WorldWideScience

Sample records for methodological quality varied

  1. Systematic review of communication partner training in aphasia: methodological quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherney, Leora R; Simmons-Mackie, Nina; Raymer, Anastasia; Armstrong, Elizabeth; Holland, Audrey

    2013-10-01

    Twenty-three studies identified from a previous systematic review examining the effects of communication partner training on persons with aphasia and their communication partners were evaluated for methodological quality. Two reviewers rated the studies on defined methodological quality criteria relevant to each study design. There were 11 group studies, seven single-subject participant design studies, and five qualitative studies. Quality scores were derived for each study. The mean inter-rater reliability of scores for each study design ranged from 85-93%, with Cohen's Kappa indicating substantial agreement between raters. Methodological quality of research on communication partner training in aphasia was highly varied. Overall, group studies employed the least rigorous methodology as compared to single subject and qualitative research. Only two of 11 group studies complied with more than half of the quality criteria. No group studies reported therapist blinding and only one group study reported participant blinding. Across all types of studies, the criterion of treatment fidelity was most commonly omitted. Failure to explicitly report certain methodological quality criteria may account for low ratings. Using methodological rating scales specific to the type of study design may help improve the methodological quality of aphasia treatment studies, including those on communication partner training.

  2. Methodological quality of systematic reviews on influenza vaccination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remschmidt, Cornelius; Wichmann, Ole; Harder, Thomas

    2014-03-26

    There is a growing body of evidence on the risks and benefits of influenza vaccination in various target groups. Systematic reviews are of particular importance for policy decisions. However, their methodological quality can vary considerably. To investigate the methodological quality of systematic reviews on influenza vaccination (efficacy, effectiveness, safety) and to identify influencing factors. A systematic literature search on systematic reviews on influenza vaccination was performed, using MEDLINE, EMBASE and three additional databases (1990-2013). Review characteristics were extracted and the methodological quality of the reviews was evaluated using the assessment of multiple systematic reviews (AMSTAR) tool. U-test, Kruskal-Wallis test, chi-square test, and multivariable linear regression analysis were used to assess the influence of review characteristics on AMSTAR-score. Fourty-six systematic reviews fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Average methodological quality was high (median AMSTAR-score: 8), but variability was large (AMSTAR range: 0-11). Quality did not differ significantly according to vaccination target group. Cochrane reviews had higher methodological quality than non-Cochrane reviews (p=0.001). Detailed analysis showed that this was due to better study selection and data extraction, inclusion of unpublished studies, and better reporting of study characteristics (all p<0.05). In the adjusted analysis, no other factor, including industry sponsorship or journal impact factor had an influence on AMSTAR score. Systematic reviews on influenza vaccination showed large differences regarding their methodological quality. Reviews conducted by the Cochrane collaboration were of higher quality than others. When using systematic reviews to guide the development of vaccination recommendations, the methodological quality of a review in addition to its content should be considered. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Methodological quality of guidelines in gastroenterology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malheiro, Rui; de Monteiro-Soares, Matilde; Hassan, Cesare; Dinis-Ribeiro, Mário

    2014-06-01

    Clinical guidelines are a common feature in modern endoscopy practice and they are being produced faster than ever. However, their methodological quality is rarely assessed. This study evaluated the methodological quality of current clinical guidelines in the field of gastroenterology, with an emphasis on endoscopy. Practice guidelines published by the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG), American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ESGE), British Society of Gastroenterology (BSG), National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) were searched between September and October 2012 and evaluated using the AGREE II (Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation) instrument (23 items, scores 1 - 7 for each item; higher scores mean better quality). A total of 100 guidelines were assessed. The mean number of items scoring 6 or 7 per guideline was 9.2 (out of 23 items). Overall, 99 % of guidelines failed to include the target population in the development process, and 96 % did not report facilitators and barriers to guideline application. In addition, 86 % did not include advice or tools, and 94 % did not present monitoring or auditing criteria. The global methodological quality of clinical guidelines in the field of gastroenterology is poor, particularly regarding involvement of the target population in the development of guidelines and in the provision of clear suggestions to practitioners. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  4. Q methodology, risk training and quality management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKeown, M; Hinks, M; Stowell-Smith, M; Mercer, D; Forster, J

    1999-01-01

    The results of a Q methodological study of professional understandings of the notion of risk in mental health services within the UK are discussed in relation to the relevance for staff training and quality assurance. The study attempted to access the diversity of understandings of risk issues amongst a multi-professional group of staff (n = 60) attending inter-agency risk training workshops in 1998. Q methodology is presented as both an appropriate means for such inquiry and as a novel experiential technique for training purposes. A tentative argument is advanced that the qualitative accounts generated by Q research could assist in systematic reviews of quality, complementing the singularly quantitative approaches typically represented in the audit process.

  5. Urbanism & urban qualities New data and methodologies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2009-01-01

    The interest in urban spaces and their qualities has become stronger in recent years. A substantial volume of projects aims to create attractive urban spaces reasons of Sustainability, Quality of Life and urban vitality. But who actually uses the urban spaces, which urban spaces are used? How do...... they use them? What characterizes the good urban space? And how and by who is it evaluated? How is a better co-operation between urban space researchers, decision makers and users established? Is it the right urban spaces which receive investments? How can research optimize the basis for decisions......?   Proceedings from the conference "Urbanism & urban qualities - new data & methodologies" held 24th of June 2009 at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen....

  6. A Methodology for Quality Problems Diagnosis in SMEs

    OpenAIRE

    Humberto N. Teixeira; Isabel S. Lopes; Sérgio D. Sousa

    2012-01-01

    This article proposes a new methodology to be used by SMEs (Small and Medium enterprises) to characterize their performance in quality, highlighting weaknesses and area for improvement. The methodology aims to identify the principal causes of quality problems and help to prioritize improvement initiatives. This is a self-assessment methodology that intends to be easy to implement by companies with low maturity level in quality. The methodology is organized in six different steps which include...

  7. Air quality estimation by computational intelligence methodologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ćirić Ivan T.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The subject of this study is to compare different computational intelligence methodologies based on artificial neural networks used for forecasting an air quality parameter - the emission of CO2, in the city of Niš. Firstly, inputs of the CO2 emission estimator are analyzed and their measurement is explained. It is known that the traffic is the single largest emitter of CO2 in Europe. Therefore, a proper treatment of this component of pollution is very important for precise estimation of emission levels. With this in mind, measurements of traffic frequency and CO2 concentration were carried out at critical intersections in the city, as well as the monitoring of a vehicle direction at the crossroad. Finally, based on experimental data, different soft computing estimators were developed, such as feed forward neural network, recurrent neural network, and hybrid neuro-fuzzy estimator of CO2 emission levels. Test data for some characteristic cases presented at the end of the paper shows good agreement of developed estimator outputs with experimental data. Presented results are a true indicator of the implemented method usability. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. III42008-2/2011: Evaluation of Energy Performances and br. TR35016/2011: Indoor Environment Quality of Educational Buildings in Serbia with Impact to Health and Research of MHD Flows around the Bodies, in the Tip Clearances and Channels and Application in the MHD Pumps Development

  8. Methodology of quality control for brachytherapy {sup 125}I seeds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moura, Eduardo S.; Zeituni, Carlos A.; Manzoli, Jose E.; Rostelato, Maria Elisa C.M. [Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares (IPEN/CNEN-SP), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)]. E-mail: esmoura@ipen.br

    2007-07-01

    This paper presents the methodology of quality control of {sup 125}I seeds used for brachytherapy. The {sup 125}I seeds are millimeter titanium capsules widely used in permanent implants of prostate cancer, allowing a high dose within the tumour and a low dose on the surrounding tissues, with very low harm to the other tissues. Besides, with this procedure, the patients have a low impotence rate and a small incidence of urinary incontinence. To meet the medical standards, an efficient quality control is necessary, showing values with the minimum uncertainness possible, concerning the seeds dimensions and their respective activities. The medical needles are used to insert the seeds inside the prostate. The needles used in brachytherapy have an internal diameter of 1.0 mm, so it is necessary {sup 125}I seeds with an external maximum diameter of 0.85 mm. For the seeds and the spacer positioning on the planning sheet, the seeds must have a length between 4.5 and 5.0 mm. The activities must not vary more than 5% in each batch of {sup 125}I seeds. For this methodology, we used two ionization chamber detectors and one caliper. In this paper, the methodology using one control batch with 75 seeds manufactured by GE Health care Ltd is presented. (author)

  9. Quality Assurance in Trichiasis Surgery: a methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchan, John C; Limburg, Hans; Burton, Matthew J

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Trachoma remains a significant cause of blindness in many parts of the world. The major route to blindness involves upper lid entropion leading to trachomatous trichiasis (TT) which promotes progressive corneal opacification. The provision of surgery to correct TT in the populations most severely affected is a major challenge for the global effort to eliminate Trachoma blindness by the year 2020. Most attention has been paid to increasing the quantity of TT surgery performed, and large numbers of non-doctor operators have been trained to this end. Surgical audit by those performing TT surgery is not a routine part of any national trachoma control programme, and no effective mechanism exists for identifying surgeons experiencing poor outcomes. We propose a methodology for surgical audit at the level of the individual surgeon based on Lot Quality Assurance. A set number of patients operated on previously for upper eyelid TT are examined to detect the recurrence of TT. The number of recurrent cases found will lead to categorisation of the TT surgeon to either “high recurrence” or “low recurrence” with reasonable confidence. The threshold of unacceptability can be set by individual programmes according to previous local studies of recurrence rates or those from similar settings. Identification of surgeons delivering unacceptably high levels of recurrent TT will guide managers on the need for remedial intervention such as re-training. PMID:20881027

  10. Quality assurance in trichiasis surgery: a methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchan, John C; Limburg, Hans; Burton, Matthew J

    2011-03-01

    Trachoma remains a significant cause of blindness in many parts of the world. The major route to blindness involves upper lid entropion leading to trachomatous trichiasis (TT), which promotes progressive corneal opacification. The provision of surgery to correct TT in the populations most severely affected is a major challenge for the global effort to eliminate trachoma blindness by the year 2020. Most attention has focused on increasing the quantity of TT surgery performed, and large numbers of non-doctor operators have been trained to this end. Surgical audit by those performing TT surgery is not a routine part of any national trachoma control programme, and no effective mechanism exists for identifying surgeons experiencing poor outcomes. The authors propose a methodology for surgical audit at the level of the individual surgeon based on Lot Quality Assurance. A set number of patients operated on previously for upper eyelid TT are examined to detect the recurrence of TT. The number of recurrent cases found will lead to categorisation of the TT surgeon to either 'high recurrence' or 'low recurrence' with reasonable confidence. The threshold of unacceptability can be set by individual programmes according to previous local studies of recurrence rates or those from similar settings. Identification of surgeons delivering unacceptably high levels of recurrent TT will guide managers on the need for remedial intervention such as retraining.

  11. The main aspects of methodology of quality management system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smirnova E.K.

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available this article describes the formation and development of quality management as an integrated system. The author considers the theory and methodology of quality management since the early XXth century to the present day and describes the main problems encountered in the process of quality management system, as well as the ways to overcome them.

  12. Methodology and Supporting Toolset Advancing Embedded Systems Quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berger, Michael Stübert; Soler, José; Brewka, Lukasz Jerzy

    2013-01-01

    Software quality is of primary importance in the development of embedded systems that are often used in safety-critical applications. Moreover, as the life cycle of embedded products becomes increasingly tighter, productivity and quality are simultaneously required and closely interrelated towards...... delivering competitive products. In this context, the MODUS (Methodology and supporting toolset advancing embedded systems quality) project aims to provide a pragmatic and viable solution that will allow SMEs to substantially improve their positioning in the embedded-systems development market. This paper...... will describe the MODUS project with focus on the technical methodologies that will be developed advancing embedded system quality....

  13. Dynamic benchmarking methodology for Quality Function Deployment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Raharjo, H.; Brombacher, A.C.; Chai, K.H.; Bergman, B.

    2008-01-01

    A competitive advantage, generally, can be gained if a firm produces a product that not only addresses what the customer values most, but also performs better than its competitors in terms of quality, cost, and timeliness. However, these two factors, namely, the customer needs and competitorspsila

  14. Methodologies for defining quality of life

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Glicken, J. [Ecological Planning and Toxicology, Inc., Albuquerque, NM (United States); Engi, D. [Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    1996-10-10

    Quality of life as a concept has been used in many ways in the public policy arena. It can be used in summative evaluations to assess the impacts of policies or programs. Alternatively, it can be applied to formative evaluations to provide input to the formation of new policies. In short, it provides the context for the understanding needed to evaluate the results of choices that have been made in the public policy arena, or the potential of choices yet to be made. In either case, the public policy question revolves around the positive or negative impact the choice will have on quality of life, and the magnitude of that impact. This discussion will develop a conceptual framework that proposes that an assessment of quality of life is based on a comparison of expectations with experience. The framework defines four basic components from which these expectations arise: natural conditions, social conditions, the body, and the mind. Each one of these components is generally described, and associated with a general policy or rhetorical category which gives it its policy vocabulary--environmental quality, economic well-being, human health, and self-fulfillment.

  15. A Methodology for Anatomic Ultrasound Image Diagnostic Quality Assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hemmsen, Martin Christian; Lange, Theis; Brandt, Andreas Hjelm

    2017-01-01

    are presented. Earlier uses of the methodology has shown that it ensures validity of the assessment, as it separates the influences between developer, investigator, and assessor once a research protocol has been established. This separation reduces confounding influences on the result from the developer......This paper discusses methods for assessment of ultrasound image quality based on our experiences with evaluating new methods for anatomic imaging. It presents a methodology to ensure a fair assessment between competing imaging methods using clinically relevant evaluations. The methodology...... to properly reveal the clinical value. The paper exemplifies the methodology using recent studies of Synthetic Aperture Sequential Beamforming tissue harmonic imaging....

  16. Chromosome aberration studies and microdosimetry with radiations of varying quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grillmaier, R.E.; Bihy, L.; Menzel, H.G.; Schuhmacher, H.

    1978-01-01

    To investigate the biological effectivity of complex irradiation fields encountered in radiation protection and high LET radiation therapy and to find meaningful specification of radiation quality closely related to the biological effectivity, correlated chromosome aberration studies and microdosimetric investigations have been carried out using cyclotron produced collimated fast neutrons. Human lymphocytes have been irradiated at different dose levels in the direct beam and in different positions in the penumbra and the rates of acentric fragments and dicentrics have been determined. In identical positions microdosimetric measurements have been performed. The dose relationship of aberration rates after irradiation in the direct beam, the aberration rates observed in the penumbra and the microdosimetric quantities ysub(D), ysub(F) and y* are presented and their relations are discussed. Furthermore the dose relationship of chromosome aberrations induced by 60 Co-γ-rays has been investigated and used to establish the RBE dose relationship of cyclotron neutrons

  17. Methodological quality of systematic reviews addressing femoroacetabular impingement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalczuk, Marcin; Adamich, John; Simunovic, Nicole; Farrokhyar, Forough; Ayeni, Olufemi R

    2015-09-01

    As the body of literature on femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) continues to grow, clinicians turn to systematic reviews to remain current with the best available evidence. The quality of systematic reviews in the FAI literature is currently unknown. The goal of this study was to assess the quality of the reporting of systematic reviews addressing FAI over the last 11 years (2003-2014) and to identify the specific methodological shortcomings and strengths. A search of the electronic databases, MEDLINE, EMBASE and PubMed, was performed to identify relevant systematic reviews. Methodological quality was assessed by two reviewers using the revised assessment of multiple systematic reviews (R-AMSTAR) scoring tool. An intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) with 95 % confidence intervals (CI) was used to determine agreement between reviewers on R-AMSTAR quality scores. A total of 22 systematic reviews were assessed for methodological quality. The mean consensus R-AMSTAR score across all studies was 26.7 out of 40.0, indicating fair methodological quality. An ICC of 0.931, 95 % CI 0.843-0.971 indicated excellent agreement between reviewers during the scoring process. The systematic reviews addressing FAI are generally of fair methodological quality. Use of tools such as the R-AMSTAR score or PRISMA guidelines while designing future systematic reviews can assist in eliminating methodological shortcomings identified in this review. These shortcomings need to be kept in mind by clinicians when applying the current literature to their patient populations and making treatment decisions. Systematic reviews of highest methodological quality should be used by clinicians when possible to answer clinical questions.

  18. Measuring the Quality of Publications : New Methodology and Case Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleijnen, J.P.C.; van Groenendaal, W.J.H.

    2000-01-01

    n practice, it is important to evaluate the quality of research, in order to make decisions on tenure, funding, and so on. This article develops a methodology using citations to measure the quality of journals, proceedings, and book publishers. (Citations are also used by the Science and Social

  19. Methodology of quality improvement projects for the Texas Medicare population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendergrass, P W; Abel, R L; Bing, M; Vaughn, R; McCauley, C

    1998-07-01

    The Texas Medical Foundation, the quality improvement organization for the state of Texas, develops local quality improvement projects for the Medicare population. These projects are developed as part of the Health Care Quality Improvement Program undertaken by the Health Care Financing Administration. The goal of a local quality improvement project is to collaborate with providers to identify and reduce the incidence of unintentional variations in the delivery of care that negatively impact outcomes. Two factors are critical to the success of a quality improvement project. First, as opposed to peer review that is based on implicit criteria, quality improvement must be based on explicit criteria. These criteria represent key steps in the delivery of care that have been shown to improve outcomes for a specific disease. Second, quality improvement must be performed in partnership with the health care community. As such, the health care community must play an integral role in the design and evaluation of a quality improvement project and in the design and implementation of the resulting quality improvement plan. Specifically, this article provides a historical perspective for the transition from peer review to quality improvement. It discusses key steps used in developing and implementing local quality improvement projects including topic selection, quality indicator development, collaborator recruitment, and measurement of performance/improvement. Two Texas Medical Foundation projects are described to highlight the current methodology and to illustrate the impact of quality improvement projects.

  20. Methodological Quality of Consensus Guidelines in Implant Dentistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faggion, Clovis Mariano; Apaza, Karol; Ariza-Fritas, Tania; Málaga, Lilian; Giannakopoulos, Nikolaos Nikitas; Alarcón, Marco Antonio

    2017-01-01

    Consensus guidelines are useful to improve clinical decision making. Therefore, the methodological evaluation of these guidelines is of paramount importance. Low quality information may guide to inadequate or harmful clinical decisions. To evaluate the methodological quality of consensus guidelines published in implant dentistry using a validated methodological instrument. The six implant dentistry journals with impact factors were scrutinised for consensus guidelines related to implant dentistry. Two assessors independently selected consensus guidelines, and four assessors independently evaluated their methodological quality using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research & Evaluation (AGREE) II instrument. Disagreements in the selection and evaluation of guidelines were resolved by consensus. First, the consensus guidelines were analysed alone. Then, systematic reviews conducted to support the guidelines were included in the analysis. Non-parametric statistics for dependent variables (Wilcoxon signed rank test) was used to compare both groups. Of 258 initially retrieved articles, 27 consensus guidelines were selected. Median scores in four domains (applicability, rigour of development, stakeholder involvement, and editorial independence), expressed as percentages of maximum possible domain scores, were below 50% (median, 26%, 30.70%, 41.70%, and 41.70%, respectively). The consensus guidelines and consensus guidelines + systematic reviews data sets could be compared for 19 guidelines, and the results showed significant improvements in all domain scores (p dentistry journals is needed. The findings of the present study may help researchers to better develop consensus guidelines in implant dentistry, which will improve the quality and trust of information needed to make proper clinical decisions.

  1. Development of Management Methodology for Engineering Production Quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorlenko, O.; Miroshnikov, V.; Borbatc, N.

    2016-04-01

    The authors of the paper propose four directions of the methodology developing the quality management of engineering products that implement the requirements of new international standard ISO 9001:2015: the analysis of arrangement context taking into account stakeholders, the use of risk management, management of in-house knowledge, assessment of the enterprise activity according to the criteria of effectiveness

  2. Using Quality Tools and Methodologies to Improve a Hospital's Quality Position.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branco, Daniel; Wicks, Angela M; Visich, John K

    2017-01-01

    The authors identify the quality tools and methodologies most frequently used by quality-positioned hospitals versus nonquality hospitals. Northeastern U.S. hospitals in both groups received a brief, 12-question survey. The authors found that 93.75% of the quality hospitals and 81.25% of the nonquality hospitals used some form of process improvement methodologies. However, there were significant differences between the groups regarding the impact of quality improvement initiatives on patients. The findings indicate that in quality hospitals the use of quality improvement initiatives had a significantly greater positive impact on patient satisfaction and patient outcomes when compared to nonquality hospitals.

