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Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infection can cause serious illness including haemolytic uraemic syndrome. The role of socio-economic status (SES) in differential clinical presentation and exposure to potential risk factors amongst STEC cases has not previously been reported in England. We conducted an observational study using a dataset of all STEC cases identified in England, 2010–2015. Odds ratios for clinical characteristics of cases and foodborne, waterborne and environmental risk factors were estimated using logistic regression, stratified by SES, adjusting for baseline demographic factors. Incidence was higher in the highest SES group compared to the lowest (RR 1.54, 95% CI 1.19–2.00). Odds of Accident and Emergency attendance (OR 1.35, 95% CI 1.10–1.75) and hospitalisation (OR 1.71, 95% CI 1.36–2.15) because of illness were higher in the most disadvantaged compared to the least, suggesting potential lower ascertainment of milder cases or delayed care-seeking behaviour in disadvantaged groups. Advantaged individuals were significantly more likely to report salad/fruit/vegetable/herb consumption (OR 1.59, 95% CI 1.16–2.17), non-UK or UK travel (OR 1.76, 95% CI 1.40–2.27; OR 1.85, 95% CI 1.35–2.56) and environmental exposures (walking in a paddock, OR 1.82, 95% CI 1.22–2.70; soil contact, OR 1.52, 95% CI 2.13–1.09) suggesting other unmeasured risks, such as person-to-person transmission, could be more important in the most disadvantaged group.
Introduction: Emergency department (ED) staff carry a high risk for the burnout syndrome of increased emotional exhaustion, depersonalization and decreased personal accomplishment. Previous research has shown that task-oriented coping skills were associated with reduced levels of burnout compared to emotion-oriented coping. ED staff at one hospital participated in an intervention to teach task-oriented coping skills. We hypothesized that the intervention would alter staff coping behaviors and ultimately reduce burnout. Methods: ED physicians, nurses and support staff at two regional hospitals were surveyed using the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) and the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS). Surveys were performed before and after the implementation of communication and conflict resolution skills training at the intervention facility (I) consisting of a one-day course and a small group refresher 6 to 15 months later. Descriptive statistics and multivariate analysis assessed differences in staff burnout and coping styles compared to the control facility (C) and over time. Results: 85/143 (I) and 42/110 (C) ED staff responded to the initial survey. Post intervention 46 (I) and 23(C) responded. During the two year study period there was no statistically significant difference in CISS or MBI scores between hospitals (CISS: (Pillai's trace = .02, F(3,63) = .47, p = .71, partial η2 = .02); MBI: (Pillai's trace = .01, F(3,63) = .11, p = .95, partial η2 = .01)) or between pre- and post-intervention groups (CISS: (Pillai's trace = .01, F(3,63) = .22, p = .88, partial η2 = .01); MBI: (Pillai's trace = .09, F(3,63) = 2.15, p = .10, partial η2 = .01)). Conclusion: We were not able to measure improvement in staff coping or burnout in ED staff receiving communication skills intervention over a two year period. Burnout is a multifactorial problem and environmental rather than individual factors may be more important to address. Alternatively, to demonstrate a measurable effect on burnout may require more robust or inclusive interventions.
