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To evaluate the impact of a hard stop in the electronic health record (EHR) on inappropriate gastrointestinal pathogen panel testing (GIPP).
We used a quasi-experimental study to evaluate testing before and after the implementation of an EHR alert to stop inappropriate GIPP ordering.
Midwest academic medical center.
Hospitalized patients with diarrhea for which GIPP testing was ordered, between January 2016 through March 2017 (period 1) and April 2017 through June 2018 (period 2).
A hard stop in the EHR prevented clinicians from ordering a GIPP more than once per admission or in patients hospitalized for >72 hours.
During period 1, 1,587 GIPP tests were ordered over 212,212 patient days, at a rate of 7.48 per 1,000 patient days. In period 2, 1,165 GIPP tests were ordered over 222,343 patient days, at a rate of 5.24 per 1,000 patient days. The Poisson model estimated a 30% reduction in total GIPP ordering rates between the 2 periods (relative risk, 0.70; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.63–0.78; P < .001). The rate of inappropriate tests ordered decreased from 21.5% to 4.9% between the 2 periods (P < .001). The total savings calculated factoring only GIPP orders that triggered the hard stop was ∼$67,000, with potential savings of $168,000 when factoring silent best-practice alert data.
A simple hard stop alert in the EHR resulted in significant reduction of inappropriate GIPP testing, which was associated with significant cost savings. Clinicians can practice diagnostic stewardship by avoiding ordering this test more than once per admission or in patients hospitalized >72 hours.
The 11th revision to the WHO International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) identified complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) as a new condition. There is a pressing need to identify effective CPTSD interventions.
We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of psychological interventions for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), where participants were likely to have clinically significant baseline levels of one or more CPTSD symptom clusters (affect dysregulation, negative self-concept and/or disturbed relationships). We searched MEDLINE, PsycINFO, EMBASE and PILOTS databases (January 2018), and examined study and outcome quality.
Fifty-one RCTs met inclusion criteria. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), exposure alone (EA) and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) were superior to usual care for PTSD symptoms, with effects ranging from g = −0.90 (CBT; k = 27, 95% CI −1.11 to −0.68; moderate quality) to g = −1.26 (EMDR; k = 4, 95% CI −2.01 to −0.51; low quality). CBT and EA each had moderate–large or large effects on negative self-concept, but only one trial of EMDR provided useable data. CBT, EA and EMDR each had moderate or moderate–large effects on disturbed relationships. Few RCTs reported affect dysregulation data. The benefits of all interventions were smaller when compared with non-specific interventions (e.g. befriending). Multivariate meta-regression suggested childhood-onset trauma was associated with a poorer outcome.
The development of effective interventions for CPTSD can build upon the success of PTSD interventions. Further research should assess the benefits of flexibility in intervention selection, sequencing and delivery, based on clinical need and patient preferences.
This paper reports on a randomized control trial involving children less than 3 years old and their mothers who were regarded at risk of maltreating their children by referral agencies. Mothers’ risk status derived from a heavy trauma burden (average exposure over the first 18 years of their lives to 10 possible adverse childhood experiences [ACEs] was >5), mental health challenges (15%–28% had experienced a prior psychiatric hospitalization), and prior removal of a child to foster care (20%). Mothers were randomly assigned to either a widely used parenting class known as Systematic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP) or the Group Attachment-Based Intervention (GABI), a multifamily 26-week treatment. The resulting mother–child pairs available for consideration in this baseline versus end-of-treatment report were 35 families in the STEP arm and 43 families in the GABI arm. The focus of this paper is the outcome measure of observed parent–child relationship assessed with the Coding of Interactive Behavior (Feldman, 1998) collected at baseline and end of treatment. In comparison to STEP, results indicated that GABI was linked to significant improvements in maternal supportive presence and dyadic reciprocity, and significant declines in maternal hostility and dyadic constriction (proxies for risk of child maltreatment). These medium-to large-sized effects remained significant even after controlling for mothers’ prior ACEs in analysis of covariance procedures. In addition, two small interaction effects of ACEs by treatment type were found, underlining the need for, and value of, treatments that are sensitive to parents’ traumatic histories.
