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There are significant challenges to retaining indigenous biodiversity and ecological infrastructure in African cities. These include a lack of formal protection and status for remnant ecologically functional patches rendering them open to ad hoc human settlement, which is in part linked to weak governance and management emerging from complex histories, and competing crisis-ridden demands. Persistent gaps in knowledge and practice mean that the social, economic, development and well-being benefits of ecological infrastructure are not understood or demonstrated. Addressing these challenges requires the adoption of multiple top-down government interventions and bottom-up community and neighbourhood actions. The development of detailed case studies that engage with knowledge generation and sharing at multiple scales through co-learning practices will also help create a much-needed deeper understanding of development options within this context.
The Florida Children’s Medical Services (CMS) has a long-standing history of ensuring that providers of multiple paediatric subspecialties abide by the highest standards. The cardiac sub-committee has written quality standard documents that participating programmes must meet or exceed. These standards oversee paediatric cardiology services including surgery, catheterisations, and outpatient services. On April, 2012, the cardiac sub-committee decided to develop similar standards in paediatric electrophysiology. A task force was created and began this process. These standards include a catalogue of required and optional equipment, as well as staff and physician credentials. We sought to establish expectations of procedural numbers by practitioner and facility. The task force surveyed the members of the Pediatric and Congenital Electrophysiology Society. Finding no consensus, the task force is committed to generate the data by requiring that the CMS participating programmes enrol and submit data to the Multicenter Pediatric and Adult Congenital EP Quality (MAP-IT™) Initiative. This manuscript details the work of the Florida CMS Paediatric Electrophysiology Task Force.
Florida is the fourth largest state in the United States of America. In 2004, 218,045 live babies were born in Florida, accounting for approximately 1744 new cases of congenital heart disease. We review the initial experience of The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Congenital Heart Surgery Database with a regional outcomes report, namely the Society of Thoracic Surgeons Florida Regional Report.
Eight centres in Florida provide services for congenital cardiac surgery. The Children’s Medical Services of Florida provide a framework for quality improvement collaboration between centres. All congenital cardiac surgical centres in Florida have voluntarily agreed to submit data to the Society of Thoracic Surgeons Database. The Society of Thoracic Surgeons and Duke Clinical Research Institute prepared a Florida Regional Report to allow detailed regional analysis of outcomes for congenital cardiac surgery.
The report of 2007 from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons Congenital Heart Surgery Database includes details of 61,014 operations performed during the 4 year data harvest window, which extended from 2003 through 2006. Of these operations, 6,385 (10.5%) were performed in Florida. Discharge mortality in the data from Florida overall, and from each Florida site, with 95% confidence intervals, is not different from cumulative data from the entire Society of Thoracic Surgeons Database, both for all patients and for patients stratified by complexity.
A regional consortium of congenital heart surgery centres in Florida under the framework of the Children’s Medical Services has allowed for inter-institutional collaboration with the goal of quality improvement. This experience demonstrates, first, that the database maintained by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons can provide the framework for regional analysis of outcomes, and second, that voluntary regional collaborative efforts permit the pooling of data for such analysis.
The powdered contents of 17 Late Roman and Byzantine glass vessels used to hold cosmetic eye-paints (kohl) were analyzed. The principal analytical techniques employed were X-ray diffraction, Fourier-transform infrared spectrometry, X-ray fluorescence, and scanning electron microscopy. The materials detected are described, indicating those which may have been used as kohl. Also reported are analytical results from a solid chunk of material surrounding a fragment of a metal rod, also obtained from a kohl vessel.
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