirty-seven patients (12.7 ± 2.6 years, 61% male) were included. Right ventricular free wall T1 increased (913 ± 208 versus 1023 ± 220 ms; p = 0.02). Baseline cardiac magnetic resonance parameters did not predict a change in imaging markers or exercise tolerance. The right ventricular free wall per cent change correlated with left ventricular T1% change (r = 0.51, p = 0.001) and right ventricular mass Z-score change (r = 0.51, p = 0.001). T1 in patients with late gadolinium enhancement did not differ from the rest.
Increasing right ventricular free wall T1 indicates possible progressive fibrotic remodelling in the right ventricular outflow tract in this pilot study in children and adolescents with repaired tetralogy of Fallot. The value of T1 mapping both at baseline and during serial assessments will need to be investigated in larger cohorts with longer follow-up.
The over-utilization of plastic bags has pushed governments to implement a mix of policy measures ranging from banning the bags altogether to charging a fee for them. However, these policies are often accompanied by unintended consequences. Paying for plastic bags, in particular, may crowd out the negative emotions tied to their harmful impact on the environment, and may be subject to a ‘rebound effect’. In a randomized controlled experiment, I tested four different treatments aimed at nudging or encouraging consumers to carry their own bag to the stores. Specifically, I tested the effects of changing the framing of the question regarding carrier bags at the checkout till in stores using a yes/no response format, in which the yes option corresponds to the desired behaviour. The treatment with the yes/no framing format was found to have as strong and significant an effect as a charge of 5 pence per bag on discouraging single-use plastic bag consumption.
Introduction: Procedural skills are a key component of an emergency physician's practice. The Edmonton Zone is a health region that comprises twelve tertiary, urban community and rural community emergency departments (EDs) and represents over three hundred emergency physicians. This study describes the current attitudes toward procedural skill competency, current procedural skill practices, and the role for educational skills training sessions among emergency medicine physicians within a geographical health region. Methods: Multicenter descriptive cross-sectional survey of all emergency medicine physicians working at 12 emergency departments within the Edmonton Zone in 2019 (n = 274). The survey underwent several phases of systematic review; including item generation and reduction, pilot testing, and clinical sensibility testing. Survey items addressed current procedural skill performance frequency, perceived importance and confidence, current methods to maintain competence, barriers and facilitating factors to participation in a curriculum, preferred teaching methods, and desired frequency of practice for each procedural skill. Results: Survey response rate was 53.6%. Variability in frequency of performed procedures was apparent across the type of hospital sites. For majority of skills, there was a significantly positive correlation between the frequency at which a skill was performed and the perceived confidence performing said skill. There was inconsistency and no significant correlation with perceived importance, perceived confidence, or frequency performing a given skill and the desired frequency of training for that skill. Course availability (76.2%) and time (72.8%) are the most common identified barriers to participation in procedural skills training. Conclusion: This study summarized the current emergency department procedural skill practices and attitudes toward procedural skill competency and an educational curriculum among emergency medicine physicians in Edmonton. This represents a step towards targeted continuing professional development in the growing realm of competency-based medical education.
Introduction: Acute psychosis is a disruptive change in mental state that requires the mobilization of significant resources for its immediate treatment and ongoing management in the emergency department (ED). Cannabis-induced psychotic disorder (CIP) is one potential cause; however, the diagnosis may be overlooked due to limited understanding of the etiology of CIP. Methods: This study employed a retrospective cohort analysis of all CIP cases admitted from a tertiary care ED in Edmonton, Alberta between 10/2016 and 10/2018 – the month cannabis was legalized in Canada. Charts were identified based on a most responsible diagnosis of CIP, as defined by ICD-10 code F12.5. Two reviewers abstracted data using a standardized form, which was entered into a database; 10% of charts were analyzed by both reviewers to examine inter-rater reliability. Patients were excluded if there was any documentation of methamphetamine use within the week prior to presentation. Outcomes included management, symptom profile, and length of stay. Results: In total there were 44 cases of CIP identified in 40 unique patients during the two-year period. The largest age group of patients (n = 14, 35%) were between 15-20 years old and the median length of admission was 6 days. A minority of patients (n = 13, 32.5%) had a previous psychiatric diagnosis. A distinct clinical picture evolved during the summation of patient symptoms in the ED with 65% of patients (n = 26) exhibiting persecutory delusions and 52.5% endorsing auditory hallucinations (n = 21). Only four patients were found to have visual hallucinations, three of which also had auditory hallucinations. Most patients (n = 34, 85%) were treated with an antipsychotic medication in the ED and during their time as inpatients, but only 70% of patients were prescribed an antipsychotic medication at the time of discharge (n = 28). Conclusion: This study is the first of its kind describing a cohort of patients with CIP in a Canadian ED setting. The patients presenting to the ED who would later be diagnosed CIP were more likely to be 15-20 years old, experiencing persecutory delusions, and unlikely to be experiencing isolated visual hallucinations. With the recent legalization of cannabis in Canada, further prospective research is required to determine any changes in the characteristics, incidence, and prevalence of CIP, as well as data from other centers to look for any regional differences in the presentation and management of CIP.