Introduction: In Nova Scotia, under the Paramedics Providing Palliative Care program, paramedics can now manage symptom crises in patients with palliative care goals and often at home without the need to transport to hospital. Growing recognition that non-cancer conditions benefit from a palliative approach is expanding the program. Our team previously found treatment of pain and breathlessness is not optimized, pain scores are underutilized, and paramedics were more comfortable (pre-launch) with a palliative approach in cancer versus non-cancer conditions. Our objective was to compare symptom management in cancer versus non-cancer subgroup. Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study. The Electronic Patient Care Record and Special Patient Program were queried for patients with palliative goals from July 1, 2015 to July 1, 2016. Descriptive analysis was conducted and results were compared with a t-test and Bonferroni correction (alpha = p < 0.007). Results: 1909 unique patients; 765/1909 (40.1%) cancer and 1144/1909 (59.9%) non-cancer. Female sex: cancer 357/765 (46.7%), non-cancer 538/1144 (47.0%). Mean age cancer: 73.3 (11.65), non-cancer 77.7 (12.80). Top non-cancer conditions: COPD (495/1144, 43.3%), CHF (322/1144, 28.1%), stroke (172/1144, 15.0%) and dementia (149/1144, 13.0%). Comorbidities for cancer patients (range): 0 to 3; non-cancer 0 to 5. Most common chief complaint (CC) for cancer and non-cancer: respiratory distress, 10.8% vs 21.5%. Overall, no difference in proportion treated cancer vs non-cancer, 11.5% vs 10.1%, p = 0.35. Some difference in individual therapies: morphine 83/765 (10.8%) vs 55/1144 (4.8%), p < 0.001, hydromorphone 9/765 (1.2%) vs 2/1144 (0.2%), p = 0.014, salbutamol 38/765 (5.0%) vs 5/1144 (0.4%), p < 0.001 and ipratropium 27/765 (3.5%) vs 134/1144 (11.7%), p < 0.001, in addition to any support with home medication which is not queriable. Pre-treatment pain scores were documented more often than post-treatment in both groups (58.7% vs 25.6% (p < 0.001), 57.4% vs 26.9% (p < 0.001)). Conclusion: Non-cancer patients represent an important proportion of palliative care calls for paramedics. Cancer and non-cancer patients had very similar CC and received similar treatment, although low proportions, despite pre-launch findings that non-cancer conditions were likely to be undertreated. Pain scores remain underutilized. Further research into the underlying reason(s) is required to improve the support of non-cancer patients by paramedics.
Many novel therapeutic options for depression exist that are either not mentioned in clinical guidelines or recommended only for use in highly specialist services. The challenge faced by clinicians is when it might be appropriate to consider such ‘non-standard’ interventions. This analysis proposes a framework to aid this decision.
Declaration of interest
In the past 3 years R.H.M.W. has received support for research, expenses to attend conferences and fees for lecturing and consultancy work (including attending advisory boards) from various pharmaceutical companies including Astra Zeneca, Cyberonics, Eli Lilly, Janssen, LivaNova, Lundbeck, MyTomorrows, Otsuka, Pfizer, Roche, Servier, SPIMACO and Sunovion. D.M.B.C. has received fees from LivaNova for attending an advisory board. In the past 3 years A.J.C. has received fees for lecturing from Astra Zeneca and Lundbeck; fees for consulting from LivaNova, Janssen and Allergan; and research grant support from Lundbeck.
In the past 3 years A.C. has received fees for lecturing from pharmaceutical companies namely Lundbeck and Sunovion. In the past 3 years A.L.M. has received support for attending seminars and fees for consultancy work (including advisory board) from Medtronic Inc and LivaNova. R.M. holds joint research grants with a number of digital companies that investigate devices for depression including Alpha-stim, Big White Wall, P1vital, Intel, Johnson and Johnson and Lundbeck through his mindTech and CLAHRC EM roles. M.S. is an associate at Blueriver Consulting providing intelligence to NHS organisations, pharmaceutical and devices companies. He has received honoraria for presentations and advisory boards with Lundbeck, Eli Lilly, URGO, AstraZeneca, Phillips and Sanofi and holds shares in Johnson and Johnson. In the past 3 years P.R.A.S. has received support for research, expenses to attend conferences and fees for lecturing and consultancy work (including attending an advisory board) from life sciences companies including Corcept Therapeutics, Indivior and LivaNova. In the past 3 years P.S.T. has received consultancy fees as an advisory board member from the following companies: Galen Limited, Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Europe Ltd, myTomorrows and LivaNova. A.H.Y. has undertaken paid lectures and advisory boards for all major pharmaceutical companies with drugs used in affective and related disorders and LivaNova. He has received funding for investigator initiated studies from AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Lundbeck and Wyeth.
