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Background: Singapore General Hospital (SGH) is the largest acute tertiary-care hospital in Singapore. Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at risk of acquiring COVID-19 in both the community and workplaces. SGH has a robust exposure management process including prompt contact tracing, immediate ring fencing, lock down of affected cubicles or single room isolation for patient contacts, and home isolation orders for staff contacts of COVID-19 cases during the containment phase of the pandemic. Contacts were also placed on enhanced surveillance with PCR testing on days 1 and 4 as well as daily antigen rapid tests (ARTs) for 10 days after exposure. Here, we describe the characteristic of HCWs with COVID-19 during the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: This retrospective observational study included all SGH HCWs who acquired COVID-19 during the third wave (ie, the 18-week period from September 1 to December 31, 2021) of the COVID-19 pandemic. Univariate analysis was used to compare characteristics of work-associated infection (WAI) and community-acquired infection (CAI) among HCWs. Results: Among a workforce of >10,000 at SGH, 335 HCWs acquired COVID-19 during study period. CAI (exposure to known clusters or household contact) accounted for 111 HCW infections (33.1%). Also, 48 HCWs (14.3%) had a WAI (ie, acquired at their work places where there was no patient contact). Among WAsI, only 5 HCWs had hospital-acquired infection (confirmed by phylogenetic analysis). The sources of exposure for the remaining 176 HCWs were unknown. Weekly incidence of COVID-19 among HCWs was comparable to the epidemiology curve of all cases in Singapore (Fig. 1 and 2). The mean age of HCWs with COVID-19 was 39.6 years, and most were women. At the time of positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test, 223 HCWs were symptomatic, and 67 (20.0%) of them had comorbidities. Only 16 HCWs (4.8%) required hospitalization, and all recovered fully with no mortality (Table 1). Being female was associated with community COVID-19 acquisition (OR, 4.6, P Conclusions: During the thrid wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, a higher percentage of HCWs at SGH acquired the infection from the community than from the workplace. Safe management measures, such as universal masking, social distancing, and robust exposure management processes including prompt contact tracing and environmental disinfection, can reduce the risk of COVID-19 in the hospital work environment.
Sporadic clusters of healthcare-associated coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) occurred despite intense rostered routine surveillance and a highly vaccinated healthcare worker (HCW) population, during a community surge of the severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) B.1.617.2 δ (delta) variant. Genomic analysis facilitated timely cluster detection and uncovered additional linkages via HCWs moving between clinical areas and among HCWs sharing a common lunch area, enabling early intervention.
The purpose of the current study was to develop a validated FFQ to evaluate the intake of non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS) in child and adolescent Asian populations.
Intensive and overall market research was performed to create the applicable NNS-FFQ with thirteen food categories and 305 items. Six intense sweeteners, including acesulfame potassium, aspartame, sucralose, glycyrrhizin, steviol glycosides and sorbitol, were investigated. The validity and reproducibility of the NNS-FFQ were evaluated. The validity was further assessed by examining the consistency of reported NNS intake compared with urinary biomarkers using Cohen’s κ analysis.
This work was considered to be relevant in Asian societies.
One hundred and two children and adolescents recruited from several clinics were invited to participate in the current study.
High content validity indices and high content validity ratio levels were revealed for each sweetener and food category. Reproducibility among subjects was satisfactory. Significant moderate correlations between estimated steviol glycoside/sucralose consumption and sensitive urinary biomarker levels were demonstrated (κ values were 0·59 and 0·45 for steviol glycosides and sucralose, respectively), indicating that the NNS-FFQ can be used to assess an individual’s NNS intake. The dietary intense sweetener consumption pattern evaluated in this measurement was similar to those observed in other Asian countries but differed from those observed in Western populations with respect to types and amounts of NNS.
This validated NNS-FFQ can be an applicable and useful tool to evaluate NNS intake in future epidemiological and clinical studies.
Subthreshold depression (sD) negatively impacts well-being and psychosocial function and is more prevalent compared with major depressive disorder (MDD). However, as adults with sD are less likely to seek face-to-face intervention, internet-based cognitive-behavioral therapy (ICBT) may overcome barriers of accessibility to psychotherapy. Although several trials explored the efficacy of ICBT for sD, the results remain inconsistent. This study evaluated whether ICBT is effective in reducing depressive symptoms among Chinese adults with sD.
A randomized controlled trial was performed. The participants were randomly assigned to 5 weeks of ICBT, group-based face-to-face cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), or a waiting list (WL). Assessments were conducted at baseline, post-intervention and at a 6-month follow-up. The primary outcome measured depressive symptoms using the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D). Outcomes were analyzed using a mixed-effects model to assess the effects of ICBT.