Substance-related emergency department (ED) visits are rapidly increasing. Despite this finding, many EDs do not have access to on-site addiction services. This study characterized substance-related ED presentations and assessed the ED health care team's perceived need for an on-site rapid-access addiction clinic for direct patient referral from the ED.
This prospectively enrolled cohort study was conducted at an urban tertiary care ED from June to August 2018. Adult ED patients with problematic or high-risk substance use were enrolled by ED staff using a one-page form. The electronic and paper records from the index ED visit were reviewed. The primary outcome evaluated whether the ED health care team would have referred the patient to an on-site rapid-access addiction clinic, if one were available.
We received 557 enrolment forms and 458 were included in the analysis. Median age was 35 years, and 64% of included patients were male. Alcohol was the most commonly reported substance of problematic or high-risk use (60%). Previous ED visits within 7 days of the index visit were made by 28% of patients. The ED health care team indicated “Yes” for rapid-access addiction clinic referral from the ED for 66% of patients, with a mean of 4.3 patients referred per day during the study period.
At least four patients per day would have been referred to an on-site rapid-access addiction clinic from the ED, had one been available. This indicates a gap in care and collaborating with other sites that have successfully implemented this clinic model is an important next step.
Following a period of great enthusiasm about the role of public interest litigation (PIL) as a tool for social change in India, there is now skepticism. It is often argued that the stated objective of PILs in the 1980s, to defend the interests of a disadvantaged and marginalized population, has now been lost. Is the skepticism justified? This chapter provides an empirical analysis of beneficiary inequality in the Indian Supreme Court between 2009 and 2014. Based on an analysis of public interest cases at the Supreme Court, the chapter seeks to characterize who uses public interest litigation in India, who wins and who loses, and the policy areas that occupy the Court's PIL docket. In doing so, it discusses broader patterns in the use of public interest litigation in India.
Introduction: Patients with neurologic chief complaints comprised 12.5% of total visits to the University of Alberta Emergency Department (ED) in 2017. Symptoms are often subjective, transient, or atypical, leading to diagnostic uncertainty. Serious diagnoses require timely intervention to mitigate morbidity and mortality, however the proportion of patients who leave the ED without being seen (LWBS) has increased over time. We sought to analyze the characteristics and outcomes of patients with neurologic complaints who LWBS to identify opportunities for improvement in quality and safety of patient care. Methods: Data was extracted from the Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) and National Ambulatory Care Reporting System database to select adult patients presenting to the University of Alberta Hospital in 2017 with neurologic complaints as defined by the Canadian Triage Acuity Scale (CTAS). Using standard descriptive statistics we examined demographic and clinical characteristics to compare LWBS patients to all others. Results: Of 8,726 total visits 7.54% patients LWBS. These patients tended to be younger on average (39 vs 55 years), with a larger proportion presenting at night (37.69%) and on Monday. The majority were triaged CTAS 3 (68.69%). Their mean length of stay was shorter than all other visits (3.70 vs 9.51 hours). Headache (22.74%), extremity weakness/symptoms of CVA (20.19%), head injury (14.32%), seizure (8.28%), and sensory loss/paresthesia (8.14%) comprised the top 5 neurologic complaints, and were disproportionately presented in LWBS patients; headache (31.76%), head injury (23.71%), sensory loss/paresthesia (12.01%), seizure (11.25%). Patients who LWBS also re-presented to the ED within 72 hours (21.43%), more often than those discharged by a physician (8.29%). Conclusion: Patients presenting with neurologic complaints who LWBS are younger, tend to arrive at night, with less acute presentations, however they more frequently return to the ED within 72 hours than those seen and discharged. Patients who LWBS may benefit from education, physician assessment or closer nurse reassessment at triage to increase the quality and safety of care in the ED, reduce return visits and ED utilization.
