Sample records for care improve survival

  1. Palliative Care Improves Survival, Quality of Life in Advanced Lung Cancer | Division of Cancer Prevention (United States)

    Results from the first randomized clinical trial of its kind have revealed a surprising and welcome benefit of early palliative care for patients with advanced lung cancer—longer median survival. Although several researchers said that the finding needs to be confirmed in other trials of patients with other cancer types, they were cautiously optimistic that the trial results could influence oncologists’ perceptions and use of palliative care. |

  2. Surviving sepsis in the critical care environment. (United States)

    Benedict, Lara


    The management of sepsis and septic shock in the intensive care environment is a complex task requiring the cooperation of a multidisciplinary team. The Surviving Sepsis Campaign provides systematic guidelines for the recognition, early intervention, and supportive management of sepsis. Critical care nurses are instrumental in ensuring that these guidelines and other sources of evidence-based practice are used for patients with severe sepsis or septic shock. This article discusses the pathophysiologic processes in severe sepsis and septic shock and discusses the appropriate interventions as recommended by the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. Recommended early treatments are reviewed along with interventions related to hemodynamics, perfusion, and supportive care in the critical care environment.

  3. Improving palliative care.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Moran, Sue


    Any service improvement project requires planning, action and evaluation. Using a recognised quality improvement framework can offer a structured approach to implementing and assessing changes to patient care. This article describes how use of the Deming Cycle has helped to identify nurses\\' learning needs.

  4. Improving Survival in Decompensated Cirrhosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amar Nath Mukerji


    Full Text Available Mortality in cirrhosis is consequent of decompensation, only treatment being timely liver transplantation. Organ allocation is prioritized for the sickest patients based on Model for End Stage Liver Disease (MELD score. In order to improve survival in patients with high MELD score it is imperative to preserve them in suitable condition till transplantation. Here we examine means to prolong life in high MELD score patients till a suitable liver is available. We specially emphasize protection of airways by avoidance of sedatives, avoidance of Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure, elective intubation in grade III or higher encephalopathy, maintaining a low threshold for intubation with lesser grades of encephalopathy when undergoing upper endoscopy or colonoscopy as pre transplant evaluation or transferring patient to a transplant center. Consider post-pyloric tube feeding in encephalopathy to maintain muscle mass and minimize risk of aspiration. In non intubated and well controlled encephalopathy, frequent physical mobility by active and passive exercises are recommended. When renal replacement therapy is needed, night-time Continuous Veno-Venous Hemodialysis may be useful in keeping the daytime free for mobility. Sparing and judicious use of steroids needs to be borne in mind in treatment of ARDS and acute hepatitis from alcohol or autoimmune process.

  5. Good adherence to HAART and improved survival in a community HIV/AIDS treatment and care programme: the experience of The AIDS Support Organization (TASO, Kampala, Uganda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalyango Joan N


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Poor adherence to highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART may result in treatment failure and death. Most reports of the effect of adherence to HAART on mortality come from studies where special efforts are made to provide HAART under ideal conditions. However, there are few reports of the impact of non-adherence to HAART on mortality from community HIV/AIDS treatment and care programmes in developing countries. We therefore conducted a study to assess the effect of adherence to HAART on survival in The AIDS Support Organization (TASO community HAART programme in Kampala, Uganda. Methods The study was a retrospective cohort of 897 patients who initiated HAART at TASO clinic, Kampala, between May 2004 and December 2006. A total of 7,856 adherence assessments were performed on the data. Adherence was assessed using a combination of self-report and pill count methods. Patients who took ≤ 95% of their regimens were classified as non-adherent. The data was stratified at a CD4 count of 50 cells/mm3. Kaplan Meier curves and Cox proportional hazards regression models were used in the analysis. Results A total of 701 (78.2% patients had a mean adherence to ART of > 95%. The crude death rate was 12.2 deaths per 100 patient-years, with a rate of 42.5 deaths per 100 patient-years for non-adherent patients and 6.1 deaths per 100 patient-years for adherent patients. Non-adherence to ART was significantly associated with mortality. Patients with a CD4 count of less than 50 cells/mm3 had a higher mortality (HR = 4.3; 95% CI: 2.22–5.56 compared to patients with a CD4 count equal to or greater than 50 cells/mm3 (HR = 2.4; 95% CI: 1.79–2.38. Conclusion Our study showed that good adherence and improved survival are feasible in community HIV/AIDS programmes such as that of TASO, Uganda. However, there is need to support community HAART programmes to overcome the challenges of funding to provide sustainable supplies particularly of

  6. Improving assisted living care. (United States)

    Gregory, Nancy; Gesell, Sabina B; Widmer, Tom


    In the absence of a national measurement system, private vendors of satisfaction measurement and improvement services have played a crucial role in the quality movement in the assisted living industry. Survey responses from 175 resident-family dyads at 20 facilities were analyzed to identify priorities for service improvement from the customers' perspective. They include improving care provided by aides and management, meal service, and activities. Practical solutions for addressing these issues are presented.

  7. Survival by Dialysis Modality-Who Cares? (United States)

    Lee, Martin B; Bargman, Joanne M


    In light of the recent emphasis on patient-centered outcomes and quality of life for patients with kidney disease, we contend that the nephrology community should no longer fund, perform, or publish studies that compare survival by dialysis modality. These studies have become redundant; they are methodologically limited, unhelpful in practice, and therefore a waste of resources. More than two decades of these publications show similar survival between patients undergoing peritoneal dialysis and those receiving thrice-weekly conventional hemodialysis, with differences only for specific subgroups. In clinical practice, modality choice should be individualized with the aim of maximizing quality of life, patient-reported outcomes, and achieving patient-centered goals. Expected survival is often irrelevant to modality choice. Even for the younger and fitter home hemodialysis population, quality of life, not just duration of survival, is a major priority. On the other hand, increasing evidence suggests that patients with ESRD continue to experience poor quality of life because of high symptom burden, unsolved clinical problems, and unmet needs. Patients care more about how they will live instead of how long. It is our responsibility to align our research with their needs. Only by doing so can we meet the challenges of ESRD patient care in the coming decades.

  8. Procalcitonin-guided interventions against infections to increase early appropriate antibiotics and improve survival in the intensive care unit: a randomized trial

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jens U; Hein, Lars; Lundgren, Bettina;


    For patients in intensive care units, sepsis is a common and potentially deadly complication and prompt initiation of appropriate antimicrobial therapy improves prognosis. The objective of this trial was to determine whether a strategy of antimicrobial spectrum escalation, guided by daily...

  9. Improved survival after rectal cancer in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bülow, S; Harling, H; Iversen, L H


    treated from 1994 to 2006. Method The study was based on the National Rectal Cancer Registry and the National Colorectal Cancer Database, supplemented with data from the Central Population Registry. The analysis included actuarial overall and relative survival. Results A total of 10 632 patients were......Objective In 1995, an analysis showed an inferior prognosis after rectal cancer in Denmark compared with the other Scandinavian countries. The Danish Colorectal Cancer Group (DCCG) was established with the aim of improving the prognosis, and in this study we present a survival analysis of patients...... operated on. The overall 5-year survival increased from 0.37 in 1994 to 0.51% in 2006; the improvement was greater in men (20% points) than in women (10% points), and greatest in stage III (20% points). The relative 5-year survival increased from 0.46 to 0.62, including an improvement of 23% points in men...

  10. Improved survival of children and adolescents with sickle cell disease. (United States)

    Quinn, Charles T; Rogers, Zora R; McCavit, Timothy L; Buchanan, George R


    The survival of young children with sickle cell disease (SCD) has improved, but less is known about older children and adolescents. We studied the Dallas Newborn Cohort (DNC) to estimate contemporary 18-year survival for newborns with SCD and document changes in the causes and ages of death over time. We also explored whether improvements in the quality of medical care were temporally associated with survival. The DNC now includes 940 subjects with 8857 patient-years of follow-up. Most children with sickle cell anemia (93.9%) and nearly all children with milder forms of SCD (98.4%) now live to become adults. The incidence of death and the pattern of mortality changed over the duration of the cohort. Sepsis is no longer the leading cause of death. All the recent deaths in the cohort occurred in patients 18 years or older, most shortly after the transition to adult care. Quality of care in the DNC has improved over time, with significantly more timely initial visits and preventive interventions for young children. In summary, most children with SCD now survive the childhood years, but young adults who transition to adult medical care are at high risk for early death.

  11. Improved wound care product

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    The present invention pertains to use of sodium diacetate (NaHAc 2) as an antimicrobial agent against bacteria growing in biofilms. The aspects of the invention include a wound care product comprising sodium diacetate, a kit comprising a wound care product,and a methodof treating an infected wound....

  12. Improving Physical Activity Ensures the Long-Term Survival of Pneumonia Patients in a Super-Aged Society: A Retrospective Study in an Acute-Care Hospital in Japan. (United States)

    Sato, Kei; Okada, Shinji; Sugawara, Ayumi; Tode, Naoki; Watanuki, Zenta; Suzuki, Kumiko; Ichinose, Masakazu


    Pneumonia is the third largest cause of death in Japan. Chest physicians have been struggling to improve the outcome of pneumonia treatment in acute care settings. However, a poor long-term prognosis after pneumonia has not been well recognized. Furthermore, the factors related to the poor prognosis, especially the possible involvement of senescence-related disability, have not been identified. In this study, long-term outcomes after discharge from hospital were retrospectively analyzed to identify factors related to the poor long-term prognosis. Outcomes of 958 pneumonia patients who were discharged from South Miyagi Medical Center (Miyagi, Japan) from June 1, 2008 to March 31, 2014 were determined through patient surveys or medical record reviews on September 26, 2014. Survival curves were constructed and compared according to various factors. Multivariate analysis revealed that all levels of decrease in physical activity, an age of 80 years old or more, the most severe status in Japanese Respiratory Society pneumonia severity grading system, the presence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and comorbid malignancy significantly reduced long-term survival. The effects of dementia, neuromuscular disease, heart disease, and nursing care residency on long-term survival were detected only with univariate analysis. Physical activity influenced the acute-phase and the long-term prognosis of pneumonia. This report provides information to assist physicians in giving better suggestions to disabled older patients when choosing pneumonia treatment options. In conclusion, we propose that death related to pneumonia can be prevented in the same way as non-communicable diseases by improving physical activity.

  13. Peripherally administered orexin improves survival of mice with endotoxin shock (United States)

    Ogawa, Yasuhiro; Irukayama-Tomobe, Yoko; Murakoshi, Nobuyuki; Kiyama, Maiko; Ishikawa, Yui; Hosokawa, Naoto; Tominaga, Hiromu; Uchida, Shuntaro; Kimura, Saki; Kanuka, Mika; Morita, Miho; Hamada, Michito; Takahashi, Satoru; Hayashi, Yu; Yanagisawa, Masashi


    Sepsis is a systemic inflammatory response to infection, accounting for the most common cause of death in intensive care units. Here, we report that peripheral administration of the hypothalamic neuropeptide orexin improves the survival of mice with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced endotoxin shock, a well-studied septic shock model. The effect is accompanied by a suppression of excessive cytokine production and an increase of catecholamines and corticosterone. We found that peripherally administered orexin penetrates the blood-brain barrier under endotoxin shock, and that central administration of orexin also suppresses the cytokine production and improves the survival, indicating orexin’s direct action in the central nervous system (CNS). Orexin helps restore body temperature and potentiates cardiovascular function in LPS-injected mice. Pleiotropic modulation of inflammatory response by orexin through the CNS may constitute a novel therapeutic approach for septic shock. DOI: PMID:28035899

  14. Survival strategies in the era of managed care. (United States)

    Rudomin, M L; Spirakes, A S


    The era of managed care has forced an unprecedented restructuring of the health care environment. As hospitals downsize in response, materiel managers should consider adopting strategies that may help ensure their survival, including innovative approaches to supply management and the development of individual responses that will best position them to succeed in this new reality.

  15. Orthogeriatric care: improving patient outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tarazona-Santabalbina FJ


    Full Text Available Francisco José Tarazona-Santabalbina,1,2 Ángel Belenguer-Varea,1,2 Eduardo Rovira,1,2 David Cuesta-Peredó1,21Geriatric Medicine Unit, Internal Medicine Department, Hospital Universitario de la Ribera, 2Medical School, Universidad Católica de Valencia San vicente Mártir, Valencia, SpainAbstract: Hip fractures are a very serious socio-economic problem in western countries. Since the 1950s, orthogeriatric units have introduced improvements in the care of geriatric patients admitted to hospital because of hip fractures. During this period, these units have reduced mean hospital stays, number of complications, and both in-hospital mortality and mortality over the middle term after hospital discharge, along with improvements in the quality of care and a reduction in costs. Likewise, a recent clinical trial has reported greater functional gains among the affected patients. Studies in this field have identified the prognostic factors present upon admission or manifesting themselves during admission and that increase the risk of patient mortality or disability. In addition, improved care afforded by orthogeriatric units has proved to reduce costs. Nevertheless, a number of management issues remain to be clarified, such as the optimum anesthetic, analgesic, and thromboprophylactic protocols; the type of diagnostic and therapeutic approach best suited to patients with cognitive problems; or the efficiency of the programs used in convalescence units or in home rehabilitation care. Randomized clinical trials are needed to consolidate the evidence in this regard. Keywords: hip fractures, geriatric assessment, orthogeriatric care, recovery of function, mortality

  16. Changing incidence and improved survival of gliomas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ho, Vincent K. Y.; Reijneveld, Jaap C.; Enting, Roeline; Bienfait, Henri P.; Robe, Pierre; Baumert, Brigitta G.; Visser, Otto


    BACKGROUND: Tumours of the central nervous system (CNS) represent a relatively rare but serious health burden. This study provides insight into the incidence and survival patterns of gliomas in the Netherlands diagnosed in adult patients during the time period 1989-2010, with a focus on glioblastoma

  17. Association Between the Safe Delivery App and Quality of Care and Perinatal Survival in Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Stine; Boas, Ida Marie; Bedesa, Tariku


    facilities. Analyses were performed based on the intention-to-treat principle. Interventions: Health care workers in intervention facilities received a smartphone with the SDA. The SDA is a training tool in emergency obstetric and neonatal care that uses visual guidance in animated videos with clinical......Importance: Health apps in low-income countries are emerging tools with the potential to improve quality of health care services, but few apps undergo rigorous scientific evaluation. Objective: To determine the effects of the safe delivery app (SDA) on perinatal survival and on health care workers......’ knowledge and skills in neonatal resuscitation. Design, Setting, and Participants: In a cluster-randomized clinical trial in 5 rural districts of Ethiopia, 73 health care facilities were randomized to the mobile phone intervention or to standard care (control). From September 1, 2013, to February 1, 2015...

  18. Uniform guidelines improve client care. (United States)

    Barnett, B


    Uniform national guidelines on the delivery of family planning methods and services improve client care, assuming these guidelines are based on current scientific information. Compliance with these guidelines yields safe and efficient delivery of family planning services. Service providers need information, training, supplies, and guidelines to deliver quality services. Guidelines contribute to consistency among family planning programs in different settings. Even though clinics may not provide the same services, the guidelines allow them to provide the same standards of care. Specifically, eligibility criteria, contraindications, and follow-up schedules are the same regardless of the service delivery point. Various international health organizations (such as World Health Organization, USAID, Program for International Training in Health, International Planned Parenthood Federation, and Association for Voluntary Surgical Contraception) have developed guidelines for family planning service delivery. Governments can use these documents to develop national family planning guidelines and policies. They should adapt the guidelines to local needs and consider program resources. After development of the national guidelines, training, workshops, and dissemination of written materials should be provided for policymakers, physicians, nurses, and other health providers. Countries that have either developed or are working to draft their own national guidelines are Cameroon, Ghana, Mexico, and Nepal.

  19. Mobile phones improve antenatal care attendance in Zanzibar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Stine; Nielsen, Birgitte B; Hemed, Maryam;


    BACKGROUND: Applying mobile phones in healthcare is increasingly prioritized to strengthen healthcare systems. Antenatal care has the potential to reduce maternal morbidity and improve newborns' survival but this benefit may not be realized in sub-Saharan Africa where the attendance and quality o...

  20. Improving Customer Service in Elderly Care


    Nielsen, Chris


    The elderly care sector is increasingly facing more competition and demanding customers. This leads to a growing pressure on elderly care home providers to find new and improved solutions that will enhance their level of customer service. The will ensure that the elderly service provider is remaining competitive in the elderly care service marketplace. The purpose of this thesis is to identify areas for improvements and propose implementable solutions for enhancing the elderly care custom...

  1. Eribulin Improves Survival of Women with Metastatic Breast Cancer (United States)

    Treatment with eribulin (Halaven™) improved overall survival in women with metastatic breast cancer whose disease progressed despite multiple rounds of prior chemotherapy, according to the results of a phase III clinical trial called EMBRACE.

  2. Paternal care decreases foraging activity and body condition, but does not impose survival costs to caring males in a Neotropical arachnid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gustavo S Requena

    Full Text Available Exclusive paternal care is the rarest form of parental investment in nature and theory predicts that the maintenance of this behavior depends on the balance between costs and benefits to males. Our goal was to assess costs of paternal care in the harvestman Iporangaia pustulosa, for which the benefits of this behavior in terms of egg survival have already been demonstrated. We evaluated energetic costs and mortality risks associated to paternal egg-guarding in the field. We quantified foraging activity of males and estimated how their body condition is influenced by the duration of the caring period. Additionally, we conducted a one-year capture-mark-recapture study and estimated apparent survival probabilities of caring and non-caring males to assess potential survival costs of paternal care. Our results indicate that caring males forage less frequently than non-caring individuals (males and females and that their body condition deteriorates over the course of the caring period. Thus, males willing to guard eggs may provide to females a fitness-enhancing gift of cost-free care of their offspring. Caring males, however, did not show lower survival probabilities when compared to both non-caring males and females. Reduction in mortality risks as a result of remaining stationary, combined with the benefits of improving egg survival, may have played an important and previously unsuspected role favoring the evolution of paternal care. Moreover, males exhibiting paternal care could also provide an honest signal of their quality as offspring defenders, and thus female preference for caring males could be responsible for maintaining the trait.

  3. Focus on quality of life, improve the patients' survival The 7th Conference of Chinese Cancer Rehabilitation and Palliative Care was held in Fuzhou, China%关注生活质量,改善患者生存——榕城举办第六届中国癌症康复与姑息医学大会

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yi Cheng


    @@ From Nov.25th–27th, 2011, the 7th Conference of experts and clinicians participated in the conference, in-Chinese Cancer Rehabilitation and Palliative Care was cluding the civil servants of Ministry of Health, doctors, held in Fuzhou, China.The conference focused on the nurses and social workers.patients' quality of life, and the methods to improve their The opening ceremony was held in the evening of Nov.survival.The comprehensive therapy should be consid-25th.On the ceremony, some experts read poetry about ered at the beginning of the treatment, and the treatment the rehabilitation and palliative care.The poetry showed of rehabilitation and palliative care should be pursued the importance of rehabilitation and palliative care, the throughout all the anti-cancer therapeutic process.hope given to the patients and the decent life provided

  4. African primary care research: Quality improvement cycles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Van Deventer


    Full Text Available Improving the quality of clinical care and translating evidence into clinical practice is commonly a focus of primary care research. This article is part of a series on primary care research and outlines an approach to performing a quality improvement cycle as part of a research assignment at a Masters level. The article aims to help researchers design their quality improvement cycle and write their research project proposal.

  5. African primary care research: quality improvement cycles. (United States)

    van Deventer, Claire; Mash, Bob


    Improving the quality of clinical care and translating evidence into clinical practice is commonly a focus of primary care research. This article is part of a series on primary care research and outlines an approach to performing a quality improvement cycle as part of a research assignment at a Masters level. The article aims to help researchers design their quality improvement cycle and write their research project proposal.

  6. Mobile technology: streamlining practice and improving care


    Blake, Holly


    The use of mobile phones in care delivery has the potential to improve the way in which care is delivered. When implemented effectively, mobile technologies can empower patients and enhance communication between patients and their health-care providers. When barriers are recognised and addressed, mobile technologies can change working lives, facilitating rapid access to information and supporting efficiency in practice.

  7. Prehospital Care of Burn Patients and Trajectories on Survival. (United States)

    Kallinen, Outi; Koljonen, Virve; Tukiainen, Erkki; Randell, Tarja; Kirves, Hetti


    We sought to identify factors associated with the prognosis and survival of burn patients by analyzing data related to the prehospital treatment of burn patients transferred directly to the burn unit from the accident site. We also aimed to assess the role of prehospital physicians and paramedics providing care to major burn patients. This study included adult burn patients with severe burns treated between 2006 and 2010. Prehospital patient records and clinical data collected during treatment were analyzed, and the Injury Severity Scale (ISS) was calculated. Patients were grouped into two cohorts based on the presence or absence of a physician during the prehospital phase. Data were analyzed with reference to survival by multivariable regression model. Specific inclusion criteria resulted in a sample of 67 patients. The groups were comparable with regard to age, gender, and injury etiology. Patients treated by prehospital physicians (group 1, n = 49) were more severely injured than patients treated by paramedics (group 2, n = 18) in terms of total burn surface area (%TBSA) (32% vs. 17%, p = 0.033), ISS (25 vs. 8, p prehospital prognostic factors affecting patient outcomes. Based on the results from this study, our current EMS system is capable of identifying seriously injured burn patients who may benefit from physician attendance at the injury scene.

  8. Impact of collaborative care on survival time for dogs with congestive heart failure and revenue for attending primary care veterinarians. (United States)

    Lefbom, Bonnie K; Peckens, Neal K


    OBJECTIVE To assess the effects of in-person collaborative care by primary care veterinarians (pcDVMs) and board-certified veterinary cardiologists (BCVCs) on survival time of dogs after onset of congestive heart failure (CHF) and on associated revenue for the attending pcDVMs. DESIGN Retrospective cohort study. ANIMALS 26 small-breed dogs treated for naturally occurring CHF secondary to myxomatous mitral valve disease at a multilocation primary care veterinary hospital between 2008 and 2013. PROCEDURES Electronic medical records were reviewed to identify dogs with confirmed CHF secondary to myxomatous mitral valve disease and collect information on patient care, survival time, and pcDVM revenue. Data were compared between dogs that received collaborative care from the pcDVM and a BCVC and dogs that received care from the pcDVM alone. RESULTS Dogs that received collaborative care had a longer median survival time (254 days) than did dogs that received care from the pcDVM alone (146 days). A significant positive correlation was identified between pcDVM revenue and survival time for dogs that received collaborative care (ie, the longer the dog survived, the greater the pcDVM revenue generated from caring for that patient). CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Findings suggested that collaborative care provided to small-breed dogs with CHF by a BCVC and pcDVM could result in survival benefits for affected dogs and increased revenue for pcDVMs, compared with care provided by a pcDVM alone.

  9. Can health care teams improve primary care practice? (United States)

    Grumbach, Kevin; Bodenheimer, Thomas


    In health care settings, individuals from different disciplines come together to care for patients. Although these groups of health care personnel are generally called teams, they need to earn true team status by demonstrating teamwork. Developing health care teams requires attention to 2 central questions: who is on the team and how do team members work together? This article chiefly focuses on the second question. Cohesive health care teams have 5 key characteristics: clear goals with measurable outcomes, clinical and administrative systems, division of labor, training of all team members, and effective communication. Two organizations are described that demonstrate these components: a private primary care practice in Bangor, Me, and Kaiser Permanente's Georgia region primary care sites. Research on patient care teams suggests that teams with greater cohesiveness are associated with better clinical outcome measures and higher patient satisfaction. In addition, medical settings in which physicians and nonphysician professionals work together as teams can demonstrate improved patient outcomes. A number of barriers to team formation exist, chiefly related to the challenges of human relationships and personalities. Taking small steps toward team development may improve the work environment in primary care practices.

  10. Lung Cancer Survival Improvement through Surgical Intervention in PUMCH Hospital

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GUO Feng; ZHANG Zhiyong; CUI Yushang; LI Shanqing; LI Li; XU Xiaohui; GE Feng; GUO Huiqin; LI Zejian


    Objective: To investigate and evaluate improvement of lung cancer survival after surgical intervention in PUMC hospital during the last 15 years. Methods: From January 1989 to December 2003, 1574 lung cancer cases underwent surgical treatment and followed up. All cases in this series were divided into two groups according to time period: group A (1999-2003) and group B (1989-1998). The difference in the survival rate between groups A and B was compared. Results: The morbidity and mortality in group A was decreased significantly in comparison to group B (11.2% vs. 19.2%, 1.06% vs. 1.93%, respectively).However, the 3-year and 5-year survival rate was increased from 42.35% to 56.07%, and from 28.46% to38.99%, respectively. A significant improvement in survival was observed in patients with stage Ⅰ, Ⅱ and ⅢA, but not in those with stage ⅢB and Ⅳ. Also, patients with lobectomy had more satisfactory results than those receiving exploratory thoracotomy, limited resection, pneumonectomy and sleeve resection. Conclusion: Lobectomy plus systematic mediastinal lymph nodes dissection has become the standard mode for resectable lung cancer. Combination of complete resection along with lymph nodal dissection, and postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy based on platinum/3rd generation chemotherapy medicine, has preliminarily been justified, proving an important approach for effective improvement in long-term survival of non-small cell lung carcinoma.

  11. Home Care Nursing Improves Cancer Symptom Management (United States)

    Home care nursing (HCN) improves the management of symptoms in breast and colorectal cancer patients who take the oral chemotherapy drug capecitabine, according to a study published online November 16 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

  12. Nationwide quality improvement in lung cancer care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, Erik Winther; Green, Anders; Oesterlind, Kell


    To improve prognosis and quality of lung cancer care the Danish Lung Cancer Group has developed a strategy consisting of national clinical guidelines and a clinical quality and research database. The first edition of our guidelines was published in 1998 and our national lung cancer registry...... was opened for registrations in 2000. This article describes methods and results obtained by multidisciplinary collaboration and illustrates how quality of lung cancer care can be improved by establishing and monitoring result and process indicators....

  13. Telementoring Primary Care Clinicians to Improve Geriatric Mental Health Care. (United States)

    Fisher, Elisa; Hasselberg, Michael; Conwell, Yeates; Weiss, Linda; Padrón, Norma A; Tiernan, Erin; Karuza, Jurgis; Donath, Jeremy; Pagán, José A


    Health care delivery and payment systems are moving rapidly toward value-based care. To be successful in this new environment, providers must consistently deliver high-quality, evidence-based, and coordinated care to patients. This study assesses whether Project ECHO(®) (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) GEMH (geriatric mental health)-a remote learning and mentoring program-is an effective strategy to address geriatric mental health challenges in rural and underserved communities. Thirty-three teleECHO clinic sessions connecting a team of specialists to 54 primary care and case management spoke sites (approximately 154 participants) were conducted in 10 New York counties from late 2014 to early 2016. The curriculum consisted of case presentations and didactic lessons on best practices related to geriatric mental health care. Twenty-six interviews with program participants were conducted to explore changes in geriatric mental health care knowledge and treatment practices. Health insurance claims data were analyzed to assess changes in health care utilization and costs before and after program implementation. Findings from interviews suggest that the program led to improvements in clinician geriatric mental health care knowledge and treatment practices. Claims data analysis suggests that emergency room costs decreased for patients with mental health diagnoses. Patients without a mental health diagnosis had more outpatient visits and higher prescription and outpatient costs. Telementoring programs such as Project ECHO GEMH may effectively build the capacity of frontline clinicians to deliver high-quality, evidence-based care to older adults with mental health conditions and may contribute to the transformation of health care delivery systems from volume to value.

  14. Improvement in initial survival of spinal injuries: a 10-year audit. (United States)

    Tan, H B; Sloan, J P; Barlow, I F


    A 10-year retrospective study of all spinal injuries presenting to the Leeds Teaching Hospitals between 1991 and 2001. The hospitals provide secondary care to a population of 750,000 and tertiary care to a population of 2-3 million. In total 1119 spinal injuries were studied. The overall survival rate was 89%. The commonest age group for presentation was 25-29 years with a secondary peak in the seventh decade, a mean overall of 43 years. 66% of injuries occurred in males. The commonest cause was a fall from a height (44%), with road traffic accidents (RTA) causing 43%. Pedestrians were most at risk within the road traffic group, making up 63% of cases. Isolated cervical spine injuries made up 37% of all cases. Cervical fractures were most associated with neurological injury (50%). Immediate survival has increased over the decade from 83% in 1991 to 93% in 2001. The probability of survival was significant at P = 0.006 and actual survival at P = 0.012 (Pearson correlation). The causal analysis has not been carried out but it is thought likely that improved quality of care is responsible.

  15. Quality of life before intensive care unit admission is a predictor of survival

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.G.M. Hofhuis (Jose); P.E. Spronk (Peter); H.F. van Stel (Henk); A.J.P. Schrijvers (Augustinus); J. Bakker (Jan)


    textabstractIntroduction: Predicting whether a critically ill patient will survive intensive care treatment remains difficult. The advantages of a validated strategy to identify those patients who will not benefit from intensive care unit (ICU) treatment are evident. Providing critical care treatmen

  16. Will male advertisement be a reliable indicator of paternal care, if offspring survival depends on male care? (United States)

    Kelly, Natasha B; Alonzo, Suzanne H


    Existing theory predicts that male signalling can be an unreliable indicator of paternal care, but assumes that males with high levels of mating success can have high current reproductive success, without providing any parental care. As a result, this theory does not hold for the many species where offspring survival depends on male parental care. We modelled male allocation of resources between advertisement and care for species with male care where males vary in quality, and the effect of care and advertisement on male fitness is multiplicative rather than additive. Our model predicts that males will allocate proportionally more of their resources to whichever trait (advertisement or paternal care) is more fitness limiting. In contrast to previous theory, we find that male advertisement is always a reliable indicator of paternal care and male phenotypic quality (e.g. males with higher levels of advertisement never allocate less to care than males with lower levels of advertisement). Our model shows that the predicted pattern of male allocation and the reliability of male signalling depend very strongly on whether paternal care is assumed to be necessary for offspring survival and how male care affects offspring survival and male fitness.

  17. Improving Care for Children With Complex Needs (United States)


    Medically Complex Children; Care Coordination; Case Manager; Care Manager; Collaborative Care; Disease Management; Patient Care Team or Organization; Managed Care; Children With Chronic Conditions; Children With Special Health Care Needs; Shared Care Plan; Patient Care Plan; Health Care and Resource Utilization; Adherence to Care; Functional Status and Productivity; Health Related Quality of Life; Satisfaction With Care; Care Coordinator; Family Experience of Care; Quality Health Care

  18. Kaempferol and Chrysin Synergies to Improve Septic Mice Survival. (United States)

    Harasstani, Omar A; Tham, Chau Ling; Israf, Daud A


    Previously, we reported the role of synergy between two flavonoids-namely, chrysin and kaempferol-in inhibiting the secretion of a few major proinflammatory mediators such as tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), prostaglandin E₂ (PGE₂), and nitric oxide (NO) from lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced RAW 264.7 cells. The present study aims to evaluate the effects of this combination on a murine model of polymicrobial sepsis induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). Severe sepsis was induced in male ICR mice (n = 7) via the CLP procedure. The effects of chrysin and kaempferol combination treatment on septic mice were investigated using a 7-day survival study. The levels of key proinflammatory mediators and markers-such as aspartate aminotransferase (AST), TNF-α, and NO-in the sera samples of the septic mice were determined via ELISA and fluorescence determination at different time point intervals post-CLP challenge. Liver tissue samples from septic mice were harvested to measure myeloperoxidase (MPO) levels using a spectrophotometer. Moreover, intraperitoneal fluid (IPF) bacterial clearance and total leukocyte count were also assessed to detect any antibacterial effects exerted by chrysin and kaempferol, individually and in combination. Kaempferol treatment improved the survival rate of CLP-challenged mice by up to 16%. During this treatment, kaempferol expressed antibacterial, antiapoptotic and antioxidant activities through the attenuation of bacterial forming units, AST and NO levels, and increased polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMN) count in the IPF. On the other hand, the chrysin treatment significantly reduced serum TNF-α levels. However, it failed to significantly improve the survival rate of the CLP-challenged mice. Subsequently, the kaempferol/chrysin combination treatment significantly improved the overall 7-day survival rate by 2-fold-up to 29%. Kaempferol and chrysin revealed some synergistic effects by acting individually upon multiple

  19. Improving educational preparation for transcultural health care. (United States)

    Le Var, R M


    There is increasing evidence that the health care needs of people from black and ethnic minority groups in England are not being met. A growing number of initiatives are being undertaken to remedy the situation. Many of them are focused on health care delivery at local and national levels. However, unless the preparation of health care professionals in the area of multi-cultural health care is appropriate and effective, a great deal of corrective action will continue to have to be taken. Despite 1997 having been the European Year Against Racism, it is still necessary to consider what educational preparation should be like. The article draws on identified inadequacies in health care provision as well as examples of initiatives taken to improve care provision. The author identifies deficiencies in educational preparation and proposes a range of actions to be taken. The article is focused on nursing, midwifery and health visiting education in England, but is deemed to be relevant to all health care professionals not only in Europe but other continents, as they become increasingly international and multi-ethnic.

  20. Combining gene signatures improves prediction of breast cancer survival.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xi Zhao

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Several gene sets for prediction of breast cancer survival have been derived from whole-genome mRNA expression profiles. Here, we develop a statistical framework to explore whether combination of the information from such sets may improve prediction of recurrence and breast cancer specific death in early-stage breast cancers. Microarray data from two clinically similar cohorts of breast cancer patients are used as training (n = 123 and test set (n = 81, respectively. Gene sets from eleven previously published gene signatures are included in the study. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To investigate the relationship between breast cancer survival and gene expression on a particular gene set, a Cox proportional hazards model is applied using partial likelihood regression with an L2 penalty to avoid overfitting and using cross-validation to determine the penalty weight. The fitted models are applied to an independent test set to obtain a predicted risk for each individual and each gene set. Hierarchical clustering of the test individuals on the basis of the vector of predicted risks results in two clusters with distinct clinical characteristics in terms of the distribution of molecular subtypes, ER, PR status, TP53 mutation status and histological grade category, and associated with significantly different survival probabilities (recurrence: p = 0.005; breast cancer death: p = 0.014. Finally, principal components analysis of the gene signatures is used to derive combined predictors used to fit a new Cox model. This model classifies test individuals into two risk groups with distinct survival characteristics (recurrence: p = 0.003; breast cancer death: p = 0.001. The latter classifier outperforms all the individual gene signatures, as well as Cox models based on traditional clinical parameters and the Adjuvant! Online for survival prediction. CONCLUSION: Combining the predictive strength of multiple gene signatures improves

  1. Sampling considerations for health care improvement. (United States)

    Perla, Rocco J; Provost, Lloyd P; Murray, Sandra K


    Sampling in improvement work can pose challenges. How is it different from the sampling strategies many use with research, clinical trials, or regulatory programs? What should improvement teams consider when determining a useful approach to sampling and a useful sample size? The aim of this article is to introduce some of the concepts related to sampling for improvement. We give specific guidance related to determining a useful sample size to a wider health care audience so that it can be applied to improvement projects in hospitals and health systems.

  2. Improving trauma care in Trinidad and Tobago. (United States)

    Adam, R; Stedman, M; Winn, J; Howard, M; Williams, J I; Ali, J


    Identification of trauma as a major cause of morbidity and mortality in Trinidad and Tobago prompted the establishment of a training programme aimed at improving trauma care in this developing country. An Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) programme for physicians, funded through the Canadian International Development Agency resulted in a statistically significant improvement of in-hospital trauma patient outcome at the Port-of-Spain General Hospital (observed to expected mortality ratio of 3.16 pre-ATLS compared to 1.94 post-ATLS). A recent analysis of all motor vehicle injuries for a shorter period did not confirm this positive impact of the ATLS programme, primarily because a large number of these patients died in the pre-hospital period. Pre-hospital trauma care therefore required urgent attention to complement the positive in-hospital impact of the ATLS programme. A second training programme (the Pre-Hospital Trauma Life Support or PHTLS) for paramedical personnel was thus instituted in 1990. Over 250 physicians have been trained in the ATLS programme and to date over 100 paramedical personnel have been trained in the PHTLS programme. Attempts have also been made to equip the ambulances with more appropriate resuscitative devices in order to improve pre-hospital care. The combination of the PHTLS and the ATLS programme should result in further improvement in the care of patients sustaining major injuries in Trinidad and Tobago.

  3. Improvement in perinatal care for extremely premature infants in Denmark from 1994 to 2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hasselager, Asbjørn Børch; Børch, Klaus; Pryds, Ole Axel


    PVL) and intraventricular haemorrhage grade 3-4 (IVH 3-4). RESULTS: A total of 184, 83 and 127 infants were included from the cohorts. Delivery rates at level 3 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) hospitals increased from 69% to 87%. Transfer rates to level 3 NICU almost doubled during the period. Survival rates were......INTRODUCTION: Major advances in perinatal care over the latest decades have increased the survival rate of extremely premature infants. Centralisation of perinatal care was implemented in Denmark from 1995. This study evaluates the effect of organisational changes of perinatal care on survival...... gestational age and administration of surfactant. CONCLUSIONS: Centralisation of treatment of extremely premature infants has been implemented because more children are being born at highly specialised perinatal centres. Care improved as more infants received evidence-based treatment. IVH 3-4 rates declined...

  4. Radiotherapy Improves Survival in Unresected Stage I-III Bronchoalveolar Carcinoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Urban, Damien [Department of Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Ramat Gan (Israel); Mishra, Mark [Department of Radiation Oncology, Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (United States); Onn, Amir [Department of Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Ramat Gan (Israel); Dicker, Adam P. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (United States); Symon, Zvi; Pfeffer, M. Raphael [Department of Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Ramat Gan (Israel); Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv (Israel); Lawrence, Yaacov Richard, E-mail: [Department of Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Ramat Gan (Israel); Department of Radiation Oncology, Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (United States); Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv (Israel)


    Purpose: To test the hypothesis that radiotherapy (RT) improves the outcome of patients with unresected, nonmetastatic bronchoalveolar carcinoma (BAC) by performing a population-based analysis within the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) registry. Methods and Materials: Inclusion criteria were as follows: patients diagnosed with BAC, Stage I-III, between 2001 and 2007. Exclusion criteria included unknown stage, unknown primary treatment modality, Stage IV disease, and those diagnosed at autopsy. Demographic data, treatment details, and overall survival were retrieved from the SEER database. Survival was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method and log-rank test. Results: A total of 6933 patients with Stage I-III BAC were included in the analysis. The median age at diagnosis was 70 years (range, 10-101 years). The majority of patients were diagnosed with Stage I (74.4%); 968 patients (14%) did not undergo surgical resection. Unresected patients were more likely to be older (p < 0.0001), male (p = 0.001), black (p < 0.0001), and Stage III (p < 0.0001). Within the cohort of unresected patients, 300 (31%) were treated with RT. The estimated 2-year overall survival for patients with unresected, nonmetastatic BAC was 58%, 44%, and 27% in Stage I, II, and III, respectively. Factors associated with improved survival included female sex, earlier stage at diagnosis, and use of RT. Median survival in those not receiving RT vs. receiving RT was as follows: Stage I, 28 months vs. 33 months (n = 364, p = 0.06); Stage II, 18 months vs. not reached (n = 31, nonsignificant); Stage III, 10 months vs. 17 months (n = 517, p < 0.003). Conclusions: The use of RT is associated with improved prognosis in unresected Stage I-III BAC. Less than a third of patients who could have potentially benefited from RT received it, suggesting that the medical specialists involved in the care of these patients underappreciate the importance of RT.

  5. Health care quality improvement publication trends. (United States)

    Sun, Gordon H; MacEachern, Mark P; Perla, Rocco J; Gaines, Jean M; Davis, Matthew M; Shrank, William H


    To analyze the extent of academic interest in quality improvement (QI) initiatives in medical practice, annual publication trends for the most well-known QI methodologies being used in health care settings were analyzed. A total of 10 key medical- and business-oriented library databases were examined: PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, ISI Web of Science, Scopus, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, ABI/INFORM, and Business Source Complete. A total of 13 057 articles were identified that discuss at least 1 of 10 well-known QI concepts used in health care contexts, 8645 (66.2%) of which were classified as original research. "Total quality management" was the only methodology to demonstrate a significant decline in publication over time. "Continuous quality improvement" was the most common topic of study across all publication years, whereas articles discussing Lean methodology demonstrated the largest growth in publication volume over the past 2 decades. Health care QI publication volume increased substantially beginning in 1991.

  6. An electronic dashboard to improve nursing care. (United States)

    Tan, Yung-Ming; Hii, Joshua; Chan, Katherine; Sardual, Robert; Mah, Benjamin


    With the introduction of CPOE systems, nurses in a Singapore hospital were facing difficulties monitoring key patient information such as critical tasks and alerts. Issues include unfriendly user interfaces of clinical systems, information overload, and the loss of visual cues for action due to paperless workflows. The hospital decided to implement an interactive electronic dashboard on top of their CPOE system to improve visibility of vital patient data. A post-implementation survey was performed to gather end-user feedback and evaluate factors that influence user satisfaction of the dashboard. Questionnaires were sent to all nurses of five pilot wards. 106 valid responses were received. User adoption was good with 86% of nurses using the dashboard every shift. Mean satisfaction score was 3.6 out of 5. User satisfaction was strongly and positively correlated to the system's perceived impact on work efficiency and care quality. From qualitative feedback, nurses generally agreed that the dashboard had improved their awareness of critical patient issues without the hassle of navigating a CPOE system. This study shows that an interactive clinical dashboard when properly integrated with a CPOE system could be a useful tool to improve daily patient care.

  7. What follows survival of critical illness? Physical therapists' management of patients with post-intensive care syndrome. (United States)

    Bemis-Dougherty, Anita R; Smith, James M


    Historically, the management of patients in the intensive care unit (ICU) has involved immobilization and sedation, with care focused on physiological impairments and survival. Because more ICU patients are now surviving their hospital stay, it is imperative that their ICU care be managed with the goal of long-term health, wellness, and functioning. The evidence confirms that mobilization and exercise are feasible in the ICU and demonstrates that the benefits of early mobilization include reduced length of stay in the ICU and hospital. In 2010, the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) invited key stakeholder groups, including the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), to identify strategies to improve long-term consequences following ICU discharge, including early mobilization in the ICU and integration of the physical therapist as a member of the ICU team. This model appears to be successful in some institutions, but there is variation among institutions. The SCCM Task Force developed major areas of focus that require multidisciplinary action to improve long-term outcomes after discharge from an ICU. This article describes physical therapist practice in the management of ICU survivors, the importance of long-term follow-up after ICU discharge, and how APTA is taking steps to address the major areas of focus identified by the SCCM Task Force to improve long-term outcomes after ICU discharge.

  8. Judgment sampling: a health care improvement perspective. (United States)

    Perla, Rocco J; Provost, Lloyd P


    Sampling plays a major role in quality improvement work. Random sampling (assumed by most traditional statistical methods) is the exception in improvement situations. In most cases, some type of "judgment sample" is used to collect data from a system. Unfortunately, judgment sampling is not well understood. Judgment sampling relies upon those with process and subject matter knowledge to select useful samples for learning about process performance and the impact of changes over time. It many cases, where the goal is to learn about or improve a specific process or system, judgment samples are not merely the most convenient and economical approach, they are technically and conceptually the most appropriate approach. This is because improvement work is done in the real world in complex situations involving specific areas of concern and focus; in these situations, the assumptions of classical measurement theory neither can be met nor should an attempt be made to meet them. The purpose of this article is to describe judgment sampling and its importance in quality improvement work and studies with a focus on health care settings.

  9. Strengthening Nursing Education To Improve End-of-life Care. (United States)

    Ferrell, Betty R.; Virani, Rose; Grant, Marcia


    As the members of the health care team who spend the most time with patients who are facing death, nurses are aware of the need for improved end-of-life (EOL) care and have identified resources to achieve that goal by improving education. A survey of 725 nursing faculty and state boards indicates an awareness of the need for improved EOL care and…

  10. Addition of gemtuzumab ozogamicin to induction chemotherapy improves survival in older patients with acute myeloid leukemia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burnett, Alan K; Russell, Nigel H; Hills, Robert K


    PURPOSE There has been little survival improvement in older patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in the last two decades. Improving induction treatment may improve the rate and quality of remission and consequently survival. In our previous trial, in younger patients, we showed improved sur...

  11. Preoperative Chemotherapy, Radiation Improve Survival in Esophageal Cancer (Updated) (United States)

    Patients with esophageal cancer who received chemotherapy and radiation before surgery survived, on average, nearly twice as long as patients treated with surgery alone, according to results of a randomized clinical trial published May 31, 2012, in NEJM.

  12. Improving survival among Brazilian children with perinatally-acquired AIDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiza Harunari Matida


    Full Text Available Brazil was the first developing country to provide free, universal access to antiretroviral treatment for AIDS patients. The Brazilian experience thus provides the first evidence regarding the impact of such treatment on the survival of perinatally acquired AIDS cases in the developing world. MATERIAL AND METHODS: This retrospective cohort study used medical record reviews to examine characteristics and trends in the survival of a representative sample of 914 perinatally acquired AIDS cases in 10 Brazilian cities diagnosed between 1983 and 1998. RESULTS: Survival time increased steadily and substantially. Whereas half of the children died within 20 months of diagnosis at the beginning of the epidemic, 75% of children diagnosed in 1997 and 1998 were still alive after four years of follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Advances in management and treatment have made a great difference in the survival of Brazilian children with AIDS. These results argue strongly for making such treatment available to children in the entire developing world.

  13. Specialized care and survival of ovarian cancer patients in The Netherlands: Nationwide cohort study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F. Vernooij (Flora); A.P.M. Heintz (Peter); P.O. Witteveen (Petronella); M. van der Heiden-Van der Loo (Margriet); J.W.W. Coebergh (Jan Willem); Y. van der Graaf (Yolanda)


    textabstractBackground: There is much debate on the necessity of regionalization of ovarian cancer care. We investigated the association between hospital type and survival of patients with ovarian cancer in The Netherlands. Methods: A retrospective, population-based cohort study was performed on all

  14. Structuring diabetes care in general practices: many improvements, remaining challenges.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Jennings, S


    BACKGROUND: For people with type 2 diabetes to enjoy improved longevity and quality of life, care needs to be organised in a systematic way. AIM: To test if processes and intermediate outcomes for patients with type 2 diabetes changed with the move to structured care in general practice shared with secondary care. METHODS: An audit of process and intermediate outcomes for patients with type 2 diabetes before and after the change to structured care in 10 Dublin general practices shared with secondary care four years on. RESULTS: Structured diabetes care in general practice has led to more dedicated clinics improved processes of care and increased access to multidisciplinary expertise. Improvement in blood pressure control, the use of aspirin and the use of lipid lowering agents indicate a significant decrease in absolute risk of vascular events for this population. CONCLUSIONS: Structured care in general practice improves intermediate outcomes for people with type 2 diabetes. Further improvements need to be made to reach international targets.

  15. The importance of regional availability of health care for old age survival - Findings from German reunification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vogt, Tobias C; Vaupel, James W


    BACKGROUND: This article investigates the importance of regional health care availability for old age survival. Using German reunification as a natural experiment, we show that spatial variation in health care in East Germany considerably influenced the convergence of East German life expectancy...... at older ages were first seen in towns with university hospitals, where state-of-the-art services became available first. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that the modernization of the health care system had a substantial effect on old-age life expectancy and helped to significantly reduce circulatory...

  16. Improved survival and renal prognosis of patients with type 2 diabetes and nephropathy with improved control of risk factors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andrésdóttir, Gudbjörg; Jensen, Majken; Carstensen, Bendix


    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate long-term survival, development of renal end points, and decline in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in patients with type 2 diabetes and diabetic nephropathy (DN) after renin-angiotensin system (RAS) inhibition and multifactorial treatment of cardiovascular risk factors have...... and lower GFR were predictors of mortality, whereas albuminuria, HbA1c, and low GFR predicted ESRD. CONCLUSIONS: Overall prognosis has improved considerably with current multifactorial treatment of DN in type 2 diabetes, including long-term RAS inhibition....... become standard of care. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: All patients with type 2 diabetes and DN (n = 543) at the Steno Diabetes Center were followed during 2000-2010. GFR was measured yearly with 51Cr-EDTA plasma clearance. Annual decline in GFR was determined in patients with at least three measurements...

  17. 38 CFR 3.24 - Improved pension rates-Surviving children. (United States)


    ...-Surviving children. 3.24 Section 3.24 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS... rates—Surviving children. (a) General. The provisions of this section apply to children of a deceased veteran not in the custody of a surviving spouse who has basic eligibility to receive improved...

  18. Social networks in improvement of health care. (United States)

    Masic, Izet; Sivic, Suad; Toromanovic, Selim; Borojevic, Tea; Pandza, Haris


    , etc., which gives a special emphasis on public health aspects of information, especially in the field of medicine and health care. The authors of this paper discuss the role and practical importance of social networks in improving the health and solving of health problems without the physical entrance into the health care system. Social networks have their advantages and disadvantages, benefits and costs, especially when it comes to information which within the network set unprofessional people from unreliable sources, without an adequate selection. The ethical aspect of the norms in this segment is still not adequately regulated, so any sanctions for the unauthorized and malicious use of social networks in private and other purposes in order to obtain personal gain at the expense of individuals or groups (sick or healthy, owners of certain businesses and companies, health organizations and pharmaceutical manufacturers, etc.), for which there is still no global or European codes and standards of conduct. Cyber crime is now one of the mostly present types of crime in modern times, as evidenced by numerous scandals that are happening both globally and locally.

  19. Improving Quality of Care in Primary Health-Care Facilities in Rural Nigeria


    Okoli Ugo; Eze-Ajoku Ezinne; Oludipe Modupe; Spieker Nicole; Ekezie Winifred; Ohiri Kelechi


    Background: Nigeria has a high population density but a weak health-care system. To improve the quality of care, 3 organizations carried out a quality improvement pilot intervention at the primary health-care level in selected rural areas. Objective: To assess the change in quality of care in primary health-care facilities in rural Nigeria following the provision of technical governance support and to document the successes and challenges encountered. Method: A total of 6 states were selected...

  20. Improving stroke care for patients at Cavan hospital [poster

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Murugasu, G Dr.


    Under the Quality and Continuing Care Directorate (QCCD) in stroke care Cavan General Hospital was identified as a hospital that received a large number of stroke and TIA patients. A programme was established to improve services to this population.

  1. Recent improvement in survival of breast cancer patients in Saarland, Germany. (United States)

    Brenner, H; Stegmaier, C; Ziegler, H


    A new method for more timely monitoring of cancer patient survival was employed to assess progress in 5-year survival of breast cancer patients in Saarland, Germany, between 1980-84 and 1990-94. Five-year relative survival gradually increased from 68.8% to 73.5%. Improvements were most pronounced among age groups 50-59 and 60-69. The latter had the highest 5-year relative survival (77.1%) in 1990-94.

  2. Improving search filter development: a study of palliative care literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tieman Jennifer


    Full Text Available Abstract Background It is difficult to systematically search for literature relevant to palliative care in general medical journals. A previously developed search filter for use on OVID Medline validated using a gold standard set of references identified through hand searching, achieved an unacceptably low sensitivity (45.4%. Retrieving relevant literature is integral to support evidence based practice, and understanding the nature of the incorrectly excluded citations (false negatives using the filter may lead to improvement in the filter's performance. Methods The objectives were to describe the nature of subjects reflected in the false negative citations and to empirically improve the sensitivity of the search filter. A thematic analysis of MeSH terms by three independent reviewers was used to describe the subject coverage of the missed records. Using a frequency analysis of MeSH terms, those headings which could individually contribute at least 2.5% to sensitivity (occurring 19 or more times were added to the search filter. All previously run searches were rerun at the same time as the revised filter, and results compared. Results Thematic analysis of MeSH terms identified thirteen themes reflected in the missing records, none of them intrinsically palliative. The addition of six MeSH terms to the existing search filter (physician-patient relations, prognosis, quality of life, survival rate, treatment outcome and attitude to health led to an increase in sensitivity from 46.3% to 64.7%, offset by a decrease in precision from 72.6% to 21.9%. Conclusion The filter's sensitivity was successfully increased using frequency analysis of MeSH terms, offset by a decrease in precision. A thematic analysis of MeSH terms for the false negative citations confirmed the absence of any intrinsically palliative theme or term, suggesting that future improvements to search filters for palliative care literature will first depend on better identifying how

  3. Use of Aspirin postdiagnosis improves survival for colon cancer patients (United States)

    Bastiaannet, E; Sampieri, K; Dekkers, O M; de Craen, A J M; van Herk-Sukel, M P P; Lemmens, V; van den Broek, C B M; Coebergh, J W; Herings, R M C; van de Velde, C J H; Fodde, R; Liefers, G J


    Background: The preventive role of non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and aspirin, in particular, on colorectal cancer is well established. More recently, it has been suggested that aspirin may also have a therapeutic role. Aim of the present observational population-based study was to assess the therapeutic effect on overall survival of aspirin/NSAIDs as adjuvant treatment used after the diagnosis of colorectal cancer patients. Methods: Data concerning prescriptions were obtained from PHARMO record linkage systems and all patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer (1998–2007) were selected from the Eindhoven Cancer Registry (population-based cancer registry). Aspirin/NSAID use was classified as none, prediagnosis and postdiagnosis and only postdiagnosis. Patients were defined as non-user of aspirin/NSAIDs from the date of diagnosis of the colorectal cancer to the date of first use of aspirin or NSAIDs and user from first use to the end of follow-up. Poisson regression was performed with user status as time-varying exposure. Results: In total, 1176 (26%) patients were non-users, 2086 (47%) were prediagnosis and postdiagnosis users and 1219 (27%) were only postdiagnosis users (total n=4481). Compared with non-users, a survival gain was observed for aspirin users; the adjusted rate ratio (RR) was 0.77 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.63–0.95; P=0.015). Stratified for colon and rectal, the survival gain was only present in colon cancer (adjusted RR 0.65 (95%CI 0.50–0.84; P=0.001)). For frequent users survival gain was larger (adjusted RR 0.61 (95%CI 0.46–0.81; P=0.001). In rectal cancer, aspirin use was not associated with survival (adjusted RR 1.10 (95%CI 0.79–1.54; P=0.6). The NSAIDs use was associated with decreased survival (adjusted RR 1.93 (95%CI 1.70–2.20; P<0.001). Conclusion: Aspirin use initiated or continued after diagnosis of colon cancer is associated with a lower risk of overall mortality. These findings strongly support initiation of

  4. Improving depression care: barriers, solutions, and research needs. (United States)

    Von Korff, M; Katon, W; Unützer, J; Wells, K; Wagner, E H


    Potential solutions for barriers to improved organization of care of depressive illness were identified. These included (1) aligning efforts to improve depression care with broader strategies for improving care of other chronic conditions; (2) increasing the availability of depression case management services in primary care; (3) developing registries and reminder systems to ensure active follow-up of depressed patients; (4) achieving agreement on how depression outcomes should be measured to provide outcomes-based performance standards; (5) providing greater support from mental health specialists for management of depressed patients by primary care providers; (6) campaigns to reduce the stigma associated with treatment of depressive illness; (7) increased dissemination of interventions that activate and empower patients managing a depressive illness; (8) redefining the lack of time of primary care providers for high-quality depression care as issues in organization of care and provider training; and (9) development of incentives (organizational or financial) for high-quality depression care. Research needs were identified according to what has been learned to date. Identified research needs included: studies of approaches to organization of case management, research in new populations (e.g., new diagnostic groups, rural populations, the disadvantaged, the elderly, and those with chronic medical illnesses), research on stepped care and relapse prevention strategies, evaluation of the societal benefits of improved depression care, and multisite trials and meta-analytic approaches that can provide adequate statistical power to assess societal benefits of improved care.

  5. Improving primary health care through technological innovation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groenewegen, P.P.; Hutten, J.B.F.


    As a result of policy changes and developments on the demand side, the importance of technology in primary health care will grow fast. An approach to the implementation of new technologies in primary health care is presented in this article. First we describe the main problems in Dutch primary healt

  6. Family physicians improve patient health care quality and outcomes. (United States)

    Bowman, Marjorie A; Neale, Anne Victoria


    This issue exemplifies family physicians' ability to provide great care and to continuously improve. For example, beyond other specialty care, the care provided by family physicians is associated with improved melanoma diagnosis and outcomes and improved preventive services for those with a history of breast cancer. Electronic health records are providing new avenues to both assess outcomes and influence care. However, to truly reward quality care, simplistic and readily measurable items such as laboratory results or assessment of the provision of preventive services must be adjusted for risk. Health insurance influences classic preventive care services more than personal health behaviors. The care provided at federally qualified health centers throughout the nation is highly appreciated by the people they serve and is not plagued by the types of disparities in other settings.

  7. Improving village poultry’s survival rate through community-based poultry health management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sodjinou, Epiphane; Henningsen, Arne; Koudande, Olorounto D.

    that governments and development agencies can improve village poultry survival rates by investing in the dissemination of information regarding best husbandry management practices through approaches that rely on the community such as CBM because CBM groups serve as channels for the dissemination of village poultry...... of technologies – poultry vaccination, construction of henhouses, and improved feed – disseminated through the CBM also significantly improves the survival rate. The access to markets for inputs and veterinary services is also important in improving the survival rate of poultry. Finally, the study suggests...

  8. Improving village poultry's survival rate through community-based poultry health management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sodjinou, Epiphane; Henningsen, Arne; Koudande, Olorounto Delphin


    that governments and development agencies can improve village poultry survival rates by investing in the dissemination of information regarding best husbandry management practices through approaches that rely on the community such as CBM because CBM groups serve as channels for the dissemination of village poultry...... of technologies—poultry vaccination, construction of henhouses, and improved feed—disseminated through the CBM also significantly improves the survival rate. The access to markets for inputs and veterinary services is also important in improving the survival rate of poultry. Finally, the study suggests...

  9. Cancer pathways are associated with improved long-term survival

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kenneth Højsgaard; Maina, Pierre Jean-Claude


    INTRODUCTION: The impact of cancer patient pathways (CPP) on long-term outcome after surgery for colorectal cancer has not been documented. This study aimed to investigate the effect of CPP on survival in patients who underwent surgery for colorectal cancer. METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort...... study performed in a single centre on prospectively collected data from a national database, the Danish Colorectal Cancer Group. In total, we reviewed 309 consecutive patients (145 females) with a median age of 70 years (range: 30-92 years), who underwent surgery for colorectal cancer between 2007...

  10. Improved survival in HIV-infected persons: consequences and perspectives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lohse, Nicolai; Hansen, Ann-Brit Eg; Gerstoft, Jan


    . Further, they may expect to be treated equally with other members of society with respect to access to mortgage, health insurance and life insurance. As the infected population ages, more patients will contract age-related diseases, and the disease burden on some individuals may even come to be dominated......, with lifestyle factors potentially playing a pronounced role. Consequently, an effort to further increase survival must target risk factors for both HIV-related and -unrelated mortality. The continuation of the positive trend may be achieved by increased HIV testing, earlier initiation of antiretroviral therapy...

  11. Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Chart Book (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — The HHS Assistant Secretary for Policy and Evaluation (ASPE) has conducted several research projects in the area of Medicare acute and post acute care episodes. The...

  12. Monitoring and improving care in thoracic surgery


    Numan, R.C.


    Quality of Care (QoC) plays a central role in the way healthcare is delivered. In the world of thoracic surgery for lung cancer, surgeons are faced with complex and sometimes high-risk surgical resections on an aging patient population with an increasing incidence of frail physical health. This increasing complexity demands a multidisciplinary approach rearranging pre-, peri- and postoperative care in a way safety, efficiency and high quality are guaranteed. The safety and quality of healthca...

  13. Information Technology to Support Improved Care For Chronic Illness


    Young, Alexander S.; Chaney, Edmund; Shoai, Rebecca; Bonner, Laura; Cohen, Amy N.; Doebbeling, Brad; Dorr, David; Goldstein, Mary K.; Kerr, Eve; Nichol, Paul; Perrin, Ruth


    Background In populations with chronic illness, outcomes improve with the use of care models that integrate clinical information, evidence-based treatments, and proactive management of care. Health information technology is believed to be critical for efficient implementation of these chronic care models. Health care organizations have implemented information technologies, such as electronic medical records, to varying degrees. However, considerable uncertainty remains regarding the relative ...

  14. Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life (United States)

    ... fullstory_160885.html Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life Also increases chances of having end-of-life ... incurable cancer helps patients cope and improves their quality of life, a new study shows. It also leads to ...

  15. Impact of Changes in Perinatal Care on Neonatal Respiratory Outcome and Survival of Preterm Newborns: An Overview of 15 Years

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Filipa Flor-de-Lima


    Full Text Available Survival and outcomes for preterm infants with respiratory distress syndrome (RDS have improved over the past 30 years. We conducted a study to assess the changes in perinatal care and delivery room management and their impact on respiratory outcome of very low birth weight newborns, over the last 15 years. A comparison between two epochs was performed, the periods before and after 2005, when early nasal continuous positive airway pressure (NCPAP and Intubation-SURfactant-Extubation (INSURE were introduced in our center. Three hundred ninety-five clinical records were assessed, 198 (50.1% females, gestational age 29.1 weeks (22–36, and birth weight 1130 g (360–1498. RDS was diagnosed in 247 (62.5% newborns and exogenous surfactant was administered to 217 (54.9%. Thirty-three (8.4% developed bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD, and 92 (23% were deceased. With the introduction of early NCPAP and INSURE, there was a decrease on the endotracheal intubation need and invasive ventilation (P<0.0001, oxygen therapy (P=0.002, and mortality (P<0.0001. The multivariate model revealed a nonsignificant reduction in BPD between the two epochs (OR=0.86; 95% CI 0.074–9.95; P=0.9. The changes in perinatal care over the last 15 years were associated to an improvement of respiratory outcome and survival, despite a nonsignificant decrease in BPD rate.

  16. Challenges to Improving Combat Casualty Survivability on the Battlefield (United States)


    data collection in the prehospital setting, it is likely the decision cycle could be far re- duced from the 11 years observed. Changing the narrative...trying to perfect golf clubs, golf balls, and golf shoes , and virtually no research dollars on how to train the best golfers. Prehospital care...preparing for war. When not deployed or in a recovery or support cycle , they are focused on training and preparing for the next mission. Conversely, the

  17. Improving managed care value through customer service. (United States)

    Tomczyk, Dennis J


    The ability of managed care providers to deliver high-quality customer service to managed care customers depends on their adoption of basic customer-service principles. To apply these principles effectively, providers need to understand and work to exceed the particular needs and expectations of these customers, which include boards of directors, senior executives, physicians, healthcare providers, clinical and patient financial services managers and staff, employers, brokers, and patients. Although these needs and expectations can be predicted to some extent, providers would be wise to implement regular surveys of customers and an open procedure for soliciting customer feedback about service issues. Better customer service for the broad range of managed care customers translates into higher levels of employer and patient satisfaction, which ultimately benefits providers.

  18. The ReACH Collaborative--improving quality home care. (United States)

    Boyce, Patricia Simino; Pace, Karen B; Lauder, Bonnie; Solomon, Debra A


    Research on quality of care has shown that vigorous leadership, clear goals, and compatible incentive systems are critical factors in influencing successful change (Institute of Medicine, 2001). Quality improvement is a complex process, and clinical quality improvement applications are more likely to be effective in organizations that are ready for change and have strong leaders, who are committed to creating and reinforcing a work environment that supports quality goals (Shortell, 1998). Key leadership roles include providing clear and sustained direction, articulating a coherent set of values and incentives to guide group and individual activities, aligning and integrating improvement efforts into organizational priorities, obtaining or freeing up resources to implement improvement activities, and creating a culture of "continuous improvement" that encourages and rewards the pursuit and achievement of shared quality aims (Institute of Medicine, 2001, 70-71). In summary, home health care is a significant and growing sector of the health care system that provides care to millions of vulnerable patients. There seems little doubt that home health agencies want to focus on quality of care issues and provide optimal care to home-based patients. Furthermore, there is a growing awareness of the value for adapting innovative, effective models for improving the culture of home care practice. This awareness stems from the notion that some agencies see quality improvement activities as a way for them to distinguish themselves not only to regulators and customers, but also to meet the cultural and transformational needs to remain viable in a constantly evolving and competitive health care industry.

