To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Critical shortages of personal protective equipment especially N95 respirators during the COVID- 19 pandemic continues to be a source of concern. Novel methods of N95 filtering facepiece respirator decontamination that can be scaled-up for in-hospital use can help address this concern and keep HCWs safe.
A multidisciplinary pragmatic study was conducted to evaluate the use of an ultrasonic room high-level disinfection system (HLDS) that generates aerosolized peracetic acid (PAA) and hydrogen peroxide for decontamination of large numbers of N95 respirators. A cycle duration that consistently achieved disinfection of N95 respirators (defined as ≥6 log10 reductions in bacteriophage MS2 and Geobacillus stearothermophilus spores inoculated onto respirators) was identified. The treated masks were assessed for changes to their hydrophobicity, material structure, strap elasticity, and filtration efficiency (FE). PAA and hydrogen peroxide off-gassing from treated masks were also assessed.
The PAA room HLDS was effective for disinfection of bacteriophage MS2 and G. stearothermophilus spores on respirators in a 2447 cubic feet room with aerosol deploy and dwell times of 16 and 32 minutes, respectively. The total cycle time was 1 hour and 16 minutes. After 5 treatment cycles, no adverse effects were detected on filtration efficiency, structural integrity, or strap elasticity. There was no detectable off-gassing of PAA and hydrogen peroxide from the treated masks at 20 and 60 minutes after the disinfection cycle respectively.
The PAA room disinfection system provides a rapidly scalable solution for in-hospital decontamination of large numbers of N95 respirators during the COVID- 19 pandemic.
Reduction in the use of fluoroquinolone antibiotics has been associated with reductions in Clostridioides difficile infections (CDIs) due to fluoroquinolone-resistant strains.
To determine whether facility-level fluoroquinolone use predicts healthcare facility-associated (HCFA) CDI due to fluoroquinolone-resistant 027 strains.
Using a nationwide cohort of hospitalized patients in the Veterans’ Affairs Healthcare System, we identified hospitals that categorized >80% of CDI cases as positive or negative for the 027 strain for at least one-quarter of fiscal years 2011–2018. Within these facilities, we used visual summaries and multilevel logistic regression models to assess the association between facility-level fluoroquinolone use and rates of HCFA-CDI due to 027 strains, controlling for time and facility complexity level, and adjusting for correlated outcomes within facilities.
Between 2011 and 2018, 55 hospitals met criteria for reporting 027 results, including a total of 5,091 HCFA-CDI cases, with 1,017 infections (20.0%) due to 027 strains. Across these facilities, the use of fluoroquinolones decreased by 52% from 2011 to 2018, with concurrent reductions in the overall HCFA-CDI rate and the proportion of HCFA-CDI cases due to the 027 strain of 13% and 55%, respectively. A multilevel logistic model demonstrated a significant effect of facility-level fluoroquinolone use on the proportion of infections in the facility due to the 027 strain, most noticeably in low-complexity facilities.
Our findings provide support for interventions to reduce use of fluroquinolones as a control measure for CDI, particularly in settings where fluoroquinolone use is high and fluoroquinolone-resistant strains are common causes of infection.
On coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) wards, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) nucleic acid was frequently detected on high-touch surfaces, floors, and socks inside patient rooms. Contamination of floors and shoes was common outside patient rooms on the COVID-19 wards but decreased after improvements in floor cleaning and disinfection were implemented.
Experimental data for turbulent solid–liquid flow in a vertical pipe were collected for glass beads with diameters from 0.5 mm to 5 mm, at concentrations up to 2 % v/v, and Reynolds numbers from 200 000 to 350 000. In addition, data for crushed glass, steel shot and two sizes of stainless-steel cylinders were also collected. The experiments span from the intermediate to the inertia-dominated regimes, and the results include direct measurements for the pressure drops, the solids concentration and the three velocity components for each of the phases using laser Doppler velocimetry and phase Doppler anemometry. In addition, the results include the Reynolds stresses, the granular temperature, the kinetic energy and calculations for the turbulence modulation. The results show augmentation of turbulence for all the conditions studied. The velocity fluctuations for the solid and the liquid are reduced with increasing Reynolds numbers at all conditions. The Reynolds number dictates the behaviour of the relative velocity with concentration: for the Reynolds number of 350 000, the relative velocity increases with increasing concentrations, which can be explained by a decrease in the solid shear and an increase in the solid-phase pressure with rising concentration. In contrast, for the Reynolds number of 200 000, the relative velocity decreases with increasing concentrations, which can be attributed to an increase in drag force at higher concentration. The unique dataset presented begins to close the gap in knowledge for two-phase flow experimentation at concentrations above 0.7 % v/v and Reynolds numbers above 30 000.
