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This study examines undergraduate research experiences at a minority-serving institution (MSI) in a political science laboratory. Students contributed to projects in a collaborative research lab at the University of California Riverside that involves undergraduate and graduate students in projects related to health and politics. Adopting a participatory approach to research, the study’s research participants also are coauthors who co-created the research protocols; collected the data; transcribed, coded, and analyzed the data; and wrote up the findings. Our analysis of 12 in-depth interviews with current and former undergraduate research assistants (RAs) found that their work in the lab challenged their perceptions of what research is and what it means to do research; shaped their path to pursue graduate studies; developed their social and professional skills; and offered an inclusive and humanizing experience with graduate students and faculty members. Challenges that the RAs mentioned included time management, bureaucratic accounting and payroll procedures, and feelings of self-doubt; the lab’s culture of inclusion and independence mitigated some of these challenges. Our findings align with the scholarly literature that suggests collaborative research opportunities can have beneficial outcomes, particularly for students from groups that are underrepresented in doctoral programs.
Surgical site infections (SSIs) following colorectal surgery (CRS) are among the most common healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). Reduction in colorectal SSI rates is an important goal for surgical quality improvement.
To examine rates of SSI in patients with and without cancer and to identify potential predictors of SSI risk following CRS
American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP) data files for 2011–2013 from a sample of 12 National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) member institutions were combined. Pooled SSI rates for colorectal procedures were calculated and risk was evaluated. The independent importance of potential risk factors was assessed using logistic regression.
Of 22 invited NCCN centers, 11 participated (50%). Colorectal procedures were selected by principal procedure current procedural technology (CPT) code. Cancer was defined by International Classification of Disease, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) codes.
The primary outcome of interest was 30-day SSI rate.
A total of 652 SSIs (11.06%) were reported among 5,893 CRSs. Risk of SSI was similar for patients with and without cancer. Among CRS patients with underlying cancer, disseminated cancer (SSI rate, 17.5%; odds ratio [OR], 1.66; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.23–2.26; P=.001), ASA score ≥3 (OR, 1.41; 95% CI, 1.09–1.83; P=.001), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD; OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.06–2.53; P=.02), and longer duration of procedure were associated with development of SSI.
Patients with disseminated cancer are at a higher risk for developing SSI. ASA score >3, COPD, and longer duration of surgery predict SSI risk. Disseminated cancer should be further evaluated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in generating risk-adjusted outcomes.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2018;39:555–562
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