The aim of this study was to explore pandemic telehealth use among walk-in emergency department (ED) patients at Bern University Hospital.
As in sequential explanatory designs, quantitative data were collected first. To explain the quantitative results, telehealth use was explored qualitatively using an interview guide informed by the quantitative results.
The University Hospital of Bern ED designed a follow-up cross-sectional study (baseline done in 2019) to assess telehealth use among ED walk-in patients during the pandemic (2021).
We included participants of all age groups that had consented to a follow-up qualitative study and also ensured a gender and age balance. We aimed for data saturation that was achieved by the seventh key informant. A total of 11 key informants took part in the study.
Three main themes emerged, namely: (1) telehealth use means the use of a telephone for many; (2) telehealth has both remits and limits; and (3) perceived future telehealth opportunities and threats.
The pandemic seems not to have increased telehealth use among walk-in ED patients. The slight increase observed in telehealth use among women seems related to the use of the COVID-19 app from trusted sites like the Federal Office of Public Health. Telehealth emerged as having remits, limits, opportunities and threats. The human factor preference emerged as very important to all key informants. The fear that telehealth threatens the human factor cannot be over emphasised. The telephone remains the biggest telehealth modality among Swiss ED walk-in patients.
Hydrocephalus and myelomeningocele (MMC) place disproportionate burdens of disease on low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs). MMC-associated hydrocephalus and its sequelae result in a spectrum of severely devastating clinical manifestations, for which LMICs are disproportionately unprepared in terms of human, capital and technological resources. This study aims to review and compare the management and outcomes of infant MMC-associated hydrocephalus in LMICs and high-income countries.
This systematic review and meta-analysis will follow the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses 2020 guidelines. The following databases will be searched without restrictions on language, publication date or country of origin: EMBASE, MEDLINE, The Cochrane Library, Global Index Medicus, African Journals Online and SciELO. All peer-reviewed studies of primary data reporting management and outcomes of infant MMC-associated hydrocephalus will be included. Where high-quality homogeneous studies exist, meta-analyses will be conducted to compare the management and outcomes of MMC-associated hydrocephalus across socioeconomic and geographical regions of the world. The primary outcome will be treatment failure of the first-line hydrocephalus treatment, which we defined operationally as the performance of a second intervention for the same reason as the first. Secondary outcomes include time to failure, rates of mortality and postoperative complications.
Ethical approval was not applicable because this study does not involve human participants. Dissemination strategies will include publication in a peer-reviewed journal, oral and poster presentations at conferences and an interactive web application to facilitate interaction with the findings and promote the discussion and sharing of findings on social media.
The Scottish Diabetes Research Network (SDRN)-diabetes research platform was established to combine disparate electronic health record data into research-ready linked datasets for diabetes research in Scotland. The resultant cohort, ‘The SDRN-National Diabetes Dataset (SDRN-NDS)’, has many uses, for example, understanding healthcare burden and socioeconomic trends in disease incidence and prevalence, observational pharmacoepidemiology studies and building prediction tools to support clinical decision making.
We estimate that >99% of those diagnosed with diabetes nationwide are captured into the research platform. Between 2006 and mid-2020, the cohort comprised 472 648 people alive with diabetes at any point in whom there were 4 million person-years of follow-up. Of the cohort, 88.1% had type 2 diabetes, 8.8% type 1 diabetes and 3.1% had other types (eg, secondary diabetes). Data are captured from all key clinical encounters for diabetes-related care, including diabetes clinic, primary care and podiatry and comprise clinical history and measurements with linkage to blood results, microbiology, prescribed and dispensed drug and devices, retinopathy screening, outpatient, day case and inpatient episodes, birth outcomes, cancer registry, renal registry and causes of death.
