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To characterize associations between exposures within and outside the medical workplace with healthcare personnel (HCP) SARS-CoV-2 infection, including the effect of various forms of respiratory protection.
We collected data from international participants via an online survey.
In total, 1,130 HCP (244 cases with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, and 886 controls healthy throughout the pandemic) from 67 countries not meeting prespecified exclusion (ie, healthy but not working, missing workplace exposure data, COVID symptoms without lab confirmation) were included in this study.
Respondents were queried regarding workplace exposures, respiratory protection, and extra-occupational activities. Odds ratios for HCP infection were calculated using multivariable logistic regression and sensitivity analyses controlling for confounders and known biases.
HCP infection was associated with non–aerosol-generating contact with COVID-19 patients (adjusted OR, 1.4; 95% CI, 1.04–1.9; P = .03) and extra-occupational exposures including gatherings of ≥10 people, patronizing restaurants or bars, and public transportation (adjusted OR range, 3.1–16.2). Respirator use during aerosol-generating procedures (AGPs) was associated with lower odds of HCP infection (adjusted OR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2–0.8, P = .005), as was exposure to intensive care and dedicated COVID units, negative pressure rooms, and personal protective equipment (PPE) observers (adjusted OR range, 0.4–0.7).
COVID-19 transmission to HCP was associated with medical exposures currently considered lower-risk and multiple extra-occupational exposures, and exposures associated with proper use of appropriate PPE were protective. Closer scrutiny of infection control measures surrounding healthcare activities and medical settings considered lower risk, and continued awareness of the risks of public congregation, may reduce the incidence of HCP infection.
The updated common rule, for human subjects research, requires that consents “begin with a ‘concise and focused’ presentation of the key information that will most likely help someone make a decision about whether to participate in a study” (Menikoff, Kaneshiro, Pritchard. The New England Journal of Medicine. 2017; 376(7): 613–615.). We utilized a community-engaged technology development approach to inform feature options within the REDCap software platform centered around collection and storage of electronic consent (eConsent) to address issues of transparency, clinical trial efficiency, and regulatory compliance for informed consent (Harris, et al. Journal of Biomedical Informatics 2009; 42(2): 377–381.). eConsent may also improve recruitment and retention in clinical research studies by addressing: (1) barriers for accessing rural populations by facilitating remote consent and (2) cultural and literacy barriers by including optional explanatory material (e.g., defining terms by hovering over them with the cursor) or the choice of displaying different videos/images based on participant’s race, ethnicity, or educational level (Phillippi, et al. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing. 2018; 47(4): 529–534.).
We developed and pilot tested our eConsent framework to provide a personalized consent experience whereby users are guided through a consent document that utilizes avatars, contextual glossary information supplements, and videos, to facilitate communication of information.
The eConsent framework includes a portfolio of eight features, reviewed by community stakeholders, and tested at two academic medical centers.
Early adoption and utilization of this eConsent framework have demonstrated acceptability. Next steps will emphasize testing efficacy of features to improve participant engagement with the consent process.
The start of the “Third Wave of science studies” dates to a paper we wrote that was published in April 2002 by the journal Social Studies of Science (Collins & Evans, 2002). The paper challenged the idea, then dominant in science and technology studies (STS), that the problems associated with the role of science in policy making could be solved by reducing the influence of scientific experts and giving more rights in these matters to ordinary citizens. The Third Wave paper (hereafter 3Wave) set out a normative theory of expertise that remains consistent with the sociology of scientific knowledge but which can be used to argue against both an excessive reliance on science and an unrestrained suspicion of expertise. The trick is to turn attention from how truth is made to who is an expert and concentrate on making the “best” decisions rather than the “right” decisions. It can take half a century or more to know what was the right decision, but one can decide on the best decision by taking advice from the best experts and experts can be identified in the short term.
This article examines the history of immigrant business proprietors in England and Wales between 1851 and 1911. The newly available electronic version of the Census (I-CeM) allows all business proprietors in each Census year to be identified, and provides birthplace information that allows entrepreneurs from different countries to be compared to each other and to business proprietors born in the United Kingdom. Immigrant populations had higher rates of business proprietorship than the English and Welsh-born population. This article argues that this was caused by labour market structure and demography rather than cultural differences between English- and foreign-born business proprietors.
This article explores rabbinic traditions that see in the character of Joseph a figure of uncertain sexual orientation. I examine a series of rabbinic and biblical texts in which an unconventional gender dynamic may be present. While it is true that these biblical and rabbinic texts ran contrary to the normative ideational and behaviorally prescriptive traditions concerning sexuality presented by the main body of biblical and rabbinic texts, it is nonetheless true that the texts I examine invite readers to see an alternative dynamic through their stories. I will employ a variety of methodologies, including philological/critical scholarship, close literary reading, and queer theory, through which we might most profitably examine the interpretative traditions I consider.
The Canadian Stroke Best Practice Recommendations suggests that patients suspected of transient ischemic attack (TIA)/minor stroke receive urgent brain imaging, preferably computed tomography angiography (CTA). Yet, high requisition rates for non-cerebrovascular patients overburden limited radiological resources, putting patients at risk. We hypothesize that our clinical decision support tool (CDST) developed for risk stratification of TIA in the emergency department (ED), and which incorporates Canadian guidelines, could improve CTA utilization.
Retrospective study design with clinical information gathered from ED patient referrals to an outpatient TIA unit in Victoria, BC, from 2015-2016. Actual CTA orders by ED and TIA unit staff were compared to hypothetical CTA ordering if our CDST had been used in the ED upon patient arrival.
