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Psychiatric morbidity in prisons and police custody is well established, but little is known about individuals attending criminal court. There is international concern that vulnerable defendants are not identified, undermining their right to a fair trial.
To explore the prevalence of a wide range of mental disorders in criminal defendants and estimate the proportion likely to be unfit to plead.
We employed two-stage screening methodology to estimate the prevalence of mental illness, neurodevelopmental disorders and unfitness to plead, in 3322 criminal defendants in South London. Sampling was stratified according to whether defendants attended court from the community or custody. Face-to-face interviews, using diagnostic instruments and assessments of fitness to plead, were administered (n = 503). Post-stratification probability weighting provided estimates of the overall prevalence of mental disorders and unfitness to plead.
Mental disorder was more common in those attending court from custody, with 48.5% having at least one psychiatric diagnosis compared with 20.3% from the community. Suicidality was frequently reported (weighted prevalence 71.2%; 95% CI 64.2–77.3). Only 16.7% of participants from custody and 4.6% from the community were referred to the liaison and diversion team; 2.1% (1.1–4.0) of defendants were estimated to be unfit to plead, with a further 3.2% (1.9–5.3) deemed ‘borderline unfit’.
The prevalence of mental illness and neurodevelopmental disorders in defendants is high. Many are at risk of being unfit to plead and require additional support at court, yet are not identified by existing services. Our evidence challenges policy makers and healthcare providers to ensure that vulnerable defendants are adequately supported at court.
Insights into the dynamics of electrochemical processes are critically needed to improve our fundamental understanding of electron, charge, and mass transfer mechanisms and reaction kinetics that influence a broad range of applications, from the functionality of electrical energy-storage and conversion devices (e.g., batteries, fuel cells, and supercapacitors), to materials degradation issues (e.g., corrosion and oxidation), and materials synthesis (e.g., electrodeposition). To unravel these processes, in situ electrochemical scanning/transmission electron microscopy (ec-S/TEM) was developed to permit detailed site-specific characterization of evolving electrochemical processes that occur at electrode–electrolyte interfaces in their native electrolyte environment, in real time and at high-spatial resolution. This approach utilizes “closed-form” microfabricated electrochemical cells that couple the capability for quantitative electrochemical measurements with high spatial and temporal resolution imaging, spectroscopy, and diffraction. In this article, we review the state-of-the-art instrumentation for in situ ec-S/TEM and how this approach has resulted in new observations of electrochemical processes.
Globally, over 1.97 billion adults and 338 million children and adolescents are living with overweight and obesity, increasing the risk of numerous co-morbidities, including at least 12 cancers(1). WCRF/AICR conducted a literature review of diet and physical activity as determinants of weight gain, overweight and obesity in adults and children. We also introduce a novel evidence-based policy framework for promoting physical activity, and linked database, currently in development as part of the EU-funded CO-CREATE project on child and adolescent obesity prevention.
Materials and Methods
Evidence on diet and physical activity as determinants and risk of weight gain, overweight and obesity was systematically extracted from existing reviews and a systematic search for recent meta-analyses, then collated and analysed. The WCRF Continuous Update Project Expert Panel drew conclusions about which exposures influence risk of weight gain, overweight and obesity, using pre-defined criteria that included evidence of biological plausibility.
The Panel identified strong evidence that several diet and physical activity related exposures influence the risk of weight gain, overweight and obesity in adults and children (see table 1). Separate conclusions were drawn for adults and children in relation to screen time, considered a marker of sedentary time.
However, the Panel noted that as exposures tend to cluster, physiologically interact and share common biological mechanisms, they should not be regarded as absolutely ‘singular'but an integrated concept of interrelated exposures within a pattern of lifestyle.
Screen time (adults)‘Fast foods’‘Western type’ diet
For full list of footnotes, see Energy Balance and Body Fatness report(1).
Healthy dietary patterns help prevent excess weight gain. Achieving such patterns requires attention to the broader economic, environmental and social factors that influence and constrain people's behaviour. The findings of this report support the need for evidence-based public health policy to help create health-enabling environments, particularly for children and adolescents. The WCRF International MOVING framework(2) presents a package of policies to promote physical activity, which alongside wider public health policy can help address the multiple drivers of overweight and obesity.
Adequate pain relief at the scene of injury and during transport to hospital is a major challenge in all acute traumas, especially for those with hip fractures, whose injuries are difficult to immobilize and long-term outcomes may be adversely affected by administration of opiate analgesics. Fascia Iliaca Compartment Block (FICB) is a procedure routinely undertaken by clinicians in emergency departments for hip fracture patients, but use by paramedics at the scene of emergency calls, is not yet evaluated (1).
We undertook a randomized controlled feasibility trial using novel audited scratchcard randomization to allocate eligible patients to FICB or usual care. Paramedics are recruited and trained to assess patients for hip fracture and carry out FICB. We will follow up patients to assess accuracy of paramedic diagnosis, acceptability to patients and paramedics, compliance of paramedics and also measures of pain, side effects, time in hospital and quality of life in order to plan a full trial if appropriate. The primary outcome measure is health related quality of life, measured using Short Form (SF)-12 at 1 and 6 months. Interviews and focus groups will be used to understand acceptability of FICB to patients and paramedics. This study was funded by Health and Care Research Wales (1003).
We have developed:
• paramedic pathway to assess patients for hip fracture and FICB
• paramedic training package, delivered by Consultant Anaesthetist
• randomization scratchcards.
To date we have recruited nineteen paramedics; ten are fully trained and recruiting patients, the remainder are being trained. Fifty-four patients have been randomized and thirty-five have consented to follow-up. Thirteen 1-month and five 6-month follow-up questionnaires have been received.
This study will enable us to recommend whether to undertake a definitive multi-centre randomized controlled trial of FICB by paramedics for hip fracture to determine if the procedure is effective for patients and worthwhile for the National Health Service.