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From 2014 to 2020, we compiled radiocarbon ages from the lower 48 states, creating a database of more than 100,000 archaeological, geological, and paleontological ages that will be freely available to researchers through the Canadian Archaeological Radiocarbon Database. Here, we discuss the process used to compile ages, general characteristics of the database, and lessons learned from this exercise in “big data” compilation.
Pilot programs are integral to catalyzing and accelerating research at Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hubs. However, little has been published about the structure and operationalization of pilot programs or how they impact the translational research enterprise at CTSAs. The North Carolina Translational and Clinical Science Institute (NC TraCS), the CTSA hub at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) conducted an evaluation case study to describe the pilot program structure, assess process outcomes, and provide a framework for other institutions to utilize for the evaluation of their respective pilot programs.
We describe the operationalization of our pilot program, the evaluation framework utilized to evaluate the program, and how we analyzed available data to understand how our pilot funding opportunities were utilized by investigators. We calculated application volumes and funding rates by investigator position title and pilot application type. We also reviewed feedback provided by pilot Principal Investigators (PIs) to understand how many pilot projects were completed, NC TraCS service utilization, and barriers to research. Limited data on publications and subsequent funding was also reviewed.
Between 2009 and 2019 the NC TraCS Pilot Program received 2343 applications and funded 933 projects, ranging from $2000 to $100,000 in amount, with an overall funding rate of 39.8%. Utilization of NC TraCS services had positive impacts on both resubmission funding and project completion rates.
This process evaluation indicates that the program is being operationalized in a way that successfully fulfills the program mission while meeting the needs of a diverse group of researchers.
In Australia, the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous mental health and well-being is a major human rights issue, and escalating suicide rates represent a national emergency. This chapter describes the Australian human rights context and developments within the discipline and profession of psychology to address these inequities, with the reconciliation action plan developed by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) as one commitment to change. The focus on respectful relationships, cultural safety, and promoting self-determination is part of the background leading to the APS apology to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The apology highlighted the importance of a commitment by all psychologists to reconciliation and to modifying their attitudes and work practices to ensure a culturally appropriate, responsive, and safe workforce. The Australian Indigenous Psychology Education Project (AIPEP) represents a focus on the education and employment of the psychology workforce and illustrates collaboration with key stakeholders in psychology education to provide frameworks and guidelines for embedding cultural awareness, responsiveness, and competence throughout all psychology education.
To enhance the performance evaluation of Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hubs, we examined the utility of advanced bibliometric measures that go beyond simple publication counts to demonstrate the impact of translational research output.
The sampled data included North Carolina Translational and Clinical Science Institute (NC TraCS)-supported publications produced between September 2008 and March 2017. We adopted advanced bibliometric measures and a state-of-the-art bibliometric network analysis tool to assess research productivity, citation impact, the scope of research collaboration, and the clusters of research topics.
Totally, 754 NC TraCS-supported publications generated over 24,000 citation counts by April 2017 with an average of 33 cites per article. NC TraCS-supported research papers received more than twice as many cites per year as the average National Institute of Health-funded research publications from the same field and time. We identified the top productive researchers and their networks within the CTSA hub. Findings demonstrated the impact of NC TraCS in facilitating interdisciplinary collaborations within the CTSA hub and across the CTSA consortium and connecting researchers with right peers and organizations.
Both improved bibliometrics measures and bibliometric network analysis can bring new perspectives to CTSA evaluation via citation influence and the scope of research collaborations.
Method of levels (MOL) is an innovative transdiagnostic cognitive therapy with potential advantages over existing psychological treatments for psychosis.
The Next Level study is a feasibility randomised controlled trial (RCT) of MOL for people experiencing first-episode psychosis. It aims to determine the suitability of MOL for further testing in a definitive trial (trial registration ISRCTN13359355).
The study uses a parallel group non-masked feasibilityRCT design with two conditions: (a) treatment as usual (TAU) and (b) TAU plus MOL. Participants (n = 36) were recruited from early intervention in psychosis services. Outcome measures are completed at baseline, 10 and 14 months. The primary outcomes are recruitment and retention.
Participants’ demographic and clinical characteristics are presented along with baseline data.
Next Level has recruited to target, providing evidence that it is feasible to recruit to a RCT of MOL for first-episode psychosis.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) pulsed-field type (PFT) USA300 causes skin and soft tissue infections in military recruits and invasive disease in hospitals. Chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) is used to reduce MRSA colonization and infection. The impact of CHG on the molecular epidemiology of MRSA is not known.
