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Exposure therapy is consistently indicated as the first-line treatment for anxiety-related disorders. Unfortunately, therapists often deliver exposure therapy in an overly cautious, less effective manner, characterized by using their own ‘therapist safety behaviours’. Cognitive behavioural models postulate that beliefs about therapist safety behaviours are related to their use; however, little is known about the beliefs therapists hold regarding therapist safety behaviour use. The present study aimed to identify the beliefs exposure therapists have regarding the necessity of therapist safety behaviours and to examine the relationship between this construct and therapist safety behaviour use. Australian psychologists (n = 98) completed an online survey that included existing measures of therapist safety behaviour use, therapist negative beliefs about exposure therapy, likelihood to exclude anxious clients from exposure therapy, and use of intensifying exposure techniques. Participants also completed the Exposure Implementation Beliefs Scale (EIBS), a measure created for the present study which assesses beliefs regarding the necessity of therapist safety behaviours. Beliefs about the necessity of therapist safety behaviours – particularly in protecting the client – significantly predicted therapist safety behaviour use. Findings suggest that exposure therapy training media should aim to decrease therapist safety behaviour use by addressing beliefs about the necessity of therapist safety behaviours, especially in protecting the client.
Key learning aims
(1) To understand what therapist safety behaviours are in the context of exposure therapy.
(2) To identify common beliefs about therapist safety behaviours.
(3) To understand how beliefs about therapist safety behaviours relate to therapist safety behaviour use.
(4) To consider how exposure therapy delivery may be improved by modifying beliefs about therapist safety behaviours.
(5) To explore how beliefs about therapist safety behaviours may be modified to reduce therapist safety behaviour use.
Hard-core smokers have been identified as a potential public health challenge. The trans-theoretical model lacks the specificity to identify hard-core smokers. The precaution adoption process model (PAPM) is a stage-based behaviour change model which includes ‘no intent to quit’ as a distinct stage and so may be useful in identifying hard-core smokers.
The aim of this study was to apply the PAPM to a community based sample of smokers to determine whether it provides a useful approach to identifying hard-core smokers.
We surveyed smokers in Australia who were recruited through social media and an online data collection agency.
The sample included 336 current smokers, 11.9% were in Stage 4 of the PAPM – i.e. had decided not to quit. Stage 4 smokers are more resistant to quitting and marked by their similarities to hard-core smokers. This is further amplified when addressing Stage 4 smokers with no previous quit attempt.
Stage 4 smokers with no previous quit attempts are aligned with a hard-core smoker profile with higher levels of nicotine dependence, greater cigarette consumption and low socio-economic status. Further research is required to determine if PAPM is a valid predictive model for identifying hard-core smokers in clinical practice.
Background: Safety behaviours are ubiquitous across anxiety disorders and are associated with the aetiology, maintenance and exacerbation of anxiety. Cognitive behavioural models posit that beliefs about safety behaviours directly influence their use. Therefore, beliefs about safety behaviours may be an important component in decreasing safety behaviour use. Unfortunately, little empirical research has evaluated this theorized relationship.
Aims: The present study aimed to examine the predictive relationship between beliefs about safety behaviours and safety behaviour use while controlling for anxiety severity.
Method: Adults with clinically elevated levels of social anxiety (n = 145) and anxiety sensitivity (n = 109) completed an online survey that included established measures of safety behaviour use, quality of life, and anxiety severity. Participants also completed the Safety Behaviour Scale (SBS), a measure created for the current study which includes a transdiagnostic checklist of safety behaviours, as well as questions related to safety behaviour use and beliefs about safety behaviours.
Results: Within both the social anxiety and anxiety sensitivity groups, positive beliefs about safety behaviours predicted greater safety behaviour use, even when controlling for anxiety severity. Certain beliefs were particularly relevant in predicting safety behaviour use within each of the clinical analogue groups.
Conclusions: Findings suggest that efforts to decrease safety behaviour use during anxiety treatment may benefit from identifying and modifying positive beliefs about safety behaviours.
