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We performed a prospective study of 501 patients, regardless of symptoms, admitted to the hospital, to estimate the predictive value of a negative nasopharyngeal swab for severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). At a positivity rate of 10.2%, the estimated negative predictive value (NPV) was 97.2% and the NPV rose as prevalence decreased during the study.
The Rapid ASKAP Continuum Survey (RACS) is the first large-area survey to be conducted with the full 36-antenna Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope. RACS will provide a shallow model of the ASKAP sky that will aid the calibration of future deep ASKAP surveys. RACS will cover the whole sky visible from the ASKAP site in Western Australia and will cover the full ASKAP band of 700–1800 MHz. The RACS images are generally deeper than the existing NRAO VLA Sky Survey and Sydney University Molonglo Sky Survey radio surveys and have better spatial resolution. All RACS survey products will be public, including radio images (with
15 arcsec resolution) and catalogues of about three million source components with spectral index and polarisation information. In this paper, we present a description of the RACS survey and the first data release of 903 images covering the sky south of declination
made over a 288-MHz band centred at 887.5 MHz.
COVID-19 is a “disaster of uncertainty” with ambiguity about its nature and trajectory. These features amplify its psychological toxicity, and increase the number of psychological casualties it inflicts. Uncertainty was fueled by lack of knowledge about the lethality of a disaster, its duration, and ambiguity in messaging from leaders and healthcare authorities. Human resilience can have a buffering effect on the psychological impact. Experts have advocated “flattening the curve” to slow the spread of the infection. Our strategy for crisis leadership is focused on flattening the rise in psychological casualties by increasing resilience among healthcare workers. This paper describes an approach employed at Johns Hopkins to promote and enhance crisis leadership. The approach is based on four factors: vision for the future, decisiveness, effective communication, and following a moral compass. We recommend specific actionable recommendations for implementing these factors that are being disseminated to frontline leaders and managers. The COVID-19 pandemic is destined to have a strong psychological impact that extends far beyond the end of quarantine. Following these guidelines has the potential to build resilience and thus reduce the number of psychological casualties and speed the return to normal – or at least the new normal in the post-COVID world.
To estimate the impact of California’s antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) mandate on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) rates in acute-care hospitals.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)–certified acute-care hospitals in the United States.
2013–2017 data from the CMS Hospital Compare, Provider of Service File and Medicare Cost Reports.
Difference-in-difference model with hospital fixed effects to compare California with all other states before and after the ASP mandate. We considered were standardized infection ratios (SIRs) for MRSA and CDI as the outcomes. We analyzed the following time-variant covariates: medical school affiliation, bed count, quality accreditation, number of changes in ownership, compliance with CMS requirements, % intensive care unit beds, average length of stay, patient safety index, and 30-day readmission rate.
In 2013, California hospitals had an average MRSA SIR of 0.79 versus 0.94 in other states, and an average CDI SIR of 1.01 versus 0.77 in other states. California hospitals had increases (P < .05) of 23%, 30%, and 20% in their MRSA SIRs in 2015, 2016, and 2017, respectively. California hospitals were associated with a 20% (P < .001) decrease in the CDI SIR only in 2017.
The mandate was associated with a decrease in CDI SIR and an increase in MRSA SIR.
Post-tonsillectomy bleeding is the most frequent complication of tonsillectomy. Inherited platelet function disorders have an estimated prevalence of 1 per cent. Any association between post-tonsillectomy bleeds and undiagnosed inherited platelet function disorders has not been investigated before.
To assess the prevalence of inherited platelet function disorders in a cohort of post-tonsillectomy bleed patients.
An observational cohort study was conducted using hospital digital records. Platelet function analyser 100 (‘PFA-100’) closure time was tested on post-tonsillectomy bleed patients who presented to hospital.