Around 60 000 people in England live in mental health supported accommodation. There are three main types: residential care, supported housing and floating outreach. Supported housing and floating outreach aim to support service users in moving on to more independent accommodation within 2 years, but there has been little research investigating their effectiveness.
A 30-month prospective cohort study investigating outcomes for users of mental health supported accommodation.
We used random sampling, accounting for relevant geographical variation factors, to recruit 87 services (22 residential care, 35 supported housing and 30 floating outreach) and 619 service users (residential care 159, supported housing 251, floating outreach 209) across England. We contacted services every 3 months to investigate the proportion of service users who successfully moved on to more independent accommodation. Multilevel modelling was used to estimate how much of the outcome and cost variations were due to service type and quality, after accounting for service-user characteristics.
Overall 243/586 participants successfully moved on (residential care 15/146, supported housing 96/244, floating outreach 132/196). This was most likely for floating outreach service users (versus residential care: odds ratio 7.96, 95% CI 2.92–21.69, P < 0.001; versus supported housing: odds ratio 2.74, 95% CI 1.01–7.41, P < 0.001) and was associated with reduced costs of care and two aspects of service quality: promotion of human rights and recovery-based practice.
Most people do not move on from supported accommodation within the expected time frame. Greater focus on human rights and recovery-based practice may increase service effectiveness.
Problematic alcohol use is associated with detrimental cognitive, physiological and social consequences. In the emergency department (ED), Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is the recommended approach to identify and treat adolescent alcohol-related concerns, but is underused by physicians.
This study examined pediatric emergency physicians’ perceptions of adolescent drinking and treatment, and their current self-reported SBIRT practices.
Physicians in the Pediatric Emergency Research Canada database (n=245) received a 35-item questionnaire that was administered through a web-based platform and paper-based mail-outs. Recruitment followed a modified Dillman four-contact approach.
From October 2016 to January 2017, 166 pediatric emergency physicians (46.4% males; mean age=43.6 years) completed the questionnaire. The response rate was 67.8%. Physicians recognized the need (65%) and responsibility (86%) to address adolescent alcohol problems. However, confidence in knowledge and abilities for SBIRT execution was low. Twenty-five percent of physicians reported never having practiced all, or part of, SBIRT while 1.3% reported consistent SBIRT delivery for adolescents with alcohol-related visits. More alcohol education and counselling experience was associated with higher SBIRT use; however, physicians generally reported to have received minimal alcohol training. SBIRT practices were also associated with physician perceptions of problematic alcohol use and its treatability.
Pediatric emergency physicians acknowledge the need to address problematic adolescent alcohol use, but routine SBIRT use is lacking. Strategies to educate physicians about SBIRT and enhance perceived self-competency may improve SBIRT use. Effectiveness trials to establish SBIRT impact on patient outcomes are also needed.
Contaminated hands of healthcare workers (HCWs) are an important source of transmission of healthcare-associated infections. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers, while effective, do not provide sustained antimicrobial activity. The objective of this study was to compare the immediate and persistent activity of 2 hand hygiene products (ethanol [61% w/v] plus chlorhexidine gluconate [CHG; 1.0% solution] and ethanol only [70% v/v]) when used in an intensive care unit (ICU).
Prospective, randomized, double-blinded, crossover study
Three ICUs at a large teaching hospital
In total, 51 HCWs involved in direct patient care were enrolled in and completed the study.
All HCWs were randomized 1:1 to either product. Hand prints were obtained immediately after the product was applied and again after spending 4–7 minutes in the ICU common areas prior to entering a patient room or leaving the area. The numbers of aerobic colony-forming units (CFU) were compared for the 2 groups after log transformation. Each participant tested the alternative product after a 3-day washout period.