ICBT participants reported greater reductions on all the outcomes compared to the WL group at post-intervention. The ICBT group showed larger improvement on the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) at post-intervention (d = 0.12) and at follow-up (d = 0.10), and with CES-D at post-intervention (d = 0.06), compared to the CBT group.
ICBT is effective in reducing depressive symptoms among Chinese adults with sD, and improvements in outcomes were sustained at a 6-month follow-up. Considering the low rates of face-to-face psychotherapy, our findings highlight the considerable potential and implications for the Chinese government to promote the use of ICBT for sD in China.
Little is known about how sociodemographic and clinical factors affect the caregiving burden of persons with schizophrenia (PwSs) with transition in primary caregivers.
This study aimed to examine the predictive effects of sociodemographic and clinical factors on the caregiving burden of PwSs with and without caregiver transition from 1994 to 2015 in rural China.
Using panel data, 206 dyads of PwSs and their primary caregivers were investigated in both 1994 and 2015. The generalised linear model approach was used to examine the predictive effects of sociodemographic factors, severity of symptoms and changes in social functioning on the caregiving burden with and without caregiver transition.
The percentages of families with and without caregiver transition were 38.8% and 61.2%, respectively. Among families without caregiver transition, a heavier burden was significantly related to a larger family size and more severe symptoms in PwSs. Deteriorated functioning of ‘social activities outside the household’ and improved functioning of ‘activity in the household’ were protective factors against a heavy caregiving burden. Among families with caregiver transition, younger age, improved marital functioning, deteriorated self-care functioning, and better functioning of ‘social interest or concern’ were significant risk factors for caregiving burden.
The effects of sociodemographic and clinical correlates on the caregiving burden were different among families with and without caregiver transition. It is crucial to explore the caregiver arrangement of PwSs and the risk factors for burden over time, which will facilitate culture-specific family interventions, community-based mental health services and recovery.
To describe OXA-48–like carbapenem-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) outbreaks at Singapore General Hospital between 2018 and 2020 and to determine the risk associated with OXA-48 carriage in the 2020 outbreak.
Outbreak report and case–control study.
Singapore General Hospital (SGH) is a tertiary-care academic medical center in Singapore with 1,750 beds.
Active surveillance for CPE is conducted for selected high-risk patient cohorts through molecular testing on rectal swabs or stool samples. Patients with CPE are isolated or placed in cohorts under contact precautions. During outbreak investigations, rectal swabs are repeated for culture. For the 2020 outbreak, a retrospective case–control study was conducted in which controls were inpatients who tested negative for OXA-48 and were selected at a 1:3 case-to-control ratio.
Hospital wide, the median number of patients with healthcare-associated OXA-48 was 2 per month. In the 3-year period between 2018 and 2020, 3 OXA-48 outbreaks were investigated and managed, involving 4 patients with Klebsiella pneumoniae in 2018, 55 patients with K. pneumoniae or Escherichia coli in 2019, and 49 patients with multispecies Enterobacterales in 2020. During the 2020 outbreak, independent risk factors for OXA-48 carriage on multivariate analysis (49 patients and 147 controls) were diarrhea within the preceding 2 weeks (OR, 3.3; 95% CI, 1.1–10.7; P = .039), contact with an OXA-48–carrying patient (OR, 8.7; 95% CI, 1.9–39.3; P = .005), and exposure to carbapenems (OR, 17.2; 95% CI, 2.2–136; P = .007) or penicillin (OR, 16.6; 95% CI, 3.8–71.0; P < .001).
Multispecies OXA-48 outbreaks in our institution are likely related to a favorable ecological condition and selective pressure exerted by antimicrobial use. The integration of molecular surveillance epidemiology of the healthcare environment is important in understanding the risk of healthcare–associated infection to patients.
Mounting evidence showed that insula contributed to the neurobiological mechanism of suicidal behaviors in bipolar disorder (BD). However, no studies have analyzed the dynamic functional connectivity (dFC) of insular Mubregions and its association with personality traits in BD with suicidal behaviors. Therefore, we investigated the alterations of dFC variability in insular subregions and personality characteristics in BD patients with a recent suicide attempt (SA).
Thirty unmedicated BD patients with SA, 38 patients without SA (NSA) and 35 demographically matched healthy controls (HCs) were included. The sliding-window analysis was used to evaluate whole-brain dFC for each insular subregion seed. We assessed between-group differences of psychological characteristics on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2. Finally, a multivariate regression model was adopted to predict the severity of suicidality.