Between 2013 and 2017, 9 of 91 post-tonsillectomy bleed patients who underwent platelet function analyser 100 testing (9.89 per cent) had positive results. Five patients (5.49 per cent) had undiagnosed inherited platelet function disorders. Four patients had false positive results secondary to a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug effect (specificity of 95.3 per cent) proven by repeat testing six weeks later, off medication. The false negative rate was 0 per cent.
The prevalence of inherited platelet function disorders in our post-tonsillectomy bleed cohort is five-fold higher than in the general population. Platelet function analyser 100 testing when patients present with a post-tonsillectomy bleed allows management of their inherited platelet function disorder.
Schizophrenia is a disorder characterized by pervasive deficits in cognitive functioning. However, few well-powered studies have examined the degree to which cognitive performance is impaired even among individuals with schizophrenia not currently on antipsychotic medications using a wide range of cognitive and reinforcement learning measures derived from cognitive neuroscience. Such research is particularly needed in the domain of reinforcement learning, given the central role of dopamine in reinforcement learning, and the potential impact of antipsychotic medications on dopamine function.
The present study sought to fill this gap by examining healthy controls (N = 75), unmedicated (N = 48) and medicated (N = 148) individuals with schizophrenia. Participants were recruited across five sites as part of the CNTRaCS Consortium to complete tasks assessing processing speed, cognitive control, working memory, verbal learning, relational encoding and retrieval, visual integration and reinforcement learning.
Individuals with schizophrenia who were not taking antipsychotic medications, as well as those taking antipsychotic medications, showed pervasive deficits across cognitive domains including reinforcement learning, processing speed, cognitive control, working memory, verbal learning and relational encoding and retrieval. Further, we found that chlorpromazine equivalency rates were significantly related to processing speed and working memory, while there were no significant relationships between anticholinergic load and performance on other tasks.
These findings add to a body of literature suggesting that cognitive deficits are an enduring aspect of schizophrenia, present in those off antipsychotic medications as well as those taking antipsychotic medications.
Lewy body dementia, consisting of both dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD), is considerably under-recognised clinically compared with its frequency in autopsy series.
This study investigated the clinical diagnostic pathways of patients with Lewy body dementia to assess if difficulties in diagnosis may be contributing to these differences.
We reviewed the medical notes of 74 people with DLB and 72 with non-DLB dementia matched for age, gender and cognitive performance, together with 38 people with PDD and 35 with Parkinson's disease, matched for age and gender, from two geographically distinct UK regions.
The cases of individuals with DLB took longer to reach a final diagnosis (1.2 v. 0.6 years, P = 0.017), underwent more scans (1.7 v. 1.2, P = 0.002) and had more alternative prior diagnoses (0.8 v. 0.4, P = 0.002), than the cases of those with non-DLB dementia. Individuals diagnosed in one region of the UK had significantly more core features (2.1 v. 1.5, P = 0.007) than those in the other region, and were less likely to have dopamine transporter imaging (P < 0.001). For patients with PDD, more than 1.4 years prior to receiving a dementia diagnosis: 46% (12 of 26) had documented impaired activities of daily living because of cognitive impairment, 57% (16 of 28) had cognitive impairment in multiple domains, with 38% (6 of 16) having both, and 39% (9 of 23) already receiving anti-dementia drugs.
Our results show the pathway to diagnosis of DLB is longer and more complex than for non-DLB dementia. There were also marked differences between regions in the thresholds clinicians adopt for diagnosing DLB and also in the use of dopamine transporter imaging. For PDD, a diagnosis of dementia was delayed well beyond symptom onset and even treatment.
Over the last 25 years, the harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) has made a significant return to the Southern Bight of the North Sea and the English Channel due to a shift in distribution from northerly regions. Although the ecological drivers of this return are unclear, this species faces multiple threats in the region, including by-catch and habitat degradation. Ferry-based surveys were conducted year-round between November 2011 and June 2014 to assess the influence of environmental parameters upon the spatiotemporal distribution and relative abundance of harbour porpoises in the Southern Bight of the North Sea. A total of 1450 sightings of harbour porpoises were recorded during the 100 round-trip surveys carried out between Dunkirk (France) and Dover (England). Inter-annual and monthly variations in group size were observed, with largest groups recorded in 2014 (mean = 2.02) and in January (mean = 2.32). The relative abundance showed significant seasonal variation, with peaks recorded during winter months. An inter-annual increasing relative abundance was recorded during the study period. There was a seasonally dependent association with environmental variables, particularly depth, seabed roughness and current speed. Finally, predictions suggest large increases of the relative abundance in offshore habitats during winter months and over the study period.