  3. Organ Donation European Quality System: ODEQUS project methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manyalich, M; Guasch, X; Gomez, M P; Páez, G; Teixeira, L

    2013-01-01

    Differences in the number of organ donors among hospitals cannot be explained only by the number of intensive care unit beds used or neurologic patients treated. The figures obtained are influenced by the organizational structure of the donation process and how efficient it is. The Organ Donation European Quality System (ODEQUS) is a 3-year project (from October 2010 to September 2013) co-financed by the European Agency for Health and Consumers (EAHC20091108) which aims to define a methodology to evaluate organ procurement performance at the hospital level. ODEQUS's specific objectives are to identify quality criteria and to develop quality indicators in three types of organ donation (after brain death, after cardiac death, and living donation). Those tools will be useful for hospitals' self-assessment as well as for developing an international auditing model. A consortium has been established involving 14 associated partners from Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, as well as five collaborating partners from Greece, Hungary, Malta, Slovenia, and Turkey. The project has been established in three steps: 1) Design of a survey about the use of quality tools in a wide sample of European hospitals; 2) Development of quality criteria and quality indicators by the project experts. The main fields considered have been organizational structures, clinical procedures, and outcomes; and 3) Elaboration of an evaluation system to test the quality indicators in 11 European hospitals. Two types of training have been designed and performed: one concerns the development of quality criteria and quality indicators, whereas another is focused on how to use evaluation tools. Following this methodology, the project has so far identified 131 quality criteria and developed 31 quality indicators. Currently, the quality indicators are being tested in 11 selected hospitals. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights

  4. ASSESSMENT OF QUALITY OF LIFE: PRESENT AND FUTURE METHODOLOGICAL CHALLENGES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Benítez

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The growing importance of quality of life in diverse domains, such as health, school performance and social participation, has led to the development of new conceptualisations and assessments of the construct. This diversity of perspectives brings about many benefits, but it also creates an obstacle for the formulation of a single unifying definition of the construct and, therefore, an agreed instrument or assessment framework. The aim of this study is to discuss the current methodological challenges in the measurement of quality of life. Firstly, we provide a brief description of the construct as defined in various areas, then we examine the new methodological developments and different applications. We also present an overview of the different possibilities for future developments in defining and measuring quality of life in national and international studies.

  5. A Quality-Driven Methodology for Information Systems Integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iyad Zikra

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Information systems integration is an essential instrument for organizations to attain advantage in today’s growing and fast changing business and technology landscapes. Integration solutions generate added value by combining the functionality and services of heterogeneous and diverse systems. Existing integration environments tend to rely heavily on technical, platform-dependent skills. Consequently, the solutions that they enable are not optimally aligned with the envisioned business goals of the organization. Furthermore, the gap between the goals and the solutions complicates the task of evaluating the quality of integration solutions. To address these challenges, we propose a quality-driven, model-driven methodology for designing and developing integration solutions. The methodology spans organizational and systems design details, providing a holistic view of the integration solution and its underlying business goals. A multi-view meta-model provides the basis for the integration design. Quality factors that affect various aspects of the integration solution guide and inform the progress of the methodology. An example business case is presented to demonstrate the application of the methodology.

  6. A methodology model for quality management in a general hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Z; Naveh, E

    1997-01-01

    A reappraisal is made of the relevance of industrial modes of quality management to the issues of medical care. Analysis of the nature of medical care, which differentiates it from the supplier-client relationships of industry, presents the main intrinsic characteristics, which create problems in application of the industrial quality management approaches to medical care. Several examples are the complexity of the relationship between the medical action and the result obtained, the client's nonacceptance of economic profitability as a value in his medical care, and customer satisfaction biased by variable standards of knowledge. The real problems unique to hospitals are addressed, and a methodology model for their quality management is offered. Included is a sample of indicator vectors, measurements of quality care, cost of medical care, quality of service, and human resources. These are based on the trilogy of planning quality, quality control, and improving quality. The conclusions confirm the inadequacy of industrial quality management approaches for medical institutions and recommend investment in formulation of appropriate concepts.

  7. QUALITY IMPROVEMENT IN MULTIRESPONSE EXPERIMENTS THROUGH ROBUST DESIGN METHODOLOGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Shilpa

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Robust design methodology aims at reducing the variability in the product performance in the presence of noise factors. Experiments involving simultaneous optimization of more than one quality characteristic are known as multiresponse experiments which are used in the development and improvement of industrial processes and products. In this paper, robust design methodology is applied to optimize the process parameters during a particular operation of rotary driving shaft manufacturing process. The three important quality characteristics of the shaft considered here are of type Nominal-the-best, Smaller-the-better and Fraction defective. Simultaneous optimization of these responses is carried out by identifying the control parameters and conducting the experimentation using L9 orthogonal array.

  8. Methodology for Multileaf Collimator Quality Assurance in clinical conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diaz M, R. M.; Rodriguez Z, M.; Juarez D, A.; Romero R, R.

    2013-01-01

    Multileaf Collimators (MLCs) have become an important technological advance as part of clinical linear accelerators (linacs) for radiotherapy. Treatment planning and delivery were substantially modified after these devices. However, it was needed to develop Quality Assurance (QA) methodologies related to the performance of these developments. The most common methods for QA of MLC are made in basic conditions that hardly cover all possible difficulties in clinical practice. Diaz et. el. developed a methodology based upon volumetric detectors bidimensional arrays that can be extended to more demanding situations. In this work, the Auril methodology of Diaz et. al. was implemented to the irradiation with the linac gantry in horizontal position. A mathematical procedure was developed to ease the dosimetric centering of the device with the Auril centering tool. System calibration was made as in the typical Auril methodology. Patterns with leaf misplacements in known positions were irradiated. the method allowed the detection of leafs' misplacements with a minimum number of false positives. We concluded that Auril methodology can be applied in clinical conditions. (Author)

  9. The ABT methodology employment for VET of quality auditors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liviu Moldovan

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents some achievements of the project entitled “Disseminating Open and Innovative Tools and Services for Vocational Education and Training in Quality Assurance” (acronym Do-IT financed by European Commission. The recent developments and results obtained during pilot testing of new pedagogical models and services, in Do-IT project, targeting engineering education in Romania are presented. This include the activity Based Training methodology (ABT for quality management system audit course according to ISO 19011 and ISO 9001 and evaluation of theoretical achievements with Student Response System (SRS.

  10. Methodology for stereoscopic motion-picture quality assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voronov, Alexander; Vatolin, Dmitriy; Sumin, Denis; Napadovsky, Vyacheslav; Borisov, Alexey

    2013-03-01

    Creating and processing stereoscopic video imposes additional quality requirements related to view synchronization. In this work we propose a set of algorithms for detecting typical stereoscopic-video problems, which appear owing to imprecise setup of capture equipment or incorrect postprocessing. We developed a methodology for analyzing the quality of S3D motion pictures and for revealing their most problematic scenes. We then processed 10 modern stereo films, including Avatar, Resident Evil: Afterlife and Hugo, and analyzed changes in S3D-film quality over the years. This work presents real examples of common artifacts (color and sharpness mismatch, vertical disparity and excessive horizontal disparity) in the motion pictures we processed, as well as possible solutions for each problem. Our results enable improved quality assessment during the filming and postproduction stages.

  11. Measurement of Quality of Life I. A Methodological Framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soren Ventegodt

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the widespread acceptance of quality of life (QOL as the ideal guideline in healthcare and clinical research, serious conceptual and methodological problems continue to plague this area. In an attempt to remedy this situation, we propose seven criteria that a quality-of-life concept must meet to provide a sound basis for investigation by questionnaire. The seven criteria or desiderata are: (1 an explicit definition of quality of life; (2 a coherent philosophy of human life from which the definition is derived; (3 a theory that operationalizes the philosophy by specifying unambiguous, nonoverlapping, and jointly exhaustive questionnaire items; (4 response alternatives that permit a fraction-scale interpretation; (5 technical checks of reproducibility; (6 meaningfulness to investigators, respondents, and users; and (7 an overall aesthetic appeal of the questionnaire. These criteria have guided the design of a validated 5-item generic, global quality-of-life questionnaire (QOL5, and a validated 317-item generic, global quality-of-life questionnaire (SEQOL, administered to a well-documented birth cohort of 7,400 Danes born in 1959�1961, as well as to a reference sample of 2,500 Danes. Presented in outline, the underlying integrative quality-of-life (IQOL theory is a meta-theory. To illustrate the seven criteria at work, we show the extent to which they are satisfied by one of the eight component theories. Next, two sample results of our investigation are presented: satisfaction with one's sex life has the expected covariation with one's quality of life, and so does mother's smoking during pregnancy, albeit to a much smaller extent. It is concluded that the methodological framework presented has proved helpful in designing a questionnaire that is capable of yielding acceptably valid and reliable measurements of global and generic quality of life.

  12. Methodological Quality Assessment of Meta-analyses in Endodontics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kattan, Sereen; Lee, Su-Min; Kohli, Meetu R; Setzer, Frank C; Karabucak, Bekir

    2018-01-01

    The objectives of this review were to assess the methodological quality of published meta-analyses related to endodontics using the assessment of multiple systematic reviews (AMSTAR) tool and to provide a follow-up to previously published reviews. Three electronic databases were searched for eligible studies according to the inclusion and exclusion criteria: Embase via Ovid, The Cochrane Library, and Scopus. The electronic search was amended by a hand search of 6 dental journals (International Endodontic Journal; Journal of Endodontics; Australian Endodontic Journal; Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology, Oral Radiology; Endodontics and Dental Traumatology; and Journal of Dental Research). The searches were conducted to include articles published after July 2009, and the deadline for inclusion of the meta-analyses was November 30, 2016. The AMSTAR assessment tool was used to evaluate the methodological quality of all included studies. A total of 36 reports of meta-analyses were included. The overall quality of the meta-analyses reports was found to be medium, with an estimated mean overall AMSTAR score of 7.25 (95% confidence interval, 6.59-7.90). The most poorly assessed areas were providing an a priori design, the assessment of the status of publication, and publication bias. In recent publications in the field of endodontics, the overall quality of the reported meta-analyses is medium according to AMSTAR. Copyright © 2017 American Association of Endodontists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Scale effects on spatially varying relationships between urban landscape patterns and water quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yanwei; Guo, Qinghai; Liu, Jian; Wang, Run

    2014-08-01

    Scientific interpretation of the relationships between urban landscape patterns and water quality is important for sustainable urban planning and watershed environmental protection. This study applied the ordinary least squares regression model and the geographically weighted regression model to examine the spatially varying relationships between 12 explanatory variables (including three topographical factors, four land use parameters, and five landscape metrics) and 15 water quality indicators in watersheds of Yundang Lake, Maluan Bay, and Xinglin Bay with varying levels of urbanization in Xiamen City, China. A local and global investigation was carried out at the watershed-level, with 50 and 200 m riparian buffer scales. This study found that topographical features and landscape metrics are the dominant factors of water quality, while land uses are too weak to be considered as a strong influential factor on water quality. Such statistical results may be related with the characteristics of land use compositions in our study area. Water quality variations in the 50 m buffer were dominated by topographical variables. The impact of landscape metrics on water quality gradually strengthen with expanding buffer zones. The strongest relationships are obtained in entire watersheds, rather than in 50 and 200 m buffer zones. Spatially varying relationships and effective buffer zones were verified in this study. Spatially varying relationships between explanatory variables and water quality parameters are more diversified and complex in less urbanized areas than in highly urbanized areas. This study hypothesizes that all these varying relationships may be attributed to the heterogeneity of landscape patterns in different urban regions. Adjustment of landscape patterns in an entire watershed should be the key measure to successfully improving urban lake water quality.

  14. Quality control of CT units - methodology of performance I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prlic, I.; Radalj, Z.

    1996-01-01

    Increasing use of x-ray computed tomography systems (CT scanners) in the diagnostic requires an efficient means of evaluating the performance of them. Therefore, this paper presents the way to measure (Quality Control procedure-Q/C) and define the CT scanner performance through a special phantom which is based on the recommendation of the American association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM). The performance parameters measurable with the phantom represent the capability, so periodical evaluation of the parameters enable the users to recognize the stability of the CT scanner no matter on the manufacturer, model or software option of the scanner. There are five important performance parameters which are to be measured: Noise, Contrast scale, Nominal tomographic section thickness, High and Low contrast resolution (MTF). The sixth parameter is, of course the dose per scan and slice which gives the patient dose for the certain diagnostic procedure. The last but not the least parameter is the final image quality which is given through the image processing device connected to the scanner. This is the final medical information needed for the good medical practice according to the Quality Assurance (Q/A) procedures in diagnostic radiology. We have to assure the results of the performance evaluation without environmental influences (the measurements are to be made under the certain conditions according Q/A). This paper will give no detailed methodology recipe but will show on the one example; the system noise measurements and linearity; the need and relevant results of the measurements.1 The rest of the methodology is to be published. (author)

  15. Constructing Regional Groundwater Models from Geophysical Data of Varying Type, Age, and Quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vest Christiansen, Anders; Auken, Esben; Marker, Pernille Aabye

    for parameterization of a 3D model of the subsurface, integrating lithological information from boreholes with resistivity models. The objective is to create a direct input to regional groundwater models for sedimentary areas, where the sand/clay distribution governs the groundwater flow. The resistivity input is all......-inclusive in the sense that we include data from a variety of instruments (DC and EM, ground-based and airborne), with a varying spatial density and varying ages and quality. The coupling between hydrological and geophysical parameters is managed using a translator function with spatially variable parameters, which...

  16. Modeling the time--varying subjective quality of HTTP video streams with rate adaptations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chao; Choi, Lark Kwon; de Veciana, Gustavo; Caramanis, Constantine; Heath, Robert W; Bovik, Alan C

    2014-05-01

    Newly developed hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP)-based video streaming technologies enable flexible rate-adaptation under varying channel conditions. Accurately predicting the users' quality of experience (QoE) for rate-adaptive HTTP video streams is thus critical to achieve efficiency. An important aspect of understanding and modeling QoE is predicting the up-to-the-moment subjective quality of a video as it is played, which is difficult due to hysteresis effects and nonlinearities in human behavioral responses. This paper presents a Hammerstein-Wiener model for predicting the time-varying subjective quality (TVSQ) of rate-adaptive videos. To collect data for model parameterization and validation, a database of longer duration videos with time-varying distortions was built and the TVSQs of the videos were measured in a large-scale subjective study. The proposed method is able to reliably predict the TVSQ of rate adaptive videos. Since the Hammerstein-Wiener model has a very simple structure, the proposed method is suitable for online TVSQ prediction in HTTP-based streaming.

  17. The economic valuation of environmental quality: A methodological study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sung Yucsheng.

    1991-01-01

    Conducted in the context of sportfishing, this study uses Michigan data to estimate fishing demand and resulting consumer surplus accruing from environmental-policy implementation. For the modeling of fish-species and site decisions, a nested multinomial logit model is employed. On a pre-determined choice occasion during which a trip of a specific duration will be taken, an angler is assumed first to make a fish-species decision, then choose a site. The seasonal-participation decision is modeled by a competing-risks stochastic renewal process, incorporating time-varying parameters to account for changes in site quality through time. Since the number of trips would most likely change after a potential site-quality improvement, the proposed seasonal compensating variation (CV) calculation takes into account (1) the CV associated with the trips that would have been taken before the quality improvement, and (2) the CV associated with the new trips. The approach proposed in this study is applied to two real world policy scenarios: The termination of the Ludington Pumped Storage plant operation, and the removal of PCB contamination in the Kalamazoo River. The compensating variation is derived for both applications

  18. Sight or scent: lemur sensory reliance in detecting food quality varies with feeding ecology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie Rushmore

    Full Text Available Visual and olfactory cues provide important information to foragers, yet we know little about species differences in sensory reliance during food selection. In a series of experimental foraging studies, we examined the relative reliance on vision versus olfaction in three diurnal, primate species with diverse feeding ecologies, including folivorous Coquerel's sifakas (Propithecus coquereli, frugivorous ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata spp, and generalist ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta. We used animals with known color-vision status and foods for which different maturation stages (and hence quality produce distinct visual and olfactory cues (the latter determined chemically. We first showed that lemurs preferentially selected high-quality foods over low-quality foods when visual and olfactory cues were simultaneously available for both food types. Next, using a novel apparatus in a series of discrimination trials, we either manipulated food quality (while holding sensory cues constant or manipulated sensory cues (while holding food quality constant. Among our study subjects that showed relatively strong preferences for high-quality foods, folivores required both sensory cues combined to reliably identify their preferred foods, whereas generalists could identify their preferred foods using either cue alone, and frugivores could identify their preferred foods using olfactory, but not visual, cues alone. Moreover, when only high-quality foods were available, folivores and generalists used visual rather than olfactory cues to select food, whereas frugivores used both cue types equally. Lastly, individuals in all three of the study species predominantly relied on sight when choosing between low-quality foods, but species differed in the strength of their sensory biases. Our results generally emphasize visual over olfactory reliance in foraging lemurs, but we suggest that the relative sensory reliance of animals may vary with their feeding ecology.

  19. Cesarean Delivery Rates Vary 10-Fold Among US Hospitals; Reducing Variation May Address Quality, Cost Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozhimannil, Katy Backes; Law, Michael R.; Virnig, Beth A.

    2013-01-01

    Cesarean delivery is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the United States, and cesarean rates are increasing. Working with 2009 data from 593 US hospitals nationwide, we found that cesarean rates varied tenfold across hospitals, from 7.1 percent to 69.9 percent. Even for women with lower-risk pregnancies, in which more limited variation might be expected, cesarean rates varied fifteen-fold, from 2.4 percent to 36.5 percent. Thus, vast differences in practice patterns are likely to be driving the costly overuse of cesarean delivery in many US hospitals. Because Medicaid pays for nearly half of US births, government efforts to decrease variation are warranted. We focus on four promising directions for reducing these variations, including better coordination of maternity care, more data collection and measurement, tying Medicaid payment to quality improvement, and enhancing patient-centered decision making through public reporting. PMID:23459732

  20. Research on quality assurance classification methodology for domestic AP1000 nuclear power projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bai Jinhua; Jiang Huijie; Li Jingyan

    2012-01-01

    To meet the quality assurance classification requirements of domestic nuclear safety codes and standards, this paper analyzes the quality assurance classification methodology of domestic AP1000 nuclear power projects at present, and proposes the quality assurance classification methodology for subsequent AP1000 nuclear power projects. (authors)

  1. Report on use of a methodology for commissioning and quality assurance of a VMAT system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles Mayo

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Results of use of methodology for VMAT commissioning and quality assurance, utilizing both control point tests and dosimetric measurements are presented. METHODS AND MATERIALS: A generalizable, phantom measurement approach is used to characterize the accuracy of the measurement system. Correction for angular response of the measurement system and inclusion of couch structures are used to characterize the full range gantry angles desirable for clinical plans. A dose based daily QA measurement approach is defined. RESULTS: Agreement in the static vs. VMAT picket fence control point test was better than 0.5 mm. Control point tests varying gantry rotation speed, leaf speed and dose rate, demonstrated agreement with predicted values better than 1%. Angular dependence of the MatriXX array, varied over a range of 0.94-1.06, with respect to the calibration condition. Phantom measurements demonstrated central axis dose accuracy for un-modulated four field box plans was ≥2.5% vs. 1% with and without angular correction respectively with better results for VMAT (0.4% vs. IMRT (1.6% plans. Daily QA results demonstrated average agreement all three chambers within 0.4% over 9 month period with no false positives at a 3% threshold. DISCUSSION: The methodology described is simple in design and characterizes both the inherit limitations of the measurement system as well at the dose based measurements that may be directly related to patient plan QA.