There have been >50 publications using the SDRN-NDS. Examples of recent key findings include analysis of the incidence and relative risks for COVID-19 infection, drug safety of insulin glargine and SGLT2 inhibitors, life expectancy estimates, evaluation of the impact of flash monitors on glycaemic control and diabetic ketoacidosis and time trend analysis showing that diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) remains a major cause of death under age 50 years. The findings have been used to guide national diabetes strategy and influence national and international guidelines.
The comprehensive SDRN-NDS will continue to be used in future studies of diabetes epidemiology in the Scottish population. It will continue to be updated at least annually, with new data sources linked as they become available.
At the peak of Uganda’s first wave of SARS-CoV-2 in May 2020, one in three COVID-19 cases was linked to the haulage sector. This triggered a mandatory requirement for a negative PCR test result at all ports of entry and exit, resulting in significant delays as haulage drivers had to wait for 24–48 hours for results, which severely crippled the regional supply chain.
To support public health and economic recovery, we aim to develop and test a mobile phone-based digital contact tracing (DCT) tool that both augments conventional contact tracing and also increases its speed and efficiency.
To test the DCT tool, we will use a stratified sample of haulage driver journeys, stratified by route type (regional and local journeys).
We will include at least 65% of the haulage driver journeys ~83 200 on the network through Uganda. This allows us to capture variations in user demographics and socioeconomic characteristics that could influence the use and adoption of the DCT tool. The developed DCT tool will include a mobile application and web interface to collate and intelligently process data, whose output will support decision-making, resource allocation and feed mathematical models that predict epidemic waves.
The main expected result will be an open source-tested DCT tool tailored to haulage use in developing countries.
This study will inform the safe deployment of DCT technologies needed for combatting pandemics in low-income countries.
This work has received ethics approval from the School of Public Health Higher Degrees, Research and Ethics Committee at Makerere University and The Uganda National Council for Science and Technology. This work will be disseminated through peer-reviewed publications, our websites https://project-thea.org/ and Github for the open source code
Older people receiving healthcare in long-term care contexts (eg, home healthcare, sheltered housing and nursing home contexts) are especially vulnerable to developing frailty and functional decline. Considering the negative effects associated with these conditions and the possibility of preventing them from progressing, it is vital that nurses possess a broad knowledge base related to them. Particularly as prevention related to these conditions lies well within their remit. Such knowledge could guide the development of effective models of care, ensuring continuity and, hence, quality of care. Our objective will be to review published literature on existing models of care targeting frailty and/or functional decline and how these conditions are described by older people themselves, significant others and nurses in relation to long-term care.
The scoping review will be conducted in accordance with Arksey and O’Malley’s methodological framework. Recent methodological developments will be considered. PubMed, CINAHL and PsycINFO will be searched. Eligibility criteria will be peer-reviewed papers and written in English. All types of study designs will be eligible and included papers will be quality and ethically assessed. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA)-Protocol checklist for protocols and the PRISMA for Scoping Reviews checklist were followed in this paper.
As the study outlined in this protocol is a scoping review, no ethics approval was needed for this protocol nor for the upcoming study. The findings will be published in an open-access, peer-reviewed journal. Additionally, the findings will guide a research project following the Medical Research Council’s framework for developing and evaluating complex interventions. Thus, supporting us in developing a model of care related to the detection and prevention of frailty and/or functional decline among older people in a long-term care context.
The Protective Behavioural Strategies for Marijuana (PBSM-17) scale serves to identify and measure strategies employed by young adults before, during or after cannabis use. After the adaptation and translation of the PBSM-17 into French, a methodological study was conducted to evaluate the psychometric properties of this French version (FV) and of the original English version (EV) in a sample of bilingual Canadian university students.
A total of 211 cannabis users (mean age=22.1 years) completed a sociodemographic questionnaire, a question on frequency of cannabis use (four categories: 1–3 times a month, once a week, more than once a week, everyday) and both versions (FV and EV) of the PBSM-17.