To identify factors which may help or hinder decision-making ability in people with psychosis, we did a systematic review and meta-analysis of their performance on the Iowa and Cambridge Gambling Tasks. Analysis of 47 samples found they had moderately poorer performance than healthy individuals (N = 4264, g = −0.57, 95% confidence interval (CI) −0.66 to −0.48). Few studies (k = 8) used non-psychotic clinical comparator groups, although very low-quality evidence (k = 3) found people with bipolar disorder may perform better. Negative symptoms (k = 13, N = 648, r = −0.17, 95% CI −0.26 to −0.07) and lower IQ (k = 11, N = 525, r = 0.20, 95% CI 0.29–0.10), but not positive symptoms (k = 10, N = 512, r = −0.01, 95% CI −0.11 to 0.08), each had small-moderate associations with poorer decision-making. Lower quality evidence suggested general symptoms, working memory, social functioning, awareness of emotional responses to information, and attentional bias towards gain are associated with decision-making, but not education, executive functioning or overall symptoms. Meta-regression suggested an inverse association between decision-making and depression severity (k = 6, Q = 6.41, R2 100%, p = 0.01). Those taking first-generation (k = 6, N = 305, g = −0.17, 95% CI −0.40 to 0.06, p = 0.147) or low-dose antipsychotics (k = 5, N = 442, g = −0.19, 95% CI −0.44 to 0.06, p = 0.139) had unimpaired decision-making. Although meta-regression found no linear association between dose and performance, non-reporting of the dose was common and associated with larger impairments (k = 46, Q = 4.71, R2 14%, p = 0.03). Those supporting people with psychosis to make decisions, including treatment decisions, should consider the potential effect of these factors. Interventionist-causal trials are required to test whether reducing antipsychotic dose and treating anxiety and depression can improve decision-making in this group.
To outline the pathways a cohort of first attendees to our headache clinics had taken over the years in search of explanations and treatment for their headaches. To establish a greater awareness of the shortcomings and failures in their medical journey in the hope that better headache management will emerge in primary care.
At first attendance in primary care most headache sufferers will not receive a firm diagnosis. Treatments provided are often ineffective and so many patients embark on a somewhat random self-made journey searching for a remedy. If they reach a Headache Clinic the most common diagnoses are ‘chronic migraine’ and ‘medication overuse headache’. They are either no better or worse than when their headaches first started despite their efforts.
We undertook a prospective questionnaire-based study of over 200 patients on first attendance at each of our headache clinics, three based in District General Hospitals and one in a tertiary referral centre. We documented the patients’ headache characteristics, the ‘burden’ of their headaches, functional handicap and the financial costs incurred seeking help before referral. We also documented what our patients understood about their headache disorder and the treatments previously tried.
Most patients had not been given a formal diagnosis in primary care and many remained unconvinced of the benign nature of their headache problem and wanted further investigations. A few had sought help from headache charities. Many had unrealistic attitudes to their problem and medication overuse was rife. A few patients had been offered triptans in primary care. Key deficiencies in the primary care management of these patients included failure to provide a formal headache diagnosis, inadequate understanding of the nature and mechanism of headaches and failure to follow a resilient management strategy. We provide a more effective management pathway in primary care.
We present low-frequency spectral energy distributions of 60 known radio pulsars observed with the Murchison Widefield Array telescope. We searched the GaLactic and Extragalactic All-sky Murchison Widefield Array survey images for 200-MHz continuum radio emission at the position of all pulsars in the Australia Telescope National Facility (ATNF) pulsar catalogue. For the 60 confirmed detections, we have measured flux densities in 20 × 8 MHz bands between 72 and 231 MHz. We compare our results to existing measurements and show that the Murchison Widefield Array flux densities are in good agreement.
Little research has been conducted exploring the relationship between public-sector accountability and the law. This is a significant oversight given the potential for this relationship to cause unintended consequences around issues of liability, especially in the context of a growing litigation culture. The purpose of the current research is to explore this relationship, using qualitative studies of public-sector professionals in England. The findings of the study suggest that increasing emphasis on accountability has led to a growing magnification of legal risk in the public sector, with consequences for the ways public-sector professionals perceive their relationships with the public.