Objectives: This study investigated the relationship between close proximity to detonated blast munitions and cognitive functioning in OEF/OIF/OND Veterans. Methods: A total of 333 participants completed a comprehensive evaluation that included assessment of neuropsychological functions, psychiatric diagnoses and history of military and non-military brain injury. Participants were assigned to a Close-Range Blast Exposure (CBE) or Non-Close-Range Blast Exposure (nonCBE) group based on whether they had reported being exposed to at least one blast within 10 meters. Results: Groups were compared on principal component scores representing the domains of memory, verbal fluency, and complex attention (empirically derived from a battery of standardized cognitive tests), after adjusting for age, education, PTSD diagnosis, sleep quality, substance abuse disorder, and pain. The CBE group showed poorer performance on the memory component. Rates of clinical impairment were significantly higher in the CBE group on select CVLT-II indices. Exploratory analyses examined the effects of concussion and multiple blasts on test performance and revealed that number of lifetime concussions did not contribute to memory performance. However, accumulating blast exposures at distances greater than 10 meters did contribute to poorer performance. Conclusions: Close proximity to detonated blast munitions may impact memory, and Veterans exposed to close-range blast are more likely to demonstrate clinically meaningful deficits. These findings were observed after statistically adjusting for comorbid factors. Results suggest that proximity to blast should be considered when assessing for memory deficits in returning Veterans. Comorbid psychiatric factors may not entirely account for cognitive difficulties. (JINS, 2018, 24, 466–475)
The Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) conducts population-based surveillance for Campylobacter infection. For 2010 through 2015, we compared patients with Campylobacter jejuni with patients with infections caused by other Campylobacter species. Campylobacter coli patients were more often >40 years of age (OR = 1·4), Asian (OR = 2·3), or Black (OR = 1·7), and more likely to live in an urban area (OR = 1·2), report international travel (OR = 1·5), and have infection in autumn or winter (OR = 1·2). Campylobacter upsaliensis patients were more likely female (OR = 1·6), Hispanic (OR = 1·6), have a blood isolate (OR = 2·8), and have an infection in autumn or winter (OR = 1·7). Campylobacter lari patients were more likely to be >40 years of age (OR = 2·9) and have an infection in autumn or winter (OR = 1·7). Campylobacter fetus patients were more likely male (OR = 3·1), hospitalized (OR = 3·5), and have a blood isolate (OR = 44·1). International travel was associated with antimicrobial-resistant C. jejuni (OR = 12·5) and C. coli (OR = 12) infections. Species-level data are useful in understanding epidemiology, sources, and resistance of infections.
Accurate and reproducible patient positioning is a critical step in radiotherapy for breast cancer. This has seen the use of permanent skin markings becoming standard practice in many centres. Permanent skin markings may have a negative impact on long-term cosmetic outcome, which may in turn, have psychological implications in terms of body image. The aim of this study was to investigate the feasibility of using a semi-permanent tattooing device for the administration of skin marks for breast radiotherapy set-up.
Materials and methods
This was designed as a phase II double-blinded randomised-controlled study comparing our standard permanent tattoos with the Precision Plus Micropigmentation (PPMS) device method. Patients referred for radical breast radiotherapy were eligible for the study. Each study participant had three marks applied using a randomised combination of the standard permanent and PPMS methods and was blinded to the type of each mark. Follow up was at routine appointments until 24 months post radiotherapy. Participants and a blind assessor were invited to score the visibility of each tattoo at each follow-up using a Visual Analogue Scale. Tattoo scores at each time point and change in tattoo scores at 24 months were analysed by a general linear model using the patient as a fixed effect and the type of tattoo (standard or research) as covariate. A simple questionnaire was used to assess radiographer feedback on using the PPMS.
In total, 60 patients were recruited to the study, of which 55 were available for follow-up at 24 months. Semi-permanent tattoos were more visible at 24 months than the permanent tattoos. Semi-permanent tattoos demonstrated a greater degree of fade than the permanent tattoos at 24 months (final time point) post completion of radiotherapy. This was not statistically significant, although it was more apparent for the patient scores (p=0·071) than the blind assessor scores (p=0·27). No semi-permanent tattoos required re-marking before the end of radiotherapy and no adverse skin reactions were observed.
The PPMS presents a safe and feasible alternative to our permanent tattooing method. An extended period of follow-up is required to fully assess the extent of semi-permanent tattoo fade.