Both versions had similar internal reliability (α=0.91; α=0.88). The one-factor solution explained 36.46% of the variance for the FV and 42.26% for the EV. As hypothesised, greater use of protective behavioural strategies was related to lower frequency of cannabis use. One-way ANOVA test results revealed a statistically significant difference in use of strategies by frequency of cannabis use for both the FV (F(3, 207)=27.38, p
The FV and EV of the PBSM-17 demonstrated satisfactory psychometric properties. The proposed FV of the PBSM-17 is a reliable instrument that could be used for research and clinical purposes. Protective behavioural strategies can serve as indicator of lower-risk cannabis use and could be targeted in prevention interventions.
To quantify the frequency of antibiotic treatments attributable to specific enteric pathogens due to the treatment of diarrhoea among children in the first 2 years of life in low-resource settings.
Secondary analysis of a longitudinal birth cohort study, Etiology, Risk Factors, and Interactions of Enteric Infections and Malnutrition and the Consequences for Child Health and Development (MAL-ED).
This study was conducted at eight sites in Bangladesh, Brazil, India, Nepal, Peru, Pakistan, South Africa and Tanzania.
We analysed 9392 reported diarrhoea episodes, including 6677 with molecular diagnostic test results, as well as 31 408 non-diarrhoeal stools from 1715 children aged 0–2 years with 2 years of complete follow-up data.
We estimated incidence rates and the proportions of antibiotic use for diarrhoea and for all indications attributable to the top 10 aetiologies of diarrhoea. We estimated associations between specific aetiologies and antibiotic treatment, and assessed whether clinical characteristics of the diarrhoea episodes mediated these relationships.
Shigella and rotavirus were the leading causes of antibiotic treatment, responsible for 11.7% and 8.6% of diarrhoea treatments and 14.8 and 10.9 courses per 100 child-years, respectively. Shigella and rotavirus-attributable diarrhoea episodes were 46% (RR: 1.46; 95% CI: 1.33 to 1.60), and 19% (RR: 1.19; 95% CI: 1.09 to 1.31) more likely to be treated with antibiotics, respectively, compared with other aetiologies. Considering antibiotic uses for all indications, these two pathogens accounted for 5.6% of all antibiotic courses, 19.3% of all fluoroquinolone courses and 9.5% of all macrolide courses. Among indicated treatments for dysentery, Shigella and Campylobacter jenjui/Campylobacter coli were responsible for 27.5% and 8.5% of treated episodes, respectively.
The evidence that Shigella and rotavirus were disproportionately responsible for antibiotic use due to their high burden and severity further strengthens the value of interventions targeted to these pathogens. Interventions against Campylobacter could further prevent a large burden of indicated antibiotic treatment for dysentery, which could not be averted by antibiotic stewardship interventions.
To determine the association between left atrial epicardial conduction time (LAECT), fibrosis and atrial fibrillation (AF) recurrence after thoracoscopic surgical ablation of persistent AF.
Single tertiary care centre in the Netherlands.
Patients with persistent AF from the randomised Atrial Fibrillation Ablation and Autonomic Modulation via Thoracoscopic Surgery (AFACT)-trial were included. Patients eligible for thoracoscopic AF ablation were included, full inclusion and exclusion criteria were previously published. All patients underwent thoracoscopic ablation, encompassing pulmonary vein isolation with an additional roof and trigone lesion. In patients with conduction block across the roof and trigone lesion, LAECT was measured. LAECT was defined as the time to local activation at one side of the roofline on pacing from the opposite side. Collagen fibre density was quantified from left atrial appendage histology.
Primary outcome: AF recurrence during 2 years of follow-up.
121 patients were included, of whom 35(29%) were women, age was 60.4±7.8 and 51% (62) had at least one AF recurrence during 2 years of follow-up. LAECT was longer in patients with versus without AF recurrence (182±43 ms vs 147±29 ms, p
LAECT is correlated with collagen fibre density and BMI and is independently associated with AF recurrence in patients with persistent AF. In these patients, LAECT appears to reflect substrate characteristics beyond clinical AF type and left atrial volume.