On bare hands, use of ethanol plus CHG was associated with significantly lower recovery of aerobic CFU, both immediately after use (0.27 ± 0.05 and 0.88 ± 0.08 log10 CFU; P = .035) and after spending time in ICU common areas (1.81 ± 0.07 and 2.17 ± 0.05 log10 CFU; P<.0001). Both the antiseptics were well tolerated by HCWs.
In comparison to the ethanol-only product, the ethanol plus CHG sanitizer was associated with significantly lower aerobic bacterial counts on hands of HCWs, both immediately after use and after spending time in ICU common areas.
Recent studies point to overlap between neuropsychiatric disorders in symptomatology and genetic aetiology.
To systematically investigate genomics overlap between childhood and adult attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and major depressive disorder (MDD).
Analysis of whole-genome blood gene expression and genetic risk scores of 318 individuals. Participants included individuals affected with adult ADHD (n = 93), childhood ADHD (n = 17), MDD (n = 63), ASD (n = 51), childhood dual diagnosis of ADHD–ASD (n = 16) and healthy controls (n = 78).
Weighted gene co-expression analysis results reveal disorder-specific signatures for childhood ADHD and MDD, and also highlight two immune-related gene co-expression modules correlating inversely with MDD and adult ADHD disease status. We find no significant relationship between polygenic risk scores and gene expression signatures.
Our results reveal disorder overlap and specificity at the genetic and gene expression level. They suggest new pathways contributing to distinct pathophysiology in psychiatric disorders and shed light on potential shared genomic risk factors.
Implementation of an antimicrobial stewardship program bundle for urinary tract infections among 92 patients led to a higher rate of discontinuation of therapy for asymptomatic bacteriuria (52.4% vs 12.5%; P =.004), more appropriate durations of therapy (88.7% vs 63.6%; P =.001), and significantly higher overall bundle compliance (75% vs 38.2%; P < .001).
Gingivostomatitis is a common, painful pediatric presentation, and yet, few studies are available to guide management. We aimed to describe pediatric emergency physicians’ current practice patterns, with respect to analgesic use in children with acute gingivostomatitis, in order to inform future studies.
A national survey was conducted at all 15 national academic pediatric centres.
Electronic surveys were distributed to pediatric emergency physicians using a modified Dillman protocol; non-respondents received paper surveys via post. Data were collected regarding demographic characteristics, clinical behaviour, factors that may influence practice, and future directions.
Response rate was 74% (150/202). Most physicians (72%) preferred the combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen to either agent alone (ibuprofen 19%, acetaminophen 7%). The preferred second-line analgesics were oral morphine (48%, 72/150) and compounded topical formulas (42%, 64/150). The most commonly cited compounded agent was Benadryl plus Maalox (23%, 35/150). Clinical experience with a medication had the greatest influence on practice pattern, with 52% (78/149) strongly agreeing. The most commonly cited barrier to adequate analgesia was difficulty in the administration of topical or oral medication to children.
As with many other painful conditions, the combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen was preferred, followed by either agent alone. Oral morphine and topical compounded agents were also frequently prescribed. Regardless of patient age, physicians preferred oral morphine as a second-line agent to treat pain from severe gingivostomatitis. Future research will focus on determining which analgesic and route (oral or topical) is the most effective and best-tolerated choice.
We explored caregiver perspectives on their children’s pain management in both a pediatric (PED) and general emergency department (GED). Study objectives were to: (1) measure caregiver estimates of children’s pain scores and treatment; (2) determine caregiver level of satisfaction; and (3) determine factors associated with caregiver satisfaction.
This prospective survey examined a convenience sample of 97 caregivers (n=51 PED, n=46 GED) with children aged <17 years. A paper-based survey was distributed by research assistants, from 2009–2011.
Most caregivers were female (n=77, 79%) and were the child’s mother (n=69, 71%). Children were treated primarily for musculoskeletal pain (n=41, 42%), headache (n=16, 16%) and abdominal pain (n=7, 7%). Using a 100 mm Visual Analog Scale, the maximum mean reported pain score was 75 mm (95% CI: 70–80) and mean score at discharge was 39 mm (95% CI: 32–46). Ninety percent of caregiver respondents were satisfied (80/89, 90%); three (3/50, 6%) were dissatisfied in the PED and six (6/39, 15%) in the GED. Caregivers who rated their child’s pain at ED discharge as severe were less likely to be satisfied than those who rated their child’s pain as mild or moderate (p=0.034).
