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Intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) influence the interactions of a person with their environment and generate economic and socioeconomic costs for the person, their family and society.
To estimate costs of lost workforce participation due to informal caring for people with intellectual disability or autism spectrum disorders by estimating lost income to individuals, lost taxation payments to federal government and increased welfare payments.
We used a microsimulation model based on the Australian Bureau of Statistics' Surveys of Disability, Ageing and Carers (population surveys of people aged 15–64), and projected costs of caring from 2015 in 5-year intervals to 2030.
The model estimated that informal carers of people with intellectual disability and/or ASD in Australia had aggregated lost income of AU$310 million, lost taxation of AU$100 million and increased welfare payments of AU$204 million in 2015. These are projected to increase to AU$432 million, AU$129 million and AU$254 million for income, taxation, and welfare respectively by 2030. The income gap of carers for people with intellectual disability and/or ASD is estimated to increase by 2030, meaning more financial stress for carers.
Informal carers of people with intellectual disability and/or ASD experience significant loss of income, leading to increased welfare payments and reduced taxation revenue for governments; these are all projected to increase. Strategic policies supporting informal carers wishing to return to work could improve the financial and psychological impact of having a family member with intellectual disability and/or ASD.
An X-ray fluorescence analysis unit has been automated with a multi-position sample changer, a stepping motor to position the spectrometer, and computer addressable switches to control the selection of crystal, detector, collimator, and beam filter. The unit can be controlled off-line through a Teletype or on-line with a computer. This computer utilizes a multi-user program for the simultaneous operation of the fluorescence analysis unit and two diffractometers. Programming the system for any desired analytical or research procedure is accomplished using an expanded version of BASIC.
To assess variability in antimicrobial use and associations with infection testing in pediatric ventilator-associated events (VAEs).
Descriptive retrospective cohort with nested case-control study.
Pediatric intensive care units (PICUs), cardiac intensive care units (CICUs), and neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) in 6 US hospitals.
Children≤18 years ventilated for≥1 calendar day.
We identified patients with pediatric ventilator-associated conditions (VACs), pediatric VACs with antimicrobial use for≥4 days (AVACs), and possible ventilator-associated pneumonia (PVAP, defined as pediatric AVAC with a positive respiratory diagnostic test) according to previously proposed criteria.
Among 9,025 ventilated children, we identified 192 VAC cases, 43 in CICUs, 70 in PICUs, and 79 in NICUs. AVAC criteria were met in 79 VAC cases (41%) (58% CICU; 51% PICU; and 23% NICU), and varied by hospital (CICU, 20–67%; PICU, 0–70%; and NICU, 0–43%). Type and duration of AVAC antimicrobials varied by ICU type. AVAC cases in CICUs and PICUs received broad-spectrum antimicrobials more often than those in NICUs. Among AVAC cases, 39% had respiratory infection diagnostic testing performed; PVAP was identified in 15 VAC cases. Also, among AVAC cases, 73% had no associated positive respiratory or nonrespiratory diagnostic test.
Antimicrobial use is common in pediatric VAC, with variability in spectrum and duration of antimicrobials within hospitals and across ICU types, while PVAP is uncommon. Prolonged antimicrobial use despite low rates of PVAP or positive laboratory testing for infection suggests that AVAC may provide a lever for antimicrobial stewardship programs to improve utilization.
To establish if the relatively low rate of involuntary psychiatric admission in a suburban area between 2007 and 2011 was maintained in 2014/2015, and explore key correlates of involuntary status.
We used existing hospital records and data sources to extract rates and selected potential correlates of voluntary and involuntary admission in south west Dublin (catchment area: 273 419 people) over 18 months in 2014/2015 and compared these with published national data from the census and Health Research Board.
The rate of involuntary admission in the suburban area studied between 2007 and 2011 was 33.8 involuntary admissions per 100 000 population annually, which was lower than the national rate (48.6). By 2014/2015, the rate of involuntary admission in this area had risen to 46.8 involuntary admissions per 100 000 population annually, similar to the national rate (44.9). Nevertheless, the overall (voluntary and involuntary) admission rate in the suburban area (346.7 admissions per 100 000 population annually) was still lower the national rate (387.9), owing to a lower rate of voluntary admission in the suburban area (299.9) compared to Ireland as a whole (342.9). Multi-variable testing demonstrated that diagnosis was the strongest driver of involuntary admission in the suburban area: this area had 28.5 involuntary admissions per 100 000 population annually with schizophrenia or related disorders, compared to 18.9 nationally. Schizophrenia and related disorders accounted for 60.9% of involuntary admissions in the suburban area compared to 42.1% nationally.
