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Lusala (Dioscorea hirtiflora Benth. subsp. pedicellata Milne-Redh) is an important wild edible tuber foraged widely from natural forests in Southern Zambia, but at risk from overharvesting and deforestation. Its propagation was investigated in glasshouse studies to explore potential domestication and future in situ and ex situ genetic resources conservation. Almost all tubers planted with visible shoot buds produced vines, with no effect of tuber size on vine emergence or tuber yield. Few tubers without visible shoot buds at planting produced vines, but those that did not re-tuberized. The progeny provided good vine emergence and similar tuber yield, with vines from tubers produced by re-tuberization being more vigorous. Re-tuberization in the absence of vine emergence also occurred in other experiments. Minisetts cut from the proximal end of tubers provided better vine emergence (with more from 20-mm than 10-mm-long sections) and greater tuber yield than mid- or distal minisetts. Nodal stem cuttings rooted well, vined, and provided small tubers. This study shows that lusala can be propagated successfully from tubers, minisetts, nodal vine cuttings, or mini-tubers from nodal vine cuttings, for genetic resources conservation and/or domestication. Domestication is likely to be hampered by the long period required for vines to emerge and establish. More sustainable foraging, including re-planting in natural forests, is recommended to balance consumption of lusala in the region and promote its long-term conservation.
Introduction: The Maximizing Aging Using Volunteer Engagement in the ED (MAUVE + ED) program connects specially trained volunteers with older patients whose personal and social needs are not always met within the busy ED environment. The objective of this study was to describe the development and implementation of the MAUVE + ED program and the activities performed with older patients by its volunteers. Methods: The MAUVE + ED program was implemented in the ED (annual census 65,000) of a large academic tertiary hospital in Toronto, Ontario. Volunteers were trained to identify and approach older patients and others at greater risk for adverse outcomes, including poor patient experience, in the ED and invite such patients to participate in the program. The program is available to all patients >65 years, and those with confusion, patients who were alone, those with mobility issues, and patients with increased length of stay in the ED. Volunteers documented their activities after each patient encounter using a standardized paper-based data collection form. Results: Over the program's initial 6-month period, the MAUVE + ED volunteers reported a total of 896 encounters with 718 unique patients. The median (IQR) time a MAUVE volunteer spent with a patient was 10 (5, 20) minutes, with a range of 1 to 130 minutes. The median (IQR) number of patients seen per shift was 7 (6, 9), with a range of 1 to 16 patients per shift. The most common activities the volunteer assisted with were therapeutic activities/social visits (n = 859; 95.9%), orientation activities (n = 501; 55.9%), and hydration assistance (n = 231; 25.8%). The least common were mobility assistance (n = 36; 4.0%), and vision/hearing assistance (n = 13; 1.5%). Conclusion: Preliminary data suggest the MAUVE + ED volunteers were able to enrich the experience of older adults and their families/carers in the ED.
The short allele of the serotonin transporter gene 5’ promoter region polymorphism (5-HTTLPR) is reported by A. Caspi and others to be associated with susceptibility to depression and suicidality in response to stressful life events. We examined the relationship of a triallelic 5-HTTLPR polymorphism to stressful life events (SLE) and severity of major depression and suicidality.
Mood disorder subjects (N=191) and healthy volunteers (N=125), all Caucasians of European origin, were genotyped for the triallelic 5-HTTLPR polymorphism, two low expressing alleles (LG, S) and a higher expressing LA allele. All subjects underwent structured clinical interviews for DSM IV diagnoses, ratings of psychopathology, stressful life events, developmental history and suicidal behavior. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) 5-HIAA was assayed in a sub-sample.
Lower expressing alleles independently predicted greater depression severity and predicted greater severity of major depression with moderate-severe life events compared with the LA allele. No associations with suicidal behavior and CSF 5-HIAA were found.
Low expression transporter alleles explain 31% of the variance in major depression severity and increase the impact of stressful life events on severity. The biological phenotype responsible for these effects remains to be elucidated
Tourniquets (TQs) save lives. Although military-approved TQs appear more effective than improvised TQs in controlling exsanguinating extremity hemorrhage, their bulk may preclude every day carry (EDC) by civilian lay-providers, limiting availability during emergencies.
The purpose of the current study was to compare the efficacy of three novel commercial TQ designs to a military-approved TQ.
Nine Emergency Medicine residents evaluated four different TQ designs: Gen 7 Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT7; control), Stretch Wrap and Tuck Tourniquet (SWAT-T), Gen 2 Rapid Application Tourniquet System (RATS), and Tourni-Key (TK). Popliteal artery flow cessation was determined using a ZONARE ZS3 ultrasound. Steady state maximal generated force was measured for 30 seconds with a thin-film force sensor.