  2. Applying Statistical Process Quality Control Methodology to Educational Settings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Carol Joyce

    A subset of Statistical Process Control (SPC) methodology known as Control Charting is introduced. SPC methodology is a collection of graphical and inferential statistics techniques used to study the progress of phenomena over time. The types of control charts covered are the null X (mean), R (Range), X (individual observations), MR (moving…

  3. Economic evaluations of occupational health interventions from a corporate perspective - A systematic review of methodological quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uegaki, K.; Bruijne, M.C. de; Lambeek, L.; Anema, J.R.; Beek, A.J. van der; Mechelen, W. van; Tulder, M.W. van

    2010-01-01

    Objective: Using a standardized quality criteria list, we appraised the methodological quality of economic evaluations of occupational safety and health (OSH) interventions conducted from a corporate perspective. Methods: The primary literature search was conducted in Medline and Embase.

  4. A time-varying subjective quality model for mobile streaming videos with stalling events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghadiyaram, Deepti; Pan, Janice; Bovik, Alan C.

    2015-09-01

    Over-the-top mobile video streaming is invariably influenced by volatile network conditions which cause playback interruptions (stalling events), thereby impairing users' quality of experience (QoE). Developing models that can accurately predict users' QoE could enable the more efficient design of quality-control protocols for video streaming networks that reduce network operational costs while still delivering high-quality video content to the customers. Existing objective models that predict QoE are based on global video features, such as the number of stall events and their lengths, and are trained and validated on a small pool of ad hoc video datasets, most of which are not publicly available. The model we propose in this work goes beyond previous models as it also accounts for the fundamental effect that a viewer's recent level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction has on their overall viewing experience. In other words, the proposed model accounts for and adapts to the recency, or hysteresis effect caused by a stall event in addition to accounting for the lengths, frequency of occurrence, and the positions of stall events - factors that interact in a complex way to affect a user's QoE. On the recently introduced LIVE-Avvasi Mobile Video Database, which consists of 180 distorted videos of varied content that are afflicted solely with over 25 unique realistic stalling events, we trained and validated our model to accurately predict the QoE, attaining standout QoE prediction performance.

  5. Quality assurance of Vari-source high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy- remote after loader and cost effectiveness of Vari-source HDR- brachytherapy: NORI, Islamabad experience

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahmad, N.; Mahmood, H.; Jafri, S.R.A.

    2004-01-01

    A quality control of Vari-Source high dose rate (HDR) remote after loading brachytherapy machine was carried out and the cost effectiveness of HDR brachytherapy machine was also evaluated considering the cost of ten Iridium-192 wire sources at Nuclear Medicine, Oncology and Radiotherapy Institute (NORI), Islamabad, Pakistan. A total number of 253 intracavitary insertions were done in 98 patients from October 1996 to May 2001. The results of the quality control tests performed during 1996 to 2001 were within the acceptable limits. The cost effectiveness of Vari-Source HDR brachytherapy machine was also evaluated. The average cost per patient was calculated as US$ 491. Small number of patients was treated as the machine was used for gynecologic malignancies only. The objective was to assess the quality control status of HDR brachytherapy machine on patient treatment day, source exchange day and periodic day (monthly basis). It was found that the cost per patient can be minimized if other type of cancer patients are also treated on Vari-Source HDR machine. (author)

  6. Methodological quality and scientific impact of quantitative nursing education research over 18 months.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yucha, Carolyn B; Schneider, Barbara St Pierre; Smyer, Tish; Kowalski, Susan; Stowers, Eva

    2011-01-01

    The methodological quality of nursing education research has not been rigorously studied. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the methodological quality and scientific impact of nursing education research reports. The methodological quality of 133 quantitative nursing education research articles published between July 2006 and December 2007 was evaluated using the Medical Education Research Study Quality Instrument (MERSQI).The mean (+/- SD) MERSQI score was 9.8 +/- 2.2. It correlated (p nursing literature and those reported for the medical literature, coupled with the association with citation counts, suggest that the MERSQI is an appropriate instrument to evaluate the quality of nursing education research.

  7. Investigation Of Infrared Drying Behaviour Of Spinach Leaves Using ANN Methodology And Dried Product Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarimeseli Ayse

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Effects of infrared power output and sample mass on drying behaviour, colour parameters, ascorbic acid degradation, rehydration characteristics and some sensory scores of spinach leaves were investigated. Within both of the range of the infrared power outputs, 300–500 W, and sample amounts, 15–60 g, moisture content of the leaves was reduced from 6.0 to 0.1±(0.01 kg water/kg dry base value. It was recorded that drying times of the spinach leaves varied between 3.5–10 min for constant sample amount, and 4–16.5 min for constant power output. Experimental drying data obtained were successfully investigated by using artificial neural network methodology. Some changes were recorded in the quality parameters of the dried leaves, and acceptable sensory scores for the dried leaves were observed in all of the experimental conditions.

  8. An objective methodology for the evaluation of the air quality stations positioning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benassi, A.; Marson, G.; Baraldo, E.; Dalan, F.; Lorenzet, K.; Bellasio, R.; Bianconi, R.

    2006-01-01

    This work describes a methodology for the evaluation of the correct positioning of the monitoring stations of an air quality network. The methodology is based on the Italian legislation, the European Directives and on some technical documents used as guidelines at European level. The paper describes all the assumption on which the methodology is based and the results of its application to the air quality network of Region Veneto (Italy) [it

  9. On-Line Flutter Prediction Tool for Wind Tunnel Flutter Testing using Parameter Varying Estimation Methodology, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ZONA Technology, Inc. (ZONA) proposes to develop an on-line flutter prediction tool for wind tunnel model using the parameter varying estimation (PVE) technique to...

  10. Welding quality evaluation of resistance spot welding using the time-varying inductive reactance signal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hongjie; Hou, Yanyan; Yang, Tao; Zhang, Qian; Zhao, Jian

    2018-05-01

    In the spot welding process, a high alternating current is applied, resulting in a time-varying electromagnetic field surrounding the welder. When measuring the welding voltage signal, the impedance of the measuring circuit consists of two parts: dynamic resistance relating to weld nugget nucleation event and inductive reactance caused by mutual inductance. The aim of this study is to develop a method to acquire the dynamic reactance signal and to discuss the possibility of using this signal to evaluate the weld quality. For this purpose, a series of experiments were carried out. The reactance signals under different welding conditions were compared and the results showed that the morphological feature of the reactance signal was closely related to the welding current and it was also significantly influenced by some abnormal welding conditions. Some features were extracted from the reactance signal and combined to construct weld nugget strength and diameter prediction models based on the radial basis function (RBF) neural network. In addition, several features were also used to monitor the expulsion in the welding process by using Fisher linear discriminant analysis. The results indicated that using the dynamic reactance signal to evaluate weld quality is possible and feasible.

  11. OpenKnowledge Deliverable 3.3.: A methodology for ontology matching quality evaluation

    OpenAIRE

    Yatskevich, Mikalai; Giunchiglia, Fausto; McNeill, Fiona; Shvaiko, Pavel

    2007-01-01

    This document presents an evaluation methodology for the assessment of quality results produced by ontology matchers. In particular, it discusses: (i) several standard quality measures used in the ontology matching evaluation, (ii) a methodology of how to build semiautomatically an incomplete reference alignment allowing for the assessment of quality results produced by ontology matchers and (iii) a preliminary empirical evaluation of the OpenKnowledge ontology matching component.

  12. The development of a checklist to enhance methodological quality in intervention programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvador Chacón-Moscoso

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The methodological quality of primary studies is an important issue when performing meta-analyses or systematic reviews. Nevertheless, there are no clear criteria for how methodological quality should be analyzed. Controversies emerge when considering the various theoretical and empirical definitions, especially in relation to three interrelated problems: the lack of representativeness, utility, and feasibility. In this article, we (a systematize and summarize the available literature about methodological quality in primary studies; (b propose a specific, parsimonious, 12-item checklist to empirically define the methodological quality of primary studies based on a content validity study; and (c present an inter-coder reliability study for the resulting 12 items. This paper provides a precise and rigorous description of the development of this checklist, highlighting the clearly specified criteria for the inclusion of items and a substantial inter-coder agreement in the different items. Rather than simply proposing another checklist, however, it then argues that the list constitutes an assessment tool with respect to the representativeness, utility, and feasibility of the most frequent methodological quality items in the literature, one that provides practitioners and researchers with clear criteria for choosing items that may be adequate to their needs. We propose individual methodological features as indicators of quality, arguing that these need to be taken into account when designing, implementing, or evaluating an intervention program. This enhances methodological quality of intervention programs and fosters the cumulative knowledge based on meta-analyses of these interventions. Future development of the checklist is discussed.

  13. Methodology for Evaluating Quality and Reusability of Learning Objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurilovas, Eugenijus; Bireniene, Virginija; Serikoviene, Silvija

    2011-01-01

    The aim of the paper is to present the scientific model and several methods for the expert evaluation of quality of learning objects (LOs) paying especial attention to LOs reusability level. The activities of eQNet Quality Network for a European Learning Resource Exchange (LRE) aimed to improve reusability of LOs of European Schoolnet's LRE…

  14. Dictionary quality and dictionary design: a methodology for ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Although recent dictionaries for the ESL market have been praised for their innovative design features, the prime concern of users, lexicographers and metalexicographers is the functional quality of the dictionary products provided for the market. The functional quality of dictionaries and the scientific assessment thereof ...

  15. Spatially-varying surface roughness and ground-level air quality in an operational dispersion model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barnes, M.J.; Brade, T.K.; MacKenzie, A.R.; Whyatt, J.D.; Carruthers, D.J.; Stocker, J.; Cai, X.; Hewitt, C.N.

    2014-01-01

    Urban form controls the overall aerodynamic roughness of a city, and hence plays a significant role in how air flow interacts with the urban landscape. This paper reports improved model performance resulting from the introduction of variable surface roughness in the operational air-quality model ADMS-Urban (v3.1). We then assess to what extent pollutant concentrations can be reduced solely through local reductions in roughness. The model results suggest that reducing surface roughness in a city centre can increase ground-level pollutant concentrations, both locally in the area of reduced roughness and downwind of that area. The unexpected simulation of increased ground-level pollutant concentrations implies that this type of modelling should be used with caution for urban planning and design studies looking at ventilation of pollution. We expect the results from this study to be relevant for all atmospheric dispersion models with urban-surface parameterisations based on roughness. -- Highlights: • Spatially variable roughness improved performance of an operational model. • Scenario modelling explored effect of reduced roughness on air pollution. • Reducing surface roughness can increase modelled ground-level pollution. • Damped vertical mixing outweighs increased horizontal advection in model study. • Result should hold for any model with a land-surface coupling based on roughness. -- Spatially varying roughness improves model simulations of urban air pollutant dispersion. Reducing roughness does not always decrease ground-level pollution concentrations

  16. A food quality management research methodology integrating technological and managerial theories

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luning, P.A.; Marcelis, W.J.

    2009-01-01

    In this article it is argued how the complexity of food quality management combined with the high requirements on food quality requires a specific research methodology. It is concluded that food quality management research has to deal with two quite different paradigms, the one from technological

  17. The Statistical point of view of Quality: the Lean Six Sigma methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertolaccini, Luca; Viti, Andrea; Terzi, Alberto

    2015-04-01

    Six Sigma and Lean are two quality improvement methodologies. The Lean Six Sigma methodology is applicable to repetitive procedures. Therefore, the use of this methodology in the health-care arena has focused mainly on areas of business operations, throughput, and case management and has focused on efficiency outcomes. After the revision of methodology, the paper presents a brief clinical example of the use of Lean Six Sigma as a quality improvement method in the reduction of the complications during and after lobectomies. Using Lean Six Sigma methodology, the multidisciplinary teams could identify multiple modifiable points across the surgical process. These process improvements could be applied to different surgical specialties and could result in a measurement, from statistical point of view, of the surgical quality.

  18. Improving the Quality of Experience Journals: Training Educational Psychology Students in Basic Qualitative Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds-Keefer, Laura

    2010-01-01

    This study evaluates the impact of teaching basic qualitative methodology to preservice teachers enrolled in an educational psychology course in the quality of observation journals. Preservice teachers enrolled in an educational psychology course requiring 45 hr of field experience were given qualitative methodological training as a part of the…

  19. Methodological and reporting quality in laboratory studies of human eating behavior

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Robinson, E.; Bevelander, K.E.; Field, M.; Jones, A.

    2018-01-01

    The methodological quality and reporting practices of laboratory studies of human eating behavior determine the validity and replicability of nutrition science. The aim of this research was to examine basic methodology and reporting practices in recent representative laboratory studies of human

  20. Automatic ECG quality scoring methodology: mimicking human annotators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johannesen, Lars; Galeotti, Loriano

    2012-01-01

    An algorithm to determine the quality of electrocardiograms (ECGs) can enable inexperienced nurses and paramedics to record ECGs of sufficient diagnostic quality. Previously, we proposed an algorithm for determining if ECG recordings are of acceptable quality, which was entered in the PhysioNet Challenge 2011. In the present work, we propose an improved two-step algorithm, which first rejects ECGs with macroscopic errors (signal absent, large voltage shifts or saturation) and subsequently quantifies the noise (baseline, powerline or muscular noise) on a continuous scale. The performance of the improved algorithm was evaluated using the PhysioNet Challenge database (1500 ECGs rated by humans for signal quality). We achieved a classification accuracy of 92.3% on the training set and 90.0% on the test set. The improved algorithm is capable of detecting ECGs with macroscopic errors and giving the user a score of the overall quality. This allows the user to assess the degree of noise and decide if it is acceptable depending on the purpose of the recording. (paper)

  1. Economic evaluation studies in reproductive medicine: a systematic review of methodologic quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moolenaar, Lobke M.; Vijgen, Sylvia M. C.; Hompes, Peter; van der Veen, Fulco; Mol, Ben Willem J.; Opmeer, Brent C.

    2013-01-01

    To evaluate the methodologic quality of economic analyses published in the field of reproductive medicine. Systematic review. Centers for reproductive care. Infertility patients. We performed a Medline search to identify economic evaluation studies in reproductive medicine. We included studies that

  2. A methodology of healthcare quality measurement: a case study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pecoraro, F; Luzi, D; Federico II, Naples (Italy))" data-affiliation=" (Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology and Interuniversity Centre of Bioengineering of the Human Neuromusculoskeletal System, University of Naples, Federico II, Naples (Italy))" >Cesarelli, M; Clemente, F

    2015-01-01

    In this paper we present a comprehensive model for quality assessment taking into account structure, process and outcome dimensions introduced in the Donabedian framework. To test our hypothesis a case study based on the Italian healthcare services is reported focusing on the analysis of the hospital bed management and on the phenomenon of both active and passive patient mobility

  3. Measurement of quality of life I. A methodological framework

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ventegodt, Søren; Hilden, Jørgen; Merrick, Joav

    2003-01-01

    meet to provide a sound basis for investigation by questionnaire. The seven criteria or desiderata are: (1) an explicit definition of quality of life; (2) a coherent philosophy of human life from which the definition is derived; (3) a theory that operationalizes the philosophy by specifying unambiguous...

  4. Terminology and methodology in modelling for water quality management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carstensen, J.; Vanrolleghem, P.; Rauch, W.

    1997-01-01

    There is a widespread need for a common terminology in modelling for water quality management. This paper points out sources of confusion in the communication between researchers due to misuse of existing terminology or use of unclear terminology. The paper attempts to clarify the context...... of the most widely used terms for characterising models and within the process of model building. It is essential to the ever growing society of researchers within water quality management, that communication is eased by establishing a common terminology. This should not be done by giving broader definitions...... of the terms, but by stressing the use of a stringent terminology. Therefore, the goal of the paper is to advocate the use of such a well defined and clear terminology. (C) 1997 IAWQ. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd....

  5. KAIZEN METHODOLOGY IN QUALITY MANAGEMENT TO REDUCE WASTES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boca Gratiela Dana

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Kaizen cannot deal with all problems and one size does not fit all but a flexibleimplementation opens up the dimension of collaboration between the workforce, themanagement and the technical departments. In every company, it operates in a differentway to suit the circumstances but all consider it indispensable. It is more flexible andtolerant than may be expected; it is a tool for integration of technological strategy with thebusiness strategy of the organization. Technology is forcing organizations to become morecompetitive as at every instance innovations take place. Recent innovations in the form oftotal quality management, reengineering work process, flexible manufacturing system haveonly one thing in common - well serving the customer by improved operational efficiency.For instant Quality Management advocates emphasize the importance of achieving higherquality and flexibility at lower level of cost and waste.

  6. [Methodological quality and reporting quality evaluation of randomized controlled trials published in China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Dan-Dan; Xie, Yan-Ming; Liao, Xing; Zhi, Ying-Jie; Jiang, Jun-Jie; Chen, Wei

    2018-02-01

    To evaluate the methodological quality and reporting quality of randomized controlled trials(RCTs) published in China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica, we searched CNKI and China Journal of Chinese Materia webpage to collect RCTs since the establishment of the magazine. The Cochrane risk of bias assessment tool was used to evaluate the methodological quality of RCTs. The CONSORT 2010 list was adopted as reporting quality evaluating tool. Finally, 184 RCTs were included and evaluated methodologically, of which 97 RCTs were evaluated with reporting quality. For the methodological evaluating, 62 trials(33.70%) reported the random sequence generation; 9(4.89%) trials reported the allocation concealment; 25(13.59%) trials adopted the method of blinding; 30(16.30%) trials reported the number of patients withdrawing, dropping out and those lost to follow-up;2 trials (1.09%) reported trial registration and none of the trial reported the trial protocol; only 8(4.35%) trials reported the sample size estimation in details. For reporting quality appraising, 3 reporting items of 25 items were evaluated with high-quality,including: abstract, participants qualified criteria, and statistical methods; 4 reporting items with medium-quality, including purpose, intervention, random sequence method, and data collection of sites and locations; 9 items with low-quality reporting items including title, backgrounds, random sequence types, allocation concealment, blindness, recruitment of subjects, baseline data, harms, and funding;the rest of items were of extremely low quality(the compliance rate of reporting item<10%). On the whole, the methodological and reporting quality of RCTs published in the magazine are generally low. Further improvement in both methodological and reporting quality for RCTs of traditional Chinese medicine are warranted. It is recommended that the international standards and procedures for RCT design should be strictly followed to conduct high-quality trials

  7. Impact Evaluation of Quality Assurance in Higher Education: Methodology and Causal Designs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leiber, Theodor; Stensaker, Bjørn; Harvey, Lee

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, the theoretical perspectives and general methodological elements of impact evaluation of quality assurance in higher education institutions are discussed, which should be a cornerstone of quality development in higher education and contribute to improving the knowledge about the effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of quality…

  8. Quality Assurance and Its Impact from Higher Education Institutions' Perspectives: Methodological Approaches, Experiences and Expectations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bejan, Stelian Andrei; Janatuinen, Tero; Jurvelin, Jouni; Klöpping, Susanne; Malinen, Heikki; Minke, Bernhard; Vacareanu, Radu

    2015-01-01

    This paper reports on methodological approaches, experiences and expectations referring to impact analysis of quality assurance from the perspective of three higher education institutions (students, teaching staff, quality managers) from Germany, Finland and Romania. The presentations of the three sample institutions focus on discussing the core…

  9. Methodology of clinical measures of healthcare quality delivered to patients with cardiovascular diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Posnenkova O.M.

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The results of implementation the methodology proposed by American Colleague of Cardiology and American Heart Association (ACC/AHA for development of Russian clinical quality measures for patients with arterial hypertension, coronary heart disease and chronic heart failure. Created quality measures cover the key elements of medical care influencing directly on clinical outcomes of treatment.

  10. Methodological Validation of Quality of Life Questionnaire for Coal Mining Groups-Indian Scenario

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sen, Sayanti; Sen, Goutam; Tewary, B. K.

    2012-01-01

    Maslow's hierarchy-of-needs theory has been used to predict development of Quality of Life (QOL) in countries over time. In this paper an attempt has been taken to derive a methodological validation of quality of life questionnaire which have been prepared for the study area. The objective of the study is to standardize a questionnaire tool to…

  11. Dosimetric quality control in radiotherapy using TLD methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saravi, M.C.; Kessler, C.; Alvarez, P.E.; Feld, D.B.