The livestock sector is one of the fastest growing subsectors of the agricultural economy and, while it makes a major contribution to global food supply and economic development, it also consumes significant amounts of natural resources and alters the environment. In order to improve our understanding of the global environmental impact of livestock supply chains, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has developed the Global Livestock Environmental Assessment Model (GLEAM). The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of GLEAM. Specifically, it explains the model architecture, methods and functionality, that is the types of analysis that the model can perform. The model focuses primarily on the quantification of greenhouse gases emissions arising from the production of the 11 main livestock commodities. The model inputs and outputs are managed and produced as raster data sets, with spatial resolution of 0.05 decimal degrees. The Global Livestock Environmental Assessment Model v1.0 consists of five distinct modules: (a) the Herd Module; (b) the Manure Module; (c) the Feed Module; (d) the System Module; (e) the Allocation Module. In terms of the modelling approach, GLEAM has several advantages. For example spatial information on livestock distributions and crops yields enables rations to be derived that reflect the local availability of feed resources in developing countries. The Global Livestock Environmental Assessment Model also contains a herd model that enables livestock statistics to be disaggregated and variation in livestock performance and management to be captured. Priorities for future development of GLEAM include: improving data quality and the methods used to perform emissions calculations; extending the scope of the model to include selected additional environmental impacts and to enable predictive modelling; and improving the utility of GLEAM output.
An acousto-optical spectrograph (AOS) with a high spectral resolution of 28 kHz has been developed for spectral line observations of objects, such as dark clouds, where the line-widths are low. It has been mounted on the 4-m-diameter millimetre-wave telescope at CSIRO Division of Radiophysics at Epping, NSW and successfully tested using 115 GHz Co observations of a sample of southern dark clouds. At 115 GHz the velocity resolution is 0.07 km s-1.
Observations of galactic HII regions in the longitude range 280° to 300° have recently been made at the OH-line frequencies 1612.231, 1665.402 and 1667.358 MHz using the Parkes radio telescope. Strong emission was observed at 1612 and 1665 MHz from a source near the regions of Hα emission RCW 48 and RCW 49 (Rodgers, Campbell and Whiteoak).
In this paper we present maps showing the distribution of HCO+ (J= 1→0 transition at 89.18855 GHz) in the direction of NGC 6334 as a function of radial velocity, lhe observations were carried out in May-June 1979 as part of a larger program of HCO+ observations (Batchelor et al. 1980, 1981) using the Epping 4-m millimetre-wave radio telescope.
In 1966 McGee, Gardner and Robinson carried out an exploratory search at 1665 MHz for OH in 26 thermal sources in the southern Milky Way and reported emission in 12 sources. Subsequent measurements by Robinson, Goss and Manchester confirmed emission from six of these and detected four additional OH emitters.
Following the detection of the 9 cm ground-state triplet of CH by Rydbeck et al. (1973), preliminary observations at the CH frequencies were made with the Parkes 64-m telescope (beamwidth ∼6′ arc) in December 1973 and January 1974. We have detected the CH lines in many galactic HII regions and in the direction of the galactic centre.
In a technical sense radio astronomers do not use the radio spectrum; they are listeners only, and when the science began they had to listen in the quiet spaces between transmitting services. Radio astronomy was first recognized as a service by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in 1959, and the first frequency allocations were then made for it as a ‘passive’ service. In 1963 and 1971 further allocations and frequency protection were obtained at specialized World Administrative Radio Conferences (WARC). The allocations were required for two purposes: (i) to protect the frequencies of the most important spectral lines of atoms and molecules, and (ii) to provide a series of bands for continuum observations. The general protection so far provided has been vital to the growth of the science, and its continuation is of the highest priority to the future life and development of radio astronomy.
We present an overview of the survey for radio emission from active stars that has been in progress for the last six years using the observatories at Fleurs, Molonglo, Parkes and Tidbinbilla. The role of complementary optical observations at the Anglo-Australian Observatory, Mount Burnett, Mount Stromlo and Siding Spring Observatories and Mount Tamborine are also outlined. We describe the different types of star that have been included in our survey and discuss some of the problems in making the radio observations.
Time variations in both the NGC 6334 and Orion OH sources have been reported by the Berkeley group. The variations in NGC 6334 have been partially confirmed by the group at the Lincoln Laboratory, who show that the variations are confined to the southern source, NGC 6334B. These latter authors find variable components at —6.6 and —7.9 km/s at 1665 MHz and at —8.9 km/s at 1667 MHz. Both features at 1665 MHz appear to vary, both up and down, with time; during 1966 October the characteristic rise time was nine days or less. The Berkeley results show that the linear polarization was constant during a two-week period in 1965 October. The Lincoln Laboratory results from 1966 October to 1967 June show that both the degree and sense of circular polarization remain constant as the three features vary with time.