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This paper explores the contextual and government response factors to the first-wave of the COVID-19 pandemic for 25 the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development nations using fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis. It considers configurations of: obesity rates; proportions of elderly people; inequality rates; country travel openness and COVID-19 testing regimes, against outcomes of COVID-19 mortality and case rates. It finds COVID-19 testing per case to be at the root of sufficient solutions for successful country responses, combined, in the most robust solutions, with either high proportions of elderly people or low international travel levels at the start of pandemic. The paper then locates its sample countries in relation to existing welfare typologies across two dimensions based on total social expenditure and proportional differences between the GINI coefficient before and after taxes and transfers. It finds that countries generally categorised as “liberal” in most existing typologies did the most poorly in their first-wave COVID-19 response.
What were the preventive tactics implemented across the globe? Nations varied in their approach. In Asia, the authorities took aim at the infected and their contacts. They tested widely, quarantined the sick, and isolated those who had been near them. That required enormous administrative efforts, massive amounts of information about citizens and their habits, and their subjects’ willingness to tolerate fierce interruptions of their lives. In the West, however, governments were unable or unwilling to impose the same degree of prevention on their citizens. Instead, they took an approach that was arguably even more interventionist, in that it affected almost all citizens, not just the ill and their contacts. They shut down society across the board for several months in the spring of 2020, requiring those who could to work from home, and closing schools, retail, restaurants, theaters, and anywhere else people might come in contact. The result was far greater economic devastation than in the more targeted Asian approach. But applying across-the-board measures did not involve the same degree of personal surveillance. Finally, some nations, above all Sweden, relied on citizens taking precautions under their own steam, without the law having to require them to.
As most children infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) present with mild symptoms or they are asymptomatic, the optimal strategy for molecular testing it is not well defined. The aim of the study was to determine the extent and aetiology of molecular testing for SARS-CoV-2 in Greek paediatric departments during the first phase of the pandemic and identify possible differences in incidence, depending on the age group and geographical area. We conducted a nationwide study of molecular testing for SARS-CoV-2 of children in paediatric departments between March and June 2020. A total of 65 paediatric departments participated in the study, representing 4901 children who were tested for SARS-CoV-2 and 90 (1.8%) were positive. Most paediatric cases were associated with topical outbreaks. Adolescents 11–16 years had the highest positivity rate (3.6%) followed by children 6–10 years (1.9%). However, since the testing rate significantly differed between age groups, the modified incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection per age group was highest in infants <1 year (19.25/105 population). Most children tested presented with fever (70.9%), respiratory (50.1%) or gastrointestinal symptoms (28.1%). Significant differences were detected between public and private hospitals regarding the positivity rate (2.34% vs. 0.39%, P-value <0.001). Significant variation in SARS-CoV-2 molecular testing positivity rate and incidence between age groups indicate discrepancies in risk factors among different age groups that shall be considered when ordering molecular testing.
Current COVID-19 guidelines recommend symptom-based screening and regular nasopharyngeal (NP) testing for healthcare personnel in high-risk settings. We sought to estimate case detection percentages with various routine NP and saliva testing frequencies.
Simulation modeling study.
We constructed a sensitivity function based on the average infectiousness profile of symptomatic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases to determine the probability of being identified at the time of testing. This function was fitted to reported data on the percent positivity of symptomatic COVID-19 patients using NP testing. We then simulated a routine testing program with different NP and saliva testing frequencies to determine case detection percentages during the infectious period, as well as the presymptomatic stage.
Routine biweekly NP testing, once every 2 weeks, identified an average of 90.7% (SD, 0.18) of cases during the infectious period and 19.7% (SD, 0.98) during the presymptomatic stage. With a weekly NP testing frequency, the corresponding case detection percentages were 95.9% (SD, 0.18) and 32.9% (SD, 1.23), respectively. A 5-day saliva testing schedule had a similar case detection percentage as weekly NP testing during the infectious period, but identified ~10% more cases (mean, 42.5%; SD, 1.10) during the presymptomatic stage.
Our findings highlight the utility of routine noninvasive saliva testing for frontline healthcare workers to protect vulnerable patient populations. A 5-day saliva testing schedule should be considered to help identify silent infections and prevent outbreaks in nursing homes and healthcare facilities.
Although first responders (FRs) represent a high-risk group for exposure, little information is available regarding their risk of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection. The purpose of the current study was to determine the serological prevalence of past COVID-19 infection in a cohort of municipal law enforcement (LE) and firefighters (FFs).