Success rates for distal arterial flow cessation were 89% CAT7; 67% SWAT-T; 89% RATS; and 78% TK (H 0.89; P = .83). Mean (SD) application times were 10.4 (SD = 1.7) seconds CAT7; 23.1 (SD = 9.0) seconds SWAT-T; 11.1 (SD = 3.8) seconds RATS; and 20.0 (SD = 7.1) seconds TK (F 9.71; P <.001). Steady state maximal forces were 29.9 (SD = 1.2) N CAT7; 23.4 (SD = 0.8) N SWAT-T; 33.0 (SD = 1.3) N RATS; and 41.9 (SD = 1.3) N TK.
All novel TQ systems were non-inferior to the military-approved CAT7. Mean application times were less than 30 seconds for all four designs. The size of these novel TQs may make them more conducive to lay-provider EDC, thereby increasing community resiliency and improving the response to high-threat events.
The UK has longstanding problems with psychiatry recruitment. Various initiatives aim to improve psychiatry's image among medical students, but involve research and none are student-led. Providing opportunities to take part in psychiatry research and quality improvement could increase the number of students who choose to enter the speciality.
We have developed the student psychiatry audit and research collaborative (SPARC), a student-led initiative for nationwide collaboration in high-quality research and audits.
Our model is inspired by the success of the UK Student audit and research in surgery (STARSurg). Area teams, located in medical schools, take part in multi-centre projects. The area teams consist of medical students, who have the main responsibility for collecting data; a junior doctor, to supervise the process; and a consultant, with overall responsibility for patient care. The data collected centrally and analysed by a team of medical students and doctors. Student leads from each site are named authors on resulting papers. All other students are acknowledged and are able to present the work.
We have completed our first audits in Cardiff and London; other sites will return data in 2017. Student feedback indicated a high level of satisfaction with the project and interest in psychiatry as a future career.
This initiative aims to tackle the recruitment problems in psychiatry by giving students a chance to take part in high quality research and audits.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Mechanistic models (MMs) have served as causal pathway analysis and ‘decision-support’ tools within animal production systems for decades. Such models quantitatively define how a biological system works based on causal relationships and use that cumulative biological knowledge to generate predictions and recommendations (in practice) and generate/evaluate hypotheses (in research). Their limitations revolve around obtaining sufficiently accurate inputs, user training and accuracy/precision of predictions on-farm. The new wave in digitalization technologies may negate some of these challenges. New data-driven (DD) modelling methods such as machine learning (ML) and deep learning (DL) examine patterns in data to produce accurate predictions (forecasting, classification of animals, etc.). The deluge of sensor data and new self-learning modelling techniques may address some of the limitations of traditional MM approaches – access to input data (e.g. sensors) and on-farm calibration. However, most of these new methods lack transparency in the reasoning behind predictions, in contrast to MM that have historically been used to translate knowledge into wisdom. The objective of this paper is to propose means to hybridize these two seemingly divergent methodologies to advance the models we use in animal production systems and support movement towards truly knowledge-based precision agriculture. In order to identify potential niches for models in animal production of the future, a cross-species (dairy, swine and poultry) examination of the current state of the art in MM and new DD methodologies (ML, DL analytics) is undertaken. We hypothesize that there are several ways via which synergy may be achieved to advance both our predictive capabilities and system understanding, being: (1) building and utilizing data streams (e.g. intake, rumination behaviour, rumen sensors, activity sensors, environmental sensors, cameras and near IR) to apply MM in real-time and/or with new resolution and capabilities; (2) hybridization of MM and DD approaches where, for example, a ML framework is augmented by MM-generated parameters or predicted outcomes and (3) hybridization of the MM and DD approaches, where biological bounds are placed on parameters within a MM framework, and the DD system parameterizes the MM for individual animals, farms or other such clusters of data. As animal systems modellers, we should expand our toolbox to explore new DD approaches and big data to find opportunities to increase understanding of biological systems, find new patterns in data and move the field towards intelligent, knowledge-based precision agriculture systems.
Introduction: Little is known about the variety of roles volunteers play in the emergency department (ED), and the potential impact they have on patient experience. The objective of this scoping review was to identify published and unpublished reports that described volunteer programs in EDs, and determine how these programs impacted patient experiences or outcomes. Methods: Electronic searches of Medline, EMBASE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and CINAHL were conducted and reference lists were hand-searched. A grey literature search was also conducted (Web of Science, ProQuest, Canadian Business and Current Affairs Database ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global). Two reviewers independently screened titles and abstracts, reviewed full text articles, and extracted data. Results: The search strategy yielded 4,589 potentially relevant citations. After eliminating duplicate citations and articles that did not meet eligibility criteria, 87 reports were included in the review. Of the included reports, 18 were peer-reviewed articles, 6 were conference proceedings, 59 were magazine or newspaper articles, and 4 were graduate dissertations or theses. Volunteer activities were categorized as non-clinical tasks (e.g., provision of meals/snacks, comfort items and mobility assistance), navigation, emotional support/communication, and administrative duties. 52 (59.8%) programs had general volunteers in the ED and 35 (40.2%) had volunteers targeting a specific patient population, including pediatrics, geriatrics, patients with mental health and addiction issues and other vulnerable populations. 20 (23.0%) programs included an evaluative component describing how ED volunteers affected patient experiences and outcomes. Patient satisfaction, follow-up and referral rates, ED and hospital costs and length of stay, subsequent ED visits, medical complications, and malnutrition in the hospital were all reported to be positively affected by volunteers in the ED. Conclusion: This scoping review demonstrates the important role volunteers play in enhancing patient and caregiver experience in the ED. Future volunteer engagement programs implemented in the ED should be formally described and evaluated to share their success and experience with others interested in implementing similar programs in the ED.