Colleagues hailed the Rutgers University historian Warren Susman as a pioneer in the field of cultural history and popular culture when he died in 1985 at the age of fifty-eight. Although well known, Susman had published just a handful of essays, a collection of which was published only the year before his death. Despite his reputation, this work was not widely reviewed and when it was, not uniformly positively. This essay explores the disjunction between his work and his reputation and, through an analysis of archival sources, including Susman's newly available personal papers, argues that Susman's importance lies less in his contributions to the field of cultural history than in his understanding of the relationship between historical work and the critical intellectual heritage of progressivism. The essay traces Susman's early professional career and historical work, including his unpublished doctoral study of expatriate intellectuals and his critical engagement with the legacy of the Progressive historians, and his mid-career efforts to join with other left scholars in establishing a new socialist party. Susman's career allows for the analysis and better understanding of the progressive tradition in historical scholarship, the changes in intellectual and cultural history in the 1960s, and the way historians have understood their role in social reform.
In the course of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, composers and music theorists moved away from the system of the eight ecclesiastical modes that had been elaborated by medieval theorists and was later applied to polyphonic music (including the varied system extended to twelve modes in the sixteenth century) towards modern bimodal tonality. Although several modal systems coexisted within this time period, a distinct variant of the eight modes, often known in modern scholarship as the church keys, developed as a practical solution to problems associated with the performance of psalms and other recited formulas (especially the Magnificat) in alternatim practice between the choir in plainchant and the organ. A scarcity of research on this topic within investigations of Spanish music prompts us to outline an introduction to a matter so crucial to music theory of the baroque period in Spain. Thus we present an overview of the treatment of the church keys or tones in Spanish treatises over a long period of two centuries, and focus briefly on particular contributions made by individual authors.
The collective response of electrons in an ultrathin foil target irradiated by an ultraintense (
) laser pulse is investigated experimentally and via 3D particle-in-cell simulations. It is shown that if the target is sufficiently thin that the laser induces significant radiation pressure, but not thin enough to become relativistically transparent to the laser light, the resulting relativistic electron beam is elliptical, with the major axis of the ellipse directed along the laser polarization axis. When the target thickness is decreased such that it becomes relativistically transparent early in the interaction with the laser pulse, diffraction of the transmitted laser light occurs through a so called ‘relativistic plasma aperture’, inducing structure in the spatial-intensity profile of the beam of energetic electrons. It is shown that the electron beam profile can be modified by variation of the target thickness and degree of ellipticity in the laser polarization.
Different dietary fat and energy subtypes have an impact on both the metabolic health and the intestinal microbiota population of the host. The present study assessed the impact of dietary fat quality, with a focus on dietary fatty acid compositions of varying saturation, on the metabolic health status and the intestinal microbiota composition of the host. C57BL/6J mice (n 9–10 mice per group) were fed high-fat (HF) diets containing either (1) palm oil, (2) olive oil, (3) safflower oil or (4) flaxseed/fish oil for 16 weeks and compared with mice fed low-fat (LF) diets supplemented with either high maize starch or high sucrose. Tissue fatty acid compositions were assessed by GLC, and the impact of the diet on host intestinal microbiota populations was investigated using high-throughput 16S rRNA sequencing. Compositional sequencing analysis revealed that dietary palm oil supplementation resulted in significantly lower populations of Bacteroidetes at the phylum level compared with dietary olive oil supplementation (P< 0·05). Dietary supplementation with olive oil was associated with an increase in the population of the family Bacteroidaceae compared with dietary supplementation of palm oil, flaxseed/fish oil and high sucrose (P< 0·05). Ingestion of the HF-flaxseed/fish oil diet for 16 weeks led to significantly increased tissue concentrations of EPA, docosapentaenoic acid and DHA compared with ingestion of all the other diets (P< 0·05); furthermore, the diet significantly increased the intestinal population of Bifidobacterium at the genus level compared with the LF-high-maize starch diet (P< 0·05). These data indicate that both the quantity and quality of fat have an impact on host physiology with further downstream alterations to the intestinal microbiota population, with a HF diet supplemented with flaxseed/fish oil positively shaping the host microbial ecosystem.
Many mental health service users delay or avoid disclosing their condition to employers because of experience, or anticipation, of discrimination. However, non-disclosure precludes the ability to request ‘reasonable adjustments’. There have been no intervention studies to support decisionmaking about disclosure to an employer.
