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Social relationships are important among persons experiencing homelessness, but there is little research on changes in social networks among persons moving into permanent supportive housing (PSH). Using data collected as part of a longitudinal study of 405 adults (aged 39+) moving into PSH, this study describes network upheaval during this critical time of transition. Interviews conducted prior to and after three months of living in PSH assessed individual-level (demographics, homelessness history, health, and mental health) and social network characteristics, including network size and composition (demographics, relationship type, and social support). Interviewers utilized network member characteristics to assess whether network members were new or sustained between baseline and three months post-housing. Multilevel logistic regression models assessed characteristics of network members associated with being newly gained or persisting in networks three months after PSH move-in. Results show only one-third of social networks were retained during the transition to PSH, and veterans, African Americans, and other racial/ethnic minorities, and those living in scattered site housing, were more likely to experience network disruption. Relatives, romantic partners, and service providers were most likely to be retained after move-in. Some network change was moderated by tie strength, including the retention of street-met persons. Implications are discussed.
An evidence-based emergency department (ED) atrial fibrillation and flutter (AFF) pathway was developed to improve care. The primary objective was to measure rates of new anticoagulation (AC) on ED discharge for AFF patients who were not AC correctly upon presentation.
This is a pre-post evaluation from April to December 2013 measuring the impact of our pathway on rates of new AC and other performance measures in patients with uncomplicated AFF solely managed by emergency physicians. A standardized chart review identified demographics, comorbidities, and ED treatments. The primary outcome was the rate of new AC. Secondary outcomes were ED length of stay (LOS), referrals to AFF clinic, ED revisit rates, and 30-day rates of return visits for congestive heart failure (CHF), stroke, major bleeding, and death.
ED AFF patients totalling 301 (129 pre-pathway [PRE]; 172 post-pathway [POST]) were included; baseline demographics were similar between groups. The rates of AC at ED presentation were 18.6% (PRE) and 19.7% (POST). The rates of new AC on ED discharge were 48.6 % PRE (95% confidence interval [CI] 42.1%-55.1%) and 70.2% POST (62.1%-78.3%) (20.6% [p<0.01; 15.1-26.3]). Median ED LOS decreased from 262 to 218 minutes (44 minutes [p<0.03; 36.2-51.8]). Thirty-day rates of ED revisits for CHF decreased from 13.2% to 2.3% (10.9%; p<0.01; 8.1%-13.7%), and rates of other measures were similar.
The evidence-based pathway led to an improvement in the rate of patients with new AC upon discharge, a reduction in ED LOS, and decreased revisit rates for CHF.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
Training for the clinical research workforce does not sufficiently prepare workers for today’s scientific complexity; deficiencies may be ameliorated with training. The Enhancing Clinical Research Professionals’ Training and Qualifications developed competency standards for principal investigators and clinical research coordinators.
Clinical and Translational Science Awards representatives refined competency statements. Working groups developed assessments, identified training, and highlighted gaps.
Forty-eight competency statements in 8 domains were developed.
Training is primarily investigator focused with few programs for clinical research coordinators. Lack of training is felt in new technologies and data management. There are no standardized assessments of competence.
The translation of discoveries to drugs, devices, and behavioral interventions requires well-prepared study teams. Execution of clinical trials remains suboptimal due to varied quality in design, execution, analysis, and reporting. A critical impediment is inconsistent, or even absent, competency-based training for clinical trial personnel.
In 2014, the National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS) funded the project, Enhancing Clinical Research Professionals’ Training and Qualifications (ECRPTQ), aimed at addressing this deficit. The goal was to ensure all personnel are competent to execute clinical trials. A phased structure was utilized.
This paper focuses on training recommendations in Good Clinical Practice (GCP). Leveraging input from all Clinical and Translational Science Award hubs, the following was recommended to NCATS: all investigators and study coordinators executing a clinical trial should understand GCP principles and undergo training every 3 years, with the training method meeting the minimum criteria identified by the International Conference on Harmonisation GCP.
We anticipate that industry sponsors will acknowledge such training, eliminating redundant training requests. We proposed metrics to be tracked that required further study. A separate task force was composed to define recommendations for metrics to be reported to NCATS.