Introduction: Emergency Department (ED) visits related to substance use are rapidly increasing. Despite this, few Canadian EDs have immediate access to addiction medicine specialists or on-site addiction medicine clinics. This study characterized substance-related ED presentations to an urban tertiary care ED and assessed need for an on-site rapid-access addiction clinic (RAAC). Methods: This prospective enrollment, retrospective chart review was conducted from June to August 2018. Adult patients presenting to the ED with a known or suspected substance use disorder were enrolled by any member of their ED care team using a 1-page form. Retrospective chart review of the index ED visit was conducted and the Emergency Department Information System was used to extract information related to the visit. A multivariable logistic regression model was fit to examine factors associated with recommendation for referral to a hypothetical on-site RAAC.This prospective enrollment, retrospective chart review was conducted from June to August 2018. Adult patients presenting to the ED with a known or suspected substance use disorder were enrolled by any member of their ED care team using a 1-page form. Retrospective chart review of the index ED visit was conducted and the Emergency Department Information System was used to extract information related to the visit. A multivariable logistic regression model was fit to examine factors associated with recommendation for referral to a hypothetical on-site RAAC. Results: Of the 557 enrolment forms received, 458 were included in the analysis. 64% of included patients were male and 36% were female, with a median age of 35.0 years. Polysubstance use was seen in 23% of patients, and alcohol was the most common substance indicated (60%), followed by stimulants (32%) and opioids (16%). The median ED length of stay for included patients was 483 minutes, compared to 354 minutes for all-comers discharged from the ED during the study period. 28% of patients had a previous ED visit within 7 days of the index visit, and an additional 17% had a visit in the preceding 30 days. The ED care team indicated ‘Yes’ for RAAC referral from the ED for 66% of patients, for a mean of 4.3 patients referred per day during the study period. Multivariable analysis showed that all substances (except cannabis) correlated to a statistically significant increase in likelihood for indicating ‘Yes’ for RAAC referral from the ED (alcohol, stimulants, opioids, polysubstance; p < 0.05). Patients presenting to the ED with a chief complaint related to substance use were also more likely to be referred (p = 0.01). Conclusion: This retrospective chart review characterized substance-related presentations at a Canadian urban tertiary care ED. Approximately four patients per day would have been referred to an on-site RAAC had one been available. The RAAC model has been implemented in other Canadian hospitals, and collaborating with these sites to begin developing this service would be an important next step.
Introduction: Morbidity and mortality from opioid overdoses continue to be a significant issue worldwide. In Alberta, there was a 40% increase in accidental opioid-related deaths from 2016 to 2017. In response to this crisis, Alberta Health Services has dramatically expanded access to Naloxone with a province-wide program for the distribution of take-home naloxone (THN) kits. Edmonton Zone ED's began dispensing these kits in 2016. The objectives of this study are to assess the trends in THN kit distribution from these sites in 2016 and 2017. Methods: The Edmonton Zone is a health region that comprises eleven tertiary, urban community and rural community ED's. THN kits in Edmonton Zone ED's were distributed through Pyxis, an automated medication dispensing and tracking system. Pyxis data for THN kits in 2016 and 2017 was extracted for each Edmonton Zone ED and the raw numbers and trends were examined. The National Ambulatory Care Reporting System database was also analyzed to determine the number of opioid related visits to Edmonton Zone ED's over that same time period. Results: A total of 686 THN kits in the Edmonton Zone were distributed over 2016 and 2017. The two tertiary centers distributed 502 kits, while the urban and rural community emergency departments collectively distributed 184 kits. Comparing 2016 (n = 245) to 2017 (n = 441), there was an 80% overall increase in the number of kits distributed, with tertiary center ED's dispensing 92% more kits, urban community ED's 51% more and rural ED's 63% more. Over the same time period, the number of opioid related visits increased in tertiary center ED's by 78%, in urban community sites by 26%, and in rural ED's by 67%. Almost all ED's increased their THN kit distribution from year to year, though there was one urban community site that dispensed fewer kits in the second year of the program. Conclusion: Edmonton Zone ED's dispensed 686 THN kits over two calendar years. Almost every ED distributed more kits in 2017 than 2016, which likely reflects successful uptake of this harm reduction intervention by frontline ED staff. However, there is still evidence of some imbalance in THN kit allocation as the percent increase in kits distributed varied widely based on the type of ED. This data can be used to pinpoint areas in the Edmonton Zone where barriers to THN access may still exist and guide continued quality improvement interventions to increase distribution and education.