To determine whether the decision aid has an effect that is sustained beyond its immediate impact; to determine whether a large-scale trial is feasible; and to optimise the designs of a larger trial and of the decision aid.
In this exploratory randomised controlled trial (RCT) in London, participants were randomly assigned to use of a decision aid plus usual care or usual care alone. Follow-up was at 3 months. Primary outcomes were: (a) stage of decision-making; (b) decisional conflict; and (c) employment-related outcomes (trial registration number: NCT01379014).
We recruited 80 participants and interventions were completed for 36 out of 40 in the intervention group; in total 71 participants were followed up. Intention-to-treat analysis showed that reduction in decisional conflict was significantly greater in the intervention group than among controls (mean improvement −22.7 (s.d. = 15.2) v. −11.2 (s.d. = 18.1), P = 0.005). More of the intervention group than controls were in full-time employment at follow-up (P = 0.03).
The observed reduction in decisional conflict regarding disclosure has a number of potential benefits which next need to be tested in a definitive trial.
Infestations of Italian ryegrass are problematic in both conventional and organic wheat production systems. The development of wheat cultivars with superior competitive ability against Italian ryegrass could play a role in maintaining acceptable yields and suppressing weed populations. Research was conducted in North Carolina to identify indirect methods of selection for Italian ryegrass suppressive ability (hereafter referred to as weed suppressive ability) of winter wheat cultivars that correlate well with Italian ryegrass-to-wheat biomass ratios. Two winter wheat cultivars (Dyna-Gro Baldwin and Dyna-Gro Dominion) and one experimental wheat line (NC05-19684) with differing morphological traits were overseeded with varying densities of Italian ryegrass. Wheat height measured throughout the growing season in weed-free plots was strongly associated with weed suppressive ability, but high wheat tillering capacity had no significant effect on weed suppressive ability in the lines tested in this study. Italian ryegrass seed head density during grain fill was strongly correlated (r = 0.94) with Italian ryegrass-to-wheat biomass ratio, the generally accepted measure of weed suppressive ability. Visual estimates of percent Italian ryegrass biomass relative to the plot with the highest level of Italian ryegrass infestation in each replicate were also strongly correlated with weed suppressive ability at all growth stages, especially during heading (r = 0.87) (Zadoks growth stage [GS] 55). Measurements from nonimaging spectrophotometers and overhead photographs taken from tillering (Zadoks 23 to 25) to early dough development (Zadoks 80) were unreliable estimates of end-of-season Italian ryegrass-to-wheat biomass ratios because they failed to account for wheat cultivar differences in biomass, color, and growth habit. Italian ryegrass seed head density and visual estimates of Italian ryegrass biomass during grain fill are appropriate indirect methods of selection for weed suppressive ability in breeding programs.
We sought to identify hospital characteristics associated with community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) carriage among inpatients.
Prospective cohort study.
Orange County, California.
Thirty hospitals in a single county.
We collected clinical MRSA isolates from inpatients in 30 of 31 hospitals in Orange County, California, from October 2008 through April 2010. We characterized isolates by spa typing to identify CA-MRSA strains. Using California's mandatory hospitalization data set, we identified hospital-level predictors of CA-MRSA isolation.
CA-MRSA strains represented 1,033 (46%) of 2,246 of MRSA isolates. By hospital, the median percentage of CA-MRSA isolates was 46% (range, 14%–81%). In multivariate models, CA-MRSA isolation was associated with smaller hospitals (odds ratio [OR], 0.97, or 3% decreased odds of CA-MRSA isolation per 1,000 annual admissions; P<.001), hospitals with more Medicaid-insured patients (OR, 1.2; P = .002), and hospitals with more patients with low comorbidity scores (OR, 1.3; P< .001). Results were similar when restricted to isolates from patients with hospital-onset infection.
Among 30 hospitals, CA-MRSA comprised nearly half of MRSA isolates. There was substantial variability in CA-MRSA penetration across hospitals, with more CA-MRSA in smaller hospitals with healthier but socially disadvantaged patient populations. Additional research is needed to determine whether infection control strategies can be successful in targeting CA-MRSA influx.