Despite continued pain upon discharge, most caregivers report being satisfied with their child’s pain management. Caregiver satisfaction is likely multifactorial, and physicians should be careful not to interpret satisfaction as equivalent to adequate provision of analgesia. The relationship between satisfaction and pain merits further exploration.
The undertreatment of pediatric pain is a significant concern among families, clinicians, and researchers. Although some have examined prehospital pain management, the deterrents to pediatric analgesia administration by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) have not yet been examined in Canada.
This study describes EMS pain-management practices and prehospital provider comfort treating pediatric pain. It highlights differences in pain management between adults and children and assesses the potential barriers, misconceptions, difficulties, and needs related to provision of pediatric analgesia.
A study-specific survey tool was created and distributed to all Primary Care Paramedics (PCPs) and Advanced Care Paramedics (ACPs) over four mandatory educational seminars in the city of Edmonton (Alberta, Canada) from September through December 2008.
Ninety-four percent (191/202) of EMS personnel for the city of Edmonton completed the survey. The majority of respondents were male (73%, 139/191), aged 26-35 (42%, 80/191), and had been in practice less than 10 years (53%, 101/191). Seventy-four percent (141/191) of those surveyed were ACPs, while 26% (50/191) were PCPs. Although the majority of respondents reported using both pain scales and clinical judgement to assess pain for adults (85%, 162/191) and adolescents (86%, 165/191), children were six times more likely than adults (31%, 59/191 vs 5%, 10/191) to be assessed by clinical judgement alone. Emergency Medical Services personnel felt more comfortable treating adults than children (P < .001), and they were less likely to treat children even if they were experiencing identical types and intensities of pain as adults (all P values <.05) and adolescents (all P values < .05). Twenty-five percent of providers (37/147) assumed pediatric patients required less analgesia due to immature nervous systems. Three major barriers to treating children's pain included limited clinical experience (34%, 37/110), difficulty in communication (24%, 26/110) and inability to assess children's pain accurately (21%, 23/110).
Emergency Medical Services personnel self-report that children's pain is less rigorously measured and treated than adults’ pain. Educational initiatives aimed at increasing clinical exposure to children, as well as further education regarding simple pain measurement tools for use in the field, may help to address identified barriers and discomfort with assessing and treating children.
RahmanA, CurtisS, DeBruyneB, SookramS, ThomsonD, LutzS, AliS. Emergency Medical Services Provider Comfort with Prehospital Analgesia Administration to Children. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2015;30(1):1-6.
To describe pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) physicians' reported pain management practices across Canada and explore factors that facilitate or hinder pain management.
This study was a prospective survey of Canadian pediatric emergency physicians. The Pediatric Emergency Research Canada physician database was used to identify participants, and a modified Dillman's Total Design Survey Method was used for recruitment.
The survey response rate was 68% (139 of 206). Most physicians were 31 to 50 years old (82%) with PEM training (56%) and had been in practice for less than 10 years (55%). Almost all pain screening in emergency departments (EDs) occurred at triage (97%). Twenty-four percent of physicians noted institutionally mandated pain score documentation. Ibuprofen and acetaminophen were commonly prescribed in the ED for mild to moderate pain (88% and 83%, respectively). Over half of urinary catheterizations (60%) and intravenous (53%) starts were performed without any analgesia. The most common nonpharmacologic interventions used for infants and children were pacifiers and distraction, respectively. Training background and gender of physicians affected the likelihood of using nonpharmacologic interventions. Physicians noted time restraints to be the greatest barrier to optimal pain management (55%) and desired improved access to pain medications (32%), better policies and procedures (30%), and further education (25%).
When analgesia was reported as provided, ibuprofen and acetaminophen were most commonly used. Both procedural and presenting pain remained suboptimally managed. There is a substantial evidence practice gap in children's ED pain management, highlighting the need for further knowledge translation strategies and policies to support optimal treatment.