Compared to NSA and HCs, the SA group exhibited decreased dFC variability values between the left dorsal anterior insula and the left anterior cerebellum. These dFC variability values could also be utilized to predict the severity of suicidality (r = 0.456, p = 0.031), while static functional connectivity values were not appropriate for this prediction. Besides, the SA group scored significantly higher on the schizophrenia clinical scales (p < 0.001) compared with the NSA group.
Our findings indicated that the dysfunction of insula–cerebellum connectivity may underlie the neural basis of SA in BD patients, and highlighted the dFC variability values could be considered a neuromarker for predictive models of the severity of suicidality. Moreover, the psychiatric features may increase the vulnerability of suicidal behavior.
Evidence of couples’ BMI and its influence on birth weight is limited and contradictory. Therefore, this study aims to assess the association between couple’s preconception BMI and the risk of small for gestational age (SGA)/large for gestational age (LGA) infant, among over 4·7 million couples in a retrospective cohort study based on the National Free Pre-pregnancy Checkups Project (NFPCP) between December 1, 2013 and November 30, 2016 in China. Among the live births, 256,718 (5·44%) SGA events and 506,495 (10·73%) LGA events were documented, respectively. After adjusting for confounders, underweight men had significantly higher risk [OR 1·17 95%CI (1·15-1·19)] of SGA infants compared with men with normal BMI, while a significant and increased risk of LGA infants was obtained for overweight and obese men [OR 1·08 (95% CI: 1·06-1·09); OR 1·19 (95%CI 1·17-1·20)] respectively. The restricted cubic spline (RCS) result revealed a non-linearly decreasing dose-response relationship of paternal BMI (less than 22·64) with SGA. Meanwhile, a non-linearly increasing dose-response relationship of paternal BMI (more than 22·92) with LGA infants was observed. Moreover, similar results about the association between maternal preconception BMI and SGA/LGA infants were obtained. Abnormal preconception BMIs in either women or men were associated with increased risk of SGA/LGA infants, respectively. Overall, couple’s abnormal weight before pregnancy may be an important preventable risk factor for SGA/LGA infants.
This study examined the pattern of medical utilization and the distribution of comorbidities shortly before death among adolescents who died from suicide and compared these data with those of living controls.
From Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database, this study identified adolescents aged 10–19 years who died from suicide (n = 935) between 1 January 2000, and 31 December 2016, by linking each patient with the national mortality database. The researchers conducted a nested case–control study through risk set sampling, and for each case, 20 age- and sex-matched controls (n = 18 700) were selected from the general population. The researchers applied conditional logistic regression to investigate differences in medical utilization and physical and psychiatric comorbidities between cases and controls.
Cases had a higher proportion of contact with the psychiatric department but a similar proportion of contact with any non-psychiatric medical department within 1 year before suicide compared with controls. There were 18.6% of adolescent suicide victims who only had contacted with a psychiatric department 3 months before suicide. Moreover, cases had a higher proportion of contact with non-psychiatric services within 3 months before suicide, particularly with emergency, surgery, and internal medicine departments. Cases had higher risks of several psychiatric disorders and physical illnesses, including heart diseases, pneumonia, and ulcer disease, than did controls.
The findings of increased medical utilization and higher risks of physical and psychiatric comorbidities in adolescent suicide victims are crucial for developing specific interventions to prevent suicide in this population.
Noncompressible torso hemorrhage (NCTH) is a major challenge in prehospital bleeding control and is associated with high mortality. This study was performed to estimate medical knowledge and the perceived barriers to information acquisition among health-care workers (HCWs) regarding NCTH in China.
A self-administered and validated questionnaire was distributed among 11 WeChat groups consisting of HCWs engaged in trauma, emergency, and disaster rescue.
A total of 575 HCWs participated in this study. In the knowledge section, the majority (87.1%) denied that successful hemostasis could be obtained by external compression. Regarding attitudes, the vast majority of HCWs exhibited positive attitudes toward the important role of NCTH in reducing prehospital preventable death (90.4%) and enthusiasm for continuous learning (99.7%). For practice, fewer than half of HCWs (45.7%) had heard of NCTH beforehand, only a minority (14.3%) confirmed they had attended relevant continuing education, and 16.3% HCWs had no access to updated medical information. The most predominant barrier to information acquisition was the lack of continuing training (79.8%).
Knowledge and practice deficiencies do exist among HCWs. Obstacles to update medical information warrant further attention. Furthermore, education program redesign is also needed.