Descriptive analysis of a de-identified data reporting Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) immunoglobulin G (IgG), or COR2G, serology results for municipal FRs. As part of the serology process, FRs were surveyed for COVID-19-like symptoms since February 2020 and asked to report any prior COVID-19 nasal swab testing. Descriptive statistics and two-sided Chi Square tests with Yates correction were used to compare groups.
Of 318 FRs, 225 (80.2%) underwent serology testing (LE: 163/207 [78.7%]; FF: 92/111 [82.9%]). The prevalence of positive serology for all FRs tested was 3/255 (1.2%). Two LE (1.2%) and one FF (1.1%) had positive serology (P = 1.0). Two hundred and twenty-four FRs responded to a survey regarding prior symptoms and testing. Fifty-eight (25.9%) FRs (44 LE; 14 FFs) reported the presence of COVID-19-like symptoms. Of these, only nine (15.5%) received reverse transcriptase – polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing; none were positive. Two of the three FRs with positive serology reported no COVID-19-like symptoms and none of these responders had received prior nasal RT-PCR swabs. The overall community positive RT-PCR rate was 0.36%, representing a three-fold higher rate of positive seroprevalence amongst FRs compared with the general population (P = .07).
Amongst a cohort of municipal FRs with low community COVID-19 prevalence, the seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-19 IgG Ab was three-fold greater than the general community. Two-thirds of positive FRs reported a lack of symptoms. Only 15.5% of FRs with COVID-19-like symptoms received RT-PCR testing. In addition to workplace control measures, increased testing availability to FRs is critical in limiting infection spread and ensuring response capability.
Assessing intercultural communicative competence can be challenging for a number of reasons. First, there is little consensus regarding the precise definitions of subcomponents of intercultural competence, making it difficult to identify specific constructs to assess. Second, intercultural competence is locally situated, so the “same behavior or skill may be perceived as competent in one context but not another or one perceiver but not another, and thus no particular skill or ability is likely to ever be universally ‘competent’” (Spitzberg & Changnon, 2009, p. 6). Third, in a related vein, some aspects of intercultural communicative competence might not be suitable for classroom assessment, an issue that is addressed at the end of this chapter. In spite of these challenges, for personal and institutional purposes, assessing learners’ progress in intercultural communicative competence remains an important educational objective. Thus, in this chapter, I review several relevant concepts in L2/Lx assessment, then explore how they relate to understanding intercultural communicative competence, illustrating the theory with three case studies.
In recent years, an increasing number of countries have participated in cross-national assessments in education (CNAs), but their impact remains underexplored. We argue that CNA participation increases the capacity and motivation of policymakers to implement improvements in education through mechanisms at the elite, domestic, and transnational levels. We find evidence consistent with our propositions using an original survey of 77 education officials directly responsible for the planning and implementation of CNAs in 46 countries and personal interviews with 48 officials in target states, assessment agencies, and donor agencies.
Chapter 8 focuses on rotor blade technology, covering design, materials, manufacture, and testing. The role of fibre-reinforced composites is discussed, examining their superior mechanical and manufacturing properties. Their property of anisotropy enables composites to be tailored to match the direction of principal stresses in the most material-efficient way. Blade structural design is illustrated using bending theory for a cantilever beam, with stress and strain equations developed for a composite structure. The importance of section thickness and cross-sectional geometry is illustrated using the SERI/NREL blade profiles. An overview of blade attachment methods considers adhesive bonded root studs, T-bolts, and fibre-embedded studs that are integrated during the blade-moulding process. Most large blades are nowadays manufactured by vacuum resin infusion moulding (VRIM), and the chapter includes a description of this technique. There is a section on wood-laminate blades, which are still used in some applications, and comments on blade balancing and testing. The chapter concludes with a review of blade weight and technology trends based on some historic commmercial blade designs.
This paper describes the development and validation of a new 32-item test of knowledge of good clinical practice (GCP) administered to 625 clinical research coordinators. GCP training is mandated by study sponsors including the US National Institutes of Health. The effectiveness of training is rarely assessed, and the lack of validated tests is an obstacle to assessment. The GCP knowledge test was developed following evaluation of two existing widely used GCP tests to ensure it accurately reflects the content of current training. The final GCP knowledge test demonstrated good reliability (α = 0.69). It is a valid and reliable instrument for measuring knowledge of GCP. The test will be useful in assessing the effectiveness of GCP training programs as well as individuals’ mastery of GCP content.