    2002-01-01

    In the frame of the IAEA Co-ordinated Research Project 'Development of a Quality Assurance Program for Radiation Therapy Dosimetry in Developing Countries' a Dosimetric Quality Control Group was set up in Argentina in 1996, to develop a program in order to improve radiotherapy in the country. Nowadays, this Group, briefly called External Audit Group (EAG), is composed by the national Secondary Standard Dosimetry Laboratory (SSDL), which has the responsibility for dose determinations, traceability to international dosimetry chain and TLD measurements, and two Medical Physicists from CNEA who are working at the Oncology Hospital 'Marie Curie' in Buenos Aires. The present paper reports the activities performed by the EAG with external high energy photon beams in reference conditions and the results of two pilot studies on cobalt 60 beams in non-reference conditions. The first step of the program was to update the existing data base about the radiotherapy centres operating in the country. A form was sent to each of them in order to obtain basic information about their staff, number and type of treatment machines, brachytherapy sources, measuring devices, beam calibration, treatment planning system, simulator and other relevant data. 90 radiotherapy centres were registered in the EAG data base. Forms were completed by 75/90 centres. There are nowadays 69 cobalt 60 units and 42 LINACs operating in the country (18/42 LINACs producing high energy X ray and electron beams). EAG deals with measurements performed with mailed TLD irradiated at radiotherapy centres. Internal quality control on our TLD system is made during each audit by means of reference capsules irradiated by IAEA; external controls consist in blind tests performed by IAEA once a year. The correction factor, K en , determined at our SSDL for high energy X-rays was checked with the collaboration of IAEA and Prague National Radiation Protection Institute (PNRPI) by means of a blind test. Results for 4 MV, 6 MV

  12. The relationship between return on investment and quality of study methodology in workplace health promotion programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baxter, Siyan; Sanderson, Kristy; Venn, Alison J; Blizzard, C Leigh; Palmer, Andrew J

    2014-01-01

    To determine the relationship between return on investment (ROI) and quality of study methodology in workplace health promotion programs. Data were obtained through a systematic literature search of National Health Service Economic Evaluation Database (NHS EED), Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE), Health Technology Database (HTA), Cost Effectiveness Analysis (CEA) Registry, EconLit, PubMed, Embase, Wiley, and Scopus. Included were articles written in English or German reporting cost(s) and benefit(s) and single or multicomponent health promotion programs on working adults. Return-to-work and workplace injury prevention studies were excluded. Methodological quality was graded using British Medical Journal Economic Evaluation Working Party checklist. Economic outcomes were presented as ROI. ROI was calculated as ROI = (benefits - costs of program)/costs of program. Results were weighted by study size and combined using meta-analysis techniques. Sensitivity analysis was performed using two additional methodological quality checklists. The influences of quality score and important study characteristics on ROI were explored. Fifty-one studies (61 intervention arms) published between 1984 and 2012 included 261,901 participants and 122,242 controls from nine industry types across 12 countries. Methodological quality scores were highly correlated between checklists (r = .84-.93). Methodological quality improved over time. Overall weighted ROI [mean ± standard deviation (confidence interval)] was 1.38 ± 1.97 (1.38-1.39), which indicated a 138% return on investment. When accounting for methodological quality, an inverse relationship to ROI was found. High-quality studies (n = 18) had a smaller mean ROI, 0.26 ± 1.74 (.23-.30), compared to moderate (n = 16) 0.90 ± 1.25 (.90-.91) and low-quality (n = 27) 2.32 ± 2.14 (2.30-2.33) studies. Randomized control trials (RCTs) (n = 12) exhibited negative ROI, -0.22 ± 2.41(-.27 to -.16). Financial returns become

  13. Quality Improvement Methodologies Increase Autologous Blood Product Administration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodge, Ashley B.; Preston, Thomas J.; Fitch, Jill A.; Harrison, Sheilah K.; Hersey, Diane K.; Nicol, Kathleen K.; Naguib, Aymen N.; McConnell, Patrick I.; Galantowicz, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Abstract: Whole blood from the heart–lung (bypass) machine may be processed through a cell salvaging device (i.e., cell saver [CS]) and subsequently administered to the patient during cardiac surgery. It was determined at our institution that CS volume was being discarded. A multidisciplinary team consisting of anesthesiologists, perfusionists, intensive care physicians, quality improvement (QI) professionals, and bedside nurses met to determine the challenges surrounding autologous blood delivery in its entirety. A review of cardiac surgery patients’ charts (n = 21) was conducted for analysis of CS waste. After identification of practices that were leading to CS waste, interventions were designed and implemented. Fishbone diagram, key driver diagram, Plan–Do–Study–Act (PDSA) cycles, and data collection forms were used throughout this QI process to track and guide progress regarding CS waste. Of patients under 6 kg (n = 5), 80% had wasted CS blood before interventions, whereas those patients larger than 36 kg (n = 8) had 25% wasted CS before interventions. Seventy-five percent of patients under 6 kg who had wasted CS blood received packed red blood cell transfusions in the cardiothoracic intensive care unit within 24 hours of their operation. After data collection and didactic education sessions (PDSA Cycle I), CS blood volume waste was reduced to 5% in all patients. Identification and analysis of the root cause followed by implementation of education, training, and management of change (PDSA Cycle II) resulted in successful use of 100% of all CS blood volume. PMID:24783313

  14. "Assessing the methodological quality of systematic reviews in radiation oncology: A systematic review".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasan, Haroon; Muhammed, Taaha; Yu, Jennifer; Taguchi, Kelsi; Samargandi, Osama A; Howard, A Fuchsia; Lo, Andrea C; Olson, Robert; Goddard, Karen

    2017-10-01

    The objective of our study was to evaluate the methodological quality of systematic reviews and meta-analyses in Radiation Oncology. A systematic literature search was conducted for all eligible systematic reviews and meta-analyses in Radiation Oncology from 1966 to 2015. Methodological characteristics were abstracted from all works that satisfied the inclusion criteria and quality was assessed using the critical appraisal tool, AMSTAR. Regression analyses were performed to determine factors associated with a higher score of quality. Following exclusion based on a priori criteria, 410 studies (157 systematic reviews and 253 meta-analyses) satisfied the inclusion criteria. Meta-analyses were found to be of fair to good quality while systematic reviews were found to be of less than fair quality. Factors associated with higher scores of quality in the multivariable analysis were including primary studies consisting of randomized control trials, performing a meta-analysis, and applying a recommended guideline related to establishing a systematic review protocol and/or reporting. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses may introduce a high risk of bias if applied to inform decision-making based on AMSTAR. We recommend that decision-makers in Radiation Oncology scrutinize the methodological quality of systematic reviews and meta-analyses prior to assessing their utility to inform evidence-based medicine and researchers adhere to methodological standards outlined in validated guidelines when embarking on a systematic review. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Does Deregulation of Quality Standards in Telecomunications Improve Social Welfare? A Methodological Note Does Deregulation of Quality Standards in Telecomunications Improve Social Welfare? A Methodological Note

    OpenAIRE

    Felipe Morandé

    1990-01-01

    Does Deregulation of Quality Standards in Telecomunications Improve Social Welfare? A Methodological Note One of the main reasons behind the bit difference observed in the per capita number of telephones between develope and developing countries is the high capital cost -a scarce resource in LDC's- of expanding telecommunications infrastructure. A reasonable question to raise in this context is the extent to which that high capital cost of investment could be diminished if international quali...

  16. Methodologic quality and relevance of references in pharmaceutical advertisements in a Canadian medical journal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lexchin, J; Holbrook, A

    1994-07-01

    To evaluate the methodologic quality and relevance of references in pharmaceutical advertisements in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ). Analytic study. All 114 references cited in the first 22 distinct pharmaceutical advertisements in volume 146 of CMAJ. Mean methodologic quality score (modified from the 6-point scale used to assess articles in the American College of Physicians' Journal Club) and mean relevance score (based on a new 5-point scale) for all references in each advertisement. Twenty of the 22 companies responded, sending 78 (90%) of the 87 references requested. The mean methodologic quality score was 58% (95% confidence limits [CL] 51% and 65%) and the mean relevance score 76% (95% CL 72% and 80%). The two mean scores were statistically lower than the acceptable score of 80% (p e., other than reports of clinical trials). Half of the advertisements had a methodologic quality score of less than 65%, but only five had a relevance score of less than 65%. Although the relevance of most of the references was within minimal acceptable limits, the methodologic quality was often unacceptable. Because advertisements are an important part of pharmaceutical marketing and education, we suggest that companies develop written standards for their advertisements and monitor their advertisements for adherence to these standards. We also suggest that the Pharmaceutical Advertising Advisory Board develop more stringent guidelines for advertising and that it enforce these guidelines in a consistent, rigorous fashion.

  17. A new perspective on human health risk assessment: Development of a time dependent methodology and the effect of varying exposure durations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Siirila, Erica R.; Maxwell, Reed M.

    2012-01-01

    We present a new Time Dependent Risk Assessment (TDRA) that stochastically considers how joint uncertainty and inter-individual variability (JUV) associated with human health risk change as a function of time. In contrast to traditional, time independent assessments of risk, this new formulation relays information on when the risk occurs, how long the duration of risk is, and how risk changes with time. Because the true exposure duration (ED) is often uncertain in a risk assessment, we also investigate how varying the magnitude of fixed size durations (ranging between 5 and 70 years) of this parameter affects the distribution of risk in both the time independent and dependent methodologies. To illustrate this new formulation and to investigate these mechanisms for sensitivity, an example of arsenic contaminated groundwater is used in conjunction with two scenarios of different environmental concentration signals resulting from rate dependencies in geochemical reactions. Cancer risk is computed and compared using environmental concentration ensembles modeled with sorption as 1) a linear equilibrium assumption (LEA) and 2) first order kinetics (Kin). Results show that the information attained in the new time dependent methodology reveals how the uncertainty in other time-dependent processes in the risk assessment may influence the uncertainty in risk. We also show that individual susceptibility also affects how risk changes in time, information that would otherwise be lost in the traditional, time independent methodology. These results are especially pertinent for forecasting risk in time, and for risk managers who are assessing the uncertainty of risk. - Highlights: ► A human health, Time Dependent Risk Assessment (TDRA) methodology is presented. ► TDRA relays information on the magnitude, duration, and fluxes of risk in time. ► Kinetic and equilibrium concentration signals show sensitivity in TDRA results. ► In the TDRA results, individual susceptibility

  18. Survey of the prevalence and methodology of quality assurance for B-mode ultrasound image quality among veterinary sonographers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoscheit, Larry P; Heng, Hock Gan; Lim, Chee Kin; Weng, Hsin-Yi

    2018-05-01

    Image quality in B-mode ultrasound is important as it reflects the diagnostic accuracy and diagnostic information provided during clinical scanning. Quality assurance programs for B-mode ultrasound systems/components are comprised of initial quality acceptance testing and subsequent regularly scheduled quality control testing. The importance of quality assurance programs for B-mode ultrasound image quality using ultrasound phantoms is well documented in the human medical and medical physics literature. The purpose of this prospective, cross-sectional, survey study was to determine the prevalence and methodology of quality acceptance testing and quality control testing of image quality for ultrasound system/components among veterinary sonographers. An online electronic survey was sent to 1497 members of veterinary imaging organizations: the American College of Veterinary Radiology, the Veterinary Ultrasound Society, and the European Association of Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging, and a total of 167 responses were received. The results showed that the percentages of veterinary sonographers performing quality acceptance testing and quality control testing are 42% (64/151; 95% confidence interval 34-52%) and 26% (40/156: 95% confidence interval 19-33%) respectively. Of the respondents who claimed to have quality acceptance testing or quality control testing of image quality in place for their ultrasound system/components, 0% have performed quality acceptance testing or quality control testing correctly (quality acceptance testing 95% confidence interval: 0-6%, quality control testing 95% confidence interval: 0-11%). Further education and guidelines are recommended for veterinary sonographers in the area of quality acceptance testing and quality control testing for B-mode ultrasound equipment/components. © 2018 American College of Veterinary Radiology.

  19. Methodological quality and descriptive characteristics of prosthodontic-related systematic reviews.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aziz, T; Compton, S; Nassar, U; Matthews, D; Ansari, K; Flores-Mir, C

    2013-04-01

    Ideally, healthcare systematic reviews (SRs) should be beneficial to practicing professionals in making evidence-based clinical decisions. However, the conclusions drawn from SRs are directly related to the quality of the SR and of the included studies. The aim was to investigate the methodological quality and key descriptive characteristics of SRs published in prosthodontics. Methodological quality was analysed using the Assessment of Multiple Reviews (AMSTAR) tool. Several electronic resources (MEDLINE, EMBASE, Web of Science and American Dental Association's Evidence-based Dentistry website) were searched. In total 106 SRs were located. Key descriptive characteristics and methodological quality features were gathered and assessed, and descriptive and inferential statistical testing performed. Most SRs in this sample originated from the European continent followed by North America. Two to five authors conducted most SRs; the majority was affiliated with academic institutions and had prior experience publishing SRs. The majority of SRs were published in specialty dentistry journals, with implant or implant-related topics, the primary topics of interest for most. According to AMSTAR, most quality aspects were adequately fulfilled by less than half of the reviews. Publication bias and grey literature searches were the most poorly adhered components. Overall, the methodological quality of the prosthodontic-related systematic was deemed limited. Future recommendations would include authors to have prior training in conducting SRs and for journals to include a universal checklist that should be adhered to address all key characteristics of an unbiased SR process. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  20. The methodological quality of systematic reviews of animal studies in dentistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faggion, C M; Listl, S; Giannakopoulos, N N

    2012-05-01

    Systematic reviews and meta-analyses of animal studies are important for improving estimates of the effects of treatment and for guiding future clinical studies on humans. The purpose of this systematic review was to assess the methodological quality of systematic reviews and meta-analyses of animal studies in dentistry through using a validated checklist. A literature search was conducted independently and in duplicate in the PubMed and LILACS databases. References in selected systematic reviews were assessed to identify other studies not captured by the electronic searches. The methodological quality of studies was assessed independently and in duplicate by using the AMSTAR checklist; the quality was scored as low, moderate, or high. The reviewers were calibrated before the assessment and agreement between them was assessed using Cohen's Kappa statistic. Of 444 studies retrieved, 54 systematic reviews were selected after full-text assessment. Agreement between the reviewers was regarded as excellent. Only two studies were scored as high quality; 17 and 35 studies were scored as medium and low quality, respectively. There is room for improvement of the methodological quality of systematic reviews of animal studies in dentistry. Checklists, such as AMSTAR, can guide researchers in planning and executing systematic reviews and meta-analyses. For determining the need for additional investigations in animals and in order to provide good data for potential application in human, such reviews should be based on animal experiments performed according to sound methodological principles. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Identifying approaches for assessing methodological and reporting quality of systematic reviews

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pussegoda, Kusala; Turner, Lucy; Garritty, Chantelle

    2017-01-01

    there are potential gaps in research best-practice guidance materials. The aims of this study are to identify reports assessing the methodological quality (MQ) and/or reporting quality (RQ) of a cohort of SRs and to assess their number, general characteristics, and approaches to 'quality' assessment over time......BACKGROUND: The methodological quality and completeness of reporting of the systematic reviews (SRs) is fundamental to optimal implementation of evidence-based health care and the reduction of research waste. Methods exist to appraise SRs yet little is known about how they are used in SRs or where...... or reporting guidelines used as proxy to assess RQ were used in 80% (61/76) of identified reports. These included two reporting guidelines (PRISMA and QUOROM) and five quality assessment tools (AMSTAR, R-AMSTAR, OQAQ, Mulrow, Sacks) and GRADE criteria. The remaining 24% (18/76) of reports developed their own...

  2. Models of quality-adjusted life years when health varies over time

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Kristian Schultz; Østerdal, Lars Peter Raahave

    2006-01-01

    Qualityadjusted life year (QALY) models are widely used for economic evaluation in the health care sector. In the first part of the paper, we establish an overview of QALY models where health varies over time and provide a theoretical analysis of model identification and parameter estimation from...... time tradeoff (TTO) and standard gamble (SG) scores. We investigate deterministic and probabilistic models and consider five different families of discounting functions in all. The second part of the paper discusses four issues recurrently debated in the literature. This discussion includes questioning...... of these two can be used to disentangle risk aversion from discounting. We find that caution must be taken when drawing conclusions from models with chronic health states to situations where health varies over time. One notable difference is that in the former case, risk aversion may be indistinguishable from...

  3. Power quality improvement in highly varying loads using thyristor-switched capacitor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poshtan, M. [Petroleum Inst., Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates). Dept. of Electrical Engineering; Mokhtari, H.; Esmaeili, A. [Sharif Univ. of Technology, Tehran (Iran, Islamic Republic of). Dept. of Electrical Engineering

    2007-07-01

    Ordinary contactor-based-capacitor (CBC) banks may not be able to response quickly enough in highly varying electrical loads such as welding machines or arc furnace loads. Thyristor-switched capacitor (TSC) banks are therefore used to compensate for reactive power of highly varying loads. In this paper, the performance of a TSC was compared to CBC banks. The 2 systems, were also compared in terms of energy saving in transmission systems. Simulations carried out using PSCAD/EMTDC software showed that there was a considerable difference in the performance of the 2 systems. The shortcomings of existing CBC systems include slow response of mechanical switching systems; problem of switching more than one bank into the system; and, voltage/current transients during on-off switching. 3 refs., 6 tabs., 14 figs.

  4. Storage phosphor radiography of wrist fractures: a subjective comparison of image quality at varying exposure levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peer, Regina; Giacomuzzi, Salvatore M.; Bodner, Gerd; Jaschke, Werner; Peer, Siegfried [Innsbruck Univ. (Austria). Inst. fuer Radiologie; Lanser, Anton [Academy of Radiology Technicians, Innsbruck (Austria); Pechlaner, Sigurd [Department of Traumatology, University Hospital, Innsbruck (Austria); Kuenzel, Karl Heinz; Gaber, O. [Department of Anatomy and Histology, University Hospital, Innsbruck (Austria)

    2002-06-01

    Image quality of storage phosphor radiographs acquired at different exposure levels was compared to define the minimal radiation dose needed to achieve images which allow for reliable detection of wrist fractures. In a study on 33 fractured anatomical wrist specimens image quality of storage phosphor radiographs was assessed on a diagnostic PACS workstation by three observers. Images were acquired at exposure levels corresponding to a speed classes 100, 200, 400 and 800. Cortical bone surface, trabecular bone, soft tissues and fracture delineation were judged on a subjective basis. Image quality was rated according to a standard protocol and statistical evaluation was performed based on an analysis of variance (ANOVA). Images at a dose reduction of 37% were rated sufficient quality without loss in diagnostic accuracy. Sufficient trabecular and cortical bone presentation was still achieved at a dose reduction of 62%. The latter images, however, were considered unacceptable for fracture detection. To achieve high-quality storage phosphor radiographs, which allow for a reliable evaluation of wrist fractures, a minimum exposure dose equivalent to a speed class of 200 is needed. For general-purpose skeletal radiography, however, a dose reduction of up to 62% can be achieved. A choice of exposure settings according to the clinical situation (ALARA principle) is recommended to achieve possible dose reductions. (orig.)

  5. A quality evaluation methodology of health web-pages for non-professionals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Currò, Vincenzo; Buonuomo, Paola Sabrina; Onesimo, Roberta; de Rose, Paola; Vituzzi, Andrea; di Tanna, Gian Luca; D'Atri, Alessandro

    2004-06-01

    The proposal of an evaluation methodology for determining the quality of healthcare web sites for the dissemination of medical information to non-professionals. Three (macro) factors are considered for the quality evaluation: medical contents, accountability of the authors, and usability of the web site. Starting from two results in the literature the problem of whether or not to introduce a weighting function has been investigated. This methodology has been validated on a specialized information content, i.e., sore throats, due to the large interest such a topic enjoys with target users. The World Wide Web was accessed using a meta-search system merging several search engines. A statistical analysis was made to compare the proposed methodology with the obtained ranks of the sample web pages. The statistical analysis confirms that the variables examined (per item and sub factor) show substantially similar ranks and are capable of contributing to the evaluation of the main quality macro factors. A comparison between the aggregation functions in the proposed methodology (non-weighted averages) and the weighting functions, derived from the literature, allowed us to verify the suitability of the method. The proposed methodology suggests a simple approach which can quickly award an overall quality score for medical web sites oriented to non-professionals.