For 1,679 referrals, clinicians ordered 954 CTAs. Our CDST would have ordered a total of 977 CTAs for these patients. Overall, this would have increased the number of imaged-TIA patients by 89 (10.1%) while imaging 98 (16.1%) fewer non-cerebrovascular patients over the 2-year period. Our CDST would have ordered CTA for 18 (78.3%) of the recurrent stroke patients in the sample.
Our CDST could enhance CTA utilization in the ED for suspected TIA patients, and facilitate guideline-based stroke care. Use of our CDST would increase the number of TIA patients receiving CTA before ED discharge (rather than later at TIA units) and reduce the burden of imaging stroke mimics in radiological departments.
This article describes the creation of a new urban classification based on the 1891 census of England and Wales. It is the first attempt to use the recently available electronic version of the census (I-CeM) to classify all large towns in late Victorian England and Wales on their economic structure. Where previous scholars were restricted by the form of occupation data contained in the published census reports, I-CeM allows manipulation of the data in order to aggregate urban units and examine their occupational structures in great detail. The classification is then used to compare key socio-economic characteristics of different towns.
Tomography produces complex volumetric datasets containing the entire internal structure and density of an object in three dimensions (3D). Interpreting volumetric data requires 3D visualization but needs specialized software distinguishable from more familiar tools used in animation for 3D surface data. This tutorial reviews 3D visualization techniques for volumetric data using the open-source tomviz software package. A suite of tools including two-dimensional (2D) slices, surface contours, and full volume rendering provide quantitative and qualitative analysis of volumetric information. The principles outlined here are applicable to a wide range of 3D tomography techniques and can be applied to volumetric datasets beyond materials characterization.
Water cultures were significantly more sensitive than concurrently collected swab cultures (n=2,147 each) in detecting Legionella pneumophila within a Veterans Affairs healthcare system. Sensitivity for water versus swab cultures was 90% versus 30% overall, 83% versus 48% during a nosocomial Legionnaires’ disease outbreak, and 93% versus 22% post outbreak.
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.
Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation within CPR (ECPR) may improve survival for refractory out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). We developed a prehospital, emergency department (ED), and hospital-based clinical and educational protocol to improve the key variable of time-to-ECPR (TTE).
In a single urban health region we involved key prehospital, clinical, and administrative stakeholders over a 2-year period, to develop a regional ECPR program with destination to a single urban tertiary care hospital. We developed clear and reproducible inclusion criteria and processes, including measures of program efficiency. We conducted seminars and teaching modules to paramedics and hospital-based clinicians including monthly simulator sessions, and performed detailed reviews of each treated case in the form of report cards. In this before-and-after study we compared patients with ECPR attempted prior to, and after, protocol implementation. The primary outcome was TTE, defined as the time of initial professional CPR to establishment of extracorporeal circulation. We compared the median TTE for patients in the two groups using the Wilcoxon signed rank test.
Four patients were identified prior to the protocol and managed in an ad hoc basis; for nine patients the protocol was utilized. Overall favourable neurological outcomes among ECPR-treated patients were 27%. The median TTE was 136 minutes (IQR 98 - 196) in the pre-protocol group, and 60 minutes (IQR 49 - 81) minutes in the protocol group (p=0.0165).
An organized clinical and educational protocol to initiate ECPR for patients with OHCA is feasible and significantly reduces the key benchmark of time-to-ECPR flows.
Ramalina europaea Gasparyan, Sipman & Lücking and R. labiosorediata Gasparyan, Sipman & Lücking, two species of the R. pollinaria group, are described here as new to science. Ramalina europaea, widely distributed in Europe, can be distinguished by small, punctiform, often terminal soralia starting out on small, spine-like branchlets, whereas R. labiosorediata from North America differs from R. pollinaria s. str. and R. europaea in the almost exclusively terminal soralia formed on the tips of normal lobes, originating from the underside and becoming irregularly labriform. Morphological characters, chemistry, ecology and geographical distribution are discussed and a key to the species of the Ramalina pollinaria group is provided. The topology of a maximum likelihood tree based on ITS shows the presence of three well-supported clades, corresponding to the morphological differences of the three species. The status of several historical names variously placed in synonymy with or described as infraspecific entities of R. pollinaria is reassessed and a new neotype and an epitype are designated for Lichen pollinarius, a neotype for L. squarrosus, making it a synonym of R. farinacea, and lectotypes for R. pollinaria var. elatior, making it a synonym of R. pollinaria s. str., and for var. humilis, a taxon of yet unknown affinity.
The large volume production of flexible electronics by solution based roll-to-roll (R2R) manufacturing technologies is a promising upscaling strategy for the organic electronics industry. Typical optoelectronic devices like organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) consist of a complex stack of functional layers. Solution deposition of these structures eliminates the need for expensive vacuum processing. This contribution presents approaches for solution based R2R production methods of functional OLED layers on flexible polymer substrates. The development of a R2R line with two slot-die coating stations is discussed which can deposit two uniform layers consecutively in a single run (“tandem coating”) at web speeds up to 30 m/min. Furthermore, it offers the unique feature that there is no contact between the rollers and the top side of the substrate where the functional coating is deposited. Thereby, an important source of particle contamination and other damage to the device is eliminated. In addition to continuous deposition, stripe and intermittent coating techniques have been developed, allowing the production of patterned layers. Finally, examples will be shown of OLEDs where two functional materials are deposited by R2R processing from solution.