The coffee white stem borer, Xylotrechus quadripes Chevrolat (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae), is a major destructive pest of Coffea arabica L. (Gentianales: Rubiaceae), widely planted in many Asian countries, including China. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) is a common method for quantitative analysis of gene transcription levels. To obtain accurate and reliable qRT-PCR results, it is necessary to select suitable reference genes to different experimental conditions for normalizing the target gene expression. However, the stability of the expression of reference genes in X. quadripes has rarely been studied. In this study, the expression stability of nine candidate reference genes were investigated under biotic and abiotic conditions for use in qRT-PCR's normalization. By integrating the results of four algorithms of NormFinder, BestKeeper, geNorm, and RefFinder, the optimal reference gene combinations in different experimental conditions were performed as follows: RPL10a and EIF3D were the optimal reference genes for developmental stage samples, EIF4E, RPL10a, and RPS27a for tissue samples, V-ATP and EF1α for the sex samples, EIF3D and V-ATP for temperature treatment, RPS27a and RPL10a for insecticide stress, and RPL10a, RPS27a, and EF1α for all the samples. This study will help to obtain the stable internal reference genes under biotic and abiotic conditions and lay the foundation for in-depth functional research of target genes or genomics on olfactory molecular mechanisms, temperature adaptability, and insecticide resistance in X. quadripes.
Coastal surveillance video helps officials to obtain on-site visual information on maritime traffic situations, which benefits building up the maritime transportation detection infrastructure. The previous ship detection methods focused on detecting distant small ships in maritime videos, with less attention paid to the task of ship detection from coastal surveillance video. To address this challenge, a novel framework is proposed to detect ships from coastal maritime images in three typical traffic situations in three consecutive steps. First the Canny detector is introduced to determine the potential ship edges in each maritime frame. Then, the self-adaptive Gaussian descriptor is employed to accurately rule out noisy edges. Finally, the morphology operator is developed to link the detected separated edges to connected ship contours. The model's performance is tested under three typical maritime traffic situations. The experimental results show that the proposed ship detector achieved satisfactory performance (in terms of precision, accuracy and time cost) compared with other state-of-the-art algorithms. The findings of the study offer the potential of providing real-time visual traffic information to maritime regulators, which is crucial for the development of intelligent maritime transportation.
Late Mesozoic igneous rocks are important for deciphering the Mesozoic tectonic setting of NE China. In this paper, we present whole-rock geochemical data, zircon U–Pb ages and Lu–Hf isotope data for Early Cretaceous volcanic rocks from the Tulihe area of the northern Great Xing’an Range (GXR), with the aim of evaluating the petrogenesis and genetic relationships of these rocks, inferring crust–mantle interactions and better constraining extension-related geodynamic processes in the GXR. Zircon U–Pb ages indicate that the rhyolites and trachytic volcanic rocks formed during late Early Cretaceous time (c. 130–126 Ma). Geochemically, the highly fractionated I-type rhyolites exhibit high-K calc-alkaline, metaluminous to weakly peraluminous characteristics. They are enriched in light rare earth elements (LREEs) and large-ion lithophile elements (LILEs) but depleted in high-field-strength elements (HFSEs), with their magmatic zircons ϵHf(t) values ranging from +4.1 to +9.0. These features suggest that the rhyolites were derived from the partial melting of a dominantly juvenile, K-rich basaltic lower crust. The trachytic volcanic rocks are high-K calc-alkaline series and exhibit metaluminous characteristics. They have a wide range of zircon ϵHf(t) values (−17.8 to +12.9), indicating that these trachytic volcanic rocks originated from a dominantly lithospheric-mantle source with the involvement of asthenospheric mantle materials, and subsequently underwent extensive assimilation and fractional crystallization processes. Combining our results and the spatiotemporal migration of the late Early Cretaceous magmatic events, we propose that intense Early Cretaceous crust–mantle interaction took place within the northern GXR, and possibly the whole of NE China, and that it was related to the upwelling of asthenospheric mantle induced by rollback of the Palaeo-Pacific flat-subducting slab.
Epidemic forecasting provides an opportunity to predict geographic disease spread and counts when an outbreak occurs and plays a key role in preventing or controlling their adverse impact. However, conventional prediction models based on complex mathematical modelling rely on the estimation of model parameters, which yields unreliable and unsustainable results. Herein, we proposed a simple model for predicting the epidemic transmission dynamics based on nonlinear regression of the epidemic growth rate and iterative methods, which is applicable to the progression of the COVID-19 outbreak under the strict control measures of the Chinese government. Our model yields reliable and accurate results as confirmed by the available data: we predicted that the total number of infections in mainland China would be 91 253, and the maximum number of beds required for hospitalised patients would be 62 794. We inferred that the inflection point (when the growth rate turns from positive to negative) of the epidemic across China would be mid-February, and the end of the epidemic would be in late March. This model is expected to contribute to resource allocation and planning in the health sector while providing a theoretical basis for governments to respond to future global health crises or epidemics.