Monitoring instructions related to adverse drug reactions (ADRs) are not always clearly described in clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) and not always easily applicable in daily clinical practice. The aim of this study was to assess the clarity of presentation and the applicability of ADR-related monitoring instructions in CPGs for children and adolescents treated with antipsychotic drugs.
Guidelines from different countries were selected, and monitoring instructions for 13 ADR-related parameters were assessed.
To assess the clarity and the applicability of the sections concerning monitoring instructions in each CPG, the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation instrument was used. To assess the clarity and the applicability of the monitoring instructions for each ADR-related parameter, the Systematic Information for Monitoring score was used.
Six CPGs were included. Overall, the presentation of the monitoring instructions in the different CPGs was clear; three CPGs scored >75%. All CPGs scored lower on applicability, as, for example, the barriers and facilitators were poorly described. The number of ADR-related parameters included in the CPGs varied between 8 and 13. Why and what to monitor was always described for each parameter. When to start monitoring was also often described (90.2%), but when to stop monitoring was less frequently described (37.4%).
The CPGs differed on the parameters that needed to be monitored. Overall, the monitoring instructions were clearly presented, but improvement in their applicability is required. By improving the monitoring instructions, CPGs can provide better guidance on monitoring ADRs in daily clinical practice.
Patient safety is a healthcare discipline that aims to prevent and reduce patient harm, risks and errors during the provision of healthcare. Given the size of the nursing workforce in the healthcare system the inclusion of patient safety in the undergraduate nursing curriculum is necessary to enhance a safe culture in the daily work of their future careers. To this end, it is essential to apply effective teaching strategies to develop patient safety competencies. This review will aim to evaluate the effectiveness of educational interventions in developing patient safety knowledge, skills, behaviours and attitudes in undergraduate nursing students within the existing topic areas of the WHO Multi-professional Patient Safety Curriculum Guide.
The databases Medline, CINAHL, Scopus, Education Research Complete, The Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, LILACS, Medes and Grey literature such as ClinicalTrials.gov, Google Scholar, DART-Europe, ProQuest Dissertations, CAPES thesis and dissertations, The Virginia Henderson Global e-Repository, Mednar and Thesis Canada will be searched from July 2011 to January 2022. Two independent reviewers will conduct the search, extract the data and assess the risk of bias for the included studies, using standardised critical appraisal instruments from the Joanna Briggs Institute. The quality of the evidence will be assessed using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment Development and Evaluation methodology. Studies will be pooled in the meta-analysis. Alternatively, the findings will be presented in narrative form, including tables and figures, to aid in data presentation.
This study raises no ethical issues. The findings will be disseminated through presentations at professional conferences and publications in a peer-reviewed journal.
Accurate assessment of tobacco smoke exposure is key to evaluate its effects. We sought to validate and establish cut-offs for self-reported smoking and secondhand smoke (SHS) exposure during pregnancy using urinary cotinine and 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(-3-pyridyl)-1-butanol (NNAL) in a large contemporary prospective study from the USA, with lower smoking prevalence than has previously been evaluated.
Prospective birth cohort.
Pregnancy clinics in New Hampshire and Vermont, USA.
1396 women enrolled in the New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study with self-reported smoking, urinary cotinine, NNAL and pregnancy outcomes.
Cut-offs for urinary cotinine and NNAL concentrations were estimated from logistic regression models using Youden’s method to predict SHS and active smoking. Cotinine and NNAL were each used as the exposure in separate multifactorial models for pregnancy outcomes.