  19. Veterans' Perspectives on Interventions to Improve Retention in HIV Care.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie G Minick

    Full Text Available Poor retention in HIV medical care is associated with increased mortality among patients with HIV/AIDS. Developing new interventions to improve retention in HIV primary care is needed. The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA is the largest single provider of HIV care in the US. We sought to understand what veterans would want in an intervention to improve retention in VA HIV care. We conducted 18 one-on-one interviews and 15 outpatient focus groups with 46 patients living with HIV infection from the Michael E. DeBakey VAMC (MEDVAMC. Analysis identified three focus areas for improving retention in care: developing an HIV friendly clinic environment, providing mental health and substance use treatment concurrent with HIV care and encouraging peer support from other Veterans with HIV.

  20. Improved Survival with the Patients with Variceal Bleed


    Praveen Sharma; Sarin, Shiv K.


    Variceal hemorrhage is a major cause of death in patients with cirrhosis. Over the past two decades new treatment modalities have been introduced in the management of acute variceal bleeding (AVB) and several recent studies have suggested that the outcome of patients with cirrhosis and AVB has improved. Improved supportive measures, combination therapy which include early use of portal pressure reducing drugs with low rates of adverse effects (somatostatin, octerotide or terlipressin) and end...

  1. A multicenter, prospective evaluation of quality of care and mortality in Japan based on the Surviving Sepsis Campaign guidelines. (United States)

    Fujishima, Seitaro; Gando, Satoshi; Saitoh, Daizoh; Mayumi, Toshihiko; Kushimoto, Shigeki; Shiraishi, Shin-Ichiro; Ogura, Hiroshi; Takuma, Kiyotsugu; Kotani, Joji; Ikeda, Hiroto; Yamashita, Norio; Suzuki, Koichiro; Tsuruta, Ryosuke; Takeyama, Naoshi; Araki, Tsunetoshi; Suzuki, Yasushi; Miki, Yasuo; Yamaguchi, Yoshihiro; Aikawa, Naoki


    To elucidate the standard Surviving Sepsis Campaign (SSC) guidelines-based quality of care and mortality related to severe sepsis in Japan, we conducted a multicenter, prospective, observational study using a new web-based database between June 1, 2010, and December 31, 2011. A total of 1104 patients with severe sepsis were enrolled from 39 Japanese emergency and critical care centers. All-cause hospital mortality was 29.3% in patients with severe sepsis and 40.7% in patients with septic shock. Pulmonary, renal, hepatic, and hematological dysfunctions were associated with significantly higher mortality, and hematological dysfunction, especially coagulopathy, was associated with the highest odds ratio for mortality. Compliance with severe sepsis bundles in our study was generally low compared with that in a previous international sepsis registry study, and glycemic control was associated with lowest odds ratio for mortality. Despite higher complication rates of multiple organ dysfunction syndrome and low compliance with severe sepsis bundles on the whole, mortality in our study was similar to that in the international sepsis registry study. From these results, we concluded that our prospective multicenter study was successful in evaluating SSC guidelines-based standard quality of care and mortality related to severe sepsis in Japan. Although mortality in Japan was equivalent to that reported worldwide in the above-mentioned international sepsis registry study, compliance with severe sepsis bundles was low. Thus, there is scope for improvement in the initial treatment of severe sepsis and septic shock in Japanese emergency and critical care centers.

  2. A multidisciplinary team care approach improves outcomes in high-risk pediatric neuroblastoma patients. (United States)

    Chang, Hsiu-Hao; Liu, Yen-Lin; Lu, Meng-Yao; Jou, Shiann-Tarng; Yang, Yung-Li; Lin, Dong-Tsamn; Lin, Kai-Hsin; Tzen, Kai-Yuan; Yen, Ruoh-Fang; Lu, Ching-Chu; Liu, Chia-Ju; Peng, Steven Shinn-Forng; Jeng, Yung-Ming; Huang, Shiu-Feng; Lee, Hsinyu; Juan, Hsueh-Fen; Huang, Min-Chuan; Liao, Yung-Feng; Lee, Ya-Ling; Hsu, Wen-Ming


    We assessed the impact of a multidisciplinary team care program on treatment outcomes in neuroblastoma patients. Newly diagnosed neuroblastoma patients received treatment under the Taiwan Pediatric Oncology Group (TPOG) N2002 protocol at the National Taiwan University Hospital beginning in 2002. A multidisciplinary team care approach that included nurse-led case management for patients treated under this protocol began in January 2010. Fifty-eight neuroblastoma patients, including 29 treated between 2002 and 2009 (Group 1) and 29 treated between 2010 and 2014 (Group 2), were enrolled in the study. The 5-year overall survival (OS) and event-free survival (EFS) rates for all 58 patients were 59% and 54.7%, respectively. Group 2 patients, who were treated after implementation of the multidisciplinary team care program, had better 3-year EFS (P = 0.046), but not OS (P = 0.16), rates than Group 1 patients. In a multivariate analysis, implementation of the multidisciplinary team approach was the only significant independent prognostic factor for neuroblastoma patients. In further subgroup analyses, the multidisciplinary team approach improved EFS, but not OS, in patients with stage 4 disease, those in the high-risk group, and those with non-MYCN amplified tumors. These data indicate a multidisciplinary team care approach improved survival outcomes in high-risk neuroblastoma patients. However, further investigation will be required to evaluate the long-term effects of this approach over longer follow-up periods.

  3. Effects of multidisciplinary team care on the survival of patients with different stages of non-small cell lung cancer: a national cohort study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chien-Chou Pan

    Full Text Available In Taiwan, cancer is the top cause of death, and the mortality rate of lung cancer is the highest of all cancers. Some studies have demonstrated that multidisciplinary team (MDT care can improve survival rates of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC patients. However, no study has discussed the effect of MDT care on different stages of NSCLC. The target population for this study consisted of patients with NSCLC newly diagnosed in the 2005-2010 Cancer Registry. The data was linked with the 2002-2011 National Health Insurance Research Database and the 2005-2011 Cause of Death Statistics Database. The multivariate Cox proportional hazards model was used to explore whether the involvement of MDT care had an effect on survival. This study applied the propensity score as a control variable to reduce selection bias between patients with and without involvement of MDT care. The adjusted hazard ratio (HR of death of MDT participants with stage III & IV NSCLC was significantly lower than that of MDT non-participants (adjusted HR = 0.87, 95% confidence interval = 0.84-0.90. This study revealed that MDT care are significantly associated with higher survival rate of patients with stage III and IV NSCLC, and thus MDT care should be used in the treatment of these patients.

  4. Implementing chronic care for COPD: planned visits, care coordination, and patient empowerment for improved outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fromer L


    Full Text Available Len FromerDepartment of Family Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USAAbstract: Current primary care patterns for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD focus on reactive care for acute exacerbations, often neglecting ongoing COPD management to the detriment of patient experience and outcomes. Proactive diagnosis and ongoing multifactorial COPD management, comprising smoking cessation, influenza and pneumonia vaccinations, pulmonary rehabilitation, and symptomatic and maintenance pharmacotherapy according to severity, can significantly improve a patient's health-related quality of life, reduce exacerbations and their consequences, and alleviate the functional, utilization, and financial burden of COPD. Redesign of primary care according to principles of the chronic care model, which is implemented in the patient-centered medical home, can shift COPD management from acute rescue to proactive maintenance. The chronic care model and patient-centered medical home combine delivery system redesign, clinical information systems, decision support, and self-management support within a practice, linked with health care organization and community resources beyond the practice. COPD care programs implementing two or more chronic care model components effectively reduce emergency room and inpatient utilization. This review guides primary care practices in improving COPD care workflows, highlighting the contributions of multidisciplinary collaborative team care, care coordination, and patient engagement. Each primary care practice can devise a COPD care workflow addressing risk awareness, spirometric diagnosis, guideline-based treatment and rehabilitation, and self-management support, to improve patient outcomes in COPD.Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic care model, patient-centered medical home, self-management, interdisciplinary care team, coordination of care

  5. Pomalidomide Plus Low-Dose Dexamethasone Improves Survival for Patients with Multiple Myeloma (United States)

    ... Health Professional Plasma Cell Neoplasms Treatment Research Pomalidomide plus Low-Dose Dexamethasone Improves Survival for Patients with ... pomalidomide, bortezomib, and low-dose dexamethasone with bortezomib plus low-dose dexamethasone in patients with previously treated ...

  6. Improving the Survivability of a Stochastic Communication Network (United States)


    algorithm is called a labelling algorithm, and it has been the basis for other researchers, such as Edmonds and Karp [15], for developing a more...15. Edmonds, J. and R. M. Karp . "Theoretical Improvements in Logorithmic Effi- ciency for Network Flow Problems," Jour. A CM, 19: 248-264 (April, 1972...Conference Proceedings, 41: 49-54 (1972). 19. Hillier, Frederick S. and Gerald J. Lievernan. Introduction to Opt rafio., R(- search (Fourth Edition). Oakland

  7. Metrics for assessing improvements in primary health care. (United States)

    Stange, Kurt C; Etz, Rebecca S; Gullett, Heidi; Sweeney, Sarah A; Miller, William L; Jaén, Carlos Roberto; Crabtree, Benjamin F; Nutting, Paul A; Glasgow, Russell E


    Metrics focus attention on what is important. Balanced metrics of primary health care inform purpose and aspiration as well as performance. Purpose in primary health care is about improving the health of people and populations in their community contexts. It is informed by metrics that include long-term, meaning- and relationship-focused perspectives. Aspirational uses of metrics inspire evolving insights and iterative improvement, using a collaborative, developmental perspective. Performance metrics assess the complex interactions among primary care tenets of accessibility, a whole-person focus, integration and coordination of care, and ongoing relationships with individuals, families, and communities; primary health care principles of inclusion and equity, a focus on people's needs, multilevel integration of health, collaborative policy dialogue, and stakeholder participation; basic and goal-directed health care, prioritization, development, and multilevel health outcomes. Environments that support reflection, development, and collaborative action are necessary for metrics to advance health and minimize unintended consequences.

  8. Correction, improvement and model verification of CARE 3, version 3 (United States)

    Rose, D. M.; Manke, J. W.; Altschul, R. E.; Nelson, D. L.


    An independent verification of the CARE 3 mathematical model and computer code was conducted and reported in NASA Contractor Report 166096, Review and Verification of CARE 3 Mathematical Model and Code: Interim Report. The study uncovered some implementation errors that were corrected and are reported in this document. The corrected CARE 3 program is called version 4. Thus the document, correction. improvement, and model verification of CARE 3, version 3 was written in April 1984. It is being published now as it has been determined to contain a more accurate representation of CARE 3 than the preceding document of April 1983. This edition supercedes NASA-CR-166122 entitled, 'Correction and Improvement of CARE 3,' version 3, April 1983.

  9. Improving organizational climate for excellence in patient care. (United States)

    Arnold, Edwin


    Managers in health care organizations today are expected to achieve higher-quality patient care at a lower cost. Developing and maintaining a positive organizational climate can help improve motivation and foster higher employee performance. In turn, this will help the organization deliver better patient care at a lower cost. This article offers metrics for assessing organizational climate, analyzes barriers to a positive climate, and explores strategies that managers can use to build the type of climate that fosters high performance.

  10. Improved survival with the patients with variceal bleed. (United States)

    Sharma, Praveen; Sarin, Shiv K


    Variceal hemorrhage is a major cause of death in patients with cirrhosis. Over the past two decades new treatment modalities have been introduced in the management of acute variceal bleeding (AVB) and several recent studies have suggested that the outcome of patients with cirrhosis and AVB has improved. Improved supportive measures, combination therapy which include early use of portal pressure reducing drugs with low rates of adverse effects (somatostatin, octerotide or terlipressin) and endoscopic variceal ligation has become the first line treatment in the management of AVB. Short-term antibiotic prophylaxis, early use of lactulose for prevention of hepatic encephalopathy, application of early transjugular intrahepatic portasystemic shunts (TIPS), fully covered self-expandable metallic stent in patients for AVB may be useful in those cases where balloon tamponade is considered. Early and wide availability of liver transplantation has changed the armamentarium of the clinician for patients with AVB. High hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG) >20 mmHg in AVB has become a useful predictor of outcomes and more aggressive therapies with early TIPS based on HVPG measurement may be the treatment of choice to reduce mortality further.

  11. Improved Survival with the Patients with Variceal Bleed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Praveen Sharma


    Full Text Available Variceal hemorrhage is a major cause of death in patients with cirrhosis. Over the past two decades new treatment modalities have been introduced in the management of acute variceal bleeding (AVB and several recent studies have suggested that the outcome of patients with cirrhosis and AVB has improved. Improved supportive measures, combination therapy which include early use of portal pressure reducing drugs with low rates of adverse effects (somatostatin, octerotide or terlipressin and endoscopic variceal ligation has become the first line treatment in the management of AVB. Short-term antibiotic prophylaxis, early use of lactulose for prevention of hepatic encephalopathy, application of early transjugular intrahepatic portasystemic shunts (TIPS, fully covered self-expandable metallic stent in patients for AVB may be useful in those cases where balloon tamponade is considered. Early and wide availability of liver transplantation has changed the armamentarium of the clinician for patients with AVB. High hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG >20 mmHg in AVB has become a useful predictor of outcomes and more aggressive therapies with early TIPS based on HVPG measurement may be the treatment of choice to reduce mortality further.

  12. Big data analytics to improve cardiovascular care: promise and challenges. (United States)

    Rumsfeld, John S; Joynt, Karen E; Maddox, Thomas M


    The potential for big data analytics to improve cardiovascular quality of care and patient outcomes is tremendous. However, the application of big data in health care is at a nascent stage, and the evidence to date demonstrating that big data analytics will improve care and outcomes is scant. This Review provides an overview of the data sources and methods that comprise big data analytics, and describes eight areas of application of big data analytics to improve cardiovascular care, including predictive modelling for risk and resource use, population management, drug and medical device safety surveillance, disease and treatment heterogeneity, precision medicine and clinical decision support, quality of care and performance measurement, and public health and research applications. We also delineate the important challenges for big data applications in cardiovascular care, including the need for evidence of effectiveness and safety, the methodological issues such as data quality and validation, and the critical importance of clinical integration and proof of clinical utility. If big data analytics are shown to improve quality of care and patient outcomes, and can be successfully implemented in cardiovascular practice, big data will fulfil its potential as an important component of a learning health-care system.

  13. Effects of Quality Improvement System for Child Care Centers (United States)

    Ma, Xin; Shen, Jianping; Kavanaugh, Amy; Lu, Xuejin; Brandi, Karen; Goodman, Jeff; Till, Lance; Watson, Grace


    Using multiple years of data collected from about 100 child care centers in Palm Beach County, Florida, the authors studied whether the Quality Improvement System (QIS) made a significant impact on quality of child care centers. Based on a pre- and postresearch design spanning a period of 13 months, QIS appeared to be effective in improving…

  14. The Coach Is in: Improving Nutritional Care in Nursing Homes (United States)

    Rahman, Anna N.; Simmons, Sandra F.; Applebaum, Robert; Lindabury, Kate; Schnelle, John F.


    Purpose: This article describes and evaluates a long distance coaching course aimed at improving nutritional care in nursing homes (NHs). The course was structured to provide more support than traditional training programs offer. Methods: In a series of 6 monthly teleconferences led by an expert in NH nutritional care, participating NH staff…

  15. Improving Patient Safety Culture in Primary Care: A Systematic Review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verbakel, Natasha J.; Langelaan, Maaike; Verheij, Theo J. M.; Wagner, Cordula; Zwart, Dorien L. M.


    Background: Patient safety culture, described as shared values, attitudes and behavior of staff in a health-care organization, gained attention as a subject of study as it is believed to be related to the impact of patient safety improvements. However, in primary care, it is yet unknown, which effec

  16. Role of TIPS in Improving Survival of Patients with Decompensated Liver Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sundeep J. Punamiya


    Full Text Available Liver cirrhosis is associated with higher morbidity and reduced survival with appearance of portal hypertension and resultant decompensation. Portal decompression plays a key role in improving survival in these patients. Transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunts are known to be efficacious in reducing portal venous pressure and control of complications such as variceal bleeding and ascites. However, they have been associated with significant problems such as poor shunt durability, increased encephalopathy, and unchanged survival when compared with conservative treatment options. The last decade has seen a significant improvement in these complications, with introduction of covered stents, better selection of patients, and clearer understanding of procedural end-points. Use of TIPS early in the period of decompensation also appears promising in further improvement of survival of cirrhotic patients.

  17. [Improvement of child survival in Mexico: the diagonal approach]. (United States)

    Sepúlveda, Jaime; Bustreo, Flavia; Tapia, Roberto; Rivera, Juan; Lozano, Rafael; Olaiz, Gustavo; Partida, Virgilio; García-García, Ma de Lourdes; Valdespino, José Luis


    Public health interventions aimed at children in Mexico have placed the country among the seven countries on track to achieve the goal of child mortality reduction by 2015. We analysed census data, mortality registries, the nominal registry of children, national nutrition surveys, and explored temporal association and biological plausibility to explain the reduction of child, infant, and neonatal mortality rates. During the past 25 years, child mortality rates declined from 64 to 23 per 1000 livebirths. A dramatic decline in diarrhoea mortality rates was recorded. Polio, diphtheria, and measles were eliminated. Nutritional status of children improved significantly for wasting, stunting, and underweight. A selection of highly cost-effective interventions bridging clinics and homes, what we called the diagonal approach, were central to this progress. Although a causal link to the reduction of child mortality was not possible to establish, we saw evidence of temporal association and biological plausibility to the high level of coverage of public health interventions, as well as significant association to the investments in women education, social protection, water, and sanitation. Leadership and continuity of public health policies, along with investments on institutions and human resources strengthening, were also among the reasons for these achievements.

  18. Improvement of child survival in Mexico: the diagonal approach. (United States)

    Sepúlveda, Jaime; Bustreo, Flavia; Tapia, Roberto; Rivera, Juan; Lozano, Rafael; Oláiz, Gustavo; Partida, Virgilio; García-García, Lourdes; Valdespino, José Luis


    Public health interventions aimed at children in Mexico have placed the country among the seven countries on track to achieve the goal of child mortality reduction by 2015. We analysed census data, mortality registries, the nominal registry of children, national nutrition surveys, and explored temporal association and biological plausibility to explain the reduction of child, infant, and neonatal mortality rates. During the past 25 years, child mortality rates declined from 64 to 23 per 1000 livebirths. A dramatic decline in diarrhoea mortality rates was recorded. Polio, diphtheria, and measles were eliminated. Nutritional status of children improved significantly for wasting, stunting, and underweight. A selection of highly cost-effective interventions bridging clinics and homes, what we called the diagonal approach, were central to this progress. Although a causal link to the reduction of child mortality was not possible to establish, we saw evidence of temporal association and biological plausibility to the high level of coverage of public health interventions, as well as significant association to the investments in women education, social protection, water, and sanitation. Leadership and continuity of public health policies, along with investments on institutions and human resources strengthening, were also among the reasons for these achievements.

  19. Improved survival using oxygen free radical scavengers in the presence of ischemic bowel anastomosis. (United States)

    Bergren, C T; Bodzin, J H; Cortez, J A


    A rat model was developed to determine the efficacy of oxygen free radical scavenger compounds in improving small bowel anastomotic healing in ischemia. 50 Sprague-Dawley rats underwent laparotomy and were divided into groups: I. sham operation; II. ischemia produced by ligation of mesenteric vessels along 3-5 cm of bowel; III. bowel transection and anastomosis; IV. ligation of vessels with bowel transection and anastomosis; V. ligation of vessels, bowel transection and IV administration of superoxide dismutase (SOD) (5000 U/kg) prior to anastomosis. All surviving animals were sacrificed after 2 weeks. Anastomotic tensile strength and histology were evaluated. Percent survival and the average length of survival for all groups is seen in the table below. (table: see text) A significant decrease in survival was present with the anastomotic group and the ischemic anastomotic group when compared with controls. An improved survival similar to ischemia alone was present in SOD group. No significant difference was noted between SOD and control groups. The results of this study indicate an improved survival rate and length of survival similar to controls in animals undergoing ischemic and penetrating injury to the bowel with the use of oxygen free radical scavenger compounds prior to anastomosis.

  20. Reducing the iron burden and improving survival in transfusion-dependent thalassemia patients: current perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bayanzay K


    Full Text Available Karim Bayanzay, Lama Alzoebie Department of Hematology, Gulf Medical University, Ajman, United Arab Emirates Abstract: Hypertransfusion regimens for thalassemic patients revolutionized the management of severe thalassemia; transforming a disease which previously led to early infant death into a chronic condition. The devastating effect of the accrued iron from chronic blood transfusions necessitates a more finely tuned approach to limit the complications of the disease, as well as its treatment. A comprehensive approach including carefully tailored transfusion protocol, continuous monitoring and assessment of total body iron levels, and iron chelation are currently the mainstay in treating iron overload. There are also indications for ancillary treatments, such as splenectomy and fetal hemoglobin induction. The main cause of death in iron overload continues to be related to cardiac complications. However, since the widespread use of iron chelation started in the 1970s, there has been a general improvement in survival in these patients. Keywords: hematology, chelators, deferoxamine, deferiserox, deferiprone, liver iron concentration, iron overload, serum ferritin concentration, hepatic iron storage, iron chelation therapy

  1. The business case for health-care quality improvement. (United States)

    Swensen, Stephen J; Dilling, James A; Mc Carty, Patrick M; Bolton, Jeffrey W; Harper, Charles M


    The business case for health-care quality improvement is presented. We contend that investment in process improvement is aligned with patients' interests, the organization's reputation, and the engagement of their workforce. Four groups benefit directly from quality improvement: patients, providers, insurers, and employers. There is ample opportunity, even in today's predominantly pay-for-volume (that is, evolving toward value-based purchasing) insurance system, for providers to deliver care that is in the best interest of the patient while improving their financial performance.

  2. HLA-E expression in cervical adenocarcinomas: association with improved long-term survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spaans Vivian M


    .001, respectively. Conclusion High expression of HLA-E occurred in the majority of all histopathological subtypes of cervical cancer; especially in cervical AC. High HLA-E expression in cervical AC was associated with improved patient survival. This study also highlights the importance of careful evaluation of cervical carcinomas to distinguish histopathological subtypes. In the future, insight into the biological behaviour and distinct molecular carcinogenetic processes of the AC, ASC, and SCC subtypes may contribute to the development of more tumour-specific treatment strategies.

  3. [Strategies for improving care of oncologic patients: SHARE Project results]. (United States)

    Reñones Crego, María de la Concepción; Fernández Pérez, Dolores; Vena Fernández, Carmen; Zamudio Sánchez, Antonio


    Cancer treatment is a major burden for the patient and its family that requires an individualized management by healthcare professionals. Nurses are in charge of coordinating care and are the closest healthcare professionals to patient and family; however, in Spain, there are not standard protocols yet for the management of oncology patients. The Spanish Oncology Nursing Society developed between 2012 and 2014 the SHARE project, with the aim of establishing strategies to improve quality of life and nursing care in oncology patients. It was developed in 3 phases. First, a literature search and review was performed to identify nursing strategies, interventions and tools to improve cancer patients' care. At the second stage, these interventions were agreed within a group of oncology nursing experts; and at the third phase, a different group of experts in oncology care categorized the interventions to identify the ones with highest priority and most feasible to be implemented. As a result, 3 strategic actions were identified to improve nursing care during cancer treatment: To provide a named nurse to carry out the follow up process by attending to the clinic or telephonic consultation, develop therapeutic education with adapted protocols for each tumor type and treatment and ensure specific training for nurses on the management of the cancer patients. Strategic actions proposed in this paper aim to improve cancer patients' healthcare and quality of life through the development of advanced nursing roles based on a higher level of autonomy, situating nurses as care coordinators to assure an holistic care in oncology patients.

  4. Effective treatment of depression improves post-myocardial infarction survival

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Soudabeh; Khojasteh; Banankhah; Erika; Friedmann; Sue; Thomas


    effective treatment of depression reduced mortality in depressed post-MI patients.It is important to monitor the effectiveness of depression treatment and change treatments if necessary to reduce depression and improve cardiac outcomes in depressed post-MI patients.

  5. Are global and regional improvements in life expectancy and in child, adult and senior survival slowing?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan J Hum

    Full Text Available Improvements in life expectancy have been considerable over the past hundred years. Forecasters have taken to applying historical trends under an assumption of continuing improvements in life expectancy in the future. A linear mixed effects model was used to estimate the trends in global and regional rates of improvements in life expectancy, child, adult, and senior survival, in 166 countries between 1950 and 2010. Global improvements in life expectancy, including both child and adult survival rates, decelerated significantly over the study period. Overall life expectancy gains were estimated to have declined from 5.9 to 4.0 months per year for a mean deceleration of -0.07 months/year2; annual child survival gains declined from 4.4 to 1.6 deaths averted per 1000 for a mean deceleration of -0.06 deaths/1000/year2; adult survival gains were estimated to decline from 4.8 to 3.7 deaths averted per 1000 per year for a mean deceleration of -0.08 deaths/1000/year2. Senior survival gains however increased from 2.4 to 4.2 deaths averted per 1000 per year for an acceleration of 0.03 deaths/1000/year2. Regional variation in the four measures was substantial. The rates of global improvements in life expectancy, child survival, and adult survival have declined since 1950 despite an increase in the rate of improvements among seniors. We postulate that low-cost innovation, related to the last half-century progress in health-primarily devoted to children and middle age, is reaping diminishing returns on its investments. Trends are uneven across regions and measures, which may be due in part to the state of epidemiological transition between countries and regions and disparities in the diffusion of innovation, accessible only in high-income countries where life expectancy is already highest.

  6. Improved survival with early adjuvant chemotherapy after colonic resection for stage III colonic cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klein, Mads; Azaquoun, Najah; Jensen, Benny Vittrup


    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: In stage III colonic cancer, time from surgery to start of adjuvant chemotherapy may influence survival. In this study, we evaluated the effect of timing of adjuvant therapy on survival. METHODS: Database study from the Danish Colorectal Cancer Group's national database....... RESULTS: The final population included 1,827 patients scheduled for adjuvant chemotherapy. Adjuvant therapy started within 4 and 8 weeks improved survival when compared to start later than 8 weeks (HR [95%CI]: 1.7 [1.1-2.6]; P = 0.024 and 1.4 [1.07-1.8]; P = 0.013, respectively), whereas...

  7. Improvements in breast cancer survival between 1995 and 2012 in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Maj-Britt; Ejlertsen, Bent; Mouridsen, Henning T


    was extended considerable. Methods A population-based study of 68 842 breast cancer patients registered in the clinical database of the Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group in 1995-2012. Comprehensive data on prognostic factors, comorbidity and treatment together with complete follow-up for survival were....... The modified treatment strategies implemented by the use of nationwide guidelines seemed to have a major impact on the substantial survival improvements....

  8. Hydroxyapatite coating does not improve uncemented stem survival after total hip arthroplasty!

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hailer, Nils P; Lazarinis, Stergios; Mäkelä, Keijo T


    Background and purpose - It is still being debated whether HA coating of uncemented stems used in total hip arthroplasty (THA) improves implant survival. We therefore investigated different uncemented stem brands, with and without HA coating, regarding early and long-term survival. Patients...... this surface treatment had no clinically relevant effect on their outcome, and we thus question whether HA coating adds any value to well-functioning stem designs....

  9. Improving Diabetes Care in the Military Primary Care Clinic: Case Study Review (United States)


    required application of innovative and creative strategies to improve self- management . The cases are representative of some common themes within the patient with type 2 diabetes in a military primary care clinic....enabled patients to engage in self- management . Moreover, this study seeks to better understand how applying the ADA Standards of Care in a military

  10. Economic implications of neonatal intensive care unit collaborative quality improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rogowski, JA; Horbar, JD; Plsek, PE; Baker, LS; Deterding, J; Edwards, WH; Hocker, J; Kantak, AD; Lewallen, P; Lewis, W; Lewit, E; McCarroll, CJ; Mujsce, D; Payne, NR; Shiono, P; Soll, RF; Leahy, K


    Objective. To make measurable improvements in the quality and cost of neonatal intensive care using a multidisciplinary collaborative quality improvement model. Design. Interventional study. Data on treatment costs were collected for infants with birth weight 501 to 1500 g for the period of January

  11. High-quality chronic care delivery improves experiences of chronically ill patients receiving care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.M. Cramm (Jane); A.P. Nieboer (Anna)


    markdownabstract__Abstract__ Objective. Investigate whether high-quality chronic care delivery improved the experiences of patients. Design. This study had a longitudinal design. Setting and Participants. We surveyed professionals and patients in 17 disease management programs targeting patients wi

  12. An HIT Solution for Clinical Care and Disaster Planning: How One health Center in Joplin, MO Survived a Tornado and Avoided a Health Information Disaster. (United States)

    Shin, Peter; Jacobs, Feygele


    Since taking office, President Obama has made substantial investments in promoting the diffusion of health information technology (IT). The objective of the national health IT program is, generally, to enable health care providers to better manage patient care through secure use and sharing of health information. Through the use of technologies including electronic health records, providers can better maintain patient care information and facilitate communication, often improving care outcomes. The recent tornado in Joplin, MO highlights the importance of health information technology in the health center context, and illustrates the importance of secure electronic health information systems as a crucial element of disaster and business continuity planning. This article examines the experience of a community health center in the aftermath of the major tornado that swept through the American Midwest in the spring of 2011, and provides insight into the planning for disaster survival and recovery as it relates to patient records and health center data.

  13. Depression Care Management: Can Employers Purchase Improved Outcomes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn Rost


    Full Text Available Fourteen vendors are currently selling depression care management products to US employers after randomized trials demonstrate improved work outcomes. The research team interviewed 10 (71.4% of these vendors to compare their products to four key components of interventions demonstrated to improve work outcomes. Five of 10 depression products incorporate all four key components, three of which are sold by health maintenance organizations (HMOs; however, HMOs did not deliver these components at the recommended intensity and/or duration. Only one product delivered by a disease management company delivered all four components of care at the recommended intensity and duration. This “voltage drop,” which we anticipate will increase with product implementation, suggests that every delivery system should carefully evaluate the design of its depression product before implementation for its capacity to deliver evidence-based care, repeating these evaluations as new evidence emerges.

  14. Information communication technology: new approach for rural cancer care improvement. (United States)

    Maserat, Elham


    Cancer control aims to reduce the incidence, morbidity, and mortality of cancer and to improve the quality of life of cancer patients. For rural populations this presents particular problems. This article covers challenges of oncology care in rural areas and solutions via applying information communication technology with specialty telemedicine for overcoming problems in prevention, early diagnosis, treatment, and palliative care. In addition, telecommunications infrastructures and frameworks for implementation of telemedicine are described.

  15. Point of care investigations in pediatric care to improve health care in rural areas. (United States)

    Walia, Kamini


    The good quality laboratory services in developing countries are often limited to major urban centers. As a result, many commercially available high-quality diagnostic tests for infectious diseases are neither accessible nor affordable to patients in the rural areas. Health facilities in rural areas are compromised and this limits the usability and performance of the best medical diagnostic technologies in rural areas as they are designed for air-conditioned laboratories, refrigerated storage of chemicals, a constant supply of calibrators and reagents, stable electrical power, highly trained personnel and rapid transportation of samples. The advent of new technologies have allowed miniaturization and integration of complex functions, which has made it possible for sophisticated diagnostic tools to move out of the developed-world laboratory in the form of a "point of care"(POC) tests. Many diagnostic tests are being developed using these platforms. However, the challenge is to develop diagnostics which are inexpensive, rugged and well suited to the medical and social contexts of the developing world and do not compromise on accuracy and reliability. The already available POC tests which are reliable and affordable, like for HIV infection, malaria, syphilis, and some neglected tropical diseases, and POC tests being developed for other diseases if correctly used and effectively regulated after rigorous evaluation, have the potential to make a difference in clinical management and improve surveillance. In order to use these tests effectively they would need to be supported by technically competent manpower, availability of good-quality reagents, and healthcare providers who value and are able to interpret laboratory results to guide treatment; and a system for timely communication between the laboratory and the healthcare provider. Strengthening the laboratories at the rural level can enable utilization of these diagnostics for improving the diagnosis and management of

  16. Pain management improves care and revenue: an interview with ProCare Systems. (United States)

    Davis, F N; Walsh, C


    As provider and managed care organizations continue to look for better ways to control costs and improve patient outcomes, disease management programs are getting an increasing share of their attention. One often-over-looked area with significant potential to improve outcomes, reduce costs, and enhance revenues is pain management. It has been estimated that at least 40 percent of senior citizens suffer from chronic pain, and as the population ages, the number of chronic pain sufferers will only increase. Pain management companies have been forming to meet the current and future demand for comprehensive pain management programs. One such company is ProCare Systems, a single-specialty physician practice management company based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. HFM spoke with Fred N. Davis, MD, president and cofounder of ProCare Systems, and Cyndy Walsh, ProCare System's CEO, about pain management programs and the patient care and financial impact they can effect.

  17. Concept mapping: a tool for improving patient care. (United States)

    Aberdeen, Suzanne


    This article reviews the use of concept mapping as a person-centred problem-solving aid to assessment, risk management, care evaluation and care planning for nurses. Concept maps are diagrams that are used to organise, represent and create knowledge, and provide a useful framework for critical analysis and problem solving. Concept mapping is discussed and demonstrated in relation to improving the quality of care for patients and as a tool for clinical leadership and teamwork. The benefits of concept mapping for patients' wellbeing and safety, staff satisfaction and team learning are evidenced.

  18. Parasitic infection improves survival from septic peritonitis by enhancing mast cell responses to bacteria in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel E Sutherland

    Full Text Available Mammals are serially infected with a variety of microorganisms, including bacteria and parasites. Each infection reprograms the immune system's responses to re-exposure and potentially alters responses to first-time infection by different microorganisms. To examine whether infection with a metazoan parasite modulates host responses to subsequent bacterial infection, mice were infected with the hookworm-like intestinal nematode Nippostrongylus brasiliensis, followed in 2-4 weeks by peritoneal injection of the pathogenic bacterium Klebsiella pneumoniae. Survival from Klebsiella peritonitis two weeks after parasite infection was better in Nippostrongylus-infected animals than in unparasitized mice, with Nippostrongylus-infected mice having fewer peritoneal bacteria, more neutrophils, and higher levels of protective interleukin 6. The improved survival of Nippostrongylus-infected mice depends on IL-4 because the survival benefit is lost in mice lacking IL-4. Because mast cells protect mice from Klebsiella peritonitis, we examined responses in mast cell-deficient Kit(W-sh/Kit(W-sh mice, in which parasitosis failed to improve survival from Klebsiella peritonitis. However, adoptive transfer of cultured mast cells to Kit(W-sh/Kit(W-sh mice restored survival benefits of parasitosis. These results show that recent infection with Nippostrongylus brasiliensis protects mice from Klebsiella peritonitis by modulating mast cell contributions to host defense, and suggest more generally that parasitosis can yield survival advantages to a bacterially infected host.

  19. Is there evidence that long-term outcomes have improved with intensive care? (United States)

    Wilson-Costello, Deanne


    Advances in perinatal interventions over the past three decades, such as antenatal steroid therapy, ventilator techniques, surfactant therapy, and enhanced nutrition have resulted in a dramatic improvement in the survival of very low birth weight (VLBW) infants. Simultaneously, other advances in reproductive technology procedures have resulted in greater numbers of preterm and multiple births. These extremely premature births account for the vast majority of infant mortality and morbidity in the developed world. Despite the innovative interventions, VLBW infants remain at substantial risk for a wide spectrum of long-term morbidity including cerebral palsy (CP), mental retardation, developmental delay, school problems, behavioral issues, growth failure, and overall poor health status. Recently, ethical concerns have been expressed that improved survival rates for the most immature infants may result in increased rates of disability with substantial resource utilization and declining quality of life for the survivors. This chapter critically evaluates the available neurodevelopmental and health outcomes of very premature infants from the developed world in an attempt to determine if there is evidence that long-term outcomes have improved with neonatal intensive care. Studies on the rates of neurodevelopmental impairment including CP, early childhood and school age functional problems, and special health care issues are surveyed in order to evaluate changes over time and provide an assessment of the success of neonatal intensive care over the past three decades.

  20. Improving care transitions: current practice and future opportunities for pharmacists. (United States)

    Hume, Anne L; Kirwin, Jennifer; Bieber, Heather L; Couchenour, Rachel L; Hall, Deanne L; Kennedy, Amy K; LaPointe, Nancy M Allen; Burkhardt, Crystal D O; Schilli, Kathleen; Seaton, Terry; Trujillo, Jennifer; Wiggins, Barbara


    During the past decade, patient safety issues during care transitions have gained greater attention at both the local and national level. Readmission rates to U.S. hospitals are high, often because of poor care transitions. Serious adverse drug events (ADEs) caused by an incomplete understanding of changes in complex drug regimens can be an important factor contributing to readmission rates. This paper describes the roles and responsibilities of pharmacists in ensuring optimal outcomes from drug therapy during care transitions. Barriers to effective care transitions, including inadequate communication, poor care coordination, and the lack of one clinician ultimately responsible for these transitions, are discussed. This paper also identifies specific patient populations at high risk of ADEs during care transitions. Several national initiatives and newer care transition models are discussed, including multi- and interdisciplinary programs with pharmacists as key members. Among their potential roles, pharmacists should participate on medical rounds where available, perform medication reconciliation and admission drug histories, apply their knowledge of drug therapy to anticipate and resolve problems during transitions, communicate changes in drug regimens between providers and care settings, assess the appropriateness and patient understanding of drug regimens, promote adherence, and assess health literacy. In addition, this paper identifies barriers and ongoing challenges limiting greater involvement of pharmacists from different practice settings during care transitions. Professional degree programs and residency training programs should increase their emphasis on pharmacists' roles, especially as part of interdisciplinary teams, in improving patient safety during care transitions in diverse practice settings. This paper also recommends that Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) standards include specific language regarding the exposure of students to

  1. Statin use is associated with improved survival in patients undergoing surgery for renal cell carcinoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kaffenberger, Samuel D; Lin-Tsai, Opal; Stratton, Kelly L


    ) and disease-specific survival (DSS). Univariable survival analyses were performed using the Kaplan-Meier and the log-rank methods. Multivariable analysis was performed using a Cox proportional hazards model. The predictive discrimination of the models was assessed using the Harrell c-index. RESULTS......: 0.43-0.90; P = 0.011) and DSS (hazard ratio = 0.48; 95% CI: 0.28-0.83; P = 0.009). The multivariable model for DSS had excellent predictive discrimination with a c-index of 0.91. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that statin usage at time of surgery is independently associated with improved OS and DSS......PURPOSE: To determine whether statin use at time of surgery is associated with survival following nephrectomy or partial nephrectomy for renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Statins are thought to exhibit a protective effect on cancer incidence and possibly cancer survival in a number of malignancies...

  2. Patients with hematological disorders requiring admission to medical intensive care unit: Characteristics, survival and prognostic factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Subhash H


    Full Text Available Background: This retrospective chart review assessed the characteristics and outcome of patients with hematological disorders who required admission to medical intensive care unit over a 4 year period (January 1998 to December 2001. Results: There were a total of 104 patients, 67 (64% male, 37 (36% female subjects, with a mean age of 36.3 ± 15.3 years (range 10 to 65 years. The mean duration from hospital admission to ICU transfer was 11 days. Sixty-nine (66% had malignant and 35 (34% had non-malignant conditions. Respiratory distress was the commonest reason for ICU admission 58 (56%. The other indications were hemodynamic instability 38 (36%, low sensorium 22 (21%, following cardio-pulmonary arrest 12 (11.5% and generalized tonic-clonic seizures 5 (5%. Forty-three (42% patients had absolute neutophil count (ANC less than 500, 48 (47.5% had platelet count < 20000. The mean duration of ICU stay was 4 days (range < 24 hours to 28 days. Sixty-nine (66% patients required mechanical ventilation, 61 (59% required hemodynamic support. Pneumonia or sepsis was diagnosed in 71 (68%. Twenty-five (24% survived ICU stay and 20 (19% survived to hospital discharge. ICU admission following cardio-pulmonary arrest, advanced malignancy, requirement of mechanical ventilation, vasopressor support, ANC count < 500 and platelet count < 20000 were the predictors of adverse outcome. Associated organ dysfunction further increases the mortality.

  3. [Improving practice and organisation of care: methodology for systematic reviews]. (United States)

    Zaugg, Vincent; Savoldelli, Virginie; Sabatier, Brigitte; Durieux, Pierre


    The number of intervention studies designed to improve quality of care is increasing exponentially, making it difficult to access all available information on a given subject. Systematic reviews are tools that provide health professionals with comprehensive and objective information. This article describes the main phases of a systematic review: formulating the research question, search and selection of studies, data extraction and analysis, assessment of the methodological quality of studies, and synthesis of the results. Interventions designed to improve professional practices and organisation of care have specific characteristics that determine the methodology of systematic reviews. For example, the often substantial heterogeneity between populations, organisations, and intervention settings among studies must be taken into account, which makes meta-analysis more difficult. Knowledge on specific features of systematic reviews designed to improve quality of care is essential to ensure a good review of the literature, or to evaluate the level of evidence of published systematic reviews.

  4. Patients with type 2 diabetes benefit from primary care-based disease management: a propensity score matched survival time analysis. (United States)

    Drabik, Anna; Büscher, Guido; Thomas, Karsten; Graf, Christian; Müller, Dirk; Stock, Stephanie


    This study aimed to assess the impact of a nationwide German diabetes mellitus disease management program (DMP) on survival time and costs in comparison to routine care. The authors conducted a retrospective observational cohort study using routine administration data from Germany's largest sickness fund to identify insured suffering from diabetes in 2002. A total of 95,443 insured with type 2 diabetes mellitus who were born before January 1, 1962 met the defined inclusion criteria, resulting in 19,888 pairs of DMP participants and nonparticipants matched for socioeconomic and health status using propensity score matching methods. This is the first time propensity score matching has been used to evaluate a survival benefit of DMPs. In the time frame analyzed (3 years), mean survival time for the DMP group was 1045 days vs. 985 days for the routine care group (Ptime. They also incurred lower costs compared to propensity score matched insured in routine care.

  5. Antenatal care strengthening for improved quality of care in Jimma, Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villadsen, Sarah Fredsted; Negussie, Dereje; GebreMariam, Abebe;


    in the evaluation. Improved content of care (physical examinations, laboratory testing, tetanus toxoid (TT)-immunization, health education, conduct of health professionals, and waiting time) were defined as proximal project outcomes and increased quality of care (better identification of health problems....... The effect of the intervention was assessed by comparing the change in quality of care from before to after the intervention period at intervention sites, relative to control sites, using logistic mixed effect regression. RESULTS: The continued attention to the ANC provision during implementation stimulated...... of intervention on various outcomes was significantly modified by maternal education. CONCLUSION: The quality of care can be improved in some important aspects with limited resources. Moreover, the study provides strategic perspectives on how to facilitate improved quality of ANC....

  6. Association of antenatal care with facility delivery and perinatal survival – a population-based study in Bangladesh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pervin Jesmin


    and after the MNCH program initiation (Sobel test of mediation P Conclusions ANC visits are associated with increased uptake of facility-based delivery and improved perinatal survival in the icddr,b SA. Further testing of the icddr,b approach to simultaneously improving quality of ANC and facility delivery care is needed in the existing health system in Bangladesh and in other low-income countries to maximize health benefits to mothers and newborns.

  7. Assessing health centre systems for guiding improvement in diabetes care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robinson Gary


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aboriginal people in Australia experience the highest prevalence of diabetes in the country, an excess of preventable complications and early death. There is increasing evidence demonstrating the importance of healthcare systems for improvement of chronic illness care. The aims of this study were to assess the status of systems for chronic illness care in Aboriginal community health centres, and to explore whether more developed systems were associated with better quality of diabetes care. Methods This cross-sectional study was conducted in 12 Aboriginal community health centres in the Northern Territory of Australia. Assessment of Chronic Illness Care scale was adapted to measure system development in health centres, and administered by interview with health centre staff and managers. Based on a random sample of 295 clinical records from attending clients with diagnosed type 2 diabetes, processes of diabetes care were measured by rating of health service delivery against best-practice guidelines. Intermediate outcomes included the control of HbA1c, blood pressure, and total cholesterol. Results Health centre systems were in the low to mid-range of development and had distinct areas of strength and weakness. Four of the six system components were independently associated with quality of diabetes care: an increase of 1 unit of score for organisational influence, community linkages, and clinical information systems, respectively, was associated with 4.3%, 3.8%, and 4.5% improvement in adherence to process standards; likewise, organisational influence, delivery system design and clinical information systems were related to control of HbA1c, blood pressure, and total cholesterol. Conclusion The state of development of health centre systems is reflected in quality of care outcome measures for patients. The health centre systems assessment tool should be useful in assessing and guiding development of systems for improvement of

  8. Symptom Burden, Survival and Palliative Care in Advanced Soft Tissue Sarcoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas J. Gough


    Full Text Available Introduction. The symptom burden and role of palliative care (PC in patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma (STS are not well defined. Methods. This study retrospectively reviewed both symptoms and PC involvement in patients known to an STS referral centre who died in one calendar year. Results. 81 patients met inclusion criteria of which 27% had locally advanced disease and 73% metastases at initial referral. The median number of symptoms was slowly progressive ranging from 2 (range 0–5 before first-line chemotherapy (=50 to 3 (range 1–6 at the time of best supportive care (BSC decision (=48. Pain and dyspnoea were the commonest symptoms. Median overall survival from BSC decision was 3.4 weeks. 88% had PC involvement (either hospital, community, or both with median time from first PC referral to death of 16 (range 0–110 weeks. Conclusions. Patients with metastatic STS have a significant symptom burden which justifies early PC referral. Pain, including neuropathic pain, is a significant problem. Dyspnoea is common, progressive and appears to be undertreated. Time from BSC decision to death is short, and prospective studies are required to determine whether this is due to overtreatment or very rapid terminal disease progression.

  9. The association of race with timeliness of care and survival among Veterans Affairs health care system patients with late-stage non-small cell lung cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zullig LL


    Full Text Available Leah L Zullig,1,2 William R Carpenter,2 Dawn T Provenzale,1,3 Morris Weinberger,1,2 Bryce B Reeve,2 Christina D Williams,1 George L Jackson1,4 1Center of Excellence for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA; 2Department of Health Policy and Management, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, USA; 3Division of Gastroenterology, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA; 4Division of General Internal Medicine, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA Background: Non-small cell lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related mortality in the United States. Patients with late-stage disease (stage 3/4 have five-year survival rates of 2%–15%. Care quality may be measured as time to receiving recommended care and, ultimately, survival. This study examined the association between race and receipt of timely non-small cell lung cancer care and survival among Veterans Affairs health care system patients. Methods: Data were from the External Peer Review Program, a nationwide Veterans Affairs quality-monitoring program. We included Caucasian or African American patients with pathologically confirmed late-stage non-small cell lung cancer in 2006 and 2007. We examined three quality measures: time from diagnosis to (1 treatment initiation, (2 palliative care or hospice referral, and (3 death. Unadjusted analyses used log-rank and Wilcoxon tests. Adjusted analyses used Cox proportional hazard models. Results: After controlling for patient and disease characteristics using Cox regression, there were no racial differences in time to initiation of treatment (72 days for African American versus 65 days for Caucasian patients, hazard ratio 1.04, P = 0.80 or palliative care or hospice referral (129 days versus 116 days, hazard ratio 1.10, P = 0.34. However, the adjusted model found longer survival for African American patients than for Caucasian patients (133 days versus 117 days, hazard ratio 0

  10. Effectiveness of early antiretroviral therapy initiation to improve survival among HIV-infected adults with tuberculosis: a retrospective cohort study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Molly F Franke


    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Randomized clinical trials examining the optimal time to initiate combination antiretroviral therapy (cART in HIV-infected adults with sputum smear-positive tuberculosis (TB disease have demonstrated improved survival among those who initiate cART earlier during TB treatment. Since these trials incorporated rigorous diagnostic criteria, it is unclear whether these results are generalizable to the vast majority of HIV-infected patients with TB, for whom standard diagnostic tools are unavailable. We aimed to examine whether early cART initiation improved survival among HIV-infected adults who were diagnosed with TB in a clinical setting. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We retrospectively reviewed charts for 308 HIV-infected adults in Rwanda with a CD4 count ≤ 350 cells/µl and a TB diagnosis. We estimated the effect of cART on survival using marginal structural models and simulated 2-y survival curves for the cohort under different cART strategies:start cART 15, 30, 60, or 180 d after TB treatment or never start cART. We conducted secondary analyses with composite endpoints of (1 death, default, or lost to follow-up and (2 death, hospitalization, or serious opportunistic infection. Early cART initiation led to a survival benefit that was most marked for individuals with low CD4 counts. For individuals with CD4 counts of 50 or 100 cells/µl, cART initiation at day 15 yielded 2-y survival probabilities of 0.82 (95% confidence interval: [0.76, 0.89] and 0.86 (95% confidence interval: [0.80, 0.92], respectively. These were significantly higher than the probabilities computed under later start times. Results were similar for the endpoint of death, hospitalization, or serious opportunistic infection. cART initiation at day 15 versus later times was protective against death, default, or loss to follow-up, regardless of CD4 count. As with any observational study, the validity of these findings assumes that biases from residual confounding by

  11. Long-term survival in advanced melanoma patients using repeated therapies: successive immunomodulation improving the odds?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coventry BJ


    had died. Published studies of melanoma therapies were tabled for comparison. Conclusion: The fact that 18 cases of exceptional survival in advanced melanoma were identified is remarkable in itself. Even with recent therapies, the factors for improved survival remain enigmatic; however, one apparent common denominator in most cases was the persistent use of repeated therapies to reduce tumor bulk, induce tumor necrosis, and/or cause immunostimulation. These cases are instructive, suggesting manipulation of an established, endogenous, existing immune response. These observations provide practical evidence that the course for any patient with advanced melanoma at the outset should be considered unpredictable, open to immunomanipulation, and thus not uniformly fatal. The findings were compared and interpreted with reported newer immunotherapeutic approaches. Keywords: advanced melanoma, clinical responses, immunotherapy, prolonged survival

  12. Survival of the project: a case study of ICT innovation in health care. (United States)

    Andreassen, Hege K; Kjekshus, Lars Erik; Tjora, Aksel


    From twenty years of information and communication technology (ICT) projects in the health sector, we have learned one thing: most projects remain projects. The problem of pilotism in e-health and telemedicine is a growing concern, both in medical literature and among policy makers, who now ask for large-scale implementation of ICT in routine health service delivery. In this article, we turn the question of failing projects upside down. Instead of investigating the obstacles to implementing ICT and realising permanent changes in health care routines, we ask what makes the temporary ICT project survive, despite an apparent lack of success. Our empirical material is based on Norwegian telemedicine. Through a case study, we take an in-depth look into the history of one particular telemedical initiative and highlight how ICT projects matter on a managerial level. Our analysis reveals how management tasks were delegated to the ICT project, which thus contributed to four processes of organisational control: allocating resources, generating and managing enthusiasm, system correction and aligning local practice and national policies. We argue that the innovation project in itself can be considered an innovation that has become normalised in health care, not in clinical, but in management work. In everyday management, the ICT project appears to be a convenient tool suited to ease the tensions between state regulatory practices and claims of professional autonomy that arise in the wake of new public management reforms. Separating project management and funding from routine practice handles the conceptualised heterogeneity between innovation and routine within contemporary health care delivery. Whilst this separation eases the execution of both normal routines and innovative projects, it also delays expected diffusion of technology.

  13. Improvement in quality of hospital care during accreditation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bie Bogh, Søren; Falstie-Jensen, Anne Mette; Hollnagel, Erik;


    OBJECTIVE: To assess changes over time in quality of hospital care in relation to the first accreditation cycle in Denmark. DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: We performed a multi-level, longitudinal, stepped-wedge, nationwide study of process performance measures to evaluate the impact of a manda......OBJECTIVE: To assess changes over time in quality of hospital care in relation to the first accreditation cycle in Denmark. DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: We performed a multi-level, longitudinal, stepped-wedge, nationwide study of process performance measures to evaluate the impact...... of a mandatory accreditation programme in all Danish public hospitals. Patient-level data (n = 1 624 518 processes of care) on stroke, heart failure, ulcer, diabetes, breast cancer and lung cancer care were obtained from national clinical quality registries. INTERVENTION: The Danish Healthcare Quality Programme...... was introduced in 2009, aiming to create a framework for continuous quality improvement. MAIN OUTCOME: Changes in week-by-week trends of hospital care during the study period of 269 weeks prior to, during and post-accreditation. RESULTS: The quality of hospital care improved over time throughout the study period...

  14. 38 CFR 3.23 - Improved pension rates-Veterans and surviving spouses. (United States)


    ... quality of life. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501) Cross References: Improved pension. See § 3.1(w). Child. See... income of the veteran or surviving spouse. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1521, 1541) (c) Mexican border period and World War I veterans. The applicable maximum annual rate payable to a Mexican border period...

  15. Alpha (1,2)-fucosyltransferase M307A polymorphism improves piglet survival. (United States)

    Kim, Kyungtae; Nguyen, Dinh Truong; Choi, Minkyung; Kim, Jin-Hoi; Seo, Han Geuk; Dadi, Hailu; Cha, Se-Yeoun; Seo, Kunho; Lee, Yun-Mi; Kim, Jong-Joo; Park, Chankyu


    To confirm the beneficial effects of alpha (1,2)-fucosyltransferase (FUT1) M307 (A) on piglet survival on commercial farms, we performed PCR-RFLP analysis of FUT1 M307 in successfully marketed (n = 245) and disease affected/deceased pigs during weaning (n = 252) at a commercial farm. We also evaluated the FUT1 genotypes of 190 healthy pigs from three different genetic backgrounds. The distribution of genotypes differed between the successfully marketed and disease affected/deceased pig groups. The frequency of the A allele, associated with resistance to edema and post-weaning diarrhea, was higher in the post-weaning survival group (0.21) than in the non-survival group (0.16, P piglet survival between AA and GG genotypes was 1.98; thus, piglet survival for individuals with the AA genotype was almost two-fold greater than for GG individuals. The FUT1 gene polymorphism can be used as an effective marker for selection programs to improve post-weaning piglet survival.

  16. Interact to survive: Phyllobacterium brassicacearum improves Arabidopsis tolerance to severe water deficit and growth recovery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justine Bresson

    Full Text Available Mutualistic bacteria can alter plant phenotypes and confer new abilities to plants. Some plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR are known to improve both plant growth and tolerance to multiple stresses, including drought, but reports on their effects on plant survival under severe water deficits are scarce. We investigated the effect of Phyllobacterium brassicacearum STM196 strain, a PGPR isolated from the rhizosphere of oilseed rape, on survival, growth and physiological responses of Arabidopsis thaliana to severe water deficits combining destructive and non-destructive high-throughput phenotyping. Soil inoculation with STM196 greatly increased the survival rate of A. thaliana under several scenarios of severe water deficit. Photosystem II efficiency, assessed at the whole-plant level by high-throughput fluorescence imaging (Fv/Fm, was related to the probability of survival and revealed that STM196 delayed plant mortality. Inoculated surviving plants tolerated more damages to the photosynthetic tissues through a delayed dehydration and a better tolerance to low water status. Importantly, STM196 allowed a better recovery of plant growth after rewatering and stressed plants reached a similar biomass at flowering than non-stressed plants. Our results highlight the importance of plant-bacteria interactions in plant responses to severe drought and provide a new avenue of investigations to improve drought tolerance in agriculture.

  17. Prior infection does not improve survival against the amphibian disease Chytridiomycosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott D Cashins

    Full Text Available Many amphibians have declined globally due to introduction of the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd. Hundreds of species, many in well-protected habitats, remain as small populations at risk of extinction. Currently the only proven conservation strategy is to maintain species in captivity to be reintroduced at a later date. However, methods to abate the disease in the wild are urgently needed so that reintroduced and wild animals can survive in the presence of Bd. Vaccination has been widely suggested as a potential strategy to improve survival. We used captive-bred offspring of critically endangered booroolong frogs (Litoria booroolongensis to test if vaccination in the form of prior infection improves survival following re exposure. We infected frogs with a local Bd isolate, cleared infection after 30 days (d using itraconazole just prior to the onset of clinical signs, and then re-exposed animals to Bd at 110 d. We found prior exposure had no effect on survival or infection intensities, clearly showing that real infections do not stimulate a protective adaptive immune response in this species. This result supports recent studies suggesting Bd may evade or suppress host immune functions. Our results suggest vaccination is unlikely to be useful in mitigating chytridiomycosis. However, survival of some individuals from all experimental groups indicates existence of protective innate immunity. Understanding and promoting this innate resistance holds potential for enabling species recovery.

  18. Improving organisational systems for diabetes care in Australian Indigenous communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robinson Gary


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Indigenous Australians experience disproportionately high prevalence of, and morbidity and mortality from diabetes. There is an urgent need to understand how Indigenous primary care systems are organised to deliver diabetes services to those most in need, to monitor the quality of diabetes care received by Indigenous people, and to improve systems for better diabetes care. Methods The intervention featured two annual cycles of assessment, feedback workshops, action planning, and implementation of system changes in 12 Indigenous community health centres. Assessment included a structured review of health service systems and audit of clinical records. Main process of care measures included adherence to guideline-scheduled services and medication adjustment. Main patient outcome measures were HbA1c, blood pressure and total cholesterol levels. Results There was good engagement of health centre staff, with significant improvements in system development over the study period. Adherence to guideline-scheduled processes improved, including increases in 6 monthly testing of HbA1c from 41% to 74% (Risk ratio 1.93, 95% CI 1.71–2.10, 3 monthly checking of blood pressure from 63% to 76% (1.27, 1.13–1.37, annual testing of total cholesterol from 56% to 74% (1.36, 1.20–1.49, biennial eye checking by a ophthalmologist from 34% to 54% (1.68, 1.39–1.95, and 3 monthly feet checking from 20% to 58% (3.01, 2.52–3.47. Medication adjustment rates following identification of elevated HbA1c and blood pressure were low, increasing from 10% to 24%, and from 13% to 21% respectively at year 1 audit. However, improvements in medication adjustment were not maintained at the year 2 follow-up. Mean HbA1c value improved from 9.3 to 8.9% (mean difference -0.4%, 95% CI -0.7;-0.1, but there was no improvement in blood pressure or cholesterol control. Conclusion This quality improvement (QI intervention has proved to be highly acceptable in the

  19. Improving perioperative care for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis patients: the impact of a multidisciplinary care approach (United States)

    Borden, Timothy C; Bellaire, Laura L; Fletcher, Nicholas D


    The complex nature of the surgical treatment of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) requires a wide variety of health care providers. A well-coordinated, multidisciplinary team approach to the care of these patients is essential for providing high-quality care. This review offers an up-to-date overview of the numerous interventions and safety measures for improving outcomes after AIS surgery throughout the perioperative phases of care. Reducing the risk of potentially devastating and costly complications after AIS surgery is the responsibility of every single member of the health care team. Specifically, this review will focus on the perioperative measures for preventing surgical site infections, reducing the risk of neurologic injury, minimizing surgical blood loss, and preventing postoperative complications. Also, the review will highlight the postoperative protocols that emphasize early mobilization and accelerated discharge. PMID:27695340

  20. Antenatal care strengthening for improved quality of care in Jimma, Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villadsen, Sarah Fredsted; Negussie, Dereje; GebreMariam, Abebe


    increased priority of ANC among health care providers. The organizational structure of the facilities and lack of continuity in care provision turned out to be a major challenge for implementation. There was a positive effect of the intervention on health education on danger signs during pregnancy (OR: 3...... of intervention on various outcomes was significantly modified by maternal education. CONCLUSION: The quality of care can be improved in some important aspects with limited resources. Moreover, the study provides strategic perspectives on how to facilitate improved quality of ANC.......BACKGROUND: Interventions for curing most diseases and save lives of pregnant and delivering women exist, yet the power of health systems to deliver them to those in most need is not sufficient. The aims of this study were to design a participatory antenatal care (ANC) strengthening intervention...

  1. Training in data definitions improves quality of intensive care data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arts, DGT; Bosman, RJ; de Jonge, E; Joore, JCA; de Keizer, NF


    Background Our aim was to assess the contribution of training in data definitions and data extraction guidelines to improving quality of data for use in intensive care scoring systems such as the Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE) II and Simplified Acute Physiology Score (SAPS)

  2. [Robotics and improvement of the quality of geriatric care]. (United States)

    Ettore, Éric; Wyckaert, Emeline; David, Renaud; Robert, Philippe; Guérin, Olivier; Prate, Frédéric


    New technologies offer innovations to improve the care of the elderly with Alzheimer's or and other forms of dementia. Robots, endowed with features such as monitoring of physiological parameters, cognitive training or occupational therapy, have appeared. They are not, however, intended to replace humans. Still underutilized, these robots are in development, much like the digital literacy of the elderly.

  3. How to Improve the Survival of Transplanted Mesenchymal Stem Cell in Ischemic Heart?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liangpeng Li


    Full Text Available Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC is an intensely studied stem cell type applied for cardiac repair. For decades, the preclinical researches on animal model and clinical trials have suggested that MSC transplantation exerts therapeutic effect on ischemic heart disease. However, there remain major limitations to be overcome, one of which is the very low survival rate after transplantation in heart tissue. Various strategies have been tried to improve the MSC survival, and many of them showed promising results. In this review, we analyzed the studies in recent years to summarize the methods, effects, and mechanisms of the new strategies to address this question.

  4. Does Glucagon Improve Survival in a Porcine (Sus Scrofa) of Adult Asphyxial Cardiac Arrest in Addition to Standard Epinephrine Therapy? (United States)


    UDIIILI: oa. I..UN I ItA!.. I NUMDI:It Does Glucagon improve survival in a porcine (Sus Scrofa ) of adult asphyxial cardiac arrest in addition to...EXPIRATION DATE: 25 Mar 13 PROTOCOL TITLE: Does Glucagon Improve Survival in a Porcine (Sus scrofa ) Model of Adult Asphyxial Cardiac Arrest in Addition...Additions: Deletions: 2 Protocol No: A-2007-03 Protocol Title: Does Glucagon Improve Survival in a Porcine (Sus scrofa ) Model of Adult Asphyxial

  5. Improving regional variation using quality of care measures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott A Berkowitz


    Full Text Available Scott A Berkowitz1, Gary Gerstenblith1, Robert Herbert2, Gerard Anderson1,21Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA; 2Center for Hospital Finance and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USAAbstract: There is significant regional variability in the quality of care provided in the United States. This article compares regional performance for three measures that focus on transitions in care, and the care of patients with multiple conditions. Admissions for people with ambulatory care-sensitive conditions, hospital readmissions within 30 days of discharge, and compliance with practice guidelines for people with three chronic conditions (congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and diabetes were analyzed using data drawn from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Standard Analytic Files for 5% of a 2004 national sample of Medicare beneficiaries which was divided by hospital referral regions and regional performance. There were significant regional differences in performance which we hypothesize could be improved through better care coordination and system management.Keywords: performance, quality, chronic condition, ambulatory care, sensitive conditions, readmissions

  6. Cancer survival in the elderly: Effects of socio-economic factors and health care system features (ELDCARE project)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Vercelli (Marina); R. Lillini (Roberto); R. Capocaccia (Riccardo); A. Micheli; J.W.W. Coebergh (Jan Willem); M.J. Quinn (M.); C. Martinez-Garcia (Carmen); A. Quaglia (Alberto); W. Oberaigner; J. Ajmová (J.); T. Aareleid (T.); J. Palo (Jukka); T. Hakulinen (Timo); P. Grosclaude (P.); H. Ziegler (H.); L. Tryggvadottir (Laufey); F. Langmark (F.); A. Andersen; M. Bielska-Lasota (Magdalena); M.A. Pinheiro (Magda Avelar); I. Pleško (I.); V. Pompe-Kirn (V.); P. Ecimovic (P.); T. Möller (Thomas); J.-M. Lutz (J.)


    textabstractThe purpose of the ELDCARE project is to study differences in cancer survival for elderly patients by country, taking into account the socio-economic conditions and the characteristics of health care systems at the ecological level. Fifty-three European cancer registries, from 19 countri

  7. Improving Quality of Emergency Care Through Integration of Mental Health. (United States)

    Okafor, Martha; Wrenn, Glenda; Ede, Victor; Wilson, Nana; Custer, William; Risby, Emile; Claeys, Michael; Shelp, Frank E; Atallah, Hany; Mattox, Gail; Satcher, David


    The goal of this study was to better integrate emergency medical and psychiatric care at a large urban public hospital, identify impact on quality improvement metrics, and reduce healthcare cost. A psychiatric fast track service was implemented as a quality improvement initiative. Data on disposition from the emergency department from January 2011 to May 2012 for patients impacted by the pilot were analyzed. 4329 patients from January 2011 to August 2011 (pre-intervention) were compared with 4867 patients from September 2011 to May 2012 (intervention). There was a trend of decline on overall quality metrics of time to triage and time from disposition to discharge. The trend analysis of the psychiatric length of stay and use of restraints showed significant reductions. Integrated emergency care models are evidence-based approach to ensuring that patients with mental health needs receive proper and efficient treatment. Results suggest that this may also improve overall emergency department's throughput.