  6. Combined risk assessment of nonstationary monthly water quality based on Markov chain and time-varying copula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Wei; Xia, Jun

    2017-02-01

    Water quality risk management is a global hot research linkage with the sustainable water resource development. Ammonium nitrogen (NH 3 -N) and permanganate index (COD Mn ) as the focus indicators in Huai River Basin, are selected to reveal their joint transition laws based on Markov theory. The time-varying moments model with either time or land cover index as explanatory variables is applied to build the time-varying marginal distributions of water quality time series. Time-varying copula model, which takes the non-stationarity in the marginal distribution and/or the time variation in dependence structure between water quality series into consideration, is constructed to describe a bivariate frequency analysis for NH 3 -N and COD Mn series at the same monitoring gauge. The larger first-order Markov joint transition probability indicates water quality state Class V w , Class IV and Class III will occur easily in the water body of Bengbu Sluice. Both marginal distribution and copula models are nonstationary, and the explanatory variable time yields better performance than land cover index in describing the non-stationarities in the marginal distributions. In modelling the dependence structure changes, time-varying copula has a better fitting performance than the copula with the constant or the time-trend dependence parameter. The largest synchronous encounter risk probability of NH 3 -N and COD Mn simultaneously reaching Class V is 50.61%, while the asynchronous encounter risk probability is largest when NH 3 -N and COD Mn is inferior to class V and class IV water quality standards, respectively.

  7. Annual warm-season grasses vary for forage yield, quality, and competitiveness with weeds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warm-season annual grasses may be suitable as herbicide-free forage crops. A two-year field study was conducted to determine whether tillage system and nitrogen (N) fertilizer application method influenced crop and weed biomass, water use, water use efficiency (WUE), and forage quality of three war...

  8. Contribution of insect pollinators to crop yield and quality varies with agricultural intensification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignasi Bartomeus

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Background. Up to 75% of crop species benefit at least to some degree from animal pollination for fruit or seed set and yield. However, basic information on the level of pollinator dependence and pollinator contribution to yield is lacking for many crops. Even less is known about how insect pollination affects crop quality. Given that habitat loss and agricultural intensification are known to decrease pollinator richness and abundance, there is a need to assess the consequences for different components of crop production.Methods. We used pollination exclusion on flowers or inflorescences on a whole plant basis to assess the contribution of insect pollination to crop yield and quality in four flowering crops (spring oilseed rape, field bean, strawberry, and buckwheat located in four regions of Europe. For each crop, we recorded abundance and species richness of flower visiting insects in ten fields located along a gradient from simple to heterogeneous landscapes.Results. Insect pollination enhanced average crop yield between 18 and 71% depending on the crop. Yield quality was also enhanced in most crops. For instance, oilseed rape had higher oil and lower chlorophyll contents when adequately pollinated, the proportion of empty seeds decreased in buckwheat, and strawberries’ commercial grade improved; however, we did not find higher nitrogen content in open pollinated field beans. Complex landscapes had a higher overall species richness of wild pollinators across crops, but visitation rates were only higher in complex landscapes for some crops. On the contrary, the overall yield was consistently enhanced by higher visitation rates, but not by higher pollinator richness.Discussion. For the four crops in this study, there is clear benefit delivered by pollinators on yield quantity and/or quality, but it is not maximized under current agricultural intensification. Honeybees, the most abundant pollinator, might partially compensate the loss of wild

  9. Contribution of insect pollinators to crop yield and quality varies with agricultural intensification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartomeus, Ignasi; Potts, Simon G; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Vaissière, Bernard E; Woyciechowski, Michal; Krewenka, Kristin M; Tscheulin, Thomas; Roberts, Stuart P M; Szentgyörgyi, Hajnalka; Westphal, Catrin; Bommarco, Riccardo

    2014-01-01

    Background. Up to 75% of crop species benefit at least to some degree from animal pollination for fruit or seed set and yield. However, basic information on the level of pollinator dependence and pollinator contribution to yield is lacking for many crops. Even less is known about how insect pollination affects crop quality. Given that habitat loss and agricultural intensification are known to decrease pollinator richness and abundance, there is a need to assess the consequences for different components of crop production. Methods. We used pollination exclusion on flowers or inflorescences on a whole plant basis to assess the contribution of insect pollination to crop yield and quality in four flowering crops (spring oilseed rape, field bean, strawberry, and buckwheat) located in four regions of Europe. For each crop, we recorded abundance and species richness of flower visiting insects in ten fields located along a gradient from simple to heterogeneous landscapes. Results. Insect pollination enhanced average crop yield between 18 and 71% depending on the crop. Yield quality was also enhanced in most crops. For instance, oilseed rape had higher oil and lower chlorophyll contents when adequately pollinated, the proportion of empty seeds decreased in buckwheat, and strawberries' commercial grade improved; however, we did not find higher nitrogen content in open pollinated field beans. Complex landscapes had a higher overall species richness of wild pollinators across crops, but visitation rates were only higher in complex landscapes for some crops. On the contrary, the overall yield was consistently enhanced by higher visitation rates, but not by higher pollinator richness. Discussion. For the four crops in this study, there is clear benefit delivered by pollinators on yield quantity and/or quality, but it is not maximized under current agricultural intensification. Honeybees, the most abundant pollinator, might partially compensate the loss of wild pollinators in

  10. Decadal stream water quality trends under varying climate, land use, and hydrogeochemical setting in, Iowa, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Christopher; Bekins, Barbara; Kalkhoff, Stephen; Hirsch, Robert; Liao, Lixia; Barnes, Kimberlee

    2015-04-01

    Understanding how nitrogen fluxes respond to changes in agricultural practices and climatic variations is important for improving water quality in agricultural settings. In the central United States, intensification of corn cropping in support of ethanol production led to increases in N application rates in the 2000s during a period including both extreme dry and wet conditions. To examine the effect of these recent changes, a study was conducted on surface water quality in 10 major Iowa Rivers. Long term (~20 to 30 years) water quality and flow data were analyzed with Weighted Regression on Time, Discharge and Season (WRTDS), a statistical method that provides internally consistent estimates of the concentration history and reveals decadal trends that are independent of random variations of stream flow from seasonal averages. Trends of surface water quality showed constant or decreasing flow-normalized concentrations of nitrate+nitrite-N from 2000 to 2012 in all basins. To evaluate effects of annual discharge and N loading on these trends, multiple conceptual models were developed and calibrated to annual concentrations. The recent declining concentration trends can be attributed to both very high and very low streamflow discharge in the 2000's and to the long (e.g. 8-year) subsurface residence times in some basins. Dilution of surface water nitrate and depletion of stored nitrate may occur in years with very high discharge. Limited transport of N to streams and accumulation of stored N may occur in years with very low discharge. Central Iowa basins showed the greatest reduction in concentrations, likely because extensive tile-drains limit the effective volumes for storage of N and reduce residence times, and because the glacial sediments in these basins promote denitrification. Changes in nitrogen fluxes resulting from ethanol production and other factors will likely be delayed for years or decades in peripheral basins of Iowa, and may be obscured in the central

  11. Satisfaction with quality of life varies with temperament types of patients with schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritsner, Michael; Farkas, Herman; Gibel, Anatoly

    2003-10-01

    We sought to explore the relationships of three temperament factors with domain-specific subjective quality of life (QOL) of patients with schizophrenia. Ninety patients with schizophrenia were evaluated using the Quality of Life Enjoyment and Life Satisfaction Questionnaire, the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, the Positive and Negative Syndromes Scale, the Distress Scale for Adverse Symptoms, the Insight and Treatment Attitudes Questionnaire, the Insight Self-Report Scale, and standardized questionnaires for self-reported emotional distress and stress process-related variables. Predictors of domain-specific QOL were identified using multiple regression techniques. Temperament factors explain 6% to 16% of variability in QOL domain scores among patients with schizophrenia after controlling for the remaining variables (emotional distress, social support, self-esteem, avoidance coping, age, side effects, and depression). We found that higher levels of novelty seeking are associated with better general QOL, physical health, and more positive subjective feelings, whereas higher levels of reward dependence are related to better satisfaction from social relationships. Higher levels of harm avoidance are associated with poorer satisfaction with general activities, and medication. Thus, temperament factors, as assessed by the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, substantially influence satisfaction with life quality in schizophrenia. Novelty seeking, reward dependence, and harm avoidance are associated with different domains of QOL.

  12. #eVALUate: Monetizing Service Acquisition Trade-offs Using the QUALITY-INFUSED Price Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-01

    they determine their source selection methodology along the best-value spectrum, ranging from lowest price technically acceptable (LPTA) to full...sidering factors determined to be germane to service value to the agency (Finkenstadt, 2015). Once an offeror’s prices are determined to be fair and... determine whether the quality rating system would affect the quality trade-off. In this case, the highest priced yet highest rated offeror was selected

  13. Guidance on assessing the methodological and reporting quality of toxicologically relevant studies: A scoping review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samuel, Gbeminiyi O; Hoffmann, Sebastian; Wright, Robert A; Lalu, Manoj Mathew; Patlewicz, Grace; Becker, Richard A; DeGeorge, George L; Fergusson, Dean; Hartung, Thomas; Lewis, R Jeffrey; Stephens, Martin L

    2016-01-01

    Assessments of methodological and reporting quality are critical to adequately judging the credibility of a study's conclusions and to gauging its potential reproducibility. To aid those seeking to assess the methodological or reporting quality of studies relevant to toxicology, we conducted a scoping review of the available guidance with respect to four types of studies: in vivo and in vitro, (quantitative) structure-activity relationships ([Q]SARs), physico-chemical, and human observational studies. Our aims were to identify the available guidance in this diverse literature, briefly summarize each document, and distill the common elements of these documents for each study type. In general, we found considerable guidance for in vivo and human studies, but only one paper addressed in vitro studies exclusively. The guidance for (Q)SAR studies and physico-chemical studies was scant but authoritative. There was substantial overlap across guidance documents in the proposed criteria for both methodological and reporting quality. Some guidance documents address toxicology research directly, whereas others address preclinical research generally or clinical research and therefore may not be fully applicable to the toxicology context without some translation. Another challenge is the degree to which assessments of methodological quality in toxicology should focus on risk of bias - as in clinical medicine and healthcare - or be broadened to include other quality measures, such as confirming the identity of test substances prior to exposure. Our review is intended primarily for those in toxicology and risk assessment seeking an entry point into the extensive and diverse literature on methodological and reporting quality applicable to their work. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  14. Translating Oral Health-Related Quality of Life Measures: Are There Alternative Methodologies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brondani, Mario; He, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Translating existing sociodental indicators to another language involves a rigorous methodology, which can be costly. Free-of-charge online translator tools are available, but have not been evaluated in the context of research involving quality of life measures. To explore the value of using online translator tools to develop oral health-related…

  15. The methodological quality of economic evaluation studies in obstetrics and gynecology: a systematic review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijgen, Sylvia M. C.; Opmeer, Brent C.; Mol, Ben Willem J.

    2013-01-01

    We evaluated the methodological quality of economic evaluation studies in the field of obstetrics and gynecology published in the last decade. A MEDLINE search was performed to find economic evaluation studies in obstetrics and gynecology from the years 1997 through 2009. We included full economic

  16. Development of Management Quality Assessment Methodology in the Public Sector: Problems and Contradictions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga Vladimirovna Kozhevina

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The development management quality assessment methodology in the public sector is relevant scientific and practical problem of economic research. The utilization of the results of the assessment on the basis of the authors’ methodology allows us to rate the public sector organizations, to justify decisions on the reorganization and privatization, and to monitor changes in the level of the management quality of the public sector organizations. The study determined the place of the quality of the control processes of the public sector organization in the system of “Quality of public administration — the effective operation of the public sector organization,” the contradictions associated with the assessment of management quality are revealed, the conditions for effective functioning of the public sector organizations are proved, a mechanism of comprehensive assessment and algorithm for constructing and evaluating the control models of management quality are developed, the criteria for assessing the management quality in the public sector organizations, including economic, budgetary, social and public, informational, innovation and institutional criteria are empirically grounded. By utilizing the proposed algorithm, the assessment model of quality management in the public sector organizations, including the financial, economic, social, innovation, informational and institutional indicators is developed. For each indicator of quality management, the coefficients of importance in the management quality assessment model, as well as comprehensive and partial evaluation indicators are determined on the basis of the expert evaluations. The main conclusion of the article is that management quality assessment for the public sector organizations should be based not only on the indicators achieved in the dynamics and utilized for analyzing the effectiveness of management, but also should take into account the reference levels for the values of these

  17. Reporting and methodologic quality of Cochrane Neonatal review group systematic reviews

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Al Faleh Khalid

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Cochrane Neonatal Review Group (CNRG has achieved a lot with limited resources in producing high quality systematic reviews to assist clinicians in evidence-based decision-making. A formal assessment of published CNRG systematic reviews has not been undertaken; we sought to provide a comprehensive assessment of the quality of systematic reviews (both methodologic and reporting quality published in CNRG. Methods We selected a random sample of published CNRG systematic reviews. Items of the QUOROM statement were utilized to assess quality of reporting, while items and total scores of the Oxman-Guyatt Overview Quality Assessment Questionnaire (OQAQ were used to assess methodologic quality. Two reviewers independently extracted data and assessed quality. A Student t-test was used to compare quality scores pre- and post-publication of the QUOROM statement. Results Sixty-one systematic reviews were assessed. Overall, the included reviews had good quality with minor flaws based on OQAQ total scores (mean, 4.5 [0.9]; 95% CI, 4.27–4.77. However, room for improvement was noted in some areas, such as the title, abstract reporting, a priori plan for heterogeneity assessment and how to handle heterogeneity in case it exists, and assessment of publication bias. In addition, reporting of agreement among reviewers, documentation of trials flow, and discussion of possible biases were addressed in the review process. Reviews published post the QUOROM statement had a significantly higher quality scores. Conclusion The systematic reviews published in the CNRG are generally of good quality with minor flaws. However, efforts should be made to improve the quality of reports. Readers must continue to assess the quality of published reports on an individual basis prior to implementing the recommendations.

  18. Mate choice for genetic quality when environments vary: suggestions for empirical progress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bussière, Luc F; Hunt, John; Stölting, Kai N; Jennions, Michael D; Brooks, Robert

    2008-09-01

    Mate choice for good-genes remains one of the most controversial evolutionary processes ever proposed. This is partly because strong directional choice should theoretically deplete the genetic variation that explains the evolution of this type of female mating preference (the so-called lek paradox). Moreover, good-genes benefits are generally assumed to be too small to outweigh opposing direct selection on females. Here, we review recent progress in the study of mate choice for genetic quality, focussing particularly on the potential for genotype by environment interactions (GEIs) to rescue additive genetic variation for quality, and thereby resolve the lek paradox. We raise five questions that we think will stimulate empirical progress in this field, and suggest directions for research in each area: (1) How is condition-dependence affected by environmental variation? (2) How important are GEIs for maintaining additive genetic variance in condition? (3) How much do GEIs reduce the signalling value of male condition? (4) How does GEI affect the multivariate version of the lek paradox? (5) Have mating biases for high-condition males evolved because of indirect benefits?

  19. Development of a methodology for the analysis of the crystalline quality of single crystals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metairon, Sabrina

    1999-01-01

    This work aims to establish a methodology for the analysis of the crystalline quality of single crystals. It is shown in the work as from neutron diffraction tridimensional rocking curves it is possible to determine the intrinsic widths at half maximum of the crystalline domains of a crystal, as well as the relative intensities of such domains and the angular distances between them. The construction of contour maps, on the bases of the tridimensional curves, make easier the determination of the above characteristics. For the development of the method, tridimensional rocking curves (I x ω x χ) have been obtained with neutrons from a barium lithium fluoride (BaLiF 3 ) and an aluminum crystal. The intensity I was obtained as rocking curves around the ω axis, with the angle % varying in a convenient interval. The individual (I x ω) and (I x χ) curves, which constitute the tridimensional rocking curve, were fitted by Gaussians and, in continuation of the process, the instrumental broadenings in directions ω and χ were deconvoluted from them. The instrumental broadenings were obtained with perfect type lithium fluoride (LiF) single crystals in the form of rocking curves around the ω and χ axes. Due to an enhanced Lorentz factor in direction χ, the scale in this direction was 'shrunk' by a correction factor in order to make the widths at half maximum of domains equivalent to those found in direction co. The contour map constructed with the deconvoluted rocking curves for BaLiF 3 , showed the existence of a 'proximity effect' that occurs when the widths at half maximum of domains have values near the value of the instrumental broadening. The contour map constructed with the deconvoluted rocking curves for aluminum, showed five domains of the mosaic type. Such domains were characterized concerning the width at half maximum, relative intensity and distance between them. (author)

  20. A new perspective on human health risk assessment: Development of a time dependent methodology and the effect of varying exposure durations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Siirila, Erica R., E-mail: esiirila@mymail.mines.edu [Hydrologic Science and Engineering Program, Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St., Golden, CO 80401 (United States); Department of Geology and Geological Engineering, Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St., Golden, CO 80401 (United States); Maxwell, Reed M., E-mail: rmaxwell@mines.edu [Hydrologic Science and Engineering Program, Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St., Golden, CO 80401 (United States); Integrated Groundwater Modeling Center (IGWMC), Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St., Golden, CO 80401 (United States); Department of Geology and Geological Engineering, Colorado School of Mines, 1500 Illinois St., Golden, CO 80401 (United States)

    2012-08-01

    We present a new Time Dependent Risk Assessment (TDRA) that stochastically considers how joint uncertainty and inter-individual variability (JUV) associated with human health risk change as a function of time. In contrast to traditional, time independent assessments of risk, this new formulation relays information on when the risk occurs, how long the duration of risk is, and how risk changes with time. Because the true exposure duration (ED) is often uncertain in a risk assessment, we also investigate how varying the magnitude of fixed size durations (ranging between 5 and 70 years) of this parameter affects the distribution of risk in both the time independent and dependent methodologies. To illustrate this new formulation and to investigate these mechanisms for sensitivity, an example of arsenic contaminated groundwater is used in conjunction with two scenarios of different environmental concentration signals resulting from rate dependencies in geochemical reactions. Cancer risk is computed and compared using environmental concentration ensembles modeled with sorption as 1) a linear equilibrium assumption (LEA) and 2) first order kinetics (Kin). Results show that the information attained in the new time dependent methodology reveals how the uncertainty in other time-dependent processes in the risk assessment may influence the uncertainty in risk. We also show that individual susceptibility also affects how risk changes in time, information that would otherwise be lost in the traditional, time independent methodology. These results are especially pertinent for forecasting risk in time, and for risk managers who are assessing the uncertainty of risk. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer A human health, Time Dependent Risk Assessment (TDRA) methodology is presented. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer TDRA relays information on the magnitude, duration, and fluxes of risk in time. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Kinetic and equilibrium concentration signals show

  1. Supplemental effect of varying L-cysteine concentrations on the quality of cryopreserved boar semen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaeoket, Kampon; Chanapiwat, Panida; Tummaruk, Padet; Techakumphu, Mongkol

    2010-01-01

    Cryopreservation is associated with the production of reactive oxygen species, which leads to lipid peroxidation of the sperm membrane and consequently a reduction in sperm motility and decreased fertility potential. The aim of this study was to determine the optimal concentration of L-cysteine needed for cryopreservation of boar semen. Twelve boars provided semen of proven motility and morphology for this study. The semen was divided into four portions in which the lactose-egg yolk (LEY) extender used to resuspend the centrifuged sperm pellet was supplemented with various concentrations of L-cysteine to reach 0 mmol L−1 (group I, control), 5 mmol L−1 (group II), 10 mmol L−1 (group III) and 15 mmol L−1 (group IV). Semen suspensions were loaded in straws (0.5 mL) and placed in a controlled-rate freezer. After cryopreservation, frozen semen samples were thawed and investigated for progressive motility, viability using SYBR-14/EthD-1 staining and acrosome integrity using FITC-PNA/EthD-1 staining. There was a significantly higher (P extender for improving the quality of frozen–thawed boar semen. PMID:20601963

  2. Application of Taguchi methodology to improve the functional quality of a mechanical device

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Regeai, Awatef Omar

    2005-01-01

    Manufacturing and quality control are recognized branches of engineering management. special attention has been made to improve thr tools and methods for the purpose of improving the products quality and finding solutions for any Obstacles and/or problems during the production process. Taguchi methodology is one of the most powerful techniques for improving product and manufacturing process quality at low cost. It is a strategical and practical method that aims to assist managers and industrial engineers to tackle manufacturing quality problems in a systematic and structured manner. The potential benefit of Taguchi methodology lies in its ease of use, its emphasis on reducing variability to give more economical products and hence the accessibility to the engineering fraternity for solving real life quality problems. This study applies Taguchi methodology to improve the functional quality of a local made chain gear by a purposed heat treatment process. The hardness of steel is generally a function not of its composition only, but rather of its heat treatment. The study investigates the effects of various heat treatment parameters, including ramp rate of heating, normalizing holding time, normalizing temperature, annealing holding time, annealing temperature, hardening holding time, hardening temperature, quenching media, tempering temperature and tempering holding time upon the hardness, which is a measure of resistance to plastic deformation. Both the analysis of means (ANOM) and Signal to Noise ratio (S/N) have been carried out for determining the optimal condition of the process. A significant improvement of the functional quality characteristic (hardness) by more than 32% was obtained. The Scanning Electron Microscopy technique was used in this study to obtain visual evidence of the quality and continuous improvement of the heat treated samples. (author)

  3. Fast-food menu offerings vary in dietary quality, but are consistently poor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkpatrick, Sharon I; Reedy, Jill; Kahle, Lisa L; Harris, Jennifer L; Ohri-Vachaspati, Punam; Krebs-Smith, Susan M

    2014-04-01

    To evaluate five popular fast-food chains' menus in relation to dietary guidance. Menus posted on chains' websites were coded using the Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies and MyPyramid Equivalents Database to enable Healthy Eating Index-2005 (HEI-2005) scores to be assigned. Dollar or value and kids' menus and sets of items promoted as healthy or nutritious were also assessed. Five popular fast-food chains in the USA. Not applicable. Full menus scored lower than 50 out of 100 possible points on the HEI-2005. Scores for Total Fruit, Whole Grains and Sodium were particularly dismal. Compared with full menus, scores on dollar or value menus were 3 points higher on average, whereas kids' menus scored 10 points higher on average. Three chains marketed subsets of items as healthy or nutritious; these scored 17 points higher on average compared with the full menus. No menu or subset of menu items received a score higher than 72 out of 100 points. The poor quality of fast-food menus is a concern in light of increasing away-from-home eating, aggressive marketing to children and minorities, and the tendency for fast-food restaurants to be located in low-income and minority areas. The addition of fruits, vegetables and legumes; replacement of refined with whole grains; and reformulation of offerings high in sodium, solid fats and added sugars are potential strategies to improve fast-food offerings. The HEI may be a useful metric for ongoing monitoring of fast-food menus.

