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As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in the USA in early 2020, it became clear that knowledge of the prevalence of antibodies to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) among asymptomatic individuals could inform public health policy decisions and provide insight into the impact of the infection on vulnerable populations. Two Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) Hubs and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) set forth to conduct a national seroprevalence survey to assess the infection’s rate of spread. This partnership was able to quickly design and launch the project by leveraging established research capacities, prior experiences in large-scale, multisite studies and a highly skilled workforce of CTSA hubs and unique experimental capabilities at the NIH to conduct a diverse prospective, longitudinal observational cohort of 11,382 participants who provided biospecimens and participant-reported health and behavior data. The study was completed in 16 months and benefitted from transdisciplinary teamwork, information technology innovations, multimodal communication strategies, and scientific partnership for rigor in design and analytic methods. The lessons learned by the rapid implementation and dissemination of this national study is valuable in guiding future multisite projects as well as preparation for other public health emergencies and pandemics.
This chapter explores the legal history of dispossession in the nineteenth century. It argues, first, that the failure to sign a treaty with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for land in Australia was a significant act of dispossession. While there was no declaration that Australia was ‘terra nullius’ in 1788, the failure to treat has been wielded since to dispossess Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of land rights and sovereignty. The chapter then explores dispossession through the legal history of expansion – the mixture of legality and lawlessness that fed the pastoral boom in Australia after 1824. With the advent of self-government, Australian legislation facilitating the breaking up of some pastoral leases into fee simple farms from 1861 effected a more complete dispossession by closing Country to Indigenous Australians. These varied processes of dispossession by tenure were fed by acts and omissions of jurisdiction. For many decades, Aboriginal people were not protected by settler law because their legal status was unclear. The designation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as subjects of the British crown after 1836 resulted in an uneven mix of hyper-policing and under-policing.
Despite extensive paleoenvironmental research on the postglacial history of the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, uncertainties remain regarding the region's deglaciation, vegetation development, and past hydroclimate. To elucidate this complex environmental history, we present new proxy datasets from Hidden and Kelly lakes, located in the eastern Kenai lowlands at the foot of the Kenai Mountains, including sedimentological properties (magnetic susceptibility, organic matter, grain size, and biogenic silica), pollen and macrofossils, diatom assemblages, and diatom oxygen isotopes. We use a simple hydrologic and isotope mass balance model to constrain interpretations of the diatom oxygen isotope data. Results reveal that glacier ice retreated from Hidden Lake's headwaters by ca. 13.1 cal ka BP, and that groundwater was an important component of Kelly Lake's hydrologic budget in the Early Holocene. As the forest developed and the climate became wetter in the Middle to Late Holocene, Kelly Lake reached or exceeded its modern level. In the last ca. 75 years, rising temperature caused rapid changes in biogenic silica content and diatom oxygen isotope values. Our findings demonstrate the utility of mass balance modeling to constrain interpretations of paleolimnologic oxygen isotope data, and that groundwater can exert a strong influence on lake water isotopes, potentially confounding interpretations of regional climate.
Little is known about mental health problems of children and young people (CYP) involved with public and private law family court proceedings, and how these CYP fare compared to those not involved in these significant disruptions to family life.
This study examined records of depression/anxiety in CYP involved in public and private law proceedings using linked population-level data across Wales.
Retrospective e-cohort study. We calculated the incidence of primary-care-recorded depression/anxiety among CYP involved in these proceedings and in a comparison group, using Poisson regression. Depression/anxiety outcomes following proceedings were evaluated using pairwise Cox regression, with age- and gender-matched controls of CYP who had no involvement with the courts.
CYP in the public group had twice the risk of depression (adjusted incidence rate ratio aIRR = 2.2; 95% CI 1.9–2.6) and 20% higher risk of anxiety (aIRR = 1.2; 95% CI 1.0–1.5) relative to the comparison group. The private group had 60% higher risk of depression (aIRR = 1.6; 95% CI 1.4–1.7) and 30% higher risk of anxiety (aIRR = 1.3; 95% CI 1.2–1.4). Following private law proceedings, CYP were more likely to have depression (hazard ratio HR = 1.9; 95% CI 1.7–2.1), and anxiety (HR = 1.4; 95% CI 1.2–1.6) than the control group. Following public proceedings, CYP were more likely to have depression (HR = 2.1; 95% CI 1.7–2.5). Incidence of anxiety or depression following court proceedings was around 4%.
Findings highlight the vulnerability of CYP involved in family court proceedings and increased risk of depression and anxiety. Schools, health professionals, social and family support workers have a role to play in identifying needs and ensuring CYP receive appropriate support before, during and after proceedings.
Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) shotgun metagenomics (metagenomics) attempts to sequence the entire genetic content straight from the sample. Diagnostic advantages lie in the ability to detect unsuspected, uncultivatable, or very slow-growing organisms.
To evaluate the clinical and economic effects of using WGS and metagenomics for outbreak management in a large metropolitan hospital.
Intensive care unit and burn unit of large metropolitan hospital.
Simulated intensive care unit and burn unit patients.
We built a complex simulation model to estimate pathogen transmission, associated hospital costs, and quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) during a 32-month outbreak of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB). Model parameters were determined using microbiology surveillance data, genome sequencing results, hospital admission databases, and local clinical knowledge. The model was calibrated to the actual pathogen spread within the intensive care unit and burn unit (scenario 1) and compared with early use of WGS (scenario 2) and early use of WGS and metagenomics (scenario 3) to determine their respective cost-effectiveness. Sensitivity analyses were performed to address model uncertainty.
On average compared with scenario 1, scenario 2 resulted in 14 fewer patients with CRAB, 59 additional QALYs, and $75,099 cost savings. Scenario 3, compared with scenario 1, resulted in 18 fewer patients with CRAB, 74 additional QALYs, and $93,822 in hospital cost savings. The likelihoods that scenario 2 and scenario 3 were cost-effective were 57% and 60%, respectively.
The use of WGS and metagenomics in infection control processes were predicted to produce favorable economic and clinical outcomes.
Food manufacturers are under increasing pressure to limit the amount of free sugars in their products. Many have reformulated products to replace sucrose, glucose and fructose with alternative sweeteners, but some of these have been associated with additional health concerns. Rare sugars are ‘monosaccharides and their derivatives that hardly exist in nature’, and there is increasing evidence that they could have health benefits. This review aimed to scope the existing literature in order to identify the most commonly researched rare sugars, to ascertain their proposed health benefits, mechanisms of action and potential uses and to highlight knowledge gaps. A process of iterative database searching identified fifty-five relevant articles. The reported effects of rare sugars were noted, along with details of the research methodologies conducted. Our results indicated that the most common rare sugars investigated are d-psicose and d-tagatose, with the potential health benefits divided into three topics: glycaemic control, body composition and CVD. All the rare sugars investigated have the potential to suppress postprandial elevation of blood glucose and improve glycaemic control in both human and animal models. Some animal studies have suggested that certain rare sugars may also improve lipid profiles, alter the gut microbiome and reduce pro-inflammatory cytokine expression. The present review demonstrates that rare sugars could play a role in reducing the development of obesity, type 2 diabetes and/or CVD. However, understanding of the mechanisms by which rare sugars may exert their effects is limited, and their effectiveness when used in reformulated products is unknown.
This is a longitudinal cohort study describing the demand, capacity and outcomes of adult specialist eating disorder in-patient services covering a population of 3.5 million in a South-East England provider collaborative before and since the COVID-19 pandemic, between July 2018 and March 2021.
There were 351 referrals for admission; 97% were female, 95% had a diagnosis of anorexia nervosa and 19% had a body mass index (BMI) <13. Referrals have increased by 21% since the start of pandemic, coinciding with reduced capacity. Waiting times have increased from 33 to 46 days. There were significant differences in outcomes between providers. A novel, integrated enhanced cognitive behaviour theapy treatment model showed a 25% reduction in length of stay and improved BMI on discharge (50% v. 16% BMI >19), compared with traditional eclectic in-patient treatment.
Integrated enhanced cognitive behaviour theapy reduced length of stay and improved outcomes, and can offer more effective use of healthcare resources.
Inpatient surgical site infections (SSIs) cause morbidity in children. The SSI rate among pediatric ambulatory surgery patients is less clear. To fill this gap, we conducted a multiple-institution, retrospective epidemiologic study to identify incidence, risk factors, and outcomes.
We identified patients aged <22 years with ambulatory visits between October 2010 and September 2015 via electronic queries at 3 medical centers. We performed sample chart reviews to confirm ambulatory surgery and adjudicate SSIs. Weighted Poisson incidence rates were calculated. Separately, we used case–control methodology using multivariate backward logistical regression to assess risk-factor association with SSI.
In total, 65,056 patients were identified by queries, and we performed complete chart reviews for 13,795 patients; we identified 45 SSIs following ambulatory surgery. The weighted SSI incidence following pediatric ambulatory surgery was 2.00 SSI per 1,000 ambulatory surgeries (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.37–3.00). Integumentary surgeries had the highest weighted SSI incidence, 3.24 per 1,000 ambulatory surgeries (95% CI, 0.32–12). The following variables carried significantly increased odds of infection: clean contaminated or contaminated wound class compared to clean (odds ratio [OR], 9.8; 95% CI, 2.0–48), other insurance type compared to private (OR, 4.0; 95% CI, 1.6–9.8), and surgery on weekend day compared to weekday (OR, 30; 95% CI, 2.9–315). Of the 45 instances of SSI following pediatric ambulatory surgery, 40% of patients were admitted to the hospital and 36% required a new operative procedure or bedside incision and drainage.