  8. Improving nurse documentation and record keeping in stoma care. (United States)

    Law, Lesley; Akroyd, Karen; Burke, Linda

    Evidence suggests that nurse documentation is often inconsistent and lacks a coherent and standardized approach. This article reports on research into the use of nurse documentation on a stoma care ward in a large London hospital, and explores the factors that may affect the process of record keeping by nursing staff. This study uses stoma care as a case study to explore the role of documentation on the ward, focusing on how this can be improved. It is based on quantitative and qualitative methods. The medical notes of 56 patients were analysed and in addition, focus groups with a number of nurses were undertaken. Quantitative findings indicate that although 80% of patients had a chart filed in their medical notes, only a small portion of the form was completed by nursing staff. Focus group findings indicate that this is because forms lacked standardization and because the language used was often ambiguous. Staff also felt that such documentation was not viewed by other nurses and so, was not effective in improving patient care. As a result of this study, significant improvements have been made to documentation used on the stoma care ward. This is an important exploration of record keeping within nursing in the context of the Nursing and Midwifery Council's emphasis on the importance of documentation in achieving effective patient outcomes.

  9. Parathyroid carcinoma survival: improvements in the era of intact parathyroid hormone monitoring?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steve R. Martinez


    Full Text Available The intact parathyroid hormone (iPTH assay is a critical test in the diagnosis and management of PTH-mediated hypercalcemia, including parathyroid carcinoma (PCa. We hypothesized that the survival of patients diagnosed with PCa has improved since adoption of the iPTH assay into clinical practice. We identified all confirmed cases of PCa within the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results database from 1973 to 2006. Patients were categorized into two eras based upon introduction of the iPTH assay: 1973 to 1997 (era I and 1997 to 2006 (era II, when the iPTH assay was in standard use. We estimated overall survival (OS and disease-specific survival (DSS using the Kaplan-Meier method, with differences among survival curves assessed via log rank. Multivariate Cox proportional hazards models compared the survival rates between treatment eras while controlling for patient age, sex, race/ethnicity, tumor size, nodal status, extent of disease, and type of surgery. Multivariate models included patients undergoing potentially curative surgery and excluded those with dis- tant metastases. Risks of overall and disease-specific mortality were reported as hazard ratios with 95% confidence intervals. Study criteria were met by 370 patients. Median survival was 15.6 years. Five-year rates of OS and DSS were 78% and 88% for era I and 82% and 96% for era II. On multivariate analysis, age, black race, and unknown extent of disease predicted an increased risk of death from any cause. Treatment era did not predict OS. No factor predicted PCa-specific mortality. In multivariate analysis, neither OS nor DSS have improved in the current era that utilizes iPTH for the detection and management of PCa.

  10. Impact of on-site care, prehospital time, and level of in-hospital care on survival in severely injured patients. (United States)

    Sampalis, J S; Lavoie, A; Williams, J I; Mulder, D S; Kalina, M


    A sample of 360 severely injured patients was selected from a cohort of 8007 trauma victims followed prospectively from the time of injury to death or discharge. A case referent study was used to test the association between on-site care, total prehospital time, and level of care at the receiving hospital with short-term survival. Multiple logistic regression analyses showed that use of Advanced Life Support (ALS) at the scene was not associated with survival, whereas treatment at a level I compatible hospital was associated with a 38% reduction in the odds of dying, which approached statistical significance. Total prehospital time over 60 minutes was associated with a statistically significant adjusted relative odds of dying (OR = 3.0). The results of this study support the need for regionalization of trauma care and fail to show a benefit associated with ALS.

  11. Improving pain care through implementation of the Stepped Care Model at a multisite community health center (United States)

    Anderson, Daren R; Zlateva, Ianita; Coman, Emil N; Khatri, Khushbu; Tian, Terrence; Kerns, Robert D


    Purpose Treating pain in primary care is challenging. Primary care providers (PCPs) receive limited training in pain care and express low confidence in their knowledge and ability to manage pain effectively. Models to improve pain outcomes have been developed, but not formally implemented in safety net practices where pain is particularly common. This study evaluated the impact of implementing the Stepped Care Model for Pain Management (SCM-PM) at a large, multisite Federally Qualified Health Center. Methods The Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services framework guided the implementation of the SCM-PM. The multicomponent intervention included: education on pain care, new protocols for pain assessment and management, implementation of an opioid management dashboard, telehealth consultations, and enhanced onsite specialty resources. Participants included 25 PCPs and their patients with chronic pain (3,357 preintervention and 4,385 postintervention) cared for at Community Health Center, Inc. Data were collected from the electronic health record and supplemented by chart reviews. Surveys were administered to PCPs to assess knowledge, attitudes, and confidence. Results Providers’ pain knowledge scores increased to an average of 11% from baseline; self-rated confidence in ability to manage pain also increased. Use of opioid treatment agreements and urine drug screens increased significantly by 27.3% and 22.6%, respectively. Significant improvements were also noted in documentation of pain, pain treatment, and pain follow-up. Referrals to behavioral health providers for patients with pain increased by 5.96% (P=0.009). There was no significant change in opioid prescribing. Conclusion Implementation of the SCM-PM resulted in clinically significant improvements in several quality of pain care outcomes. These findings, if sustained, may translate into improved patient outcomes. PMID:27881926

  12. Developing Strategies to Improve Advance Care Planning in Long Term Care Homes: Giving Voice to Residents and Their Family Members


    Kimberly Ramsbottom; Mary Lou Kelley


    Long term care (LTC) homes, also known as residential care homes, commonly care for residents until death, making palliative care and advance care planning (ACP) important elements of care. However, limited research exists on ACP in LTC. In particular, research giving voice to family members and substitute decision makers is lacking. The objective of this research was to understand experiences, perspectives, and preferences to guide quality improvement of ACP in LTC. This qualitative descript...

  13. Point-of-care technology: integration for improved delivery of care. (United States)

    Gregory, Debbie; Buckner, Martha


    The growing complexity of technology, equipment, and devices involved in patient care delivery can be staggering and overwhelming. Technology is intended to be a tool to help clinicians, but it can also be a frustrating hindrance if not thoughtfully planned and strategically aligned. Critical care nurses are key partners in the collaborations needed to improve safety and quality through health information technology (IT). Nurses must advocate for systems that are interoperable and adapted to the context of care experiences. The involvement and collaboration between clinicians, information technology specialists, biomedical engineers, and vendors has never been more relevant and applicable. Working together strategically with a shared vision can effectively provide a seamless clinical workflow, maximize technology investments, and ultimately improve patient care delivery and outcomes. Developing a strategic integrated clinical and IT roadmap is a critical component of today's health care environment. How can technology strategy be aligned from the executive suite to the bedside caregiver? What is the model for using clinical workflows to drive technology adoption? How can the voice of the critical care nurse strengthen this process? How can success be assured from the initial assessment and selection of technology to a sustainable support model? What is the vendor's role as a strategic partner and "co-caregiver"?

  14. Pleural mesothelioma: management updates and nursing initiatives to improve patient care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lehto RH


    Full Text Available Rebecca H LehtoCollege of Nursing, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USAAbstract: Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a relatively rare but aggressive malignancy that is primarily associated with occupational asbestos exposure. While treatment options for mesothelioma have expanded, the disease carries a poor prognosis, with a median of 8 months to 1 year of survival postdiagnosis. This article synthesizes current disease-management practices, including the diagnostic workup, treatment modalities, emerging therapies, and symptom management, and identifies comprehensive nursing strategies that result in the best care based on updated evidence. Multidisciplinary coordination, palliative care initiation, survivorship, and end-of-life care are discussed. Findings may be applied in clinical environments as a resource to help nurses better understand treatment options and care for patients facing malignant pleural mesothelioma. Recommendations for future research are made to move nursing science forward and to improve patient well-being and health-related quality-of-life outcomes for patients and their family members.Keywords: pleural mesothelioma, cancer, symptom management, evidence-based care

  15. Improving Midwifery Care in Ugandan Public Hospitals: The Midwives’ Perspective (United States)

    Nabirye, Rose C.; Beinempaka, Florence; Okene, Cindrella; Groves, Sara


    Background A serious shortage of nurses and midwives in public hospitals has been reported in Uganda. In addition, over 80% of the nurses and midwives working in public hospitals have been found to have job stress and only 17% to be satisfied on the job. Stress and lack of job satisfaction affect quality of nursing and midwifery care and puts patients’ lives at risk. This is coupled with rampant public outcry about the deteriorating nursing and midwifery care in Ugandan public hospitals. Objective To explore factors that result in poor quality of midwifery care and strategies to improve this care from the perspective of the midwives. Method It was a qualitative exploratory design. Participants were midwives and their supervisors working in four Regional Referral hospitals in Uganda. Data was collected by FGDs and KIIs. Content analysis was used to analyze the transcribed data from the voice recordings. Results Four major themes emerged from the study. They were organizational (poor work environment and lack of materials/equipment), professional (midwives’ attitudes, lack of supervision), public/consumer issues (interference) and policy issues (remuneration, promotion and retirement). Conclusions and implications for Practice Midwives love their work but they need support to provide quality care. Continuous neglect of midwives’ serious concerns will lead to more shortages as more dissatisfied midwives leave service.

  16. Alma-Ata: Rebirth and Revision 6 Interventions to address maternal, newborn, and child survival: what difference can integrated primary health care strategies make? (United States)

    Bhutta, Zulfiqar A; Ali, Samana; Cousens, Simon; Ali, Talaha M; Haider, Batool Azra; Rizvi, Arjumand; Okong, Pius; Bhutta, Shereen Z; Black, Robert E


    Several recent reviews of maternal, newborn, and child health (MNCH) and mortality have emphasised that a large range of interventions are available with the potential to reduce deaths and disability. The emphasis within MNCH varies, with skilled care at facility levels recommended for saving maternal lives and scale-up of community and household care for improving newborn and child survival. Systematic review of new evidence on potentially useful interventions and delivery strategies identifies 37 key promotional, preventive, and treatment interventions and strategies for delivery in primary health care. Some are especially suitable for delivery through community support groups and health workers, whereas others can only be delivered by linking community-based strategies with functional first-level referral facilities. Case studies of MNCH indicators in Pakistan and Uganda show how primary health-care interventions can be used effectively. Inclusion of evidence-based interventions in MNCH programmes in primary health care at pragmatic coverage in these two countries could prevent 20-30% of all maternal deaths (up to 32% with capability for caesarean section at first-level facilities), 20-21% of newborn deaths, and 29-40% of all postneonatal deaths in children aged less than 5 years. Strengthening MNCH at the primary health-care level should be a priority for countries to reach their Millennium Development Goal targets for reducing maternal and child mortality.

  17. COPD exacerbation care bundle improves standard of care, length of stay, and readmission rates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parikh R


    Full Text Available Raj Parikh,1 Trushil G Shah,2 Rajive Tandon2 1Department of Internal Medicine, 2Department of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA Introduction: COPD is the third leading cause of death in the world. Utilizing care bundles during acute COPD exacerbations results in fewer complications and lower costs. Our aim was to construct a COPD exacerbation care bundle and evaluate the effects on patient care. Methods: We conducted a prospective analysis of 44 patients admitted with a COPD exacerbation to a single tertiary care facility. Primary outcomes included length of stay, readmission rates, and hospital costs. Secondary outcomes included patient education, pulmonologist follow-up, and timeliness of medication administration. Two cohorts were analyzed: those treated with an electronic COPD care bundle (cases; N=22 versus those treated without the care bundle (controls; N=22. Results: Mean length of stay (51.2 vs 101.1 hours in controls; P-value =0.001, 30-day readmission rates (9.1% vs 54.4% in controls; P-value =0.001, and 60-day readmission rates (22.7% vs 77% in controls; P-value =0.0003 decreased in the care bundle group. Ninety-day hospital costs had a significant difference in the care bundle group (US$7,652 vs US$19,954 in controls; P-value =0.044. Secondary outcomes included a 100% rate of COPD inhaler teaching (vs 27.3% in controls; P-value <0.001, 59.1% rate of pulmonologist follow-up after discharge (vs 18.2% in controls; P-value =0.005, and a mean reduction in time to steroid administration (7.0 hours; P-value =0.015 seen in the care bundle cases. Conclusion: Our significant findings coupled with the recent success of standardized algorithms in managing COPD exacerbations stress the importance of enforcing clinical guidelines that can enhance patient care. We demonstrated improved care for COPD exacerbation patients during hospitalizations, thereby decreasing morbidity and the financial

  18. Opioid growth factor improves clinical benefit and survival in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill P Smith


    Full Text Available Jill P Smith1, Sandra I Bingaman1, David T Mauger2, Harold H Harvey1, Laurence M Demers3, Ian S Zagon41Departments of Medicine, 2Public Health Sciences, 3Pathology, and 4Neurosciences and Anatomy, Pennsylvania State University, College of Medicine, Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, PA, USABackground: Advanced pancreatic cancer carries the poorest prognosis of all gastrointestinal malignancies. Once the tumor has spread beyond the margins of the pancreas, chemotherapy is the major treatment modality offered to patients; however, chemotherapy does not significantly improve survival.Objective: Opioid growth factor (OGF; [Met5]-enkephalin is a natural peptide that has been shown to inhibit growth of pancreatic cancer in cell culture and in nude mice. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of OGF biotherapy on subjects with advanced pancreatic cancer who failed chemotherapy.Methods: In a prospective phase II open-labeled clinical trial, 24 subjects who failed standard chemotherapy for advanced pancreatic cancer were treated weekly with OGF 250 μg/kg intravenously. Outcomes measured included clinical benefit, tumor response by radiographic imaging, quality of life, and survival.Results: Clinical benefit response was experienced by 53% of OGF-treated patients compared to historical controls of 23.8% and 4.8% for gemcitabine and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU, respectively. Of the subjects surviving more than eight weeks, 62% showed either a decrease or stabilization in tumor size by computed tomography. The median survival time for OGF-treated patients was three times that of untreated patients (65.5 versus 21 days, p < 0.001. No adverse effects on hematologic or chemistry parameters were noted, and quality of life surveys suggested improvement with OGF. Limitations: Measurements other than survival were not allowed in control patients, and clinical benefit comparisons were made to historical controls.Conclusion: OGF biotherapy improves the

  19. The development of advanced hydroelectric turbines to improve fish passage survival

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cada, Glenn F. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)


    Recent efforts to improve the survival of hydroelectric turbine-passed juvenile fish have explored modifications to both operation and design of the turbines. Much of this research is being carried out by power producers in the Columbia River basin (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the public utility districts), while the development of low impact turbines is being pursued on a national scale by the U.S. Department of Energy. Fisheries managers are involved in all aspects of these efforts. Advanced versions of conventional Kaplan turbines are being installed and tested in the Columbia River basin, and a pilot scale version of a novel turbine concept is undergoing laboratory testing. Field studies in the last few years have shown that improvements in the design of conventional turbines have increased the survival of juvenile fish. There is still much to be learned about the causes and extent of injuries in the turbine system (including the draft tube and tailrace), as well as the significance of indirect mortality and the effects of turbine passage on adult fish. However, improvements in turbine design and operation, as well as new field, laboratory, and modeling techniques to assess turbine-passage survival, are contributing toward resolution of the downstream fish passage issue at hydroelectric power plants.

  20. Improving pain care through implementation of the Stepped Care Model at a multisite community health center

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anderson DR


    Full Text Available Daren R Anderson,1 Ianita Zlateva,1 Emil N Coman,2 Khushbu Khatri,1 Terrence Tian,1 Robert D Kerns3 1Weitzman Institute, Community Health Center, Inc., Middletown, 2UCONN Health Disparities Institute, University of Connecticut, Farmington, 3VA Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven, CT, USA Purpose: Treating pain in primary care is challenging. Primary care providers (PCPs receive limited training in pain care and express low confidence in their knowledge and ability to manage pain effectively. Models to improve pain outcomes have been developed, but not formally implemented in safety net practices where pain is particularly common. This study evaluated the impact of implementing the Stepped Care Model for Pain Management (SCM-PM at a large, multisite Federally Qualified Health Center. Methods: The Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services framework guided the implementation of the SCM-PM. The multicomponent intervention included: education on pain care, new protocols for pain assessment and management, implementation of an opioid management dashboard, telehealth consultations, and enhanced onsite specialty resources. Participants included 25 PCPs and their patients with chronic pain (3,357 preintervention and 4,385 postintervention cared for at Community Health Center, Inc. Data were collected from the electronic health record and supplemented by chart reviews. Surveys were administered to PCPs to assess knowledge, attitudes, and confidence. Results: Providers’ pain knowledge scores increased to an average of 11% from baseline; self-rated confidence in ability to manage pain also increased. Use of opioid treatment agreements and urine drug screens increased significantly by 27.3% and 22.6%, respectively. Significant improvements were also noted in documentation of pain, pain treatment, and pain follow-up. Referrals to behavioral health providers for patients with pain increased by 5.96% (P=0.009. There was no

  1. Quality improvement in radiography in a neonatal intensive care unit

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loovere, L.; Boyle, E.M. [Dept. of Pediatrics, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Blatz, S. [Dept. of Pediactrics, McMaster Children' s Hospital, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Bowslaugh, M.; Kereliuk, M. [Dept. of Radiology, Diagnostic Imaging, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Paes, B. [Dept. of Pediatrics, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario (Canada)], E-mail:


    The primary objective of this study was to ensure that X-rays performed consistently adhere to established technological quality standards and are achieved without compromising patient care while minimizing exposure risks. The secondary objective was to evaluate whether educational sessions targeting areas deemed suboptimal would facilitate improvement. A retrospective, 1-week review of all neonatal X-rays and documentation of clinical information on X-ray requisitions (n = 132) was completed in a tertiary care neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), by a single observer. Standards for X-ray evaluation were defined a priori based on radiographic principles and essential documented medical information for correct interpretation. Targeted areas for improvement were identified and addressed through brief educational sessions and printed pamphlets. The review was repeated after recommendations were implemented. 1 month (n = 93) and 1 year (n = 76) later. Improvements were evident in both the completion of X-ray requisitions and image quality. In particular, there was a statistically significant improvement in requisition legibility (P = 0.019), completeness of the medical history (P < 0.001), reduction in X-ray rotation (P < 0.001), collimation to the specific area of interest (P <0.001), gonadal shielding (P < 0.001), and decrease in monitor leads or artifacts obscuring views (P < 0.001). These improvements were sustained both 1 month and 1 year following the educational sessions. A neonatal X-ray audit is a simple, effective way to evaluate radiographic technique and encourage provision of basic clinical information for diagnostic interpretation by radiologists and neonatologists. As well, structured, collaborative educational sessions between radiology and neonatology staff appear to be a successful and sustainable method to effect overall improvement. (author)

  2. Diagnosing and improving functioning in interdisciplinary health care teams. (United States)

    Blackmore, Gail; Persaud, D David


    Interdisciplinary teams play a key role in the delivery of health care. Team functioning can positively or negatively impact the effective and efficient delivery of health care services as well as the personal well-being of group members. Additionally, teams must be able and willing to work together to achieve team goals within a climate that reflects commitment to team goals, accountability, respect, and trust. Not surprisingly, dysfunctional team functioning can limit the success of interdisciplinary health care teams. The first step in improving dysfunctional team function is to conduct an analysis based on criteria necessary for team success, and this article provides meaningful criteria for doing such an analysis. These are the following: a common team goal, the ability and willingness to work together to achieve team goals, decision making, communication, and team member relationships. High-functioning interdisciplinary teams must exhibit features of good team function in all key domains. If a team functions well in some domains and needs to improve in others, targeted strategies are described that can be used to improve team functioning.

  3. [Continuous nursing education to improve the quality of health care]. (United States)

    Fumić, Nera; Marinović, Marin; Brajan, Dolores


    Health care and today's medical and technical achievements and approved standards of treatment provide comprehensive quality, safety and traceability of medical procedures respecting the principles of health protection. Continuous education improves the quality of nursing health care and increases the effectiveness of patient care, consequently maintaining and enhancing patient safety. Patient health problems impose the need of appropriate, planned and timely nursing care and treatment. In providing quality nursing care, attention is focused on the patient and his/her needs in order to maintain and increase their safety, satisfaction, independence and recovery or peaceful death, so the health and nursing practices must be systematized, planned and based on knowledge and experience. Health and nursing care of patients at risk of developing acute and chronic wounds or already suffering from some form of this imply preventive measures that are provided through patient education, motivation, monitoring, early recognition of risk factors and causes, and reducing or removing them through the prescribed necessary medical treatment which is safe depending on the patient health status. Except for preventive measures, nursing care of patients who already suffer from some form of acute or chronic wounds is focused on the care and treatment of damaged tissue by providing appropriate and timely diagnosis, timely and proper evaluation of the wound and patient general status, knowledge and understanding of the wide range of local, oral and parenteral therapy and treatment, aiming to increase patient safety by preventing progression of the patient general condition and local wound status and reducing the possibility of developing infection or other complications of the underlying disease. In the overall patient management, through nursing process, medical interventions are implemented and aimed to maintain and optimize health status, prevent complications of existing diseases and

  4. Improving critical care discharge summaries: a collaborative quality improvement project using PDSA. (United States)

    Goulding, Lucy; Parke, Hannah; Maharaj, Ritesh; Loveridge, Robert; McLoone, Anne; Hadfield, Sophie; Helme, Eloise; Hopkins, Philip; Sandall, Jane


    Around 110,000 people spend time in critical care units in England and Wales each year. The transition of care from the intensive care unit to the general ward exposes patients to potential harms from changes in healthcare providers and environment. Nurses working on general wards report anxiety and uncertainty when receiving patients from critical care. An innovative form of enhanced capability critical care outreach called 'iMobile' is being provided at King's College Hospital (KCH). Part of the remit of iMobile is to review patients who have been transferred from critical care to general wards. The iMobile team wished to improve the quality of critical care discharge summaries. A collaborative evidence-based quality improvement project was therefore undertaken by the iMobile team at KCH in conjunction with researchers from King's Improvement Science (KIS). Plan, Do, Study, Act (PDSA) methodology was used. Three PDSA cycles were undertaken. Methods adopted comprised: a scoping literature review to identify relevant guidelines and research evidence to inform all aspects of the quality improvement project; a process mapping exercise; informal focus groups / interviews with staff; patient story-telling work with people who had experienced critical care and subsequent discharge to a general ward; and regular audits of the quality of both medical and nursing critical care discharge summaries. The following behaviour change interventions were adopted, taking into account evidence of effectiveness from published systematic reviews and considering the local context: regular audit and feedback of the quality of discharge summaries, feedback of patient experience, and championing and education delivered by local opinion leaders. The audit results were mixed across the trajectory of the project, demonstrating the difficulty of sustaining positive change. This was particularly important as critical care bed occupancy and through-put fluctuates which then impacts on work

  5. Improving the financial viability of primary care health centers. (United States)

    Finkler, S A; Knickman, J R; Hanson, K L


    This article presents findings from a national demonstration program to improve the long-term financial viability of small not-for-profit primary care health centers. The program initiatives and their implementation are described in some detail. A standard pre/post study design was used to measure the impact of the initiatives on general outcome measures, financial ratios, and the utilization of management techniques. Overall, demonstration centers showed improvement over the study period. Notable short-term improvements included significant growth in the volume of patient visits and increased profit. Observed changes also revealed an increased use of sophisticated management techniques, expected to positively affect longer-term financial health. The findings suggest that improving the financial viability of health centers need not be expensive.

  6. Metformin use improves survival of diabetic liver cancer patients: systematic review and meta-analysis (United States)

    Ma, Shu-Juan; Zheng, Yi-Xiang; Zhou, Peng-Cheng; Xiao, Yan-Ni; Tan, Hong-Zhuan


    Metformin has garnered considerable interest as a chemo-preventive and chemo-therapeutic agent given the increased risk of liver cancer among diabetic patients. This work was performed to illustrate the association between metformin use and survival of diabetic liver cancer patients. We conducted a comprehensive literature search of PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, BIOSIS Previews, Cochrane Library from inception to 12 May 2016. Meta-analyses were performed using Stata (version 12.0), with hazard ratios (HRs) and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) as effect measures. Eleven cohort studies involving 3452 liver cancer patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Meta-analyses showed that metformin use was associated with better survival (HR = 0.59; 95% CI, 0.42-0.83; p = 0.002) of liver cancer patients, and the beneficial effect persisted (HR = 0.64; 95% CI, 0.42-0.97; p = 0.035) when the population was restricted to diabetic liver cancer patients. After adjusting for age, etiology, index of tumor severity and treatment of liver cancer, the association between metformin use and better survival of liver cancer patients was stable, pooled HR ranged from 0.47 to 0.57. The results indicated that metformin use improved survival of diabetic liver cancer patients. However, the results should be interpreted with caution given the possibility of residual confounding. Further prospective studies are still needed to confirm the prognostic benefit of metformin use. PMID:27494848

  7. Concurrent chemoradiotherapy improves survival outcome in muscle-invasive bladder cancer

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    Byun, Sang Jun; Kim, Jin Hee; Oh, Young Kee; Kim, Byung Hoon [Dongsan Medical Center, Keimyung University School of Medicine, Daegu (Korea, Republic of)


    To evaluate survival rates and prognostic factors related to treatment outcomes after bladder preserving therapy including transurethral resection of bladder tumor, radiotherapy (RT) with or without concurrent chemotherapy in bladder cancer with a curative intent. We retrospectively studied 50 bladder cancer patients treated with bladder-preserving therapy at Keimyung University Dongsan Medical Center from January 1999 to December 2010. Age ranged from 46 to 89 years (median, 71.5 years). Bladder cancer was the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) stage II, III, and IV in 9, 27, and 14 patients, respectively. Thirty patients were treated with concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CCRT) and 20 patients with RT alone. Nine patients received chemotherapy prior to CCRT or RT alone. Radiation was delivered with a four-field box technique (median, 63 Gy; range, 48.6 to 70.2 Gy). The follow-up periods ranged from 2 to 169 months (median, 34 months). Thirty patients (60%) showed complete response and 13 (26%) a partial response. All patients could have their own bladder preserved. Five-year overall survival (OS) rate was 37.2%, and the 5-year disease-free survival (DFS) rate was 30.2%. In multivariate analysis, tumor grade and CCRT were statistically significant in OS. Tumor grade was a significant prognostic factor related to OS. CCRT is also considered to improve survival outcomes. Further multi-institutional studies are needed to elucidate the impact of RT in bladder cancer.

  8. Rac1 selective activation improves retina ganglion cell survival and regeneration.

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    Erika Lorenzetto

    Full Text Available In adult mammals, after optic nerve injury, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs do not regenerate their axons and most of them die by apoptosis within a few days. Recently, several strategies that activate neuronal intracellular pathways were proposed to prevent such degenerative processes. The rho-related small GTPase Rac1 is part of a complex, still not fully understood, intracellular signaling network, mediating in neurons many effects, including axon growth and cell survival. However, its role in neuronal survival and regeneration in vivo has not yet been properly investigated. To address this point we intravitreally injected selective cell-penetrating Rac1 mutants after optic nerve crush and studied the effect on RGC survival and axonal regeneration. We injected two well-characterized L61 constitutively active Tat-Rac1 fusion protein mutants, in which a second F37A or Y40C mutation confers selectivity in downstream signaling pathways. Results showed that, 15 days after crush, both mutants were able to improve survival and to prevent dendrite degeneration, while the one harboring the F37A mutation also improved axonal regeneration. The treatment with F37A mutant for one month did not improve the axonal elongation respect to 15 days. Furthermore, we found an increase of Pak1 T212 phosphorylation and ERK1/2 expression in RGCs after F37A treatment, whereas ERK1/2 was more activated in glial cells after Y40C administration. Our data suggest that the selective activation of distinct Rac1-dependent pathways could represent a therapeutic strategy to counteract neuronal degenerative processes in the retina.

  9. Improving diabetic foot screening at a primary care clinic: A quality improvement project (United States)

    Allen, Michelle L.; Gunst, Colette


    Background Foot screening is an important part of diabetic care as it prevents significant morbidity, loss of function and mortality from diabetic foot complications. However, foot screening is often neglected. Aim This project was aimed at educating health care workers (HCWs) in a primary health care clinic to increase diabetic foot screening practices. Setting A primary health care clinic in the Western Cape province of South Africa Methods A quality improvement project was conducted. HCWs’ needs were assessed using a questionnaire. This was followed by focus group discussions with the HCWs, which were recorded, transcribed and assessed using a general inductive approach. An intervention was designed based on common themes. Staff members were trained on foot screening and patient information pamphlets and screening tools were made available to all clinic staff. Thirty-two consecutive diabetic patient folders were audited to compare screening in 2013 with that in 2014 after initiation of the quality improvement cycle. Results HCWs’ confidence in conducting foot screening using the diabetic foot assessment questionnaire improved markedly after training. Diabetic foot screening practices increased from 9% in 2013 to 69% in 2014 after the first quality improvement cycle. A strengths, opportunities, aspirations and results (SOAR) analysis showed promise for continuing quality improvement cycles. Conclusion The findings showed a significant improvement in the number of diabetic patients screened. Using strategic planning with appreciative intent based on SOAR, proved to be motivational and can be used in the planning of the next cycle. PMID:27608673

  10. Improving the quality of care for patients with hypertension in Moshupa District, Botswana: Quality improvement cycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathy Kande


    Full Text Available Background: Although there are no prevalence studies on hypertension in Botswana, this condition is thought to be common and the quality of care to be poor.Aim: The aim of this project was to assess and improve the quality of primary care forhypertension.Setting: Moshupa clinic and catchment area, Botswana.Methods: Quality improvement cycle.Results: Two hundred participants were included in the audit. Sixty-eight per cent were women with a mean age of 55 years. In the baseline audit none of the target standards were met. During the re-audit six months later, six out of nine structural target standards, five out of 11 process target standards and one out of two outcome target standards were achieved. Statistically-significant improvement in performance (p < 0.05 was shown in 10 criteria although the target standard was not always met. In the re-audit, the target of achieving blood pressure control (< 140/90 in 70% of patients was achieved.Conclusion: The quality of care for hypertension was suboptimal in our setting. Simple interventions were designed and implemented to improve the quality of care. These interventions led to significant improvement in structural and process criteria. A corresponding significant improvement in the control of blood pressure was also seen.

  11. Improving personal health records for patient-centered care (United States)

    Feldman, Henry J; Ross, Stephen E; Safran, Charles


    Objective To assess the patient-centeredness of personal health records (PHR) and offer recommendations for best practice guidelines. Design Semi-structured interviews were conducted in seven large early PHR adopter organizations in 2007. Organizations were purposively selected to represent a variety of US settings, including medium and large hospitals, ambulatory care facilities, insurers and health plans, government departments, and commercial sectors. Measurements Patient-centeredness was assessed against a framework of care that includes: (1) respect for patient values, preferences, and expressed needs; (2) information and education; (3) access to care; (4) emotional support to relieve fear and anxiety; (5) involvement of family and friends; (6) continuity and secure transition between healthcare providers; (7) physical comfort; (8) coordination of care. Within this framework we used evidence for patient preferences (where it exists) to compare existing PHR policies, and propose a best practice model. Results Most organizations enable many patient-centered functions such as data access for proxies and minors. No organization allows patient views of clinical progress notes, and turnaround times for PHR reporting of normal laboratory results can be up to 7 days. Conclusion Findings suggest patient-centeredness for personal health records can be improved, and recommendations are made for best practice guidelines. PMID:20190063

  12. Hospital medicine (Part 2): what would improve acute hospital care?

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Kellett, John


    There are so many obvious delays and inefficiencies in our traditional system of acute hospital care; it is clear that if outcomes are to be improved prompt accurate assessment immediately followed by competent and efficient treatment is essential. Early warning scores (EWS) help detect acutely ill patients who are seriously ill and likely to deteriorate. However, it is not known if any EWS has universal applicability to all patient populations. The benefit of Rapid Response Systems (RRS) such as Medical Emergency Teams has yet to be proven, possibly because doctors and nurses are reluctant to call the RRS for help. Reconfiguration of care delivery in an Acute Medical Assessment Unit has been suggested as a "proactive" alternative to the "reactive" approach of RRS. This method ensures every patient is in an appropriate and safe environment from the moment of first contact with the hospital. Further research is needed into what interventions are most effective in preventing the deterioration and\\/or resuscitating seriously ill patients. Although physicians expert in hospital care decrease the cost and length of hospitalization without compromising outcomes hospital care will continue to be both expensive and potentially dangerous.

  13. Bypass system modification at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River improved the survival of juvenile salmon (United States)

    Ferguson, J.W.; Sandford, B.P.; Reagan, R.E.; Gilbreath, L.G.; Meyer, E.B.; Ledgerwood, R.D.; Adams, N.S.


    From 1987 to 1992, we evaluated a fish bypass system at Bonneville Dam Powerhouse 2 on the Columbia River. The survival of subyearling Chinook salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha released into the system ranged from 0.774 to 0.911 and was significantly lower than the survival of test fish released into turbines and the area immediately below the powerhouse where bypass system flow reentered the river. Yearling and subyearling Chinook salmon and yearling coho salmon O. kisutch released into the bypass system were injured or descaled. Also, levels of blood plasma cortisol and lactate were significantly higher in yearling and subyearling Chinook salmon that passed through the bypass system than in fish released directly into a net located over the bypass exit. This original system was then extensively modified using updated design criteria, and the site where juvenile fish reentered the river was relocated 2.8 km further downstream to reduce predation on bypassed fish by northern pikeminnow Ptychocheilus oregonensis. Based on studies conducted from 1999 to 2001, the new bypass system resulted in high fish survival, virtually no injuries to fish, fish passage times that were generally similar to water travel times, and mild stress responses from which fish recovered quickly. The mean estimated survival of subyearling Chinook salmon passing through the new bypass system was 0.946 in 2001, which was an usually low-flow year. Survival, physical condition, passage timing, and blood physiological indicators of stress were all useful metrics for assessing the performance of both bypass systems and are discussed. The engineering and hydraulic criteria used to design the new bypass system that resulted in improved fish passage conditions are described.

  14. Application of bacterial lipopolysaccharide to improve survival of the black tiger shrimp after Vibrio harveyi exposure. (United States)

    Rungrassamee, Wanilada; Maibunkaew, Sawarot; Karoonuthaisiri, Nitsara; Jiravanichpaisal, Pikul


    This study investigates an effect of bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) as feed supplement to improve immunity of the black tiger shrimp (Penaeus monodon). LPS was coated to commercial feed pellets and given to the shrimp once or twice a day for 10 days before an exposure with shrimp pathogenic bacterium Vibrio harveyi. The growth rates, percent weight gains, total hemocyte and granulocyte counts and survival rates of shrimp between the LPS-coated pellet fed groups and a control group where shrimp fed with commercial feed pellets were compared. After 10 days of the feeding trials, growth rates were not significantly different in all groups, suggesting no toxicity from LPS supplement. To determine beneficial effect of LPS diets, each group was subsequently exposed to V. harveyi by immersion method and the survival rates were recorded for seven days after the immersion. Regardless of the dosages of LPS, the shrimp groups fed with LPS-coated pellets showed higher survival rates than the control group. There was no significant difference in survival rates between the two LPS dosages groups. In addition to survival under pathogen challenge, we also determine effect of LPS on immune-related genes after 10-day feeding trial. Gene expression analysis in the P. monodon intestines revealed that antilipopolysaccharide factor isoform 3 (ALF3), C-type lectin, and mucine-like peritrophin (mucin-like PM) were expressed significantly higher in a group fed with LPS supplemental diet once or twice a day than in a control group. The transcript levels of C-type lectin and mucin-like PM had increased significantly when LPS was given once a day, while significant induction of ALF3 transcripts was observed when shrimp were fed with LPS twice a day. The up-regulation of the immune gene levels in intestines and higher resistance to V. harveyi of the shrimp fed with LPS provide the evidence for potential application of LPS as an immunostimulant in P. monodon farming.

  15. Nanoshell-mediated photothermal therapy improves survival in a murine glioma model. (United States)

    Day, Emily S; Thompson, Patrick A; Zhang, Linna; Lewinski, Nastassja A; Ahmed, Nabil; Drezek, Rebekah A; Blaney, Susan M; West, Jennifer L


    We are developing a novel treatment for high-grade gliomas using near infrared-absorbing silica-gold nanoshells that are thermally activated upon exposure to a near infrared laser, thereby irreversibly damaging cancerous cells. The goal of this work was to determine the efficacy of nanoshell-mediated photothermal therapy in vivo in murine xenograft models. Tumors were induced in male IcrTac:ICR-Prkdc(SCID) mice by subcutaneous implantation of Firefly Luciferase-labeled U373 human glioma cells and biodistribution and survival studies were performed. To evaluate nanoparticle biodistribution, nanoshells were delivered intravenously to tumor-bearing mice and after 6, 24, or 48 h the tumor, liver, spleen, brain, muscle, and blood were assessed for gold content by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and histology. Nanoshell concentrations in the tumor increased for the first 24 h and stabilized thereafter. Treatment efficacy was evaluated by delivering saline or nanoshells intravenously and externally irradiating tumors with a near infrared laser 24 h post-injection. Success of treatment was assessed by monitoring tumor size, tumor luminescence, and survival time of the mice following laser irradiation. There was a significant improvement in survival for the nanoshell treatment group versus the control (P nanoshell treatment group remained tumor free at the end of the 90-day study period. By comparison, none of the mice in the control group survived beyond 24 days and mean survival was only 13.3 days. The results of these studies suggest that nanoshell-mediated photothermal therapy represents a promising novel treatment strategy for malignant glioma.

  16. A Hyaluronan-Based Injectable Hydrogel Improves the Survival and Integration of Stem Cell Progeny following Transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian G. Ballios


    Full Text Available The utility of stem cells and their progeny in adult transplantation models has been limited by poor survival and integration. We designed an injectable and bioresorbable hydrogel blend of hyaluronan and methylcellulose (HAMC and tested it with two cell types in two animal models, thereby gaining an understanding of its general applicability for enhanced cell distribution, survival, integration, and functional repair relative to conventional cell delivery in saline. HAMC improves cell survival and integration of retinal stem cell (RSC-derived rods in the retina. The pro-survival mechanism of HAMC is ascribed to the interaction of the CD44 receptor with HA. Transient disruption of the retinal outer limiting membrane, combined with HAMC delivery, results in significantly improved rod survival and visual function. HAMC also improves the distribution, viability, and functional repair of neural stem and progenitor cells (NSCs. The HAMC delivery system improves cell transplantation efficacy in two CNS models, suggesting broad applicability.

  17. Using a big conversation to improve care quality. (United States)

    Boyd, Maggie

    The Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) compiled a report on the day, in which it noted: "The overriding result was one of inspiration through being heard, having honest, genuine and open dialogue and positively engaging with like-minded people. The event gave many the confidence to try to take things forward and influence others, and there was a sense of the event being an opportunity that gave hope for the future." The next step is to set up a "nursing cabinet"--a stakeholder board that will oversee work to improve "care through the patients' eyes". This will involve health professionals, academics, voluntary organisations and patient groups. Box 1 outlines key actions taken as a result of the event. The report on the day's findings is available on the trust website.

  18. How the probability of presentation to a primary care clinician correlates with cancer survival rates: a European survey using vignettes (United States)

    Harris, Michael; Frey, Peter; Esteva, Magdalena; Gašparović Babić, Svjetlana; Marzo-Castillejo, Mercè; Petek, Davorina; Petek Ster, Marija; Thulesius, Hans


    Objective European cancer survival rates vary widely. System factors, including whether or not primary care physicians (PCPs) are gatekeepers, may account for some of these differences. This study explores where patients who may have cancer are likely to present for medical care in different European countries, and how probability of presentation to a primary care clinician correlates with cancer survival rates. Design Seventy-eight PCPs in a range of European countries assessed four vignettes representing patients who might have cancer, and consensus groups agreed how likely those patients were to present to different clinicians in their own countries. These data were compared with national cancer survival rates. Setting A total of 14 countries. Subjects Consensus groups of PCPs. Main outcome measures Probability of initial presentation to a PCP for four clinical vignettes. Results There was no significant correlation between overall national 1-year relative cancer survival rates and the probability of initial presentation to a PCP (r  = −0.16, 95% CI −0.39 to 0.08). Within that there was large variation depending on the type of cancer, with a significantly poorer lung cancer survival in countries where patients were more likely to initially consult a PCP (lung r = −0.57, 95% CI −0.83 to −0.12; ovary: r = −0.13, 95% CI −0.57 to 0.38; breast r = 0.14, 95% CI −0.36 to 0.58; bowel: r = 0.20, 95% CI −0.31 to 0.62). Conclusions There were wide variations in the degree of gatekeeping between countries, with no simple binary model as to whether or not a country has a “PCP-as-gatekeeper” system. While there was case-by-case variation, there was no overall evidence of a link between a higher probability of initial consultation with a PCP and poorer cancer survival. Key points European cancer survival rates vary widely, and health system factors may account for some of these differences. The data from 14 European

  19. Spica cast care: a collaborative staff-led education initiative for improved patient care. (United States)

    Reed, Cynthia; Carroll, Lee; Baccari, Susan; Shermont, Herminia


    One of the most challenging aspects for nurses caring for incontinent children in spica casts is maintaining healthy skin integrity. Noting an increase in the number of phone calls from parents of discharged children in spica casts concerning diaper rash and skin breakdown, inpatient orthopedics staff nurses lead an interdisciplinary quality improvement and educational initiative. They standardized pediatric spica cast care and education by creating an intranet narrated PowerPoint presentation for staff and parents of children with spica casts. A take-home DVD of this education module is now produced and given to parents, reinforcing nursing discharge teaching and giving parents the opportunity to review these new skills at home as needed. The purpose of this article is to share this experience of improving patient outcomes and empowering other orthopedics nurses to develop creative educational solutions.

  20. American Organization of Nurse Executives Care Innovation and Transformation program: improving care and practice environments. (United States)

    Oberlies, Amanda Stefancyk


    The American Organization of Nurse Executives conducted an evaluation of the hospitals participating in the Care Innovation and Transformation (CIT) program. A total of 24 hospitals participated in the 2-year CIT program from 2012 to 2013. Reported outcomes include increased patient satisfaction, decreased falls, and reductions in nurse turnover and overtime. Nurses reported statistically significant improvements in 4 domains of the principles and elements of a healthful practice environment developed by the Nursing Organizations Alliance.

  1. Issues of therapeutic communication relevant for improving quality of care. (United States)

    Popa-Velea, O; Purcărea, V L


    Communication issues are extensively considered a topic of high interest for improving the efficacy of the therapeutic act. This article aimed to overview several issues of therapeutic communication relevant for improving quality of care. A number of 15 bibliographic resources on these topics published in peer-reviewed journals between 1975 and 2010, and indexed in PubMed, ProQuest and EBSCO databases were examined, to seek for evidence regarding these data. Results highlight a number of communication problems commonly reported in the literature, such as the lack of physician communicational skills or their deterioration, the persistence of an asymmetric therapeutic communicational model, communication obstacles brought by the disease itself or by several variables pertaining to the patient, including specific demographic and psychological contexts. Equally, literature reports ways of improving therapeutic communication, such as optimizing the clinical interview, better time management techniques or assertiveness. Integration of communication training in the bio-psycho-social model of care and monitoring parameters like adherence and quality of life as tools reflecting also a good therapeutic communication can be valuable future approaches of obtaining better results in this area.

  2. Nurses Improving the Care of Healthsystem Elders: creating a sustainable business model to improve care of hospitalized older adults. (United States)

    Capezuti, Elizabeth A; Bricoli, Barbara; Briccoli, Barbara; Boltz, Marie P


    The Nurses Improving the Care of Healthsystem Elders (NICHE) program helps its more than 450 member sites to build the leadership capabilities to enact system-level change that targets the unique needs of older adults and embeds evidence-based geriatrics knowledge into practice. NICHE received expansion funding to establish a sustainable business model for operations while positioning the program to continue as a leader in innovative senior care programs. The expansion program focused on developing an internal business infrastructure, expanding NICHE-specific resources, creating a Web platform, increasing the number of participating NICHE hospitals, enhancing and expanding the NICHE benchmarking service, supporting research that generates evidence-based practices, fostering interorganizational collaboration, developing sufficient diversified revenue sources, and increasing the penetration and level of activity of current NICHE sites. These activities (improved services, Web-based tools, better benchmarking) added value and made it feasible to charge hospitals an annual fee for access and participation. NICHE does not stipulate how institutions should modify geriatric care; rather, NICHE principles and tools are meant to be adapted to each site's unique institutional culture. This article describes the historical context, the rationale, and the business plan that has resulted in successful organizational outcomes, including financial sustainability of the business operations of NICHE.

  3. The national improvement partnership network: state-based partnerships that improve primary care quality. (United States)

    Shaw, Judith S; Norlin, Chuck; Gillespie, R J; Weissman, Mark; McGrath, Jane


    Improvement partnerships (IPs) are a model for collaboration among public and private organizations that share interests in improving child health and the quality of health care delivered to children. Their partners typically include state public health and Medicaid agencies, the local chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and an academic health care organization or children's hospital. Most IPs also engage other partners, including a variety of public, private, and professional organizations and individuals. IPs lead and support measurement-based, systems-focused quality improvement (QI) efforts that primarily target primary care practices that care for children. Their projects are most often conducted as learning collaboratives that involve a team from each of 8 to 15 participating practices over 9 to 12 months. The improvement teams typically include a clinician, office manager, clinical staff (nurses or medical assistants), and, for some projects, a parent; the IPs provide the staff and local infrastructure. The projects target clinical topics, chosen because of their importance to public health, local clinicians, and funding agencies, including asthma, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism, developmental screening, obesity, mental health, medical home implementation, and several others. Over the past 13 years, 19 states have developed (and 5 are exploring developing) IPs. These organizations share similar aims and methods but differ substantially in leadership, structure, funding, and longevity. Their projects generally engage pediatric and family medicine practices ranging from solo private practices to community health centers to large corporate practices. The practices learn about the project topic and about QI, develop specific improvement strategies and aims that align with the project aims, perform iterative measures to evaluate and guide their improvements, and implement systems and processes to support and sustain those improvements

  4. Exenatide improves glucose homeostasis and prolongs survival in a murine model of dilated cardiomyopathy.

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    Arpita Kalla Vyas

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: There is growing awareness of secondary insulin resistance and alterations in myocardial glucose utilization in congestive heart failure. Whether therapies that directly target these changes would be beneficial is unclear. We previously demonstrated that acute blockade of the insulin responsive facilitative glucose transporter GLUT4 precipitates acute decompensated heart failure in mice with advanced dilated cardiomyopathy. Our current objective was to determine whether pharmacologic enhancement of insulin sensitivity and myocardial glucose uptake preserves cardiac function and survival in the setting of primary heart failure. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The GLP-1 agonist exenatide was administered twice daily to a murine model of dilated cardiomyopathy (TG9 starting at 56 days of life. TG9 mice develop congestive heart failure and secondary insulin resistance in a highly predictable manner with death by 12 weeks of age. Glucose homeostasis was assessed by measuring glucose tolerance at 8 and 10 weeks and tissue 2-deoxyglucose uptake at 75 days. Exenatide treatment improved glucose tolerance, myocardial GLUT4 expression and 2-deoxyglucose uptake, cardiac contractility, and survival over control vehicle-treated TG9 mice. Phosphorylation of AMP kinase and AKT was also increased in exenatide-treated animals. Total myocardial GLUT1 levels were not different between groups. Exenatide also abrogated the detrimental effect of the GLUT4 antagonist ritonavir on survival in TG9 mice. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: In heart failure secondary insulin resistance is maladaptive and myocardial glucose uptake is suboptimal. An incretin-based therapy, which addresses these changes, appears beneficial.

  5. Improved survival with an ambulatory model of non-invasive ventilation implementation in motor neuron disease. (United States)

    Sheers, Nicole; Berlowitz, David J; Rautela, Linda; Batchelder, Ian; Hopkinson, Kim; Howard, Mark E


    Non-invasive ventilation (NIV) increases survival and quality of life in motor neuron disease (MND). NIV implementation historically occurred during a multi-day inpatient admission at this institution; however, increased demand led to prolonged waiting times. The aim of this study was to evaluate the introduction of an ambulatory model of NIV implementation. A prospective cohort study was performed. Inclusion criteria were referral for NIV implementation six months pre- or post-commencement of the Day Admission model. This model involved a 4-h stay to commence ventilation with follow-up in-laboratory polysomnography titration and outpatient attendance. Outcome measures included waiting time, hospital length of stay, adverse events and polysomnography data. Results indicated that after changing to the Day Admission model the median waiting time fell from 30 to 13.5 days (p Survival was also prolonged (median (IQR) 278 (51-512) days pre- vs 580 (306-1355) days post-introduction of the Day Admission model; hazard ratio 0.41, p = 0.04). Daytime PaCO2 was no different. In conclusion, reduced waiting time to commence ventilation and improved survival were observed following introduction of an ambulatory model of NIV implementation in people with MND, with no change in the effectiveness of ventilation.

  6. Resveratrol improves survival, hemodynamics and energetics in a rat model of hypertension leading to heart failure.

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    Stéphanie Rimbaud

    Full Text Available Heart failure (HF is characterized by contractile dysfunction associated with altered energy metabolism. This study was aimed at determining whether resveratrol, a polyphenol known to activate energy metabolism, could be beneficial as a metabolic therapy of HF. Survival, ventricular and vascular function as well as cardiac and skeletal muscle energy metabolism were assessed in a hypertensive model of HF, the Dahl salt-sensitive rat fed with a high-salt diet (HS-NT. Resveratrol (18 mg/kg/day; HS-RSV was given for 8 weeks after hypertension and cardiac hypertrophy were established (which occurred 3 weeks after salt addition. Resveratrol treatment improved survival (64% in HS-RSV versus 15% in HS-NT, p<0.001, and prevented the 25% reduction in body weight in HS-NT (P<0.001. Moreover, RSV counteracted the development of cardiac dysfunction (fractional shortening -34% in HS-NT as evaluated by echocardiography, which occurred without regression of hypertension or hypertrophy. Moreover, aortic endothelial dysfunction present in HS-NT was prevented in resveratrol-treated rats. Resveratrol treatment tended to preserve mitochondrial mass and biogenesis and completely protected mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation and PPARα (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α expression. We conclude that resveratrol treatment exerts beneficial protective effects on survival, endothelium-dependent smooth muscle relaxation and cardiac contractile and mitochondrial function, suggesting that resveratrol or metabolic activators could be a relevant therapy in hypertension-induced HF.

  7. PEGylated dendritic nanoarchitechture improves mean survival time of BDF1mice bearing myelogenous k -562 leukemia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ramadoss Karthikeyan; Pureti Madhu Kumar; Palanirajan Vijayaraj Kumar


    Objective:To developing and exploring the use ofPEGylated poly(propylene imine) dendritic architecture for the delivery of an anti leukemic activity ofPrednisolone.Methods:For this study,PEGylated poly(propylene imine) dendritic architecture was synthesized and loaded with Prednisolone and targeted to the ascetic form of myelogenous leukemia k-562 cellines in hybrid miceBDF1, was used as tumor model.Theantileukemic activity was assessed by use of the criterionT/C%, whereT was the mean survival time(MST, days) of the drug treated mice, bearing k-562 leukemia andC- the mean survival time(MST, days) of untreated control animals, bearing the same leukemia cellines.Results:An antileukemic activity of the studiedPrednisolone loaded PEGylatedPolypropyleneimine(PPI) dendrimer was found to have increasing the mean survival time of the k-562 myelogenous leukemia cellines bearingBDF1 mice.The criterion“increase of life span”(ILS%) reached maximally270.1% for the drug loaded dendrimer.Conclusion:The studied dendrimer withPrednisolone showed lower toxicity with improved antileukemic activity in comparison with freePrednisolone.The further experiments in this field are in progress, aiming to design better dendritic formulations, with potential clinical use.

  8. Abiraterone plus prednisone improves survival in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Scott T Tagawa; Himisha Beltran


    In essentially just 1 year's time,we have seen science translated into exciting new therapeutic agents for men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC),1 most recently with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of abiraterone acetate in combination with prednisone.2 While prostate cancer has been known to be highly responsive to surgical or medical castration for well over half a century,3 what was once termed 'hormone refractory' prostate cancer inevitably developed,leading to cancerrelated death.Many consider the introduction of chemotherapy for CRPC initially for symptomatic benefit,then with improvements in survival,a substantial step forward.

  9. Hibernation-Based Therapy to Improve Survival of Severe Blood Loss (United States)


    had more severe outcomes and measures . Therefore, improved outcomes are not associated with a higher dose of BHB/M and in fact would appear...animals survived until end of experiment (Figure 1).   4   Figure 1. Kaplan Meier Curve for observation of Maximum Tolerated Dose (MTD...2X or 4X BHB/M 0 10 20 30 40 50 Ba se lin e Sh oc k 35 LR 1 FR 2 FR 1 90 FR 7 FR 2 0 BHB-2X (n=6) BHB-4X (n=5) BH B co nc en tr at io n

  10. Improved survival in patients obtaining remission of nephrotic range albuminuria in diabetic nephropathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hovind, Peter; Tarnow, Lise; Rossing, Peter


    BACKGROUND: The level of albuminuria is related to progression of diabetic nephropathy, and patients with nephrotic range albuminuria have advanced renal structural changes and the fastest decline in glomerular filtration rate (GFR). We have previously demonstrated that the rate of decline in GFR...... risk of reaching the end point, 1.42 (1.08 to 1.87), P= 0.01. CONCLUSION: Our prospective study suggests that remission of nephrotic range albuminuria in type 1 diabetic patients, induced by aggressive antihypertensive treatment with and without ACE inhibitors, is associated with a slower progression...... in diabetic nephropathy and a substantially improved survival....

  11. Immediate Care of Open Extremity Fractures: Where Can We Improve?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Walton


    Full Text Available Clear guidelines are set by the British Orthopaedic Association (BOA and British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS on the preoperative management of open fractures. This as well as the clinical consequences of poor management of open fractures means the patient workup for surgery is important as well as the timing of surgery. Experience suggests few patients are managed 100% as per the guidelines and we look to test this hypothesis. A retrospective analysis was undertaken of all open long bone fractures (total 133, excluding hand injuries, which presented to a district general hospital over a 5-year period. The implementation of 7 defined key tasks for initial management was recorded. 101 cases were eligible, with the majority of cases (71.4% having initial orthopaedic assessment outside normal working hours. The mean number of tasks completed was 3.23/7. Assessment out of hours was associated with less tasks being implemented but doctor seniority and the presence of polytrauma made no difference to the quality of acute care. Staff involved in the acute care of open fractures require targeted education to improve the delivery of initial preoperative care. We recommend that other centres assess their performance against this data.

  12. Mesenteric lymph duct ligation improves survival in a lethal shock model. (United States)

    Badami, Chirag D; Senthil, Maheswari; Caputo, Francis J; Rupani, Bobby J; Doucet, Danielle; Pisarenko, Vadim; Xu, Da-Zhong; Lu, Qi; Feinman, Rena; Deitch, Edwin A


    The goal of this study was to test the hypothesis that factors released from the gut and carried in the mesenteric lymph contribute to mortality in a lethal gut I/R model. To test this hypothesis, a lethal splanchnic artery occlusion (SAO) shock model was used in male Sprague-Dawley rats. In the first set of experiments, ligation of the mesenteric lymph duct (LDL), which prevents gut-derived factors carried in the intestinal lymphatics from reaching the systemic circulation, significantly improved 24-h survival after a 20-min SAO insult (0% vs. 60% survival; P < 0.05). This increase in survival in the LDL-treated rats was associated with a blunted hypotensive response. Because increased iNOS-induced NO levels have been implicated in SAO-induced shock, we measured plasma nitrite/nitrate levels and liver iNOS protein levels in a second group of animals. Ligation of the mesenteric lymph duct significantly abrogated the SAO-induced increase in plasma nitrite/nitrate levels and the induction of hepatic iNOS (P < 0.05). In an additional series of studies, we documented that LDL increased not only 24-h but also long-term 7-day survival. During the course of these studies, we made the unexpected finding that Sprague-Dawley rats from different animal vendors had differential resistance to SAO, and that the time of the year that the experiments were carried out also influenced the results. Nonetheless, in conclusion, these studies support the hypothesis that factors carried in the mesenteric lymph significantly contribute to the development of irreversible shock after SAO.

  13. Can district nurses and care home staff improve bowel care for older people using a clinical benchmarking tool? (United States)

    Goodman, Claire; L Davies, Sue; Norton, Christine; Fader, Mandy; Morris, Jackie; Wells, Mandy; Gage, Heather


    A quasi-experimental study tested a clinical benchmarking tool (Essence of Care) to improve bowel-related care for older people living in six care homes. In the intervention care homes, district nurses and care home staff used the clinical benchmarking tool to discuss and plan how to improve bowel care for residents. In the control care homes, staff were provided with detailed information about the residents and continence services contact details. The intervention was acceptable to care home and district nursing staff, and possible to incorporate into existing working patterns. The study did not demonstrate a significant reduction in bowel-related problems, although there was evidence in one care home of reduction in episodes of avoidable faecal incontinence. At an individual level of care, there were observable benefits, and examples of person-centred care were prompted through participating in the intervention and improved staff awareness. Clinical benchmarking tools can be used to structure discussion between district nurses and care home staff to review and plan care for residents. However, it takes time to achieve change and embedding this kind of approach requires either robust pre-existing working relationships or the involvement of a facilitator.

  14. Improving Quality of Care in Peptic Ulcer Bleeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenstock, Steffen Jais; Møller, Morten H; Larsson, Heidi


    OBJECTIVES:The treatment of peptic ulcer bleeding (PUB) is complex, and mortality remains high. We present results from a nationwide initiative to monitor and improve the quality of care (QOC) in PUB.METHODS:All Danish hospitals treating PUB patients between 2004 and 2011 prospectively registered...... demographic, clinical, and prognostic data. QOC was evaluated using eight process and outcome indicators, including time to initial endoscopy, hemostasis obtainment, proportion undergoing surgery, rebleeding risks, and 30-day mortality.RESULTS:A total of 13,498 PUB patients (median age 74 years) were included.......10-1.61)), and fewer patients underwent open surgery (4% vs. 6%, RR 0.72 (0.59-0.87)). After controlling for time changes in prognostic factors, rebleeding rates improved (13% vs. 18%, adjusted RR 0.77 (0.66-0.91)). Crude 30-day mortality was unchanged (11% vs. 11%), whereas adjusted mortality decreased...

  15. Improving quality of care in substance abuse treatment using five key process improvement principles. (United States)

    Hoffman, Kim A; Green, Carla A; Ford, James H; Wisdom, Jennifer P; Gustafson, David H; McCarty, Dennis


    Process and quality improvement techniques have been successfully applied in health care arenas, but efforts to institute these strategies in alcohol and drug treatment are underdeveloped. The Network for the Improvement of Addiction Treatment (NIATx) teaches participating substance abuse treatment agencies to use process improvement strategies to increase client access to, and retention in, treatment. NIATx recommends five principles to promote organizational change: (1) understand and involve the customer, (2) fix key problems, (3) pick a powerful change leader, (4) get ideas from outside the organization, and (5) use rapid cycle testing. Using case studies, supplemented with cross-agency analyses of interview data, this paper profiles participating NIATx treatment agencies that illustrate successful applications of each principle. Results suggest that organizations can successfully integrate and apply the five principles as they develop and test change strategies, improving access and retention in treatment, and agencies' financial status. Upcoming changes requiring increased provision of behavioral health care will result in greater demand for services. Treatment organizations, already struggling to meet demand and client needs, will need strategies that improve the quality of care they provide without significantly increasing costs. The five NIATx principles have potential for helping agencies achieve these goals.

  16. Newborn care practices in Pemba Island (Tanzania) and their implications for newborn health and survival. (United States)

    Thairu, Lucy; Pelto, Gretel


    Newborn mortality accounts for about one-third of deaths in children under five. Neglecting this problem may undermine the fourth Millennium Development Goal of reducing child mortality by two-thirds by 2015. This study was conducted in Tanzania, where an estimated 32/1000 infants die within the first 28 days. Our objective was to describe newborn care practices and their potential impact on newborn health. We interviewed two purposive samples of mothers from Pemba Island, a predominantly Muslim community of Arab-African ethnicity, and one of Tanzania's poorest. The first sample of mothers (n = 12) provided descriptive data; the second (n = 26) reported actual practice. We identified cultural beliefs and practices that promote early initiation of breastfeeding and bonding, including 'post-partum seclusion'. We also identified practices which are potentially harmful for newborn health, such as bathing newborns immediately after delivery, a practice motivated by concerns about 'ritual pollution', which may lead to newborn hypothermia and premature breast milk supplementation (e.g. with water and other fluids) which may expose newborns to pathogens. Some traditional practices to treat illness, such as exposing sick newborns to medicinal smoke from burning herbs, are also of concern. It is unclear whether the practice of massaging newborns with coconut oil is harmful or beneficial. Interventions to reduce neonatal mortality need to identify and address the cultural rationales that underlie negative practices, as well as reinforce and protect the beliefs that support positive practices. The results suggest the need to improve use of health services through improving health worker communication skills and social management of patients, as well as by lowering healthcare costs.

  17. Rare disease policies to improve care for patients in Europe. (United States)

    Rodwell, Charlotte; Aymé, Ségolène


    Rare diseases are those with a particularly low prevalence; in Europe, diseases are considered to be rare when they affect not more than 5 in 10000 persons in the European Union. The specificities of rare diseases make the area a veritable public health challenge: the limited number of patients and scarcity of knowledge and expertise single rare diseases out as a distinctive domain of high European added-value. The Orphan Medicinal Product Regulation of 1999 was the first European legislative text concerning rare diseases, followed by many initiatives, including recommendations by the Council of Ministers of the European Union in 2009. These initiatives contributed to the development of rare diseases policies at European and national level aimed at improving care for patients with rare diseases. A review of the political framework at European level and in European countries is provided to demonstrate how legislation has created a dynamic that is progressively improving care for patients with rare diseases. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: "Current Research on the Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinoses (Batten Disease)".