Self-reported maternal smoking was: 72% non-smokers, 5.7% ex-smokers, 6.4% SHS exposure, 6.2% currently smoked, 10% unreported. Cotinine and NNAL levels were low and highly intercorrelated (r=0.91). Geometric mean cotinine, NNAL were 0.99 ng/mL, 0.05 pmol/mL, respectively. Cotinine cut-offs for SHS, current smoking were 1.2 ng/mL and 1.8 ng/mL (area under curve (AUC) 95% CI: 0.52 (0.47 to 0.57), 0.90 (0.85 to 0.94)). NNAL cut-off for current smoking was 0.09 pmol/mL (AUC=0.82 (95% CI 0.77 to 0.87)). Using cotinine and NNAL cut-offs combined gave similar AUC to cotinine alone, 0.87 (95% CI 0.82 to 0.91). Cotinine and NNAL gave almost identical effect estimates when modelling pregnancy outcomes.
In this population, we observed high concordance between self-complete questionnaire smoking data and urinary cotinine and NNAL. With respect to biomarkers, either cotinine or NNAL can be used as a measure of tobacco smoke exposure overall but only cotinine can be used to detect SHS.
Physical activity is important for healthy ageing. Despite strong evidence on the benefits of physical activity for health and well-being, physical inactivity remains a significant problem among older adults. This study aims to determine the feasibility and acceptability of implementing an online volunteer-led group exercise for older adults.
A quasi-experimental mixed-methods approach will be used in this study. A training programme will be developed to train volunteers to deliver online group exercises to older adults aged >65 years (n=30). The primary outcome is the feasibility of implementing the intervention. This will be assessed by the number of volunteers recruited, trained, and retained at the end of the study, and the number of exercise sessions delivered and completed by participants. Secondary outcomes include physical activity levels measured using the Community Health Model Activities Programme for Seniors questionnaire, Barthel Index, EQ-5D-5L as a measure of health-related quality of life, SARC-F to determine sarcopenia status, and PRIMSA-7 to determine frailty status. Outcomes will be measured at baseline and at 6 months.
Qualitative interviews will be conducted with volunteers(n=5), older adults (n=10) and family members (n=5) to explore their views on the intervention.
Simple descriptive statistics will be used to describe participant characteristics, the feasibility of the study and the impact of the intervention on health outcomes. Parametric(t-test) or non-parametric(Mann-Whitney U test) statistics will be used to analyse continuous variables. 2 test will be used for categorical variables. Qualitative data will be analysed using an inductive thematic analysis approach.
This study received ethical approval from the University of Southampton Faculty of Medicine Ethics Committee and Research Integrity and Governance committee (ID: 52 967 .A1). Study findings will be made available to service users, voluntary organisations and other researchers who may be interested in implementing the intervention.
Assessing the impact of COVID-19 policy is critical for informing future policies. However, there are concerns about the overall strength of COVID-19 impact evaluation studies given the circumstances for evaluation and concerns about the publication environment.
We included studies that were primarily designed to estimate the quantitative impact of one or more implemented COVID-19 policies on direct SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 outcomes. After searching PubMed for peer-reviewed articles published on 26 November 2020 or earlier and screening, all studies were reviewed by three reviewers first independently and then to consensus. The review tool was based on previously developed and released review guidance for COVID-19 policy impact evaluation.
After 102 articles were identified as potentially meeting inclusion criteria, we identified 36 published articles that evaluated the quantitative impact of COVID-19 policies on direct COVID-19 outcomes. Nine studies were set aside because the study design was considered inappropriate for COVID-19 policy impact evaluation (n=8 pre/post; n=1 cross-sectional), and 27 articles were given a full consensus assessment. 20/27 met criteria for graphical display of data, 5/27 for functional form, 19/27 for timing between policy implementation and impact, and only 3/27 for concurrent changes to the outcomes. Only 4/27 were rated as overall appropriate. Including the 9 studies set aside, reviewers found that only four of the 36 identified published and peer-reviewed health policy impact evaluation studies passed a set of key design checks for identifying the causal impact of policies on COVID-19 outcomes.
The reviewed literature directly evaluating the impact of COVID-19 policies largely failed to meet key design criteria for inference of sufficient rigour to be actionable by policy-makers. More reliable evidence review is needed to both identify and produce policy-actionable evidence, alongside the recognition that actionable evidence is often unlikely to be feasible.