Introduction: Patients with neurologic presenting complaints comprised 12.5% of total University of Alberta Emergency Department (ED) visits in 2017. This group of patients has high rates of EMS utilization, admission, and ED resources including diagnostic imaging and consult services. We sought to analyze the characteristics and outcomes of the patients with neurologic complaints who have an unscheduled return visit (URV) to the ED within 72 hours to identify opportunities for improvement in quality and safety of patient care. Methods: Data was extracted from the Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) and National Ambulatory Care System databases to select adult patients presenting to the University of Alberta hospital in 2017 with neurologic complaints as defined by the Canadian Triage and Acuity Scale (CTAS). We additionally selected for return visits to Edmonton Zone EDs within 72 hours. Using standard descriptive statistics, we examined demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with 72-hour URV. Results: Of 8,770 total visits, 674 (7.69%) had a 72-hour URV to an Edmonton zone ED. The URV rate was 9.0% in patients seen by a physician and discharged with approval and 23.4-33.3% in patients who left against medical advice (LAMA), prior to completion of treatment (LPCT), or without being seen by a physician (LWBS). The mean age of URV patients was 45.6 years, 56.5% were male, with a mean ED length of stay of 7.37 hours. The top 5 diagnoses for URV patients were headache, migraine, alcohol related disorders, concussion, and transient ischemic attack. 14.7% of URV patients were admitted, 13.5% LWBS, 1.6% LAMA, 1.6% LPCT, and 66.1% were discharged. Conclusion: The majority of neurologic complaint patients with URV within 72 hours are those who LAMA, LPTC, or LWBS at index visit. The admission rate for URV patients (14.7%) is lower than for the index ED visit (55%), however these patients have high LWBS rates. Identifying strategies to limit the LWBS rate for these patients would reduce return visits and improve the quality and safety of patient care.
Introduction: Procedural skills are a key component of an emergency physician's practice. The Edmonton Zone is a health region that comprises eleven tertiary, urban community and rural community emergency departments (EDs) that represents over three hundred emergency physicians. We report the initial stakeholder and site leadership needs assessment used to inform the development of a comprehensive continuing professional development (CPD) procedural skills curriculum for the Edmonton Zone. Methods: A list of procedural skills was distributed to the two Edmonton Zone Clinical Department Heads of Emergency Medicine (EM). This list was based on a previous Canadian study that utilized procedures from the Objectives of Training in EM. Based on perceived needs, twenty-five procedures were chosen by consensus from zone leadership and study authors as the initial focus for a skills curriculum. This list was sent via survey to the physician site leads of all EDs in the zone. Each site lead was asked to indicate the fifteen procedure curriculum they felt would most benefit their respective physician groups. Responses were collated to look at all departments as a group and stratified by the type of ED (tertiary, urban and rural community). Results: Every site chief of Edmonton Zone EDs completed the survey (100% response rate). Cricothyrotomy and pediatric intubation were the two procedures prioritized by every site. One procedure (ultrasound guided central lines) was prioritized by 10/11 sites while three procedures (ultrasound guided central lines, adult intubation and chest tube insertion) were specified by 9/11 sites as needs. Two procedures (pericardiocentesis and thoracotomy) were named as priorities only by tertiary centers. Conversely, three procedures (extensor tendon repair, anterior and posterior nasal packing) were highlighted by all rural sites, but not consistently by any urban sites. Conclusion: Over the next few years, competency-based CPD will emerge for physicians in practice. Our preliminary needs assessment showed that while a common zone-wide curriculum will be possible, targeted curricula tailored to the unique needs of the various types of EDs will also be necessary. This has implications for the resources and teaching requirements needed to deliver effective and recurring CPD courses to an entire health region. A targeted needs assessment to all Edmonton Zone physicians will be the next step to verify and further elaborate on these preliminary results.