  18. Lessons learnt from a primary care asthma improvement project. (United States)

    Lenney, Warren; Clayton, Sadie; Gilchrist, Francis J; Price, David; Small, Iain; Smith, Judy; Sutton, Emma J


    Asthma is a very common disease that can occur at any age. In the UK and in many other countries it is mainly managed in primary care. The published evidence suggests that the key to improving diagnosis and management lies in better training and education rather than in the discovery of new medications. An asthma improvement project managed through the British Lung Foundation is attempting to do this. The project has three pilot sites: two in England supported by the Department of Health and one in Scotland supported by the Scottish Government. If the project is successful it will be rolled out to other health areas within the UK. The results of this project are not yet available. This article highlights the challenges encountered in setting up the project and may well be applicable to other areas in the UK and to other countries where similar healthcare systems exist. The encountered challenges reflect the complex nature of healthcare systems and electronic data capture in primary care. We discuss the differences between general practices in their ability and willingness to support the project, the training and education of their staff on asthma management, governance issues in relation to information technology systems, and the quality of data capture. Virtually all the challenges have now been overcome, but discussing them should ensure that others become aware of them at an early stage should they wish to undertake similar projects in the future.

  19. Improving patient care through student leadership in team quality improvement projects. (United States)

    Tschannen, Dana; Aebersold, Michelle; Kocan, Mary Jo; Lundy, Francene; Potempa, Kathleen


    In partnership with a major medical center, senior-level nursing students completed a root cause analysis and implementation plan to address a unit-specific quality issue. To evaluate the project, unit leaders were asked their perceptions of the value of the projects and impact on patient care, as well as to provide exemplars depicting how the student root cause analysis work resulted in improved patient outcome and/or unit processes. Liaisons noted benefits of having an RCA team, with positive impact on patient outcomes and care processes.

  20. Dipyridamole treatment is associated with improved renal outcome and patient survival in advanced chronic kidney disease. (United States)

    Hung, Chi-Chih; Yang, Mei-Li; Lin, Ming-Yen; Lin, Hugo You-Hsien; Lim, Lee-Moay; Kuo, Hung-Tien; Hwang, Shang-Jyh; Tsai, Jer-Chia; Chen, Hung-Chun


    Dipyridamole has been shown to decrease proteinuria and improve renal function progression especially in early chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients with glomerulonephropathy. A combination therapy of dipyridamole with aspirin could prevent second strokes in the general population. Whether these effects of dipyridamole are also true in advanced CKD patients and whether dipyridamole could improve renal outcomes or patient survival is unknown. We retrospectively analyzed an observational cohort of 3074 participants with CKD stage 3-5 from southern Taiwan, of whom 871 (28.3%) had received dipyridamole treatment ≥50 mg/d for ≥3 months and more than half of the observation period. The mean age was 63.6 ± 13.4 years and the mean estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was 25.5 mL/min/1.73 m(2). After inverse probability of treatment weighted adjustment by propensity score, there were no differences between the dipyridamole-treated and untreated groups. Dipyridamole treatment was associated with decreased odds for rapid eGFR decline [odds ratio, 0.755; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.595-0.958; p = 0.007] and progression of urine protein-to-creatinine ratio (odds ratio, 0.655; 95% CI, 0.517-0.832; p = 0.002). In survival analysis, the dipyridamole-treated group was also associated with a decreased risk for end-stage renal disease (hazard ratio, 0.847; 95% CI, 0.733-0.980; p = 0.011) and all-cause mortality (hazard ratio, 0.765; 95% CI, 0.606-0.971; p = 0.001) but not for cardiovascular events. Our findings demonstrate that dipyridamole treatment is significantly associated with better renal outcomes and patient survival in patients with CKD stage 3-5. Further investigations are warranted to confirm these independent positive effects.

  1. Human hepatocyte growth factor (hHGF-modified hepatic oval cells improve liver transplant survival.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhu Li

    Full Text Available Despite progress in the field of immunosuppression, acute rejection is still a common postoperative complication following liver transplantation. This study aims to investigate the capacity of the human hepatocyte growth factor (hHGF in modifying hepatic oval cells (HOCs administered simultaneously with orthotopic liver transplantation as a means of improving graft survival. HOCs were activated and isolated using a modified 2-acetylaminofluorene/partial hepatectomy (2-AAF/PH model in male Lewis rats. A HOC line stably expressing the HGF gene was established following stable transfection of the pBLAST2-hHGF plasmid. Our results demonstrated that hHGF-modified HOCs could efficiently differentiate into hepatocytes and bile duct epithelial cells in vitro. Administration of HOCs at the time of liver transplantation induced a wider distribution of SRY-positive donor cells in liver tissues. Administration of hHGF-HOC at the time of transplantation remarkably prolonged the median survival time and improved liver function for recipients compared to these parameters in the other treatment groups (P<0.05. Moreover, hHGF-HOC administration at the time of liver transplantation significantly suppressed elevation of interleukin-2 (IL-2, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α and interferon-γ (IFN-γ levels while increasing the production of IL-10 and TGF-β1 (P<0.05. HOC or hHGF-HOC administration promoted cell proliferation, reduced cell apoptosis, and decreased liver allograft rejection rates. Furthermore, hHGF-modified HOCs more efficiently reduced acute allograft rejection (P<0.05 versus HOC transplantation only. Our results indicate that the combination of hHGF-modified HOCs with liver transplantation decreased host anti-graft immune responses resulting in a reduction of allograft rejection rates and prolonging graft survival in recipient rats. This suggests that HOC-based cell transplantation therapies can be developed as a means of treating severe liver

  2. Improving care quality and preventing maltreatment in institutional care – a feasibility study with caregivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katharin eHermenau


    Full Text Available Institutionalized children in low-income countries often face maltreatment and inadequate caregiving. In addition to prior traumatization and other childhood adversities in the family of origin, abuse and neglect in institutional care are linked to various mental health problems. By providing a manualized training workshop for caregivers, we aimed at improving care quality and preventing maltreatment in institutional care. In Study 1, 29 participating caregivers rated feasibility and efficacy of the training immediately before, directly after, and three months following the training workshop. The results showed high demand, good feasibility, high motivation and acceptance of caregivers. They reported improvements in caregiver-child relationships, as well as in the children’s behavior. Study 2 assessed exposure to maltreatment and the mental health of 28 orphans living in one institution in which all caregivers had been trained. The children were interviewed 20 months before, one month before, and three months after the training. Children reported a decrease in physical maltreatment and assessments showed a decrease in mental health problems. Our approach seems feasible under challenging circumstances and provides first hints for its efficacy. These promising findings call for further studies testing the efficacy and sustainability of this maltreatment prevention approach.

  3. Anti-inflammatory thalidomide improves islet grafts survival and functions in a xenogenic environment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chunguang Chen

    Full Text Available Thalidomide possesses both anti-inflammatory and anti-angiogenic properties. This study investigates its potential application in islet transplantation with a xenogenic transplantation model. Transplantation was performed using C57Bl/6 mice and NMRI nu/nu mice as recipients of porcine islets. Moreover, islet graft vasculature and inflammation were investigated to identify the mechanisms of thalidomide action. In the immunocompetent environment of C57Bl/6 mice, a fast graft rejection was observed. The group treated with thalidomide 200 mg/kg BW per day achieved and maintained euglycemia in the complete observation period for 42 days. The treated mice had more functional islet graft mass with less leukocyte infiltration. The pro-inflammatory TNF-alpha and VEGF content in islet grafted kidneys was significantly lowered by the treatment. By comparison, thalidomide was not effective in improving graft survival in immunocompromised nude mice. It strongly inhibited the VEGF and TNF-alpha-induced endothelial proliferation of isolated pig islets in a dose dependent manner. The magnitude of thalidomide's inhibitory effect was nearly identical to the effect of VEGF- receptor 2 inhibitor SU416 and anti-TNF-receptor 1 neutralizing antibody, and was reversed by sphingosine-1-phosphate. In conclusion, the anti-inflammatory effect of thalidomide improved islet graft survival and function in a transplantation model with a maximum immune barrier.

  4. Significant Improvement in Survival after Unrelated Donor Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation in the Recent Era (United States)

    Majhail, Navneet S; Chitphakdithai, Pintip; Logan, Brent; King, Roberta; Devine, Steven; Rossmann, Susan N; Hale, Gregory; Hartzman, Robert J; Karanes, Chatchada; Laport, Ginna G; Nemecek, Eneida; Snyder, Edward L; Switzer, Galen E; Miller, John; Navarro, Willis; Confer, Dennis L; Levine, John E


    Patients and physicians may defer unrelated donor hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) as curative therapy due to mortality risk associated with the procedure. Therefore, it is important for physicians to know the current outcomes data when counseling potential candidates. To provide this information, we evaluated 15,059 unrelated donor HCT recipients between 2000-2009. We compared outcomes before and after 2005 for four cohorts: age <18 years with malignant diseases (N=1,920), 18-59 years with malignant diseases (N=9,575), ≥60 years with malignant diseases (N=2,194), and non-malignant diseases (N=1,370). Three-year overall survival in 2005-2009 was significantly better in all four cohorts (<18 years: 55% vs. 45%, 18-59 years: 42% vs. 35%, ≥60 years: 35% vs. 25%, non-malignant diseases: 69% vs. 60%, P<0.001 for all comparisons). Multivariate analyses in leukemia patients receiving HLA 7-8/8 matched transplants showed significant reduction in overall and non-relapse mortality in the first 1-year after HCT among patients transplanted in 2005-2009; however, risks for relapse did not change over time. Significant survival improvements after unrelated donor HCT have occurred over the recent decade and can be partly explained by better patient selection (e.g., HCT earlier in the disease course and lower disease risk), improved donor selection (e.g., more precise allele-level matched unrelated donors) and changes in transplant practices. PMID:25445638

  5. Intravenous Immunoglobulin with Enhanced Polyspecificity Improves Survival in Experimental Sepsis and Aseptic Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndromes (United States)

    Djoumerska-Alexieva, Iglika; Roumenina, Lubka; Pashov, Anastas; Dimitrov, Jordan; Hadzhieva, Maya; Lindig, Sandro; Voynova, Elisaveta; Dimitrova, Petya; Ivanovska, Nina; Bockmeyer, Clemens; Stefanova, Zvetanka; Fitting, Catherine; Bläss, Markus; Claus, Ralf; von Gunten, Stephan; Kaveri, Srini; Cavaillon, Jean-Marc; Bauer, Michael; Vassilev, Tchavdar


    Sepsis is a major cause for death worldwide. Numerous interventional trials with agents neutralizing single proinflammatory mediators have failed to improve survival in sepsis and aseptic systemic inflammatory response syndromes. This failure could be explained by the widespread gene expression dysregulation known as “genomic storm” in these patients. A multifunctional polyspecific therapeutic agent might be needed to thwart the effects of this storm. Licensed pooled intravenous immunoglobulin preparations seemed to be a promising candidate, but they have also failed in their present form to prevent sepsis-related death. We report here the protective effect of a single dose of intravenous immunoglobulin preparations with additionally enhanced polyspecificity in three models of sepsis and aseptic systemic inflammation. The modification of the pooled immunoglobulin G molecules by exposure to ferrous ions resulted in their newly acquired ability to bind some proinflammatory molecules, complement components and endogenous “danger” signals. The improved survival in endotoxemia was associated with serum levels of proinflammatory cytokines, diminished complement consumption and normalization of the coagulation time. We suggest that intravenous immunoglobulin preparations with additionally enhanced polyspecificity have a clinical potential in sepsis and related systemic inflammatory syndromes. PMID:26701312

  6. A Count for Quality: Child Care Center Directors on Rating and Improvement Systems (United States)

    Schulman, Karen; Matthews, Hannah; Blank, Helen; Ewen, Danielle


    Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS)--a strategy to improve families' access to high-quality child care--assess the quality of child care programs, offer incentives and assistance to programs to improve their ratings, and give information to parents about the quality of child care. These systems are operating in a growing number of…

  7. 78 FR 29139 - Medicare Program; Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Model 1 Open Period (United States)


    ... participation in Model 1 of the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative. DATES: Model 1 of the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Deadline: Interested organizations must submit a Model 1 Open Period... regarding Model 1 of the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative. For additional information...

  8. Improving Rural Geriatric Care Through Education: A Scalable, Collaborative Project. (United States)

    Buck, Harleah G; Kolanowski, Ann; Fick, Donna; Baronner, Lawrence


    HOW TO OBTAIN CONTACT HOURS BY READING THIS ISSUE Instructions: 1.2 contact hours will be awarded by Villanova University College of Nursing upon successful completion of this activity. A contact hour is a unit of measurement that denotes 60 minutes of an organized learning activity. This is a learner-based activity. Villanova University College of Nursing does not require submission of your answers to the quiz. A contact hour certificate will be awarded after you register, pay the registration fee, and complete the evaluation form online at In order to obtain contact hours you must: 1. Read the article, "Improving Rural Geriatric Care Through Education: A Scalable, Collaborative Project," found on pages 306-313, carefully noting any tables and other illustrative materials that are included to enhance your knowledge and understanding of the content. Be sure to keep track of the amount of time (number of minutes) you spend reading the article and completing the quiz. 2. Read and answer each question on the quiz. After completing all of the questions, compare your answers to those provided within this issue. If you have incorrect answers, return to the article for further study. 3. Go to the Villanova website to register for contact hour credit. You will be asked to provide your name, contact information, and a VISA, MasterCard, or Discover card number for payment of the $20.00 fee. Once you complete the online evaluation, a certificate will be automatically generated. This activity is valid for continuing education credit until June 30, 2019. CONTACT HOURS This activity is co-provided by Villanova University College of Nursing and SLACK Incorporated. Villanova University College of Nursing is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation. OBJECTIVES Describe the unique nursing challenges that occur in caring for older adults in rural areas. Discuss the

  9. Nurse practitioner care improves renal outcome in patients with CKD. (United States)

    Peeters, Mieke J; van Zuilen, Arjan D; van den Brand, Jan A J G; Bots, Michiel L; van Buren, Marjolijn; Ten Dam, Marc A G J; Kaasjager, Karin A H; Ligtenberg, Gerry; Sijpkens, Yvo W J; Sluiter, Henk E; van de Ven, Peter J G; Vervoort, Gerald; Vleming, Louis-Jean; Blankestijn, Peter J; Wetzels, Jack F M


    Treatment goals for patients with CKD are often unrealized for many reasons, but support by nurse practitioners may improve risk factor levels in these patients. Here, we analyzed renal endpoints of the Multifactorial Approach and Superior Treatment Efficacy in Renal Patients with the Aid of Nurse Practitioners (MASTERPLAN) study after extended follow-up to determine whether strict implementation of current CKD guidelines through the aid of nurse practitioners improves renal outcome. In total, 788 patients with moderate to severe CKD were randomized to receive nurse practitioner support added to physician care (intervention group) or physician care alone (control group). Median follow-up was 5.7 years. Renal outcome was a secondary endpoint of the MASTERPLAN study. We used a composite renal endpoint of death, ESRD, and 50% increase in serum creatinine. Event rates were compared with adjustment for baseline serum creatinine concentration and changes in estimated GFR were determined. During the randomized phase, there were small but significant differences between the groups in BP, proteinuria, LDL cholesterol, and use of aspirin, statins, active vitamin D, and antihypertensive medications, in favor of the intervention group. The intervention reduced the incidence of the composite renal endpoint by 20% (hazard ratio, 0.80; 95% confidence interval, 0.66 to 0.98; P=0.03). In the intervention group, the decrease in estimated GFR was 0.45 ml/min per 1.73 m(2) per year less than in the control group (P=0.01). In conclusion, additional support by nurse practitioners attenuated the decline of kidney function and improved renal outcome in patients with CKD.

  10. The Phase of Illness Paradigm: A Checklist Centric Model to Improve Patient Care in the Burn Intensive Care Unit (United States)


    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-13-2-0011 TITLE: The Phase of Illness Paradigm: A Checklist Centric Model to Improve Patient Care in the Burn Intensive...2016 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE “The Phase of Illness Paradigm: A Checklist Centric Model to 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Improve Patient Care in the Burn...shared mental model of patient care amongst clinicians in the BICU and thus enhance distributed cognition (Hutchins 2000) and assist the work of the

  11. Improving patient care through the prism of psychology: application of Maslow's hierarchy to sedation, delirium, and early mobility in the intensive care unit. (United States)

    Jackson, James C; Santoro, Michael J; Ely, Taylor M; Boehm, Leanne; Kiehl, Amy L; Anderson, Lindsay S; Ely, E Wesley


    The intensive care unit (ICU) is not only a place where lives are saved; it is also a site of harm and iatrogenic injury for millions of people treated in this setting globally every year. Increasingly, hospitals admit only the sickest patients, and although the overall number of hospital beds remains stable in the United States, the percentage of that total devoted to ICU beds is rising. These 2 realities engender a demographic imperative to address patient safety in the critical care setting. This article addresses the medical community's resistance to adopting a culture of safety in critical care with regard to issues surrounding sedation, delirium, and early mobility. Although there is currently much research and quality improvement in this area, most of what we know from these data and published guidelines has not become reality in the day-to-day management of ICU patients. This article is not intended to provide a comprehensive review of the literature but rather a framework to rethink our currently outdated culture of critical care by employing Maslow's hierarchy of needs, along with a few novel analogies. Application of Maslow's hierarchy will help propel health care professionals toward comprehensive care of the whole person not merely for survival but toward restoration of pre-illness function of mind, body, and spirit.

  12. Debate on the methods to improve health care. (United States)

    Cairns, J


    In Zambia, free health care is not sustainable, so the community must participate actively in the operation of health services. A well-operated district hospital and health centers within the community must cooperate. A successful cost-effective health system depends on effective leadership of the health care team; use of appropriate technology; delegation of much responsibility to paramedical, nursing, and ancillary staff; and use of the district hospital and its district for postgraduate teaching programs for district health specialists. The health care team consists of medical officers, who are generalists; nurses and midwives; administrators; and an engineer to maintain equipment. Examples of appropriate or intermediate technology include Perkin's traction for most fractures, dynamic skin traction for fracture/dislocations of the elbow in adults or olecranon traction, split skin grafting, musculo-cutaneous or axial flaps, suturing of tendons, spinal anesthesia, draw-over anesthesia, and IV ketamine. In some African countries, including Zambia, medical assistants are trained to deal with some types of general anesthesia. Nurses can be trained to become children's nurses, organizing preventive clinics and being responsible for diagnosis and treatment of all conditions except the most serious. Both medical assistants and nurses can become ophthalmic assistants. Dental therapists can handle many activities usually handled by dentists (e.g., fillings and extractions). Operating nurses can be trained to perform some surgery. In many countries, the training ability of the good district hospital is not used to its potential. The district hospital can form important links by teaching medical students at university centers and the districts. Improvement of health problems in developing countries depends on persons willing to work with the poor and to sacrifice material gain.

  13. Improved nurse-parent communication in neonatal intensive care unit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weis, Janne; Zoffmann, Vibeke; Egerod, Ingrid


    AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To evaluate and adjust systematic implementation of guided family-centred care in a neonatal intensive care unit. BACKGROUND: Family-centred care is valued in neonatal intensive care units internationally, but innovative strategies are needed to realise the principles. Guided...

  14. Trehalose does not improve neuronal survival on exposure to alpha-synuclein pre-formed fibrils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Redmann


    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease is a debilitating neurodegenerative disorder that is pathologically characterized by intracellular inclusions comprised primarily of alpha-synuclein (αSyn that can also be transmitted from neuron to neuron. Several lines of evidence suggest that these inclusions cause neurodegeneration. Thus exploring strategies to improve neuronal survival in neurons with αSyn aggregates is critical. Previously, exposure to αSyn pre-formed fibrils (PFFs has been shown to induce aggregation of endogenous αSyn resulting in cell death that is exacerbated by either starvation or inhibition of mTOR by rapamycin, both of which are able to induce autophagy, an intracellular protein degradation pathway. Since mTOR inhibition may also inhibit protein synthesis and starvation itself can be detrimental to neuronal survival, we investigated the effects of autophagy induction on neurons with αSyn inclusions by a starvation and mTOR-independent autophagy induction mechanism. We exposed mouse primary cortical neurons to PFFs to induce inclusion formation in the presence and absence of the disaccharide trehalose, which has been proposed to induce autophagy and stimulate lysosomal biogenesis. As expected, we observed that on exposure to PFFs, there was increased abundance of pS129-αSyn aggregates and cell death. Trehalose alone increased LC3-II levels, consistent with increased autophagosome levels that remained elevated with PFF exposure. Interestingly, trehalose alone increased cell viability over a 14-d time course. Trehalose was also able to restore cell viability to control levels, but PFFs still exhibited toxic effects on the cells. These data provide essential information regarding effects of trehalose on αSyn accumulation and neuronal survival on exposure to PFF.

  15. Improvement of teamwork in health care through interprofessional education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simin Dragana


    Full Text Available Introduction. Collaboration, within and between healthcare teams, facilitates effective healthcare. Internationally, the development of interprofessional education, as a means to facilitate more effective teamwork in health care, has been recognized for over forty years. Objective. The aim of this paper is to evaluate students' attitudes toward the influence of interprofessional education on improvement of collaboration and teamwork. Methods. The research was conducted by interviewing students at the Medical Faculty in Novi Sad in the form of cross-sectional study. The study sample included students from two undergraduate programmes: School of Nursing (n=52 and Integrated Studies of Medicine (n=53. Students admitted to the research had to be exposed to clinical experience. The instrument used in this study was the Readiness for Interprofessional Learning Scale (RIPLS. Results. As many as 93.3% of students indicated that basics of teamwork skills should be obtained prior to graduation, whereas 96.2% considered that interprofessional education would enable them to improve mutual trust and respect. The majority of interviewees indicated that patients would ultimately benefit if healthcare students worked together to solve patient problems. Multivariate procedures MANOVA p<0.05 and discriminative analysis p<0.05 of students' attitudes toward teamwork and collaboration showed significant differences between the students of medicine and nursing. Conclusion. The students of the Integrated Studies of Medicine and School of Nursing had a positive attitude toward the influence of interprofessional education on the improvement of collaboration and teamwork.

  16. Collaborating With Music Therapists to Improve Patient Care. (United States)

    Palmer, Jaclyn Bradley; Lane, Deforia; Mayo, Diane


    Collaboration between perioperative nurses and music therapists can be beneficial in providing a safe, cost-effective means of managing patients' anxiety and pain and reducing the need for pharmacologic intervention in the perioperative setting. The use of a board-certified music therapist may help to improve patient outcomes, ease nurse workload, and serve as an adjunct therapeutic modality that is enjoyable for both patients and staff members. We conducted a two-year, randomized controlled trial to determine how to best implement a music therapy program, navigate its challenges, and collaborate with nurse colleagues to bring its benefits to surgical patients. This article offers suggestions for alliances between perioperative nursing and music therapy staff members and describes the potential of music therapists to help provide optimal patient care.

  17. Demystifying and improving organizational culture in health-care. (United States)

    Pellegrin, Karen L; Currey, Hal S


    Organizational culture is defined as the shared values and beliefs that guide behavior within each organization, and it matters because it is related to performance. While culture is generally considered important, it is mysterious and intangible to most leaders. The first step toward understanding organizational culture is to measure it properly. This chapter describes methods for measuring culture in health-care organizations and how these methods were implemented in a large academic medical center. Because of the consistent empirical link between the dimension of communication, other culture dimensions, and employee satisfaction, special attention is focused in this area. Specifically, a case study of successful communication behaviors during a major "change management" initiative at a large academic medical center is described. In summary, the purpose of this chapter is to demystify the concept of culture and demonstrate how to improve it.

  18. Significant improvement of survival by intrasplenic hepatocyte transplantation in totally hepatectomized rats. (United States)

    Vogels, B A; Maas, M A; Bosma, A; Chamuleau, R A


    The effect of intrasplenic hepatocyte transplantation (HTX) was studied in an experimental model of acute liver failure in rats with chronic liver atrophy. Rats underwent a portacaval shunt operation on Day -14 to induce liver atrophy, and underwent total hepatectomy on Day 0 as a start of acute liver failure. Intrasplenic hepatocyte or sham transplantation was performed on Day -7,-3, or -1 (n = 4 to 6 per group). During the period following hepatectomy, mean arterial blood pressure was maintained above 80 mm Hg and hypoglycaemia was prevented. Severity of hepatic encephalopathy was assessed by clinical grading and EEG spectral analysis, together with determination of blood ammonia and plasma amino acid concentrations, and "survival" time. Histological examination of the spleen and lungs was performed after sacrifice. Intrasplenic hepatocyte transplantation resulted in a significant improvement in clinical grading in all transplanted groups (p 0.05), HTX at Day -3: 19.7 +/- 3.7 h vs. 6.5 +/- 0.3 h (p ammonia concentrations after total hepatectomy (p spleens after sacrifice showed clusters of hepatocytes in the red pulp. Hepatocytes present in the spleen for 3 and 7 days showed bile accumulation and spots of beginning necrosis. The present data show that in a hard model of complete liver failure in portacaval shunted rats, intrasplenic hepatocyte transplantation is able to prolong "survival" time significantly 2- to 3-fold. The relevance of this observation for human application is discussed.

  19. Single Agent Polysaccharopeptide Delays Metastases and Improves Survival in Naturally Occurring Hemangiosarcoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorothy Cimino Brown


    Full Text Available The 2008 World Health Organization World Cancer Report describes global cancer incidence soaring with many patients living in countries that lack resources for cancer control. Alternative treatment strategies that can reduce the global disease burden at manageable costs must be developed. Polysaccharopeptide (PSP is the bioactive agent from the mushroom Coriolus versicolor. Studies indicate PSP has in vitro antitumor activities and inhibits the growth of induced tumors in animal models. Clear evidence of clinically relevant benefits of PSP in cancer patients, however, is lacking. The investment of resources required to complete large-scale, randomized controlled trials of PSP in cancer patients is more easily justified if antitumor and survival benefits are documented in a complex animal model of a naturally occurring cancer that parallels human disease. Because of its high metastatic rate and vascular origin, canine hemangiosarcoma is used for investigations in antimetastatic and antiangiogenic therapies. In this double-blind randomized multidose pilot study, high-dose PSP significantly delayed the progression of metastases and afforded the longest survival times reported in canine hemangiosarcoma. These data suggest that, for those cancer patients for whom advanced treatments are not accessible, PSP as a single agent might offer significant improvements in morbidity and mortality.

  20. Improving health promotion using quality improvement techniques in Australian Indigenous primary health care

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    Nikki ePercival


    Full Text Available While some areas of clinical health care are becoming adept at implementing continuous quality improvement (CQI projects, there has been limited experimentation of CQI in health promotion. In this study, we examined the impact of a CQI intervention on health promotion in four Australian Indigenous primary health care centres. Our study objectives were to: (a describe the scope and quality of health promotion activities; (b describe the status of health centre system support for health promotion activities; and (c introduce a CQI intervention and examine the impact on health promotion activities and health centres systems over two years. Baseline assessments showed sub-optimal health centre systems support for health promotion and significant evidence-practice gaps. After two annual CQI cycles, there were improvements in staff understanding of health promotion and systems for planning and documenting health promotion activities had been introduced. Actions to improve best practice health promotion, such as community engagement and intersectoral partnerships, were inhibited by the way health centre systems were organized, predominately to support clinical and curative services. These findings suggest that CQI can improve the delivery of evidence based health promotion by engaging front line health practitioners in decision making processes about the design/redesign of health centre systems to support the delivery of best practice health promotion. However, further and sustained improvements in health promotion will require broader engagement of management, senior staff and members of the local community to address organisational and policy level barriers.

  1. Grafts of fetal dopamine neurons survive and improve motor function in Parkinson's disease

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    Lindvall, O.; Brundin, P.; Widner, H.; Rehncrona, S.; Gustavii, B.; Frackowiak, R.; Leenders, K.L.; Sawle, G.; Rothwell, J.C.; Marsden, C.D. (University Hospital, Lund (Sweden))


    Neural transplantation can restore striatal dopaminergic neurotransmission in animal models of Parkinson's disease. It has now been shown that mesencephalic dopamine neurons, obtained from human fetuses of 8 to 9 weeks gestational age, can survive in the human brain and produce marked and sustained symptomatic relief in a patient severely affected with idiopathic Parkinson's disease. The grafts, which were implanted unilaterally into the putamen by stereotactic surgery, restored dopamine synthesis and storage in the grafted area, as assessed by positron emission tomography with 6-L-({sup 18}F)fluorodopa. This neurochemical change was accompanied by a therapeutically significant reduction in the patient's severe rigidity and bradykinesia and a marked diminuation of the fluctuations in the patient's condition during optimum medication (the on-off phenomenon). The clinical improvement was most marked on the side contralateral to the transplant.

  2. Gacyclidine improves the survival and reduces motor deficits in a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

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    Yannick Nicolas Gerber


    Full Text Available Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder typified by a massive loss of motor neurons with few therapeutic options. The exact cause of neuronal degeneration is unknown but it is now admitted that ALS is a multifactorial disease with several mechanisms involved including glutamate excitotoxicity. More specifically, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA-mediated cell death and impairment of the glutamate-transport has been suggested to play a key role in ALS pathophysiology. Thus, evaluating NMDAR antagonists is of high therapeutic interest. Gacyclidine, also named GK11, is a high affinity non-competitive NMDAR antagonist that may protect against motor neuron death in an ALS context. Moreover, GK11 presents a low intrinsic neurotoxicity and has already been used in two clinical trials for CNS lesions. In the present study, we investigated the influence of chronic administration of two doses of GK11 (0.1 and 1 mg/kg on the survival and the functional motor activity of hSOD1G93A mice, an animal model of ALS. Treatment started at early symptomatic age (60 days and was applied bi-weekly until the end stage of the disease. We first confirmed that functional alteration of locomotor activity was evident in the hSOD1G93A transgenic female mice by 60 days of age. A low dose of GK11 improved the survival of the mice by 4.3% and partially preserved body weight. Improved life span was associated with a delay in locomotor function impairment. Conversely, the high dose treatment worsened motor functions. These findings suggest that chronic administration of GK11beginning at early symptomatic stage may be beneficial for patients with ALS.

  3. Improved Survival with T Cell Clonotype Stability After Anti–CTLA-4 Treatment in Cancer Patients (United States)

    Cha, Edward; Klinger, Mark; Hou, Yafei; Cummings, Craig; Ribas, Antoni; Faham, Malek; Fong, Lawrence


    Cytotoxic T lymphocyte–associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4) blockade can promote antitumor T cell immunity and clinical responses. The mechanism by which anti–CTLA-4 antibodies induces antitumor responses is controversial. To determine the effects of CTLA-4 blockade on the T cell repertoire, we used next-generation deep sequencing to measure the frequency of individual rearranged T cell receptor β (TCRβ) genes, thereby characterizing the diversity of rearrangements, known as T cell clonotypes. CTLA-4 blockade in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer and metastatic melanoma resulted in both expansion and loss of T cell clonotypes, consistent with a global turnover of the T cell repertoire. Overall, this treatment increased TCR diversity as reflected in the number of unique TCR clonotypes. The repertoire of clonotypes continued to evolve over subsequent months of treatment. Whereas the number of clonotypes that increased with treatment was not associated with clinical outcome, improved overall survival was associated with maintenance of high-frequency clones at baseline. In contrast, the highest-frequency clonotypes fell with treatment in patients with short overall survival. Stably maintained clonotypes included T cells having high-avidity TCR such as virus-reactive T cells. Together, these results suggest that CTLA-4 blockade induces T cell repertoire evolution and diversification. Moreover, improved clinical outcomes are associated with less clonotype loss, consistent with the maintenance of high-frequency TCR clonotypes during treatment. These clones may represent the presence of preexisting high-avidity T cells that may be relevant in the antitumor response. PMID:24871131

  4. Can survival prediction be improved by merging gene expression data sets?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haleh Yasrebi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: High-throughput gene expression profiling technologies generating a wealth of data, are increasingly used for characterization of tumor biopsies for clinical trials. By applying machine learning algorithms to such clinically documented data sets, one hopes to improve tumor diagnosis, prognosis, as well as prediction of treatment response. However, the limited number of patients enrolled in a single trial study limits the power of machine learning approaches due to over-fitting. One could partially overcome this limitation by merging data from different studies. Nevertheless, such data sets differ from each other with regard to technical biases, patient selection criteria and follow-up treatment. It is therefore not clear at all whether the advantage of increased sample size outweighs the disadvantage of higher heterogeneity of merged data sets. Here, we present a systematic study to answer this question specifically for breast cancer data sets. We use survival prediction based on Cox regression as an assay to measure the added value of merged data sets. RESULTS: Using time-dependent Receiver Operating Characteristic-Area Under the Curve (ROC-AUC and hazard ratio as performance measures, we see in overall no significant improvement or deterioration of survival prediction with merged data sets as compared to individual data sets. This apparently was due to the fact that a few genes with strong prognostic power were not available on all microarray platforms and thus were not retained in the merged data sets. Surprisingly, we found that the overall best performance was achieved with a single-gene predictor consisting of CYB5D1. CONCLUSIONS: Merging did not deteriorate performance on average despite (a The diversity of microarray platforms used. (b The heterogeneity of patients cohorts. (c The heterogeneity of breast cancer disease. (d Substantial variation of time to death or relapse. (e The reduced number of genes in the merged data

  5. Developing Strategies to Improve Advance Care Planning in Long Term Care Homes: Giving Voice to Residents and Their Family Members

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly Ramsbottom


    Full Text Available Long term care (LTC homes, also known as residential care homes, commonly care for residents until death, making palliative care and advance care planning (ACP important elements of care. However, limited research exists on ACP in LTC. In particular, research giving voice to family members and substitute decision makers is lacking. The objective of this research was to understand experiences, perspectives, and preferences to guide quality improvement of ACP in LTC. This qualitative descriptive study conducted 34 individual semistructured interviews in two LTC homes, located in Canada. The participants were 31 family members and three staff, consisting of a front line care worker, a registered nurse, and a nurse practitioner. All participants perceived ACP conversations as valuable to provide “resident-centred care”; however, none of the participants had a good understanding of ACP, limiting its effectiveness. Strategies generated through the research to improve ACP were as follows: educating families and staff on ACP and end-of-life care options; better preparing staff for ACP conversations; providing staff skills training and guidelines; and LTC staff initiating systematic, proactive conversations using careful timing. These strategies can guide quality improvement of palliative care and development of ACP tools and resources specific to the LTC home sector.

  6. 45 CFR 98.51 - Activities to improve the quality of child care. (United States)


    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Activities to improve the quality of child care... the quality of child care. (a) No less than four percent of the aggregate funds expended by the Lead...) Activities to improve the quality of child care services may include, but are not limited to: (i)...

  7. Improving fertility care. The role of guidelines, quality indicators and patients.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mourad, S.M.


    Clinical practice guidelines can help improve the quality of care, and decrease variation in delivered care between settings. However, as guidelines do not implement themselves, efforts should be made to improve current guideline implementation. For clinical fertility care, we performed a large mult

  8. Long-term albumin infusion improves survival in patients with cirrhosis and ascites: An unblinded randomized trial

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Roberto Giulio Romanelli; Paolo Gentilini; Giacomo Laffi; Giorgio La Villa; Giuseppe Barletta; Francesco Vizzutti; Fabio Lanini; Umberto Arena; Vieri Boddi; Roberto Tarquini; Pietro Pantaleo


    AIM: To investigate the effects of long-term albumin administration on survival, recurrence of ascites and onset of other complications.METHODS: One hundred consecutive patients admitted for first-onset ascites were randomized to receive diuretics plus human albumin 25 g/wk in the first year and 25g every two wk thereafter (group 1) or diuretics alone (group 2). The primary endpoint was survival without liver transplantation. Secondary endpoints were recurrence of ascites and occurrence of other complications.RESULTS: Median follow-up was 84 (2-120) mo. Albumin-treated patients had significantly greater cumulative survival rate (Breslow test= 7.05, P= 0.0078) and lower probability of ascites recurrence (51% versus 94%,P<0.0001). Chronic albumin infusion resulted in a mean increase in survival of 16 mo.CONCLUSION: Long-term albumin administration after first-onset ascites significantly improves patients' survival and decreases the risk of ascites recurrence.

  9. 38 CFR 3.712 - Improved pension elections; surviving spouses of Spanish-American War veterans. (United States)


    ... elections; surviving spouses of Spanish-American War veterans. 3.712 Section 3.712 Pensions, Bonuses, and... spouses of Spanish-American War veterans. (a) General. A surviving spouse of a Spanish-American War... and attendance. A surviving spouse of a Spanish-American War veteran who is receiving or entitled...

  10. Options for Improving the Military Child Care System (United States)


    military parents use parental care, our analysis of survey responses revealed that most of these are families headed by an unmarried male military...children while the parent or parents were working or going to school. Parental care (care provided by the mother or father) was an option that the child’s mother , a finding that suggests that at least some single military parents do have other child care options available to them and are

  11. Improving palliative care outcomes for Aboriginal Australians: service providers’ perspectives


    Shahid, Shaouli; Bessarab, Dawn; van Schaik, Katherine D; Aoun, Samar M.; Thompson, Sandra C


    Background: Aboriginal Australians have a lower rate of utilisation of palliative care services than the general population. This study aimed to explore care providers’ experiences and concerns in providing palliative care for Aboriginal people, and to identify opportunities for overcoming gaps in understanding between them and their Aboriginal patients and families. Methods: In-depth, qualitative interviews with urban, rural and remote palliative care providers were undertaken in inpatient a...

  12. Women's Suggestions for Improving Midwifery Care in The Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baas, Carien I.; Erwich, Jan Jaap H. M.; Wiegers, Therese A.; de Cock, T. Paul; Hutton, Eileen K.


    Background: The experience of the care a woman receives during pregnancy and childbirth has an immediate and long-lasting effect on her well being. The involvement of patients and clients in health care has increased over the last decades. The Dutch maternity care system offers an excellent opportun

  13. Communication skills training for health care professionals improves the adult orthopaedic patient's experience of quality of care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgaard, Birgitte; Kofoed, Poul-Erik; Ohm Kyvik, Kirsten


    Scand J Caring Sci; 2012; Communication skills training for health care professionals improves the adult orthopaedic patient's experience of quality of care Rationale:  Despite the fact that communication has become a core topic in health care, patients still experience the information provided...... as insufficient or incorrect and a lack of involvement. Objective:  To investigate whether adult orthopaedic patients' evaluation of the quality of care had improved after a communication skills training course for healthcare professionals. Design and methods:  The study was designed as an intervention study...... limitation. Response rates were comparable to those of other studies. Conclusion:  Patients show increased satisfaction with the quality of health care after professionals have attended a communication skills training course, even when implemented in an entire department. Practice implications:  We recommend...

  14. Improved survival of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and disparities by age, race, and socioeconomic status by decade, 1983–2012 (United States)

    Li, Jie; Hong, Guobin; Li, Dan; Mallampati, Saradhi; Zhou, Xiuling; Zhou, Cuiling; Zhang, Hongyu; Cheng, Zhibin; Shan, Hong; Ma, Haiqing


    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), accounting for the majority of liver cancer, is a highly aggressive malignancy with poor prognosis and therefore adds up the financial burden. Incidence data of HCC in three decades during 1983-2012 were extracted from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database with incidence rates of 1.9, 3.1 and 4.9 per 100,000 respectively. In addition, to evaluate the survival changes in the same period, a total of 63,640 HCC cancer cases were accessed from SEER database. The six-month relative survival rates improved each decade from 31.0% to 42.9% to 57.2% and the higher increase can be seen in the last two decades. More importantly, the disparities of survival among different racial groups and socioeconomic status (SES) were confirmed by the inferiority of survival in Black race and high-poverty group respectively. This research analyzed the incidence and survival data of HCC in the past three decades and may help predict the future trends of incidence and survival. Furthermore, this study may help better design healthcare policies and clinical management programs to balance the disparities of survival between SES groups, races, ages and sexes confirmed in this study and thereby improve the clinical management of HCC. PMID:27486977

  15. Long-term survival results of a randomized phase III trial of vinflunine plus best supportive care versus best supportive care alone in advanced urothelial carcinoma patients after failure of platinum-based chemotherapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bellmunt, J; Fougeray, R; Rosenberg, J E;


    To compare long-term, updated overall survival (OS) of patients with advanced transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium (TCCU) treated with vinflunine plus best supportive care (BSC) or BSC alone, after failure of platinum-based chemotherapy.......To compare long-term, updated overall survival (OS) of patients with advanced transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium (TCCU) treated with vinflunine plus best supportive care (BSC) or BSC alone, after failure of platinum-based chemotherapy....

  16. Social Practices of Juvenile Survival and Mortality: Child Care Arrangements in Mexico City. (United States)

    Gigengack, Roy


    Sketches the problems of urban "street" children in Mexico City, the emergence of collective child care arrangements, and the failure of the state to provide for child welfare. Describes community-based approaches arising in the absence of government action. (SK)

  17. Survival benefit and phenotypic improvement by hamartin gene therapy in a tuberous sclerosis mouse brain model. (United States)

    Prabhakar, Shilpa; Zhang, Xuan; Goto, June; Han, Sangyeul; Lai, Charles; Bronson, Roderick; Sena-Esteves, Miguel; Ramesh, Vijaya; Stemmer-Rachamimov, Anat; Kwiatkowski, David J; Breakefield, Xandra O


    We examined the potential benefit of gene therapy in a mouse model of tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) in which there is embryonic loss of Tsc1 (hamartin) in brain neurons. An adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector (serotype rh8) expressing a tagged form of hamartin was injected into the cerebral ventricles of newborn pups with the genotype Tsc1(cc) (homozygous for a conditional floxed Tsc1 allele) SynI-cre(+), in which Tsc1 is lost selectively in neurons starting at embryonic day 12. Vector-treated Tsc1(cc)SynIcre(+) mice showed a marked improvement in survival from a mean of 22 days in non-injected mice to 52 days in AAV hamartin vector-injected mice, with improved weight gain and motor behavior in the latter. Pathologic studies showed normalization of neuron size and a decrease in markers of mTOR activation in treated as compared to untreated mutant littermates. Hence, we show that gene replacement in the brain is an effective therapeutic approach in this mouse model of TSC1. Our strategy for gene therapy has the advantages that therapy can be achieved from a single application, as compared to repeated treatment with drugs, and that AAV vectors have been found to have minimal to no toxicity in clinical trials for other neurologic conditions. Although there are many additional issues to be addressed, our studies support gene therapy as a useful approach in TSC patients.

  18. Simvastatin Treatment Improves Survival in a Murine Model of Burn Sepsis (United States)

    Beffa, David C; Fischman, Alan J.; Fagan, Shawn P.; Hamrahi, Victoria F.; Kaneki, Masao; Yu, Yong-Ming; Tompkins, Ronald G.; Carter, Edward A.


    Infection is the most common and most serious complication of a major burn injury related to burn size. Despite improvements in antimicrobial therapies sepsis still accounts for 50–60% of deaths in burn patients. Given the acute onset and unpredictable nature of sepsis, primary prevention was rarely attempted in its management. However, recent studies have demonstrated that statin treatment can decrease mortality is a murine model of sepsis by preservation of cardiac function and reversal of inflammatory alterations. In addition, it has been shown that treatment with statins is associated with reduced incidence of sepsis in human patients. In the current study groups of CD1 male mice (n=12) were anesthetized and subjected to a dorsal 30% TBSA scald burn injury. Starting 2 hours post burn, the animals were divided into a treatment group receiving 0.2 µ/g simvastatin or a sham group receiving placebo. Simvastatin and placebo were administered by intraperitoneal injection with two dosing regimens; once daily and every 12 hours. On Post burn day 7 cecal ligation and puncture with a 21-gauge needle was performed under ketamine/xylazine anesthesia and the two different dosing schedules were continued. A simvastatin dose dependant improvement in survival was observed in the burn sepsis model. PMID:21145172

  19. Pretreatment with octreotide modulates iNOS gene expression, mimics surgical delay, and improves flap survival. (United States)

    Gözü, Aydin; Poda, Mehveş; Taşkin, Elif I; Turgut, Hürriyet; Erginel-Unaltuna, Nihan; Doğruman, Hüsniye; Ozsoy, Zafer


    We aimed to evaluate the role of a synthetic somatostatin analogue in delay procedure of experimental skin flaps. Thirty-six rats were randomly divided into 2 groups of 18 each to compare the possible local ischemic effect of octreotide with that of surgical delay in the dorsal random pattern skin flap model. The inducible nitric oxide synthase gene expression was assessed in the flap territory at intervals of immediate, 24 and 48 hours after preconditioning. Histologic analysis was performed in rats at 48th hour and 3 additional rats were used for microangiography. A gradual increase of daily transcript levels was detected in both groups (P < 0.05). The differences of molecular and histologic findings between the groups were not distinctive. Pharmacologically preconditioned rat displayed relevant microvascular features. Forty rats were further grouped randomly into 4 groups of 10 each. In group 1 rats, flaps were raised and reinserted without any prior intervention. Group 2 rats underwent surgical delay procedure, whereas flap territories of the others received either saline solution or octreotide 1 week before the ultimate flap harvest. After another 7-day period, both delay procedures were found effective in improving flap viability (P < 0.01). Ischemia induced by octreotide favored to investigate its utility in delay phenomenon. Although it was not as effective as the surgical delay procedure, it may be a safe pharmacologic alternative to improve the flap survival.

  20. Improving breast cancer survival analysis through competition-based multidimensional modeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erhan Bilal

    Full Text Available Breast cancer is the most common malignancy in women and is responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths annually. As with most cancers, it is a heterogeneous disease and different breast cancer subtypes are treated differently. Understanding the difference in prognosis for breast cancer based on its molecular and phenotypic features is one avenue for improving treatment by matching the proper treatment with molecular subtypes of the disease. In this work, we employed a competition-based approach to modeling breast cancer prognosis using large datasets containing genomic and clinical information and an online real-time leaderboard program used to speed feedback to the modeling team and to encourage each modeler to work towards achieving a higher ranked submission. We find that machine learning methods combined with molecular features selected based on expert prior knowledge can improve survival predictions compared to current best-in-class methodologies and that ensemble models trained across multiple user submissions systematically outperform individual models within the ensemble. We also find that model scores are highly consistent across multiple independent evaluations. This study serves as the pilot phase of a much larger competition open to the whole research community, with the goal of understanding general strategies for model optimization using clinical and molecular profiling data and providing an objective, transparent system for assessing prognostic models.

  1. Chloroquine Improves Survival and Hematopoietic Recovery After Lethal Low-Dose-Rate Radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lim Yiting [Department of Oncology, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland (United States); Hedayati, Mohammad; Merchant, Akil A.; Zhang Yonggang; Yu, Hsiang-Hsuan M. [Department of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland (United States); Kastan, Michael B. [Department of Oncology, St. Jude Children' s Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee (United States); Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, North Carolina (United States); Matsui, William, E-mail: [Department of Oncology, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland (United States); DeWeese, Theodore L., E-mail: [Department of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland (United States)


    Purpose: We have previously shown that the antimalarial agent chloroquine can abrogate the lethal cellular effects of low-dose-rate (LDR) radiation in vitro, most likely by activating the ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM) protein. Here, we demonstrate that chloroquine treatment also protects against lethal doses of LDR radiation in vivo. Methods and Materials: C57BL/6 mice were irradiated with a total of 12.8 Gy delivered at 9.4 cGy/hour. ATM null mice from the same background were used to determine the influence of ATM. Chloroquine was administered by two intraperitoneal injections of 59.4 {mu}g per 17 g of body weight, 24 hours and 4 hours before irradiation. Bone marrow cells isolated from tibia, fibula, and vertebral bones were transplanted into lethally irradiated CD45 congenic recipient mice by retroorbital injection. Chimerism was assessed by flow cytometry. In vitro methylcellulose colony-forming assay of whole bone marrow cells and fluorescence activated cell sorting analysis of lineage depleted cells were used to assess the effect of chloroquine on progenitor cells. Results: Mice pretreated with chloroquine before radiation exhibited a significantly higher survival rate than did mice treated with radiation alone (80% vs. 31%, p = 0.0026). Chloroquine administration before radiation did not affect the survival of ATM null mice (p = 0.86). Chloroquine also had a significant effect on the early engraftment of bone marrow cells from the irradiated donor mice 6 weeks after transplantation (4.2% vs. 0.4%, p = 0.015). Conclusion: Chloroquine administration before radiation had a significant effect on the survival of normal but not ATM null mice, strongly suggesting that the in vivo effect, like the in vitro effect, is also ATM dependent. Chloroquine improved the early engraftment of bone marrow cells from LDR-irradiated mice, presumably by protecting the progenitor cells from radiation injury. Chloroquine thus could serve as a very useful drug for protection

  2. Bortezomib improves progression-free survival in multiple myeloma patients overexpressing preferentially expressed antigen of melanoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Qin Yazhen; Lu Jin; Bao Li; Zhu Honghu; Li Jinlan; Li Lingdi; Lai Yueyun


    Background Significant efforts have been made to identify factors that differentiate patients treated with novel therapies,such as bortezomib in multiple myeloma (MM).The exact expression pattern and prognostic value of the cancer/testis antigen preferentially expressed antigen of melanoma (PRAME) in MM are unknown and were explored in this study.Methods The transcript level of PRAME was detected in bone marrow specimens from 100 newly diagnosed MM patients using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction,and the prognostic value of PRAME was determined through retrospective survival analysis.PRAME expression higher than the upper limit of normal bone marrow was defined as PRAME overexpression or PRAME (+).Results Sixty-two patients (62.0%) overexpressed PRAME.PRAME overexpression showed no prognostic significance to either overall survival (n=100) or progression-free survival (PFS,n=96,all P >0.05) of patients.The patients were also categorized according to regimens with or without bortezomib.PRAME overexpression tended to be associated with a lower two-year PFS rate in patients treated with non-bortezomib-containing regimens (53.5% vs.76.9%,P=0.071).By contrast,it was not associated with the two-year PFS rate in patients with bortezomib-containing regimens (77.5% vs.63.9%,P >0.05).When the patients were categorized into PRAME (+) and PRAME (-) groups,treatment with bortezomib-containing regimens predicted a higher two-year PFS rate in PRAME (+) patients (77.5% vs.53.5%,P=0.027) but showed no significant effect on two-year PFS rate in PRAME (-) patients (63.9% vs.76.9%,P >0.05).Conclusion PRAME overexpression might be an adverse prognostic factor of PFS in MM patients treated with non-bortezomib-containing regimens.Bortezomib improves PFS in patients overexpressing PRAME.

  3. Immunotherapy improves immune homeostasis and increases survival rate of septic patients

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HUANG Shun-wei; CHEN Juan; OUYANG Bin; YANG Chun-hua; CHEN Min-ying; GUAN Xiang-dong


    Objective: To investigate the efficacy of immunotherapy on septic patients with Ulinastatin plus Thymosin-α1. Methods: Seventy postoperative septic patients were divided into two groups at random: the immunotherapy group (n=36) and the conventional therapy group (n=34). Patients in the immunotherapy group received intravenous Ulinastatin of 200 000 U, 3 times per day for 3 days, Ulinastatin of 100 000 U, 3 times per day for 4 days, and subcutaneous injection of Thymosin-α1 of 1.6 mg, twice per day for 3 days, then once per day for 4 days. While conventional therapies such as antibiotics and fluid resuscitation were undertaken in both groups. The expression levels of serum tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin- 10 (IL-10), IgG, C3, T lymphocyte subsets, CD14+ monocyte human leukocyte antigen (locus) DR (HLA-DR) and patients' 28-day survival rate of the two groups were observed and evaluated. Results: The survival rate was significantly higher in the immunotherapy group (63.9%; 23/36) compared with the conventional therapy group (41.2%; 14/34). The serum TNF-α levels [(1.38±0.50) ng/ml in the immunotherapy group vs (1.88±0.53) ng/ml in the conventional group, P<0.05] and the serum IL- 10 levels [(217.52±15.71) ng/ml vs (101.53±16.57) ng/ml, P<0.05] were significantly different between the two groups. The serum IgG levels in the immunotherapy group [(17.65±6.81) g/L] were significantly higher than in the conventional group [(11.94±5.32) g/L]. There were also significant differences in the expression levels of CD4+ T lymphocyte (35%±13% in the immunotherapy group vs 21%±7% in the conventional group, P<0.05) and CD14+ monocyte HLA-DR (50%±5% in the former vs 35%±4% in the latter, P<0.05). Conclusions: Immunotherapy with Ulinastatin plus Thymosin-α1 can enhance the inflammatory response, improve the immune homeostasis, and increase the survival rate of septic patients.

  4. Prescription dose and fractionation predict improved survival after stereotactic radiotherapy for brainstem metastases

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    Leeman Jonathan E


    nausea (n = 1 and headaches (n = 2 that resolved with a short-course of dexamethasone. Conclusion SRT/SRS for brainstem metastases is safe and achieves a high rate of local control. We found higher GPA as well as greater number of treatment fractions and higher prescription dose to be correlated with improved overall survival. Despite this approach, prognosis remains poor and distant intracranial control remains an issue, even in patients previously treated with WBRT.

  5. Community health workers in primary care practice: redesigning health care delivery systems to extend and improve diabetes care in underserved populations. (United States)

    Collinsworth, Ashley; Vulimiri, Madhulika; Snead, Christine; Walton, James


    New, comprehensive, approaches for chronic disease management are needed to ensure that patients, particularly those more likely to experience health disparities, have access to the clinical care, self-management resources, and support necessary for the prevention and control of diabetes. Community health workers (CHWs) have worked in community settings to reduce health care disparities and are currently being deployed in some clinical settings as a means of improving access to and quality of care. Guided by the chronic care model, Baylor Health Care System embedded CHWs within clinical teams in community clinics with the goal of reducing observed disparities in diabetes care and outcomes. This study examines findings from interviews with patients, CHWs, and primary care providers (PCPs) to understand how health care delivery systems can be redesigned to effectively incorporate CHWs and how embedding CHWs in primary care teams can produce informed, activated patients and prepared, proactive practice teams who can work together to achieve improved patient outcomes. Respondents indicated that the PCPs continued to provide clinical exams and manage patient care, but the roles of diabetes education, nutritional counseling, and patient activation were shifted to the CHWs. CHWs also provided patients with social support and connection to community resources. Integration of CHWs into clinical care teams improved patient knowledge and activation levels, the ability of PCPs to identify and proactively address specific patient needs, and patient outcomes.

  6. Pioglitazone alleviates cardiac and vascular remodelling and improves survival in monocrotaline induced pulmonary arterial hypertension. (United States)

    Behringer, Arnica; Trappiel, Manuela; Berghausen, Eva Maria; Ten Freyhaus, Henrik; Wellnhofer, Ernst; Odenthal, Margarete; Blaschke, Florian; Er, Fikret; Gassanov, Natig; Rosenkranz, Stephan; Baldus, Stephan; Kappert, Kai; Caglayan, Evren


    Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a fatal disease with limited therapeutic options. Pathophysiological changes comprise obliterative vascular remodelling of small pulmonary arteries, elevated mean pulmonary arterial systolic pressure (PASP) due to elevated resistance of pulmonary vasculature, adverse right ventricular remodelling, and heart failure. Recent findings also indicate a role of increased inflammation and insulin resistance underlying the development of PAH. We hypothesized that treatment of this condition with the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ) activator pioglitazone, known to regulate the expression of different genes addressing insulin resistance, inflammatory changes, and vascular remodelling, could be a beneficial approach. PAH was induced in adult rats by a single subcutaneous injection of monocrotaline (MCT). Pioglitazone was administered for 2 weeks starting 3 weeks after MCT-injection. At day 35, hemodynamics, organ weights, and -indices were measured. We performed morphological and molecular characterization of the pulmonary vasculature, including analysis of the degree of muscularization, proliferation rates, and medial wall thickness of the small pulmonary arteries. Furthermore, markers of cardiac injury, collagen content, and cardiomyocyte size were analyzed. Survival rates were monitored throughout the experimental period. Pioglitazone treatment improved survival, reduced PASP, muscularization of small pulmonary arteries, and medial wall thickness. Further, MCT-induced right ventricular hypertrophy and fibrosis were attenuated. This was accompanied with reduced cardiac expression of brain natriuretic peptide, as well as decreased cardiomyocyte size. Finally, pulmonary macrophage content and osteopontin gene expression were attenuated. Based on the beneficial impact of pioglitazone, activation of PPARγ might be a promising treatment option in PAH.

  7. Renal Transplant Immunology in the Last 20 Years: A Revolution Towards Graft and Patient Survival Improvement. (United States)

    Sá, Helena; Leal, Rita; Rosa, Manuel Santos


    To deride the hope of progress is the ultimate fatuity, the last word in poverty of spirit and meanness of mind. There is no need to be dismayed by the fact that we cannot yet envisage a definitive solution of our problems, a resting-place beyond which we need not try to go. -P.B. Medawar, 1969* [Formula: see text] Thomas E. Starlz, also known as the Father of Clinical Transplantation, once said that organ transplantation was the supreme exception to the rule that most major advances in medicine spring from discoveries in basic science [Starzl T. The mystique of organ transplantation. J Am Coll Surg 2005 Aug;201(2):160-170]. In fact, the first successful identical-twin kidney transplantation performed by Murray's team in December 1954 (Murray J et al. Renal homotransplantations in identical twins. Surg Forum 1955;6:432-436) was the example of an upside down translation medicine: Human clinical transplantation began and researchers tried to understand the underlying immune response and how to control the powerful rejection pathways through experimental models. In the last 20 years, we have witnessed an amazing progress in the knowledge of immunological mechanisms regarding alloimmune response and an outstanding evolution on the identification and characterization of major and minor histocompatibility antigens. This review presents an historical and clinical perspective of those important advances in kidney transplantation immunology in the last 20 years, which contributed to the improvement in patients' quality of life and the survival of end-stage renal patients. In spite of these significant progresses, some areas still need substantial progress, such as the definition of non-invasive biomarkers for acute rejection; the continuous reduction of immunosuppression; the extension of graft survival, and finally the achievement of real graft tolerance extended to HLA mismatch donor: recipient pairs.

  8. Multimodality therapy including radiotherapy and chemotherapy improves event-free survival in stage C esthesioneuroblastoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eich, H.T.; Staar, S.; Mueller, R.P. [Dept. of Radiotherapy, Univ. of Cologne (Germany); Hero, B.; Berthold, F. [Dept. of Pediatric Oncology, Children' s Hospital, Univ. of Cologne (Germany); Micke, O. [Dept. of Radiotherapy, Univ. of Muenster (Germany); Seegenschmiedt, H. [Dept. of Radiotherapy, Alfried Krupp Hospital, Essen (Germany); Mattke, A. [Children' s Hospital, Olgaspital, Stuttgart (Germany)


    Background: To evaluate the efficacy of multimodality therapy in patients with esthesioneuroblastoma (ENB). Patients and Methods: From 01/1979 through 08/2001, 47 patients with ENB (20 men, 27 women, age 5-81 years), were registered from 18 oncologic centers. There were 14 tumors stage B and 33 stage C according to the Kadish classification. Initial treatment included surgery alone in seven patients, radiotherapy (RT) with or without chemotherapy (CTX) in twelve, surgery plus postoperative RT in 15, and multimodality therapy (surgery plus pre- or postoperative CTX plus postoperative RT) in 13. Results: The 5-year overall survival (OS) for the whole group was 64 {+-} 8% and the 5-year event-free survival (EFS) 50 {+-} 8%. Patients with multimodality treatment had a significantly better 5-year EFS (74 {+-} 13%) compared to the other patients (41 {+-} 9%; p = 0.05), while the 5-year OS was not significantly different between the treatment groups (p = 0.39). For patients with Kadish stage C, multimodality therapy (n = 11) resulted in superior 5-year EFS (72 {+-} 14% vs 17 {+-} 9%; p = 0.01). These patients tended to have an improved OS (69 {+-} 15% vs 47 {+-} 12%; p = 0.19) compared to the other treatment groups. None of the patients with multimodality treatment had a metastatic relapse. Conclusion: Multimodality treatment (surgery plus pre- or postoperative CTX plus postoperative RT) appears to be highly efficient in preventing local and systemic relapse in patients with advanced ENB. Timing and optimal agents of CTX need to be further evaluated. (orig.)

  9. [Internationalized medical care services increase need of health care providers to improve English communication skills]. (United States)

    Yang, Chia-Ling


    English is the most important language used in international communication. Nurses today have significantly more opportunities to come into contact with clients of different nationalities. Therefore, English communication abilities are a critical to the effective care of foreign clients. Miscommunication due to language barriers can endanger the health and safety of foreign clients and hinder their access to healthcare resources. Basic English communicate skills allow nurses to better understand the feelings of foreign clients and to affect their satisfaction with healthcare services provided. The majority of clinical nurses in Taiwan are inadequately prepared to communicate with foreign clients or use English when delivering nursing care services. Although English is not an official language in Taiwan, strengthening English communication skills is necessary for Taiwan's healthcare service system. Faced with increasing numbers of foreign clients in their daily work, first-line nursing staffs need more training to improve English proficiency. In order to do so, support from the hospital director is the first priority. The second priority is to motivate nursing staffs to learn English; the third is to incorporate different English classes into the medical system and schedule class times to meet nurse scheduling needs; and the fourth is to establish international medical wards, with appropriate incentives in pay designed to attract and retain nursing staff proficient in English communication.

  10. Improving transitions of care at hospital discharge--implications for pediatric hospitalists and primary care providers. (United States)

    Harlan, Gregory A; Nkoy, Flory L; Srivastava, Rajendu; Lattin, Gena; Wolfe, Doug; Mundorff, Michael B; Colling, Dayvalena; Valdez, Angelika; Lange, Shay; Atkinson, Sterling D; Cook, Lawrence J; Maloney, Christopher G


    Delays, omissions, and inaccuracy of discharge information are common at hospital discharge and put patients at risk for adverse outcomes. We assembled an interdisciplinary team of stakeholders to evaluate our current discharge process between hospitalists and primary care providers (PCPs). We used a fishbone diagram to identify potential causes of suboptimal discharge communication to PCPs. Opportunities for improvement (leverage points) to achieve optimal transfer of discharge information were identified using tally sheets and Pareto charts. Quality improvement strategies consisted of training and implementation of a new discharge process including: (1) enhanced PCP identification at discharge, (2) use of an electronic discharge order and instruction system, and (3) autofaxing discharge information to PCPs. The new discharge process's impact was evaluated on 2,530 hospitalist patient discharges over a 34-week period by measuring: (1) successful transfer of discharge information (proportion of discharge information sheets successfully faxed to PCPs), (2) timeliness (proportion of sheets faxed within 2 days of discharge), and (3) content (presence of key clinical elements in discharge sheets). Postintervention, success, and timeliness of discharge information transfer between pediatric hospitalists and PCPs significantly improved while content remained high.