  4. Application of quality improvement analytic methodology in emergency medicine research: A comparative evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harries, Bruce; Filiatrault, Lyne; Abu-Laban, Riyad B

    2018-05-30

    Quality improvement (QI) analytic methodology is rarely encountered in the emergency medicine literature. We sought to comparatively apply QI design and analysis techniques to an existing data set, and discuss these techniques as an alternative to standard research methodology for evaluating a change in a process of care. We used data from a previously published randomized controlled trial on triage-nurse initiated radiography using the Ottawa ankle rules (OAR). QI analytic tools were applied to the data set from this study and evaluated comparatively against the original standard research methodology. The original study concluded that triage nurse-initiated radiographs led to a statistically significant decrease in mean emergency department length of stay. Using QI analytic methodology, we applied control charts and interpreted the results using established methods that preserved the time sequence of the data. This analysis found a compelling signal of a positive treatment effect that would have been identified after the enrolment of 58% of the original study sample, and in the 6th month of this 11-month study. Our comparative analysis demonstrates some of the potential benefits of QI analytic methodology. We found that had this approach been used in the original study, insights regarding the benefits of nurse-initiated radiography using the OAR would have been achieved earlier, and thus potentially at a lower cost. In situations where the overarching aim is to accelerate implementation of practice improvement to benefit future patients, we believe that increased consideration should be given to the use of QI analytic methodology.

  5. Does the quality, accuracy, and readability of information about lateral epicondylitis on the internet vary with the search term used?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dy, Christopher J; Taylor, Samuel A; Patel, Ronak M; McCarthy, Moira M; Roberts, Timothy R; Daluiski, Aaron

    2012-12-01

    Concern exists over the quality, accuracy, and accessibility of online information about health care conditions. The goal of this study is to evaluate the quality, accuracy, and readability of information available on the internet about lateral epicondylitis. We used three different search terms ("tennis elbow," "lateral epicondylitis," and "elbow pain") in three search engines (Google, Bing, and Yahoo) to generate a list of 75 unique websites. Three orthopedic surgeons reviewed the content of each website and assessed the quality and accuracy of information. We assessed each website's readability using the Flesch-Kincaid method. Statistical comparisons were made using ANOVA with post hoc pairwise comparisons. The mean reading grade level was 11.1. None of the sites were under the recommended sixth grade reading level for the general public. Higher quality information was found when using the terms "tennis elbow" and "lateral epicondylitis" compared to "elbow pain" (p lateral epicondylitis is available online, especially from specialty societies. However, the quality and accuracy of information vary significantly with the search term, website author, and order of search results. This leaves less educated patients at a disadvantage, particularly because the information we encountered is above the reading level recommended for the general public.

  6. Methodological quality of systematic reviews analyzing the use of laser therapy in restorative dentistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmos, Janaina; Gerbi, Marleny E M M; Braz, Rodivan; Andrade, Emanuel S S; Vasconcelos, Belmiro C E; Bessa-Nogueira, Ricardo V

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify systematic reviews (SRs) that compared laser with other dental restorative procedures and to evaluate their methodological quality. A search strategy was developed and implemented for MEDLINE, the Cochrane Library, LILACS, and the Brazilian Dentistry Bibliography (1966- 2007). Inclusion criteria were: the article had to be an SR (+/- meta-analysis); primary focus was the use of laser in restorative dentistry; published in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German. Two investigators independently selected and evaluated the SRs. The overview quality assessment questionnaire (OQAQ) was used to evaluate methodological quality, and the results were averaged. There were 145 references identified, of which seven were SRs that met the inclusion criteria (kappa=0.81). Of the SRs, 71.4% appraised lasers in dental caries diagnosis. The mean overall OQAQ score was 4.4 [95% confidence interval (CI) 2.4- 6.5]. Of the SRs, 57.1% had major flaws, scoring methodological quality is low; therefore, clinicians should critically appraise them prior to considering their recommendations to guide patient care.

  7. Systematic Review of the Application of Lean and Six Sigma Quality Improvement Methodologies in Radiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaratunga, Thelina; Dobranowski, Julian

    2016-09-01

    Preventable yet clinically significant rates of medical error remain systemic, while health care spending is at a historic high. Industry-based quality improvement (QI) methodologies show potential for utility in health care and radiology because they use an empirical approach to reduce variability and improve workflow. The aim of this review was to systematically assess the literature with regard to the use and efficacy of Lean and Six Sigma (the most popular of the industrial QI methodologies) within radiology. MEDLINE, the Allied & Complementary Medicine Database, Embase Classic + Embase, Health and Psychosocial Instruments, and the Ovid HealthStar database, alongside the Cochrane Library databases, were searched on June 2015. Empirical studies in peer-reviewed journals were included if they assessed the use of Lean, Six Sigma, or Lean Six Sigma with regard to their ability to improve a variety of quality metrics in a radiology-centered clinical setting. Of the 278 articles returned, 23 studies were suitable for inclusion. Of these, 10 assessed Six Sigma, 7 assessed Lean, and 6 assessed Lean Six Sigma. The diverse range of measured outcomes can be organized into 7 common aims: cost savings, reducing appointment wait time, reducing in-department wait time, increasing patient volume, reducing cycle time, reducing defects, and increasing staff and patient safety and satisfaction. All of the included studies demonstrated improvements across a variety of outcomes. However, there were high rates of systematic bias and imprecision as per the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation guidelines. Lean and Six Sigma QI methodologies have the potential to reduce error and costs and improve quality within radiology. However, there is a pressing need to conduct high-quality studies in order to realize the true potential of these QI methodologies in health care and radiology. Recommendations on how to improve the quality of the literature are proposed

  8. [Types of medical registries - definitions, methodological aspects and quality of the scientific work with registries].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathis-Edenhofer, Stefan; Piso, Brigitte

    2011-12-01

    This work presents a comprehensive list of registry definitions including broader and narrower definitions. Compared to each other different methodological issues can be identified. Some of these issues are common for all registry types; some can be assigned more easily to a specific registry type. Instruments for evaluating the quality of registers reflect many of the mentioned aspects. Generally, and especially at registers with a descriptive or exploratory research dimension it is important to consider their intended purpose and in about it was achieved. This includes, for instance, whether the purpose and the methodology are coordinated. From the start of registration an initiator should be - based on the purpose - aware of the methodological dimension of the registry. This helps to apply the correct type of the registry, the appropriate guidance and, ultimately, the arguments for the effort (cost-benefit ratio).

  9. The implementation methodology of Total Quality Management in health services, as a best practice operation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theodora Malamou

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Total Quality Management – TQM (Total Quality Management-TQM, health services, is a modern management philosophy to improve the quality and efficiency of the organization as a whole, with the involvement of all employees, at all levels. According to the research data, the concept of quality is distinguished in technical, interpersonal quality and hotel infrastructure and focuses on patient satisfaction. The Critical success factors of TQM, organizations for business excellence in continuous competitive changing environment, is the management commitment, customer focus, constant communication with employees, encouragement and reward, education and scientific training, continuous improvement quality of service, interdependent relationships with suppliers, active employee participation, creation of representative indicators, targets and benchmarking, continuous outcome assessment and continuous review, review of program procedures. The purpose of this article is through the review of Greek and international literature, to introduce the methodology of a project TQM, to health services, as everyday best practice, with emphasis on quality of service. According to the literature review, TQM contributes to improving the quality of health services, the cultivation of team spirit, cooperation between health professionals and leadership, with a view to satisfy all. TQM is purely anthropocentric theory of organization and administration. We need comprehensive effort approach to improving the quality of leadership and the introduction of the culture of workers.

  10. Methodological quality of quantitative lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender nursing research from 2000 to 2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Michael; Smyer, Tish; Yucha, Carolyn

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the methodological quality of quantitative lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender nursing research from 2000 to 2010. Using a key word search in Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, 188 studies were identified and 40 met the criteria, which included descriptive, experimental, quasi-experimental, or observational (case control, cohort, and cross-sectional) design. The methodological quality of these studies was similar to that reported for medical and nursing educational research. The foci of these lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender studies were biased toward human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, and sexually transmitted diseases, and 58.5% of the funded research was related to human immunodeficiency virus or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. To provide evidence-based health care to these populations, an understanding of the current state of research is crucial.

  11. Proposal of a methodology for quality control in thermoluminescent dosimetry laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feital, Joao Carlos da S.; Almeida, Claudio Domingues de; Bezerra, Marcos A.

    2005-01-01

    Taken into account that in thermoluminescence dosimetry adequate selection procedures as well as accurate TLD readings are necessary, this paper presents results of methodology that can be applied as part of quality control programs in thermoluminescence dosimetry laboratories. For the experiment, a set of 200 TLDs ( LiF 100 ) were used and 9 from which were selected, a standard source of Cs -137 , a PTW kiln, a TL 'Harshaw' reader - model 5500 operating under the 'Win Rem' software and a Sr 90 / Y 90 'Bicron' irradiator. In the proceeding the selected dosimeters were irradiated and read 28 times during 18 months, then by one of the standard deviation properties, values up to 14 % were found, for a confidence level of 95 %. The results found and the bibliographic data related to the responses (arbitrary reading) in the crystals used in TLDs, have shown that this methodology can be applied in quality control programs. (author)

  12. Author-paper affiliation network architecture influences the methodological quality of systematic reviews and meta-analyses of psoriasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Luis Sanz-Cabanillas

    Full Text Available Moderate-to-severe psoriasis is associated with significant comorbidity, an impaired quality of life, and increased medical costs, including those associated with treatments. Systematic reviews (SRs and meta-analyses (MAs of randomized clinical trials are considered two of the best approaches to the summarization of high-quality evidence. However, methodological bias can reduce the validity of conclusions from these types of studies and subsequently impair the quality of decision making. As co-authorship is among the most well-documented forms of research collaboration, the present study aimed to explore whether authors' collaboration methods might influence the methodological quality of SRs and MAs of psoriasis. Methodological quality was assessed by two raters who extracted information from full articles. After calculating total and per-item Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR scores, reviews were classified as low (0-4, medium (5-8, or high (9-11 quality. Article metadata and journal-related bibliometric indices were also obtained. A total of 741 authors from 520 different institutions and 32 countries published 220 reviews that were classified as high (17.2%, moderate (55%, or low (27.7% methodological quality. The high methodological quality subnetwork was larger but had a lower connection density than the low and moderate methodological quality subnetworks; specifically, the former contained relatively fewer nodes (authors and reviews, reviews by authors, and collaborators per author. Furthermore, the high methodological quality subnetwork was highly compartmentalized, with several modules representing few poorly interconnected communities. In conclusion, structural differences in author-paper affiliation network may influence the methodological quality of SRs and MAs on psoriasis. As the author-paper affiliation network structure affects study quality in this research field, authors who maintain an appropriate balance

  13. Report on Use of a Methodology for Commissioning and Quality Assurance of a VMAT System

    OpenAIRE

    Mayo, Charles; Fong de los Santos, Luis; Kruse, Jon; Blackwell, Charles R.; McLemore, Luke B.; Pafundi, Deanna; Stoker, Joshua; Herman, Michael

    2013-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Results of use of methodology for VMAT commissioning and quality assurance, utilizing both control point tests and dosimetric measurements are presented. METHODS AND MATERIALS: A generalizable, phantom measurement approach is used to characterize the accuracy of the measurement system. Correction for angular response of the measurement system and inclusion of couch structures are used to characterize the full range gantry angles desirable for clinical plans. A dose based daily Q...

  14. APPLICATION OF LOT QUALITY ASSURANCE SAMPLING FOR ASSESSING DISEASE CONTROL PROGRAMMES - EXAMINATION OF SOME METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES

    OpenAIRE

    T. R. RAMESH RAO

    2011-01-01

    Lot Quality Assurance Sampling (LQAS), a statistical tool in industrial setup, has been in use since 1980 for monitoring and evaluation of programs on disease control / immunization status among children / health workers performance in health system. While conducting LQAS in the field, there are occasions, even after due care of design, there are practical and methodological issues to be addressed before it is recommended for implementation and intervention. LQAS is applied under the assumpti...

  15. A methodology to improve higher education quality using the quality function deployment and analytic hierarchy process

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Raharjo, H.; Xie, M.; Goh, T.N.; Brombacher, A.C.

    2007-01-01

    In order to formulate an effective strategic plan in a customer-driven education context, it is important to recognize who the customers are and what they want. Using Quality Function Deployment (QFD), this information can be translated into strategies to achieve customer satisfaction. Since the

  16. Quality of life after ischemic stroke varies in western countries: data from the tinzaparin in Acute Ischaemic Stroke Trial (TAIST).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sprigg, Nikola; Gray, Laura J; Bath, Philip M W; Christensen, Hanne; De Deyn, Peter Paul; Leys, Didier; O'Neill, Desmond; Ringelstein, E Bernd

    2012-10-01

    Functional outcome after stroke varies significantly between countries. However, whether health-related quality of life (QoL) after stroke also differs between countries is unknown. TAIST was a randomised controlled trial assessing the safety and efficacy of tinzaparin versus aspirin in 1484 patients with acute ischaemic stroke across 11 countries. Countries were grouped into 5 geographic regions: British Isles (Ireland and UK), Franco (Belgium and France), North America (Canada), northwest Europe (Germany and The Netherlands), and Scandinavia (Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden). QoL was measured at 6 months using the Short-Form 36 (SF-36) health survey. The relationship between region and QoL was assessed relative to the British Isles using linear regression adjusted for case mix, service quality variables, and treatment assignment. A total of 1220 survivors were included in this analysis. Significant differences in QoL were identified between countries and regions; northwest Europe rated their QoL highest in terms of physical functioning (20.3; 95% confidence interval [CI] 10.8-29.8), bodily pain (12.3; 95% CI, 2.7-22.0), and vitality (9.0; 95% CI, 1.1-16.9). Franco countries reported the lowest QoL for emotional role (-17.9; 95% CI, -32.6 to -3.3) and mental health (-11.2; 95% CI, -18.2 to -4.3). The British Isles rated QoL lowest for physical and social functioning. Our data indicate that QoL varies considerably among countries and regions, even when adjusted for prognostic case mix and care quality variables. How different case mixes and healthcare systems might contribute to these findings merits further investigation. Copyright © 2012 National Stroke Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Systematic Review of the Methodology Quality in Lung Cancer Screening Guidelines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiang LI

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Background and objective Lung cancer is the most common malignancy and screening can decrease the mortality. High quality screening guideline is necessary and important for effective work. Our study is to review and evaluate the basic characteristics and methodology quality of the current global lung cancer screening guidelines so as to provide useful information for domestic study in the future. Methods Electronic searches were done in English and Chinese databases including PubMed, the Cochrane Library, Web of Science, Embase, CNKI, CBM, Wanfang, and some cancer official websites. Articles were screened according to the predefined inclusion and exclusion criteria by two researchers. The quality of guidelines was assessed by AGREE II. Results At last, a total of 11 guidelines with methodology were included. The guidelines were issued mainly by USA (81%. Canada and China developed one, respectively. As for quality, the average score in the “Scale and objective” of all guidelines was 80, the average score in the “Participants” was 52, the average score in the “rigorism” was 50, the average score in the “clarity” was 76, the average score in the “application” was 43 and the average score in the “independence” was 59. The highest average score was found in 2013 and 2015. Canada guideline had higher quality in six domains. 7 guidelines were evaluated as A level. Conclusion The number of clinical guidelines showed an increasing trend. Most guidelines were issued by developed countries with heavy burden. Multi-country contribution to one guideline was another trend. Evidence-based methodology was accepted globally in the guideline development.