Schizophrenia is the strongest driver of involuntary admission in the suburban area in this study.
Research shows that cognitive rehabilitation (CR) has the potential to improve goal performance and enhance well-being for people with early stage Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This single subject, multiple baseline design (MBD) research investigated the clinical efficacy of an 8-week individualised CR intervention for individuals with early stage AD.
Three participants with early stage AD were recruited to take part in the study. The intervention consisted of eight sessions of 60–90 minutes of CR. Outcomes included goal performance and satisfaction, quality of life, cognitive and everyday functioning, mood, and memory self-efficacy for participants with AD; and carer burden, general mental health, quality of life, and mood of carers.
Visual analysis of MBD data demonstrated a functional relationship between CR and improvements in participants’ goal performance. Subjective ratings of goal performance and satisfaction increased from baseline to post-test for three participants and were maintained at follow-up for two. Baseline to post-test quality of life scores improved for three participants, whereas cognitive function and memory self-efficacy scores improved for two.
Our findings demonstrate that CR can improve goal performance, and is a socially acceptable intervention that can be implemented by practitioners with assistance from carers between sessions. This study represents one of the promising first step towards filling a practice gap in this area. Further research and randomised-controlled trials are required.
Accommodating cattle indoors during the winter is widely practiced throughout Europe. There is currently no legislation surrounding the space allowance and floor type that should be provided to cattle during this time, however, concerns have been raised regarding the type of housing systems currently in use. The objective of the study was to investigate the effect of space allowance and floor type on performance and welfare of finishing beef heifers. Continental crossbred heifers (n=240: mean initial live; weight, 504 (SD 35.8) kg) were blocked by breed, weight and age and randomly assigned to one of four treatments; (i) 3.0 m2, (ii) 4.5 m2 and (iii) 6.0 m2 space allowance per animal on a fully slatted concrete floor and (iv) 6.0 m2 space allowance per animal on a straw-bedded floor, for 105 days. Heifers were offered a total mixed ration ad libitum. Dry matter intake was recorded on a pen basis and refusals were weighed back twice weekly. Heifers were weighed, dirt scored and blood sampled every 3 weeks. Whole blood was analysed for complete cell counts and serum samples were assayed for metabolite concentrations. Behaviour was recorded continuously using IR cameras from days 70 to 87. Heifers’ hooves were inspected for lesions at the start of the study and again after slaughter. Post-slaughter, carcass weight, conformation and fat scores and hide weight were recorded. Heifers housed at 4.5 m2 had a greater average daily live weight gain (ADG) than those on both of the other concrete slat treatments; however, space allowance had no effect on carcass weight. Heifers accommodated on straw had a greater ADG (0.15 kg) (P<0.05), hide weight (P<0.01) better feed conversion ratio (P<0.05) and had greater dirt scores (P<0.05) at slaughter than heifers accommodated on concrete slats at 6.0 m2. The number of heifers lying at any one time was greater (P<0.001) on straw than on concrete slats. Space allowance and floor type had no effect on the number of hoof lesions gained or on any of the haematological or metabolic variables measured. It was concluded that increasing space allowance above 3.0 m2/animal on concrete slats was of no benefit to animal performance but it did improve animal cleanliness. Housing heifers on straw instead of concrete slats improved ADG and increased lying time; however carcass weight was not affected.
Our understanding of the complex relationship between schizophrenia symptomatology and etiological factors can be improved by studying brain-based correlates of schizophrenia. Research showed that impairments in value processing and executive functioning, which have been associated with prefrontal brain areas [particularly the medial orbitofrontal cortex (MOFC)], are linked to negative symptoms. Here we tested the hypothesis that MOFC thickness is associated with negative symptom severity.
This study included 1985 individuals with schizophrenia from 17 research groups around the world contributing to the ENIGMA Schizophrenia Working Group. Cortical thickness values were obtained from T1-weighted structural brain scans using FreeSurfer. A meta-analysis across sites was conducted over effect sizes from a model predicting cortical thickness by negative symptom score (harmonized Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms or Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale scores).
Meta-analytical results showed that left, but not right, MOFC thickness was significantly associated with negative symptom severity (βstd = −0.075; p = 0.019) after accounting for age, gender, and site. This effect remained significant (p = 0.036) in a model including overall illness severity. Covarying for duration of illness, age of onset, antipsychotic medication or handedness weakened the association of negative symptoms with left MOFC thickness. As part of a secondary analysis including 10 other prefrontal regions further associations in the left lateral orbitofrontal gyrus and pars opercularis emerged.
Using an unusually large cohort and a meta-analytical approach, our findings point towards a link between prefrontal thinning and negative symptom severity in schizophrenia. This finding provides further insight into the relationship between structural brain abnormalities and negative symptoms in schizophrenia.