Video games can be useful tools for assessing intelligence and cognitive differences. First, available video games are grouped into thirteen genres defining their basic features. Second, empirical studies relating intelligence and video games are reviewed. Results show very strong correlations between intelligence and video game performance at the latent level, which suggests that the latter taps core facets of the intelligence concept. Third, regarding cognitive processes, studies have focused on “action video games.” Results have shown that video game experience (hours per week) correlates mainly with visuospatial cognition, perception, and attention. Fourth, key neural correlates of video game performance are also discussed. The final section enumerates required features for a video game to properly measure intelligence differences using a video game elaborated for research purposes (Forgotten Depths).
This chapter discusses and reviews research on the relationship between two closely aligned concepts: intelligence and reasoning. We begin by defining reasoning in a general sense. Next, we review prominent theories and models of intelligence and reasoning in both the psychometric and cognitive psychological traditions, highlighting how the two constructs are both intertwined yet nonetheless conceptually discriminable. We follow by discussing issues involved in validly measuring reasoning, touching on considerations, concerns, and evidence informed by the cognitive and psychometric perspectives. Then, we review the relationship between reasoning and allied constructs and domains, including expertise, practical outcomes (e.g., educational and workplace achievement), working memory, and critical thinking. We conclude by sketching multiple avenues for future research.
This Handbook provides a contemporary and research-informed review of the topics essential to clinical psychological assessment and diagnosis. It outlines assessment issues that cross all methods, settings, and disorders, including (but not limited to) psychometric issues, diversity factors, ethical dilemmas, validity of patient presentation, psychological assessment in treatment, and report writing. These themes run throughout the volume as leading researchers summarize the empirical findings and technological advances in their area. With each chapter written by major experts in their respective fields, the text gives interpretive and practical guidance for using psychological measures for assessment and diagnosis.
In testing and simulation departments in product development (PD) data types, data structures and data storage are often very different. Exchange of data and information is normally not automated and often not supported by management systems. This can lead to loss of time and information. A literature study in combination with 20 expert interviews and the analysis of documents as well as data storage structures and IT systems in a PD department of a motorcycle manufacturer were performed. Test and simulation processes were classified and standardized, documentation formats analyzed, standards in Test Data Management (TDM) and Simulation Data Management (SDM) as well as verification and validation processes compared. IT support in SDM is better than in TDM. An integration of TDM and SDM could lead to improved collaboration between testing and simulation departments. Options for this integration could be specific ontologies, object-oriented interfaces, a higher-level intermediate application, use of a common standard or integration of one standard into another one.
In the first half of the nineteenth century, many Americans visited phrenological practitioners. Some clients were true believers, who consulted phrenology to choose an occupation, select a marriage partner and raise children. But, as this article demonstrates, many others consumed phrenology as an ‘experiment’, testing its validity as they engaged its practice. Consumers of ‘practical phrenology’ subjected themselves to examinations often to test the phrenologist and his practice against their own knowledge of themselves. They also tested whether phrenology was true, according to their own beliefs about race and gender. While historians have examined phrenology as a theory of the mind, we know less about its ‘users’ and how gender, race and class structured their engagement. Based on extensive archival research with letters and diaries, memoirs and marginalia, as well as phrenological readings, this study reveals how a continuum of belief existed around phrenology, from total advocacy to absolute denunciation, with lots of room for acceptance and rejection in between. Phrenologists’ notebooks and tools of salesmanship also show how an experimental environment emerged where phrenologists themselves embraced a culture of testing. In an era of what Katherine Pandora has described as ‘epistemological contests’, audiences confronted new museums, performances and theatres of natural knowledge and judged their validity. This was also true for phrenology, which benefited from a culture of contested authority. As this article reveals, curiosity, experimentation and even scepticism among users actually helped keep phrenology alive for decades.
Exploring language, culture and education among immigrants in the United States, this volume discusses the range of experiences in raising children with more than one language in major ethno-linguistic groups in New York. Research and practice from the fields of speech-language pathology, bilingual education, and public health in immigrant families are brought together to provide guidance for speech-language pathologists in differentiating language disorders from language variation, and for parents on how to raise their children with more than one language. Commonalities among dissimilar groups, such as Chinese, Korean, and Hispanic immigrants are analyzed, as well as the language needs of Arab-Americans, the home literacy practices of immigrant parents who speak Mixteco and Spanish, and the crucial role of teachers in bridging immigrants' classroom and home contexts. These studies shed new light on much-needed policy reforms to improve the involvement of culturally and linguistically diverse families in decisions affecting their children's education.
Software testing is one of the most popular validation techniques in the software industry. Surprisingly, we can only find a few approaches to testing in the context of logic programming. In this paper, we introduce a systematic approach for dynamic testing that combines both concrete and symbolic execution. Our approach is fully automatic and guarantees full path coverage when it terminates. We prove some basic properties of our technique and illustrate its practical usefulness through a prototype implementation.