  18. METHODOLOGY OF DETERMINATION OF QUALITY INDEX OF MAINTENANCE SERVICE SYSTEM OF POWER EQUIPMENT OF TRACTION SUBSTATIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.O. Matusevych

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. The purpose of this paper is development of methodology for definition of a quality system of maintenance and repair (M and P power equipment of traction substations (TS of electrified railways operating under conditions of uncertainty based on expert information. Methodology. The basic tenets of the theory of fuzzy sets and marks, linguistic and interval estimates of experts were applied to solve this problem. Results. Analysis of the existing diversity of approaches to development of modern methods of improvement of M and P allows us to conclude that the improvement in the quality of the system is achieved by solving individual problems increase the operational reliability of power equipment of traction substations in the following main interrelated areas. There are technical, economic and organizational. The basis of the quality evaluation system is initial data and expertise developed version of the document formalized quality evaluation of electrical equipment of traction substations by experts. The choice of determining the level of Quality service system based on the marks, linguistic and interval estimates of experts, which are reflected in quantitative and / or qualitative form was done. The possible options for expert data presentation and their corresponding quantitative methods of calculating the integral index of quality improvement system maintenance and P of traction substations were described. The methodology and the method of assessing the quality of system maintenance and P of TS allows quickly respond to changing operating conditions of power equipment of traction substations, and to determine the most effective strategies for maintenance of electrical and P TS under conditions of uncertainty functioning distance electricity. Originality. The method of a systematic approach to improve the quality of the system maintenance and P of power equipment of traction substation under conditions of uncertainty based on expert

  19. Relationships between abstract features and methodological quality explained variations of social media activity derived from systematic reviews about psoriasis interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruano, J; Aguilar-Luque, M; Isla-Tejera, B; Alcalde-Mellado, P; Gay-Mimbrera, J; Hernandez-Romero, José Luis; Sanz-Cabanillas, J L; Maestre-López, B; González-Padilla, M; Carmona-Fernández, P J; Gómez-García, F; García-Nieto, A Vélez

    2018-05-24

    The aim of this study was to describe the relationship among abstract structure, readability, and completeness, and how these features may influence social media activity and bibliometric results, considering systematic reviews (SRs) about interventions in psoriasis classified by methodological quality. Systematic literature searches about psoriasis interventions were undertaken on relevant databases. For each review, methodological quality was evaluated using the Assessing the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) tool. Abstract extension, structure, readability, and quality and completeness of reporting were analyzed. Social media activity, which consider Twitter and Facebook mention counts, as well as Mendeley readers and Google scholar citations were obtained for each article. Analyses were conducted to describe any potential influence of abstract characteristics on review's social media diffusion. We classified 139 intervention SRs as displaying high/moderate/low methodological quality. We observed that abstract readability of SRs has been maintained high for last 20 years, although there are some differences based on their methodological quality. Free-format abstracts were most sensitive to the increase of text readability as compared with more structured abstracts (IMRAD or 8-headings), yielding opposite effects on their quality and completeness depending on the methodological quality: a worsening in low quality reviews and an improvement in those of high-quality. Both readability indices and PRISMA for Abstract total scores showed an inverse relationship with social media activity and bibliometric results in high methodological quality reviews but not in those of lower quality. Our results suggest that increasing abstract readability must be specially considered when writing free-format summaries of high-quality reviews, because this fact correlates with an improvement of their completeness and quality, and this may help to achieve broader

  20. Factor Analysis in Assessing the Research Methodology Quality of Systematic Reviews

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrada Elena URDA-CÎMPEAN

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Many high quality systematic reviews available from medical journals, data bases and other electronic sources differ in quality and provide different answers to the same question. The literature recommended the use of a checklist type approach, which exceeds many of the problems associated with measurements. Aim: This study proposes to identify in a checklist type approach the most commonly used factors (from a methodological point of view in assessing the quality of systematic reviews, and then mirror the actual stage of medical writing. We want to analyze the factors’ occurrence and / or their development in the text and in the abstract of systematic reviews published in 2011. Methods: The present study randomly selected only free full text systematic reviews published in 2011, systematic reviews found in Pubmed and in Cochrane Database. The most commonly used factors were identified in PRISMA statement and quality measurement tools. Results: The evaluated systematic reviews mentioned or developed several of the factors studied. Only 78% of the papers surveyed have used the correct IMRAD format and 59% of them have mentioned the sample size used. The correspondence between the content of the paper and its abstract is summarized in the proportion of 54.63% and 51.85% for the two sets of factors, and it can lead to scarce appreciation of the article provided that only abstracts are read. Conclusions: Researchers do not properly take into consideration scientific articles and assessment tools used for quality evaluation. They should place more value over methodological factors which help assess systematic review quality, while journals form the only party who can enforce quality standards in medical writing.

  1. The implementation of the Quality Costs Methodology in the Public Transport Enterprise in Macedonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeta Mitreva

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The implementation of TQM (Total Quality Management strategy in the public transport enterprises in Macedonia means improving the quality of services through examination of business processes not just in terms of defining, improvement and design of the process, but also improvement of productivity and optimization of the costs of quality. The purpose of this study is to point out the importance of determining the quality of the transport services, its methods, and techniques for measurement of the optimization of business processes in particular. The analysis of the quality costs when providing transport services can help managers to understand the impact of poor quality on the financial results and the bad image it gives to the enterprise. In this study, we proposed and applied the model for better performance and higher efficiency of the transport enterprise, through the optimization of business processes, change in the corporate culture and use of the complete business potentials. The need for this methodology was imposed as a result of the analysis made in the company in terms of whether is it doing an analysis on the costs of quality or not. The benefits from the utilization of this model will not only lead to increasing the business performance of the transport enterprise, but this model will also serve as a driving force for continuous improvements to the satisfaction of all stakeholders.

  2. The Methodological Approaches to Formation of the Internal System of Quality of Education of Higher Education Institution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doronin Stepan A.

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The necessity of creation of a national conception of formation of the internal system of quality assurance of higher education institutions with obligatory introduction of methodological approach in its structure is substantiated; the variant of its terminological provision with clarification of the content of concepts of «quality of education», «internal system of quality of education», «methodological approach» is proposed; positioning of the approach in the system of other standard scientific instruments (method, methodology, program, algorithm is done; arguments for the orientation of the methodology of formation of the internal system of quality assurance of higher education institutions towards the socio-cultural model of paradigm are provided; a hierarchical classification of methodological approaches with allocation of the philosophical, scientific, concrete-scientific, technological levels and the characteristics of their purpose and contents is presented.

  3. Quality at the source (QATS) system design under six sigma methodology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aguirre, F; Ballasteros, I; Maricalva, J [Emperesa Nacional del Uranio, S.A. (ENUSA), Nuclear Fuel Manufacturing Plant, Juzbado, Salamanca (Spain)

    2000-07-01

    One of the main objectives in the manufacturing of fuel assemblies, is to fulfill the customer expectations with a product that assures its reliability during its stay in the NPP. By mean of the QATS System design under 6-Sigma methodology, all the customer requirements are included in the product specifications and drawings. Product characteristics and process variables are classified and process capability is evaluated. All this information permits to identify CTQ's (Critical to Quality) product characteristics and process variables, and to define a quality system (QATS) based in the process and on-line characteristics control handled by the manufacturing workers. At the end, this system ensures a continuous product quality improvement, and a strong commitment with the customer requirements. (author)

  4. Quality at the source (QATS) system design under six sigma methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aguirre, F.; Ballasteros, I.; Maricalva, J.

    2000-01-01

    One of the main objectives in the manufacturing of fuel assemblies, is to fulfill the customer expectations with a product that assures its reliability during its stay in the NPP. By mean of the QATS System design under 6-Sigma methodology, all the customer requirements are included in the product specifications and drawings. Product characteristics and process variables are classified and process capability is evaluated. All this information permits to identify CTQ's (Critical to Quality) product characteristics and process variables, and to define a quality system (QATS) based in the process and on-line characteristics control handled by the manufacturing workers. At the end, this system ensures a continuous product quality improvement, and a strong commitment with the customer requirements. (author)

  5. Development of a methodology for automated assessment of the quality of digitized images in mammography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santana, Priscila do Carmo

    2010-01-01

    The process of evaluating the quality of radiographic images in general, and mammography in particular, can be much more accurate, practical and fast with the help of computer analysis tools. The purpose of this study is to develop a computational methodology to automate the process of assessing the quality of mammography images through techniques of digital imaging processing (PDI), using an existing image processing environment (ImageJ). With the application of PDI techniques was possible to extract geometric and radiometric characteristics of the images evaluated. The evaluated parameters include spatial resolution, high-contrast detail, low contrast threshold, linear detail of low contrast, tumor masses, contrast ratio and background optical density. The results obtained by this method were compared with the results presented in the visual evaluations performed by the Health Surveillance of Minas Gerais. Through this comparison was possible to demonstrate that the automated methodology is presented as a promising alternative for the reduction or elimination of existing subjectivity in the visual assessment methodology currently in use. (author)

  6. Methodology for Air Quality Forecast Downscaling from Regional- to Street-Scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baklanov, Alexander; Nuterman, Roman; Mahura, Alexander; Amstrup, Bjarne; Hansen Saas, Bent; Havskov Sørensen, Jens; Lorenzen, Thomas; Weismann, Jakob

    2010-05-01

    The most serious air pollution events occur in cities where there is a combination of high population density and air pollution, e.g. from vehicles. The pollutants can lead to serious human health problems, including asthma, irritation of the lungs, bronchitis, pneumonia, decreased resistance to respiratory infections, and premature death. In particular air pollution is associated with increase in cardiovascular disease and lung cancer. In 2000 WHO estimated that between 2.5 % and 11 % of total annual deaths are caused by exposure to air pollution. However, European-scale air quality models are not suited for local forecasts, as their grid-cell is typically of the order of 5 to 10km and they generally lack detailed representation of urban effects. Two suites are used in the framework of the EC FP7 project MACC (Monitoring of Atmosphere Composition and Climate) to demonstrate how downscaling from the European MACC ensemble to local-scale air quality forecast will be carried out: one will illustrate capabilities for the city of Copenhagen (Denmark); the second will focus on the city of Bucharest (Romania). This work is devoted to the first suite, where methodological aspects of downscaling from regional (European/ Denmark) to urban scale (Copenhagen), and from the urban down to street scale. The first results of downscaling according to the proposed methodology are presented. The potential for downscaling of European air quality forecasts by operating urban and street-level forecast models is evaluated. This will bring a strong support for continuous improvement of the regional forecast modelling systems for air quality in Europe, and underline clear perspectives for the future regional air quality core and downstream services for end-users. At the end of the MACC project, requirements on "how-to-do" downscaling of European air-quality forecasts to the city and street levels with different approaches will be formulated.

  7. Methodology for oversizing marginal quality riprap for erosion control at uranium mill tailings sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Staub, W.P.; Abt, S.R.

    1987-01-01

    Properly selected and oversized local sources of riprap may provide superior erosion protection compared with revegetation at a number of uranium mill tailings sites in arid regions of the United States. Whereas highly durable rock is appropriate for protecting diversion channels to the height of the 5-year flood, marginal quality rock may be adequate for protecting infrequently flooded side slopes of diversion channels, tailings embankments and caps. Marginal quality rock may require oversizing to guarantee that design size specifications are met at the end of the performance period (200 to 1000 years). This paper discusses a methodology for oversizing marginal quality rock. Results of cyclic freezing and thawing tests are used to determine oversizing requirements as functions of the performance period and environment. Test results show that marginal quality rock may be used in frequently saturated areas but in some cases oversizing will be substantial and in other cases marginal quality rock may be disqualified. Oversizing of marginal quality rock appears to be a practical reality in occasionally saturated areas (between the 5-year and 100-year floods). Furthermore, oversizing will not generally be required on slopes from the 100-year flood. 6 refs., 4 tabs

  8. The reporting characteristics and methodological quality of Cochrane reviews about health policy research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiu-xia, Li; Ya, Zheng; Yao-long, Chen; Ke-hu, Yang; Zong-jiu, Zhang

    2015-04-01

    The systematic review has increasingly become a popular tool for researching health policy. However, due to the complexity and diversity in the health policy research, it has also encountered more challenges. We set out the Cochrane reviews on health policy research as a representative to provide the first examination of epidemiological and descriptive characteristics as well as the compliance of methodological quality with the AMSTAR. 99 reviews were included by inclusion criteria, 73% of which were Implementation Strategies, 15% were Financial Arrangements and 12% were Governance Arrangements; involved Public Health (34%), Theoretical Exploration (18%), Hospital Management (17%), Medical Insurance (12%), Pharmaceutical Policy (9%), Community Health (7%) and Rural Health (2%). Only 39% conducted meta-analysis, and 49% reported being updates, and none was rated low methodological quality. Our research reveals that the quantity and quality of the evidence should be improved, especially Financial Arrangements and Governance Arrangements involved Rural Health, Health Care Reform and Health Equity, etc. And the reliability of AMSTAR needs to be tested in larger range in this field. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Methodology for Assessing the Quality of Agribusiness Activity Based on the Environmentally Responsible Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Antonovna Anfinogentova

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The article is devoted to the research and development of quality evaluation methods of agro-industrial enterprises activity in the regional economy with the use of the ecological approach. The hypothesis of the study is that the activity of the economic entities (as well as of agribusiness must be assessed not only in the context of economic efficiency and effectiveness, but also in the context of environmental ethics and environmental aggression. As the initial data, we have used the indicators of economic statistics of Russian agrarian-oriented regions, as well as the data received from management reporting on the sample of enterprises of three regions (the Belgorod and Moscow regions, Krasnodar Territory. The article offers the economic and mathematical approach for measuring the level of the environmental responsibility of agro-industrial enterprises on the basic formula of the Mandelbrot set and statistical indicator of Hurst. Our scientific contribution is the development of a modified methodology for assessing the quality of the activity of agro-industrial enterprises using the parameter characterizing the level of environmental ethics and environmental aggression of these entities. The main result of the study is the approbation of the method, which has shown its practical applicability and relative coherence with certain indicators of regional ecological statistics. The proposed method is characterized by the integration of the different mathematical approaches and as an adaptive assessment tool that can be used to assess the quality of the activity of both agro-industrial enterprises and enterprises of other industries and fields of the economy. In the further works, the authors plan to develop methodological approaches to the assessment of the quality of agro-industrial products. At the same time, the main attention will be paid to the ecological and social component of the quality.

  10. Methodological review of the quality of reach out and read: does it "work"?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeager Pelatti, Christina; Pentimonti, Jill M; Justice, Laura M

    2014-04-01

    A considerable percentage of American children and adults fail to learn adequate literacy skills and read below a third grade level. Shared book reading is perhaps the single most important activity to prepare young children for success in reading. The primary objective of this manuscript was to critically review the methodological quality of Read Out and Read (ROR), a clinically based literacy program/intervention that teaches parents strategies to incorporate while sharing books with children as a method of preventing reading difficulties and academic struggles. A PubMed search was conducted. Articles that met three criteria were considered. First, the study must be clinically based and include parent contact with a pediatrician. Second, parental counseling ("anticipatory guidance") about the importance of parent-child book reading must be included. Third, only experimental or quasi-experimental studies were included; no additional criteria were used. Published articles from any year and peer-reviewed journal were considered. Study quality was determined using a modified version of the Downs and Black (1998) checklist assessing four categories: (1) Reporting, (2) External Validity, (3) Internal Validity-Bias, and (4) Internal Validity-Confounding. We were also interested in whether quality differed based on study design, children's age, sample size, and study outcome. Eleven studies met the inclusion criteria. The overall quality of evidence was variable across all studies; Reporting and External Validity categories were relatively strong while methodological concerns were found in the area of internal validity. Quality scores differed on the four study characteristics. Implications related to clinical practice and future studies are discussed.

  11. Methodological quality of meta-analyses on treatments for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a cross-sectional study using the AMSTAR (Assessing the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews) tool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Robin S T; Wu, Xinyin; Yuan, Jinqiu; Liu, Siya; Lai, Xin; Wong, Samuel Y S; Chung, Vincent C H

    2015-01-08

    Meta-analysis (MA) of randomised trials is considered to be one of the best approaches for summarising high-quality evidence on the efficacy and safety of treatments. However, methodological flaws in MAs can reduce the validity of conclusions, subsequently impairing the quality of decision making. To assess the methodological quality of MAs on COPD treatments. A cross-sectional study on MAs of COPD trials. MAs published during 2000-2013 were sampled from the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effect. Methodological quality was assessed using the validated AMSTAR (Assessing the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews) tool. Seventy-nine MAs were sampled. Only 18% considered the scientific quality of primary studies when formulating conclusions and 49% used appropriate meta-analytic methods to combine findings. The problems were particularly acute among MAs on pharmacological treatments. In 48% of MAs the authors did not report conflict of interest. Fifty-eight percent reported harmful effects of treatment. Publication bias was not assessed in 65% of MAs, and only 10% had searched non-English databases. The methodological quality of the included MAs was disappointing. Consideration of scientific quality when formulating conclusions should be made explicit. Future MAs should improve on reporting conflict of interest and harm, assessment of publication bias, prevention of language bias and use of appropriate meta-analytic methods.

  12. Effects of group music therapy on quality of life, affect, and participation in people with varying levels of dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solé, Carme; Mercadal-Brotons, Melissa; Galati, Adrián; De Castro, Mónica

    2014-01-01

    There is substantive literature reporting the importance and benefits of music and music therapy programs for older adults, and more specifically for those with dementia. However, few studies have focused on how these programs may contribute to quality of life. Objectives for this exploratory study were: (a) to evaluate the potential effect of group music therapy program participation on the quality of life of older people with mild, moderate, and severe dementia living in a nursing home; (b) to identify and analyze changes in affect and participation that take place during music therapy sessions; and (c) to suggest recommendations and strategies for the design of future music therapy studies with people in various stages of dementias. Sixteen participants (15 women; 1 man), with varying level of dementia participated in 12 weekly music therapy sessions. Based on Global Deterioration Scale (GDS) scores, phases of cognitive function were as follows: mild (n = 9; GDS 3-4), moderate (n = 5; GDS 5), and severe (n = 2; GDS 6-7). Data were collected using the GENCAT scale on Quality of Life. Sessions 1, 6, and 12 were also video recorded for post-hoc analysis of facial affect and participation behaviors. There was no significant difference in quality of life scores from pre to posttest (z = -0.824; p =0.410). However, there was a significant improvement in median subscale scores for Emotional Well-being (z = -2.176, p = 0.030), and significant worsening in median subscale scores for Interpersonal Relations (z =-2.074; p = 0.038) from pre to posttest. With regard to affect and participation, a sustained high level of participation was observed throughout the intervention program. Expressions of emotion remained low. Authors discuss implications of study findings to inform and improve future research in the areas of music therapy, quality of life, and individuals with dementia. © the American Music Therapy Association 2014. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e

  13. THE QUALITY IMPROVEMENT OF PRIMER PACKAGING PROCESS USING SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prima Ditahardiyani

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The implementation of Six Sigma has become a common theme in many organizations. This paper presents the Six Sigma methodology and its implementation in a primer packaging process of Cranberry drink. DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control approach is used to analyze and to improve the primer packaging process, which have high variability and defects output. After the improvement, the results showed that there was an increasing sigma level. However, it is not significantly and has not achieved the world standard quality, yet. Therefore, the implementation of Six Sigma in primer packaging process of Cranberry drink still has a room for doing a further research.

  14. The methodological quality of systematic reviews comparing temporomandibular joint disorder surgical and non-surgical treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasconcelos Belmiro CE

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJD are multifactor, complex clinical problems affecting approximately 60–70% of the general population, with considerable controversy about the most effective treatment. For example, reports claim success rates of 70% and 83% for non-surgical and surgical treatment, whereas other reports claim success rates of 40% to 70% for self-improvement without treatment. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to (1 identify systematic reviews comparing temporomandibular joint disorder surgical and non-surgical treatment, (2 evaluate their methodological quality, and (3 evaluate the evidence grade within the systematic reviews. Methods A search strategy was developed and implemented for MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, LILACS, and Brazilian Dentistry Bibliography databases. Inclusion criteria were: systematic reviews (± meta-analysis comparing surgical and non-surgical TMJD treatment, published in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, or German between the years 1966 and 2007(up to July. Exclusion criteria were: in vitro or animal studies; narrative reviews or editorials or editorial letters; and articles published in other languages. Two investigators independently selected and evaluated systematic reviews. Three different instruments (AMSTAR, OQAQ and CASP were used to evaluate methodological quality, and the results averaged. The GRADE instrument was used to evaluate the evidence grade within the reviews. Results The search strategy identified 211 reports; of which 2 were systematic reviews meeting inclusion criteria. The first review met 23.5 ± 6.0% and the second met 77.5 ± 12.8% of the methodological quality criteria (mean ± sd. In these systematic reviews between 9 and 15% of the trials were graded as high quality, and 2 and 8% of the total number of patients were involved in these studies. Conclusion The results indicate that in spite of the widespread impact of TMJD, and the multitude of

  15. Reporting and methodological quality of survival analysis in articles published in Chinese oncology journals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xiaoyan; Zhou, Xiaobin; Zhang, Yuan; Sun, Xiao; Liu, Haihua; Zhang, Yingying

    2017-12-01

    Survival analysis methods have gained widespread use in the filed of oncology. For achievement of reliable results, the methodological process and report quality is crucial. This review provides the first examination of methodological characteristics and reporting quality of survival analysis in articles published in leading Chinese oncology journals.To examine methodological and reporting quality of survival analysis, to identify some common deficiencies, to desirable precautions in the analysis, and relate advice for authors, readers, and editors.A total of 242 survival analysis articles were included to be evaluated from 1492 articles published in 4 leading Chinese oncology journals in 2013. Articles were evaluated according to 16 established items for proper use and reporting of survival analysis.The application rates of Kaplan-Meier, life table, log-rank test, Breslow test, and Cox proportional hazards model (Cox model) were 91.74%, 3.72%, 78.51%, 0.41%, and 46.28%, respectively, no article used the parametric method for survival analysis. Multivariate Cox model was conducted in 112 articles (46.28%). Follow-up rates were mentioned in 155 articles (64.05%), of which 4 articles were under 80% and the lowest was 75.25%, 55 articles were100%. The report rates of all types of survival endpoint were lower than 10%. Eleven of 100 articles which reported a loss to follow-up had stated how to treat it in the analysis. One hundred thirty articles (53.72%) did not perform multivariate analysis. One hundred thirty-nine articles (57.44%) did not define the survival time. Violations and omissions of methodological guidelines included no mention of pertinent checks for proportional hazard assumption; no report of testing for interactions and collinearity between independent variables; no report of calculation method of sample size. Thirty-six articles (32.74%) reported the methods of independent variable selection. The above defects could make potentially inaccurate

  16. Water Quality Research Program: Development of Unstructured Grid Linkage Methodology and Software for CE-QUAL-ICM

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chapman, Raymond

    1997-01-01

    This study was conducted for the purpose of developing a methodology and associated software for linking hydrodynamic output from the RMAlO finite element model to the CE-QUAL-ICM finite volume water quality model...