Rural and remote regions tend to be characterised by poorer socioeconomic conditions than urban areas, yet findings regarding differences in mental health between rural and urban areas have been inconsistent. This suggests that other features of these areas may reduce the impact of hardship on mental health. Little research has explored the relationship of financial hardship or deprivation with mental health across geographical areas.
Data were analysed from a large longitudinal Australian study of the mental health of individuals living in regional and remote communities. Financial hardship was measured using items from previous Australian national population research, along with measures of psychological distress (Kessler-10), social networks/support and community characteristics/locality, including rurality/remoteness (inner regional; outer regional; remote/very remote). Multilevel logistic regression modelling was used to examine the relationship between hardship, locality and distress. Supplementary analysis was undertaken using Australian Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey data.
2161 respondents from the Australian Rural Mental Health Study (1879 households) completed a baseline survey with 26% from remote or very remote regions. A significant association was detected between the number of hardship items and psychological distress in regional areas. Living in a remote location was associated with a lower number of hardships, lower risk of any hardship and lower risk of reporting three of the seven individual hardship items. Increasing hardship was associated with no change in distress for those living in remote areas. Respondents from remote areas were more likely to report seeking help from welfare organisations than regional residents. Findings were confirmed with sensitivity tests, including replication with HILDA data, the use of alternative measures of socioeconomic circumstances and the application of different analytic methods.
Using a conventional and nationally used measure of financial hardship, people residing in the most remote regions reported fewer hardships than other rural residents. In contrast to other rural residents, and national population data, there was no association between such hardship and mental health among residents in remote areas. The findings suggest the need to reconsider the experience of financial hardship across localities and possible protective factors within remote regions that may mitigate the psychological impact of such hardship.
Few studies have validated ICD-9-CM diagnosis codes for surgical site infection (SSI), and none have validated coding for noninfectious wound complications after mastectomy.
To determine the accuracy of International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) diagnosis codes in health insurer claims data to identify SSI and noninfectious wound complications, including hematoma, seroma, fat and tissue necrosis, and dehiscence, after mastectomy.
We reviewed medical records for 275 randomly selected women who were coded in the claims data for mastectomy with or without immediate breast reconstruction and had an ICD-9-CM diagnosis code for a wound complication within 180 days after surgery. We calculated the positive predictive value (PPV) to evaluate the accuracy of diagnosis codes in identifying specific wound complications and the PPV to determine the accuracy of coding for the breast surgical procedure.
The PPV for SSI was 57.5%, or 68.9% if cellulitis-alone was considered an SSI, while the PPV for cellulitis was 82.2%. The PPVs of individual noninfectious wound complications ranged from 47.8% for fat necrosis to 94.9% for seroma and 96.6% for hematoma. The PPVs for mastectomy, implant, and autologous flap reconstruction were uniformly high (97.5%–99.2%).
Our results suggest that claims data can be used to compare rates of infectious and noninfectious wound complications after mastectomy across facilities, even though PPVs vary by specific type of postoperative complication. The accuracy of coding was highest for cellulitis, hematoma, and seroma, and a composite group of noninfectious complications (fat necrosis, tissue necrosis, or dehiscence).
The evolution of planetary nebulae is controlled largely by hardening of the radiation field from the central star and by hydrodynamic interactions between the “fast wind” and the slower red giant wind. These processes also result in the heating and dissociation of H2 and in the production of H2 vibration–rotation lines in the near-infrared. Both mechanisms tend to produce high gas temperatures and, at high densities, a thermal population of states. Kinematic studies provide vital information on the geometry and expansion of the nebulae and offer a discriminant between shocked and photodissociated regions.
Obesity in young adults is an increasing health problem in Australia and many other countries. Evidence-based information is needed to guide interventions that reduce the obesity-promoting elements in tertiary-education environments. In a food environmental audit survey, 252 outlets were audited across seven institutions: three universities and four technical and further education institutions campuses. A scoring instrument called the food environment-quality index was developed and used to assess all food outlets on these campuses. Information was collated on the availability, accessibility and promotion of foods and beverages and a composite score (maximum score=148; higher score indicates healthier outlets) was calculated. Each outlet and the overall campus were ranked into tertiles based on their ‘healthiness’. Differences in median scores for each outcome measure were compared between institutions and outlet types using one-way ANOVA with post hoc Scheffe’s testing, χ2 tests, Kruskal–Wallis H test and the Mann–Whitney U test. Binomial logistic regressions were used to compare the proportion of healthy v. unhealthy food categories across different types of outlets. Overall, the most frequently available items were sugar-sweetened beverages (20 % of all food/drink items) followed by chocolates (12 %), high-energy (>600 kJ/serve) foods (10 %), chips (10 %) and confectionery (10 %). Healthy food and beverages were observed to be less available, accessible and promoted than unhealthy options. The median score across all outlets was 72 (interquartile range=7). Tertiary-education food environments are dominated by high-energy, nutrient-poor foods and beverages. Interventions to decrease availability, accessibility and promotion of unhealthy foods are needed.