  11. Intrathecal enzyme replacement therapy improves motor function and survival in a preclinical mouse model of infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis. (United States)

    Lu, Jui-Yun; Nelvagal, Hemanth R; Wang, Lingling; Birnbaum, Shari G; Cooper, Jonathan D; Hofmann, Sandra L


    The neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCLs) are a group of related hereditary lysosomal storage disorders characterized by progressive loss of neurons in the central nervous system resulting in dementia, loss of motor skills, seizures and blindness. A characteristic intralysosomal accumulation of autofluorescent storage material occurs in the brain and other tissues. Three major forms and nearly a dozen minor forms of NCL are recognized. Infantile-onset NCL (CLN1 disease) is caused by severe deficiency in a soluble lysosomal enzyme, palmitoyl-protein thioesterase-1 (PPT1) and no therapy beyond supportive care is available. Homozygous Ppt1 knockout mice reproduce the known features of the disease, developing signs of motor dysfunction at 5 months of age and death around 8 months. Direct delivery of lysosomal enzymes to the cerebrospinal fluid is an approach that has gained traction in small and large animal models of several other neuropathic lysosomal storage diseases, and has advanced to clinical trials. In the current study, Ppt1 knockout mice were treated with purified recombinant human PPT1 enzyme delivered to the lumbar intrathecal space on each of three consecutive days at 6 weeks of age. Untreated PPT1 knockout mice and wild-type mice served as additional controls. Four enzyme concentration levels (0, 2.6, 5.3 and 10.6 mg/ml of specific activity 20 U/mg) were administered in a volume of 80 μl infused over 8 min. Each group consisted of 16-20 mice. The treatment was well tolerated. Disease-specific survival was 233, 267, 272, and 284days for each of the four treatment groups, respectively, and the effect of treatment was highly significant (p<0.0001). The timing of motor deterioration was also delayed. Neuropathology was improved as evidenced by decreased autofluorescent storage material in the spinal cord and a decrease in CD68 staining in the cortex and spinal cord. The improvements in motor function and survival are similar to results reported for

  12. Unreported births and deaths, a severe obstacle for improved neonatal survival in low-income countries; a population based study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wallin Lars


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In order to improve child survival there is a need to target neonatal mortality. In this pursuit, valid local and national statistics on child health are essential. We analyze to what extent births and neonatal deaths are unreported in a low-income country and discuss the consequences at local and international levels for efforts to save newborn lives. Methods Information on all births and neonatal deaths in Quang Ninh province in Northern Vietnam in 2005 was ascertained by systematic inventory through group interviews with key informants, questionnaires and examination of health facility records. Health care staff at 187 Community Health Centers (CHC and 18 hospitals, in addition to 1372 Village Health Workers (VHW, were included in the study. Results were compared with the official reports of the Provincial Health Bureau. Results The neonatal mortality rate (NMR was 16/1000 (284 neonatal deaths/17 519 births, as compared to the official rate of 4.2/1000. The NMR varied between 44/1000 and 10/1000 in the different districts of the province. The under-reporting was mainly attributable to a dysfunctional reporting system and the fact that families, not the health system, were made responsible to register births and deaths. This under-reporting has severe consequences at local, national and international levels. At a local level, it results in a lack of awareness of the magnitude and differentials in NMR, leading to an indifference towards the problem. At a national and international level the perceived low mortality rate is manifested in a lack of investments in perinatal health programs. Conclusion This example of a faulty health information system is reportedly not unique in low and middle income countries where needs for neonatal health reforms are greatest. Improving reporting systems on births and neonatal deaths is a matter of human rights and a prerequisite for reducing neonatal mortality in order to reach the fourth

  13. Effectiveness of a Home-Based Counselling Strategy on Neonatal Care and Survival: A Cluster-Randomised Trial in Six Districts of Rural Southern Tanzania.

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    Claudia Hanson


    Full Text Available We report a cluster-randomised trial of a home-based counselling strategy, designed for large-scale implementation, in a population of 1.2 million people in rural southern Tanzania. We hypothesised that the strategy would improve neonatal survival by around 15%.In 2010 we trained 824 female volunteers to make three home visits to women and their families during pregnancy and two visits to them in the first few days of the infant's life in 65 wards, selected randomly from all 132 wards in six districts in Mtwara and Lindi regions, constituting typical rural areas in Southern Tanzania. The remaining wards were comparison areas. Participants were not blinded to the intervention. The primary analysis was an intention-to-treat analysis comparing the neonatal mortality (day 0-27 per 1,000 live births in intervention and comparison wards based on a representative survey in 185,000 households in 2013 with a response rate of 90%. We included 24,381 and 23,307 live births between July 2010 and June 2013 and 7,823 and 7,555 live births in the last year in intervention and comparison wards, respectively. We also compared changes in neonatal mortality and newborn care practices in intervention and comparison wards using baseline census data from 2007 including 225,000 households and 22,243 births in five of the six intervention districts. Amongst the 7,823 women with a live birth in the year prior to survey in intervention wards, 59% and 41% received at least one volunteer visit during pregnancy and postpartum, respectively. Neonatal mortality reduced from 35.0 to 30.5 deaths per 1,000 live births between 2007 and 2013 in the five districts, respectively. There was no evidence of an impact of the intervention on neonatal survival (odds ratio [OR] 1.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.9-1.2, p = 0.339. Newborn care practices reported by mothers were better in intervention than in comparison wards, including immediate breastfeeding (42% of 7,287 versus 35% of 7

  14. Improvement in hearing after chiropractic care: a case series

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    Di Duro Joseph O


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The first chiropractic adjustment given in 1895 was reported to have cured deafness. This study examined the effects of a single, initial chiropractic visit on the central nervous system by documenting clinical changes of audiometry in patients after chiropractic care. Case presentation Fifteen patients are presented (9 male, 6 female with a mean age of 54.3 (range 34–71. A Welch Allyn AudioScope 3 was used to screen frequencies of 1000, 2000, 4000 and 500 Hz respectively at three standard decibel levels 20 decibels (dB, 25 dB and 40 dB, respectively, before and immediately after the first chiropractic intervention. Several criteria were used to determine hearing impairment. Ventry & Weinstein criteria of missing one or more tones in either ear at 40 dB and Speech-frequency criteria of missing one or more tones in either ear at 25 dB. All patients were classified as hearing impaired though greater on the right. At 40 dB using the Ventry & Weinstein criteria, 6 had hearing restored, 7 improved and 2 had no change. At 25 dB using the Speech-frequency criteria, none were restored, 11 improved, 4 had no change and 3 missed a tone. Conclusion A percentage of patients presenting to the chiropractor have a mild to moderate hearing loss, most notably in the right ear. The clinical progress documented in this report suggests that manipulation delivered to the neuromusculoskeletal system may create central plastic changes in the auditory system.

  15. Improving America's health care system by investing in information technology. (United States)

    Coye, Molly Joel; Bernstein, William S


    Large-scale investment in health care information technology (IT) infrastructure will not take place without leadership by the federal government. But how the federal government supports the financing of health care IT is critical. Health care IT development has multiple aspects, but it is fundamentally a problem of community infrastructure development. A policy approach that has had consistent success in financing our country's essential physical infrastructure in transportation and environmental protection will be well suited to fostering health care IT infrastructure as well. We propose the creation of a health care IT revolving loan fund program to invest public dollars in health care IT infrastructure projects through community-level nonprofit lending agencies.

  16. Optimal delivery of colorectal cancer follow-up care: improving patient outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorgensen ML


    Full Text Available Mikaela L Jorgensen,1 Jane M Young,1,2 Michael J Solomon2,3 1Cancer Epidemiology and Services Research (CESR, Sydney School of Public Health, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia; 2Surgical Outcomes Research Centre (SOuRCe, Sydney Local Health District and University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia; 3Discipline of Surgery, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia Abstract: Colorectal cancer (CRC is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer worldwide. With population aging and increases in survival, the number of CRC survivors is projected to rise dramatically. The time following initial treatment is often described as a period of transition from intensive hospital-based care back into “regular life.” This review provides an overview of recommended follow-up care for people with CRC who have been treated with curative intent, as well as exploring the current state of the research that underpins these guidelines. For patients, key concerns following treatment include the development of recurrent and new cancers, late and long-term effects of cancer and treatment, and the interplay of these factors with daily function and general health. For physicians, survivorship care plans can be a tool for coordinating the surveillance, intervention, and prevention of these key patient concerns. Though much of the research in cancer survivorship to date has focused on surveillance for recurrent disease, many national guidelines differ in their conclusions about the frequency and timing of follow-up tests. Most CRC guidelines refer only briefly to the management of side effects, despite reports that many patients have a range of ongoing physiological, psychosocial, and functional needs. Guidance for surveillance and intervention is often limited by a small number of heterogeneous trials conducted in this patient group. However, recently released survivorship guidelines emphasize the potential for the effectiveness of

  17. A Proposed ‘Health Literate Care Model’ Would Constitute A Systems Approach To Improving Patients’ Engagement In Care



    Improving health outcomes relies on patients’ full engagement in prevention, decision-making, and self-management activities. Health literacy, or people’s ability to obtain, process, communicate, and understand basic health information and services, is essential to those actions. Yet relatively few Americans are proficient in understanding and acting on available health information. We propose a Health Literate Care Model to improve patient engagement in health care. As health literacy strate...

  18. Improving care coordination using organisational routines: care pathways as a coordination mechanism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prætorius, Thim


    Purpose: This conceptual article systematically applies theory of organisational routines to standardised care pathways. The explanatory power of routines is used to address open questions in the care pathway literature about their coordinating and organising role, the way they change and can...... be replicated, the way they are influenced by the organisation and the way they influence health care professionals. Design/methodology/approach: Theory of routines is systematically applied to the concept of care pathways in order to develop theoretically derived propositions. Findings: Care pathways mirror....... Originality/value: Theory on organisational routines offers fundamental, yet unexplored, insights into hospital processes, including in particular care coordination....

  19. Annotated Bibliography: Understanding Ambulatory Care Practices in the Context of Patient Safety and Quality Improvement. (United States)

    Montano, Maria F; Mehdi, Harshal; Nash, David B


    The ambulatory care setting is an increasingly important component of the patient safety conversation. Inpatient safety is the primary focus of the vast majority of safety research and interventions, but the ambulatory setting is actually where most medical care is administered. Recent attention has shifted toward examining ambulatory care in order to implement better health care quality and safety practices. This annotated bibliography was created to analyze and augment the current literature on ambulatory care practices with regard to patient safety and quality improvement. By providing a thorough examination of current practices, potential improvement strategies in ambulatory care health care settings can be suggested. A better understanding of the myriad factors that influence delivery of patient care will catalyze future health care system development and implementation in the ambulatory setting.

  20. Adjuvant Autologous Melanoma Vaccine for Macroscopic Stage III Disease: Survival, Biomarkers, and Improved Response to CTLA-4 Blockade

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    Michal Lotem


    Full Text Available Background. There is not yet an agreed adjuvant treatment for melanoma patients with American Joint Committee on Cancer stages III B and C. We report administration of an autologous melanoma vaccine to prevent disease recurrence. Patients and Methods. 126 patients received eight doses of irradiated autologous melanoma cells conjugated to dinitrophenyl and mixed with BCG. Delayed type hypersensitivity (DTH response to unmodified melanoma cells was determined on the vaccine days 5 and 8. Gene expression analysis was performed on 35 tumors from patients with good or poor survival. Results. Median overall survival was 88 months with a 5-year survival of 54%. Patients attaining a strong DTH response had a significantly better (p=0.0001 5-year overall survival of 75% compared with 44% in patients without a strong response. Gene expression array linked a 50-gene signature to prognosis, including a cluster of four cancer testis antigens: CTAG2 (NY-ESO-2, MAGEA1, SSX1, and SSX4. Thirty-five patients, who received an autologous vaccine, followed by ipilimumab for progressive disease, had a significantly improved 3-year survival of 46% compared with 19% in nonvaccinated patients treated with ipilimumab alone (p=0.007. Conclusion. Improved survival in patients attaining a strong DTH and increased response rate with subsequent ipilimumab suggests that the autologous vaccine confers protective immunity.

  1. Short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery predict program sustainability. (United States)

    Cramm, Jane Murray; Nieboer, Anna Petra


    Empirical evidence on sustainability of programs that improve the quality of care delivery over time is lacking. Therefore, this study aims to identify the predictive role of short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery on program sustainability. In this longitudinal study, professionals [2010 (T0): n=218, 55% response rate; 2011 (T1): n=300, 68% response rate; 2012 (T2): n=265, 63% response rate] from 22 Dutch disease-management programs completed surveys assessing quality of care and program sustainability. Our study findings indicated that quality of chronic care delivery improved significantly in the first 2 years after implementation of the disease-management programs. At T1, overall quality, self-management support, delivery system design, and integration of chronic care components, as well as health care delivery and clinical information systems and decision support, had improved. At T2, overall quality again improved significantly, as did community linkages, delivery system design, clinical information systems, decision support and integration of chronic care components, and self-management support. Multilevel regression analysis revealed that quality of chronic care delivery at T0 (pquality changes in the first (pmanagement programs based on the chronic care model improved the quality of chronic care delivery over time and that short and long term changes in the quality of chronic care delivery predicted the sustainability of the projects.

  2. Improving Bariatric Patient Transport and Care with Simulation

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    Brad D. Gable


    Full Text Available Introduction: Obesity is prevalent in the United States. Obese patients have physiologic differences from non-obese individuals. Not only does transport and maintenance of these patients require use of specialized equipment, but it also requires a distinct skill set and knowledge base. To date, there is no literature investigating simulation as a model for educating pre-hospital providers in the care of bariatric patients. The purpose of this study was to determine if a 3-hour educational course with simulation could improve paramedics’ knowledge and confidence of bariatric procedures and transport. This study also examined if prior experience with bariatric transport affected training outcomes. Methods: Our study took place in August 2012 during paramedic training sessions. Paramedics completed a pre- and post-test that assessed confidence and knowledge and provided information on previous experience. They had a 30-minute didactic and participated in 2 20-minute hands-on skills portions that reviewed procedural issues in bariatric patients, including airway procedures, peripheral venous and intraosseous access, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Study participants took part in one of two simulated patient encounters. Paramedics were challenged with treating emergent traumatic and/or medical conditions, as well as extricating and transporting bariatric patients. Each group underwent a debriefing of the scenario immediately following their case. We measured confidence using a 5-point Likert-type response scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree to 5 (strongly agree on a 7-item questionnaire. We assessed knowledge with 12 multiple choice questions. Paired-sample t-tests were used to compare pre- and post-simulation confidence and knowledge with a significance level of p≤0.05. We used analysis of covariance to examine the effect of previous experiences on pre-and post-educational activity confidence and knowledge with a significance level of p

  3. The Academic Medical System: Reinvention to Survive the Revolution in Health Care. (United States)

    Konstam, Marvin A; Hill, Joseph A; Kovacs, Richard J; Harrington, Robert A; Arrighi, James A; Khera, Amit


    Academic medical centers (AMCs) are presently facing enormous challenges arising from a prospective decline in government funding for research and education, shifting payment models emphasizing efficiency and value, and increasing competition. Left unabated, these challenges will drive many AMCs to de-emphasize or forsake their core missions in an effort to survive. Stemming from a symposium held at the 2015 Scientific Sessions of the American College of Cardiology titled, "The Academic Medical Center of the Future," we propose a series of changes, including internal restructuring, system-wide partnership, and novel approaches to support research and education, that are designed to better position AMCs to compete and face their growing challenges in a manner that preserves their essential missions. In aggregate, these changes will facilitate establishing the academic medical system of the future.

  4. Improving Adherence to Hand Hygiene among Health Care Workers (United States)

    Maskerine, Courtney; Loeb, Mark


    Increased adherence to hand hygiene is widely acknowledged to be the most important way of reducing infections in health care facilities. Despite evidence of benefit, adherence to hand hygiene among health care professionals remains low. Several behavioral and organizational theories have been proposed to explain this. As a whole, the success of…

  5. [The UHSA, an improvement in the care provision]. (United States)

    Chanty, Jérôme


    Established by the law on the orientation and programming of justice of September 2002, the specially equipped hospital unit (UHSA) provides psychiatric treatment with full medical care to prisoners, in direct cooperation with the prison. In this specific social context, can the organisation of the care and the structure itself represent a lasting solution?

  6. En Route Critical Care: Evolving, Improving & Advancing Capabilities (United States)


    Conference Civilian Partnerships  ECMO Pediatric/Neonatology Consortium  58 y/o Male unresponsive to care  Needed Adult ECMO – USA ECMO MD – USAF...Neonatologist – Civilian Perfusionist – Civilian ECMO RN  Transported to Iowa 36 2011 MHS Conference International AE En Route Medical Care Conference

  7. Incorporating movement patterns to improve survival estimates for juvenile bull trout (United States)

    Bowerman, Tracy; Budy, Phaedra


    Populations of many fish species are sensitive to changes in vital rates during early life stages, but our understanding of the factors affecting growth, survival, and movement patterns is often extremely limited for juvenile fish. These critical information gaps are particularly evident for bull trout Salvelinus confluentus, a threatened Pacific Northwest char. We combined several active and passive mark–recapture and resight techniques to assess migration rates and estimate survival for juvenile bull trout (70–170 mm total length). We evaluated the relative performance of multiple survival estimation techniques by comparing results from a common Cormack–Jolly–Seber (CJS) model, the less widely used Barker model, and a simple return rate (an index of survival). Juvenile bull trout of all sizes emigrated from their natal habitat throughout the year, and thereafter migrated up to 50 km downstream. With the CJS model, high emigration rates led to an extreme underestimate of apparent survival, a combined estimate of site fidelity and survival. In contrast, the Barker model, which allows survival and emigration to be modeled as separate parameters, produced estimates of survival that were much less biased than the return rate. Estimates of age-class-specific annual survival from the Barker model based on all available data were 0.218±0.028 (estimate±SE) for age-1 bull trout and 0.231±0.065 for age-2 bull trout. This research demonstrates the importance of incorporating movement patterns into survival analyses, and we provide one of the first field-based estimates of juvenile bull trout annual survival in relatively pristine rearing conditions. These estimates can provide a baseline for comparison with future studies in more impacted systems and will help managers develop reliable stage-structured population models to evaluate future recovery strategies.

  8. VA Health Care: Actions Needed to Improve Newly Enrolled Veterans Access to Primary Care (United States)


    primary care provider and support staff—a nurse care manager, clinical associate, and administrative clerk. Letter Page 2 GAO-16-328...Health Eligibility Center, VHA central office—VHA’s Health Resource Center, Office of Primary Care, and Access and Clinical Administration Program ...newly enrolled veterans were able to access primary care from the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Veterans Health Administration (VHA), and others

  9. Better Kid Care Program Improves the Quality of Child Care: Results from an Interview Study (United States)

    Ostergren, Carol S.; Riley, David A.; Wehmeier, Jenny M.


    More high quality child care is needed in the United States. This article evaluates the Better Kid Care (BKC) program produced by Pennsylvania State University Extension. Child care staff in Wisconsin were interviewed about changes they had made in their early childhood programs following participation in the BKC program. Findings show that 2…

  10. Improving long-term care provision: towards demand-based care by means of modularity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C. de Blok; K. Luijkx; B. Meijboom; J. Schols


    Background: As in most fields of health care, societal and political changes encourage suppliers of long-term care to put their clients at the center of care and service provision and become more responsive towards client needs and requirements. However, the diverse, multiple and dynamic nature of d

  11. The proneural molecular signature is enriched in oligodendrogliomas and predicts improved survival among diffuse gliomas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee A D Cooper

    Full Text Available The Cancer Genome Atlas Project (TCGA has produced an extensive collection of '-omic' data on glioblastoma (GBM, resulting in several key insights on expression signatures. Despite the richness of TCGA GBM data, the absence of lower grade gliomas in this data set prevents analysis genes related to progression and the uncovering of predictive signatures. A complementary dataset exists in the form of the NCI Repository for Molecular Brain Neoplasia Data (Rembrandt, which contains molecular and clinical data for diffuse gliomas across the full spectrum of histologic class and grade. Here we present an investigation of the significance of the TCGA consortium's expression classification when applied to Rembrandt gliomas. We demonstrate that the proneural signature predicts improved clinical outcome among 176 Rembrandt gliomas that includes all histologies and grades, including GBMs (log rank test p = 1.16e-6, but also among 75 grade II and grade III samples (p  =  2.65e-4. This gene expression signature was enriched in tumors with oligodendroglioma histology and also predicted improved survival in this tumor type (n =  43, p  =  1.25e-4. Thus, expression signatures identified in the TCGA analysis of GBMs also have intrinsic prognostic value for lower grade oligodendrogliomas, and likely represent important differences in tumor biology with implications for treatment and therapy. Integrated DNA and RNA analysis of low-grade and high-grade proneural gliomas identified increased expression and gene amplification of several genes including GLIS3, TGFB2, TNC, AURKA, and VEGFA in proneural GBMs, with corresponding loss of DLL3 and HEY2. Pathway analysis highlights the importance of the Notch and Hedgehog pathways in the proneural subtype. This demonstrates that the expression signatures identified in the TCGA analysis of GBMs also have intrinsic prognostic value for low-grade oligodendrogliomas, and likely represent important differences in tumor

  12. Improving the quality of care in Chinese family planning programme. (United States)

    Jiang, Y; Geng, Q; Haffey, J; Douglas, E


    The Chinese State Family Planning Commission (SFPC) is the government department responsible for coordinating and implementing the national population and family planning programs. The commission includes about 300,000 family planning workers and 50 million volunteers. Community workers provide IEC and technical services to couples of reproductive age. In July 1991, SFPC began a five year project to train rural family planning workers in contraceptive technology and interpersonal communication and counseling. These workers were important because of their service to a population of 800 million or 75% of total population. The training program was part of an effort to standardize training and institutionalize it throughout the country. The project involved 20 pilot training stations in 19 provinces. The primary task was to train family planning workers at the grassroots level. 80,000 persons were expected to be trained during the five years. Activities included a training needs assessment, development of training curricula and programs, training of workers, and monitoring and evaluation. Training techniques and topics will include participatory training methods, interpersonal communication and counseling, development of audience based training methods, issues of contraceptive choice and quality of care, and counseling issues such as sexually transmitted disease and HIV infection prevention. About 40,000 family planning workers and volunteers were trained by 1992 in counties, townships, and villages. Trainees learned about "informed choice" and the importance of counseling. Feedback from training activities focused on the appreciation for the participatory training methods such as brainstorming, case study, and role play. Workers appreciated the process involved in training as well as the information received. Evaluation showed that clients improved their knowledge and had positive interactions with workers.

  13. Improved survival rate in patients with diabetes and end-stage renal disease in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, V R; Mathiesen, E R; Heaf, J;


    AIMS/HYPOTHESIS: We investigated the survival rate of Danish diabetic patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) between 1990 and 2005 and evaluated possible predictors of survival rate. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Data were obtained from the Danish National Register on Dialysis and Transplantation...

  14. Oesophageal cancer in The Netherlands : Increasing incidence and mortality but improving survival

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Crane, Lucia M. A.; Schaapveld, Michael; Visser, Otto; Louwmand, Marieke W. J.; Plukker, John T. M.; van Dam, Gooitzen M.


    Aim: Oesophageal cancer is highly lethal with a 5-year relative survival of 10-15%. An increasing incidence has been reported for several parts bf the Western world. We studied time trends in incidence, mortality and survival for oesophageal cancer in the Netherlands during 1989-2003. Methods: Data

  15. The National Palliative Care Research Center and the Center to Advance Palliative Care: a partnership to improve care for persons with serious illness and their families. (United States)

    Morrison, R Sean; Meier, Diane E


    The elimination of suffering and the cure of disease are the fundamental goals of medicine. While medical advances have transformed previously fatal conditions such as cancer and heart disease into illnesses that people can live with for many years, they have not been accompanied by corresponding improvements in the quality of life for these patients and their families. Living with a serious illness should not mean living in pain or experiencing symptoms like shortness of breath, nausea, or fatigue. Yet, multiple studies over the past decade suggest that medical care for patients with advanced illness is characterized by inadequately treated physical distress; fragmented care systems; poor communication between doctors, patients, and families; and enormous strains on family caregiver and support systems. Palliative care is interdisciplinary care focused on relief of pain and other symptoms and support for best possible quality of life for patients with serious illness, and their families. It is appropriate at the point of diagnosis of a serious illness. It goes beyond hospice care to offer patients and their families treatments focused on improving quality of life while they are receiving life-prolonging and curative treatments. Palliative care programs have been shown to reduce symptoms, improve doctor-patient-family communication and satisfaction with care, as well as enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of hospital services. In the last 5 years alone the number of palliative care programs has more than doubled. This growth is in response to the increasing numbers and needs of Americans living with serious, complex and chronic illnesses, and the realities of the care responsibilities faced by their families. In order to ensure that all persons with serious illness and their families receive the quality of care they deserve, palliative care must become an integral part of the U.S. healthcare landscape. Specifically, persons facing serious illness and their

  16. Quality improvement by implementing an integrated oncological care pathway for breast cancer patients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hoeve, J.; de Munck, L.; Otter, Renee; de Vries, J.; Siesling, S.


    Background and aim: In cancer care, more and more systemized approaches such as care pathways are used to reduce variation, reduce waiting- and throughput times and to improve quality of care. The aim of this study was to determine whether the implementation of a multidisciplinary breast cancer path

  17. Quality improvement by implementing an integrated oncological care pathway for breast cancer patients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoeve, van J.; Munck, de L.; Otter, R.; Vries, de J.; Siesling, S.


    Background and aim In cancer care, more and more systemized approaches such as care pathways are used to reduce variation, reduce waiting- and throughput times and to improve quality of care. The aim of this study was to determine whether the implementation of a multidisciplinary breast cancer pathw

  18. Improving client-centred care and services : the role of front/back-office configurations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Broekhuis, Manda; de Blok, C.; Meijboom, B.


    Improving client-centred care and services: the role of front/back-officeconfigurations. This paper is a report of a study conducted to explore the application of designing front- and back-office work resulting in efficient client-centred care in healthcare organizations that supply home care, welfa

  19. Developing evidence-based maternity care in Iran: a quality improvement study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Kazem


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Current Iranian perinatal statistics indicate that maternity care continues to need improvement. In response, we implemented a multi-faceted intervention to improve the quality of maternity care at an Iranian Social Security Hospital. Using a before-and-after design our aim was to improve the uptake of selected evidence based practices and more closely attend to identified women's needs and preferences. Methods The major steps of the study were to (1 identify women's needs, values and preferences via interviews, (2 select through a process of professional consensus the top evidence-based clinical recommendations requiring local implementation (3 redesign care based on the selected evidence-based recommendations and women's views, and (4 implement the new care model. We measured the impact of the new care model on maternal satisfaction and caesarean birth rates utilising maternal surveys and medical record audit before and after implementation of the new care model. Results Twenty women's needs and requirements as well as ten evidence-based clinical recommendations were selected as a basis for improving care. Following the introduction of the new model of care, women's satisfaction levels improved significantly on 16 of 20 items (p Conclusion The introduction of a quality improvement care model improved compliance with evidence-based guidelines and was associated with an improvement in women's satisfaction levels and a reduction in rates of caesarean birth.

  20. Improving long-term survival of patients with acute myocardial infarction from 1977-1988 in a region of Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Torp-Pedersen, C; Hildebrandt, P; Køber, L;


    The aim of this investigation was to study secular trends in long-term survival following myocardial infarction (MI). Five thousand one hundred and fifty-seven consecutive cases of MI in 3942 patients were recorded in a well-defined region in the study period 1977-1988. The study period ended...... significant (P infarction was an independent predictor of survival. Patients were subdivided into a high risk group suffering from either congestive heart failure or cardiac arrest during hospitalization, and a low risk group without these complications....... Year of infarction was without importance in the high risk group but highly significant in the low risk group. Long-term survival following MI gradually improved prior to the introduction of thrombolytic therapy. The improvement was confined to low risk patients without cardiac arrest or congestive...

  1. Do apprehended saffron finches know how to survive predators? A careful look at reintroduction candidates. (United States)

    Dutra, Luisa Mascarenhas Ladeia; Young, Robert John; Galdino, Conrado Aleksander Barbosa; Vasconcellos, Angélica da Silva


    Wildlife trafficking is a major factor contributing to the reduction of biological diversity. In Brazil, trafficked animals are apprehended by environmental agencies and released in the wild. The maintenance of wild animals in captivity may jeopardize their survival in the wild, for example, by reducing their ability to recognize a predator. Saffron finches (Sicalis flaveola) are among the most trafficked Brazilian birds. Twenty-eight apprehended saffron finches were submitted to Temperament and Predator-recognition tests, with presentation of predator and non-predator models: a live and a taxidermised hawk, a taxidermised armadillo and a Lego cube. The captive saffron finches have retained general anti-predator responses, such as increasing alertness, avoiding back-facing and keeping distance when presented with potential predators. The birds responded more strongly to the live hawk than to the cube. Although some responses to the other stimuli were not statistically different from each other, a decrease in intensity of response with the decrease in threat level was remarkable. We found no relationship between temperament traits and responses to predators: a possible consequence of husbandry practices in captivity. Our results indicate saffron finches may retain basic anti-predator responses in captivity, which favours release and reintroduction programmes: information relevant for conservation management.

  2. Observing nurses has improved my alcohol dependency care. (United States)

    Jaques, Ellise


    My first placement in my first year of nursing training was on a gastrointestinal/hepatology ward. Alongside my mentor, I was caring for a patient who had been withdrawing from alcohol since admission to hospital the previous evening.

  3. Organizational interventions to implement improvements in patient care: a structured review of reviews.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wensing, M.J.P.; Wollersheim, H.C.H.; Grol, R.P.T.M.


    BACKGROUND: Changing the organization of patient care should contribute to improved patient outcomes as functioning of clinical teams and organizational structures are important enablers for improvement. OBJECTIVE: To provide an overview of the research evidence on effects of organizational strategi

  4. Improvement in perinatal care for extremely premature infants in Denmark from 1994 to 2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hasselager, Asbjørn Børch; Børch, Klaus; Pryds, Ole Axel


    PVL) and intraventricular haemorrhage grade 3-4 (IVH 3-4). RESULTS: A total of 184, 83 and 127 infants were included from the cohorts. Delivery rates at level 3 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) hospitals increased from 69% to 87%. Transfer rates to level 3 NICU almost doubled during the period. Survival rates were...

  5. Modest improvement in 20 years of kidney cancer care in the Netherlands.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schans, S.A. van de; Aben, K.K.H.; Mulders, P.F.A.; Haanen, J.B.; Herpen, C.M. van; Verhoeven, R.H.; Karim-Kos, H.E.; Oosterwijk, E.; Kiemeney, L.A.L.M.


    AIM: For an evaluation of the progress achieved in the field of kidney cancer care in the Netherlands in the last decades, we described trends in incidence, treatment, mortality and relative survival. METHODS: All adult patients newly diagnosed with kidney cancer between 1989 and 2009 (N=32,545) wer

  6. Positive end-expiratory pressure improves survival in a rodent model of cardiopulmonary resuscitation using high-dose epinephrine.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    McCaul, Conán


    Multiple interventions have been tested in models of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to optimize drug use, chest compressions, and ventilation. None has studied the effects of positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) on outcome. We hypothesized that because PEEP can reverse pulmonary atelectasis, lower pulmonary vascular resistance, and potentially improve cardiac output, its use during CPR would increase survival.

  7. Survival rate in nasopharyngeal carcinoma improved by high caseload volume: a nationwide population-based study in Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chou Pesus


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Positive correlation between caseload and outcome has previously been validated for several procedures and cancer treatments. However, there is no information linking caseload and outcome of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC treatment. We used nationwide population-based data to examine the association between physician case volume and survival rates of patients with NPC. Methods Between 1998 and 2000, a total of 1225 patients were identified from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. Survival analysis, the Cox proportional hazards model, and propensity score were used to assess the relationship between 10-year survival rates and physician caseloads. Results As the caseload of individual physicians increased, unadjusted 10-year survival rates increased (p p = 0.001 after adjusting for comorbidities, hospital, and treatment modality. When analyzed by propensity score, the adjusted 10-year survival rate differed significantly between patients treated by high-volume physicians and patients treated by low/medium-volume physicians (75% vs. 61%; p Conclusions Our data confirm a positive volume-outcome relationship for NPC. After adjusting for differences in the case mix, our analysis found treatment of NPC by high-volume physicians improved 10-year survival rate.

  8. Using Digital Crumbs from an Electronic Health Record to Identify, Study and Improve Health Care Teams (United States)

    Gray, James E; Feldman, Henry; Reti, Shane; Markson, Larry; Lu, Xiaoning; Davis, Roger B.; Safran, Charles A


    We have developed a novel approach, the Digital Crumb Investigator, for using data collected as a byproduct of Electonic Health Record (EHR) use to help define care teams and care processes. We are developing tools and methods to utilize these routinely collected data to visualize and quantify care networks across acute care and ambulatory settings We have chosen a clinical care domain where clinicians use EHRs in their offices, on the maternity wards and in the neonatal intensive care units as a test paradigm for this technology. The tools and methods we deliver should readily translate to other health care settings that collect behind-the-scenes electronic metadata such as audit trails. We believe that by applying the methods of social networking to define clinical relationships around a patient’s care we will enable new areas of research into the usage of EHRs to promote patient safety and other improvements in care. PMID:22195103

  9. Valproic Acid Use During Radiation Therapy for Glioblastoma Associated With Improved Survival

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barker, Christopher A., E-mail: [Department of Radiation Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York (United States); Bishop, Andrew J.; Chang, Maria; Beal, Kathryn; Chan, Timothy A. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York (United States)


    Purpose: Valproic acid (VA) is an antiepileptic drug (AED) and histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor taken by patients with glioblastoma (GB) to manage seizures, and it can modulate the biologic effects of radiation therapy (RT). We investigated whether VA use during RT for GB was associated with overall survival (OS). Methods and Materials: Medical records of 544 adults with GB were retrospectively reviewed. Analyses were performed to determine the association of Radiation Therapy Oncology Group recursive partitioning analysis (RTOG RPA) class, seizure history, and concurrent temozolomide (TMZ) and AED use during RT with OS. Results: Seizures before the end of RT were noted in 217 (40%) patients, and 403 (74%) were taking an AED during RT; 29 (7%) were taking VA. Median OS in patients taking VA was 16.9 months (vs 13.6 months taking another AED, P=.16). Among patients taking an AED during RT, OS was associated with VA (P=.047; hazard ratio [HR], 0.67; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.27-1.07), and RTOG RPA class (P<.0001; HR, 1.49; 95% CI, 1.37-1.61). Of the 5 most common AEDs, only VA was associated with OS. Median OS of patients receiving VA and TMZ during RT was 23.9 months (vs 15.2 months for patients taking another AED, P=.26). When the analysis was restricted to patients who received concurrent TMZ, VA use was marginally associated with OS (P=.057; HR, 0.54; 95% CI, −0.09 to 1.17), independently of RTOG RPA class and seizure history. Conclusions: VA use during RT for GB was associated with improved OS, independently of RTOG RPA, seizure history, and concurrent TMZ use. Further studies of treatment that combines HDAC inhibitors and RT are warranted.

  10. Community-acquired pneumonia and survival of critically ill acute exacerbation of COPD patients in respiratory intensive care units (United States)

    Lu, Zhiwei; Cheng, Yusheng; Tu, Xiongwen; Chen, Liang; Chen, Hu; Yang, Jian; Wang, Jinyan; Zhang, Liqin


    Purpose The aim of this study was to appraise the effect of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) on inhospital mortality in critically ill acute exacerbation of COPD (AECOPD) patients admitted to a respiratory intensive care unit. Patients and methods A retrospective observational study was performed. Consecutive critically ill AECOPD patients receiving treatment in a respiratory intensive care unit were reviewed from September 1, 2012, to August 31, 2015. Categorical variables were analyzed using chi-square tests, and continuous variables were analyzed by Mann–Whitney U-test. Kaplan–Meier analysis was used to assess the association of CAP with survival of critically ill AECOPD patients for univariate analysis. Cox’s proportional hazards regression model was performed to identify risk factors for multivariate analysis. Results A total of 80 consecutive eligible individuals were reviewed. These included 38 patients with CAP and 42 patients without CAP. Patients with CAP had a higher inhospital rate of mortality than patients without CAP (42% vs 33.3%, Pcritically ill AECOPD patients (CAP: hazard ratio, 5.29; 95% CI, 1.50–18.47, Pcritically ill AECOPD patients. PMID:27563239

  11. Electrical vagus nerve stimulation attenuates systemic inflammation and improves survival in a rat heatstroke model. (United States)

    Yamakawa, Kazuma; Matsumoto, Naoya; Imamura, Yukio; Muroya, Takashi; Yamada, Tomoki; Nakagawa, Junichiro; Shimazaki, Junya; Ogura, Hiroshi; Kuwagata, Yasuyuki; Shimazu, Takeshi


    This study was performed to gain insights into novel therapeutic approaches for the treatment of heatstroke. The central nervous system regulates peripheral immune responses via the vagus nerve, the primary neural component of the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway. Electrical vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) reportedly suppresses pro-inflammatory cytokine release in several models of inflammatory disease. Here, we evaluated whether electrical VNS attenuates severe heatstroke, which induces a systemic inflammatory response. Anesthetized rats were subjected to heat stress (41.5°C for 30 minutes) with/without electrical VNS. In the VNS-treated group, the cervical vagus nerve was stimulated with constant voltage (10 V, 2 ms, 5 Hz) for 20 minutes immediately after completion of heat stress. Sham-operated animals underwent the same procedure without stimulation under a normothermic condition. Seven-day mortality improved significantly in the VNS-treated group versus control group. Electrical VNS significantly suppressed induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-6 in the serum 6 hours after heat stress. Simultaneously, the increase of soluble thrombomodulin and E-selectin following heat stress was also suppressed by VNS treatment, suggesting its protective effect on endothelium. Immunohistochemical analysis using tissue preparations obtained 6 hours after heat stress revealed that VNS treatment attenuated infiltration of inflammatory (CD11b-positive) cells in lung and spleen. Interestingly, most cells with increased CD11b positivity in response to heat stress did not express α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the spleen. These data indicate that electrical VNS modulated cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway abnormalities induced by heat stress, and this protective effect was associated with improved mortality. These findings may provide a novel therapeutic strategy to combat severe heatstroke in the critical care

  12. VA Health Care: Improved Monitoring Needed for Effective Oversight of Care for Women Veterans (United States)


    Congressional Requesters December 2016 GAO-17-52 United States Government Accountability Office United States Government Accountability Office...2VA health care systems are made up of multiple VAMCs. Established under the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014, Choice...on VA’s Provision of Health Care Services to Women Veterans, GAO-09-884T (Washington, D.C.: July 14, 2009) and VA Health Care: Preliminary Findings

  13. Short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery predict program sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.M. Cramm (Jane); A.P. Nieboer (Anna)


    markdownabstractEmpirical evidence on sustainability of programs that improve the quality of care delivery over time is lacking. Therefore, this study aims to identify the predictive role of short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery on program sustainability. In this lon

  14. Health care professional development: Working as a team to improve patient care. (United States)

    Babiker, Amir; El Husseini, Maha; Al Nemri, Abdurrahman; Al Frayh, Abdurrahman; Al Juryyan, Nasir; Faki, Mohamed O; Assiri, Asaad; Al Saadi, Muslim; Shaikh, Farheen; Al Zamil, Fahad


    In delivering health care, an effective teamwork can immediately and positively affect patient safety and outcome. The need for effective teams is increasing due to increasing co-morbidities and increasing complexity of specialization of care. Time has gone when a doctor or a dentist or any other health practitioner in whatsoever health organization would be able to solely deliver a quality care that satisfies his or her patients. The evolution in health care and a global demand for quality patient care necessitate a parallel health care professional development with a great focus on patient centred teamwork approach. This can only be achieved by placing the patient in the centre of care and through sharing a wide based culture of values and principles. This will help forming and developing an effective team able to deliver exceptional care to the patients. Aiming towards this goal, motivation of team members should be backed by strategies and practical skills in order to achieve goals and overcome challenges. This article highlights values and principles of working as a team and principles and provides team players with a practical approach to deliver quality patient care.

  15. Improving the Survival of Arthrobacter sp., CW9 during Spray Drying Monitored by Scan Electric Microscope


    Zhenqiang Xia; Ming Zhu; Yanqiu Zhang


    The culture of an aquaculture probiotic, i.e., Arthrobacter sp., CW9, was spray dried with different carriers/protectants, in which Scan Electric Microscope (SEM) was used to analyze the surface of micro-paticles produced by spray-drying. Matrix of protectants, inlet temperature and feed rate were optimized according to the survival rate after spray drying. Scanning electron micrographs showed that cracks formed on the particle surface were a key factor in enhancing bacteria survival during s...

  16. High procedure volume is strongly associated with improved survival after lung cancer surgery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lüchtenborg, Margreet; Riaz, Sharma P; Coupland, Victoria H


    Studies have reported an association between hospital volume and survival for non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We explored this association in England, accounting for case mix and propensity to resect.......Studies have reported an association between hospital volume and survival for non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We explored this association in England, accounting for case mix and propensity to resect....

  17. Improving Chronic Care: Developing and testing disease-management interventions applied in COPD care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    K.M.M. Lemmens (Karin)


    textabstractDisease management has emerged as a new strategy to enhance quality of care for patients suffering from chronic conditions, and to control health care costs. So far, however, the effects of this strategy remain unclear. The purpose of this thesis was to determine the core elements of dis

  18. Child care at CERN: Recommendations for Improvements of the Child Care Situation at CERN

    CERN Document Server

    Alviggi, M G; Avramidou, R; Barillari, T; Bates, R; Benelli, G; Beolè, S; Berger, N; Boeriu, O; Bölla, G; Bornheim, A; Brigido, F; Calheiros, F; Garrido, M C; Llatas, M C; Chesneanu, D; Conde-Muíño, P; D'Auria, S; De Santo, A; David Tinoco Mendes, A; De La Cruz Burelo, E; Della Volpe, M; Delmastro, M; Demers, S M; Dimovasili, E; Dindar, K; Elder, S; Eno, S; Eschrich, K G; Fonseca Martin, T M; Gagnon, P; Gateau, M; Gemme, C; Gentile, S; Geurts, F; Goldfarb, S; Grabowska-Bold, I; Grothe, M; Hadjidakis, C; Hoffmann, D; Issever, C; Josa-Mutuberria, I; Kandasamy, S; Koblitz, S; Koval'S'Kyi, D; Krivda, M; Lançon, E; Leahu, A E; Leahu, L; Lester, C G; Lipniacka-Wesolowska, A L; List, J; López-Noriega, M; Manca, G; Mariotti, C; Maselli, S; Merkel, P; Nachtman, J; Natale, S; Oldeman, R; Organtini, G; Patterson, R; Pesci, A; Primavera, M; Quadt, A; Rosati, M; Sbarra, C; Teuscher, R; Tique Aires Viegas, F; Trigger, I M; Tuominen, E; Van Lingen, F; Vandoni, G; Vanini, S; Veverkovai, K; Vickey, T; Wang, D; Wells, P; Wengler, T; Wittmer, B; Yumiceva Del Pozo, F X; CERN. Geneva. HR Department


    This is a document summarizing a survey of child care needs of CERN staff and users which was performed in February 2008 by the CERN Child Care Initiative. The document presents the analysis of this data. Conclusions on the minimal facilities size are derived and possible funding source at the European Union are discussed.

  19. Antenatal care strengthening for improved quality of care in Jimma, Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villadsen, Sarah Fredsted; Negussie, Dereje; GebreMariam, Abebe;


    increased priority of ANC among health care providers. The organizational structure of the facilities and lack of continuity in care provision turned out to be a major challenge for implementation. There was a positive effect of the intervention on health education on danger signs during pregnancy (OR: 3...

  20. An intelligent partner system for improving chronic illness care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tibor Deutsch


    Full Text Available Chronic care consists of a sequence of actions to treat a specific clinical disorder over time as a function of the ways in which illness progresses and patients respond to management actions. Outcomes depend on physicians' skills to select the actions best suited for their patients and competent self-management. This paper presents the architecture of an intelligent partner system (IPS, which helps to provide doctors with relevant data and skills and empowers chronically ill patients with the information and confidence to manage their health wisely. The services of this intelligent system are presented as 'therapies' for the information-processing 'pathologies' associated with traditional chronic illness care.

  1. Improving breast care: providing, guiding, expertise, and leadership. (United States)

    Granai, Cornelius O; Orr, James W


    Optimal healthcare blends timeless doctor-patient values with state-of-the-art medical knowledge. The physician's role varies from delivering therapies to guiding patients through the healthcare maze to their best decisions. Breast care should not be parceling out of anatomic parts, as if biological relationships do not exist. Instead, it should stem from an understanding of the "total woman"--biological and otherwise--and how important that unity is for quality of life, even when confronting breast cancer. Breast fellowships for gynecologic and general surgeons create superior clinicians and better patient advocates -essential in advancing women-centric care and healthcare leadership.

  2. Improving long-term care provision: towards demand-based care by means of modularity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meijboom Bert


    Full Text Available Abstract Background As in most fields of health care, societal and political changes encourage suppliers of long-term care to put their clients at the center of care and service provision and become more responsive towards client needs and requirements. However, the diverse, multiple and dynamic nature of demand for long-term care complicates the movement towards demand-based care provision. This paper aims to advance long-term care practice and, to that end, examines the application of modularity. This concept is recognized in a wide range of product and service settings for its ability to design demand-based products and processes. Methods Starting from the basic dimensions of modularity, we use qualitative research to explore the use and application of modularity principles in the current working practices and processes of four organizations in the field of long-term care for the elderly. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 38 key informants and triangulated with document research and observation. Data was analyzed thematically by means of coding and subsequent exploration of patterns. Data analysis was facilitated by qualitative analysis software. Results Our data suggest that a modular setup of supply is employed in the arrangement of care and service supply and assists providers of long-term care in providing their clients with choice options and variation. In addition, modularization of the needs assessment and package specification process allows the case organizations to manage client involvement but still provide customized packages of care and services. Conclusion The adequate setup of an organization's supply and its specification phase activities are indispensible for long-term care providers who aim to do better in terms of quality and efficiency. Moreover, long-term care providers could benefit from joint provision of care and services by means of modular working teams. Based upon our findings, we are able to

  3. Improved renal allograft survival using the mixed lymphocyte culture for selection of nonidentical living related donors. (United States)

    Riggio, R R; Saal, S D; Katz, E B; Tapia, L; White, R; Chami, J; Sheigh, J S; Sullivan, J F; Stenzel, K H; Stubenbord, W T; Whitsell, J C; Rubin, A L


    Our results concur with earlier published work, by other groups, showing that LRD-recipient pairs with low MLC stimulation usually have better and more prolonged graft success than do those with higher stimulation. Specific HL-A compatibilities or incompatibilities did not seem to affect these results, nor did the presence of an increased number of common loci, short of increasing the apparent chromosome compatibility. The presence of pre-transplant cytotoxic antibodies, in patients with a high MI, however, may unfavorably affect the LRD transplant. The overall results of our LRD transplant experience is shown in Figure 1, and superimposed upon Figure 2, is the current extrapolation of data showing MLC stimulation and haplotype success. Thus, it appears that graft survival may be improved and more closely approach the levels seen in a full-house, diplotype match, by using the MLC results in considering patients for transplantation. Not all patients with a high MLC, however, (see table) reject their grafts and it is impossible to predict pre-transplant who will develop specific allograft enhancement. Before the MI becomes a specific criteria for transplant selection, additional studies of patient stimulation in MLC should be done. Suppression of stimulation by donor cells in autologous serum, as compared to the response to unrelated controls, might provide pre-transplant clues to the presence of enhancing factors. Such studies could provide an index that would be more meaningful than the MI in AB sera alone. Since overall results from both our series and from the Transplant Registry continue to indicate better long term graft survival for LRD than for cadaver transplants, and since the evidence suggests that a successful transplant offers a patient a better quality of life, as well as decreased morbidity and mortality compared to concomitant time spent on hemodialysis, continued LRD transplants with high MI is warranted in some circumstances with the patient

  4. Why we need interprofessional education to improve the delivery of safe and effective care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott Reeves


    Full Text Available Interprofessional education (IPE is an activity that involves two or more professions who learn interactively together to improve collaboration and the quality of care. Research has continually revealed that health and social care professionals encounter a range of problems with interprofessional coordination and collaboration which impact on the quality and safety of care. This empirical work resulted in policymakers across health care education and practice to invest in IPE to help resolve this collaborative failures. It is anticipated that IPE will provide health and social care professionals with the abilities required to work together effectively in providing safe high quality care to patients. Through a discussion of a range of key professional, educational and organization issues related to IPE, this paper argues that this form of education is an important strategy to improve the delivery of safe and effective care

  5. Continuous improvement and TQM in health care: an emerging operational paradigm becomes a strategic imperative. (United States)

    Swinehart, K; Green, R F


    Argues that US health care is in a state of crisis. Escalating costs account for 13 per cent of GNP, making health care the third largest industry in the USA, and spending is expected to increase. Claims health-care providers need to control rising costs, improve productivity and flexibility, adopt appropriate technologies, and maintain competitive levels of quality and value. States that TQM may provide an environment that will focus on quality of patient care and continuous quality improvement at all levels of the organization including the governing body, the administrative, managerial, and clinical areas. Any new national or state health-care plan will force providers to be more efficient while maintaining quality standards. Concludes that it will be strategically imperative that health-care providers ranging from family physicians to major medical centres and suppliers ranging from laboratories to pharmaceutical firms establish methods for making rapid continuous improvement and total quality management the cornerstone of the strategic planning process.

  6. Information provision in fertility care: a call for improvement.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mourad, S.M.; Hermens, R.P.M.G.; Cox-Witbraad, T.; Grol, R.P.T.M.; Nelen, W.L.D.M.; Kremer, J.A.M.


    BACKGROUND: Adequate information provision is a crucial dimension of high-quality fertility care. Clinical practice guidelines containing consensus-based recommendations may standardize practice between settings. This study was designed for three purposes: (i) to assess actual adherence to recommend

  7. Emergency care center turnaround time--an improvement story. (United States)

    Gelrud, Joan; Burroughs, Helen; Koterwas, Joanne


    Emergency department overcrowding is a nationally recognized barrier to patient safety. Other obstacles to efficiency and adequate care in emergency rooms include lengthy patient waits and side-tracked ambulances. This article explores one community hospital's approach to significantly decreasing emergency visit turnaround times while increasing patient satisfaction.

  8. Hypoxic preconditioning improves survival of cardiac progenitor cells: role of stromal cell derived factor-1α-CXCR4 axis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fengdi Yan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs have been shown to be suitable in stem cell therapy for resurrecting damaged myocardium, but poor retention of transplanted cells in the ischemic myocardium causes ineffective cell therapy. Hypoxic preconditioning of cells can increase the expression of CXCR4 and pro-survival genes to promote better cell survival; however, it is unknown whether hypoxia preconditioning will influence the survival and retention of CPCs via the SDF-1α/CXCR4 axis. METHODS AND RESULTS: CPCs were isolated from adult mouse hearts and purified by magnetic activated cell sorting using c-kit magnetic beads. These cells were cultured at various times in either normoxic or hypoxic conditions, and cell survival was analyzed using flow cytometry and the expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α, CXCR4, phosphorylated Akt and Bcl-2 were measured by Western blot. Results showed that the expression of pro-survival genes significantly increased after hypoxia treatment, especially in cells cultured in hypoxic conditions for six hours. Upon completion of hypoxia preconditioning from c-kit+ CPCs for six hours, the anti-apoptosis, migration and cardiac repair potential were evaluated. Results showed a significant enhancement in anti-apoptosis and migration in vitro, and better survival and cardiac function after being transplanted into acute myocardial infarction (MI mice in vivo. The beneficial effects induced by hypoxia preconditioning of c-kit+ CPCs could largely be blocked by the addition of CXCR4 selective antagonist AMD3100. CONCLUSIONS: Hypoxic preconditioning may improve the survival and retention of c-kit+ CPCs in the ischemic heart tissue through activating the SDF-1α/CXCR4 axis and the downstream anti-apoptosis pathway. Strategies targeting this aspect may enhance the effectiveness of cell-based cardiac regenerative therapy.

  9. Better Together: Co-Location of Dental and Primary Care Provides Opportunities to Improve Oral Health. (United States)

    Pourat, Nadereh; Martinez, Ana E; Crall, James J


    Community Health Centers (CHCs) are one of the principal safety-net providers of health care for low-income and uninsured populations. Co-locating dental services in primary care settings provides an opportunity to improve access to dental care. Yet this study of California CHCs that provide primary care services shows that only about one-third of them co-located primary and dental care services on-site. An additional one-third were members of multisite organizations in which at least one other site provided dental care. The remaining one-third of CHC sites had no dental care capacity. Policy options to promote co-location include requiring on-site availability of dental services, providing infrastructure funding to build and equip dental facilities, and offering financial incentives to provide dental care and recruit dental providers.

  10. Colorectal cancers detected through screening are associated with lower stages and improved survival

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindebjerg, Jan; Osler, Merete; Bisgaard, Claus


    detected through screening were diagnosed at significantly lower stages than among screening non-responders. There were relatively fewer locally advanced rectal cancers among patients diagnosed through positive FOBT than among non-responders. Survival among screening cancer patients was superior...... to that of all other screening groups. No effect of lead time was detected. Neither stage nor survival among patients who had a negative FOBT was inferior to the unscreened Danish population. CONCLUSION: The positive effect on survival among screening cancer patients is neither outbalanced by more advanced......INTRODUCTION: Population screening for colorectal cancer (CRC) using faecal occult blood test (FOBT) will be introduced in Denmark in 2014. Prior to the implementation of the screening programme, a feasibility study was performed in 2005-2006. In this paper, occurrences of colorectal cancer...

  11. Colorectal cancers detected through screening are associated with lower stages and improved survival

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindebjerg, Jan; Osler, Merete; Bisgaard, Claus Hedebo


    in the distribution of colon cancer stages and rectal cancer groups between the various screening categories were analysed through χ(2)-tests. Survival analysis with respect to screening groups was done by Kaplan-Meier and Cox-Mantel hazard ratios, and survival was corrected for lead time. RESULTS: Colon cancers......INTRODUCTION: Population screening for colorectal cancer (CRC) using faecal occult blood test (FOBT) will be introduced in Denmark in 2014. Prior to the implementation of the screening programme, a feasibility study was performed in 2005-2006. In this paper, occurrences of colorectal cancer...... in the feasibility study cohort were reviewed with respect to the effect of screening participation on stages and survival. MATERIAL AND METHODS: All cases of CRC in a feasibility study cohort diagnosed from the beginning of the study until two years after the study ended were identified. Differences...

  12. Improving the Survival of Arthrobacter sp., CW9 during Spray Drying Monitored by Scan Electric Microscope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenqiang Xia


    Full Text Available The culture of an aquaculture probiotic, i.e., Arthrobacter sp., CW9, was spray dried with different carriers/protectants, in which Scan Electric Microscope (SEM was used to analyze the surface of micro-paticles produced by spray-drying. Matrix of protectants, inlet temperature and feed rate were optimized according to the survival rate after spray drying. Scanning electron micrographs showed that cracks formed on the particle surface were a key factor in enhancing bacteria survival during spray-drying. Span-60 had synergism with Skim Milk Powder (SMP: trehalose (7.5%: 7.5%, w/v in protecting Arthrobacter sp., CW9 bacteria from heat injury, unlike SMP with trehalose. Particle size is an important factor influencing bacteria survival during spray drying and particle size itself was influenced by certain additives.

  13. Improving Perinatal Mental Health Care for Women Veterans: Description of a Quality Improvement Program. (United States)

    Katon, Jodie G; Lewis, Lacey; Hercinovic, Selma; McNab, Amanda; Fortney, John; Rose, Susan M


    Purpose We describe results from a quality improvement project undertaken to address perinatal mental healthcare for women veterans. Description This quality improvement project was conducted in a single VA healthcare system between 2012 and 2015 and included screening for depressive symptoms with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) three times during the perinatal period, a dedicated maternity care coordinator (MCC), an on-site clinical social worker, and an on-site obstetrician/gynecologist (Ob/gyn). Information on prior mental health diagnosis was collected by the MCC or Ob/gyn. The prevalence of perinatal depressive symptoms and receipt of mental healthcare among those with such symptoms are reported by presence of a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis. Assessment Of the 199 women who used VA maternity benefits between 2012 and 2015, 56% (n = 111) had at least one pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis. Compared to those without a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis, those with such a diagnosis were more likely to be screened for perinatal depressive symptoms at least once (61.5% vs. 46.8%, p = 0.04). Prevalence of depressive symptoms was 46.7% among those with a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and 19.2% among those without. Among those with a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and depressive symptoms (n = 35), 88% received outpatient mental healthcare and 77% met with the clinical social worker. Among those without a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and depressive symptoms (n = 8), none received outpatient mental healthcare, but 77.8% met with the clinical social worker. Conclusion Improving perinatal mental healthcare for women veterans requires a multidisciplinary approach, including on-site integrated mental healthcare.

  14. Prerequisites for sustainable care improvement using the reflective team as a work model. (United States)

    Jonasson, Lise-Lotte; Carlsson, Gunilla; Nyström, Maria


    Several work models for care improvement have been developed in order to meet the requirement for evidence-based care. This study examines a work model for reflection, entitled the reflective team (RT). The main idea behind RTs is that caring skills exist among those who work closest to the patients. The team leader (RTL) encourages sustainable care improvement, rooted in research and proven experience, by using a lifeworld perspective to stimulate further reflection and a developmental process leading to research-based caring actions within the team. In order to maintain focus, it is important that the RTL has a clear idea of what sustainable care improvement means, and what the prerequisites are for such improvement. The aim of the present study is, therefore, to explore the prerequisites for improving sustainable care, seeking to answer how RTLs perceive these and use RTs for concrete planning. Nine RTLs were interviewed, and their statements were phenomenographically analysed. The analysis revealed three separate qualitative categories, which describe personal, interpersonal, and structural aspects of the prerequisites. In the discussion, these categories are compared with previous research on reflection, and the conclusion is reached that the optimal conditions for RTs to work, when focussed on sustainable care improvement, occur when the various aspects of the prerequisites are intertwined and become a natural part of the reflective work.

  15. Improving coordination of care centers for the elderly through IT support

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Andreas Kaas; Lauridsen, Frederik Vahr Bjarnø; Manea, Vlad;


    In Denmark, care of elderly people involves numerous and relatively autonomous care providers, including care centers, activity centers, physiotherapists, doctors, and other specialists. However, due to a poor coordination of activities, many elderly experience a lack of continuity of care, missed...... appointments, and general discomfort. In this poster we report on preliminary findings from a project aimed at creating improved IT support for coordination of care for the elderly in a Danish municipality. We propose that in order to successfully support heterogeneous collaboration, our system must address...... the disruptions in the existing routines, minimize the inherent articulation work, and coherently unify their coordination mechanisms....

  16. Utilization of performance appraisal systems in health care organizations and improvement strategies for supervisors. (United States)

    Chandra, Ashish; Frank, Zachary D


    Performance appraisal systems that are designed to objectively evaluate an employee's performance and then outline measures to be taken for improvements are essential for an organization to move ahead. These systems are often organization specific and health care organizations are no exception. However, health care managers seem to be more vocal and have often expressed dissatisfaction with the use of their company's performance appraisal system. This article is based on a case study of a health care organization's current performance appraisal techniques. This organization's current use of performance appraisals are discussed in brief, and strategies for health care organizations to improve their performance appraisal system have also been identified.

  17. Peer pressure and public reporting within healthcare setting: improving accountability and health care quality in hospitals. (United States)

    Specchia, Maria Lucia; Veneziano, Maria Assunta; Cadeddu, Chiara; Ferriero, Anna Maria; Capizzi, Silvio; Ricciardi, Walter


    In the last few years, the need of public reporting of health outcomes has acquired a great importance. The public release of performance results could be a tool for improving health care quality and many attempts have been made in order to introduce public reporting programs within the health care context at different levels. It would be necessary to promote the introduction of a standardized set of outcome and performance measures in order to improve quality of health care services and to make health care providers aware of the importance of transparency and accountability.

  18. Integrating Literacy, Culture, and Language to Improve Health Care Quality for Diverse Populations (United States)

    Andrulis, Dennis P.; Brach, Cindy


    Objective To understand the interrelationship of literacy, culture, and language and the importance of addressing their intersection. Methods Health literacy, cultural competence, and linguistic competence strategies to quality improvement were analyzed. Results Strategies to improve health literacy for low-literate individuals are distinct from strategies for culturally diverse and individuals with limited English proficiency (LEP). The lack of integration results in health care that is unresponsive to some vulnerable groups’ needs. A vision for integrated care is presented. Conclusion Clinicians, the health care team, and health care organizations have important roles to play in addressing challenges related to literacy, culture, and language. PMID:17931131

  19. Improved survival prediction from lung function data in a large population sample

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miller, M.R.; Pedersen, O.F.; Lange, P.


    mortality in the Copenhagen City Heart Study data. Cox regression models were derived for survival over 25 years in 13,900 subjects. Age on entry, sex, smoking status, body mass index, previous myocardial infarction and diabetes were putative predictors together with FEV1 either as raw data, standardised....... In univariate predictions of all cause mortality the HR for FEV1/ht(2) categories was 2-4 times higher than those for FEV1PP and 3-10 times higher for airway related tung disease mortality. We conclude that FEV1/ht(2) is superior to FEV1PP for predicting survival. in a general population and this method...

  20. Quinic Acid Could Be a Potential Rejuvenating Natural Compound by Improving Survival of Caenorhabditis elegans under Deleterious Conditions (United States)

    Zhang, Longze; Zhang, Junjing


    Abstract Quinic acid (QA) is an active ingredient of Cat's Claw (Uncaria tomentosa), which is found to be active in enhancing DNA repair and immunity in model systems and able to generate neuroprotective effects in neurons. However, QA's role in improving survival is not well studied. Here we report that QA can provide protection in Caenorhabidits elegans and improve worm survival under stress. Under heat stress and oxidative stress, QA-treated wild-type C. elegans N2 (N2) survived 17.8% and 29.7% longer, respectively, than the control worms. Our data suggest that under heat stress, QA can upregulate the expression of the small heat shock protein hsp-16.2 gene, which could help the worms survive a longer time. We also found that QA extended the C. elegans mutant VC475 [hsp-16.2 (gk249)] life span by 15.7% under normal culture conditions. However, under normal culture conditions, QA did not affect hsp-16.2 expression, but upregulated the expression of daf-16 and sod-3 in a DAF-16–dependent manner, and downregulated the level of reactive oxygen species (ROS), suggesting that under normal conditions QA acts in different pathways. As a natural product, QA demonstrates great potential as a rejuvenating compound. PMID:22950425

  1. Treatment Summaries and Follow-Up Care Instructions for Cancer Survivors: Improving Survivor Self-Efficacy and Health Care Utilization (United States)

    Kvale, Elizabeth A.; Rocque, Gabrielle B.; Demark-Wahnefried, Wendy; Martin, Michelle Y.; Jackson, Bradford E.; Meneses, Karen; Partridge, Edward E.; Pisu, Maria


    Background. Treatment summaries and follow-up care plan information should be provided to cancer survivors. This study examines the association of receiving summaries and care plans with cancer survivor self-efficacy for chronic illness management, and whether self-efficacy was associated with health care utilization. Methods. Four hundred forty-one cancer survivors (≥2 years from diagnosis and had completed treatment) ≥65 years old from 12 cancer centers across 5 states completed telephone surveys. Survivors responded to three questions about receiving a written treatment summary, written follow-up plan, and an explanation of follow-up care plans. Respondents completed the Stanford Chronic Illness Management Self-Efficacy Scale and reported emergency room visits and hospitalizations in the past year. Three multiple linear regression models estimated the association of written treatment summary, written follow-up care plan, and verbal explanation of follow-up plan with total self-efficacy score. Log-binomial models estimated the association of self-efficacy scores with emergency room visits and hospitalizations (yes/no). Results. Among survivors, 40% and 35% received a written treatment summary and follow-up care plan, respectively. Seventy-nine percent received an explanation of follow-up care plans. Receiving a verbal explanation of follow-up care instructions was significantly associated with higher self-efficacy scores (β = 0.72, p = .009). Higher self-efficacy scores were significantly associated with lower prevalence ratios of emergency room visits (prevalence ratio, 0.92; 95% confidence interval, 0.88–0.97) and hospitalizations (prevalence ratio, 0.94; 95% confidence interval, 0.89–0.99). Conclusion. Explanation of the follow-up care plan, beyond the written component, enhances survivor self-efficacy for managing cancer as a chronic condition—an important mediator for improving health care utilization outcomes. Implications for Practice: Older

  2. [Community resources prescription for self-care improvement in chronic illnesses. Clinical case management in Primary Health Care]. (United States)

    Pérez-Vico-Díaz de Rada, Lucía; González-Suárez, Miriam; Duarte-Clíments, Gonzalo; Brito-Brito, Pedro Ruymán


    A case is presented of a 52 year-old male seen in a Primary Care nursing clinic for a type 2 diabetes mellitus metabolic control. The frequency of the visits increased due to perceived difficulties caused by changing the medical treatment. A focused interview was conducted under functional health patterns framework. The patient was unable to write or read, had not worked for the last 25 years, and expressed a lack of control over his self-care. An action plan was prepared, prioritizing Ineffective Health Maintenance, Powerlessness, and Impaired Social Interaction NANDA-I nursing diagnoses. The goals were set at improving knowledge and control over his disease and participating in leisure activities. To achieve these, the social health resources in the area were contacted, and agreed that the patient could attend activities that could improve his self-care and his quality of life. An improvement in his diabetes control was observed in the following evaluations, with an increase in his level of knowledge and self-care. The Primary Health care nurse should consider available community resources by using a comprehensive approach to chronic diseases for their therapeutic benefit and management, especially in those patients with adverse sociocultural conditions.

