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Various organizational-level attributes are being implemented in primary healthcare to improve healthcare delivery. There is a need to describe the distribution and nature of these attributes and explore differences across practices.
The aim of this study was to better understand organizational attributes of primary care teams, focusing specifically on team composition, nursing roles, and strategies that support chronic disease management.
We employed a cross-sectional survey design. Team composition, nursing roles, availability of health services, and chronic disease management activities were described using the ‘Measuring Organizational Attributes of Primary Health Care Survey.’
A total of 76% (n=26 out of 34) of practice locations completed the survey, including family health teams (FHT; n=21) and community health centers (CHC; n=4). Nurse practitioners (NPs) and registered nurses (RNs) were the most common non-physician providers, and CHCs had a greater proportion of non-physician providers than FHTs. There was overlap in roles performed by NPs and RNs, and registered practical nurses engaged in fewer roles compared with NPs and RNs. A greater proportion of FHTs had systematic chronic disease management services for hypertension, depression and Alzheimer’s disease compared with CHC practices. The ‘Measuring Organizational Attributes of Primary Health Care Survey’ was a useful tool to highlight variability in organizational attributes across PHC practices. Nurses are prominent within PHC practices, engaging in a wide range of roles related to chronic disease management, suggesting a need to better understand their contributions to patient care to optimize their roles.
In 2011, the US Institute of Medicine updated the definition of vitamin D inadequacy to serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentration of 30–<50 nmol/l and of deficiency to serum 25(OH)D < 30 nmol/l. We describe the prevalence of these conditions according to these definitions, seasonal variation in 25(OH)D and predictors of serum 25(OH)D concentrations among working, white women.
Participants recorded lifestyle factors and dietary intake and provided fasting blood samples for measurement of serum 25(OH)D in both summer and winter. Predictors of serum 25(OH)D variation were analysed using linear regression and generalized linear mixed models.
Kingston General Hospital in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, from April 2008 to July 2009.
Female premenopausal nurses (n 83) working full-time rotating shifts.
Deficient or inadequate vitamin D status was observed in 9 % of participants following summer/autumn and in 13 % following winter/spring. Predictors of serum 25(OH)D concentration were vitamin D supplement use, tanning bed use and season. Tanning bed use increased serum 25(OH)D by 23·24 nmol/l (95 % CI 8·78, 37·69 nmol/l, P = 0·002) on average.
According to the 2011 Institute of Medicine bone health guidelines, over 10 % of nurses had deficient or inadequate vitamin D status following winter. Higher serum concentrations were associated with use of tanning beds and vitamin D supplements. As health promotion campaigns and legal restrictions are successful in reducing tanning bed use among women, our data suggest that increased prevalence of vitamin D inadequacy and deficiency may be a consequence, and that low vitamin D status will need to be countered with supplementation.
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