To determine the frequency of false-positive Clostridium difficile toxin enzyme immunoassay (EIA) results in hospitalized children and to examine potential reasons for this false positivity.
Two tertiary care pediatric hospitals.
As part of a natural history study, prospectively collected EIA-positive stools were cultured for toxigenic C. difficile, and characteristics of children with false-positive and true-positive EIA results were compared. EIA-positive/culture-negative samples were recultured after dilution and enrichment steps, were evaluated for presence of the tcdB gene by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and were further cultured for Clostridium sordellii, a cause of false-positive EIA toxin assays.
Of 112 EIA-positive stools cultured, 72 grew toxigenic C. difficile and 40 did not, indicating a positive predictive value of 64% in this population. The estimated prevalence of C. difficile infection (CDI) in the study sites among children tested for this pathogen was 5%–7%. Children with false-positive EIA results were significantly younger than those with true-positive tests but did not differ in other characteristics. No false-positive specimens yielded C. difficile when cultured after enrichment or serial dilution, 1 specimen was positive for tcdB by PCR, and none grew C. sordellii.
Approximately one-third of EIA tests used to evaluate pediatric inpatients for CDI were falsely positive. This finding was likely due to the low prevalence of CDI in pediatric hospitals, which diminishes the test's positive predictive value. These data raise concerns about the use of EIA assays to diagnosis CDI in children.
Special observation (the allocation of nurses to watch over nominated patients) is one means by which psychiatric services endeavour to keep in-patients safe from harm. The practice is both contentious and of unknown efficacy.
To assess the relationship between special observation and self-harm rates, by ward, while controlling for potential confounding variables.
A multivariate cross-sectional study collecting data on self-harm, special observation, other conflict and containment, physical environment, patient and staff factors for a 6-month period on 136 acute-admission psychiatric wards.
Constant special observation was not associated with self-harm rates, but intermittent observation was associated with reduced self-harm, as were levels of qualified nursing staff and more intense programmes of patient activities.
Certain features of nursing deployment and activity may serve to protect patients. The efficacy of constant special observation remains open to question.
This editorial briefly summarises some aspects of research on socio-economic status and use of mental health services that have particular relevance for the theme of this issue of Epidemiologia e Psichiatria Sociale. This discussion takes a view from the perspective of health geography, which examines how the relationships between individuals and their social and physical environment result in variations in health and health care use. Three particular issues are considered here. First, the geographical distribution and organisation of psychiatric services may interact with social and economic factors in ways that are important for service use. Second, increasingly sophisticated ecological modelling strategies have elucidated the associations between socio-economic factors and service use at the population level. Third, more intensive, qualitative research complements these statistical analyses and encouraged reflection on the socio-economic processes, within psychiatric care settings, as well as in wider society, which influence service use.
Although the clinical benefits of dietary supplementation with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) has been recognised for a number of years, the molecular mechanisms by which particular PUFA affect metabolism of cells within the synovial joint tissues are not understood. This study set out to investigate how n-3 PUFA and other classes of fatty acids affect both degradative and inflammatory aspects of metabolism of articular cartilage chondrocytes using an in vitro model of cartilage degradation. Using well-established culture models, cartilage explants from normal bovine and human osteoarthritic cartilage were supplemented with either n-3 or n-6 PUFA, and cultures were subsequently treated with interleukin 1 to initiate catabolic processes that mimic cartilage degradation in arthritis. Results show that supplementation specifically with n-3 PUFA, but not n-6 PUFA, causes a decrease in both degradative and inflammatory aspects of chondrocyte metabolism, whilst having no effect on the normal tissue homeostasis. Collectively, our data provide evidence supporting dietary supplementation of n-3 PUFA, which in turn may have a beneficial effect of slowing and reducing inflammation in the pathogenesis of degenerative joint diseases in man.
This article analyses assessment procedures for young offenders aged 10
to 17 years who receive a police Final Warning or appear before Youth
Courts in England and Wales. Members of Youth Justice Teams (YOTs)
use detailed ‘Asset’ forms to collate information about the background,
education, life-style and personal characteristics of the young people. The
replies are scored to indicate the risk of further offending and the YOTs
make their recommendations for intervention. The author points out that
punishment has to be proportional to the crime but many young people
and their families require long-term help if they are to be diverted from