  3. Care coordination between specialty care and primary care: a focus group study of provider perspectives on strong practices and improvement opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kim B


    Full Text Available Bo Kim,1,2 Michelle A Lucatorto,3 Kara Hawthorne,4 Janis Hersh,5 Raquel Myers,6 A Rani Elwy,1,7 Glenn D Graham81Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research, Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial VA Hospital, Bedford, 2Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, 3Office of Nursing Services, Department of Veterans Affairs, 4Chief Business Office, Purchased Care, Washington, DC, 5New England Veterans Engineering Resource Center, Boston, MA, 6SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, 7Department of Health Policy and Management, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA, 8Specialty Care Services (10P4E, Department of Veterans Affairs, Washington, DC, USAAbstract: Care coordination between the specialty care provider (SCP and the primary care provider (PCP is a critical component of safe, efficient, and patient-centered care. Veterans Health Administration conducted a series of focus groups of providers, from specialty care and primary care clinics at VA Medical Centers nationally, to assess 1 what SCPs and PCPs perceive to be current practices that enable or hinder effective care coordination with one another and 2 how these perceptions differ between the two groups of providers. A qualitative thematic analysis of the gathered data validates previous studies that identify communication as being an important enabler of coordination, and uncovers relationship building between specialty care and primary care (particularly through both formal and informal relationship-building opportunities such as collaborative seminars and shared lunch space, respectively to be the most notable facilitator of effective communication between the two sides. Results from this study suggest concrete next steps that medical facilities can take to improve care coordination, using as their basis the mutual understanding and respect developed between SCPs and PCPs through relationship-building efforts

  4. Aligning health information technologies with effective service delivery models to improve chronic disease care (United States)

    Bauer, Amy M.; Thielke, Stephen M.; Katon, Wayne; Unützer, Jürgen; Areán, Patricia


    Objective Healthcare reforms in the United States, including the Affordable Care and HITECH Acts, and the NCQA criteria for the Patient Centered Medical Home have promoted health information technology (HIT) and the integration of general medical and mental health services. These developments, which aim to improve chronic disease care have largely occurred in parallel, with little attention to the need for coordination. In this article, the fundamental connections between HIT and improvements in chronic disease management are explored. We use the evidence-based collaborative care model as an example, with attention to health literacy improvement for supporting patient engagement in care. Method A review of the literature was conducted to identify how HIT and collaborative care, an evidence-based model of chronic disease care, support each other. Results Five key principles of effective collaborative care are outlined: care is patient-centered, evidence-based, measurement-based, population-based, and accountable. The potential role of HIT in implementing each principle is discussed. Key features of the mobile health paradigm are described, including how they can extend evidence-based treatment beyond traditional clinical settings. Conclusion HIT, and particularly mobile health, can enhance collaborative care interventions, and thus improve the health of individuals and populations when deployed in integrated delivery systems. PMID:24963895

  5. Telestroke a viable option to improve stroke care in India. (United States)

    Srivastava, Padma V; Sudhan, Paulin; Khurana, Dheeraj; Bhatia, Rohit; Kaul, Subash; Sylaja, P N; Moonis, Majaz; Pandian, Jeyaraj Durai


    In India, stroke care services are not well developed. There is a need to explore alternative options to tackle the rising burden of stroke. Telemedicine has been used by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) to meet the needs of remote hospitals in India. The telemedicine network implemented by ISRO in 2001 presently stretches to around 100 hospitals all over the country, with 78 remote/rural/district health centers connected to 22 specialty hospitals in major cities, thus providing treatment to more than 25 000 patients, which includes stroke patients. Telemedicine is currently used in India for diagnosing stroke patients, subtyping stroke as ischemic or hemorrhagic, and treating accordingly. However, a dedicated telestroke system for providing acute stroke care is needed. Keeping in mind India's flourishing technology sector and leading communication networks, the hub-and-spoke model could work out really well in the upcoming years. Until then, simpler alternatives like smartphones, online data transfer, and new mobile applications like WhatsApp could be used. Telestroke facilities could increase the pool of patients eligible for thrombolysis. But this primary aim of telestroke can be achieved in India only if thrombolysis and imaging techniques are made available at all levels of health care.

  6. Chronic disease management: improving care for people with osteoarthritis. (United States)

    Brand, Caroline A; Ackerman, Ilana N; Tropea, Joanne


    Chronic disease management (CDM) service models are being developed for many conditions; however, there is limited evidence to support their effectiveness in osteoarthritis (OA). A systematic review was undertaken to examine effectiveness, cost effectiveness and barriers to the use of osteoarthritis-chronic disease management (OA-CDM) service models. Thirteen eligible studies (eight randomised controlled trial (RCTs)) were identified. The majority focussed on delivery system design (n = 9) and/or providing self-management support (SMS) (n = 8). Overall, reported model effectiveness varied, and where positive impacts on process or health outcomes were observed, they were of small to moderate effect. There was no information about cost effectiveness. There is some evidence to support the use of collaborative care/multidisciplinary case management models in primary and community care and evidence-based pathways/standardisation of care in hospital settings. Multiple barriers were identified. Future research should focus on identifying the effective components of multi-faceted interventions and evaluating cost-effectiveness to support clinical and policy decision-making.

  7. Centralized treatment of advanced stages of ovarian cancer improves survival: a nationwide Danish survey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fagö-Olsen, Carsten L; Høgdall, Claus; Kehlet, Henrik;


    Objective. This retrospective, nationwide, observational study was designed to compare treatment in tertiary referral centers vs. regional hospitals on overall survival for patients with stage IIIC and IV ovarian cancer. Material and methods. The study took place in all gynecological departments ...

  8. Modelling p-value distributions to improve theme-driven survival analysis of cancer transcriptome datasets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brors Benedikt


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Theme-driven cancer survival studies address whether the expression signature of genes related to a biological process can predict patient survival time. Although this should ideally be achieved by testing two separate null hypotheses, current methods treat both hypotheses as one. The first test should assess whether a geneset, independent of its composition, is associated with prognosis (frequently done with a survival test. The second test then verifies whether the theme of the geneset is relevant (usually done with an empirical test that compares the geneset of interest with random genesets. Current methods do not test this second null hypothesis because it has been assumed that the distribution of p-values for random genesets (when tested against the first null hypothesis is uniform. Here we demonstrate that such an assumption is generally incorrect and consequently, such methods may erroneously associate the biology of a particular geneset with cancer prognosis. Results To assess the impact of non-uniform distributions for random genesets in such studies, an automated theme-driven method was developed. This method empirically approximates the p-value distribution of sets of unrelated genes based on a permutation approach, and tests whether predefined sets of biologically-related genes are associated with survival. The results from a comparison with a published theme-driven approach revealed non-uniform distributions, suggesting a significant problem exists with false positive rates in the original study. When applied to two public cancer datasets our technique revealed novel ontological categories with prognostic power, including significant correlations between "fatty acid metabolism" with overall survival in breast cancer, as well as "receptor mediated endocytosis", "brain development", "apical plasma membrane" and "MAPK signaling pathway" with overall survival in lung cancer. Conclusions Current methods of theme

  9. Improved Auditory Nerve Survival with Nanoengineered Supraparticles for Neurotrophin Delivery into the Deafened Cochlea (United States)

    Tan, Justin; Wang, Yajun; Caruso, Frank; Shepherd, Robert K.


    Cochlear implants electrically stimulate spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) in order to provide speech cues to severe-profoundly deaf patients. In normal hearing cochleae the SGNs depend on endogenous neurotrophins secreted by sensory cells in the organ of Corti for survival. SGNs gradually degenerate following deafness and consequently there is considerable interest in developing clinically relevant strategies to provide exogenous neurotrophins to preserve SGN survival. The present study investigated the safety and efficacy of a drug delivery system for the cochlea using nanoengineered silica supraparticles. In the present study we delivered Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) over a period of four weeks and evaluated SGN survival as a measure of efficacy. Supraparticles were bilaterally implanted into the basal turn of cochleae in profoundly deafened guinea pigs. One ear received BDNF-loaded supraparticles and the other ear control (unloaded) supraparticles. After one month of treatment the cochleae were examined histologically. There was significantly greater survival of SGNs in cochleae that received BDNF supraparticles compared to the contralateral control cochleae (repeated measures ANOVA, p = 0.009). SGN survival was observed over a wide extent of the cochlea. The supraparticles were well tolerated within the cochlea with a tissue response that was localised to the site of implantation in the cochlear base. Although mild, the tissue response was significantly greater in cochleae treated with BDNF supraparticles compared to the controls (repeated measures ANOVA, p = 0.003). These data support the clinical potential of this technology particularly as the supraparticles can be loaded with a variety of therapeutic drugs. PMID:27788219

  10. The INTERACT Quality Improvement Program: An Overview for Medical Directors and Primary Care Clinicians in Long-Term Care (United States)

    Ouslander, Joseph G.; Bonner, Alice; Herndon, Laurie; Shutes, Jill


    INTERACT is a publicly available quality improvement program that focuses on improving the identification, evaluation, and management of acute changes in condition of nursing home residents. Effective implementation has been associated with substantial reductions in hospitalization of nursing home residents. Familiarity with and support of program implementation by medical directors and primary care clinicians in the nursing home setting are essential to effectiveness and sustainability of the program over time. In addition to helping nursing homes prevent unnecessary hospitalizations and their related complications and costs, and thereby continuing to be or becoming attractive partners for hospitals, health care systems, managed care plans, and ACOs, effective INTERACT implementation will assist nursing homes in meeting the new requirement for a robust QAPI program which is being rolled out by the federal government over the next year. PMID:24513226

  11. Improving quality of care among COPD outpatients in Denmark 2008-2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tøttenborg, Sandra Søgaard; Lange, P.; Thomsen, R.W.;


    OBJECTIVE: To examine whether the quality of care among Danish patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has improved since the initiation of a national multidisciplinary quality improvement program. METHODS: We conducted a nationwide, population-based prospective cohort study...... a substantial improvement in the quality of care of COPD in Danish hospitals following the initiation of a national multidisciplinary quality improvement program in 2008. In the forthcoming years, it will be interesting to observe if this will translate into a better prognosis of Danish patients with COPD....... using data from the Danish Clinical Register of COPD (DrCOPD). Since 2008 the register has systematically monitored and audited the use of recommended processes of COPD care. RESULTS: Substantial improvements were observed for all processes of care and registration fulfillment increased to well above 85...

  12. A quality improvement study using fishbone analysis and an electronic medical records intervention to improve care for children with asthma. (United States)

    Gold, Jonathan; Reyes-Gastelum, David; Turner, Jane; Davies, H Dele


    Despite expert guidelines, gaps persist in quality of care for children with asthma. This study sought to identify barriers and potential interventions to improve compliance to national asthma prevention guidelines at a single academic pediatric primary care clinic. Using the plan-do-check-act (PDCA) quality improvement framework and fishbone analysis, several barriers to consistent asthma processes and possible interventions were identified by a group of key stakeholders. Two interventions were implemented using the electronic medical record (EMR). Physician documentation of asthma quality measures were analyzed before intervention and during 2 subsequent time points over 16 months. Documentation of asthma action plans (core group P asthma care in a pediatric primary care setting.

  13. Care Coordination Associated with Improved Timing of Newborn Primary Care Visits. (United States)

    Goyal, Neera K; Hall, Eric S; Kahn, Robert S; Wexelblatt, Scott L; Greenberg, James M; Samaan, Zeina M; Brown, Courtney M


    Objective Despite practice recommendations that all newborns be examined within 3-5 days after discharge, many are not seen within this timeframe. Our objective was to determine the association between care coordination and timing of newborn follow-up. Methods This retrospective study evaluated 6251 newborns from eight maternity hospitals who scheduled a primary care appointment at one of two academic pediatric practices over 3.5 years. Two programs were sequentially implemented: (1) newborn discharge coordination, and (2) primary care intake coordination. Primary outcome was days between discharge and follow-up, dichotomized as ≤ or >5 days. Number of rescheduled appointments and loss to follow-up were also assessed. Adjusted relative risks (RR) and odds ratios (OR) were determined by piecewise generalized linear and logistic regression. Results Among 5943 newborns with a completed visit, 52.9 % were seen within 5 days of discharge (mean 6.7 days). After multivariable adjustment, the pre-exposure period (8 months) demonstrated a downward monthly trend in completing early follow-up (RR 0.93, p coordinator implementation and roughly 33 % after primary care coordinator implementation. The latter was also associated with a 13 % monthly decrease in odds of loss to follow-up (OR 0.87, p Care coordination increases adherence among low income families to recommended newborn follow-up after birth hospitalization.

  14. Deferasirox and vitamin D improves overall survival in elderly patients with acute myeloid leukemia after demethylating agents failure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Etienne Paubelle

    Full Text Available The prognosis of acute myeloid leukemia (AML in elderly (≥65 years patients is poor and treatment remains non-consensual especially for those who are not eligible for intensive therapies. Our group has shown that in vitro the iron chelator deferasirox (DFX synergizes with vitamin D (VD to promote monocyte differentiation in primary AML cells. Herein, we present results from a retrospective case-control study in which the association of DFX (1-2 g/d and 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (100,000 IU/week (DFX/VD was proposed to patients following demethylating agents failure. Median survival of patients treated with DFX/VD combination (n = 17 was significantly increased in comparison with matched patients receiving best supportive care (BSC alone (n = 13 (10.4 versus 4 months respectively. In addition, the only factor associated to an increased overall survival in DFX/VD-treated patients was serum VD levels. We conclude that DFX/VD treatment correlated with increased overall survival of AML patients in this retrospective cohort of elderly patients.

  15. Deferasirox and Vitamin D Improves Overall Survival in Elderly Patients with Acute Myeloid Leukemia after Demethylating Agents Failure (United States)

    Suarez, Felipe; Callens, Céline; Dussiot, Michaël; Isnard, Françoise; Rubio, Marie-Thérèse; Damaj, Gandhi; Gorin, Norbert-Claude; Marolleau, Jean-Pierre; Monteiro, Renato C.; Moura, Ivan C.; Hermine, Olivier


    The prognosis of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in elderly (≥65 years) patients is poor and treatment remains non-consensual especially for those who are not eligible for intensive therapies. Our group has shown that in vitro the iron chelator deferasirox (DFX) synergizes with vitamin D (VD) to promote monocyte differentiation in primary AML cells. Herein, we present results from a retrospective case-control study in which the association of DFX (1–2 g/d) and 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (100,000 IU/week) (DFX/VD) was proposed to patients following demethylating agents failure. Median survival of patients treated with DFX/VD combination (n = 17) was significantly increased in comparison with matched patients receiving best supportive care (BSC) alone (n = 13) (10.4 versus 4 months respectively). In addition, the only factor associated to an increased overall survival in DFX/VD-treated patients was serum VD levels. We conclude that DFX/VD treatment correlated with increased overall survival of AML patients in this retrospective cohort of elderly patients. PMID:23840388

  16. Clinical features and survival in individuals with trisomy 18: A retrospective one-center study of 44 patients who received intensive care treatments. (United States)

    Imataka, George; Suzumura, Hiroshi; Arisaka, Osamu


    Trisomy 18 syndrome is a common autosomal aneuploidy chromosomal abnormality caused by the presence of extra chromosome 18 that leads to malformations of various parts of the body. In this study, we retrospectively investigated the effect of the medical progression and prognosis of 44 cases of trisomy 18, admitted to our neonatal intensive care unit between 1992 and 2013. The patients were divided into group A (n=20, 1992‑2002) and group B (n=24, 2003‑2012). Following delivery, karyotype, gender, gestational weeks, birth place, cesarean section, Apgar score and birth weight were analyzed using the Fisher's exact test, unpaired t‑test and Mann‑Whitney U test. Based on the statistical results, a comparison was made of the two groups and no significant differences were observed. Clinical data of major complications, mechanical ventilation, discharge from hospital and survival days were reviewed for the cases of trisomy 18. Of the 44 patients, 42 had cardiac anomaly, 16 had esophageal atresia, and 3 patients had brain anomaly. Ventilation treatment was performed in 29 cases (65.9%) and an increased percentage was identified in group B patients. The percentage survival was estimated using Kaplan‑Meier curves and the two groups were analyzed using the generalized Wilcoxon test. Improvement in life prognosis was observed in group B as compared to group A. The log‑rank test was used to assess survey periods of 180 days, 1 year, and the entire observation period. Although significant differences were observed for the prognosis of trisomy 18 at 180 days after birth, after 1 year and the entire survey period after birth, the significant differences were not confirmed. In conclusion, results of the present study provide information concerning genetic counseling for parents/guardians and life prognosis, prior to applying intensive management to newborns with trisomy 18.

  17. Geisinger's ProvenCare methodology: driving performance improvement within a shared governance structure. (United States)

    Nolan, Ruth; Wary, Andrea; King, Megan; Laam, Leslie A; Hallick, Susan


    Many performance improvement projects fail because they occur in parallel to the organization's shared governance structure. Leveraging the full potential of its nursing shared governance structure, Geisinger Health System's ProvenCare methodology harnessed the full potential of its staff nurses to create truly reliable workflows that benefit patients and that the team finds professionally satisfying. Using ProvenCare Perinatal and its smoking cessation education intervention and outcomes as an example, the authors describe the ProvenCare methodology.

  18. Comparing the implementation of team approaches for improving diabetes care in community health centers


    Wees, P.J. van der; Friedberg, M.W.; Guzman, E.; Ayanian, J.Z.; Rodriguez, H.P.


    Background Patient panel management and community-based care management may be viable strategies for community health centers to improve the quality of diabetes care for vulnerable patient populations. The objective of our study was to clarify implementation processes and experiences of integrating office-based medical assistant (MA) panel management and community health worker (CHW) community-based management into routine care for diabetic patients. Methods Mixed m...

  19. Improving health care costing with resource consumption accounting. (United States)

    Ozyapici, Hasan; Tanis, Veyis Naci


    Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to explore the differences between a traditional costing system (TCS) and resource consumption accounting (RCA) based on a case study carried out in a hospital. Design/methodology/approach - A descriptive case study was first carried out to identify the current costing system of the case hospital. An exploratory case study was then conducted to reveal how implementing RCA within the case hospital assigns costs differently to gallbladder surgeries than the current costing system (i.e. a TCS). Findings - The study showed that, in contrast to a TCS, RCA considers the unused capacity, which is the difference between the work that can be performed based on current resources and the work that is actually being performed. Therefore, it assigns lower total costs to open and laparoscopic gallbladder surgeries. The study also showed that by separating costs into fixed and variable RCA allows managers to benefit from a pricing strategy based on the difference between the service's selling price and variable costs incurred in providing that service. Research limitations/implications - The limitation of this study is that, because of time constraints, the implementation was performed in the general surgery department only. However, since RCA is an advanced system that has the same application procedures for any department inside in a hospital, managers need only time gaps to implement this system to all parts of the hospital. Practical implications - This study concluded that RCA is better than a TCS for use in health care settings that have high overhead costs because it accurately assigns overhead costs to services by considering unused capacities incurred by a hospital. Consequently, this study provides insight into both measuring and managing unused capacities within the health care sector. This study also concluded that RCA helps health care administrators increase their competitive advantage by allowing them to determine the lowest

  20. A Stronger Patient Voice Improves Transparency and Care. (United States)

    Wadsworth, Barbara; Harmer, Catherine A


    In the 2nd of a 3-part series on the value of patient and family advisory councils, an early adopter at a large, Magnet®-recognized healthcare system reveals ways in which an environment focused on strong partnerships, a culture of safety, and a commitment to transparency led to the creation of successful councils at multiple hospitals. The authors discuss nursing's integral role in championing and leading the councils, as well as the benefits of a strong patient-family voice in hospital operations and care processes.

  1. Using routine data to improve palliative and end of life care. (United States)

    Davies, Joanna M; Gao, Wei; Sleeman, Katherine E; Lindsey, Katie; Murtagh, Fliss E; Teno, Joan M; Deliens, Luc; Wee, Bee; Higginson, Irene J; Verne, Julia


    Palliative and end of life care is essential to healthcare systems worldwide, yet a minute proportion of research funding is spent on palliative and end of life care research. Routinely collected health and social care data provide an efficient and useful opportunity for evaluating and improving care for patients and families. There are excellent examples of routine data research in palliative and end of life care, but routine data resources are widely underutilised. We held four workshops on using routinely collected health and social care data in palliative and end of life care. Researchers presented studies from the UK, USA and Europe. The aim was to highlight valuable examples of work with routine data including work with death registries, hospital activity records, primary care data and specialist palliative care registers. This article disseminates that work, describes the benefits of routine data research and identifies major challenges for the future use of routine data, including; access to data, improving data linkage, and the need for more palliative and end of life care specific data.

  2. How can we improve antibiotic prescribing in primary care?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dyar, Oliver J.; Beović, Bojana; Vlahović-Palčevski, Vera; Verheij, Theo; Pulcini, Céline


    Antibiotic stewardship is a necessity given the worldwide antimicrobial resistance crisis. Outpatient antibiotic use represents around 90% of total antibiotic use, with more than half of these prescriptions being either unnecessary or inappropriate. Efforts to improve antibiotic prescribing need to

  3. Comparing the implementation of team approaches for improving diabetes care in community health centers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wees, P.J. van der; Friedberg, M.W.; Guzman, E.; Ayanian, J.Z.; Rodriguez, H.P.


    BackgroundPatient panel management and community-based care management may be viable strategies for community health centers to improve the quality of diabetes care for vulnerable patient populations. The objective of our study was to clarify implementation processes and experiences of integrating o

  4. Improving patient handovers from hospital to primary care: a systematic review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hesselink, G.; Schoonhoven, L.; Barach, P.; Spijker, A.; Gademan, P.; Kalkman, C.; Liefers, J.; Vernooij-Dassen, M.J.F.J.; Wollersheim, H.


    BACKGROUND: Evidence shows that suboptimum handovers at hospital discharge lead to increased rehospitalizations and decreased quality of health care. PURPOSE: To systematically review interventions that aim to improve patient discharge from hospital to primary care. DATA SOURCES: PubMed, CINAHL, Psy

  5. What do primary care physicians and researchers consider the most important patient safety improvement strategies?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gaal, S.; Verstappen, W.H.J.M.; Wensing, M.J.P.


    BACKGROUND: Although it has been increasingly recognised that patient safety in primary care is important, little is known about the feasibility and effectiveness of different strategies to improve patient safety in primary care. In this study, we aimed to identify the most important strategies by c

  6. Adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cell administration does not improve corneal graft survival outcome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sherezade Fuentes-Julián

    Full Text Available The effect of local and systemic injections of mesenchymal stem cells derived from adipose tissue (AD-MSC into rabbit models of corneal allograft rejection with either normal-risk or high-risk vascularized corneal beds was investigated. The models we present in this study are more similar to human corneal transplants than previously reported murine models. Our aim was to prevent transplant rejection and increase the length of graft survival. In the normal-risk transplant model, in contrast to our expectations, the injection of AD-MSC into the graft junction during surgery resulted in the induction of increased signs of inflammation such as corneal edema with increased thickness, and a higher level of infiltration of leukocytes. This process led to a lower survival of the graft compared with the sham-treated corneal transplants. In the high-risk transplant model, in which immune ocular privilege was undermined by the induction of neovascularization prior to graft surgery, we found the use of systemic rabbit AD-MSCs prior to surgery, during surgery, and at various time points after surgery resulted in a shorter survival of the graft compared with the non-treated corneal grafts. Based on our results, local or systemic treatment with AD-MSCs to prevent corneal rejection in rabbit corneal models at normal or high risk of rejection does not increase survival but rather can increase inflammation and neovascularization and break the innate ocular immune privilege. This result can be partially explained by the immunomarkers, lack of immunosuppressive ability and immunophenotypical secretion molecules characterization of AD-MSC used in this study. Parameters including the risk of rejection, the inflammatory/vascularization environment, the cell source, the time of injection, the immunosuppression, the number of cells, and the mode of delivery must be established before translating the possible benefits of the use of MSCs in corneal transplants to clinical

  7. Designing and implementing a primary care intervention trial to improve the quality and outcome of care for major depression. (United States)

    Rost, K; Nutting, P A; Smith, J; Werner, J J


    Complex interventions, which have been shown to improve primary care depression outcomes, are difficult to disseminate to routine practice settings. To address this problem, we developed a brief intervention to train primary care physicians and nurses employed by the practice to improve the detection and management of major depression. Before recruitment began, the research team conducted academic detailing conference calls with primary care physicians and nurses, and provided in-person training with nurses and administrative staff. Administrative staff screened over 11,000 patients before their visits to identify those with probable major depression. Primary care physicians delegated increased responsibility to office nurses, who educated over 90% of patients about effective depression treatment and systematically monitored their progress over time. Early results demonstrate that community primary care practices can rebundle traditional team roles over the short-term to provide more systematic mental health treatment without adding additional personnel. A rigorous evaluation of this effort will reduce time-consuming, expensive, and often unsuccessful efforts to "translate" research intervention findings into everyday practice.

  8. Encapsulated Whole Bone Marrow Cells Improve Survival in Wistar Rats after 90% Partial Hepatectomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Uribe-Cruz


    Full Text Available Background and Aims. The use of bone marrow cells has been suggested as an alternative treatment for acute liver failure. In this study, we investigate the effect of encapsulated whole bone marrow cells in a liver failure model. Methods. Encapsulated cells or empty capsules were implanted in rats submitted to 90% partial hepatectomy. The survival rate was assessed. Another group was euthanized at 6, 12, 24, 48, and 72 hours after hepatectomy to study expression of cytokines and growth factors. Results. Whole bone marrow group showed a higher than 10 days survival rate compared to empty capsules group. Gene expression related to early phase of liver regeneration at 6 hours after hepatectomy was decreased in encapsulated cells group, whereas genes related to regeneration were increased at 12, 24, and 48 hours. Whole bone marrow group showed lower regeneration rate at 72 hours and higher expression and activity of caspase 3. In contrast, lysosomal-β-glucuronidase activity was elevated in empty capsules group. Conclusions. The results show that encapsulated whole bone marrow cells reduce the expression of genes involved in liver regeneration and increase those responsible for ending hepatocyte division. In addition, these cells favor apoptotic cell death and decrease necrosis, thus increasing survival.

  9. Hair Follicle Dermal Sheath Derived Cells Improve Islet Allograft Survival without Systemic Immunosuppression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaojie Wang


    Full Text Available Immunosuppressive drugs successfully prevent rejection of islet allografts in the treatment of type I diabetes. However, the drugs also suppress systemic immunity increasing the risk of opportunistic infection and cancer development in allograft recipients. In this study, we investigated a new treatment for autoimmune diabetes using naturally immune privileged, hair follicle derived, autologous cells to provide localized immune protection of islet allotransplants. Islets from Balb/c mouse donors were cotransplanted with syngeneic hair follicle dermal sheath cup cells (DSCC, group 1 or fibroblasts (FB, group 2 under the kidney capsule of immune-competent, streptozotocin induced, diabetic C57BL/6 recipients. Group 1 allografts survived significantly longer than group 2 (32.2 ± 12.2 versus 14.1 ± 3.3 days, P<0.001 without administration of any systemic immunosuppressive agents. DSCC reduced T cell activation in the renal lymph node, prevented graft infiltrates, modulated inflammatory chemokine and cytokine profiles, and preserved better beta cell function in the islet allografts, but no systemic immunosuppression was observed. In summary, DSCC prolong islet allograft survival without systemic immunosuppression by local modulation of alloimmune responses, enhancing of beta cell survival, and promoting of graft revascularization. This novel finding demonstrates the capacity of easily accessible hair follicle cells to be used as local immunosuppression agents in islet transplantation.

  10. Hair follicle dermal sheath derived cells improve islet allograft survival without systemic immunosuppression. (United States)

    Wang, Xiaojie; Hao, Jianqiang; Leung, Gigi; Breitkopf, Trisia; Wang, Eddy; Kwong, Nicole; Akhoundsadegh, Noushin; Warnock, Garth L; Shapiro, Jerry; McElwee, Kevin J


    Immunosuppressive drugs successfully prevent rejection of islet allografts in the treatment of type I diabetes. However, the drugs also suppress systemic immunity increasing the risk of opportunistic infection and cancer development in allograft recipients. In this study, we investigated a new treatment for autoimmune diabetes using naturally immune privileged, hair follicle derived, autologous cells to provide localized immune protection of islet allotransplants. Islets from Balb/c mouse donors were cotransplanted with syngeneic hair follicle dermal sheath cup cells (DSCC, group 1) or fibroblasts (FB, group 2) under the kidney capsule of immune-competent, streptozotocin induced, diabetic C57BL/6 recipients. Group 1 allografts survived significantly longer than group 2 (32.2 ± 12.2 versus 14.1 ± 3.3 days, P < 0.001) without administration of any systemic immunosuppressive agents. DSCC reduced T cell activation in the renal lymph node, prevented graft infiltrates, modulated inflammatory chemokine and cytokine profiles, and preserved better beta cell function in the islet allografts, but no systemic immunosuppression was observed. In summary, DSCC prolong islet allograft survival without systemic immunosuppression by local modulation of alloimmune responses, enhancing of beta cell survival, and promoting of graft revascularization. This novel finding demonstrates the capacity of easily accessible hair follicle cells to be used as local immunosuppression agents in islet transplantation.

  11. Tumour infiltrating lymphocytes correlate with improved survival in patients with esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. (United States)

    Jiang, Dongxian; Liu, Yalan; Wang, Hao; Wang, Haixing; Song, Qi; Sujie, Akesu; Huang, Jie; Xu, Yifan; Zeng, Haiying; Tan, Lijie; Hou, Yingyong; Xu, Chen


    We undertook a study of tumour infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in a large and relatively homogeneous group of patients with completely resected esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Hematoxylin and eosin-stained sections of 235 ESCC tumours were evaluated for density of TILs in intratumoural (iTIL) and stromal compartments (sTIL). Foxp3+, CD4+, and CD8+ T cells in tumoural and stromal areas were evaluated by immunohistochemistry. Of the 235 tumours, high sTIL (>10%), and iTIL (>10%) were observed in 101 (43.0%) and 98 (41.7%), respectively. The median follow-up period was 36.0 months (95% CI 29.929-42.071). Univariate analysis revealed that sTIL (>10%), iTIL (>20%), vessels involvement, lymph node metastasis, and clinical stage were significantly associated with postoperative outcome. In multivariate analysis, high sTIL (HR: 0.664, P = 0.019 for Disease free survival; HR: 0.608, P = 0.005 for Overall survival) was identified as independent better prognostic factor. Further analysis, sTIL was identified as independently prognostic factor in Stage III-IVa disease, which was not found in Stage I-II disease. Our study demonstrated that sTIL was associated with better ESCC patients' survival, especially in Stage III-IVa disease. Assessment of sTIL could be useful to discriminate biological behavior for ESCC patients.

  12. Antibody/doxycycline combined therapy for pulmonary ricinosis: Attenuation of inflammation improves survival of ricin-intoxicated mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoav Gal


    Full Text Available Ricin, a highly toxic plant-derived toxin, is considered a potential weapon in biological warfare due to its high availability and ease of preparation. Pulmonary exposure to ricin results in the generation of an acute edematous inflammation followed by respiratory insufficiency and death. Passive immunization with polyclonal anti-ricin antibodies conferred protection against pulmonary ricinosis, however, at clinically-relevant time points for treatment, survival rates were limited. In this study, intranasal instillation of a lethal dose of ricin to mice, served as a lung challenge model for the evaluation and comparison of different therapeutic modalities against pulmonary ricinosis. We show that treatment with doxycycline resulted in a significant reduction of pro-inflammatory cytokines, markers of oxidative stress and capillary permeability in the lungs of the mice. Moreover, survival rates of mice intoxicated with ricin and treated 24 h later with anti-ricin antibody were significantly improved by co-administration of doxycycline. In contrast, co-administration of the steroid drug dexamethasone with anti-ricin antibodies did not increase survival rates when administered at late hours after intoxication, however dexamethasone did exert a positive effect on survival when applied in conjunction with the doxycycline treatment. These studies strongly suggest that combined therapy, comprised of neutralizing anti-ricin antibodies and an appropriate anti-inflammatory agent, can promote high-level protection against pulmonary ricinosis at clinically-relevant time points post-exposure.

  13. Governing Ideals of Good Care: Quality improvement in mental health care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T. Broer (Tineke)


    textabstractIn the spring of 2008 I attended a conference on the use of coercion in mental health care. A healthcare worker who was also a “practicing patient”, as the program told us, held an impressive lecture that captured the audience from the moment the woman walked to the front. She referred t

  14. Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Rural Primary Care: Improving Care for Mental Health Following Bioterrorism (United States)

    Tsao, Jennie C. I.; Dobalian, Aram; Wiens, Brenda A.; Gylys, Julius A.; Evans, Garret D.


    Context: Recent bioterrorist attacks have highlighted the critical need for health care organizations to prepare for future threats. Yet, relatively little attention has been paid to the mental health needs of rural communities in the wake of such events. A critical aspect of bioterrorism is emphasis on generating fear and uncertainty, thereby…

  15. CARES: AACN's New Competencies and Recommendations for Educating Undergraduate Nursing Students to Improve Palliative Care. (United States)

    Ferrell, Betty; Malloy, Pam; Mazanec, Polly; Virani, Rose


    Nurses spend the most time of any health care professional caring for patients and families dealing with the challenges of serious illness. The demand for nursing expertise in palliative care is growing as more people are living with chronic, life-limiting illnesses. Nursing faculty must prepare future nurses to meet this demand. The new American Association of Colleges of Nursing Palliative Competencies And Recommendations for Educating undergraduate nursing Students document, released February 2016, identifies the 17 competencies that all undergraduate nursing students should achieve by the time of graduation. This historic document is a revision of the 1998 American Association of Colleges of Nursing Peaceful Death document and is now the guiding framework for undergraduate nursing education. In an effort to support nursing faculty and prepare nursing students to deliver quality palliative care, an innovative, interactive on-line undergraduate End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium (ELNEC) curriculum is under development and will be released in January 2017. This new curriculum will meet the competencies and recommendations for achieving those competencies outlined in the Competencies And Recommendations for Educating undergraduate nursing Students document.

  16. The basis for improving and reforming long-term care. Part 4: identifying meaningful improvement approaches (segment 2). (United States)

    Levenson, Steven A


    While many aspects of nursing home care have improved over time, numerous issues persist. Presently, a potpourri of approaches and a push to "fix" the problem have overshadowed efforts to correctly define the problems and identify their diverse causes. This fourth and final article in the series (divided between last month's issue and this one) recommends strategies to make sense of improvement and reform efforts. This month's concluding segment covers additional proposed approaches. Despite the challenges of the current environment, all of the proposed strategies could potentially be applied with little or no delay. Despite having brought vast increases in knowledge, the research effort may be losing its traction as a formidable force for meaningful change. It is necessary to rethink the questions being asked and the scope of answers being sought. A shift to overcoming implementation challenges is needed. In addition, it is essential to address issues of jurisdiction (the apparent "ownership" of assessment and decision making over patient problems or body parts) and reductionism (the excessive management of these issues and problems without proper context) that result in fragmented and problematic care. Issues of knowledge and skill also need to be addressed, with greater emphasis on key generic and technical competencies of staff and practitioners, in addition to factual knowledge. There is a need to rethink the approach to measuring performance and trying to improve quality of care and services. There are significant limits to trying to use quality measures to improve outcomes and performance. Ultimately, vast improvement is needed in applying care principles and practices, independent of regulatory sources. Reimbursement needs to be revamped so that it helps promote care that is consistent with human biology and other key concepts. Finally, improving long-term care will require a coordinated societal effort. All social institutions and health care settings need

  17. Volunteering for Clinical Trials Can Help Improve Health Care for Everyone (United States)

    ... of this page please turn Javascript on. Feature: Clinical Trials Volunteering for Clinical Trials Can Help Improve Health Care for Everyone Past ... healthy people to help," says Melanie Modlin about clinical trials. "We have a role to play in helping ...

  18. Surgical salvage improves overall survival for HPV-positive and HPV-negative recurrent locoregional and distant metastatic oropharyngeal cancer (United States)

    Guo, Theresa; Qualliotine, Jesse R.; Ha, Patrick K.; Califano, Joseph A.; Kim, Young; Saunders, John R.; Blanco, Ray; D'Souza, Gypsyamber; Zhang, Zhe; Chung, Christine H.; Kiess, Ana; Gourin, Christine G.; Koch, Wayne; Richmon, Jeremy D.; Agrawal, Nishant; Eisele, David W.; Fakhry, Carole


    Background Human papillomavirus (HPV) tumor status and surgical salvage are associated with improved prognosis for patients with recurrent oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OPSCC). Current data regarding types of surgery and the impact of surgery for distant metastatic disease are limited. Methods A retrospective analysis of patients with recurrent OPSCC from two institutions between 2000-2012 was performed. P16 immunohistochemistry and/or in situ hybridization, as clinically available, were used to determine HPV tumor status. Clinical characteristics, distribution of recurrence site and treatment modalities were compared by HPV tumor status. Overall survival was examined by Kaplan-Meier and Cox proportional hazards methods. Results The study included 108 patients with 65 locoregional and 43 distant metastatic first recurrences. The majority were HPV-positive (n=80). HPV-positive tumor status was associated with longer time to recurrence (p<0.01). Anatomic site distribution of recurrences did not differ by HPV tumor status. HPV-positive tumor status (adjusted HR [aHR] 0.23 (95%CI 0.09-0.58), p=0.002), longer time to recurrence (≥1 year; aHR 0.36 (0.18-0.74), p=0.006), and surgical salvage (aHR 0.26 (0.12-0.61), p=0.002) were independently associated with overall survival after recurrence. Surgical salvage was independently associated with improved overall survival compared to non-surgical treatment in both locoregional (aHR 0.15 (0.04-0.56), p=0.005) and distant metastatic recurrence (aHR 0.19 (0.05-0.75), p=0.018). Conclusions Surgical salvage is associated with improved overall survival for recurrent locoregional and distant metastatic OPSCC, independent of HPV tumor status. Further prospective data is needed to confirm the role of surgical salvage for distant metastases. PMID:25782027

  19. [The role and place of pathology services in ensuring and improving the quality of medical care: Organizational and legal aspects]. (United States)

    Timofeev, I V


    The paper considers the legal and organizational issues of the activity of pathology services in improving medical care. It shows the main (diagnostic and medico-organizational) areas of pathology work to improve the quality of medical care.

  20. Interdisciplinary diabetes care teams operating on the interface between primary and specialty care are associated with improved outcomes of care: findings from the Leuven Diabetes Project

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathieu Chantal


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a complex, progressive disease which requires a variety of quality improvement strategies. Limited information is available on the feasibility and effectiveness of interdisciplinary diabetes care teams (IDCT operating on the interface between primary and specialty care. A first study hypothesis was that the implementation of an IDCT is feasible in a health care setting with limited tradition in shared care. A second hypothesis was that patients who make use of an IDCT would have significantly better outcomes compared to non-users of the IDCT after an 18-month intervention period. A third hypothesis was that patients who used the IDCT in an Advanced quality Improvement Program (AQIP would have significantly better outcomes compared to users of a Usual Quality Improvement Program (UQIP. Methods This investigation comprised a two-arm cluster randomized trial conducted in a primary care setting in Belgium. Primary care physicians (PCPs, n = 120 and their patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (n = 2495 were included and subjects were randomly assigned to the intervention arms. The IDCT acted as a cornerstone to both the intervention arms, but the number, type and intensity of IDCT related interventions varied depending upon the intervention arm. Results Final registration included 67 PCPs and 1577 patients in the AQIP and 53 PCPs and 918 patients in the UQIP. 84% of the PCPs made use of the IDCT. The expected participation rate in patients (30% was not attained, with 12,5% of the patients using the IDCT. When comparing users and non-users of the IDCT (irrespective of the intervention arm and after 18 months of intervention the use of the IDCT was significantly associated with improvements in HbA1c, LDL-cholesterol, an increase in statins and anti-platelet therapy as well as the number of targets that were reached. When comparing users of the IDCT in the two intervention arms no significant differences

  1. Hydroxocobalamin and Epinephrine Both Improve Survival in a Swine Model of Cyanide-Induced Cardiac Arrest (United States)


    the American College of Cardiology , the European Resuscitation Council, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, the Institute of Critical Care...Borron SW, Stonerook M, Reid F. Efficacy of hydroxocobalamin for the treatment of acute cyanide poisoning in adult beagle dogs . Clin Toxicol (Phila

  2. Use of evidence based practices to improve survival without severe morbidity for very preterm infants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zeitlin, Jennifer; Manktelow, Bradley N; Piedvache, Aurelie


    OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the implementation of four high evidence practices for the care of very preterm infants to assess their use and impact in routine clinical practice and whether they constitute a driver for reducing mortality and neonatal morbidity. DESIGN: Prospective multinational populat...

  3. Crossing the quality chasm: lessons from health care quality improvement efforts in England


    Madhok, Rajan


    The second report from the US Institute of Medicine Crossing the Quality Chasm, highlighted the deficiencies in health care quality in the USA, analyzed the contributory factors, and proposed 13 recommendations for improvements. Clearly, the challenges are enormous. Can anything be learned from the experiences of other countries? This article describes the author's experiences of health care quality improvement efforts in the National Health Service in England and their implications for the U...

  4. A novel educational programme to improve knowledge regarding health care-associated infection and hand hygiene. (United States)

    Fitzpatrick, Maureen; Everett-Thomas, Ruth; Nevo, Igal; Shekhter, Ilya; Rosen, Lisa F; Scheinman, Stephen R; Arheart, Kristopher L; Birnbach, David J


    Lack of hand hygiene by health-care workers is the most significant cause of health care-associated infection. This programme was designed to make health-care workers want to wash their hands, to change their knowledge regarding hand hygiene and health care-associated infection, and influence practice. Improvement between pre- and post-test scores was statistically significant. Compliance is a multifactorial problem that involves knowledge and behaviour. Educational awareness and frequent reminders are critical to maintain high rates of hand hygiene compliance.

  5. Demand assessment and price-elasticity estimation of quality-improved primary health care in Palestine: a contribution from the contingent valuation method. (United States)

    Mataria, Awad; Luchini, Stéphane; Daoud, Yousef; Moatti, Jean-Paul


    This paper proposes a new methodology to assess demand and price-elasticity for health care, based on patients' stated willingness to pay (WTP) values for certain aspects of health care quality improvements. A conceptual analysis of how respondents consider contingent valuation (CV) questions allowed us to specify a probability density function of stated WTP values, and consequently, to model a demand function for quality-improved health care, using a parametric survival approach. The model was empirically estimated using a CV study intended to assess patients' values for improving the quality of primary health care (PHC) services in Palestine. A random sample of 499 individuals was interviewed following medical consultation in four PHC centers. Quality was assessed using a multi-attribute approach; and respondents valued seven specific quality improvements using a decomposed valuation scenario and a payment card elicitation technique. Our results suggest an inelastic demand at low user fees levels, and when the price-increase is accompanied with substantial quality-improvements. Nevertheless, demand becomes more and more elastic if user fees continue to rise. On the other hand, patients' reactions to price-increase turn out to depend on their level of income. Our results can be used to design successful health care financing strategies that include a consideration of patients' preferences and financial capacities.

  6. End-stage renal disease: a proving ground for quality improvement in health care. (United States)

    Rutherford, W E; Gibney, R


    This article chronicles the health care quality improvement efforts that relate to patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD). The emphasis is on quality improvement as a management system as opposed to the quality improvements that resulted from strictly technical dialysis-related issues. The government has exercised considerable oversight on the ESRD program because of its growth and cost. History has shown that quality assurance (QA) has had little effect on improving quality or decreasing cost. The philosophy, methods, and tools of continuous quality improvement (CQI) have been shown to work in health care. CQI is a management system that offers hope for higher quality affordable health care. Computer technology is at last sophisticated enough to permit the collection of large amounts of clinical data at the point of care. This will permit CQI methods and tools to be applied generally at reasonable costs. Physicians in general and nephrologists in particular are beginning to understand the managed care environment. They are beginning to understand the paradigm shift that is required to effect the changes necessary for physicians to assume their leadership role in health care. This article reviews the quality efforts of the past and present. It discusses the strengths and weaknesses of efforts to improve quality and lastly presents a vision for the future.

  7. Improved five year survival after combined radiotherapy-chemotherapy for Stage I-II non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Monfardini, S.; Banfi, A.; Bonadonna, G.; Rilke, F.; Milani, F.; Valagussa, P.; Lattuada, A.


    In order to improve the prognosis of patients with localized non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (NHL) who are treated with radiotherapy (RT), a prospective controlled study utilizing a combined modality approach was carried out in patients with pathologic Stage I-II NHL. After treatment with regional RT, patients in complete remission were randomized to receive either no further therapy or 6 cycles of cyclophosphamide, vincristine and prednisolone (CVP). At 5 years from completion of irradiation, the relapse-free survival was 46.3% after RT and 72.1% after RT plus CVP (P=0.005). The corresponding findings for the overall survival calculated from the beginning of irradiation were 55.8 and 82.8% respectively (P=0.03). The favorable effects of adjuvant chemotherapy on relapse-free survival were statistically significant only in the subgroup with diffuse histology. In patients who relapsed after RT alone, the salvage therapy failed to induce a high incidence of second durable remission. Adjuvant chemotherapy is indicated to improve the curve rate in pathologic stage I-II NHL with diffuse histology when regional RT is utilized.

  8. RGDS-fuctionalized alginates improve the survival rate of encapsulated embryonic stem cells during cryopreservation. (United States)

    Sambu, S; Xu, X; Schiffer, H A; Cui, Z F; Ye, H


    Cryopreservation of stem cells, especially embryonic stem cells, is problematic because of low post-thaw cell survival rates and spontaneous differentiation following recovery. In this investigation, mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) were encapsulated in arginine-glycine-aspartic acid-serine (RGDS)-coupled calcium alginates (1.2 percent, w/v), allowed to attach to the substratum and then cryopreserved in 10 percent (v/v) dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) solution at a slow cooling rate of 1 C per min. RGDS coupling to alginate was confirmed by Transmission Fourier Transform Infra-Red spectroscopy (T-FTIR) and quantified by using ninhydrin-Ultraviolet/Visible light (ninhydrin-UV/VIS) assay. Flow cytometry data showed that mESCs cryopreserved in RGDS-alginate beads had a higher expression of stem cell markers compared with cells cryopreserved in suspension or cells cryopreserved in unmodified alginates. Cell viability after thawing was assessed using trypan blue exclusion assay and monitored using Alamar blue assay for 6 hours. It was shown that post-thaw cell survival rate was significantly higher for cells encapsulated in RGDS-modified alginate (93 ± 2 percent, mean and standard error) than those in suspension (52 ± 2 percent) or in unmodified alginates (62 ± 3 percent). These results showed that cells encapsulated and attached to a substratum have better survival rate and stem cell marker expression 24 hours after cryopreservation than those in suspension. Encapsulation in RGDS-alginate was optimized for peptide concentration, cryoprotective agent loading time and cooling rate. The best result was obtained when using 12.5 mg peptide per g alginate, 30 minutes loading time and 1 C per min cooling rate.

  9. Kaizen: a process improvement model for the business of health care and perioperative nursing professionals. (United States)

    Tetteh, Hassan A


    Kaizen is a proven management technique that has a practical application for health care in the context of health care reform and the 2010 Institute of Medicine landmark report on the future of nursing. Compounded productivity is the unique benefit of kaizen, and its principles are change, efficiency, performance of key essential steps, and the elimination of waste through small and continuous process improvements. The kaizen model offers specific instruction for perioperative nurses to achieve process improvement in a five-step framework that includes teamwork, personal discipline, improved morale, quality circles, and suggestions for improvement.

  10. Implementing practice management strategies to improve patient care: the EPIC project. (United States)

    Attwell, David; Rogers-Warnock, Leslie; Nemis-White, Joanna


    Healthcare gaps, the difference between usual care and best care, are evident in Canada, particularly with respect to our aging, ailing population. Primary care practitioners are challenged to identify, prevent and close care gaps in their practice environment given the competing demands of informed, litigious patients with complex medical needs, ever-evolving scientific evidence with new treatment recommendations across many disciplines and an enhanced emphasis on quality and accountability in healthcare. Patient-centred health and disease management partnerships using measurement, feedback and communication of practice patterns and outcomes have been shown to narrow care gaps. Practice management strategies such as the use of patient registries and recall systems have also been used to help practitioners better understand, follow and proactively manage populations of patients in their practice. The Enhancing Practice to Improve Care project was initiated to determine the impact of a patient-centred health and disease management partnership using practice management strategies to improve patient care and outcomes for patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Forty-four general practices from four regions of British Columbia participated and, indeed, demonstrated that care and outcomes for patients with CKD could be improved via the implementation of practice management strategies in a patient-centred partnership measurement model of health and disease management.

  11. Quality improvement education to improve performance on ulcerative colitis quality measures and care processes aligned with National Quality Strategy priorities. (United States)

    Greene, Laurence; Moreo, Kathleen


    Studies on inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have reported suboptimal approaches to patient care. In the United States, the findings have motivated leading gastroenterology organizations to call for initiatives that support clinicians in aligning their practices with quality measures for IBD and priorities of the National Quality Strategy (NQS). We designed and implemented a quality improvement (QI) education program on ulcerative colitis in which patient charts were audited for 30 gastroenterologists before (n = 300 charts) and after (n = 290 charts) they participated in QI-focused educational activities. Charts were audited for nine measures, selected for their alignment with four NQS priorities: making care safer, ensuring patient engagement, promoting communication, and promoting effective treatment practices. Four of the measures, including guideline-directed vaccinations and assessments of disease type and activity, were part of the CMS Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The other five measures involved counseling patients on various topics in ulcerative colitis management, documentation of side effects, assessment of adherence status, and simplification of dosing. The gastroenterologists also completed baseline and post-education surveys designed to assess qualitative outcomes. One of the educational interventions was a private audit feedback session conducted for each gastroenterologist. The sessions were designed to support participants in identifying measures reflecting suboptimal care quality and developing action plans for improvement. In continuous improvement cycles, follow-up interventions included QI tools and educational monographs. Across the nine chart variables, post-education improvements ranged from 0% to 48%, with a mean improvement of 15.9%. Survey findings revealed improvements in self-reported understanding of quality measures and intentions to apply them to practice, and lower rates of perceived significant barriers to high

  12. Fasudil improves survival and promotes skeletal muscle development in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy


    Bowerman Melissa; Murray Lyndsay M; Boyer Justin G; Anderson Carrie L; Kothary Rashmi


    Abstract Background Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is the leading genetic cause of infant death. It is caused by mutations/deletions of the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene and is typified by the loss of spinal cord motor neurons, muscular atrophy, and in severe cases, death. The SMN protein is ubiquitously expressed and various cellular- and tissue-specific functions have been investigated to explain the specific motor neuron loss in SMA. We have previously shown that the RhoA/Rho kinase (...

  13. Bundled Payments for Care Improvement: Lessons Learned in the First Year. (United States)

    Althausen, Peter L; Mead, Lisa


    The Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI) initiative is the latest cost-saving program developed by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation. This model is intended to create a system for higher quality and more coordinated care at a lower cost to Medicare. It is currently an optional program for physician groups, hospitals and post-acute care providers to benefit financially from improved care models and cost containment measures. Under the initiative, organizations enter into payment arrangements that include financial and performance accountability for episodes of care. Under this initiative, there are certain fraud and abuse waivers in place that allow gainsharing among BPCI organizations and approved providers so long as certain requirements are met. Our practice entered this initiative for total joint arthroplasty episodes of care as well as the hip and femur fracture episode of care. The first year experience demonstrated that a significant learning curve is required. Keys for success include appropriate patient selection for elective surgery, implant pricing control, adherence to preoperative and postoperative protocols, diligent postcare care management, and appropriate choice of metrics to maximize gainsharing potential. Ultimately, the BPCI program has been a successful venture, saving our hospitals over $1.6 million in 2015. In the process, this provided an additional revenue stream for our physicians while decreasing the overall cost of care.

  14. Pilot program to improve self-management of patients with heart failure by redesigning care coordination. (United States)

    Shaw, Jessica D; O'Neal, Daniel J; Siddharthan, Kris; Neugaard, Britta I


    Objectives. We tested both an educational and a care coordination element of health care to examine if better disease-specific knowledge leads to successful self-management of heart failure (HF). Background. The high utilization of health care resources and poor patient outcomes associated with HF justify tests of change to improve self-management of HF. Methods. This prospective study tested two components of the Chronic Care Model (clinical information systems and self-management support) to improve outcomes in the self-management of HF among patients who received intensive education and care coordination during their acute care stay. A postdischarge follow-up phone call assessed their knowledge of HF self-management compared to usual care patients. Results. There were 20 patients each in the intervention and usual care groups. Intervention patients were more likely to have a scale at home, write down their weight, and practice new or different health behaviors. Conclusion. Patients receiving more intensive education knew more about their disease and were better able to self-manage their weight compared to patients receiving standard care.

  15. Making Meaningful Improvements to Direct Care Worker Training Through Informed Policy: Understanding How Care Setting Structure and Culture Matter. (United States)

    Kemeny, M Elizabeth; Mabry, J Beth


    Well-intentioned policy governing the training of direct care workers (DCWs) who serve older persons, in practice, may become merely a compliance issue for organizations rather than a meaningful way to improve quality of care. This study investigates the relationships between best practices in DCW training and the structure and culture of long term support service (LTSS) organizations. Using a mixed-methods approach to analyzing data from 328 licensed LTSS organizations in Pennsylvania, the findings suggest that public policy should address methods of training, not just content, and consider organizational variations in size, training evaluation practices, DCW integration, and DCW input into care planning. Effective training also incorporates support for organizations and supervisors as key aspects of DCWs' learning and working environment.

  16. Improving COPD Care in a Medically Underserved Primary Care Clinic: A Qualitative Study of Patient Perspectives. (United States)

    Glasser, Irene; Wang, Fei; Reardon, Jane; Vergara, Cunegundo D; Salvietti, Ralph; Acevedo, Myrtha; Santana, Blanca; Fortunato, Gil


    We conducted a focus group study in an urban hospital-based primary care teaching clinic serving an indigent and Hispanic (predominantly Puerto Rican) population in New England in order to learn how patients with Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (COPD) perceive their disease, how they experience their medical care, and the barriers they face managing their disease and following medical recommendations. The research team included medical doctors, nurses, a medical anthropologist, a clinical pharmacist, a hospital interpreter, and a systems analyst. Four focus groups were conducted in Spanish and English in April and May 2014. The demographic characteristics of the 25 focus group participants closely reflected the demographics of the total COPD clinic patients. The participants were predominantly female (72%) and Hispanic (72%) and had a median age of 63. The major themes expressed in the focus groups included: problems living with COPD; coping with complexities of comorbid illnesses; challenges of quitting smoking and maintaining cessation; dealing with second-hand smoke; beliefs and myths about quitting smoking; difficulty paying for and obtaining medications; positive experiences obtaining and managing medications; difficulties in using sleep machines at home; expressions of disappointment with the departure of their doctors; and overall satisfaction with the clinic health care providers. The study led to the creation of an action plan that addresses the concerns expressed by the focus study participants. The action plan is spearheaded by a designated bilingual and bicultural nurse and is now in operation.

  17. Slow and stepped re-warming after acute low temperature exposure do not improve survival of Drosophila melanogaster larvae. (United States)

    Sinclair, Brent J; Rajamohan, Arun


    We tested that hypothesis that slow re-warming rates would improve the ability of Drosophila melanogaster Meigen larvae to survive acute low temperature exposure. Four larval stages (1(st), 2(nd), 3(rd) instars and wandering stage 3(rd) instars) of four wild-type strains were exposed to -7 degrees C for periods of time expected to result in 90 % mortality. Larvae were then either directly transferred to their rearing temperature (21 degrees C), or returned to this temperature in a stepwise fashion (pausing at 0 and 15 degrees C) or by slow warming at 1 or 0.1 degrees C/min. We observed a reduced rapid cold-hardening effect and no general increase in survival of acute chilling in larvae re-warmed in a stepwise or slow fashion, and hypothesise that slow re-warming may result in accumulation of further chill injuries.

  18. Significant survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer in the periods 2001-2008 vs. 1992-2000

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nishimura Sumiko


    Full Text Available Abstract Background It is unclear whether individualized treatments based on biological factors have improved the prognosis of recurrent breast cancer. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the survival improvement of patients with recurrent breast cancer after the introduction of third generation aromatase inhibitors (AIs and trastuzumab. Methods A total of 407 patients who received first diagnosis of recurrent breast cancer and treatment at National Kyushu Cancer Center between 1992 and 2008 were retrospectively evaluated. As AIs and trastuzumab were approved for clinical use in Japan in 2001, the patients were divided into two time cohorts depending on whether the cancer recurred before or after 2001. Cohort A: 170 patients who were diagnosed between 1992 and 2000. Cohort B: 237 patients who were diagnosed between 2001 and 2008. Tumor characteristics, treatments, and outcome were compared. Results Fourteen percent of cohort A and 76% of cohort B received AIs and/or trastuzumab (P Conclusions The prognosis of patients with recurrent breast cancer was improved over time following the introduction of AIs and trastuzumab and the survival improvement was apparent in HR- and/or HER-2-positive tumors.

  19. Use of evidence based practices to improve survival without severe morbidity for very preterm infants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zeitlin, Jennifer; Manktelow, Bradley N; Piedvache, Aurelie;


    of death or severe morbidity, or both. We modelled associations using risk ratios, with propensity score weighting to account for potential confounding bias. Analyses were adjusted for clustering within delivery hospital. RESULTS: Only 58.3% (n=4275) of infants received all evidence based practices......OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the implementation of four high evidence practices for the care of very preterm infants to assess their use and impact in routine clinical practice and whether they constitute a driver for reducing mortality and neonatal morbidity. DESIGN: Prospective multinational...... population based observational study. SETTING: 19 regions from 11 European countries covering 850 000 annual births participating in the EPICE (Effective Perinatal Intensive Care in Europe for very preterm births) project. PARTICIPANTS: 7336 infants born between 24+0 and 31+6 weeks' gestation in 2011...

  20. A woman-led approach to improving postnatal care. (United States)

    Fryer-Croxall, Claire; Bailey, Elizabeth


    As a large NHS teaching trust we see 6,000 women a year who birth with us. Newly appointed as a modern matron, I noted that poor experience on our postnatal ward has always been a key issue in the complaints we receive and from the feedback that our women give to us. The ImPosE (improving postnatal experience) project was launched in December 2013. This brought together members of the multidisciplinary team who were committed to developing our postnatal ward and improving it for our women and their families. We used a quality management approach, putting 'customer' experience at the core, and implemented a varied package of changes as directed by feedback from service users.

  1. Better tests, better care: improved diagnostics for infectious diseases. (United States)

    Caliendo, Angela M; Gilbert, David N; Ginocchio, Christine C; Hanson, Kimberly E; May, Larissa; Quinn, Thomas C; Tenover, Fred C; Alland, David; Blaschke, Anne J; Bonomo, Robert A; Carroll, Karen C; Ferraro, Mary Jane; Hirschhorn, Lisa R; Joseph, W Patrick; Karchmer, Tobi; MacIntyre, Ann T; Reller, L Barth; Jackson, Audrey F


    In this IDSA policy paper, we review the current diagnostic landscape, including unmet needs and emerging technologies, and assess the challenges to the development and clinical integration of improved tests. To fulfill the promise of emerging diagnostics, IDSA presents recommendations that address a host of identified barriers. Achieving these goals will require the engagement and coordination of a number of stakeholders, including Congress, funding and regulatory bodies, public health agencies, the diagnostics industry, healthcare systems, professional societies, and individual clinicians.

  2. Prescription data improve the medication history in primary care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glintborg, Bente; Andersen, S K; Poulsen, H E


    Incomplete medication lists increase the risk of medication errors and adverse drug effects. In Denmark, dispensing data and pharmacy records are available directly online to treating physicians. We aimed (1) to describe if use of pharmacy records improved the medication history among patients...... consulting their general practitioner and (2) to characterise inconsistencies between the medication history reported by the patient and the general practitioner's recordings....

  3. Beneficial native bacteria improve survival and mycorrhization of desert truffle mycorrhizal plants in nursery conditions. (United States)

    Navarro-Ródenas, Alfonso; Berná, Luis Miguel; Lozano-Carrillo, Cecilia; Andrino, Alberto; Morte, Asunción


    Sixty-four native bacterial colonies were isolated from mycorrhizal roots of Helianthemum almeriense colonized by Terfezia claveryi, mycorrhizosphere soil, and peridium of T. claveryi to evaluate their effect on mycorrhizal plant production. Based on the phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rDNA partial sequence, 45 different strains from 17 genera were gathered. The largest genera were Pseudomonas (40.8 % of the isolated strains), Bacillus (12.2 % of isolated strains), and Varivorax (8.2 % of isolated strains). All the bacteria were characterized phenotypically and by their plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) traits (auxin and siderophore production, phosphate solubilization, and ACC deaminase activity). Only bacterial combinations with several PGPR traits or Pseudomonas sp. strain 5, which presents three different PGPR traits, had a positive effect on plant survival and growth. Particularly relevant were the bacterial treatments involving auxin release, which significantly increased the root-shoot ratio and mycorrhizal colonization. Moreover, Pseudomonas mandelii strain 29 was able to considerably increase mycorrhizal colonization but not plant growth, and could be considered as mycorrhiza-helper bacteria. Therefore, the mycorrhizal roots, mycorrhizosphere soil, and peridium of desert truffles are environments enriched in bacteria which may be used to increase the survival and mycorrhization in the desert truffle plant production system at a semi-industrial scale.

  4. Increased tumour ADC value during chemotherapy predicts improved survival in unresectable pancreatic cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nishiofuku, Hideyuki; Tanaka, Toshihiro; Kichikawa, Kimihiko [Nara Medical University, Department of Radiology and IVR Center, Kashihara-city, Nara (Japan); Marugami, Nagaaki [Nara Medical University, Department of Endoscopy and Ultrasound, Kashihara-city, Nara (Japan); Sho, Masayuki; Akahori, Takahiro; Nakajima, Yoshiyuki [Nara Medical University, Department of Surgery, Kashihara-city, Nara (Japan)


    To investigate whether changes to the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) of primary tumour in the early period after starting chemotherapy can predict progression-free survival (PFS) or overall survival (OS) in patients with unresectable pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Subjects comprised 43 patients with histologically confirmed unresectable pancreatic cancer treated with first-line chemotherapy. Minimum ADC values in primary tumour were measured using the selected area ADC (sADC), which excluded cystic and necrotic areas and vessels, and the whole tumour ADC (wADC), which included whole tumour components. Relative changes in ADC were calculated from baseline to 4 weeks after initiation of chemotherapy. Relationships between ADC and both PFS and OS were modelled by Cox proportional hazards regression. Median PFS and OS were 6.1 and 11.0 months, respectively. In multivariate analysis, sADC change was the strongest predictor of PFS (hazard ratio (HR), 4.5; 95 % confidence interval (CI), 1.7-11.9; p = 0.002). Multivariate Cox regression analysis for OS revealed sADC change and CRP as independent predictive markers, with sADC change as the strongest predictive biomarker (HR, 6.7; 95 % CI, 2.7-16.6; p = 0.001). Relative changes in sADC could provide a useful imaging biomarker to predict PFS and OS with chemotherapy for unresectable pancreatic adenocarcinoma. (orig.)