Previous studies suggested that a disturbance of the dopamine system underlies the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder (BD). In addition, the therapeutic action of medications for treating BD, such as valproate (VPA), might modulate dopamine system activity, but it remains unclear. Here, we aimed to investigate the role of the striatal dopamine transporter (DAT) in BD patients and in social defeat (SD) mice treated with VPA.
We enrolled community-dwelling controls (N = 18) and BD patients (N = 23) who were treated with VPA in a euthymic stage. The striatal DAT availabilities were approached by TRODAT-1 single photon emission computed tomography. We also established a chronic SD mouse model and treated mice with 350 mg/kg VPA for 3 weeks. Behavioral tests were administered, and striatal DAT expression levels were determined.
In humans, the level of striatal DAT availability was significantly higher in euthymic BD patients (1.52 ± 0.17 and 1.37 ± 0.23, p = 0.015). Moreover, the level of striatal DAT availability was also negatively correlated with the VPA concentration in BD patients (r = −0.653, p = 0.003). In SD mice, the expression of striatal DAT significantly increased (p < 0.001), and the SD effect on DAT expression was rescued by VPA treatment.
The striatal DAT might play a role in the pathophysiology of BD and in the therapeutic mechanism of VPA. The homeostasis of DAT might represent a new therapeutic strategy for BD patients.
A 1178 J near diffraction limited 527 nm laser is realized in a complete closed-loop adaptive optics (AO) controlled off-axis multi-pass amplification laser system. Generated from a fiber laser and amplified by the pre-amplifier and the main amplifier, a 1053 nm laser beam with the energy of 1900 J is obtained and converted into a 527 nm laser beam by a KDP crystal with 62% conversion efficiency, 1178 J and beam quality of 7.93 times the diffraction limit (DL). By using a complete closed-loop AO configuration, the static and dynamic wavefront distortions of the laser system are measured and compensated. After correction, the diameter of the circle enclosing 80% energy is improved remarkably from 7.93DL to 1.29DL. The focal spot is highly concentrated and the 1178 J, 527 nm near diffraction limited laser is achieved.
With the aging of population, miniaturization of family size and changes of diseases spectrum, the demand for long-term care of Chinese elderly is increasing, which is challenging the existing long-term care system. China is currently carrying out pilot work for a long-term care insurance system, and Jingmen is one of the pilot cities, however more detailed research on payment is needed. Therefore, this paper draws on case-mixed-adjusted prospective payment system to provide designs for long-term care insurance in pilot cities.
Adopting a case analysis method, this paper focuses on system for payment of Skilled Nursing Facility under Part A of the Medicare program—Patient Driven Payment Model, and discusses the implementation plan of a long-term care insurance in Jingmen City from the perspectives of payment methods, payment grouping and payment standards.
Currently Jingmen adopts per-diem payment for long-term care insurance, so it is necessary to establish a payment based on population characteristics and demands. So, the patients should be classified into a group for each of the five case-mix adjusted components: physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, nursing and non-therapy ancillary. In addition, this payment model also includes a “variable per diem adjustment” to account for the changes in patient costs more accurately.
The theoretical system of a long-term care insurance payment method is developed, and a localization plan for case-mixed-adjusted prospective payment system for long-term care insurance is provided. Therefore, Jingmen long-term care insurance payment should adopt “case-mixed adjustment”, strengthening the relationship between individual clinical characteristics and payment.
Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite, which can infect almost all warm-blooded animals, including humans, leading to toxoplasmosis. Currently, the effective treatment for human toxoplasmosis is the combination of sulphadiazine and pyrimethamine. However, both drugs have serious side-effects and toxicity in the host. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the discovery of new anti-T. gondii drugs with high potency and less or no side-effects. Our findings suggest that lumefantrine exerts activity against T. gondii by inhibiting its proliferation in Vero cells in vitro without being toxic to Vero cells (P ≤ 0.01). Lumefantrine prolonged mice infected with T. gondii from death for 3 days at the concentration of 50 μg L−1 than negative control (phosphate-buffered saline treated only), and reduced the parasite burden in mouse tissues in vivo (P ≤ 0.01; P ≤ 0.05). In addition, a significant increase in interferon gamma (IFN-γ) production was observed in high-dose lumefantrine-treated mice (P ≤ 0.01), whereas interleukin 10 (IL-10) and IL-4 levels increased in low-dose lumefantrine-treated mice (P ≤ 0.01). The results demonstrated that lumefantrine may be a promising agent to treat toxoplasmosis, and more experiments on the protective mechanism of lumefantrine should be undertaken in further studies.