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The condition of caregivers is important to the quality of care received by people with Parkinson’s disease (PD), especially at the late disease stages. This study addresses the distress placed on caregivers by participants’ neuropsychiatric symptoms at different stages of PD in Taiwan
This prospective study enrolled 108 people with PD. All participants were examined with the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS), Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI), Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument (CASI), and Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scale. Caregiver distress was measured using the Neuropsychiatric Inventory Caregiver Distress Scale (NPI-D). Statistical analysis was used to explore the PD-related factors that contribute to caregiver distress.
The mean follow-up interval in the 108 PD participants were 24.0 ± 10.2 months with no participant lost to follow-up due to death. NPI-distress (the sum of NPI caregiver distress scale across the 12 domains of the NPI) was positively correlated with NPI-sum (the total score across the 12 domains of the NPI) (r = 0.787, p < 0.001), CDR (r = 0.403, p < 0.001), UPRDS (r = 0.276, p = 0.004), and disease duration (r = 0.246, p = 0.002), but negatively correlated with CASI (r = −0.237, p = 0.043) and MMSE (r = −0.281, p < 0.001). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that only NPI-sum and disease duration were independently correlated with NPI-distress.
The disease duration and NPI-sum are independent predictors of caregiver distress in Taiwanese populations with PD. Early detection and reduction of neuropsychiatric symptoms in people with PD can help decrease caregiver distress.
Information systems (IS) have facilitated workflow in the health care system for years. However, the utilization of IS in disaster medical assistance teams (DMATs) has been less studied.
In Taiwan, we started a program in 2008 to build up an information system, MEDical Assistance and Information Dashboard (MED-AID), to improve the capability and increase the efficiency of our national DMAT.
Method: The mission of our national DMAT was to provide acute trauma care and subacute outpatient care in the field after an emergency event (e.g., earthquakes). We built the IS through a user-oriented process to fit the need of the DMAT. We first analyzed the response work in the DMAT missions and reviewed the current paperwork. We evaluated the eligibility and effectiveness of the core functions of DMATs by experts in Taiwan and then developed the IS. The IS was then tested and revised each year in two table-top exercises and one regional full-scale exercise by the DMAT staffs who came from different hospitals in Taiwan.
During the past 10 years, we identified several core concepts of IS of DMAT: patient tracking, medical record, continuity of care, integration of referral resources, disease surveillance, patient information reporting, and medical resources management. The application of the IS facilitate the DMAT in providing safe patient care with continuous recording and integrate patient referral resources based on geographic information. The IS also help the planning in real-time disease surveillance and logistic function in the medical resources monitoring.
Information systems could facilitate patient care and relieve the workload on information analysis and resources management for DMATs.
Improvement of environmental cleaning in hospitals has been shown to decrease in-hospital cross transmission of pathogens. Several objective methods, including aerobic colony counts (ACCs), the adenosine triphosphate (ATP) bioluminescence assay, and the fluorescent marker method have been developed to assess cleanliness. However, the standard interpretation of cleanliness using the fluorescent marker method remains uncertain.
To assess the fluorescent marker method as a tool for determining the effectiveness of hospital cleaning.
A prospective survey study.
An academic medical center.
The same 10 high-touch surfaces were tested after each terminal cleaning using (1) the fluorescent marker method, (2) the ATP assay, and (3) the ACC method. Using the fluorescent marker method under study, surfaces were classified as totally clean, partially clean, or not clean. The ACC method was used as the standard for comparison.
According to the fluorescent marker method, of the 830 high-touch surfaces, 321 surfaces (38.7%) were totally clean (TC group), 84 surfaces (10.1%) were partially clean (PC group), and 425 surfaces (51.2%) were not clean (NC group). The TC group had significantly lower ATP and ACC values (mean ± SD, 428.7 ± 1,180.0 relative light units [RLU] and 15.6 ± 77.3 colony forming units [CFU]/100 cm2) than the PC group (1,386.8 ± 2,434.0 RLU and 34.9 ± 87.2 CFU/100 cm2) and the NC group (1,132.9 ± 2,976.1 RLU and 46.8 ± 119.2 CFU/100 cm2).
The fluorescent marker method provided a simple, reliable, and real-time assessment of environmental cleaning in hospitals. Our results indicate that only a surface determined to be totally clean using the fluorescent marker method could be considered clean.
Consumers' psychological perceptions of a product are significantly influenced by its appearance aesthetics, and thus product form plays an essential role in determining the commercial success of a product. The evolution of a product's form during the design process is typically governed by the designer's individual preferences and creative instincts. As a consequence, there is a risk that the product form may fail to satisfy the consumers' expectations or may induce an unanticipated consumer response. This study commences developing an integrated design approach based on the numerical definition of product form. A series of evaluation trials are then performed to establish the correlation between the product form features and the consumers' perceptions of the product image. The results of the evaluation trials are used to construct three different types of mathematical model (a multiple regression analysis model, a backpropagation neural network model, and a multiple regression analysis with a backpropagation neural network model) to predict the likely consumer response to any arbitrary product form. The feasibility of an integrated design approach is demonstrated using a three-dimensional knife form. Although this study takes an example for illustration and verification purposes, the methodology proposed in the present study is equally applicable to any form of consumer product.
A new quad-band bandpass filter for Global System for Mobile Communications, Wireless Local Area Network, and Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access is designed and fabricated using the stub-loaded resonator (SLR) technology without complex fabrication process, such as via-hole or multi-layer substrate. Owing to the embedded SLR, the proposed quad-mode resonator is compact. Equivalent circuits of the proposed quad-mode resonator are analyzed in detail, and high design freedom is shown because of shifting the passband frequencies individually. Good passband selectivity and isolation of the each passband at 1.8, 2.4, 3.5, and 5.2 GHz can be well achieved due to the transmission zeros appeared near the each passband edges. Experimental results show good agreement with the simulated results.
Atomic force microscopy probe-induced large-area ultrathin SiOx (x ≡ O/Si content ratio and x > 2) protrusions only a few nanometers high on a SiO2 layer were characterized by scanning photoemission microscopy (SPEM) and X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS). SPEM images of the large-area ultrathin SiOx protrusions directly showed the surface chemical distribution and chemical state specifications. The peak intensity ratios of the XPS spectra of the large-area ultrathin SiOx protrusions provided the elemental quantification of the Si 2p core levels and Si oxidation states (such as the Si4+, Si3+, Si2+, and Si1+ species). The O/Si content ratio (x) was evidently determined by the height of the large-area ultrathin SiOx protrusions.
ZnO films were grown on (0001) sapphire substrates by atomic layer deposition (ALD) using diethylzinc (DeZn) and nitrous oxide (N2O) in an inductively heated reactor operated at atmospheric pressure. Low-temperature (LT) ZnO buffer layers having various thicknesses were deposited at 400¢J followed by subsequent growth of ZnO films at 600¢J. Some of the ZnO films were then post-annealed at 1000¢J in the N2O flow. Under certain growth conditions, ZnO nanowires were formed on the post-annealed ZnO samples. Room temperature (RT) photoluminescence (PL) spectra of the ZnO nanowires show strong ultraviolet (UV) near band edge emissions at 3.27 eV with a typical full width at half-maximum ( FWHM ) of ~130 meV and quenched defect luminescence at 2.8 eV. 10 K PL spectra of the post-annealed ZnO all exhibit sharp excitonic emissions with the dominant emission being located at 3.36 eV having a FWHM of 4.6 meV.
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