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Immunization data are vital to support responses to vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks. The Oregon Immunization Program developed a unique prototype instrument—the Rapid Response Tool (RRT)—that provides population data to local responders within 2 hours of a request. Data outputs include vaccination coverage by age group and zip code; percentages of students with nonmedical exemptions to vaccination requirements, by school; and current, comprehensive lists of local vaccination providers.
The RRT was demonstrated to staff at 7 Oregon counties and feedback was solicited via comments and a structured survey.
The RRT received strong support. Attendees identified several uses for RRT data, including outbreak response and ongoing intervention efforts, and they pointed to areas for further development.
The success of the RRT demonstrations illustrates that a well-populated immunization information system can contribute to preparedness work well beyond current standards. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2019;13:682–685)
UK Biobank is a well-characterised cohort of over 500 000 participants that offers unique opportunities to investigate multiple diseases and risk factors.
An online mental health questionnaire completed by UK Biobank participants was expected to expand the potential for research into mental disorders.
An expert working group designed the questionnaire, using established measures where possible, and consulting with a patient group regarding acceptability. Case definitions were defined using operational criteria for lifetime depression, mania, anxiety disorder, psychotic-like experiences and self-harm, as well as current post-traumatic stress and alcohol use disorders.
157 366 completed online questionnaires were available by August 2017. Comparison of self-reported diagnosed mental disorder with a contemporary study shows a similar prevalence, despite respondents being of higher average socioeconomic status than the general population across a range of indicators. Thirty-five per cent (55 750) of participants had at least one defined syndrome, of which lifetime depression was the most common at 24% (37 434). There was extensive comorbidity among the syndromes. Mental disorders were associated with high neuroticism score, adverse life events and long-term illness; addiction and bipolar affective disorder in particular were associated with measures of deprivation.
The questionnaire represents a very large mental health survey in itself, and the results presented here show high face validity, although caution is needed owing to selection bias. Built into UK Biobank, these data intersect with other health data to offer unparalleled potential for crosscutting biomedical research involving mental health.
Declaration of interest
G.B. received grants from the National Institute for Health Research during the study; and support from Illumina Ltd. and the European Commission outside the submitted work. B.C. received grants from the Scottish Executive Chief Scientist Office and from The Dr Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation during the study. C.S. received grants from the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust during the study, and is the Chief Scientist for UK Biobank. M.H. received grants from the Innovative Medicines Initiative via the RADAR-CNS programme and personal fees as an expert witness outside the submitted work.
Despite evidence linking regular nut consumption with reduced chronic disease risk, population-level intakes remain low. Research suggests nut-promoting advice from doctors facilitates regular nut consumption. However, there is no information on current nut recommendation practices of health professionals. The aim of the present study was to examine the advice provided by health professionals regarding nut consumption.
In this cross-sectional study, participants were invited to complete a survey including questions about their nut recommendation practices.
New Zealand (NZ).
The NZ Electoral Roll was used to identify dietitians, general practitioners and practice nurses.
In total 318 dietitians, 292 general practitioners and 149 practice nurses responded. Dietitians were more likely (82·7 %) to recommend patients increase consumption of nuts than general practitioners (55·5 %) and practice nurses (63·1 %; both P<0·001). The most popular nuts recommended were almonds, Brazil nuts and walnuts, with most health professionals recommending raw nuts. The most common recommendation for frequency of consumption by dietitians and practice nurses was to eat nuts every day, while general practitioners most frequently recommended 2–4 times weekly, although not statistically significantly different between professions. Dietitians recommended a significantly greater amount of nuts (median 30 g/d) than both general practitioners and practice nurses (20 g/d; both P<0·001).
Dietitians were most likely to recommend consumption of nuts in accordance with current guidelines, but there are opportunities to improve the adoption of nut consumption recommendations for all professions. This may be a viable strategy for increasing population-level nut intakes to reduce chronic disease.
Despite considerable evidence supporting the health benefits of regular nut consumption, nut intakes remain lower than recommended among many populations. Understanding how the general population perceives nuts could inform strategies to promote regular nut consumption and increase intakes among the general public.
Cross-sectional study. Participants were invited to complete a questionnaire which included information on nut consumption and knowledge and perceptions of nuts.
The study was set in New Zealand (NZ).
Participants (n 1600), aged 18 years or over, were randomly selected from the NZ electoral roll.
A total of 710 participants completed the questionnaire (response rate 44 %). More than half of the respondents believed that nuts are healthy, filling, high in protein and high in fat. The most common reason cited by consumers for eating nuts was taste (86 % for nuts, 85 % for nut butters), while dental issues was the most frequent reason for avoidance. About 40 % of respondents were not aware of the effects of nut consumption on lowering blood cholesterol and CVD risk.