Approximately 70% of the 30 000 known bee (Hymenoptera) species and most flower-visiting, solitary wasps (Hymenoptera) nest in the ground. However, nesting behaviours of most ground-nesting bees and wasps are poorly understood. Habitat loss, including nesting habitat, threatens populations of ground-nesting bees and wasps. Most ground-nesting bee and wasp studies implement trapping methods that capture foraging individuals, but provide little insight into the nesting preferences of these taxa. Some researchers have suggested that emergence traps may provide a suitable means by which to determine ground-nesting bee and wasp abundance. We sought to evaluate nest-site selection of ground-nesting bees and wasps using emergence traps in two study systems: (1) planted wildflower enhancement plots and fallow control plots in agricultural land; and (2) upland pine and hammock habitat in forests. Over the course of three years (2015–2017), we collected 306 ground-nesting bees and wasps across all study sites from emergence traps. In one study, we compared captures per trap between coloured pan traps and emergence traps and found that coloured pan traps captured far more ground-nesting bees and wasps than did emergence traps. Based on our emergence trap data, our results also suggest ground-nesting bees and wasps are more apt to nest within wildflower enhancement plots than in fallow control plots, and in upland pine habitats than in hammock forests. In conclusion, emergence traps have potential to be a unique tool to gain understanding of ground-nesting bee and wasp habitat requirements.
The aim of this study was to assess the impact of a urinary tract infection (UTI) management bundle to reduce the treatment of asymptomatic bacteriuria (AB) and to improve the management of symptomatic UTIs.
Before-and-after intervention study.
Consecutive sample of inpatients with positive single or mixed-predominant urine cultures collected and reported while admitted to the hospital.
The UTI management bundle consisted of nursing and prescriber education, modification of the reporting of positive urine cultures, and pharmacists’ prospective audit and feedback. A retrospective chart review of consecutive inpatients with positive urinary cultures was performed before and after implementation of the management bundle.
Prior to the implementation of the management bundle, 276 patients were eligible criteria for chart review. Of these 276 patients, 165 (59·8%) were found to have AB; of these 165 patients with AB, 111 (67·3%) were treated with antimicrobials. Moreover, 268 patients met eligibility criteria for postintervention review. Of these 268, 133 patients (49·6%) were found to have AB; of these 133 with AB, 22 (16·5%) were treated with antimicrobials. Thus, a 75·5% reduction of AB treatment was achieved. Educational components of the bundle resulted in a substantial decrease in nonphysician-directed urine sample submission. Adherence to a UTI management algorithm improved substantially in the intervention period, with a notable decrease in fluoroquinolone prescription for empiric UTI treatment.
A UTI management bundle resulted in a dramatic improvement in the management of urinary tract infection, particularly a reduction in the treatment of AB and improved management of symptomatic UTI.
Introduction: Emergency departments (ED) across Canada acknowledge the need to transform in order to provide high quality care for the increasing proportion of older patients presenting for treatment. Older people are more complex than younger ED users. They have a disproportionately high use of EDs, increased rates of hospitalization, and are more likely to suffer adverse events. The objective of this initiative was to develop minimum standards for the care of older people in the emergency department. Methods: We created a panel of international leaders in geriatrics and emergency medicine to develop a policy framework on minimum standards for care of older people in the ED. We conducted a literature review of international guidelines, frameworks, recommendations, and best practices for the acute care of older people and developed a draft standards document. This preliminary document was circulated to interdisciplinary members of the International Federation of Emergency Medicine (IFEM) geriatric emergency medicine (GEM) group. Following review, the standards were presented to the IFEM clinical practice group. At each step, verbal, written and online feedback were gathered and integrated into the final minimum standards document. Results: Following the developmental process, a series of eight minimum standard statements were created and accepted by IFEM. These standards utilise the IFEM Framework for Quality and Safety in the ED, and are centred on the recognition that older people are a core population of emergency health service users whose care needs are different from those of children and younger adults. They cover key areas, including the overall approach to older patients, the physical environment and equipment, personnel and training, policies and protocols, and strategies for navigating the health-care continuum. Conclusion: These standards aim to improve the evaluation, management and integration of care of older people in the ED in an effort to improve outcomes. The minimum standards represent a first step on which future activities can be built, including the development of specific indicators for each of the minimum standards. The standards are designed to apply across the spectrum of EDs worldwide, and it is hoped that they will act as a catalyst to change.