To evaluate the impact of 2% CHG—impregnated cloths on the molecular epidemiology of MRSA colonization.
Marine Officer Candidate School, Quantico, Virginia, in 2007.
Thrice-weekly application of CHG-impregnated or control (Comfort Bath; Sage) cloths over the entire body.
Baseline and serial (every 2 weeks) nasal and/or axillary swab samples were assessed for MRSA colonization. Molecular analysis was performed with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis.
During training, 77 subjects (4.9%) acquired MRSA, 26 (3.3%) in the CHG group and 51 (6.5%) in the control group (P = .004). When analyzed for PFT, 24 subjects (3.1%) in the control group but only 6 subjects (0.8%) in the CHG group (P = .001) had USA300. Of the 167 colonizing isolates recovered from 77 subjects, 99 were recovered from the control group, including USA300 (40.4%), USA800 (38.4%), USA1000 (12.1%), and USA100 (6.1%), and 68 were recovered from the CHG group, including USA800 (51.5%), USA100 (23.5%), and USA300 (13.2%).
CHG decreased the transmission of MRSA—more specifically, USA300—among military recruits. In addition, USA300 and USA800 outcompeted other MRSA PFTs at incident colonization. Future studies should evaluate the broad-based use of CHG to decrease transmission of USA300 in hospital settings.
Evidence clearly suggests that the therapeutic relationship is important to successful outcomes in psychotherapy. It is less clear as to why this might be the case. Throughout the literature, various factors such as warmth, empathy, compassion, unconditional positive regard, and openness are identified as key. The way in which factors such as warmth and empathy bring about an amelioration of psychological distress, however, is not entirely obvious. We suggest that one possible mechanism through which these factors become important is by helping to create an environment where clients can examine their problems freely. Furthermore, we propose that when the therapeutic relationship is therapeutic, clients feel comfortable to consider whatever comes into their mind; with any filtering or evaluating happening after the ideas have been expressed, and not before. Psychological processes identified as maintaining psychological distress (e.g. thought suppression, avoidance, rumination) block this capacity. Our suggestion is that as internal experiences are being examined, the client has an opportunity to become aware of facets of the problem that were previously unattended to; and to continue this process outside therapy. Through this awareness-raising process the client's problem can be reorganized via intrinsic learning processes to achieve a more contented state of mind.
Bullying in schools continues to be a problem despite the best efforts of educators, researchers, and clinicians. Of most concern for the present study is that some children experience long-term victimisation by their peers. To improve our understanding in this area, the phenomenology of being bullied over the course of the school year was investigated with three participants aged from 11 to 15 years. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews and analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). Two superordinate themes with associated subthemes were identified: ‘experience of victimisation’ (‘being different’, ‘dynamics of bullying’, ‘school’, and ‘social network’) and ‘strategies’ (‘help-seeking’, ‘behaviour’, ‘response to bullying’, ‘personal coping’, and ‘solutions’). Through these interviews some of the factors that may contribute to long-term peer victimisation were identified. The implications of these results for prevention and intervention are discussed.
Application of CHG-impregnated or control (Comfort Bath; Sage) cloths applied over entire body thrice weekly.
Recruits were monitored daily for SSTI. Baseline and serial nasal and/or axillary swabs were collected to assess S. aureus colonization.
Of 1,562 subjects enrolled, 781 (from 23 platoons) underwent CHG-impregnated cloth application and 781 (from 21 platoons) underwent control cloth application. The rate of compliance (defined as application of 50% or more of wipes) at 2 weeks was similar (CHG group, 63%; control group, 67%) and decreased over the 6-week period. The mean 6-week SSTI rate in the CHG-impregnated cloth group was 0.094, compared with 0.071 in the control group (analysis of variance model rate difference, 0.025 ± 0.016; P = .14). At baseline, 43% of subjects were colonized with methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA), and 2.1% were colonized with MRSA. The mean incidence of colonization with MSSA was 50% and 61% (P = .026) and with MRSA was 2.6% and 6.0% (P = .034) for the CHG-impregnated and control cloth groups, respectively.
CHG-impregnated cloths applied thrice weekly did not reduce rates of SSTI among recruits. S. aureus colonization rates increased in both groups but to a lesser extent in those assigned to the CHG-impregnated cloth Intervention. Antecedent S. aureus colonization was not a risk factor for SSTI. Additional studies are needed to identify effective measures for preventing SSTI among military recruits.