At present, analysis of diet and bladder cancer (BC) is mostly based on the intake of individual foods. The examination of food combinations provides a scope to deal with the complexity and unpredictability of the diet and aims to overcome the limitations of the study of nutrients and foods in isolation. This article aims to demonstrate the usability of supervised data mining methods to extract the food groups related to BC. In order to derive key food groups associated with BC risk, we applied the data mining technique C5.0 with 10-fold cross-validation in the BLadder cancer Epidemiology and Nutritional Determinants study, including data from eighteen case–control and one nested case–cohort study, compromising 8320 BC cases out of 31 551 participants. Dietary data, on the eleven main food groups of the Eurocode 2 Core classification codebook, and relevant non-diet data (i.e. sex, age and smoking status) were available. Primarily, five key food groups were extracted; in order of importance, beverages (non-milk); grains and grain products; vegetables and vegetable products; fats, oils and their products; meats and meat products were associated with BC risk. Since these food groups are corresponded with previously proposed BC-related dietary factors, data mining seems to be a promising technique in the field of nutritional epidemiology and deserves further examination.
We describe an ultra-wide-bandwidth, low-frequency receiver recently installed on the Parkes radio telescope. The receiver system provides continuous frequency coverage from 704 to 4032 MHz. For much of the band (
), the system temperature is approximately 22 K and the receiver system remains in a linear regime even in the presence of strong mobile phone transmissions. We discuss the scientific and technical aspects of the new receiver, including its astronomical objectives, as well as the feed, receiver, digitiser, and signal processor design. We describe the pipeline routines that form the archive-ready data products and how those data files can be accessed from the archives. The system performance is quantified, including the system noise and linearity, beam shape, antenna efficiency, polarisation calibration, and timing stability.
Archaeological investigations by the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance Project at Cahal Pech uncovered several Terminal Classic (a.d. 750–900) peri-abandonment deposits and activity areas at this Belize River Valley center. The deposits contained a diverse assemblage of cultural remains located above and between collapsed architecture, associated with evidence for burning activities. In the past, archaeologists have generally interpreted similar assemblages as “problematic deposits”—“de facto” refuse (garbage)—as associated with building termination and desecration, or as evidence for rapid abandonment during the violent destruction of these ancient cities. It is argued here that the microstratigraphic excavation and contextual analysis of these features provide limited support for these explanations. Alternatively, we suggest that the deposits are more likely associated with peri-abandonment rituals that were conducted by a reduced remnant population at Cahal Pech, or by small groups who continued to reside in the site's periphery during the last stages of the Terminal Classic period.
The discovery of cultural remains on or above the floors of rooms and courtyards at several Maya sites has been interpreted by some archaeologists as problematic deposits, squatter's refuse, as evidence for feasting, termination rituals, de facto refuse, or rapid abandonment as a result of warfare. Investigations by the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance Project have recorded similar deposits at several surface and subterranean sites in Western Belize. Our regional, contextual, and methodological approaches for studying these deposits, coupled with ethnohistoric and ethnographic information, provide limited support for the interpretation of these remains as de facto refuse or due to rapid abandonment. Instead, we argue that these deposits are more likely the result of peri-abandonment activities such as propitiation rituals and/or pilgrimages during and after the gradual abandonment of sites in the Belize River Valley.