The mental and physical health of individuals with a psychotic illness are typically poor. Access to psychosocial interventions is important but currently limited. Telephone-delivered interventions may assist. In the current systematic review, we aim to summarise and critically analyse evidence for telephone-delivered psychosocial interventions targeting key health priorities in adults with a psychotic disorder, including (i) relapse, (ii) adherence to psychiatric medication and/or (iii) modifiable cardiovascular disease risk behaviours.
Ten peer-reviewed and four grey literature databases were searched for English-language studies examining psychosocial telephone-delivered interventions targeting relapse, medication adherence and/or health behaviours in adults with a psychotic disorder. Study heterogeneity precluded meta-analyses.
Twenty trials [13 randomised controlled trials (RCTs)] were included, involving 2473 participants (relapse prevention = 867; medication adherence = 1273; and health behaviour = 333). Five of eight RCTs targeting relapse prevention and one of three targeting medication adherence reported at least 50% of outcomes in favour of the telephone-delivered intervention. The two health-behaviour RCTs found comparable levels of improvement across treatment conditions.
Although most interventions combined telephone and face-to-face delivery, there was evidence to support the benefit of entirely telephone-delivered interventions. Telephone interventions represent a potentially feasible and effective option for improving key health priorities among people with psychotic disorders. Further methodologically rigorous evaluations are warranted.
Code phase Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) positioning performance is often described by the Geometric or Position Dilution of Precision (GDOP or PDOP), functions of the number of satellites employed in the solution and their geometry. This paper develops lower bounds to both metrics solely as functions of the number of satellites, effectively removing the added complexity caused by their locations in the sky, to allow users to assess how well their receivers are performing with respect to the best possible performance. Such bounds will be useful as receivers sub-select from the plethora of satellites available with multiple GNSS constellations. The bounds are initially developed for one constellation assuming that the satellites are at or above the horizon. Satellite constellations that essentially achieve the bounds are discussed, again with value toward the problem of satellite selection. The bounds are then extended to a non-zero mask angle and to multiple constellations.
Objectives: To summarize the clinical characteristics and outcomes of pediatric sports-related concussion (SRC) patients who were evaluated and managed at a multidisciplinary pediatric concussion program and examine the healthcare resources and personnel required to meet the needs of this patient population. Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of all pediatric SRC patients referred to the Pan Am Concussion Program from September 1st, 2013 to May 25th, 2015. Initial assessments and diagnoses were carried out by a single neurosurgeon. Return-to-Play decision-making was carried out by the multidisciplinary team. Results: 604 patients, including 423 pediatric SRC patients were evaluated at the Pan Am Concussion Program during the study period. The mean age of study patients was 14.30 years (SD: 2.32, range 7-19 years); 252 (59.57%) were males. Hockey (182; 43.03%) and soccer (60; 14.18%) were the most commonly played sports at the time of injury. Overall, 294 (69.50%) of SRC patients met the clinical criteria for concussion recovery, while 75 (17.73%) were lost to follow-up, and 53 (12.53%) remained in active treatment at the end of the study period. The median duration of symptoms among the 261 acute SRC patients with complete follow-up was 23 days (IQR: 15, 36). Overall, 25.30% of pediatric SRC patients underwent at least one diagnostic imaging test and 32.62% received referral to another member of our multidisciplinary clinical team. Conclusion: Comprehensive care of pediatric SRC patients requires access to appropriate diagnostic resources and the multidisciplinary collaboration of experts with national and provincially-recognized training in TBI.
Antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) are variably implemented.
To characterize variations of antimicrobial stewardship structure and practices across all inpatient Veterans Affairs facilities in 2012 and correlate key characteristics with antimicrobial usage.
A web-based survey regarding stewardship activities was administered to each facility’s designated contact. Bivariate associations between facility characteristics and inpatient antimicrobial use during 2012 were determined.
Total of 130 Veterans Affairs facilities with inpatient services.