Emission features from ionized carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide were measured in the 1900- to 4300-Å spectral region. The Lyman-α 1216-Å line of atomic hydrogen and the 1304-, 1356-, and 2972-Å lines of atomic oxygen were observed.
The National Healthcare Safety Network classifies breast operations as clean procedures with an expected 1%–2% surgical site infection (SSI) incidence. We assessed differences in SSI incidence following mastectomy with and without immediate reconstruction in a large, geographically diverse population.
Retrospective cohort study
Commercially insured women aged 18–64 years with ICD-9-CM procedure or CPT-4 codes for mastectomy from January 1, 2004 through December 31, 2011
Incident SSIs within 180 days after surgery were identified by ICD-9-CM diagnosis codes. The incidences of SSI after mastectomy with and without immediate reconstruction were compared using the χ2 test.
From 2004 to 2011, 18,696 mastectomy procedures among 18,085 women were identified, with immediate reconstruction in 10,836 procedures (58%). The incidence of SSI within 180 days following mastectomy with or without reconstruction was 8.1% (1,520 of 18,696). In total, 49% of SSIs were identified within 30 days post-mastectomy, 24.5% were identified 31–60 days post-mastectomy, 10.5% were identified 61–90 days post-mastectomy, and 15.7% were identified 91–180 days post-mastectomy. The incidences of SSI were 5.0% (395 of 7,860) after mastectomy only, 10.3% (848 of 8,217) after mastectomy plus implant, 10.7% (207 of 1,942) after mastectomy plus flap, and 10.3% (70 of 677) after mastectomy plus flap and implant (P<.001). The SSI risk was higher after bilateral compared with unilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction (11.4% vs 9.4%, P=.001) than without (6.1% vs 4.7%, P=.021) immediate reconstruction.
SSI incidence was twice that after mastectomy with immediate reconstruction than after mastectomy alone. Only 49% of SSIs were coded within 30 days after operation. Our results suggest that stratification by procedure type facilitates comparison of SSI rates after breast operations between facilities.
Background: There are no disease modifying agents for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Pathologically, AD is associated with the misfolding of two peptides: beta-amyloid (plaques) and tau (tangles). Methods: Using large-scale computer simulations, we modelled the misfolding of both beta-amyloid and tau, identifying a common conformational motif (CCM; i.e. an abnormal peptide shape), present in both beta-amyloid and tau, that promotes their misfolding. We screened a library of 11.8 million compounds against this in silico model of protein misfolding, identifying three novel molecular classes of putative therapeutics as anti-protein misfolding agents. We synthesized approximately 400 new chemical entity drug-like molecules in each of these three classes (i.e. 1200 potential drug candidates). These were comprehensively screened in a battery of five in vitro protein oligomerization assays. Selected compounds were next evaluated in the APP/PS1 doubly transgenic mouse model of AD. Results: Two new classes of molecules were identified with the ability to block the oligomerization of both beta-amyloid and tau. These compounds are drug-like with good pharmacokinetic properties and are brain-penetrant. They exhibit excellent efficacy in transgenic mouse models. Conclusion: Computer aided drug design has enabled the discovery of novel drug-like molecules able to inhibit both tau and beta-amyloid misfolding.
Gram-negative bacilli frequently cause epidemics in high-risk newborn intensive care units. Recently, an epidemic caused by a multiply-resistant K. pneumoniae, serotype 21, occurred in the Vanderbilt University intensive care nursery. The background of this outbreak included an increasing endemic nosocomial sepsis rate, operation of the facility in excess of rated capacity, and increasingly inadequate nurse-to-patient staffing ratios. The epidemic lasted 11 weeks; 26 (12%) of the 232 infants at risk in the unit became colonized. Five infants developed systemic illness and one died. Cohorting, reinforcement of strict handwashing and isolation procedures, and closure of the unit to outborn admissions resulted in rapid termination of the outbreak. Followup studies performed on infants colonized with the epidemic bacterium demonstrated persistent fecal shedding up to 13 months following discharge from the hospital. This epidemic had a detrimental influence on high-risk newborn and obstetric health care delivery in an area encompassing portions of three states. Under a system of progressively more sophisticated referral units, nosocomial infections occurring at a tertiary center can have an impact on other hospitals within the network.