  5. Hormetic heat stress and HSF-1 induce autophagy to improve survival and proteostasis in C. elegans (United States)

    Kumsta, Caroline; Chang, Jessica T.; Schmalz, Jessica; Hansen, Malene


    Stress-response pathways have evolved to maintain cellular homeostasis and to ensure the survival of organisms under changing environmental conditions. Whereas severe stress is detrimental, mild stress can be beneficial for health and survival, known as hormesis. Although the universally conserved heat-shock response regulated by transcription factor HSF-1 has been implicated as an effector mechanism, the role and possible interplay with other cellular processes, such as autophagy, remains poorly understood. Here we show that autophagy is induced in multiple tissues of Caenorhabditis elegans following hormetic heat stress or HSF-1 overexpression. Autophagy-related genes are required for the thermoresistance and longevity of animals exposed to hormetic heat shock or HSF-1 overexpression. Hormetic heat shock also reduces the progressive accumulation of PolyQ aggregates in an autophagy-dependent manner. These findings demonstrate that autophagy contributes to stress resistance and hormesis, and reveal a requirement for autophagy in HSF-1-regulated functions in the heat-shock response, proteostasis and ageing. PMID:28198373

  6. Survival and longevity improvements at extreme ages: an interpretation assuming an ecological stress theory of aging. (United States)

    Parsons, Peter A


    The primary determinant of survival during aging is the energetic efficiency and metabolic stability required to counter the accumulated internal and external stresses of a lifetime. Hence, genetically stress-resistant individuals should accumulate with age; frailer, less robust, less energetically efficient and less metabolically stable individuals should succumb in parallel. This selection process implies the accumulation of energetically efficient stress-resistant individuals with age to the exclusion of all others. High additive genetic variability for survival is expected under extreme circumstances, however there is limited evidence close to the absolute extremes of life that diversity may fall. At this stage, only a few highly adaptive, oxidative-stress-resistant and presumably somewhat homozygous genotypes should remain. Therefore a fall in variability may occur in these outliers, when frailer individuals are unable to cope and are eliminated at extreme ages. This process could provide an explanation of mortality-rate declines in domesticated (laboratory) and free-living populations of the extremely old. That is, mortality-rate declines may be an expectation from a process of genetic sorting resulting from the accumulated responses to environmental stress over time. Application of an ecological stress theory of aging, which combines the external stresses to which organisms are exposed with internal stresses, appears to be the prerequisite for this conclusion.

  7. Does adding risk-trends to survival models improve in-hospital mortality predictions? A cohort study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Forster Alan J


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Clinicians informally assess changes in patients' status over time to prognosticate their outcomes. The incorporation of trends in patient status into regression models could improve their ability to predict outcomes. In this study, we used a unique approach to measure trends in patient hospital death risk and determined whether the incorporation of these trend measures into a survival model improved the accuracy of its risk predictions. Methods We included all adult inpatient hospitalizations between 1 April 2004 and 31 March 2009 at our institution. We used the daily mortality risk scores from an existing time-dependent survival model to create five trend indicators: absolute and relative percent change in the risk score from the previous day; absolute and relative percent change in the risk score from the start of the trend; and number of days with a trend in the risk score. In the derivation set, we determined which trend indicators were associated with time to death in hospital, independent of the existing covariates. In the validation set, we compared the predictive performance of the existing model with and without the trend indicators. Results Three trend indicators were independently associated with time to hospital mortality: the absolute change in the risk score from the previous day; the absolute change in the risk score from the start of the trend; and the number of consecutive days with a trend in the risk score. However, adding these trend indicators to the existing model resulted in only small improvements in model discrimination and calibration. Conclusions We produced several indicators of trend in patient risk that were significantly associated with time to hospital death independent of the model used to create them. In other survival models, our approach of incorporating risk trends could be explored to improve their performance without the collection of additional data.

  8. National healthcare information system in Croatian primary care: the foundation for improvement of quality and efficiency in patient care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darko Gvozdanovi_


    Full Text Available In order to improve the quality of patient care, while at the same time keeping up with the pace of increased needs of the population for healthcare services that directly impacts on the cost of care delivery processes, the Republic of Croatia, under the leadership of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, has formed a strategy and campaign for national public healthcare system reform. The strategy is very comprehensive and addresses all niches of care delivery processes; it is founded on the enterprise information systems that will aim to support end-to-end business processes in the healthcare domain. Two major requirements are in focus: (1 to provide efficient healthcare-related data management in support of decision-making processes; (2 to support a continuous process of healthcare resource spending optimisation. The first project is the Integrated Healthcare Information System (IHCIS on the primary care level; this encompasses the integration of all primary point-of-care facilities and subjects with the Croatian Institute for Health Insurance and Croatian National Institute of Public Health. In years to come, IHCIS will serve as the main integration platform for connecting all other stakeholders and levels of health care (that is, hospitals, pharmacies, laboratories into a single enterprise healthcare network. This article gives an overview of Croatian public healthcare system strategy aims and goals, and focuses on properties and characteristics of the primary care project implementation that started in 2003; it achieved a major milestone in early 2007 - the official grand opening of the project with 350 GPs already fully connected to the integrated healthcare information infrastructure based on the IHCIS solution.

  9. Interdisciplinary diabetes care teams operating on the interface between primary and specialty care are associated with improved outcomes of care: findings from the Leuven Diabetes Project.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borgermans, L.D.A.; Goderis, G.; Broeke, C. Van Den; Verbeke, G.; Carbonez, A.; Ivanova, A.; Mathieu, C.; Aertgeerts, B.; Heyrman, J.; Grol, R.P.T.M.


    BACKGROUND: Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a complex, progressive disease which requires a variety of quality improvement strategies. Limited information is available on the feasibility and effectiveness of interdisciplinary diabetes care teams (IDCT) operating on the interface between primary and spec

  10. Scotland's Knowledge Network: translating knowledge into action to improve quality of care. (United States)

    Wales, A; Graham, S; Rooney, K; Crawford, A


    The Knowledge Network ( is Scotland's online knowledge service for health and social care. It is designed to support practitioners to apply knowledge in frontline delivery of care, helping to translate knowledge into better health-care outcomes through safe, effective, person-centred care. The Knowledge Network helps to combine the worlds of evidence-based practice and quality improvement by providing access to knowledge about the effectiveness of clinical interventions ('know-what') and knowledge about how to implement this knowledge to support individual patients in working health-care environments ('know-how'). An 'evidence and guidance' search enables clinicians to quickly access quality-assured evidence and best practice, while point of care and mobile solutions provide knowledge in actionable formats to embed in clinical workflow. This research-based knowledge is complemented by social networking services and improvement tools which support the capture and exchange of knowledge from experience, facilitating practice change and systems improvement. In these cases, the Knowledge Network supports key components of the knowledge-to-action cycle--acquiring, creating, sharing and disseminating knowledge to improve performance and innovate. It provides a vehicle for implementing the recommendations of the national Knowledge into Action review, which outlines a new national approach to embedding knowledge in frontline practice and systems improvement.

  11. Adding Erlotinib to Chemoradiation Improves Overall Survival but Not Progression-Free Survival in Stage III Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Komaki, Ritsuko, E-mail: [Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Allen, Pamela K.; Wei, Xiong [Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Blumenschein, George R. [Department of Thoracic Head and Neck Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Tang, Ximing [Department of Translational Molecular Pathology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Lee, J. Jack [Department of Biostatatistics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Welsh, James W. [Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Wistuba, Ignacio I. [Department of Translational Molecular Pathology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Liu, Diane D. [Department of Biostatatistics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States); Hong, Waun Ki [Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas (United States)


    Purpose: To test, in a single-arm, prospective, phase 2 trial, whether adding the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib to concurrent chemoradiotherapy for previously untreated, locally advanced, inoperable non-small cell lung cancer would improve survival and disease control without increasing toxicity. Methods and Materials: Forty-eight patients with previously untreated non-small cell lung cancer received intensity modulated radiation therapy (63 Gy/35 fractions) on Monday through Friday, with chemotherapy (paclitaxel 45 mg/m², carboplatin area under the curve [AUC] = 2) on Mondays, for 7 weeks. All patients also received the EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib (150 mg orally 1/d) on Tuesday-Sunday for 7 weeks, followed by consolidation paclitaxel–carboplatin. The primary endpoint was time to progression; secondary endpoints were overall survival (OS), toxicity, response, and disease control and whether any endpoint differed by EGFR mutation status. Results: Of 46 patients evaluable for response, 40 were former or never-smokers, and 41 were evaluable for EGFR mutations (37 wild-type [WT] and 4 mutated [all adenocarcinoma]). Median time to progression was 14.0 months and did not differ by EGFR status. Toxicity was acceptable (no grade 5, 1 grade 4, 11 grade 3). Twelve patients (26%) had complete responses (10 WT, 2 mutated), 27 (59%) partial (21 WT, 2 mutated, 4 unknown), and 7 (15%) none (6 WT, 2 mutated, 1 unknown) (P=.610). At 37.0 months' follow-up (range, 3.6-76.5 months) for all patients, median OS time was 36.5 months, and 1-, 2-, and 5-year OS rates were 82.6%, 67.4%, and 35.9%, respectively; none differed by mutation status. Twelve patients had no progression, and 34 had local and/or distant failure. Eleven of 27 distant failures were in the brain (7 WT, 3 mutated, 1 unknown). Conclusions: Toxicity and OS were promising, but time to progression did not meet expectations. The prevalence of

  12. Follow-up care for breast cancer survivors: improving patient outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chopra I


    Full Text Available Ishveen Chopra,1 Avijeet Chopra2 1Department of Pharmacy Administration, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 2Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, USA Background: Appropriate follow-up care is important for improving health outcomes in breast cancer survivors (BCSs and requires determination of the optimum intensity of clinical examination and surveillance, assessment of models of follow-up care such as primary care-based follow-up, an understanding of the goals of follow-up care, and unique psychosocial aspects of care for these patients. The objective of this systematic review was to identify studies focusing on follow-up care in BCSs from the patient's and physician's perspective or from patterns of care and to integrate primary empirical evidence on the different aspects of follow-up care from these studies. Methods: A comprehensive literature review and evaluation was conducted for all relevant publications in English from January 1, 1990 to December 31, 2013 using electronic databases. Studies were included in the final review if they focused on BCS’s preferences and perceptions, physician's perceptions, patterns of care, and effectiveness of follow-up care. Results: A total of 47 studies assessing the different aspects of follow-up care were included in the review, with a majority of studies (n=13 evaluating the pattern of follow-up care in BCSs, followed by studies focusing on BCS's perceptions (n=9 and preferences (n=9. Most of the studies reported variations in recommended frequency, duration, and intensity of follow-up care as well as frequency of mammogram screening. In addition, variations were noted in patient preferences for type of health care provider (specialist versus non-specialist. Further, BCSs perceived a lack of psychosocial support and information for management of side effects. Conclusion: The studies reviewed, conducted in a range of settings, reflect variations in

  13. Towards improving care for children with diabetes in Kuwait. (United States)

    Shaltout, A A; Qabazard, M A; al Khawari, M; Bushnaq, R; Abdella, N A; Abdul Salam, R; Mughal, H


    Presents the results of a medical audit of the records of 199 children diagnosed as diabetic and admitted to Al-Amiri Hospital, Kuwait. Uses the measurement of glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1) to indicate the levels of control achieved. Finds that the degree of glycaemic control compares favourably with studies done in other hospitals, but unfavourably with specialized diabetic clinics. Proposes that glycaemic control could be improved by provision of the services of specialized support staff such as dietitian, educator, psychologist and health visitor.

  14. Cold stress improves the ability of Lactobacillus plantarum L67 to survive freezing. (United States)

    Song, Sooyeon; Bae, Dong-Won; Lim, Kwangsei; Griffiths, Mansel W; Oh, Sejong


    The stress resistance of bacteria is affected by the physiological status of the bacterial cell and environmental factors such as pH, salts and temperature. In this study, we report on the stress response of Lactobacillus plantarum L67 after four consecutive freeze-thaw cycles. The cold stress response of the cold-shock protein genes (cspC, cspL and cspP) and ATPase activities were then evaluated. The cold stress was adjusted to 5 °C when the bacteria were growing at the mid-exponential phase. A comparative proteomic analysis was performed with two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D SDS-PAGE) and a matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization-mass spectrometer. Only 56% of the L. plantarum L67 cells without prior exposure to cold stress survived after four consecutive freeze-thaw cycles. However, 78% of the L. plantarum L67 cells that were treated with cold stress at 5 °C for 6 h survived after freeze-thaw conditions. After applying cold stress to the culture for 6h, the cells were then stored for 60 days at 5 °C, 25 °C and 35 °C separately. The cold-stressed culture of L. plantarum L67 showed an 8% higher viability than the control culture. After applying cold stress for 6h, the transcript levels of two genes (cspP and cspL) were up-regulated 1.4 (cspP) and 1.2 (cspL) times compared to the control. However, cspC was not up-regulated. A proteomic analysis showed that the proteins increased after a reduction of the incubation temperature to 5 °C. The importance of the expression of 13 other relevant proteins was also determined through the study. The exposure of L. plantarum cells to low temperatures aids their ability to survive through subsequent freeze-thaw processes and lyophilization.

  15. Angiotensin AT2-receptor stimulation improves survival and neurological outcome after experimental stroke in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schwengel, Katja; Namsolleck, Pawel; Lucht, Kristin;


    of C21 on neurological outcome, infarct size and expression of BDNF or GAP-43 in AT2-KO mice. From these data, it can be concluded that AT2R stimulation attenuates early mortality and neurological deficits after experimental stroke through neuroprotective mechanisms in an AT2R-specific way. Key message......This study investigated the effect of post-stroke, direct AT2-receptor (AT2R) stimulation with the non-peptide AT2R-agonist compound 21 (C21) on infarct size, survival and neurological outcome after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) in mice and looked for potential underlying mechanisms. C57...... • AT2R stimulation after MCAO in mice reduces mortality and neurological deficits.• AT2R stimulation increases BDNF synthesis and protects neurons from apoptosis.• The AT2R-agonist C21 acts protectively when applied post-stroke and peripherally....

  16. Intracellular trehalose improves the survival of human red blood cells by freeze-drying

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HE Hui; LIU Baolin; HUA Zezhao; LI Chuan; WU Zhengzheng


    Freeze-drying of human red blood cells has a potential important application for blood transfusion.The aim of this study was to investigate the effects ofintracellular trehalose on the survival of red blood cells after freeze-drying and rehydration.Fresh red blood cells were incubated in trehalose solutions of various concentrations at 37℃ for 7 h following freeze-drying.Polyvinylpyrrolidone,Trehalose,sodium citrate,and human serum albumin were used as extracellular protective agents for the freeze-drying of red blood cells.The results indicated that the intracellular trehalose concentration was increased with increasing concentration of extracellular trehalose solution,and the maximum concen tration of intracellular trehalose reached 35 mmol/L.The viability of freeze-dried red blood cells increased with the increment of intracellular trehalose concentration.

  17. Quality in transitional care of the elderly: Key challenges and relevant improvement measures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianne Storm


    Full Text Available Introduction: Elderly people aged over 75 years with multifaceted care needs are often in need of hospital treatment. Transfer across care levels for this patient group increases the risk of adverse events. The aim of this paper is to establish knowledge of quality in transitional care of the elderly in two Norwegian hospital regions by identifying issues affecting the quality of transitional care and based on these issues suggest improvement measures.Methodology: Included in the study were elderly patients (75+ receiving health care in the municipality admitted to hospital emergency department or discharged to community health care with hip fracture or with a general medical diagnosis. Participant observations of admission and discharge transitions (n = 41 were carried out by two researchers.Results: Six main challenges with belonging descriptions have been identified: (1 next of kin (bridging providers, advocacy, support, information brokering, (2 patient characteristics (level of satisfaction, level of insecurity, complex clinical conditions, (3 health care personnel's competence (professional, system, awareness of others’ roles, (4 information exchange (oral, written, electronic, (5 context (stability, variability, change incentives, number of patient handovers and (6 patient assessment (complex clinical picture, patient description, clinical assessment.Conclusion: Related to the six main challenges, several measures have been suggested to improve quality in transitional care, e.g. information to and involvement of patients and next of kin, staff training, standardisation of routines and inter-organisational staff meetings.

  18. Improving Wait Times to Care for Individuals with Multimorbidities and Complex Conditions Using Value Stream Mapping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tara Sampalli


    Full Text Available Background Recognizing the significant impact of wait times for care for individuals with complex chronic conditions, we applied a LEAN methodology, namely – an adaptation of Value Stream Mapping (VSM to meet the needs of people with multiple chronic conditions and to improve wait times without additional resources or funding. Methods Over an 18-month time period, staff applied a patient-centric approach that included LEAN methodology of VSM to improve wait times to care. Our framework of evaluation was grounded in the needs and perspectives of patients and individuals waiting to receive care. Patient centric views were obtained through surveys such as Patient Assessment of Chronic Illness Care (PACIC and process engineering based questions. In addition, LEAN methodology, VSM was added to identify non-value added processes contributing to wait times. Results The care team successfully reduced wait times to 2 months in 2014 with no wait times for care anticipated in 2015. Increased patient engagement and satisfaction are also outcomes of this innovative initiative. In addition, successful transformations and implementation have resulted in resource efficiencies without increase in costs. Patients have shown significant improvements in functional health following Integrated Chronic Care Service (ICCS intervention. The methodology will be applied to other chronic disease management areas in Capital Health and the province. Conclusion Wait times to care in the management of multimoribidities and other complex conditions can add a significant burden not only on the affected individuals but also on the healthcare system. In this study, a novel and modified LEAN methodology has been applied to embed the voice of the patient in care delivery processes and to reduce wait times to care in the management of complex chronic conditions.

  19. Independent practice associations and physician-hospital organizations can improve care management for smaller practices. (United States)

    Casalino, Lawrence P; Wu, Frances M; Ryan, Andrew M; Copeland, Kennon; Rittenhouse, Diane R; Ramsay, Patricia P; Shortell, Stephen M


    Pay-for-performance, public reporting, and accountable care organization programs place pressures on physicians to use health information technology and organized care management processes to improve the care they provide. But physician practices that are not large may lack the resources and size to implement such processes. We used data from a unique national survey of 1,164 practices with fewer than twenty physicians to provide the first information available on the extent to which independent practice associations (IPAs) and physician-hospital organizations (PHOs) might make it possible for these smaller practices to share resources to improve care. Nearly a quarter of the practices participated in an IPA or a PHO that accounted for a significant proportion of their patients. On average, practices participating in these organizations provided nearly three times as many care management processes for patients with chronic conditions as nonparticipating practices did (10.4 versus 3.8). Half of these processes were provided only by IPAs or PHOs. These organizations may provide a way for small and medium-size practices to systematically improve care and participate in accountable care organizations.

  20. Hibernation-Based Therapy to Improve Survival of Severe Blood Loss (United States)


    lactated  Ringers’,  4M  BHB   with  either  10mM  Melatonin,  5%  DMSO  or  20mM  Melatonin,  5%  DMSO...Figure  4.    Melatonin  concentrations  in  animals  treated  with   lactated  Ringers’,  4M   BHB ( lactated Ringers’treatment).       9   Publications,  Abstracts,  and  Presentations:   • A  manuscript

  1. What are the effective ways to translate clinical leadership into health care quality improvement?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McSherry R


    Full Text Available Robert McSherry,1 Paddy Pearce2 1School of Health and Social Care, University of Teesside, Middlesbrough, 2PKP Consulting, Yarm, United Kingdom Abstract: The presence and/or absence of effective leaders in health care can have a stark consequence on the quality and outcomes of care. The delivery of safe, quality, compassionate health care is dependent on having effective clinical leaders at the frontline. In light of the Kirkup and Francis reports, this article explores some ways of translating clinical leadership into health care quality improvement. This is achieved by exploring what is clinical leadership and why and how this is important to health care quality improvement, clinical leadership, and a duty of candor, along with the importance clinical leadership plays in the provision of quality care improvement and outcomes. Clinical leaders are not predefined roles but emerge from the complex clinical setting by gaining an acquired expertise and from how they then internalize this to develop and facilitate sound relationships within a team. Clinical leaders are effective in facilitating innovation and change through improvement. This is achieved by recognizing, influencing, and empowering individuals through effective communication in order to share and learn from and with each other in practice. The challenge for health care organizations in regard to creating organizational cultures where a duty of candor exists is not to reinvent the wheel by turning something that is simple into something complex, which can become confusing to health care workers, patients, and the public. By focusing on the clinical leader's role and responsibilities we would argue they play a crucial and pivotal role in influencing, facilitating, supporting, and monitoring that this duty of candor happens in practice. This may be possible by highlighting where and how the duty of candor can be aligned within existing clinical governance frameworks. Keywords: governance


    Beverly Fu, D.; Bota, Daniela A.


    OBJECTIVE: To assess the effects of inpatient acute rehabilitation on overall function, quality of life and overall survival for glioma patients. DESIGN: A retrospective study of glioma patients treated at UCI Neuro-Oncology Program. PARTICIPANTS: We have identified 12 patients with glioma diagnosis who underwent inpatient acute rehabilitation program using our IRB approved neuro-oncology database. OUTCOME ASSESSMENT TOOLS: Functional status based upon Karnofsky performance scale (KPS), quality of life as assessed by Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy Brain (FACT-Br) and overall survival. RESULTS: We identified on our study 3 patients with glioblastoma, 7 patients with anaplastic gliomas, and 2 patients with low grade gliomas. All of them had radiation and chemotherapy, except 2 patients with low grade gliomas who had radiation treatment only. The age range is from 26 to 77 and the mean age is 49-year-old. All the patients who underwent the acute inpatient rehabilitation program at our institution, not only improved their KPS scale significantly, but also enhanced their social and emotional well-being. The median KPS improvement is 30 points from a 3-6 weeks stay. Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy Brain (FACT-Br) is obtained from 4 patients at this time (further information will be presented at SNO conference). The mean FACT-Br TOI is 60.8, and the total FACT0Br Score is 119.6. Survival data are still collected. CONCLUSIONS: The patients who underwent acute inpatient rehabilitation program, showed significant improvements in their functional status and quality of life. The observation from this pilot study warrants further research and demonstrates the acute inpatient rehabilitation may be beneficial to glioma patients with good physical functions and tolerance for 3 hours a day of physical, occupation and speech therapies.

  3. Chemically modified tetracycline (COL-3) improves survival if given 12 but not 24 hours after cecal ligation and puncture. (United States)

    Halter, Jeffrey M; Pavone, Lucio A; Steinberg, Jay M; Gatto, Louis A; DiRocco, Joseph; Landas, Steve; Nieman, Gary F


    Sepsis can result in excessive and maladaptive inflammation that is responsible for more than 215,00 deaths per year in the United State alone. Current strategies for reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with sepsis rely on treatment of the syndrome rather than prophylaxis. We have been investigating a modified tetracycline, COL-3, which can be given prophylactically to patients at high risk for developing sepsis. Our group has shown that COL-3 is very effect at preventing the sequelae of sepsis if given before or immediately after injury in both rat and porcine sepsis models. In this study, we wanted to determine the "treatment window" for COL-3 after injury at which it remains protective. Sepsis was induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). Rats were anesthetized and placed into five groups: CLP (n = 20) = CLP without COL-3, sham (n = 5) = surgery without CLP or COL-3, COL3@6h (n = 10) = COL-3 given by gavage 6 h after CLP, COL3@12h (n = 10) = COL-3 given by gavage 12 h after CLP, and COL3@24h (n = 20) = COL-3 given by gavage 24 h after CLP. COL-3 that was given at 6 and 12 h after CLP significantly improved survival as compared with the CLP and the CLP@24h groups. Improved survival was associated with a significant improvement in lung pathology assessed morphologically. These data suggest that COL-3 can be given up to 12 h after trauma and remain effective.

  4. Increased proliferation activity measured by immunoreactive Ki67 is associated with survival improvement in rectal/recto sigmoid cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Eeva Salminen; Salla Palmu; Tero Vahlberg; Peter J. Roberts; Karl-Owe S(o)derstr(o)m


    AIM: To assess the expression of Ki67 as prognosticator in rectal/recto sigmoid cancer.METHODS: Samples from 146 patients with rectal and recto sigmoid cancer were studied for expression of Ki67 and its prognostic significance in comparison with clinicopathological predictors of survival. Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissues from 6 (4.1%) patients with T1, 26 (17.8%) with T2, 94 (64.4%) with T3, and 20 (13.7%) with T4 tumors were studied. Ki67 expression was determined immunohistochemically. Samples were divided according to mean value into high (>40%) and low (≤40%) expression. Areas of extensive proliferation (>50%) were defined as 'hot spot' areas. RESULTS: Hot spot areas were present in samples regardless of histopathological grade. Lower TNM and Dukes stage and higher expression of Ki67 and presence of Ki67 hot spot areas in histopathological samples were associated with better survival, whereas no association was observed with histopathological grade (P = 0.78). In Cox multivariate regression analysis, significant prognostic factors were Dukes stage (P<0.001), presence of lymph node metastases (P = 0.015), age (P = 0.035) andpresence of Ki67 hot spot areas (P = 0.044). CONCLUSION: Proliferative activity as measured by Ki67 in rectal cancer is associated with survival improvement compared with patients with low Ki67. Areas of prognostically significant increased proliferation were found independently of histopathological tumor grade.

  5. SUM (Service Unit Management): An Organizational Approach To Improved Patient Care. (United States)

    Jelinek, Richard C.; And Others

    To evaluate the effectiveness of Service Unit Management (SUM) in reducing costs, improving quality of care, saving professional nursing time, increasing personnel satisfaction, and setting a stage for further improvements, a national questionnaire survey identified the characteristics of SUM units, and compared the performance of a total of 55…

  6. The Impact of Elderly Care Competence and Quality Improvement Programme in Four Swedish Municipalities (United States)

    Westerberg, Kristina; Hjelte, Jan


    During a number of years Swedish municipalities have work with improvement of competence and long-term quality in elderly care. The overall aim of the present study was to compare different learning activities (workplace improvement and/or courses), and to relate these activities to learning climate, learning strategies, and perception of care…

  7. Improving food and fluid intake for older adults living in long-term care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Keller, Heather; Beck, Anne Marie; Namasivayam, Ashwini


    Poor food and fluid intake and malnutrition are endemic among older adults in long-term care (LTC), yet feasible and sustainable interventions that target key determinants and improve person-centered outcomes remain elusive. Without a comprehensive study addressing a range of determinants...... for the development and testing of interventions to improve food and fluid intake of older adults living in LTC....

  8. Generic project definitions for improvement of health care delivery: A case-base approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Niemeijer, G.C.; Does, R.J.M.M.; de Mast, J.; Trip, A.; van den Heuvel, J.


    Background: The purpose of this article is to create actionable knowledge, making the definition of process improvement projects in health care delivery more effective. Methods: This study is a retrospective analysis of process improvement projects in hospitals, facilitating a case-based reasoning a

  9. Improving patient-centredness in partnership with female patients: a cluster RCT in fertility care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huppelschoten, A.G.; Nelen, W.L.D.M.; Westert, G.P.; Golde, R.J.T. van; Adang, E.M.M.; Kremer, J.A.M.


    QUESTION: What is the effect of a multifaceted intervention with participation of patients on improvement of patient-centredness in fertility care? SUMMARY ANSWER: A multifaceted intervention with participation of patients did not improve total patient-centredness scores provided by women in fertili

  10. Improved particle swarm optimization algorithm for android medical care IOT using modified parameters. (United States)

    Sung, Wen-Tsai; Chiang, Yen-Chun


    This study examines wireless sensor network with real-time remote identification using the Android study of things (HCIOT) platform in community healthcare. An improved particle swarm optimization (PSO) method is proposed to efficiently enhance physiological multi-sensors data fusion measurement precision in the Internet of Things (IOT) system. Improved PSO (IPSO) includes: inertia weight factor design, shrinkage factor adjustment to allow improved PSO algorithm data fusion performance. The Android platform is employed to build multi-physiological signal processing and timely medical care of things analysis. Wireless sensor network signal transmission and Internet links allow community or family members to have timely medical care network services.

  11. Study protocol: national research partnership to improve primary health care performance and outcomes for Indigenous peoples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McDermott Robyn


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Strengthening primary health care is critical to reducing health inequity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. The Audit and Best practice for Chronic Disease Extension (ABCDE project has facilitated the implementation of modern Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI approaches in Indigenous community health care centres across Australia. The project demonstrated improvements in health centre systems, delivery of primary care services and in patient intermediate outcomes. It has also highlighted substantial variation in quality of care. Through a partnership between academic researchers, service providers and policy makers, we are now implementing a study which aims to 1 explore the factors associated with variation in clinical performance; 2 examine specific strategies that have been effective in improving primary care clinical performance; and 3 work with health service staff, management and policy makers to enhance the effective implementation of successful strategies. Methods/Design The study will be conducted in Indigenous community health centres from at least six States/Territories (Northern Territory, Western Australia, New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland and Victoria over a five year period. A research hub will be established in each region to support collection and reporting of quantitative and qualitative clinical and health centre system performance data, to investigate factors affecting variation in quality of care and to facilitate effective translation of research evidence into policy and practice. The project is supported by a web-based information system, providing automated analysis and reporting of clinical care performance to health centre staff and management. Discussion By linking researchers directly to users of research (service providers, managers and policy makers, the partnership is well placed to generate new knowledge on effective strategies for improving the quality of primary

  12. Delivery of maternal health care in Indigenous primary care services: baseline data for an ongoing quality improvement initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kwedza Ru K


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (Indigenous populations have disproportionately high rates of adverse perinatal outcomes relative to other Australians. Poorer access to good quality maternal health care is a key driver of this disparity. The aim of this study was to describe patterns of delivery of maternity care and service gaps in primary care services in Australian Indigenous communities. Methods We undertook a cross-sectional baseline audit for a quality improvement intervention. Medical records of 535 women from 34 Indigenous community health centres in five regions (Top End of Northern Territory 13, Central Australia 2, Far West New South Wales 6, Western Australia 9, and North Queensland 4 were audited. The main outcome measures included: adherence to recommended protocols and procedures in the antenatal and postnatal periods including: clinical, laboratory and ultrasound investigations; screening for gestational diabetes and Group B Streptococcus; brief intervention/advice on health-related behaviours and risks; and follow up of identified health problems. Results The proportion of women presenting for their first antenatal visit in the first trimester ranged from 34% to 49% between regions; consequently, documentation of care early in pregnancy was poor. Overall, documentation of routine antenatal investigations and brief interventions/advice regarding health behaviours varied, and generally indicated that these services were underutilised. For example, 46% of known smokers received smoking cessation advice/counselling; 52% of all women received antenatal education and 51% had investigation for gestational diabetes. Overall, there was relatively good documentation of follow up of identified problems related to hypertension or diabetes, with over 70% of identified women being referred to a GP/Obstetrician. Conclusion Participating services had both strengths and weaknesses in the delivery of maternal

  13. Implantable defibrillators improve survival in patients with mildly symptomatic heart failure receiving cardiac resynchronization therapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gold, Michael R; Daubert, Jean-Claude; Abraham, William T;


    Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) decreases mortality, improves functional status, and induces reverse left ventricular remodeling in selected populations with heart failure. These benefits have been noted with both CRT-pacemakers as well as those devices with defibrillator backup (CRT...

  14. Improved late survival and disability after stroke with therapeutic anticoagulation for atrial fibrillation: a population study.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Hannon, Niamh


    Although therapeutic anticoagulation improves early (within 1 month) outcomes after ischemic stroke in hospital-admitted patients with atrial fibrillation, no information exists on late outcomes in unselected population-based studies, including patients with all stroke (ischemic and hemorrhagic).

  15. Activity cost analysis: a tool to cost medical services and improve quality of care. (United States)

    Udpa, S


    This paper suggests an activity-based cost (ABC) system as the appropriate cost accounting system to measure and control costs under the microstatistical episode of care (EOC) paradigm suggested by D. W. Emery (1999). ABC systems work well in such an environment because they focus on activities performed to provide services in the delivery of care. Thus, under an ABC system it is not only possible to accurately cost episodes of care but also to more effectively monitor and improve the quality of care. Under the ABC system, costs are first traced to activities and then traced from the activities to units of episodic care using cost drivers based on the consumption of activity resources.

  16. Getting the product right: how competition policy can improve health care markets. (United States)

    Sage, William M


    As hospital, physician, and health insurance markets consolidate and change in response to health care reform, some commentators have called for vigorous enforcement of the federal antitrust laws to prevent the acquisition and exercise of market power. In health care, however, stricter antitrust enforcement will benefit consumers only if it accounts for the competitive distortions caused by the sector's long history of government regulation. This article directs policy makers to a neglected dimension of health care competition that has been altered by regulation: the product. Competition may have failed to significantly lower costs, increase access, or improve quality in health care because we have been buying and selling the wrong things. Competition policy makers-meaning both antitrust enforcers and regulators-should force the health care industry to define and market products that can be assembled and warranted to consumers while keeping emerging sectors such as mHealth free from overregulation, wasteful subsidy, and appropriation by established insurer and provider interests.

  17. Integrating hospital administrative data to improve health care efficiency and outcomes: "the socrates story". (United States)

    Lawrence, Justin; Delaney, Conor P


    Evaluation of health care outcomes has become increasingly important as we strive to improve quality and efficiency while controlling cost. Many groups feel that analysis of large datasets will be useful in optimizing resource utilization; however, the ideal blend of clinical and administrative data points has not been developed. Hospitals and health care systems have several tools to measure cost and resource utilization, but the data are often housed in disparate systems that are not integrated and do not permit multisystem analysis. Systems Outcomes and Clinical Resources AdministraTive Efficiency Software (SOCRATES) is a novel data merging, warehousing, analysis, and reporting technology, which brings together disparate hospital administrative systems generating automated or customizable risk-adjusted reports. Used in combination with standardized enhanced care pathways, SOCRATES offers a mechanism to improve the quality and efficiency of care, with the ability to measure real-time changes in outcomes.

  18. Immunomodulatory and Antimicrobial Activity of Babassu Mesocarp Improves the Survival in Lethal Sepsis. (United States)

    Barroqueiro, Elizabeth S B; Prado, Dayanna S; Barcellos, Priscila S; Silva, Tonicley A; Pereira, Wanderson S; Silva, Lucilene A; Maciel, Márcia C G; Barroqueiro, Rodrigo B; Nascimento, Flávia R F; Gonçalves, Azizedite G; Guerra, Rosane N M


    Attalea speciosa syn Orbignya phalerata Mart. (babassu) has been used in the treatment of inflammatory and infectious diseases. Aim of the study. To investigate the antimicrobial and immunological activity of babassu mesocarp extract (EE). Material and Methods. The in vitro antimicrobial activity was evaluated by disk diffusion assay and by determination of the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) to Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The flavonoids and phenolic acids content were determined by chromatography. The in vivo assays were performed in Swiss mice submitted to sepsis by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). The mice received EE subcutaneously (125 or 250 mg/Kg), 6 hours after the CLP. The number of lymphoid cells was quantified and the cytokines production was determined by ELISA after 12 h. Results. EE was effective as antimicrobial to E. faecalis, S. aureus, and MRSA. EE is rich in phenolic acids, a class of compounds with antimicrobial and immunological activity. An increased survival can be observed in those groups, possibly due to a significant inhibition of TNF-α and IL-6. Conclusions. The EE showed specific antimicrobial activity in vitro and an important antiseptic effect in vivo possibly due to the antimicrobial and immunomodulatory activity.

  19. Immunomodulatory and Antimicrobial Activity of Babassu Mesocarp Improves the Survival in Lethal Sepsis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth S. B. Barroqueiro


    Full Text Available Attalea speciosa syn Orbignya phalerata Mart. (babassu has been used in the treatment of inflammatory and infectious diseases. Aim of the study. To investigate the antimicrobial and immunological activity of babassu mesocarp extract (EE. Material and Methods. The in vitro antimicrobial activity was evaluated by disk diffusion assay and by determination of the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC to Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA. The flavonoids and phenolic acids content were determined by chromatography. The in vivo assays were performed in Swiss mice submitted to sepsis by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP. The mice received EE subcutaneously (125 or 250 mg/Kg, 6 hours after the CLP. The number of lymphoid cells was quantified and the cytokines production was determined by ELISA after 12 h. Results. EE was effective as antimicrobial to E. faecalis, S. aureus, and MRSA. EE is rich in phenolic acids, a class of compounds with antimicrobial and immunological activity. An increased survival can be observed in those groups, possibly due to a significant inhibition of TNF-α and IL-6. Conclusions. The EE showed specific antimicrobial activity in vitro and an important antiseptic effect in vivo possibly due to the antimicrobial and immunomodulatory activity.

  20. Immunomodulatory and Antimicrobial Activity of Babassu Mesocarp Improves the Survival in Lethal Sepsis (United States)

    Prado, Dayanna S.; Barcellos, Priscila S.; Gonçalves, Azizedite G.


    Attalea speciosa syn Orbignya phalerata Mart. (babassu) has been used in the treatment of inflammatory and infectious diseases. Aim of the study. To investigate the antimicrobial and immunological activity of babassu mesocarp extract (EE). Material and Methods. The in vitro antimicrobial activity was evaluated by disk diffusion assay and by determination of the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) to Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The flavonoids and phenolic acids content were determined by chromatography. The in vivo assays were performed in Swiss mice submitted to sepsis by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). The mice received EE subcutaneously (125 or 250 mg/Kg), 6 hours after the CLP. The number of lymphoid cells was quantified and the cytokines production was determined by ELISA after 12 h. Results. EE was effective as antimicrobial to E. faecalis, S. aureus, and MRSA. EE is rich in phenolic acids, a class of compounds with antimicrobial and immunological activity. An increased survival can be observed in those groups, possibly due to a significant inhibition of TNF-α and IL-6. Conclusions. The EE showed specific antimicrobial activity in vitro and an important antiseptic effect in vivo possibly due to the antimicrobial and immunomodulatory activity. PMID:27630733

  1. An anti-apoptotic peptide improves survival in lethal total body irradiation. (United States)

    McDunn, Jonathan E; Muenzer, Jared T; Dunne, Benjamin; Zhou, Anthony; Yuan, Kevin; Hoekzema, Andrew; Hilliard, Carolyn; Chang, Katherine C; Davis, Christopher G; McDonough, Jacquelyn; Hunt, Clayton; Grigsby, Perry; Piwnica-Worms, David; Hotchkiss, Richard S


    Cell penetrating peptides (CPPs) have been used to deliver the anti-apoptotic Bcl-xL-derived BH4 peptide to prevent injury-induced apoptosis both in vitro and in vivo. Here we demonstrate that the nuclear localization sequence (NLS) from the SV40 large T antigen has favorable properties for BH4 domain delivery to lymphocytes compared to sequences based on the HIV-1 TAT sequence. While both TAT-BH4 and NLS-BH4 protected primary human mononuclear cells from radiation-induced apoptotic cell death, TAT-BH4 caused persistent membrane damage and even cell death at the highest concentrations tested (5-10 microM) and correlated with in vivo toxicity as intravenous administration of TAT-BH4 caused rapid death. The NLS-BH4 peptide has significantly attenuated toxicity compared to TAT-BH4 and we established a dosing regimen of NLS-BH4 that conferred a significant survival advantage in a post-exposure treatment model of LD90 total body irradiation.

  2. Increased androgen receptor expression in serous carcinoma of the ovary is associated with an improved survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nodin Björn


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Altered androgen hormone homeostasis and androgen receptor (AR activity have been implicated in ovarian carcinogenesis but the relationship between AR expression in ovarian cancer and clinical outcome remains unclear. Methods In this study, the prognostic impact of AR expression was investigated using immunohistochemistry in tissue microarrays from 154 incident cases of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC in the prospective, population-based cohorts Malmö Diet and Cancer Study and Malmö Preventive Project. A subset of corresponding fallopian tubes (n = 36 with no histopathological evidence of disease was also analysed. Results While abundantly expressed in the majority of fallopian tubes with more than 75% positive nuclei in 16/36 (44% cases, AR was absent in 108/154 (70% of EOC cases. AR expression was not related to prognosis in the entire cohort, but in the serous subtype (n = 90, AR positivity (> 10% positive nuclei was associated with a prolonged disease specific survival in univariate (HR= 0.49; 95% CI 0.25-0.96; p= 0.038 and multivariate (HR= 0.46; 95% CI 0.22-0.97; p= 0.042 analysis, adjusted for age, grade and clinical stage. Conclusions AR expression is considerably reduced in EOC as compared to fallopian tubes, and in EOC of the serous subtype, high AR expression is a favourable prognostic factor. These results indicate that assessment of AR expression might be of value for treatment stratification of EOC patients with serous ovarian carcinoma.

  3. Improving on-time performance in health care organizations: a case study. (United States)

    Lapierre, S D; Batson, C; McCaskey, S


    In this paper, we propose a strategy to build a measurement system that helps improve on-time performance in health care organizations. We analyze the measurement system for monitoring the performance of daily start times of first surgeries in a U.S. hospital. Although surgeons appear to be the main cause of delay, efforts to improve their on-time performance alone are not sufficient to improve on-time performance for first surgeries. Therefore, working on the main source of delay to improve performance, as the Pareto principle suggests, does not always work in the health care context. Rather, we found that ameliorating the hospital's overall on-time performance achieves the desired result of improving surgeons' performance through a snowball effect (a self-reinforcing effect) and, consequently, the on-time performance for first surgeries also improves.

  4. Interdisciplinary teamwork and the power of a quality improvement collaborative in tertiary neonatal intensive care units. (United States)

    Grover, Theresa R; Pallotto, Eugenia K; Brozanski, Beverly; Piazza, Anthony J; Chuo, John; Moran, Susan; McClead, Richard; Mingrone, Teresa; Morelli, Lorna; Smith, Joan R


    Significant gaps in healthcare quality and outcomes can be reduced via quality improvement collaboratives (QICs), which improve care by leveraging data and experience from multiple organizations.The Children's Hospital Neonatal Consortium Collaborative Initiatives for Quality Improvement team developed an infrastructure for neonatal QICs. We describe the structure and components of an effective multi-institutional neonatal QIC that implemented the "SLUG Bug" project designed to reduce central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs).The operational infrastructure of SLUG Bug involved 17 tertiary care neonatal intensive care units with a goal to reduce CLABSI in high-risk neonates. Clinical Practice Recommendations were produced, and the Institute of Healthcare Improvement Breakthrough Series provided the framework for the collaborative. Process measures studied the effectiveness of the collaborative structure.CLABSI rates decreased by 20% during a 12-month study period. Compliance bundle reporting exceeded 80%. A QIC score of 2.5 or more ("improvement") was achieved by 94% of centers and a score 4 or more ("significant improvement") was achieved by 35%.Frequent interactive project meetings, well-defined project metrics, continual shared learning opportunities, and individual team coaching were key QIC success components. Through a coordinated approach and committed leadership, QICs can effectively implement change and improve the care of neonates with complex diagnoses and rare diseases.

  5. Using mHealth to Improve Usage of Antenatal Care, Postnatal Care, and Immunization: A Systematic Review of the Literature. (United States)

    Watterson, Jessica L; Walsh, Julia; Madeka, Isheeta


    Mobile health (mHealth) technologies have been implemented in many low- and middle-income countries to address challenges in maternal and child health. Many of these technologies attempt to influence patients', caretakers', or health workers' behavior. The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review of the literature to determine what evidence exists for the effectiveness of mHealth tools to increase the coverage and use of antenatal care (ANC), postnatal care (PNC), and childhood immunizations through behavior change in low- and middle-income countries. The full text of 53 articles was reviewed and 10 articles were identified that met all inclusion criteria. The majority of studies used text or voice message reminders to influence patient behavior change (80%, n = 8) and most were conducted in African countries (80%, n = 8). All studies showed at least some evidence of effectiveness at changing behavior to improve antenatal care attendance, postnatal care attendance, or childhood immunization rates. However, many of the studies were observational and further rigorous evaluation of mHealth programs is needed in a broader variety of settings.

  6. Using mHealth to Improve Usage of Antenatal Care, Postnatal Care, and Immunization: A Systematic Review of the Literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica L. Watterson


    Full Text Available Mobile health (mHealth technologies have been implemented in many low- and middle-income countries to address challenges in maternal and child health. Many of these technologies attempt to influence patients’, caretakers’, or health workers’ behavior. The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review of the literature to determine what evidence exists for the effectiveness of mHealth tools to increase the coverage and use of antenatal care (ANC, postnatal care (PNC, and childhood immunizations through behavior change in low- and middle-income countries. The full text of 53 articles was reviewed and 10 articles were identified that met all inclusion criteria. The majority of studies used text or voice message reminders to influence patient behavior change (80%, n=8 and most were conducted in African countries (80%, n=8. All studies showed at least some evidence of effectiveness at changing behavior to improve antenatal care attendance, postnatal care attendance, or childhood immunization rates. However, many of the studies were observational and further rigorous evaluation of mHealth programs is needed in a broader variety of settings.

  7. Veterans’ Health Care: Improved Oversight of Community Care Physicians Credentials Needed (United States)


    Committees September 2016 GAO-16-795 United States Government Accountability Office United States Government Accountability Office...programs, PC3 and Choice, require physicians to hold certain credentials reflecting their qualifications. Congress included a provision in law for...improve veterans’ access to medical services, Congress enacted the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (Choice Act), which provided

  8. Improving cardiovascular outcomes among Aboriginal Australians: Lessons from research for primary care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra C Thompson


    Full Text Available Background: The Aboriginal people of Australia have much poorer health and social indicators and a substantial life expectancy gap compared to other Australians, with premature cardiovascular disease a major contributor to poorer health. This article draws on research undertaken to examine cardiovascular disparities and focuses on ways in which primary care practitioners can contribute to reducing cardiovascular disparities and improving Aboriginal health. Methods: The overall research utilised mixed methods and included data analysis, interviews and group processes which included Aboriginal people, service providers and policymakers. Workshop discussions to identify barriers and what works were recorded by notes and on whiteboards, then distilled and circulated to participants and other stakeholders to refine and validate information. Additional engagement occurred through circulation of draft material and further discussions. This report distils the lessons for primary care practitioners to improve outcomes through management that is attentive to the needs of Aboriginal people. Results: Aspects of primordial, primary and secondary prevention are identified, with practical strategies for intervention summarised. The premature onset and high incidence of Aboriginal cardiovascular disease make prevention imperative and require that primary care practitioners understand and work to address the social underpinnings of poor health. Doctors are well placed to reinforce the importance of healthy lifestyle at all visits to involve the family and to reduce barriers which impede early care seeking. Ensuring better information for Aboriginal patients and better integrated care for patients who frequently have complex needs and multi-morbidities will also improve care outcomes. Conclusion: Primary care practitioners have an important role in improving Aboriginal cardiovascular care outcomes. It is essential that they recognise the special needs of their

  9. Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals--twenty-five years of promoting improved health care services. (United States)

    McCleary, D


    A brief history of the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals (JCAH), as well as its structure, purpose and activities, is presented. The procedure for developing JCAH standards for health care facilities is discussed. Also presented are the survey and accreditation processes. It is concluded that as long as the United States values its tradition of voluntarism and believes in positive motivation, the JCAH will be an effective influence on improved health care services.

  10. Identifying priority actions for improving patient satisfaction with outpatient cancer care. (United States)

    Gesell, Sabina B; Gregory, Nancy


    In parallel to developing new cancer therapies, the healthcare community has the responsibility of creating positive treatment experiences for patients. Data from 5907 cancer outpatients treated at 23 hospitals across the United States were analyzed to identify the top priorities for service improvement in outpatient cancer treatment facilities. They included meeting patients' emotional needs, providing information to patients and family members, reducing waiting times, and providing convenience and coordinated care among physicians and other care providers.

  11. Evidence for handheld electronic medical records in improving care: a systematic review


    Straus Sharon E; Wu Robert C


    Abstract Background Handheld electronic medical records are expected to improve physician performance and patient care. To confirm this, we performed a systematic review of the evidence assessing the effects of handheld electronic medical records on clinical care. Methods To conduct the systematic review, we searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, and the Cochrane library from 1966 through September 2005. We included randomized controlled trials that evaluated effects on practitioner performance or...

  12. Soluble guanylate cyclase stimulation prevents fibrotic tissue remodeling and improves survival in salt-sensitive Dahl rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Geschka

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A direct pharmacological stimulation of soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC is an emerging therapeutic approach to the management of various cardiovascular disorders associated with endothelial dysfunction. Novel sGC stimulators, including riociguat (BAY 63-2521, have a dual mode of action: They sensitize sGC to endogenously produced nitric oxide (NO and also directly stimulate sGC independently of NO. Little is known about their effects on tissue remodeling and degeneration and survival in experimental malignant hypertension. METHODS AND RESULTS: Mortality, hemodynamics and biomarkers of tissue remodeling and degeneration were assessed in Dahl salt-sensitive rats maintained on a high salt diet and treated with riociguat (3 or 10 mg/kg/d for 14 weeks. Riociguat markedly attenuated systemic hypertension, improved systolic heart function and increased survival from 33% to 85%. Histological examination of the heart and kidneys revealed that riociguat significantly ameliorated fibrotic tissue remodeling and degeneration. Correspondingly, mRNA expression of the pro-fibrotic biomarkers osteopontin (OPN, tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1 and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1 in the myocardium and the renal cortex was attenuated by riociguat. In addition, riociguat reduced plasma and urinary levels of OPN, TIMP-1, and PAI-1. CONCLUSIONS: Stimulation of sGC by riociguat markedly improves survival and attenuates systemic hypertension and systolic dysfunction, as well as fibrotic tissue remodeling in the myocardium and the renal cortex in a rodent model of pressure and volume overload. These findings suggest a therapeutic potential of sGC stimulators in diseases associated with impaired cardiovascular and renal functions.

  13. Improving the care of older persons in Australian prisons using the Policy Delphi method. (United States)

    Patterson, Karen; Newman, Claire; Doona, Katherine


    There are currently no internationally recognised and approved processes relating to the care of older persons with dementia in prison. This research aimed to develop tools and procedures related to managing the care of, including the identification and assessment of, older persons with dementia who are imprisoned in New South Wales, Australia. A modified approach to the Policy Delphi method, using both surveys and facilitated discussion groups, enabled experts to come together to discuss improving the quality of care provision for older persons with dementia in prison and achieve research aims.

  14. Learning to Learn: towards a Relational and Transformational Model of Learning for Improved Integrated Care Delivery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Diamond


    Full Text Available Health and social care systems are implementing fundamental changes to organizational structures and work practices in an effort to achieve integrated care. While some integration initiatives have produced positive outcomes, many have not. We reframe the concept of integration as a learning process fueled by knowledge exchange across diverse professional and organizational communities. We thus focus on the cognitive and social dynamics of learning in complex adaptive systems, and on learning behaviours and conditions that foster collective learning and improved collaboration. We suggest that the capacity to learn how to learn shapes the extent to which diverse professional groups effectively exchange knowledge and self-organize for integrated care delivery.

  15. 205_WS: Improving the Delivery of Primary Care Through Risk Stratification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kinder, Karen; Kristensen, Troels; Abrams, Chad

    Objectives The aim of this workshop is to provide an insight into how information gained through applications of risk stratification in the primary health care sector, from integrated care networks to primary care clinics and finally at the individual clinician level can improve the delivery....... – Pharmaceutical Management. Method Each session will be comprised of presentations illustrating real world case-mix applications. The workshop would conclude with a plenary session which would summarize the take home messages of the three sessions. Other considerations The participants will experience first...

  16. A new tool to give hospitalists feedback to improve interprofessional teamwork and advance patient care. (United States)

    Chesluk, Benjamin J; Bernabeo, Elizabeth; Hess, Brian; Lynn, Lorna A; Reddy, Siddharta; Holmboe, Eric S


    Teamwork is a vital skill for health care professionals, but the fragmented systems within which they work frequently do not recognize or support good teamwork. The American Board of Internal Medicine has developed and is testing the Teamwork Effectiveness Assessment Module (TEAM), a tool for physicians to evaluate how they perform as part of an interprofessional patient care team. The assessment provides hospitalist physicians with feedback data drawn from their own work of caring for patients, in a way that is intended to support immediate, concrete change efforts to improve the quality of patient care. Our approach demonstrates the value of looking at teamwork in the real world of health care-that is, as it occurs in the actual contexts in which providers work together to care for patients. The assessment of individual physicians' teamwork competencies may play a role in the larger effort to bring disparate health professions together in a system that supports and rewards a team approach in hope of improving patient care.

  17. Improving Mental Health Access for Low-Income Children and Families in the Primary Care Setting. (United States)

    Hodgkinson, Stacy; Godoy, Leandra; Beers, Lee Savio; Lewin, Amy


    Poverty is a common experience for many children and families in the United States. Children low-income household has been linked to poor health and increased risk for mental health problems in both children and adults that can persist across the life span. Despite their high need for mental health services, children and families living in poverty are least likely to be connected with high-quality mental health care. Pediatric primary care providers are in a unique position to take a leading role in addressing disparities in access to mental health care, because many low-income families come to them first to address mental health concerns. In this report, we discuss the impact of poverty on mental health, barriers to care, and integrated behavioral health care models that show promise in improving access and outcomes for children and families residing in the contexts of poverty. We also offer practice recommendations, relevant to providers in the primary care setting, that can help improve access to mental health care in this population.

  18. Improved survival for elderly married glioblastoma patients. Better treatment delivery, less toxicity, and fewer disease complications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Putz, Florian; Goerig, Nicole; Knippen, Stefan; Gryc, Thomas; Semrau, Sabine; Lettmaier, Sebastian; Fietkau, Rainer [Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Department of Radiation Oncology, Erlangen (Germany); Putz, Tobias [University of Bamberg, Professorship of Demography, Bamberg (Germany); Eyuepoglu, Ilker; Roessler, Karl [Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Department of Neurosurgery, Erlangen (Germany)


    Marital status is a well-described prognostic factor in patients with gliomas but the observed survival difference is unexplained in the available population-based studies. A series of 57 elderly glioblastoma patients (≥70 years) were analyzed retrospectively. Patients received radiotherapy or chemoradiation with temozolomide. The prognostic significance of marital status was assessed. Disease complications, toxicity, and treatment delivery were evaluated in detail. Overall survival was significantly higher in married than in unmarried patients (median, 7.9 vs. 4.0 months; p = 0.006). The prognostic significance of marital status was preserved in the multivariate analysis (HR, 0.41; p = 0.011). Married patients could receive significantly higher daily temozolomide doses (mean, 53.7 mg/m{sup 2} vs. 33.1 mg/m{sup 2}; p = 0.020), were more likely to receive maintenance temozolomide (45.7 % vs. 11.8 %; p = 0.016), and had to be hospitalized less frequently during radiotherapy (55.0 % vs. 88.2 %; p = 0.016). Of the patients receiving temozolomide, married patients showed significantly lower rates of hematologic and liver toxicity. Most complications were infectious or neurologic in nature. Complications of any grade were more frequent in unmarried patients (58.8 % vs. 30.0 %; p = 0.041) with the incidence of grade 3-5 complications being particularly elevated (47.1 % vs. 15.0 %; p = 0.004). We found poorer treatment delivery as well as an unexpected severe increase in toxicity and disease complications in elderly unmarried glioblastoma patients. Marital status may be an important predictive factor for clinical decision-making and should be addressed in further studies. (orig.) [German] Fuer verheiratete Patienten mit malignen Gliomen ist ein verbessertes Gesamtueberleben gut beschrieben. Die zugrunde liegenden Mechanismen konnten bislang jedoch in den verfuegbaren bevoelkerungsbezogenen Arbeiten nicht erklaert werden. Eine Serie von 57 aelteren Patienten mit

  19. Collagen IV-modified scaffolds improve islet survival and function and reduce time to euglycemia. (United States)

    Yap, Woon Teck; Salvay, David M; Silliman, Michael A; Zhang, Xiaomin; Bannon, Zachary G; Kaufman, Dixon B; Lowe, William L; Shea, Lonnie D


    Islet transplantation on extracellular matrix (ECM) protein-modified biodegradable microporous poly(lactide-co-glycolide) scaffolds is a potential curative treatment for type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). Collagen IV-modified scaffolds, relative to control scaffolds, significantly decreased the time required to restore euglycemia from 17 to 3 days. We investigated the processes by which collagen IV-modified scaffolds enhanced islet function and mediated early restoration of euglycemia post-transplantation. We characterized the effect of collagen IV-modified scaffolds on islet survival, metabolism, and insulin secretion in vitro and early- and intermediate-term islet mass and vascular density post-transplantation and correlated these with early restoration of euglycemia in a syngeneic mouse model. Control scaffolds maintained native islet morphologies and architectures as well as collagen IV-modified scaffolds in vivo. The islet size and vascular density increased, while β-cell proliferation decreased from day 16 to 113 post-transplantation. Collagen IV-modified scaffolds promoted islet cell viability and decreased early-stage apoptosis in islet cells in vitro-phenomena that coincided with enhanced islet metabolic function and glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. These findings suggest that collagen IV-modified scaffolds promote the early restoration of euglycemia post-transplantation by enhancing islet metabolism and glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. These studies of ECM proteins, in particular collagen IV, and islet function provide key insights for the engineering of a microenvironment that would serve as a platform for enhancing islet transplantation as a viable clinical therapy for T1DM.

  20. Implementing a Pharmacist-Led Medication Management Pilot to Improve Care Transitions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Root, PharmD, MS


    Full Text Available Purpose: The purpose of this project was to design and pilot a pharmacist-led process to address medication management across the continuum of care within a large integrated health-system.Summary: A care transitions pilot took place within a health-system which included a 150-bed community hospital. The pilot process expanded the pharmacist’s medication management responsibilities to include providing discharge medication reconciliation, a patient-friendly discharge medication list, discharge medication education, and medication therapy management (MTM follow-up.Adult patients with a predicted diagnosis-related group (DRG of congestive heart failure or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease admitted to the medical-surgical and intensive care units who utilized a primary care provider within the health-system were included in the pilot. Forty patients met the inclusion criteria and thirty-four (85% received an intervention from an inpatient or MTM pharmacist. Within this group of patients, 88 drug therapy problems (2.6 per patient were identified and 75% of the drug therapy recommendations made by the pharmacist were accepted by the care provider. The 30-day all-cause readmission rates for the intervention and comparison groups were 30.5% and 35.9%, respectively. The number of patients receiving follow-up care varied with 10 (25% receiving MTM follow-up, 26 (65% completing a primary care visit after their first hospital discharge, and 23 (58% receiving a home care visit.Conclusion: Implementation of a pharmacist-led medication management pilot across the continuum of care resulted in an improvement in the quality of care transitions within the health-system through increased identification and resolution of drug therapy problems and MTM follow-up. The lessons learned from the implementation of this pilot will be used to further refine pharmacy care transitions programs across the health-system.

  1. Assessing the potential for improvement of primary care in 34 countries: a cross-sectional survey (United States)

    Boerma, Wienke GW; Murante, Anna M; Sixma, Herman JM; Schellevis, François G; Groenewegen, Peter P


    Abstract Objective To investigate patients’ perceptions of improvement potential in primary care in 34 countries. Methods We did a cross-sectional survey of 69 201 patients who had just visited general practitioners at primary-care facilities. Patients rated five features of person-focused primary care – accessibility/availability, continuity, comprehensiveness, patient involvement and doctor–patient communication. One tenth of the patients ranked the importance of each feature on a scale of one to four, and nine tenths of patients scored their experiences of care received. We calculated the potential for improvement by multiplying the proportion of negative patient experiences with the mean importance score in each country. Scores were divided into low, medium and high improvement potential. Pair-wise correlations were made between improvement scores and three dimensions of the structure of primary care – governance, economic conditions and workforce development. Findings In 26 countries, one or more features of primary care had medium or high improvement potentials. Comprehensiveness of care had medium to high improvement potential in 23 of 34 countries. In all countries, doctor–patient communication had low improvement potential. An overall stronger structure of primary care was correlated with a lower potential for improvement of continuity and comprehensiveness of care. In countries with stronger primary care governance patients perceived less potential to improve the continuity of care. Countries with better economic conditions for primary care had less potential for improvement of all features of person-focused care. Conclusion In countries with a stronger primary care structure, patients perceived that primary care had less potential for improvement. PMID:25883409

  2. Improving the quality of cancer care in America through health information technology. (United States)

    Feeley, Thomas W; Sledge, George W; Levit, Laura; Ganz, Patricia A


    A recent report from the Institute of Medicine titled Delivering High-Quality Cancer Care: Charting a New Course for a System in Crisis, identifies improvement in information technology (IT) as essential to improving the quality of cancer care in America. The report calls for implementation of a learning healthcare IT system: a system that supports patient-clinician interactions by providing patients and clinicians with the information and tools necessary to make well informed medical decisions and to support quality measurement and improvement. While some elements needed for a learning healthcare system are already in place for cancer, they are incompletely implemented, have functional deficiencies, and are not integrated in a way that creates a true learning healthcare system. To achieve the goal of a learning cancer care delivery system, clinicians, professional organizations, government, and the IT industry will have to partner, develop, and incentivize participation.

  3. Engaging primary care physicians in quality improvement: lessons from a payer-provider partnership. (United States)

    Lemak, Christy Harris; Cohen, Genna R; Erb, Natalie


    A health insurer in Michigan, through its Physician Group Incentive Program, engaged providers across the state in a collection of financially incentivized initiatives to transform primary care and improve quality. We investigated physicians' and other program stakeholders' perceptions of the program through semistructured interviews with more than 80 individuals. We found that activities across five areas contributed to successful provider engagement: (1) developing a vision of improving primary care, (2) deliberately fostering practice-practice partnerships, (3) using existing infrastructure, (4) leveraging resources and market share, and (5) managing program trade-offs. Our research highlights effective strategies for engaging primary care physicians in program design and implementation processes and creating learning communities to support quality improvement and practice change.

  4. Health care transition in Germany – standardization of procedures and improvement actions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pieper C


    Full Text Available Claudia Pieper, Izabela KolankowskaInstitute for Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology, University Hospital of Essen, Essen, North Rhine-Westphalia, GermanyAbstract: Previous studies have assessed an increase in the number of people in need and emphasized the advantages of structured discharge management and health care transition. Therefore, our study evaluated the status quo of transition in a major German city after standardization of procedures and implementation of standard forms. Satisfaction with handling of standard forms and improvement of procedures was evaluated. Additionally, patients who had recently been hospitalized were asked about the hospital discharge process. The results show that the recent efforts of standardization helped to improve interface management for health care workers and patients and showed further improvement options.Keywords: hospital discharge process, standard forms, long-term care, aftercare

  5. Organization Complexity and Primary Care Providers' Perceptions of Quality Improvement Culture Within the Veterans Health Administration. (United States)

    Korom-Djakovic, Danijela; Canamucio, Anne; Lempa, Michele; Yano, Elizabeth M; Long, Judith A


    This study examined how aspects of quality improvement (QI) culture changed during the introduction of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) patient-centered medical home initiative and how they were influenced by existing organizational factors, including VHA facility complexity and practice location. A voluntary survey, measuring primary care providers' (PCPs') perspectives on QI culture at their primary care clinics, was administered in 2010 and 2012. Participants were 320 PCPs from hospital- and community-based primary care practices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio. PCPs in community-based outpatient clinics reported an improvement in established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation from 2010 to 2012. However, their peers in hospital-based clinics did not report any significant improvements in QI culture. In both years, compared with high-complexity facilities, medium- and low-complexity facilities had better scores on the scales assessing established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation.

  6. Improved survival among patients with complicated type 2 diabetes in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Færch, Kristine; Carstensen, Bendix; Almdal, Thomas Peter;


    population decreased by 5.5% (95% confidence interval 2.9%-8.0%) per year in men and by 3.3% (0.0%-6.4%) per year in women. Among men but not women, this decline was significantly steeper than the decline in mortality in the Danish background population (men, -3.0% [-5.6% to -0.4%]; women, -1.4 [-4.6% to 2.0......CONTEXT: It is unclear to what extent recent advances in diabetes care have reduced the excess mortality in patients with complicated type 2 diabetes. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to estimate time trends in mortality among patients with complicated type 2 diabetes at the Steno Diabetes...... the national death register. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Poisson regression was used to model mortality rates by sex, age, age of diabetes onset, and calendar time. RESULTS: A total of 1341 deaths occurred (802 men and 539 women) during 32,913 person-years of follow-up. Total mortality rates in the diabetes...