Dismantling studies are used in psychotherapy in order to understand the important components of treatment. Typically, this has occurred so that people could understand the unique contributions provided by cognitive versus behavioural techniques. Recently, mindfulness-based approaches have apparently added a third dimension to the dismantling enterprise. Dismantling is seen as an important way of understanding the change process in psychotherapy and, therefore, clarifying how we might most effectively promote change. The way in which an entity is dismantled, however, exposes assumptions about the nature of the entity and its organization. In this paper we argue that dismantling studies in psychotherapy have perhaps generated more confusion than consensus and have provided little practical benefit for clinicians. We suggest that the phenomenon of control might provide a unifying perspective from which to approach the integration of behavioural, cognitive, and mindfulness approaches. In one sense all these seemingly different approaches are doing the same thing and it is this ‘thing’ we highlight in this paper.
This paper looks at issues regarding case formulation in psychotherapy. Case formulation is well recognized as being helpful in the conceptualizing of psychological problems and as a useful tool in the practice of cognitive therapy. Control, as opposed to behaviour, is increasingly being seen as that human process most relevant to psychopathology. We look at the diagnosis and treatment of a small number of people, treated in a naturalistic setting, who were selected without any specific criteria other than being people whose problems were treated using the Method of Levels, a form of cognitive therapy based on the principles of Perceptual Control Theory, and who completed both pre- and post-treatment questionnaires. We then consider how the problems these people presented with, and their treatment, might be formulated as a result of taking this approach.
Background: Perceptual Control Theory (PCT) suggests that psychological distress can be conceptualized as the by-product of conflicted control systems. Method: Using a program of psychotherapy based on the principles of PCT called the Method of Levels (MOL), a 12-month study was conducted with 120 patient participants and 4 clinicians. In this study, analyses of statistical significance were conducted. Qualitative data were also analysed to understand psychotherapy from patients' perspectives. Data were collected on the attendance patterns of patients, their ages, referral problem, and socio-economic background. A standardized questionnaire measured pre and post treatment effects. The null hypothesis of no difference between pre and post treatment scores was examined by the derivation of p values and the construction of 95% confidence intervals. Results: In all cases the null hypothesis was rejected. Conclusions: Results suggest that MOL is a useful form of psychotherapy that warrants further investigation.
The psychological treatment offered to clients is important. However, an equally important consideration may be the way the treatment is delivered. Reducing waiting lists and improving access to services are priorities for many health services. So is increasing patient control over their own health-care outcomes. While waiting times and access to services have typically been addressed by increasing the numbers of clinicians available, our work suggests that a strategy of providing patients with the ability to determine the frequency and duration of their treatment may be an option that is simpler, more effective, and financially more attractive. After describing policy and ethical guidelines as well as empirical and theoretical information, we provide data from our work in one GP practice about the improvements in waiting times and access to services that occurred when we adopted an approach that allowed patients rather than clinicians to decide how the organization of treatment would occur. There seem to be many benefits to this approach; however, it may also raise dilemmas for clinicians when patients' preferences differ from their own. Ultimately, these conundrums can only be reconciled by the individual clinicians based on their attitudes to mental health problems and service provision.
The Method of Levels (MOL) shares many similarities with other therapeutic approaches and is perhaps most distinguishable by what it does not include rather than what it does use in sessions. MOL has two basic steps which are followed in an iterative procedure until the patient/client experiences a change or shift in their understanding and experience of a problem. This article explains the steps and uses examples and suggestions for practice to promote understanding.
The NASA Discovery mission EPOXI, utilizing the Deep Impact flyby spacecraft, comprises two phases: EPOCh (Extrasolar Planet Observation and Characterization) and DIXI (Deep Impact eXtended Investigation). With EPOCh, we use the 30-cm high resolution visible imager to obtain ultraprecise photometric light curves of known transiting planet systems. We will analyze these data for evidence of additional planets, via transit timing variations or transits; for planetary moons or rings; for detection of secondary eclipses and the constraint of geometric planetary albedos; and for refinement of the system parameters. Over a period of four months, EPOCh observed four known transiting planet systems, with each system observed continuously for several weeks. Here we present an overview of EPOCh, including the spacecraft and science goals, and preliminary photometry results.