Introduction: The geriatric patient population accounts for an ever increasing proportion of emergency department (ED) visits. Geriatric centered EDs are an emerging area of interest and research. Though there have been past studies looking at older patient presentations at individual hospitals, there is limited data describing geriatric presentations within an entire Canadian geographic health region. This study characterizes the population of older adults utilizing the EDs in the Edmonton Zone, a health region that comprises a total of eleven tertiary (T), urban community (UC) and rural community (RC) hospitals. Methods: This retrospective cross-sectional study targeted all patients ≥65 years presenting to the Edmonton Zone EDs between April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018. Data was extracted from the Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) database for ten EDs in the health region. Clinical and administrative data points were extracted and examined for each site. Results: We analyzed 100,813 ED geriatric patient visits during our study period, accounting for 18.7% of total ED visits to the Edmonton Zone. The five most common triage complaints at ED presentation were shortness of breath, abdominal pain, chest pain with cardiac features, general weakness, and back pain. CTAS scores 1-3 were assigned to 77.8% of geriatric presentations (T: 86.3%, UC: 77.4%, RC: 60.9%). 27.3% of geriatric patients had presented to an ED within the past 30 days (T: 30.0%, UC: 25.4%, RC: 27.7%). On average, 35.3% of older adult ED visits involved a consultation (T: 51.7%, UC 30.8%, RC 14.6%) and approximately 25% of geriatric patients were admitted to hospital during their ED visit (T: 42.8%, UC: 19.4%, RC: 7.1%). The average length of stay (LOS) in the ED (hh:mm) was 10:19 (T: 10:24, UC: 11:38, RC: 5:43). Overall, 2.4% of all geriatric patients left an ED without being seen after initial registration (T: 2.7%, UC: 2.2%, RC: 2.1%). Conclusion: Older adults represent a significant proportion of the ED visits in the Edmonton Zone. The triage acuity, LOS, re-presentation, consultation and admission rates varied based on the type of ED, which has implications for resource allocation within the health region. Our results can also direct future targeted initiatives and quality improvement projects to the various types of EDs in the Edmonton Zone, and facilitate planning of ED services for older adults in other health regions who have a similar geographic distribution of care sites.
To assess the prevalence and determinants of food insecurity among people living with HIV (PLWH) in Pune, India and its association with biomarkers known to confer increased risks of morbidity and mortality in this population.
Cross-sectional analysis assessing food insecurity using the standardized Household Food Insecurity Access Scale. Participants were dichotomized into two groups: food insecure and food secure. Logistic regression models were used to assess associations between socio-economic, demographic, clinical, biochemical factors and food insecurity.
Antiretroviral therapy (ART) centre of Byramjee Jeejeebhoy Government Medical College and Sassoon General Hospitals (BJGMC–SGH), Pune, a large publicly funded tertiary and teaching hospital in western India.
Adult (≥18 years) PLWH attending the ART centre between September 2015 and May 2016 who had received ART for either ≤7d (ART-naïve) or ≥1 year (ART-experienced).
Food insecurity was reported by 40 % of 483 participants. Independent risk factors (adjusted OR; 95 % CI) included monthly family income <INR 5000 (~70 USD; 13·2; CI 5·4, 32·2) and consuming ≥4 non-vegetarian meals per week (4·7; 1·9, 11·9). High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) ≥0·33 mg/dl (1·6; 1·04, 2·6) and d-dimer levels 0·19–0·31 µg/ml (1·6; 1·01, 2·6) and ≥0·32 µg/ml (1·9; 1·2, 3·2) were also associated with food insecurity.
More than a third of the study participants were food insecure. Furthermore, higher hs-CRP and d-dimer levels were associated with food insecurity. Prospective studies are required to understand the relationship between food insecurity, hs-CRP and d-dimer better.