Problematic deposits, containing different types of artifacts and skeletal remains, are typically recovered on or near the surfaces of the terminal phase of elite civic-ceremonial architecture at ancient Maya sites. These contexts often date to the Terminal Classic period (~a.d. 750–900). They have been variously interpreted as evidence for site abandonment, squatting, warfare, or dedication or termination rituals. Sixteen chert bifaces were recovered from problematic deposits at the bases of Structures A2 and A3 in the elite Plaza A at Cahal Pech, Belize. Stone tools from problematic deposits are rarely examined in significant detail. Based on stylistic, metric, and use-wear analyses, the bifaces were likely produced locally, used during important hunting or warfare activities, and then ritually deposited in the Terminal Classic. These bifaces were likely hafted to spearthrower darts and represented “success” at hunting or fighting. The recovery of weaponry in problematic deposits that is not the direct result of warfare is an important observation because Mayanists have generally interpreted their presence in these contexts as evidence of warfare. The fact that the points were recovered in groups of seven and nine may indicate that they had important symbolic meanings that connected them to supernatural or mythological places or entities.
The Genomics Used to Improve DEpresssion Decisions (GUIDED) trial assessed outcomes associated with combinatorial pharmacogenomic (PGx) testing in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD). Analyses used the 17-item Hamilton Depression (HAM-D17) rating scale; however, studies demonstrate that the abbreviated, core depression symptom-focused, HAM-D6 rating scale may have greater sensitivity toward detecting differences between treatment and placebo. However, the sensitivity of HAM-D6 has not been tested for two active treatment arms. Here, we evaluated the sensitivity of the HAM-D6 scale, relative to the HAM-D17 scale, when assessing outcomes for actively treated patients in the GUIDED trial.
Outpatients (N=1,298) diagnosed with MDD and an inadequate treatment response to >1 psychotropic medication were randomized into treatment as usual (TAU) or combinatorial PGx-guided (guided-care) arms. Combinatorial PGx testing was performed on all patients, though test reports were only available to the guided-care arm. All patients and raters were blinded to study arm until after week 8. Medications on the combinatorial PGx test report were categorized based on the level of predicted gene-drug interactions: ‘use as directed’, ‘moderate gene-drug interactions’, or ‘significant gene-drug interactions.’ Patient outcomes were assessed by arm at week 8 using HAM-D6 and HAM-D17 rating scales, including symptom improvement (percent change in scale), response (≥50% decrease in scale), and remission (HAM-D6 ≤4 and HAM-D17 ≤7).
At week 8, the guided-care arm demonstrated statistically significant symptom improvement over TAU using HAM-D6 scale (Δ=4.4%, p=0.023), but not using the HAM-D17 scale (Δ=3.2%, p=0.069). The response rate increased significantly for guided-care compared with TAU using both HAM-D6 (Δ=7.0%, p=0.004) and HAM-D17 (Δ=6.3%, p=0.007). Remission rates were also significantly greater for guided-care versus TAU using both scales (HAM-D6 Δ=4.6%, p=0.031; HAM-D17 Δ=5.5%, p=0.005). Patients taking medication(s) predicted to have gene-drug interactions at baseline showed further increased benefit over TAU at week 8 using HAM-D6 for symptom improvement (Δ=7.3%, p=0.004) response (Δ=10.0%, p=0.001) and remission (Δ=7.9%, p=0.005). Comparatively, the magnitude of the differences in outcomes between arms at week 8 was lower using HAM-D17 (symptom improvement Δ=5.0%, p=0.029; response Δ=8.0%, p=0.008; remission Δ=7.5%, p=0.003).
Combinatorial PGx-guided care achieved significantly better patient outcomes compared with TAU when assessed using the HAM-D6 scale. These findings suggest that the HAM-D6 scale is better suited than is the HAM-D17 for evaluating change in randomized, controlled trials comparing active treatment arms.
The objective of this paper was to examine the implementation and effectiveness of a community-based intervention for hoarding disorder (HD) using Cognitive Rehabilitation and Exposure/Sorting Therapy (CREST).