This report uses 6-year outcomes of the Oregon Divorce Study to examine the processes by which parenting practices affect deviant peer association during two developmental stages: early to middle childhood and late childhood to early adolescence. The participants were 238 newly divorced mothers and their 5- to 8-year-old sons who were randomly assigned to Parent Management Training—Oregon Model (PMTO®) or to a no-treatment control group. Parenting practices, child delinquent behavior, and deviant peer association were repeatedly assessed from baseline to 6 years after baseline using multiple methods and informants. PMTO had a beneficial effect on parenting practices relative to the control group. Two stage models linking changes in parenting generated by PMTO to children's growth in deviant peer association were supported. During the early to middle childhood stage, the relationship of improved parenting practices on deviant peer association was moderated by family socioeconomic status (SES); effective parenting was particularly important in mitigating deviant peer association for lower SES families whose children experience higher densities of deviant peers in schools and neighborhoods. During late childhood and early adolescence, the relationship of improved parenting to youths' growth in deviant peer association was mediated by reductions in the growth of delinquency during childhood; higher levels of early delinquency are likely to promote deviant peer association through processes of selective affiliation and reciprocal deviancy training. The results are discussed in terms of multilevel developmental progressions of diminished parenting, child involvement in deviancy producing processes in peer groups, and increased variety and severity of antisocial behavior, all exacerbated by ecological risks associated with low family SES.
Patients with venous thromboembolism (VTE) (deep vein thrombosis [DVT] and pulmonary embolism [PE]) are commonly treated as outpatients. Traditionally, patients are anticoagulated with low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) and warfarin, resulting in return visits to the ED. The direct oral anticoagulant (DOAC) medications do not require therapeutic monitoring or repeat visits; however, they are more expensive. This study compared health costs, from the hospital and patient perspectives, between traditional versus DOAC therapy.
A chart review of VTE cases at two tertiary, urban hospitals from January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012 was performed to capture historical practice in VTE management, using LMWH/warfarin. This historical data were compared against data derived from clinical trials, where a DOAC was used. Cost minimization analyses comparing the two modes of anticoagulation were completed from hospital and patient perspectives.
Of the 207 cases in the cohort, only 130 (63.2%) were therapeutically anticoagulated (international normalized ratio 2.0–3.0) at emergency department (ED) discharge; patients returned for a mean of 7.18 (range: 1–21) visits. Twenty-one (10%) were admitted to the hospital; 4 (1.9%) were related to VTE or anticoagulation complications. From a hospital perspective, a DOAC (in this case, rivaroxaban) had a total cost avoidance of $1,488.04 per VTE event, per patient. From a patient perspective, it would cost an additional $204.10 to $349.04 over 6 months, assuming no reimbursement.
VTE management in the ED has opportunities for improvement. A DOAC is a viable and cost-effective strategy for VTE treatment from a hospital perspective and, depending on patient characteristics and values, may also be an appropriate and cost-effective option from a patient perspective.
The montane inselbergs of northern Mozambique have been comparatively little-studied, yet recent surveys have shown they have a rich biodiversity with numerous endemic species. Here we present the main findings from a series of scientific expeditions to one of these inselbergs, Mt Mabu, and discuss the conservation implications. Comprehensive species lists of plants, birds, mammals and butterflies are presented. The most significant result was the discovery of a c. 7,880 ha block of undisturbed rainforest, most of it at medium altitude (900–1,400 m), a forest type that is not well represented elsewhere. It is possibly the largest continuous block of this forest type in southern Africa. To date, 10 new species (plants, mammals, reptiles and butterflies) have been confirmed from Mt Mabu, even though sampling effort for most taxonomic groups has been low. The species assemblages indicate a relatively long period of isolation and many species found are at the southern limit of their range. Conservationists are now faced with the challenge of how best to protect Mt Mabu and similar mountains in northern Mozambique, and various ways that this could be done are discussed.
We sought to estimate the period prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) skin and soft tissue infection (SSTI) and evaluate risk factors for MRSA SSTI in an emergency department (ED) population.
We carried out a cohort study with a nested case–control design. Patients presenting to our ED with a wound culture and a discharge diagnosis of SSTI between January 2003 and September 2004 were dichotomized as MRSA positive or negative. Fifty patients with MRSA SSTI matched by calendar time to 100 controls with MRSA-negative SSTI had risk factors assessed using multivariate conditional logistic regression.
Period prevalence of MRSA SSTI was 54.8% (95% confidence interval [CI] 50.2%–59.4%). The monthly period prevalence increased from 21% in January 2003 to 68% in September 2004 (p < 0.01). Risk factors for MRSA SSTI were injection drug use (IDU) (odds ratio [OR] 4.6, 95% CI 1.4–16.1), previous MRSA infection and colonization (OR 6.4, 95% CI 2.1–19.8), antibiotics in 8 weeks preceding index visit (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.2–8.1), diabetes mellitus (OR 4.1, 95% CI 1.4–12.1), abscess (OR 5.6, 95% CI 1.8–17.1) and admission to hospital in previous 12 months (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.1–11.2).
The period prevalence of MRSA SSTI between January 2003 and September 2004 was 54.8% at our institution. There was a marked increase in the monthly period prevalence from the beginning to the end of the study. Risk factors are IDU, previous MRSA infection and colonization, prescriptions for antibiotics in previous 8 weeks and admission to hospital in the preceding 12 months. On the basis of local prevalence and risk factor patterns, emergency physicians should consider MRSA as a causative agent for SSTI.