Despite overall basic knowledge of the nutritional value of nuts, a substantial proportion of the general population was unaware of the cardioprotective effects of nuts. The present study identified common motivations for eating and avoiding nuts, as well as perceptions of nuts which could affect intake. These should guide the content and direction of public health messages to increase regular nut consumption. The public’s knowledge gaps should also be addressed.
Introduction: The acute onset of flashes and floaters is a common presentation to the emergency department (ED). The most emergent etiology is retinal detachment (RD), which requires prompt ophthalmologic assessment. Previous studies of point of care ultrasound (POCUS) have reported high sensitivity and specificity for RD, but are limited by small sample size, use of highly trained and experienced sonographers, and referral bias. Our primary objective was to assess the test characteristics of POCUS performed by a large heterogeneous group of emergency physicians (EPs) for the diagnosis of RD. Methods: This was a prospective diagnostic test assessment of POCUS performed by EPs with varying ultrasound experience on a convenience sample of ED patients presenting with the complaint of flashes or floaters in one or both eyes. Participating EPs completed a one hour didactic lecture and were expected to demonstrate appropriate performance of one practice scan before enrolling patients. After standard ED assessment, patients underwent an ocular POCUS scan targeted to detect RD. EPs recorded the presence or absence of RD on the data collection instrument based on their POCUS scan. After completing their ED visit, all patients were assessed by a retina specialist who was blinded to the results of the POCUS scan. We calculated sensitivity and specificity with associated exact binomial confidence intervals (CI) using the retina specialist’s determination of the final diagnosis as the criterion standard. Results: A total of 30 EPs, consisting of 21 staff physicians and 9 residents, participated in this study. These EPs performed a total of 128 POCUS scans. Of these scans, 13 were excluded. Of the remaining 115 enrolled patients, median age was 60 years, and 64% were female. The retina specialist diagnosed RD in 16 (14%) cases. The sensitivity and specificity of POCUS for detecting RD was 75% (95% CI 48% to 93%) and 94% (95% CI 87% to 98%), respectively. The positive likelihood ratio was 12.4 (95% CI 5.4 to 28.3), and negative likelihood ratio was 0.27 (95% CI 0.11 to 0.62). Conclusion: In a heterogeneous group of EPs with varying ultrasound experience, POCUS demonstrates high specificity but only intermediate sensitivity for the detection of RD. A negative POCUS scan is not sufficiently sensitive to rule out RD in a patient with new onset flashes or floaters.
The subsurface exploration of other planetary bodies can be used to unravel their geological history and assess their habitability. On Mars in particular, present-day habitable conditions may be restricted to the subsurface. Using a deep subsurface mine, we carried out a program of extraterrestrial analog research – MINe Analog Research (MINAR). MINAR aims to carry out the scientific study of the deep subsurface and test instrumentation designed for planetary surface exploration by investigating deep subsurface geology, whilst establishing the potential this technology has to be transferred into the mining industry. An integrated multi-instrument suite was used to investigate samples of representative evaporite minerals from a subsurface Permian evaporite sequence, in particular to assess mineral and elemental variations which provide small-scale regions of enhanced habitability. The instruments used were the Panoramic Camera emulator, Close-Up Imager, Raman spectrometer, Small Planetary Linear Impulse Tool, Ultrasonic drill and handheld X-ray diffraction (XRD). We present science results from the analog research and show that these instruments can be used to investigate in situ the geological context and mineralogical variations of a deep subsurface environment, and thus habitability, from millimetre to metre scales. We also show that these instruments are complementary. For example, the identification of primary evaporite minerals such as NaCl and KCl, which are difficult to detect by portable Raman spectrometers, can be accomplished with XRD. By contrast, Raman is highly effective at locating and detecting mineral inclusions in primary evaporite minerals. MINAR demonstrates the effective use of a deep subsurface environment for planetary instrument development, understanding the habitability of extreme deep subsurface environments on Earth and other planetary bodies, and advancing the use of space technology in economic mining.
In recent years the concept of mindfulness has become increasingly popular, and with good reason. A growing body of research indicates that mindfulness provides a number of physical, psychological, and even performance benefits. As a result, some organizations have started offering mindfulness programs to their employees. But despite growing interest, mindfulness has received little attention from the industrial–organizational community. In this article, we provide an overview of what mindfulness is, where the concept came from, how it has been utilized and studied to date, and what its application in the work setting is. We also propose new directions for researchers and practitioners.