This was a mixed-method, pre-post quasi-experimental study informed by the Practical, Robust Implementation and Sustainability Model for implementation science.
Program activities took place in San Diego County, mainly within clients’ homes or community, with some activities in-office.
Participants were aged 60 years or older, met eligibility for Medi-Cal or were uninsured, and met criteria for HD.
A manualized, mobile protocol that incorporated CREST was utilized.
The Clutter Image Rating and Hoarding Rating Scale were used as effectiveness outcomes. An investigator-created staff questionnaire was used to evaluate implementation.
Thirty-seven clients were reached and enrolled in treatment and 15 completed treatment during the initial 2 years of the program. There were significant changes in hoarding severity and clutter volume. Based on the initial 2 years of the program, funding was provided for expansion to cover additional San Diego County regions and hire more staff clinicians in year three.
Preliminary data suggest that the CREST intervention can be successfully implemented in a community setting with positive results for older adults with HD.
Psychiatric disorders, including eating disorders (EDs), have clinical outcomes that range widely in severity and chronicity. The ability to predict such outcomes is extremely limited. Machine-learning (ML) approaches that model complexity may optimize the prediction of multifaceted psychiatric behaviors. However, the investigations of many psychiatric concerns have not capitalized on ML to improve prognosis. This study conducted the first comparison of an ML approach (elastic net regularized logistic regression) to traditional regression to longitudinally predict ED outcomes.
Females with heterogeneous ED diagnoses completed demographic and psychiatric assessments at baseline (n = 415) and Year 1 (n = 320) and 2 (n = 277) follow-ups. Elastic net and traditional logistic regression models comprising the same baseline variables were compared in ability to longitudinally predict ED diagnosis, binge eating, compensatory behavior, and underweight BMI at Years 1 and 2.
Elastic net models had higher accuracy for all outcomes at Years 1 and 2 [average Area Under the Receiving Operating Characteristics Curve (AUC) = 0.78] compared to logistic regression (average AUC = 0.67). Model performance did not deteriorate when the most important predictor was removed or an alternative ML algorithm (random forests) was applied. Baseline ED (e.g. diagnosis), psychiatric (e.g. hospitalization), and demographic (e.g. ethnicity) characteristics emerged as important predictors in exploratory predictor importance analyses.
ML algorithms can enhance the prediction of ED symptoms for 2 years and may identify important risk markers. The superior accuracy of ML for predicting complex outcomes suggests that these approaches may ultimately aid in advancing precision medicine for serious psychiatric disorders.
Healthcare personnel who perform invasive procedures and are living with HIV or hepatitis B have been required to self-notify the NC state health department since 1992. State coordinated review of HCP utilizes a panel of experts to evaluate transmission risk and recommend infection prevention measures. We describe how this practice balances HCP privacy and patient safety and health.
To measure the association between statewide adoption of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) Core Elements for Hospital Antimicrobial Stewardship Programs (Core Elements) and hospital-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (MRSA) and Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) rates in the United States. We hypothesized that states with a higher percentage of reported compliance with the Core Elements have significantly lower MRSA and CDI rates.
All US states.
Observational longitudinal study.
We used 2014–2016 data from Hospital Compare, Provider of Service files, Medicare cost reports, and the CDC’s Patient Safety Atlas website. Outcomes were MRSA standardized infection ratio (SIR) and CDI SIR. The key explanatory variable was the percentage of hospitals that meet the Core Elements in each state. We estimated state and time fixed-effects models with time-variant controls, and we weighted our analyses for the number of hospitals in the state.
The percentage of hospitals reporting compliance with the Core Elements between 2014 and 2016 increased in all states. A 1% increase in reported ASP compliance was associated with a 0.3% decrease (P < .01) in CDIs in 2016 relative to 2014. We did not find an association for MRSA infections.
Increasing documentation of the Core Elements may be associated with decreases in the CDI SIR. We did not find evidence of such an association for the MRSA SIR, probably due to the short length of the study and variety of stewardship strategies that ASPs may encompass.