Our findings suggest that morbidity is associated with SSI following ambulatory surgery in children, and we also identified possible targets for intervention.
The occurrence of early childhood adversity is strongly linked to later self-harm, but there is poor understanding of how this distal risk factor might influence later behaviours. One possible mechanism is through an earlier onset of puberty in children exposed to adversity, since early puberty is associated with an increased risk of adolescent self-harm. We investigated whether early pubertal timing mediates the association between childhood adversity and later self-harm.
Participants were 6698 young people from a UK population-based birth cohort (ALSPAC). We measured exposure to nine types of adversity from 0 to 9 years old, and self-harm when participants were aged 16 and 21 years. Pubertal timing measures were age at peak height velocity (aPHV – males and females) and age at menarche (AAM). We used generalised structural equation modelling for analyses.
For every additional type of adversity; participants had an average 12–14% increased risk of self-harm by 16. Relative risk (RR) estimates were stronger for direct effects when outcomes were self-harm with suicidal intent. There was no evidence that earlier pubertal timing mediated the association between adversity and self-harm [indirect effect RR 1.00, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.00–1.00 for aPHV and RR 1.00, 95% CI 1.00–1.01 for AAM].
A cumulative measure of exposure to multiple types of adversity does not confer an increased risk of self-harm via early pubertal timing, however both childhood adversity and early puberty are risk factors for later self-harm. Research identifying mechanisms underlying the link between childhood adversity and later self-harm is needed to inform interventions.
Ambulatory healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) occur frequently in children and are associated with morbidity. Less is known about ambulatory HAI costs. This study estimated additional costs associated with pediatric ambulatory central-line–associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs), catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI), and surgical site infections (SSIs) following ambulatory surgery.
Retrospective case-control study.
Four academic medical centers.
Children aged 0–22 years seen between 2010 and 2015 and at risk for HAI as identified by electronic queries.
Chart review adjudicated HAIs. Charges were obtained for patients with HAIs and matched controls 30 days before HAI, on the day of, and 30 days after HAI. Charges were converted to costs and 2015 USD. Mixed-effects linear regression was used to estimate the difference-in-differences of HAI case versus control costs in 2 models: unrecorded charge values considered missing and a sensitivity analysis with unrecorded charge considered $0.
Our search identified 177 patients with ambulatory CLABSIs, 53 with ambulatory CAUTIs, and 26 with SSIs following ambulatory surgery who were matched with 382, 110, and 75 controls, respectively. Additional cost associated with an ambulatory CLABSI was $5,684 (95% confidence interval [CI], $1,005–$10,362) and $6,502 (95% CI, $2,261–$10,744) in the 2 models; cost associated with a CAUTI was $6,660 (95% CI, $1,055, $12,145) and $2,661 (95% CI, −$431 to $5,753); cost associated with an SSI following ambulatory surgery at 1 institution only was $6,370 (95% CI, $4,022–$8,719).
Ambulatory HAI in pediatric patients are associated with significant additional costs. Further work is needed to reduce ambulatory HAIs.
Longitudinal studies of patterns of healthcare contacts in those who die by suicide to identify those at risk are scarce.
To examine type and timing of healthcare contacts in those who die by suicide.
A population-based electronic case–control study of all who died by suicide in Wales, 2001–2017, linking individuals’ electronic healthcare records from general practices, emergency departments and hospitals. We used conditional logistic regression to calculate odds ratios, adjusted for deprivation. We performed a retrospective continuous longitudinal analysis comparing cases’ and controls’ contacts with health services.
We matched 5130 cases with 25 650 controls (5 per case). A representative cohort of 1721 cases (8605 controls) were eligible for the fully linked analysis. In the week before their death, 31.4% of cases and 15.6% of controls contacted health services. The last point of contact was most commonly associated with mental health and most often occurred in general practices. In the month before their death, 16.6 and 13.0% of cases had an emergency department contact and a hospital admission respectively, compared with 5.5 and 4.2% of controls. At any week in the year before their death, cases were more likely to contact healthcare services than controls. Self-harm, mental health and substance misuse contacts were strongly linked with suicide risk, more so when they occurred in emergency departments or as emergency admissions.
Help-seeking occurs in those at risk of suicide and escalates in the weeks before their death. There is an opportunity to identify and intervene through these contacts.