Of 130 responding facilities, 29 (22%) had a formal policy establishing an ASP, and 12 (9%) had an approved ASP business plan. Antimicrobial stewardship teams were present in 49 facilities (38%); 34 teams included a clinical pharmacist with formal infectious diseases (ID) training. Stewardship activities varied across facilities, including development of yearly antibiograms (122 [94%]), formulary restrictions (120 [92%]), stop orders for antimicrobial duration (98 [75%]), and written clinical pathways for specific conditions (96 [74%]). Decreased antimicrobial usage was associated with having at least 1 full-time ID physician (P=.03), an ID fellowship program (P=.003), and a clinical pharmacist with formal ID training (P=.006) as well as frequency of systematic patient-level reviews of antimicrobial use (P=.01) and having a policy to address antimicrobial use in the context of Clostridium difficile infection (P=.01). Stop orders for antimicrobial duration were associated with increased use (P=.03).
ASP-related activities varied considerably. Decreased antibiotic use appeared related to ID presence and certain select practices. Further statistical assessments may help optimize antimicrobial practices.
Surgical site infections (SSIs) are responsible for significant morbidity and mortality. Preadmission skin antisepsis, while controversial, has gained acceptance as a strategy for reducing the risk of SSI. In this study, we analyze the benefit of an electronic alert system for enhancing compliance to preadmission application of 2% chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG).
DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS
Following informed consent, 100 healthy volunteers in an academic, tertiary care medical center were randomized to 5 chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) skin application groups: 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 consecutive applications. Participants were further randomized into 2 subgroups: with or without electronic alert. Skin surface concentrations of CHG (μg/mL) were analyzed using a colorimetric assay at 5 separate anatomic sites.
Preadmission application of chlorhexidine gluconate, 2%
Mean composite skin surface CHG concentrations in volunteer participants receiving EA following 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 applications were 1,040.5, 1,334.4, 1,278.2, 1,643.9, and 1,803.1 µg/mL, respectively, while composite skin surface concentrations in the no-EA group were 913.8, 1,240.0, 1,249.8, 1,194.4, and 1,364.2 µg/mL, respectively (ANOVA, P<.001). Composite ratios (CHG concentration/minimum inhibitory concentration required to inhibit the growth of 90% of organisms [MIC90]) for 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 applications using the 2% CHG cloth were 208.1, 266.8, 255.6, 328.8, and 360.6, respectively, representing CHG skin concentrations effective against staphylococcal surgical pathogens. The use of an electronic alert system resulted in significant increase in skin concentrations of CHG in the 4- and 5-application groups (P<.04 and P<.007, respectively).
The findings of this study suggest an evidence-based standardized process that includes use of an Internet-based electronic alert system to improve patient compliance while maximizing skin surface concentrations effective against MRSA and other staphylococcal surgical pathogens.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2016;37(3):254–259
The central rock-rat Zyzomys pedunculatus is categorized as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. Over the last 50 years the species had only been recorded from 14 sites within a 600 km2 area of the West MacDonnell National Park and immediate surroundings in the Northern Territory, Australia. The central rock-rat disappeared from monitoring sites in 2002, coincident with the onset of drought conditions and extensive wildfires. With concern growing for the survival of the species, we sought to locate an extant population. During 2009–2012 we surveyed sites throughout the western sector of the West MacDonnell National Park, including sites where rock-rats had previously been recorded. From a total of 55 sites and 5,000 trap nights we located eight central rock-rats from only five sites (overall detection rate = 0.16 rock-rats per 100 trap nights). All sites were on two mountain-top locations, both of which are over 1,250 m altitude. Evidence of reproductive activity was observed at both locations but the subpopulations were relatively localized and no individuals were captured at any of the sites from which the species was known previous to these surveys. Although the rugged mountains may provide the central rock-rat with some refuge from predation and wildfires, more research is needed to understand better the factors suppressing and constraining the species at the population and landscape scales. Immediate management priorities are prescribed burning to limit the extent and severity of wildfires and trialling a baiting programme with 1080 to target feral cats in the mountains.