  7. Improving Maternal Healthcare Access and Neonatal Survival through a Birthing Home Model in Rural Haiti

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Wickstrom


    Full Text Available High neonatal mortality in Haiti is sustained by limited access to essential maternity services, particularly for Haiti’s rural population. We investigated the feasibility of a rural birthing home model to provide basic prenatal, delivery, and neonatal services for women with uncomplicated pregnancies while simultaneously providing triage and transport of women with pregnancy related complications. The model included consideration of the local context, including women’s perceptions of barriers to healthcare access and available resources to implement change. Evaluation methods included the performance of a baseline community census and collection of pregnancy histories from 791 women living in a defined area of rural Haiti. These retrospective data were compared with pregnancy outcome for 668 women subsequently receiving services at the birthing home. Of 764 reported most recent pregnancies in the baseline survey, 663(87% occurred at home with no assistance from skilled health staff. Of 668 women followed after opening of the birthing home, 514 (77% subsequently gave birth at the birthing home, 94 (14% were referred to a regional hospital for delivery, and only 60 (9% delivered at home or on the way to the birthing home. Other measures of clinical volume and patient satisfaction also indicated positive changes in health care seeking. After introduction of the birthing home, fewer neonates died than predicted by historical information or national statistics. The present experience points out the feasibility of a rural birthing home model to increase access to essential maternity services.

  8. Community, service, and policy strategies to improve health care access in the changing urban environment. (United States)

    Andrulis, D P


    Urban communities continue to face formidable historic challenges to improving public health. However, reinvestment initiatives, changing demographics, and growth in urban areas are creating changes that offer new opportunities for improving health while requiring that health systems be adapted to residents' health needs. This commentary suggests that health care improvement in metropolitan areas will require setting local, state, and national agendas around 3 priorities. First, health care must reorient around powerful population dynamics, in particular, cultural diversity, growing numbers of elderly, those in welfare-workplace transition, and those unable to negotiate an increasingly complex health system. Second, communities and governments must assess the consequences of health professional shortages, safety net provider closures and conversions, and new marketplace pressures in terms of their effects on access to care for vulnerable urban populations; they must also weigh the potential value of emerging models for improving those populations' care. Finally, governments at all levels should use their influence through accreditation, standards, tobacco settlements, and other financing streams to educate and guide urban providers in directions that respond to urban communities' health care needs.

  9. Simvastatin Treatment Improves Survival in a Murine Model of Burn Sepsis



    Infection is the most common and most serious complication of a major burn injury related to burn size. Despite improvements in antimicrobial therapies sepsis still accounts for 50–60% of deaths in burn patients. Given the acute onset and unpredictable nature of sepsis, primary prevention was rarely attempted in its management. However, recent studies have demonstrated that statin treatment can decrease mortality is a murine model of sepsis by preservation of cardiac function and reversal of ...

  10. Long-term care and hospital collaboration. To survive in a reformed healthcare system, long-term care facilities can initiate hospital-based SNFs. (United States)

    Hume, S K


    Establishing relationships with hospitals may be critical for long-term care facilities facing financial pressures and uncertain futures. One option is to initiate collaborative efforts to develop hospital-based skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). Hospitals, under pressure to move patients to less intensive settings and to diversify, are naturally drawn to long-term care as a related business where they can make limited personnel and financial commitments and extend their continuum of care. Before approaching hospitals to initiate collaborative efforts, long-term care providers should understand how they think and what their strengths and weaknesses are. Long-term and acute care providers have many options for collaboration, including management contracts and joint ventures. In a traditional management contract, the long-term care provider furnishes the administrator and a few key staff in exchange for direct reimbursement for those staff plus a management fee. Another option is for the long-term care facility to provide all the staff for a fee or percentage of revenue. Joint venture options are to form a subsidiary corporation to renovate a floor of the hospital or to have the hospital buy a large percentage of the long-term care facility and share the profits. All these options have potential pitfalls, including differing financial expectations and the threat of unionization at the SNF. Nevertheless, for long-term care facilities struggling under reimbursement cutbacks and other pressures, the benefits may outweigh the risks.

  11. Ensuring quality cancer care: a follow-up review of the Institute of Medicine's 10 recommendations for improving the quality of cancer care in America. (United States)

    Spinks, Tracy; Albright, Heidi W; Feeley, Thomas W; Walters, Ron; Burke, Thomas W; Aloia, Thomas; Bruera, Eduardo; Buzdar, Aman; Foxhall, Lewis; Hui, David; Summers, Barbara; Rodriguez, Alma; Dubois, Raymond; Shine, Kenneth I


    Responding to growing concerns regarding the safety, quality, and efficacy of cancer care in the United States, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences commissioned a comprehensive review of cancer care delivery in the US health care system in the late 1990s. The National Cancer Policy Board (NCPB), a 20-member board with broad representation, performed this review. In its review, the NCPB focused on the state of cancer care delivery at that time, its shortcomings, and ways to measure and improve the quality of cancer care. The NCPB described an ideal cancer care system in which patients would have equitable access to coordinated, guideline-based care and novel therapies throughout the course of their disease. In 1999, the IOM published the results of this review in its influential report, Ensuring Quality Cancer Care. The report outlined 10 recommendations, which, when implemented, would: 1) improve the quality of cancer care, 2) increase the current understanding of quality cancer care, and 3) reduce or eliminate access barriers to quality cancer care. Despite the fervor generated by this report, there are lingering doubts regarding the safety and quality of cancer care in the United States today. Increased awareness of medical errors and barriers to quality care, coupled with escalating health care costs, has prompted national efforts to reform the health care system. These efforts by health care providers and policymakers should bridge the gap between the ideal state described in Ensuring Quality Cancer Care and the current state of cancer care in the United States.

  12. Sufficient virus-neutralizing antibody in the central nerve system improves the survival of rabid rats

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    Liao Pi-Hung


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Rabies is known to be lethal in human. Treatment with passive immunity for the rabies is effective only when the patients have not shown the central nerve system (CNS signs. The blood–brain barrier (BBB is a complex functional barrier that may compromise the therapeutic development in neurological diseases. The goal of this study is to determine the change of BBB integrity and to assess the therapeutic possibility of enhancing BBB permeability combined with passive immunity in the late stage of rabies virus infection. Methods The integrity of BBB permeability in rats was measured by quantitative ELISA for total IgG and albumin levels in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF and by exogenously applying Evans blue as a tracer. Western blotting of occludin and ZO-1, two tight junction proteins, was used to assess the molecular change of BBB structure. The breakdown of BBB with hypertonic arabinose, recombinant tumor necrosis factor-alpha (rTNF-γ, and focused ultrasound (FUS were used to compare the extent of BBB disruption with rabies virus infection. Specific humoral immunity was analyzed by immunofluorescent assay and rapid fluorescent focus inhibition test. Virus-neutralizing monoclonal antibody (mAb 8-10E was administered to rats with hypertonic breakdown of BBB as a passive immunotherapy to prevent the death from rabies. Results The BBB permeability was altered on day 7 post-infection. Increased BBB permeability induced by rabies virus infection was observed primarily in the cerebellum and spinal cord. Occludin was significantly decreased in both the cerebral cortex and cerebellum. The rabies virus-specific antibody was not strongly elicited even in the presence of clinical signs. Disruption of BBB had no direct association with the lethal outcome of rabies. Passive immunotherapy with virus-neutralizing mAb 8-10E with the hypertonic breakdown of BBB prolonged the survival of rabies virus-infected rats. Conclusions We demonstrated

  13. The effects of birth weight and maternal care on survival of juvenile Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus.

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    John M Maniscalco

    Full Text Available Steller sea lions were listed as endangered following a collapse of the western distinct population beginning in the late 1970s. Low juvenile survival has been implicated as a factor in the decline. I conducted a multistate mark-recapture analysis to estimate juvenile survival in an area of the western population where sea lions are showing signs of recovery. Survival for males and females was 80% between 3 weeks and 1 year of age. Approximately 20% of juveniles continued to be nursed by their mothers between ages 1 and 2 and 10% between ages 2 and 3. Survival for juveniles that suckled beyond 1 year was 88.2% and 89.9% to ages 2 and 3, respectively. In contrast, survival for individuals weaned by age 1 was 40.6% for males and 64.2% for females between ages 1 and 2. Birth mass positively influenced survival for juveniles weaned at age 1 but had little effect on individuals continuing to suckle. Cumulative survival to age 4 was double that estimated during the population decline in this region. Evidence suggests that western Steller sea lions utilize a somewhat different maternal strategy than those in the eastern distinct population. Western adult females generally invest more in their pups during the first year but wean offspring by age 1 more often. This results in better survival to age 1, but greater mortality between ages 1 and 3 compared to the eastern population. Different maternal strategies may reflect density dependent pressures of populations at opposite levels of abundance.

  14. Does using an asthma prompting form improve asthma care in a pediatric office? (United States)

    Pile, Debra


    An asthma exacerbation can be a life-threatening experience. This project tested the effectiveness of using a prompting form to improve childhood asthma care. Thirty randomly selected charts without a prompt form in a pediatric practice were compared for differences with thirty randomly selected charts with a completed prompting form. The number of medications reviewed (p=.001) and the frequency of refills written (p=.024) were significantly higher in the prompt group. Education was higher (p=.000) and triggers were more frequently discussed in the prompt group. The use of a prompting form facilitates discussion and improves preventive asthma care.

  15. Improving collaboration between primary care research networks using Access Grid technology

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    Zsolt Nagykaldi


    Full Text Available Access Grid (AG is an Internet2-driven, high performance audio_visual conferencing technology used worldwide by academic and government organisations to enhance communication, human interaction and group collaboration. AG technology is particularly promising for improving academic multi-centre research collaborations. This manuscript describes how the AG technology was utilised by the electronic Primary Care Research Network (ePCRN that is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH Roadmap initiative to improve primary care research and collaboration among practice- based research networks (PBRNs in the USA. It discusses the design, installation and use of AG implementations, potential future applications, barriers to adoption, and suggested solutions.

  16. Comparing and improving chronic illness primary care in Sweden and the USA. (United States)

    Øvretveit, John; Ramsay, Patricia; Shortell, Stephen M; Brommels, Mats


    Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to identify opportunities for improving primary care services for people with chronic illnesses by comparing how Sweden and US services use evidence-based practices (EBPs), including digital health technologies (DHTs). Design/methodology/approach - A national primary healthcare center (PHCC) heads surveys in 2012-2013 carried out in both countries in 2006. Findings - There are large variations between the two countries. The largest, regarding effective DHT use in primary care centers, were that few Swedish primary healthcare compared to US heads reported having reminders or prompts at the point of care (38 percent Sweden vs 84 percent USA), despite Sweden's established electronic medical records (EMR). Swedish heads also reported 30 percent fewer centers receiving laboratory results (67 percent Sweden vs 97 percent USA). Regarding following other EBPs, 70 percent of Swedish center heads reported their physicians had easy access to diabetic patient lists compared to 14 percent in the USA. Most Swedish PHCC heads (96 percent) said they offered same day appointment compared to 36 percent in equivalent US practices. Practical implications - There are opportunities for improvement based on significant differences in effective practices between the countries, which demonstrates to primary care leaders that their peers elsewhere potentially provide better care for people with chronic illnesses. Some improvements are under primary care center control and can be made quickly. There is evidence that people with chronic illnesses in these two countries are suffering unnecessarily owing to primary care staff failing to provide proven EBP, which would better meet patient needs. Public finance has been invested in DHT, which are not being used to their full potential. Originality/value - The study shows the gaps between current and potential proven effective EBPs for services to patients with chronic conditions. Findings suggest possible

  17. Ovarian cancer stem cells: Can targeted therapy lead to improved progression-free survival?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Christen; L; Walters; Haygood; Rebecca; C; Arend; J; Michael; Straughn; Donald; J; Buchsbaum


    Despite significant effort and research funds, epithelial ovarian cancer remains a very deadly disease. There are no effective screening methods that discover early stage disease; the majority of patients are diagnosed with advanced disease. Treatment modalities consist primarily of radical debulking surgery followed by taxane and platinum-based chemotherapy. Newer therapies including limited targeted agents and intraperitoneal delivery of chemotherapeutic drugs have improved disease-free intervals, but failed to yield longlasting cures in most patients. Chemotherapeutic resistance, particularly in the recurrent setting, plagues the disease. Targeting the pathways and mechanisms behind the development of chemoresistance in ovarian cancer could lead to significant improvement in patient outcomes. In many malignancies, including blood and other solid tumors, there is a subgroup of tumor cells, separate from the bulk population, called cancer stem cells(CSCs). These CSCs are thought to be the cause of metastasis, recurrence and resistance. However, todate, ovarian CSCs have been difficult to identify, isolate, and target. It is felt by many investigators that finding a putative ovarian CSC and a chemotherapeutic agent to target it could be the key to a cure for this deadly disease. This review will focus on recent advances in this arena and discuss some of the controversies surrounding the concept.

  18. Enhancing bile tolerance improves survival and persistence of Bifidobacterium and Lactococcus in the murine gastrointestinal tract

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    Hill Colin


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The majority of commensal gastrointestinal bacteria used as probiotics are highly adapted to the specialised environment of the large bowel. However, unlike pathogenic bacteria; they are often inadequately equipped to endure the physicochemical stresses of gastrointestinal (GI delivery in the host. Herein we outline a patho-biotechnology strategy to improve gastric delivery and host adaptation of a probiotic strain Bifidobacterium breve UCC2003 and the generally regarded as safe (GRAS organism Lactococcus lactis NZ9000. Results In vitro bile tolerance of both strains was significantly enhanced (P Listeria monocytogenes bile resistance mechanism BilE. Strains harbouring bilE were also recovered at significantly higher levels (P n = 5, following oral inoculation. Furthermore, a B. breve strain expressing bilE demonstrated increased efficacy relative to the wild-type strain in reducing oral L. monocytogenes infection in mice. Conclusion Collectively the data indicates that bile tolerance can be enhanced in Bifidobacterium and Lactococcus species through rational genetic manipulation and that this can significantly improve delivery to and colonisation of the GI tract.

  19. Improvement in autologous human fat transplant survival with SVF plus VEGF-PLA nano-sustained release microspheres. (United States)

    Li, Liqun; Pan, Shengsheng; Ni, Binting; Lin, Yuanshao


    Early neovascularization is important for autologous fat transplant survival. SVF cells are ideal seed cells. Both vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and SVF cells can promote neovascularization. However, the half-life (about 50 min) of VEGF is too short to sustain an adequate local concentration. We have investigated whether VEGF-polylactic acid (PLA) nano-sustained release microspheres plus SVF cells can improve neovascularization and survival of transplanted fat tissues. SVF cells were harvested and constructed VEGF-PLA nano-sustained release microspheres in vitro. Human fat tissues was mixed with SVF cells plus VEGF-PLA, SVF cells alone or Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium as the control. These three mixtures were injected into random sites in 18 nude mice. Two months later, the transplants were weighed and examined histologically; and capillaries were counted to quantify neovascularization. Hematoxylin-eosin (HE) and anti-VEGF stains were applied to reveal cell infiltration. The mean wet weight of fat in the SVF plus VEGF-PLA, SVF alone, and control transplants were 0.18 ± 0.013 g, 0.16 ± 0.015 g, and 0.071 ± 0.12 g, respectively; the differences between groups were statistically significant. More vessels were present in the SVF plus VEGF-PLA transplants than in the other two types. Transplants mixed with SVF cells also had an acceptable density of capillaries. Histological analysis revealed that both the SVF plus VEGF-PLA and SVF alone transplants, but not the control transplants, were composed of adipose tissue, and had less fat necrosis and less fibrosis than control specimens. SVF plus VEGF-PLA transplants had significantly greater capillary density and VEGF expression than the other two transplant groups. Thus transplanted fat tissue survival and quality can be enhanced by the addition of VEGF-PLA nano-sustained release microspheres plus SVF cells.

  20. Improved survival of mice bearing liver metastases of colon cancer cells treated with a combination of radioimmunotherapy and antiangiogenic therapy

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    Kinuya, Seigo; Yokoyama, Kunihiko; Bai, Jingming; Michigishi, Takatoshi; Tonami, Norihisa [Department of Biotracer Medicine, Kanazawa University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kanazawa, Ishikawa (Japan); Koshida, Kiyoshi [Department of Integrative Cancer Therapy and Urology, Kanazawa University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kanazawa, Ishikawa (Japan); Mori, Hirofumi; Shiba, Kazuhiro [Radioisotope Center, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Ishikawa (Japan); Watanabe, Naoto [Department of Radiology, Toyama Medical and Pharmaceutical University, Toyama (Japan); Shuke, Noriyuki [Department of Radiology, Asahikawa Medical College, Asahikawa, Hokkaido (Japan)


    We attempted to determine whether the combined regimen of radioimmunotherapy (RIT) and antiangiogenic therapy would favorably affect the survival of animals bearing liver metastases of colon cancer cells. Daily antiangiogenic therapy with 2-methoxyestradiol (2-ME), 75 mg/kg, was initiated at 3 days following intrasplenic cell inoculation of LS180 colon cancer cells. RIT with 7 MBq of {sup 131}I-A7, an IgG1 anti-colorectal monoclonal antibody, or {sup 131}I-HPMS-1, an irrelevant IgG1, was conducted at 7 days. Production of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) by LS180 cells was assessed in vitro. All nontreated mice died by 31 days following cell inoculation (n=5). Monotherapy comprising 2-ME treatment resulted in slightly better survival of mice (n=8) (P<0.05). {sup 131}I-A7 RIT displayed a marked therapeutic effect (n=8) (P<0.001); however, all animals eventually died due to metastases by 99 days. The combined regimen of {sup 131}I-A7 RIT and antiangiogenic therapy demonstrated a superior therapeutic effect in comparison to monotherapy consisting of either RIT or antiangiogenic therapy (n=10) (P<0.05); three mice survived the entire 160-day observation period. The combination of antiangiogenic therapy and {sup 131}I-HPMS-1 RIT failed to provide an appreciable benefit (n=5). Treatment with 2-ME decreased VEGF production by LS180 cells in a dose-dependent fashion. In conclusion, a combination regimen comprising RIT and antiangiogenic therapy initiated at the early stage of metastasis would be of great benefit in terms of improvement of the therapeutic efficacy with respect to liver metastases. (orig.)

  1. Extracellular administration of BCL2 protein reduces apoptosis and improves survival in a murine model of sepsis.

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    Akiko Iwata

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Severe sepsis and septic shock are major causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. In experimental sepsis there is prominent apoptosis of various cell types, and genetic manipulation of death and survival pathways has been shown to modulate organ injury and survival. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the effect of extracellular administration of two anti-apoptotic members of the BCL2 (B-cell lymphoma 2 family of intracellular regulators of cell death in a murine model of sepsis induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP. We show that intraperitoneal injection of picomole range doses of recombinant human (rh BCL2 or rhBCL2A1 protein markedly improved survival as assessed by surrogate markers of death. Treatment with rhBCL2 or rhBCL2A1 protein significantly reduced the number of apoptotic cells in the intestine and heart following CLP, and this was accompanied by increased expression of endogenous mouse BCL2 protein. Further, mice treated with rhBCL2A1 protein showed an increase in the total number of neutrophils in the peritoneum following CLP with reduced neutrophil apoptosis. Finally, although neither BCL2 nor BCL2A1 are a direct TLR2 ligand, TLR2-null mice were not protected by rhBCL2A1 protein, indicating that TLR2 signaling was required for the protective activity of extracellularly adminsitered BCL2A1 protein in vivo. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Treatment with rhBCL2A1 or rhBCL2 protein protects mice from sepsis by reducing apoptosis in multiple target tissues, demonstrating an unexpected, potent activity of extracellularly administered BCL2 BH4-domain proteins.

  2. Policy Statement--Using personal health records to improve the quality of health care for children. (United States)


    A personal health record (PHR) is a repository of information from multiple contributors (eg, patient, family, guardians, physicians, and other health care professionals) regarding the health of an individual. The development of electronic PHRs presents new opportunities and challenges to the practice of pediatrics. This policy statement provides recommendations for actions that pediatricians can take to support the development and use of PHRs for children. Pediatric health care professionals must become actively involved in developing and adopting PHRs and PHR systems. The American Academy of Pediatrics supports development of: educational programs for families and clinicians on effective and efficient use of PHRs; incentives to facilitate PHR use and maintenance; and child- and adolescent-friendly standards for PHR content, portability, security, and privacy. Properly designed PHR systems for pediatric care can empower patients. PHRs can improve access to health information, improve coordination of preventive health and health maintenance activities, and support emergency and disaster management activities. PHRs provide support for the medical home for all children, including those with special health care needs and those in foster care. PHRs can also provide information to serve as the basis for pediatric quality improvement efforts. For PHRs to be adopted sufficiently to realize these benefits, we must determine how best to support their development and adoption. Privacy and security issues, especially with regard to children and adolescents, must be addressed.

  3. Rapid Process Optimization: A Novel Process Improvement Methodology to Innovate Health Care Delivery. (United States)

    Wiler, Jennifer L; Bookman, Kelly; Birznieks, Derek B; Leeret, Robert; Koehler, April; Planck, Shauna; Zane, Richard


    Health care systems have utilized various process redesign methodologies to improve care delivery. This article describes the creation of a novel process improvement methodology, Rapid Process Optimization (RPO). This system was used to redesign emergency care delivery within a large academic health care system, which resulted in a decrease: (1) door-to-physician time (Department A: 54 minutes pre vs 12 minutes 1 year post; Department B: 20 minutes pre vs 8 minutes 3 months post), (2) overall length of stay (Department A: 228 vs 184; Department B: 202 vs 192), (3) discharge length of stay (Department A: 216 vs 140; Department B: 179 vs 169), and (4) left without being seen rates (Department A: 5.5% vs 0.0%; Department B: 4.1% vs 0.5%) despite a 47% increased census at Department A (34 391 vs 50 691) and a 4% increase at Department B (8404 vs 8753). The novel RPO process improvement methodology can inform and guide successful care redesign.

  4. Technology-based self-care methods of improving antiretroviral adherence: a systematic review.

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    Parya Saberi

    Full Text Available As HIV infection has shifted to a chronic condition, self-care practices have emerged as an important topic for HIV-positive individuals in maintaining an optimal level of health. Self-care refers to activities that patients undertake to maintain and improve health, such as strategies to achieve and maintain high levels of antiretroviral adherence.Technology-based methods are increasingly used to enhance antiretroviral adherence; therefore, we systematically reviewed the literature to examine technology-based self-care methods that HIV-positive individuals utilize to improve adherence. Seven electronic databases were searched from 1/1/1980 through 12/31/2010. We included quantitative and qualitative studies. Among quantitative studies, the primary outcomes included ARV adherence, viral load, and CD4+ cell count and secondary outcomes consisted of quality of life, adverse effects, and feasibility/acceptability data. For qualitative/descriptive studies, interview themes, reports of use, and perceptions of use were summarized. Thirty-six publications were included (24 quantitative and 12 qualitative/descriptive. Studies with exclusive utilization of medication reminder devices demonstrated less evidence of enhancing adherence in comparison to multi-component methods.This systematic review offers support for self-care technology-based approaches that may result in improved antiretroviral adherence. There was a clear pattern of results that favored individually-tailored, multi-function technologies, which allowed for periodic communication with health care providers rather than sole reliance on electronic reminder devices.

  5. Effects of being uninsured or underinsured and living in extremely poor neighborhoods on colon cancer care and survival in California: historical cohort analysis, 1996—2011

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    Gorey Kevin M


    Full Text Available Abstract Background We examined the mediating effects of health insurance on poverty-colon cancer care and survival relationships and the moderating effects of poverty on health insurance-colon cancer care and survival relationships among women and men in California. Methods We analyzed registry data for 3,291 women and 3,009 men diagnosed with colon cancer between 1996 and 2000 and followed until 2011 on lymph node investigation, stage at diagnosis, surgery, chemotherapy, wait times and survival. We obtained socioeconomic data for individual residences from the 2000 census to categorize the following neighborhoods: high poverty (30% or more poor, middle poverty (5-29% poor and low poverty (less than 5% poor. Primary health insurers were Medicaid, Medicare, private or none. Results Evidence of mediation was observed for women, but not for men. For women, the apparent effect of poverty disappeared in the presence of payer, and the effects of all forms of health insurance seemed strengthened. All were advantaged on 6-year survival compared to the uninsured: Medicaid (RR = 1.83, Medicare (RR = 1.92 and private (RR = 1.83. Evidence of moderation was also only observed for women. The effects of all forms of health insurance were stronger for women in low poverty neighborhoods: Medicaid (RR = 2.90, Medicare (RR = 2.91 and private (RR = 2.60. For men, only main effects of poverty and payers were observed, the advantaging effect of private insurance being largest. Across colon cancer care processes, Medicare seemed most instrumental for women, private payers for men. Conclusions Health insurance substantially mediates the quality of colon cancer care and poverty seems to make the effects of being uninsured or underinsured even worse, especially among women in the United States. These findings are consistent with the theory that more facilitative social and economic capital is available in more affluent neighborhoods, where women

  6. Attitudes toward nurse practitioner-led chronic disease management to improve outpatient quality of care. (United States)

    Sciamanna, Christopher N; Alvarez, Kristy; Miller, Judith; Gary, Tiffany; Bowen, Mary


    To understand the acceptability for a model of chronic disease management, in which primary care patients see nurse practitioners for structured visits using an evidence-based encounter form, the authors sent a mailed survey to primary care physicians and nurse practitioners. A total of 212 subjects completed the survey, for a total response rate of 53% (physicians, 44%; nurse practitioners, 61%). Most physicians (79.5%) reported that nurse practitioners saw patients in their practice. Most physicians (80.0%) and nurse practitioners (95.7%) believed that the proposed model of care would improve the control of chronic illnesses. In addition, most physicians (73.8%) and nurse practitioners (87.6%) believed that the model of care would be of interest to similar providers. Overall, the high level of support for the model and the presence of nurse practitioners in most physician offices suggests that future studies are warranted to understand how best to implement this.

  7. Practice improvement, part II: collaborative practice and team-based care. (United States)

    Roett, Michelle A; Coleman, Mary Thoesen


    The Institute of Medicine recommends interprofessional teams to address patients' complex needs. Team care should be structured in a way that uses the highest training levels of its members. Team communication is enhanced through regular meetings (eg, team huddles), and office efficiency is improved through identifying and solving underlying system-level issues (ie, second-order problem solving). Inclusive leadership principles are used to strengthen team practices and meet chronic care model goals. Setting clear goals with measurable outcomes, creating clinical and administrative systems, establishing a clear division of labor among team members who have occupational diversity, and providing ongoing training all facilitate team building. Increasing opportunities for team members to work together, such as with group visits, and providing interprofessional education are ways to encourage adoption of interprofessional practice. Reimbursement for team care includes per member per month payments for such services as care management, pay-for-performance benchmark payments, and payment for non-face-to-face services.

  8. The Nuka System of Care: improving health through ownership and relationships

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    Katherine Gottlieb


    Full Text Available Southcentral Foundation’s Nuka System of Care, based in Anchorage, Alaska, is a result of a customer-driven overhaul of what was previously a bureaucratic system centrally controlled by the Indian Health Service. Alaska Native people are in control as the “customer-owners” of this health care system. The vision and mission focus on physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness and working together as a Native Community. Coupled with operational principles based on relationships, core concepts and key points, this framework has fostered an environment for creativity, innovation and continuous quality improvement. Alaska Native people have received national and international recognition for their work and have set high standards for performance excellence, community engagement, and overall impact on population health. In this article, the health care transformation led by Alaska Native people is described and the benefits and results of customer ownership and the relationship-based Nuka System of Care are discussed.

  9. Adjuvant 5FU plus levamisole in colonic or rectal cancer: improved survival in stage II and III. (United States)

    Taal, B G; Van Tinteren, H; Zoetmulder, F A


    Based on the first favourable results of adjuvant therapy of 5FU plus levamisole in Dukes C colonic cancer in 1990, we conducted a prospective trial. 1029 patients were randomised to receive one year 5FU plus levamisole or no further treatment following curative surgery for stage II or III colon (n = 730) or rectal cancer (n = 299). 45% were in stage II and 55% in stage III. With a median follow-up of 4 years and 9 months a significant reduction in odds of death (25%, SD 9%, P = 0.007) was observed for those with adjuvant treatment (65% at 5 year) compared to the observation group (55%). Improved relative survival was present in stage III (56% vs 44%), and in stage II patients (78% vs 70%). In rectal cancer a non-significant difference in disease-free or overall survival was observed. Distant metastases developed in 76%, while local recurrence alone occurred in 14%. An early start of adjuvant treatment (5FU plus levamisole was 69%. Severe toxicity did not occur. In conclusion, one year 5FU plus levamisole was of benefit in stage II and III colonic cancer; in rectal cancer a significant positive effect could not be demonstrated.

  10. Inoculation of somatic embryos of sweet potato with an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus improves embryo survival and plantlet formation. (United States)

    Bressan, W; de Carvalho, C H; Sylvia, D M


    Responses of somatic embryos of sweet potato (Ipomoea batata (L.) Poir., cv. White Star) at different developmental stages to in vitro inoculation with Glomus etunicatum (Becker and Gerdemann) (isolate INVAM FL329) were evaluated. Somatic embryos were grown in glass tubes containing sterilized vermiculite and sand. A layer of natrosol plus White's medium was used as a carrier for arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal spores. Survival of embryos inoculated with AM fungi was significantly (P < 0.05) greater than that of noninoculated embryos at the rooted-cotyledonary-torpedo and rooted-elongated-torpedo developmental stages. Mycorrhizae significantly (P < 0.05) increased plantlet formation only when inoculation occurred at the rooted-elongated-torpedo developmental stage. The growth stage at which the embryos were inserted into the glass tubes exerted a significant influence upon plantlet formation, and plantlet formation was further enhanced by inoculation with G. etunicatum. Plantlet formation was greatest at the rooted-elongated-torpedo stage. These results demonstrate that inoculation of somatic embryos with AM fungi improves embryo survival and plantlet formation, and could enhance use of somatic embryos as synthetic seeds.

  11. Reduction in plasma cell proliferation after initial therapy in newly diagnosed multiple myeloma measures treatment response and predicts improved survival. (United States)

    Larsen, Jeremy T; Chee, Cheng E; Lust, John A; Greipp, Philip R; Rajkumar, S Vincent


    Standard myeloma treatment response criteria are determined principally by changes in the monoclonal protein. Reduction in the size of the proliferative component of malignant plasma cells may be an additional metric of assessing response to therapy. We retrospectively analyzed 176 patients with newly diagnosed myeloma with a measurable plasma cell labeling index (PCLI) at diagnosis and repeat measurement 4 months after initiation of therapy. PCLI response was defined as a ≥ 60% reduction. Baseline PCLI is an independent prognostic factor; therefore, we categorized patients into 3 groups: PCLI ≥ 3% (high), ≥ 1% (intermediate), and compared with 29 months in nonresponders (P = .02). Improved median overall survival with PCLI response occurred in the high initial PCLI group (28 vs 7 months; P = .003) and intermediate group (64 vs 24 months; P = .002). The application of PCLI response and serum M-spike response together provided further prognostic information. On multivariate analysis, the prognostic value of PCLI response was independent of β(2)-microglobulin, elevated creatinine, serum M-spike response, and baseline PCLI. We conclude that a significant reduction in plasma cell proliferation in patients with newly diagnosed myeloma is an important predictor of survival.

  12. Vital Signs Directed Therapy: Improving Care in an Intensive Care Unit in a Low-Income Country.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim Baker

    Full Text Available Global Critical Care is attracting increasing attention. At several million deaths per year, the worldwide burden of critical illness is greater than generally appreciated. Low income countries (LICs have a disproportionally greater share of critical illness, and yet critical care facilities are scarce in such settings. Routines utilizing abnormal vital signs to identify critical illness and trigger medical interventions have become common in high-income countries but have not been investigated in LICs. The aim of the study was to assess whether the introduction of a vital signs directed therapy protocol improved acute care and reduced mortality in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU in Tanzania.Prospective, before-and-after interventional study in the ICU of a university hospital in Tanzania. A context-appropriate protocol that defined danger levels of severely abnormal vital signs and stipulated acute treatment responses was implemented in a four week period using sensitisation, training, job aids, supervision and feedback. Acute treatment of danger signs at admission and during care in the ICU and in-hospital mortality were compared pre and post-implementation using regression models. Danger signs from 447 patients were included: 269 pre-implementation and 178 post-implementation. Acute treatment of danger signs was higher post-implementation (at admission: 72.9% vs 23.1%, p<0.001; in ICU: 16.6% vs 2.9%, p<0.001. A danger sign was five times more likely to be treated post-implementation (Prevalence Ratio (PR 4.9 (2.9-8.3. Intravenous fluids were given in response to 35.0% of hypotensive episodes post-implementation, as compared to 4.1% pre-implementation (PR 6.4 (2.5-16.2. In patients admitted with hypotension, mortality was lower post-implementation (69.2% vs 92.3% p = 0.02 giving a numbers-needed-to-treat of 4.3. Overall in-hospital mortality rates were unchanged (49.4% vs 49.8%, p = 0.94.The introduction of a vital signs directed therapy protocol

  13. Improving Integrated Care: Modelling the performance of an online community of practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ángel Díaz-Chao


    Full Text Available Introduction: This article aims to confirm the following core hypothesis: a Community of Practice’s use of a Web 2.0 platform for communication between primary and hospital care leads to improved primary care and fewer hospital referrals. This core hypothesis will be corroborated by testing a further five partial hypotheses that complete the main hypothesis being estimated.Methods: An ad-hoc questionnaire was designed and sent to a sample group of 357 professionals from the Badalona-Sant Adrià de Besòs Primary Care Service in Catalonia, Spain, which includes nine primary care centres and three specialist care centres. The study sample was formed by 159 respondents. The partial least squares methodology was used to estimate the model of the causal relationship and the proposed hypotheses.Results: It was found that when healthcare staff used social networks and information and communication technologies professionally, and the more contact hours they have with patients, the more a Web 2.0 platform was likely to be used for communication between primary and hospital care professionals. Such use led to improved primary care and fewer hospital referrals according to the opinions of health professionals on its use.Conclusions: The research suggests that the efficiency of medical practice is explained by the intensity of Web 2.0 platform use for communication between primary and specialist care professionals. Public policies promoting the use of information and communication technologies in communities of practice should go beyond the technological dimension and consider other professional, organisational and social determinants.

  14. Improving Self-Care of Patients with Chronic Disease using Online Personal Health Record

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amol Wagholikar


    Full Text Available Background Effective management of chronic diseases such as prostate cancer is important. Research suggests a tendency to use self-care treatment options such as over-the-counter (OTC complementary medications among prostate cancer patients. The current trend in patient-driven recording of health data in an online Personal Health Record (PHR presents an opportunity to develop new data-driven approaches for improving prostate cancer patient care. However, the ability of current online solutions to share patients’ data for better decision support is limited. An informatics approach may improve online sharing of self-care interventions among these patients. It can also provide better evidence to support decisions made during their self-managed care.Aims To identify requirements for an online system and describe a new case-based reasoning (CBR method for improving self-care of advanced prostate cancer patients in an online PHR environment. Method A non-identifying online survey was conducted to understand self-care patterns among prostate cancer patients and to identify requirements for an online information system. The pilot study was carried out between August 2010 and December 2010. A case-base of 52 patients was developed. Results The data analysis showed self-care patterns among the prostate cancer patients. Selenium (55% was the common complementary supplement used by the patients. Paracetamol (about 45% was the commonly used OTC by the patients. Conclusion The results of this study specified requirements for an online case-based reasoning information system. The outcomes of this study are being incorporated in design of the proposed Artificial Intelligence (AI driven patient journey browser system. A basic version of the proposed system is currently being considered for implementation.

  15. A practical guide to applying lean tools and management principles to health care improvement projects. (United States)

    Simon, Ross W; Canacari, Elena G


    Manufacturing organizations have used Lean management principles for years to help eliminate waste, streamline processes, and cut costs. This pragmatic approach to structured problem solving can be applied to health care process improvement projects. Health care leaders can use a step-by-step approach to document processes and then identify problems and opportunities for improvement using a value stream process map. Leaders can help a team identify problems and root causes and consider additional problems associated with methods, materials, manpower, machinery, and the environment by using a cause-and-effect diagram. The team then can organize the problems identified into logical groups and prioritize the groups by impact and difficulty. Leaders must manage action items carefully to instill a sense of accountability in those tasked to complete the work. Finally, the team leaders must ensure that a plan is in place to hold the gains.

  16. A cluster randomized trial to improve adherence to evidence-based guidelines on diabetes and reduce clinical inertia in primary care physicians in Belgium: study protocol [NTR 1369].

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borgermans, L.D.A.; Goderis, G.; Broeke, C.V.; Mathieu, C.; Aertgeerts, B.; Verbeke, G.; Carbonez, A.; Ivanova, A.; Grol, R.P.T.M.; Heyrman, J.


    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Most quality improvement programs in diabetes care incorporate aspects of clinician education, performance feedback, patient education, care management, and diabetes care teams to support primary care physicians. Few studies have applied all of these dimensions to address clini

  17. Reflections on Continuous Improvement of the Quality of Medical Care%医疗质量持续改进的思索

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    To build a quality comprehensive medical care center, improve the quality of medical care and ensure patients’safety is the core and permanent topic for hospital management. The qual-ity of medical care is the lifeblood of a hospital’s survive and de-velopment, so the hospital should implement the core system of medical care and continuously improve the quality of medical care.%  建设“服务好、质量好、医德好、群众满意”的大型综合医疗中心,提高医疗质量、保证患者安全是医院管理的核心内容和永恒的主题。医疗质量是医院生存与发展的命脉,落实医疗核心制度,持续改进医疗质量,不断提高诊疗水平,减少差错事故,保障患者安全。

  18. Differential distribution improves gene selection stability and has competitive classification performance for patient survival. (United States)

    Strbenac, Dario; Mann, Graham J; Yang, Jean Y H; Ormerod, John T


    A consistent difference in average expression level, often referred to as differential expression (DE), has long been used to identify genes useful for classification. However, recent cancer studies have shown that when transcription factors or epigenetic signals become deregulated, a change in expression variability (DV) of target genes is frequently observed. This suggests that assessing the importance of genes by either differential expression or variability alone potentially misses sets of important biomarkers that could lead to improved predictions and treatments. Here, we describe a new approach for assessing the importance of genes based on differential distribution (DD), which combines information from differential expression and differential variability into a unified metric. We show that feature ranking and selection stability based on DD can perform two to three times better than DE or DV alone, and that DD yields equivalent error rates to DE and DV. Finally, assessing genes via differential distribution produces a complementary set of selected genes to DE and DV, potentially opening up new categories of biomarkers.

  19. Alpha B-crystallin improved survival of retinal ganglion cells in a rat model of acute ocular hypertension

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhihong Wu; Layi Wang; Shike Hou


    Increased endogenous αB-crystallin protein levels have been shown to reduce cell apoptosis,although the effects of exogenous αB-crystallin protein remain poorly understood.The present study established an acute ocular hypertension model in the right eye of Sprague-Dawley rats.Fluorogold retrograde tracing and immunofluorescence methods showed that the number of retinal ganglion cells decreased in the right eyes and caspase-3 expression increased following acute ocular hypertension.Intravitreal injection of αB-crystallin in the right eye increased the number of retinal ganglion cells and reduced caspase-3 expression.Results demonstrated that exogenous αB-crystallin protein inhibited caspase-3 expression and improved retinal ganglion cell survival following acute ocular hypertension.

  20. A systematic review of interventions to improve postpartum retention of women in PMTCT and ART care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pascal Geldsetzer


    Full Text Available Introduction: The World Health Organization recommends lifelong antiretroviral therapy (ART for all pregnant and breastfeeding women living with HIV. Effective transitioning from maternal and child health to ART services, and long-term retention in ART care postpartum is crucial to the successful implementation of lifelong ART for pregnant women. This systematic review aims to determine which interventions improve (1 retention within prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT programmes after birth, (2 transitioning from PMTCT to general ART programmes in the postpartum period, and (3 retention of postpartum women in general ART programmes. Methods: We searched Medline, Embase, ISI Web of Knowledge, the regional World Health Organization databases and conference abstracts for data published between 2002 and 2015. The quality of all included studies was assessed using the GRADE criteria. Results and Discussion: After screening 8324 records, we identified ten studies for inclusion in this review, all of which were from sub-Saharan Africa except for one from the United Kingdom. Two randomized trials found that phone calls and/or text messages improved early (six to ten weeks postpartum retention in PMTCT. One cluster-randomized trial and three cohort studies found an inconsistent impact of different levels of integration between antenatal care/PMTCT and ART care on postpartum retention. The inconsistent results of the four identified studies on care integration are likely due to low study quality, and heterogeneity in intervention design and outcome measures. Several randomized trials on postpartum retention in HIV care are currently under way. Conclusions: Overall, the evidence base for interventions to improve postpartum retention in HIV care is weak. Nevertheless, there is some evidence that phone-based interventions can improve retention in PMTCT in the first one to three months postpartum.

  1. Using COPE To Improve Quality of Care: The Experience of the Family Planning Association of Kenya. (United States)

    Bradley, Janet


    COPE (Client-Oriented, Provider-Efficient) methodology, a self-assessment tool that has been used in 35 countries around the world, was used to improve the quality of care in family planning clinics in Kenya. COPE involves a process that legitimately invests power with providers and clinic-level staff. It gives providers more control over their…

  2. [Dutch Institute for Health Care Improvement revised guideline, 'Sexually transmitted diseases and neonatal herpes'

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bleker, O.P.; Meijden, W.I. van der; Wittenberg, J.; Bergen, J.E. van; Boeke, A.J.; Doornum, G.J.J. van; Henquet, C.J.; Galama, J.M.D.; Postma, M.J.; Prins, J.M.; Voorst Vader, P.C. van


    The Dutch Institute for Health Care Improvement revised guideline, 'Sexually transmitted diseases and neonatal herpes' summarises the current scientific position on the diagnosis and treatment of a great number of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and neonatal herpes. Symptomatic treatment of susp

  3. Improving motivation among primary health care workers in Tanzania: a health worker perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manongi, Rachel N; Marchant, Tanya C; Bygbjerg, Ib Christian


    in the primary health care facilities in Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania, in terms of their motivation to work, satisfaction and frustration, and to identify areas for sustainable improvement to the services they provide.The primary issues arising pertain to complexities of multitasking in an environment of staff...

  4. Building a Culture of Inclusion: Disability as Opportunity for Organizational Growth and Improving Patient Care. (United States)

    Ailey, Sarah H; Brown, Paula; Friese, Tanya R; Dugan, Shelia


    Administrators at Rush University Medical Center have made a commitment to diversity, including accommodating disabilities in the workplace and for students. This article explains extensive multilevel accommodations instituted by Rush University Medical Center that promote organizational growth and a healthier work environment and improve patient care.

  5. Using the Open Airways Curriculum to Improve Self-Care for Third Grade Children with Asthma. (United States)

    Horner, Sharon D.


    Examined the effect of a school-based asthma management program, which featured brief class sessions, for improving the knowledge and self-care of third graders with asthma and increasing parents' awareness. Pre- and postintervention parent and student surveys indicated that brief class sessions were feasible, and children demonstrated increased…

  6. The ENDOCARE questionnaire guides European endometriosis clinics to improve the patient-centeredness of their care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dancet, E.A.; Apers, S.; Kluivers, K.B.; Kremer, J.A.M.; Sermeus, W.; Devriendt, C.; Nelen, W.L.D.M.; D'Hooghe, T.M.


    STUDY QUESTION: How patient-centered are two included specialized endometriosis clinics relative to each other and how can they improve the patient-centeredness of their care? SUMMARY ANSWER: The validated ENDOCARE questionnaire (ECQ) reliably concluded that the adjusted overall patient-centeredness

  7. Developing a nurse led hospice outpatient clinic to improve palliative care services. (United States)

    Lawton, Catherine

    A team of palliative care clinical nurse specialists at the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice in Farnham, Surrey, set up a hospice based outpatient clinic to improve services for patients with cancer. This article examines how the team used clinical audit, a staff questionnaire and patient feedback to evaluate the service and make recommendations for the future development of the clinic.

  8. How nurses can use social enterprise to improve services in health care. (United States)

    Dawes, David

    This article describes the concept of social enterprise in nursing, and outlines how this model can help to improve care delivered to patients. It provides advice for nurses interested in pursuing this entrepreneurial route and also offers case studies demonstrating how the social enterprise model has been implemented in practice.

  9. Improving population management through pharmacist-primary care integration: a pilot study. (United States)

    Kennedy, Amanda G; Chen, Harry; Corriveau, Michele; MacLean, Charles D


    Pharmacists have unique skills that may benefit primary care practices. The objective of this demonstration project was to determine the impact of integrating pharmacists into patient-centered medical homes, with a focus on population management. Pharmacists were partnered into 5 primary care practices in Vermont 1 day per week to provide direct patient care, population-based medication management, and prescriber education. The main measures included a description of drug therapy problems identified and cost avoidance models. The pharmacists identified 708 drug therapy problems through direct patient care (336/708; 47.5%), population-based strategies (276/708; 38.9%), and education (96/708; 13.6%). Common population-based strategies included adjusting doses and discontinuing unnecessary medications. Pharmacists' recommendations to correct drug therapy problems were accepted by prescribers 86% of the time, when data about acceptance were known. Of the 49 recommendations not accepted, 47/49 (96%) were population-based and 2/49 (4%) were related to direct patient care. The cost avoidance model suggests $2.11 in cost was avoided for every $1.00 spent on a pharmacist ($373,092/$176,690). There was clear value in integrating pharmacists into primary care teams. Their inclusion prevented adverse drug events, avoided costs, and improved patient outcomes. Primary care providers should consider pharmacists well suited to offer direct patient care, population-based management, and prescriber education to their practices. To be successful, pharmacists must have full permission to document findings in the primary care practices' electronic health records. Given that many pharmacist services do not involve billable activities, sustainability requires identifying alternative funding mechanisms that do not rely on a traditional fee-for-service approach.

  10. Who would most benefit from improved integrated care? Implementing an analytical strategy in South Somerset

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Panagiotis Kasteridis


    Full Text Available Aims: The Symphony Project is designed to identify which groups of the South Somerset population in England would most benefit from greater integration across primary, community, acute and social care settings.Methods: We analysed linked health and social care data for the entire South Somerset population for the financial year 2012/2013. The data captured acute, primary, community, mental health and social care utilisation and costs; demographic characteristics; and indicators of morbidity for each individual. We employed generalized linear models to analyse variation in annual health and social care costs for all 114,874 members of the South Somerset population and for 1458 individuals with three or more selected chronic conditions.Results: We found that multi-morbidity, not age, was the key driver of health and social care costs. Moreover, the number of chronic conditions is as useful as information about specific conditions at predicting costs. We are able to explain 7% of the variation in total annual costs for population as a whole, and 14% of the variation for those with three or more conditions. We are best able to explain primary care costs, but explanatory power is poor for mental health and social care costs.Conclusions: The linked dataset makes it possible to understand existing patterns of health and social care utilisation and to analyse variation in annual costs, for the whole population and for sub-groups, in total and by setting. This has made it possible to identify who would most benefit from improved integrated care and to calculate capitated budgets to support financial integration.

  11. Customized Care: An intervention to Improve Communication and health outcomes in multimorbidity (United States)

    Wittink, Marsha N.; Yilmaz, Sule; Walsh, Patrick; Chapman, Ben; Duberstein, Paul


    Introduction Many primary care patients with multimorbidity (two or more chronic conditions) and depression or anxiety have day-to-day challenges that affect health outcomes, such as having financial or housing concerns, or dealing with social or emotional stressors. Yet, primary care providers (PCPs) are often unaware of patients' daily challenges coping with chronic disease. We developed Customized Care, an intervention, to address the barriers to effective communication about patient's day-to-day challenges. Methods In this report we describe the rationale and design of a randomized clinical pilot study to examine the effect of Customized Care on patient-PCP communication and patient health outcomes, including depression, anxiety and functional outcomes. Customized Care comprises two components: (1) a computer-based discussion prioritization tool (DPT) designed to empower patients to communicate their health related priorities; and (2) a customized question prompt list (QPL) tailored to these priorities. Primary care clinic patients and PCPs participated in the study, which consisted of in-person patient assessments, audio recording and transcription of the patient-PCP office visit, and follow-up patient assessments by phone. Results We describe study participant demographics and development of a coding manual to assess communication within the office visit. Participants were recruited from an urban primary care clinic. Sixty patients and 12 PCPs were enrolled over six months. Conclusions With better communication about everyday challenges, patients and PCPs can have more informed discussions about health care options that positively influence patient outcomes. We expect that Customized Care will improve patient-PCP communication about day-to-day challenges, which can lead to better health outcomes. PMID:28191546

  12. Salvianolic acid B enhances in vitro angiogenesis and improves skin flap survival in Sprague-Dawley rats. (United States)

    Lay, Ing-Shiow; Hsieh, Cheng-Chu; Chiu, Jen-Hwey; Shiao, Ming-Shi; Lui, Wing-Yiu; Wu, Chew-Wun


    Insufficient angiogenesis and microcirculatory intravascular clotting have been implicated in the pathophysiology of skin flap failure. Salvianolic acid B (Sal B), isolated from Salvia miltiorrhiza, has been reported to enhance angiogenesis in vitro. This study was aimed to determine the efficacy of Sal B on ischemia-reperfusion injury of the skin flap in Sprague-Dawley rats. Sal B was administered intraperitoneally 2 h before operation, and on the 2nd and 4th days after surgical elevation of an extended epigastric adipocutaneous flap (5 x 7 cm) in ketamine-anesthetized rats. Flap ischemia was achieved by ligating the right superficial epigastric artery and vein and clamping the left superficial epigastric artery and vein for 3 h and then released. Percentage of flap necrosis area (FNA) and plasma levels of aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, creatinine, and malondialdehyde were measured at 7 days after the operation. Animals were divided into six groups, including: vehicle, Sal B low dose (5 mg/kg), Sal B high dose (50 mg/kg) and each with [mesh(+)] or without mesh [mesh(-)] placement. In the three groups with mesh(+), FNA in control flaps was 53.7 +/- 6.9%, whereas low-dose and high-dose Sal B significantly improved flap survival with FNA 27.4 +/- 3.8% and 25.3 +/- 4.3%, respectively (P mesh(-), control flaps were 35.9 +/- 4.5%, whereas high-dose Sal B also significantly improved flap survival with FNA 17.9 +/- 4.7% (P < 0.05, one-way ANOVA). There were no differences in aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, creatinine, or malondialdehyde between groups. We conclude that Sal B attenuates ischemia-reperfusion injury of skin flap, and provides therapeutic potential in reconstructive plastic surgery.

  13. Hemo oxygenase-1 induction in vitro and in vivo can yield pancreas islet xenograft survival and improve islet function

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Xi; SU Chang; ZHANG Zheng-yun; ZHANG Ming-jun; GU Wei-qiong; LI Xiao-ying; LI Hong-wei; ZHOU Guang-wen


    Background The induced expression of heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) in donor islets improves allograft survival.Cobalt protoporphyrin (CoPP) could significantly enhance the expression of HO-1 mRNA and protein in rat islet safely.Our work was to study how to protect pancreatic islet xenograft by CoPP-induction.Methods Islet xenografts treated with CoPP-induction and CoPP+ Zinc protoporphyrin (ZnPP) in vitro and in vivo were randomly transplanted into murine subrenal capsule; then the graft survival time was compared by blood glucose level and pathological examination and meanwhile the interferon γ (IFN-γ),tumor necrosis factor a (TNF-α),interleukin 10 (IL-10) and IL-1β level in serum and their mRNA and HO-1 mRNA and protein expression were examined.Results Islets with CoPP-induction under low- and high-glucose stimulation exhibited much higher insulin secretion compared with other three groups.CoPP-induction could increase higher expression of HO-1 (mRNA:3.33- and 76.09-fold in vitro and in vivo; protein:2.85- and 58.72-fold).The normoglycemia time in induction groups ((14.63±1.19) and (16.88+1.64) days) was significantly longer.The pathological examination showed less lymphocyte infiltration in induction groups.The IL-10 level and its mRNA in induction groups were significantly higher.Conclusions The HO-1 induced by CoPP would significantly improve function,prolong normoglycemia time and reduce lymphocyte infiltration.Meanwhile CoPP-induction in vivo had more beneficial effects than in vitro.Its mechanism could be related to immune-modulation of IL-10.

  14. Improved results in paediatric diabetes care using a quality registry in an improvement collaborative: a case study in Sweden.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anette Peterson

    Full Text Available Several studies show that good metabolic control is important for children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes. In Sweden, there are large differences in mean haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c in different hospitals and difficulties implementing national guidelines in everyday practice. This study shows how the participation in an improvement collaborative could facilitate improvements in the quality of care by paediatric diabetes teams. The Swedish paediatric diabetes quality registry, SWEDIABKIDS was used as a tool and resource for feedback and outcome measures.Twelve teams at paediatric diabetes centres, caring for 30% (2302/7660 of patients in Sweden, participated in an 18-month quality improvement program. Each team defined treatment targets, areas needing improvement, and action plans. The main outcome was the centre patients' mean HbA1c levels, but other clinical variables and change concepts were also studied. Data from the previous six months were compared with the first six months after starting the program, and the long-term follow up after another eleven months.All centres reduced mean HbA1c during the second and third periods compared with the first. The mean reduction for all was 3·7 mmol/mol (p<0.001, compared with non-participating centres who improved their mean HbA1c with 1·7 mmol/mol during the same period. Many of the participating centres reduced the frequency of severe hypoglycaemia and/or ketoacidosis, and five centres reached their goal of ensuring that all patients had some sort of physical activity at least once weekly. Change concepts were, for example, improved guidelines, appointment planning, informing the patients, improving teamwork and active use of the registry, and health promotion activities.By involving paediatric diabetes teams in a quality improvement collaborative together with access to a quality register, the quality of paediatric diabetes care can improve, thereby contributing to a reduced risk of late

  15. Adjuvant IMRT/XELOX radiochemotherapy improves long-term overall- and disease-free survival in advanced gastric cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boda-Heggemann, J.; Schneider, V. [Heidelberg Univ., Universitaetsmedizin Mannheim (Germany). Dept. of Radiation Oncology; Weiss, C. [Heidelberg Univ., Universitaetsmedizin Mannheim (Germany). Dept. of Biomathematics and Medical Statistics] [and others


    Purpose: In a retrospective analysis, adjuvant intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) combined with modern chemotherapy improved advanced gastric cancer survival rates compared to a combination of three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT) and conventional chemotherapy. We report on the long-term outcomes of two consecutive patient cohorts that were treated with either IMRT and intensive chemotherapy, or 3D-CRT and conventional chemotherapy. Patients and methods: Between 2001 and 2008, 65 consecutive gastric cancer patients received either 3D-CRT (n = 27) or IMRT (n = 38) following tumor resection. Chemotherapy comprised predominantly 5-fluorouracil/folinic acid (5-FU/FA) in the earlier cohort and capecitabine plus oxaliplatin (XELOX) in the latter. The primary endpoints were overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS). Results: Median OS times were 18 and 43 months in the 3D-CRT and IMRT groups, respectively (p = 0.0602). Actuarial 5-year OS rates were 26 and 47 %, respectively. Within the IMRT group, XELOX gave better results than 5-FU/FA in terms of OS, but this difference was not statistically significant. The primary cause of death in both groups was distant metastasis. Median DFS times were 14 and 35 months in the 3D-CRT and IMRT groups, respectively (p = 0.0693). Actuarial 5-year DFS rates were 22 and 44 %, respectively. Among patients receiving 5-FU/FA, DFS tended to be better in the IMRT group, but this was not statistically significant. A similar analysis for the XELOX group was not possible as 3D-CRT was almost never used to treat these patients. No late toxicity exceeding grade 3 or secondary tumors were observed. Conclusion: After a median follow-up period of over 5 years, OS and DFS were improved in the IMRT/XELOX treated patients compared to the 3D-CRT/5-FU/FA group. Long-term observation revealed no clinical indications of therapy-induced secondary tumors or renal toxicity. (orig.)

  16. De-escalation empirical antibiotic therapy improved survival for patients with severe aplastic anemia treated with antithymocyte globulin. (United States)

    Fu, Rong; Chen, Tong; Song, Jia; Wang, Guojin; Li, Lijuan; Ruan, Erbao; Liu, Hui; Wang, Yihao; Wang, Huaquan; Xing, Limin; Wu, Yuhong; Liu, Hong; Qu, Wen; Shao, Zonghong


    We aimed to investigate the efficacy and safety of de-escalation empirical therapy for controlling infection in patients with severe aplastic anaemia (SAA) treated with antithymocyte globulin (ATG). Eighty-seven ATG-treated SAA patients who had microbiological culture-confirmed infections from 2006 to 2015 in our center were retrospectively analyzed. The efficacy of de-escalation and non-de-escalation therapy was compared. Among all 87 patients, 63 patients were treated with de-escalation therapy and 24 patients with non-de-escalation therapy. More patients showed response to anti-infection treatment in de-escalation group than in non-de-escalation group both on day 7 (60.32% vs. 25.00%, P = 0.003) and on day 30 (79.37% vs. 58.33%, P = 0.047) since the initial antimicrobial therapy. On day 30, more patients had increased absolute neutrophil count in de-escalation group compared with non-de-escalation group (76.19% vs. 45.83%, P = 0.007), and de-escalation group had lower morality rate (17.46% vs. 37.50%, P = 0.047) and better survival outcome (P = 0.023) on day 90. Twenty-three patients in de-escalation group and 5 patients in non-escalation group received granulocyte transfusions. Granulocyte transfusions helped to control infections in both de-escalation group (P = 0.027) and non-de-escalation group (P = 0.042) on day 7, but did not improve survival on day 90. We concluded that de-escalation antibiotics improved survival in SAA patients after ATG treatment. Early administration of broad-spectrum antibiotics pending microbiological cultures combined with a commitment to change to narrow-spectrum antibiotics should be recommended for controlling infections in SAA patients treated with ATG. Granulocyte transfusions might be an adjunctive therapy in controlling infections.

  17. Baicalin improves survival in a murine model of polymicrobial sepsis via suppressing inflammatory response and lymphocyte apoptosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiali Zhu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: An imbalance between overwhelming inflammation and lymphocyte apoptosis is the main cause of high mortality in patients with sepsis. Baicalin, the main active ingredient of the Scutellaria root, exerts anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptotic, and even antibacterial properties in inflammatory and infectious diseases. However, the therapeutic effect of baicalin on polymicrobial sepsis remains unknown. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Polymicrobial sepsis was induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP in C57BL/6 mice. Mice were infused with baicalin intraperitoneally at 1 h, 6 h and 12 h after CLP. Survival rates were assessed over the subsequent 8 days. Bacterial burdens in blood and peritoneal cavity were calculated to assess the bacterial clearance. Neutrophil count in peritoneal lavage fluid was also calculated. Injuries to the lung and liver were detected by hematoxylin and eosin staining. Levels of cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor (TNF-alpha, interleukin (IL-6, IL-10 and IL-17, in blood and peritoneum were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Adaptive immune function was assessed by apoptosis of lymphocytes in the thymus and counts of different cell types in the spleen. Baicalin significantly enhanced bacterial clearance and improved survival of septic mice. The number of neutrophils in peritoneal lavage fluid was reduced by baicalin. Less neutrophil infiltration of the lung and liver in baicalin-treated mice was associated with attenuated injuries to these organs. Baicalin significantly reduced the levels of proinflammatory cytokines but increased the level of anti-inflammatory cytokine in blood and peritoneum. Apoptosis of CD3(+ T cell was inhibited in the thymus. The numbers of CD4(+, CD8(+ T lymphocytes and dendritic cells (DCs were higher, while the number of CD4(+CD25(+ regulatory T cells was lower in the baicalin group compared with the CLP group. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Baicalin improves survival of mice

  18. Effect of interventions to improve health care services for ethnic minority populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise Forsetlund


    Full Text Available Objectives: Since the early 1990s there has been an increasing awareness of social and ethnic inequity in health and for the last few years there has also been an increasing focus on disparities in the quality of health services to ethnic minority groups. The aim of this review was to collect and summarise in a systematic and transparent manner the effect of interventions to improve health care services for ethnic minorities.Methods: We searched several medical databases for systematic reviews and randomised controlled trials. Two researchers independently screened for and selected studies, assessed risk of bias, extracted data and graded the quality of the evidence for each outcome in the included studies. The analysis was done qualitatively by describing studies and presenting them in tables.Results: We included 19 primary studies. The interventions were targeted at reducing clinical, structural and organisational barriers against good quality health care services. Eight studies examined the effect of educational interventions in improving outcomes within cross-cultural communication, smoking cessation, asthma care, cancer screening and mental health care. In six comparisons the effect of reminders for improving health care services and patient outcomes within cancer screening and diabetes care was examined. Two studies compared professional remote interpretation services to traditional interpretation services, two studies compared ethnic matching of client and therapist and two studies examined the effect of providing additional support in the form of more personnel in the treatment of diabetes and kidney transplant patients. Most patients were African-Americans and Latin-Americans and all ages were represented.Conclusions: Educational interventions and electronic reminders to physicians may in some contexts improve health care and health outcomes for minority patients. The quality of the evidence varied from low to very low. The quality of

  19. Survival of multiple myeloma patients in the era of novel therapies confirms the improvement in patients younger than 75 years: a population-based analysis. (United States)

    Pozzi, Samantha; Marcheselli, Luigi; Bari, Alessia; Liardo, Eliana V; Marcheselli, Raffaella; Luminari, Stefano; Quaresima, Micol; Cirilli, Claudia; Ferri, Paola; Federico, Massimo; Sacchi, Stefano


    Novel treatments for multiple myeloma (MM) have shown promising results in clinical trials, but the advantage in unselected patients is still unclear. In order to evaluate whether novel therapies impact survival of MM patients, we performed a population-based analysis on data collected by the Modena Cancer Registry from 1989 to 2009. The analysis evaluated 1206 newly diagnosed MM patients collected in the years 1988-96 (conventional therapy), 1997-05 (high dose melphalan and autologous transplant), and 2006-09 (novel agents era). Both relative survival (RS) and overall survival (OS) improved over the years, but not equally in the three groups. For patients aged survival of MM patients aged survival. Despite the limits of this study, these data refer to an unselected population, giving a picture of every day clinical practice.

  20. Future improvements and implementation of animal care practices within the animal testing regulatory environment. (United States)

    Guittin, Pierre; Decelle, Thierry


    Animal welfare is an increasingly important concern when considering biomedical experimentation. Many of the emerging regulations and guidelines specifically address animal welfare in laboratory animal care and use. The current revision of the appendix of the European Convention, ETS123 (Council of Europe), updates and improves on the current animal care standardization in Europe. New guidelines from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries Association focus specifically on safety testing. These guidelines will affect the way toxicity studies are conducted and therefore the global drug development process. With the 3Rs principles taken into account, consideration regarding animal welfare will demand changes in animal care practices in regulatory safety testing. The most significant future improvements in animal care and use practices are likely to be environmental enrichment, management of animal pain and distress, and improved application of the humane endpoints. Our challenge is to implement respective guidelines based on scientific data and animal welfare, through a complex interplay of regulatory objective and public opinion. The current goal is to work toward solutions that continue to provide relevant animal models for risk assessment in drug development and that are science based. In this way, future improvements in animal care and use practices can be founded on facts, scientific results, and analysis. Some of these improvements become common practice in some countries. International harmonization can facilitate the development and practical application of "best scientific practices" by the consensus development process that harmonization requires. Since the implementation of good laboratory practices (GLP) standards in safety testing, these new regulations and recommendations represent a new way forward for animal safety studies.