  17. The HAZOP methodology applied to the study of the quality and the productivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angel G, J.C.

    1996-01-01

    This article makes reference to an adaptation of the method HAZOP, used in Administration of Risks, to the study and solution of problems related with the quality and the productivity of matters cousins, processes, products and services. The described methodology, it is based in the definition of, intentions, or objectives for each part of the process, sub-process, product or service, with the purpose of finding, deviations, or problems of quality or productivity with the use of words g uide . It thinks about that each deviation should be analyzed for the determination of its causes and consequences, with the purpose of defining the corrective pertinent actions. The work of interdisciplinary groups intends as an unavoidable requirement, the same as the will of its members to make the things better every day

  18. Oxidative stability and ignition quality of algae derived methyl esters containing varying levels of methyl eicosapentaenoate and methyl docosahexaenoate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucy, Harrison

    Microalgae is currently receiving strong consideration as a potential biofuel feedstock to help meet the advanced biofuels mandate of the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act because of its theoretically high yield (gallons/acre/year) in comparison to current terrestrial feedstocks. Additionally, microalgae also do not compete with food and can be cultivated with wastewater on non-arable land. Microalgae lipids can be converted into a variety of biofuels including fatty acid methyl esters (e.g. FAME biodiesel), renewable diesel, renewable gasoline, or jet fuel. For microalgae derived FAME, the fuel properties will be directly related to the fatty acid composition of the lipids produced by the given microalgae strain. Several microalgae species under consideration for wide scale cultivation, such as Nannochloropsis, produce lipids with fatty acid compositions containing substantially higher quantities of long chainpolyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) in comparison to terrestrial feedstocks. It is expected that increased levels of LC-PUFA will be problematic in terms of meeting all of the current ASTM specifications for biodiesel. For example, it is known that oxidative stability and cetane number decrease with increasing levels of LC-PUFA. However, these same LC-PUFA fatty acids, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA: C20:5) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA: C22:6) are known to have high nutritional value thereby making separation of these compounds economically attractive. Given the uncertainty in the future value of these LC-PUFA compounds and the economic viability of the separation process, the goal of this study was to examine the oxidative stability and ignition quality of algae-based FAME with varying levels of EPA and DHA removal. Oxidative stability tests were conducted at a temperature of 110°C and airflow of 10 L/h using a Metrohm 743 Rancimat with automatic induction period determination following the EN 14112 Method from the ASTM D6751 and EN 14214

  19. Quality assurance and quality control methodologies used within the austrian UV monitoring network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mario, B.

    2004-01-01

    The Austrian UVB monitoring network is operational since 1997. Nine detectors for measuring erythemally weighted solar UV irradiance are distributed over Austria in order to cover the main populated areas as well as different levels of altitude. The detectors are calibrated to indicate the UV-Index, the internationally agreed unit for erythemally weighted solar UV irradiance. Calibration is carried out in the laboratory for determination of spectral sensitivity of each detector, and under the sun for absolute comparison with a well-calibrated, double-monochromator spectro-radiometer. For the conversion from detector-weighted units to erythemally weighted units a lookup table is used, which is calculated using a radiative transfer model and which reflects the dependence of the conversion on the solar zenith angle and total ozone content of the atmosphere. The uncertainty of the calibration is about ±7%, dominated by the uncertainty of the calibration lamp for the spectro-radiometer (±4%). The long-term stability of this type of detectors has been found to be not satisfactory. Therefore, routinely every year all detectors are completely re-calibrated. Variations of the calibration factors up to ±10% are found. Thus, during routine operation, several measures take place for quality control. The measured data are compared to results of model calculations with a radiative transfer model, where clear sky and an aerosol-free atmosphere are assumed. At each site, the UV data are also compared with data from a co-located pyrano-meter measuring total solar irradiance. These two radiation quantities are well correlated, especially on clear days and when the ozone content is taken into account. If suspicious measurements are found for one detector in the network, a well-calibrated travelling reference detector of the same type is set up side-by-side, allowing the identification of relative differences of ∼3%. If necessary, a recalibration is carried out. As the main aim

  20. Evaluation of the coat quality of sustained release pellets by individual pellet dissolution methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Min; Liew, Celine Valeria; Heng, Paul Wan Sia

    2015-01-15

    This study explored the application of 400-DS dissolution apparatus 7 for individual pellet dissolution methodology by a design of experiment approach and compared its capability with that of the USP dissolution apparatus 1 and 2 for differentiating the coat quality of sustained release pellets. Drug loaded pellets were prepared by extrusion-spheronization from powder blends comprising 50%, w/w metformin, 25%, w/w microcrystalline cellulose and 25%, w/w lactose, and then coated with ethyl cellulose to produce sustained release pellets with 8% and 10%, w/w coat weight gains. Various pellet properties were investigated, including cumulative drug release behaviours of ensemble and individual pellets. When USP dissolution apparatus 1 and 2 were used for drug release study of the sustained release pellets prepared, floating and clumping of pellets were observed and confounded the release profiles of the ensemble pellets. Hence, the release profiles obtained did not characterize the actual drug release from individual pellet and the applicability of USP dissolution apparatus 1 and 2 to evaluate the coat quality of sustained release pellets was limited. The cumulative release profile of individual pellet using the 400-DS dissolution apparatus 7 was found to be more precise at distinguishing differences in the applied coat quality. The dip speed and dip interval of the reciprocating holder were critical operational parameters of 400-DS dissolution apparatus 7 that affected the drug release rate of a sustained release pellet during the individual dissolution study. The individual dissolution methodology using the 400-DS dissolution apparatus 7 is a promising technique to evaluate the individual pellet coat quality without the influence of confounding factors such as pellet floating and clumping observed during drug release test with dissolution apparatus 1 and 2, as well as to facilitate the elucidation of the actual drug release mechanism conferred by the applied sustained

  1. A new transmission methodology for quality assurance in radiotherapy based on radiochromic film measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    do Amaral, Leonardo L.; Pavoni, Juliana F.; Sampaio, Francisco; Netto, Thomaz Ghilardi

    2015-01-01

    Despite individual quality assurance (QA) being recommended for complex techniques in radiotherapy (RT) treatment, the possibility of errors in dose delivery during therapeutic application has been verified. Therefore, it is fundamentally important to conduct in vivo QA during treatment. This work presents an in vivo transmission quality control methodology, using radiochromic film (RCF) coupled to the linear accelerator (linac) accessory holder. This QA methodology compares the dose distribution measured by the film in the linac accessory holder with the dose distribution expected by the treatment planning software. The calculated dose distribution is obtained in the coronal and central plane of a phantom with the same dimensions of the acrylic support used for positioning the film but in a source‐to‐detector distance (SDD) of 100 cm, as a result of transferring the IMRT plan in question with all the fields positioned with the gantry vertically, that is, perpendicular to the phantom. To validate this procedure, first of all a Monte Carlo simulation using PENELOPE code was done to evaluate the differences between the dose distributions measured by the film in a SDD of 56.8 cm and 100 cm. After that, several simple dose distribution tests were evaluated using the proposed methodology, and finally a study using IMRT treatments was done. In the Monte Carlo simulation, the mean percentage of points approved in the gamma function comparing the dose distribution acquired in the two SDDs were 99.92%±0.14%. In the simple dose distribution tests, the mean percentage of points approved in the gamma function were 99.85%±0.26% and the mean percentage differences in the normalization point doses were −1.41%. The transmission methodology was approved in 24 of 25 IMRT test irradiations. Based on these results, it can be concluded that the proposed methodology using RCFs can be applied for in vivo QA in RT treatments. PACS number: 87.55.Qr, 87.55.km, 87.55.N‐ PMID

  2. Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews Published in the Urological Literature from 1998 to 2012.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbyons, Katherine; Han, Julia; Neuberger, Molly M; Dahm, Philipp

    2015-11-01

    Systematic reviews synthesize the current best evidence to address a clinical question. Given the growing emphasis on evidence-based clinical practice, systematic reviews are being increasingly sought after and published. We previously reported limitations in the methodological quality of 57 individual systematic reviews published from 1998 to 2008. We provide an update to our previous study, adding systematic reviews published from 2009 to 2012. We systematically searched PubMed® and hand searched the table of contents of 4 major urological journals to identify systematic reviews related to questions of prevention and therapy. Two independent reviewers with prior formal evidence-based medicine training assessed the methodological quality using the validated 11-point AMSTAR (A Measurement Tool to Assess Systematic Reviews) instrument. We performed predefined statistical hypothesis testing for differences by publication period (1998 to 2008 vs 2009 to 2012) and journal of publication. We performed statistical testing using SPSS®, version 23.0 with a 2-sided α of 0.05 using the Student t-test, ANOVA and the chi-square test. A total of 113 systematic reviews published from 2009 to 2012 met study inclusion criteria. The most common topics were oncology (44 reviews or 38.9%), voiding dysfunction (26 or 23.0%) and stones/endourology (13 or 11.5%). The largest contributor was European Urology (46 reviews or 40.7%), followed by BJU International (31 or 27.4%) and The Journal of Urology® (22 or 19.5%). The mean ± SD AMSTAR score for the 2009 to 2012 period was 5.3 ± 2.3 compared to 4.8 ± 2.0 for 1998 to 2008 with a mean difference of 0.5 (95% CI 0.2 to 1.2, p = 0.133). While the number of systematic reviews published in the urological literature has increased substantially, the methodological quality of these studies remains suboptimal. Systematic review authors and editors should make every effort to adhere to well established methodological standards to enhance

  3. Methodological comparison of marginal structural model, time-varying Cox regression, and propensity score methods : the example of antidepressant use and the risk of hip fracture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ali, M Sanni; Groenwold, Rolf H H; Belitser, Svetlana V; Souverein, Patrick C; Martín, Elisa; Gatto, Nicolle M; Huerta, Consuelo; Gardarsdottir, Helga; Roes, Kit C B; Hoes, Arno W; de Boer, Antonius; Klungel, Olaf H

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Observational studies including time-varying treatments are prone to confounding. We compared time-varying Cox regression analysis, propensity score (PS) methods, and marginal structural models (MSMs) in a study of antidepressant [selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)] use and

  4. A novel methodology for interpreting air quality measurements from urban streets using CFD modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solazzo, Efisio; Vardoulakis, Sotiris; Cai, Xiaoming

    2011-09-01

    In this study, a novel computational fluid dynamics (CFD) based methodology has been developed to interpret long-term averaged measurements of pollutant concentrations collected at roadside locations. The methodology is applied to the analysis of pollutant dispersion in Stratford Road (SR), a busy street canyon in Birmingham (UK), where a one-year sampling campaign was carried out between August 2005 and July 2006. Firstly, a number of dispersion scenarios are defined by combining sets of synoptic wind velocity and direction. Assuming neutral atmospheric stability, CFD simulations are conducted for all the scenarios, by applying the standard k-ɛ turbulence model, with the aim of creating a database of normalised pollutant concentrations at specific locations within the street. Modelled concentration for all wind scenarios were compared with hourly observed NO x data. In order to compare with long-term averaged measurements, a weighted average of the CFD-calculated concentration fields was derived, with the weighting coefficients being proportional to the frequency of each scenario observed during the examined period (either monthly or annually). In summary the methodology consists of (i) identifying the main dispersion scenarios for the street based on wind speed and directions data, (ii) creating a database of CFD-calculated concentration fields for the identified dispersion scenarios, and (iii) combining the CFD results based on the frequency of occurrence of each dispersion scenario during the examined period. The methodology has been applied to calculate monthly and annually averaged benzene concentration at several locations within the street canyon so that a direct comparison with observations could be made. The results of this study indicate that, within the simplifying assumption of non-buoyant flow, CFD modelling can aid understanding of long-term air quality measurements, and help assessing the representativeness of monitoring locations for population

  5. A methodology for texture feature-based quality assessment in nucleus segmentation of histopathology image

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Si Wen

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Context: Image segmentation pipelines often are sensitive to algorithm input parameters. Algorithm parameters optimized for a set of images do not necessarily produce good-quality-segmentation results for other images. Even within an image, some regions may not be well segmented due to a number of factors, including multiple pieces of tissue with distinct characteristics, differences in staining of the tissue, normal versus tumor regions, and tumor heterogeneity. Evaluation of quality of segmentation results is an important step in image analysis. It is very labor intensive to do quality assessment manually with large image datasets because a whole-slide tissue image may have hundreds of thousands of nuclei. Semi-automatic mechanisms are needed to assist researchers and application developers to detect image regions with bad segmentations efficiently. Aims: Our goal is to develop and evaluate a machine-learning-based semi-automated workflow to assess quality of nucleus segmentation results in a large set of whole-slide tissue images. Methods: We propose a quality control methodology, in which machine-learning algorithms are trained with image intensity and texture features to produce a classification model. This model is applied to image patches in a whole-slide tissue image to predict the quality of nucleus segmentation in each patch. The training step of our methodology involves the selection and labeling of regions by a pathologist in a set of images to create the training dataset. The image regions are partitioned into patches. A set of intensity and texture features is computed for each patch. A classifier is trained with the features and the labels assigned by the pathologist. At the end of this process, a classification model is generated. The classification step applies the classification model to unlabeled test images. Each test image is partitioned into patches. The classification model is applied to each patch to predict the patch

  6. Use of Proteomic Methodology in Optimization of Processing and Quality Control of Food of Animal Origin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dajana Gašo-Sokač

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Food of animal origin, namely meat, seafood, milk and milk products, is the main protein source in human nutrition. These types of food are very complex mixtures that contain proteins and other components, and proteomic techniques enable simultaneous study of several hundred up to several thousand proteins. The use of proteomic methodology for quality control and quality assessment in production as well as for the optimization and development of new manufacturing processes is presented. Newly developed, faster and more selective methods for sample preparation followed by more sensitive mass spectrometry for identification of less abundant proteins are discussed. These techniques will help to understand variations in production, and to find markers for food quality criteria. Furthermore, biologically active peptides in food of animal origin have recently been the focus of proteomic and peptidomic investigations. Isolation and production of biologically active proteins and peptides, including the low abundance ones, will also be a focus of future research. The use of proteomics, peptidomics and metabonomics for the determination of product quality and the detection of adulterations in meat production, seafood identification and in the production of milk and milk products is also discussed.

  7. Evaluation of the quality of the environmental participation: A methodological proposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zuluaga M, Clara; Carmona M, Sergio Ivan

    2004-01-01

    The advances in the way to sustainability are inseparable to the achievement in the citizenship construction, because the citizen condition is only realized in the proactive compromise with the territorial themes, the environmental management effectiveness requests high quality in their participative processes; therefore, pertinent tools are required to know and to appraise these processes. The goodness of these tools proceeds of their functionality in the knowledge of the participation quality purpose, that to environmental participative processes, is conceived in terms of legitimacy, representatively, democratization of the environmental knowledge, social cohesion, capacity of interlocution, and incidence in the decision making, with the coherent conceptual structure of these facets shapes the theoretical-methodological scaffolding that permits their joining in attributes, variables and indicators relatives to the characteristics of the participative planning processes, proper to account of the environmental participation quality. With the appraisal of the environmental participation quality in planning processes, supported in the integration of the constitutive attributes, is possible to obtain the index that facilitates their diagnostic and improvement

  8. Health-related quality of life deficits associated with varying degrees of disease severity in type 2 diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Majumdar Sumit R

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Diabetes is a chronic medical condition accompanied by a considerable health-related quality of life (HRQL burden. The purpose of this analysis was to use generic measures of HRQL to describe HRQL deficits associated with varying degrees of severity of type 2 diabetes. Methods The RAND-12 physical and mental health composites (PHC and MHC, respectively and Health Utilities Index Mark 3 (HUI3 were self-completed by 372 subjects enrolled in a prospective, controlled study of an intervention to improve care for individuals with type 2 diabetes in rural communities. Analysis of covariance was used to assess differences in HRQL according to disease severity and control of blood glucose. Disease severity was defined in terms of treatment intensity, emergency room visits and absenteeism from work specifically attributable to diabetes. To control for potential confounding, the analysis was adjusted for important sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. Results The PHC and MHC were significantly lower for individuals treated with insulin as compared to diet alone (PHC: 41.01 vs 45.11, MHC: 43.23 vs 47.00, p Conclusions We concluded that generic measures of HRQL captured deficits associated with more severe disease in type 2 diabetes.

  9. Why do morphological phylogenies vary in quality? An investigation based on the comparative history of lizard clades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, E N

    1990-05-22

    Phylogenies based on morphology vary considerably in their quality: some are robust and explicit with little conflict in the data set, whereas others are far more tenuous, with much conflict and many possible alternatives. The main primary reasons for untrue or inexplicit morphological phylogenies are: not enough characters developed between branching points, uncertain character polarity, poorly differentiated character states, homoplasy caused by parallelism or reversal, and extinction, which may remove species entirely from consideration and can make originally conflicting data sets misleadingly compatible, increasing congruence at the expense of truth. Extinction differs from other confounding factors in not being apparent either in the data set or in subsequent analysis. One possibility is that variation in the quality of morphological phylogenies has resulted from exposure to different ecological situations. To investigate this, it is necessary to compare the histories of the clades concerned. In the case of explicit morphological phylogenies, ecological and behavioural data can be integrated with them and it may then be possible to decide whether morphological characters are likely to have been elicited by the environments through which the clade has passed. The credibility of such results depends not only on the phylogeny being robust but also on its detailed topology: a pectinate phylogeny will often allow more certain and more explicit statements to be made about historical events. In the case of poor phylogenies, it is not possible to produce detailed histories, but they can be compared with robust phylogenies in the range of ecological situations occupied, and whether they occupy novel situations in comparison with their outgroups. LeQuesne testing can give information about niche homoplasy, and it may also be possible to see if morphological features are functionally associated with ecological parameters, even if the direction of change is unknown

  10. Development of a quality management system for borehole investigations. (1) Quality assurance and quality control methodology for hydraulic packer testing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takeuchi, Shinji; Kunimaru, Takanori; Ota, Kunio; Frieg, Bernd

    2011-01-01

    A quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) system for the hydraulic packer tests has been established based on the surface-based investigations at JAEA's underground research laboratories in Mizunami and Horonobe. The established QA/QC system covers field investigations (data acquisition) and data analysis. For the field investigations, the adopted procedure is selection of a test section based on a detail fluid logging and checking with tally list, followed by inspection of test tools such as pressure transducers and shut-in valves, etc., test method selection using a 'sequential hydraulic test' for deciding appropriate method, and finally data quality confirmation by pressure changes and derivatives on a log-log plots during testing. Test event logs should also be described during testing for traceability. For the test data analysis, a quick analysis for rough estimation of hydraulic parameters, and a detailed analysis using type curve and/or numerical analyses are conducted stepwise. The established QA/QC system has been applied to the recent borehole investigations and its efficiency has been confirmed. (author)

  11. СONTENTS OF THE METHODOLOGICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL SUPPORT OF THE EDUCATION QUALITY MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEM FOR FUTURE ECONOMISTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kostiantyn S. Khoruzhyi

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available In the article, the content and nature of organizational activities in scope of methodological and technological support of the education quality management information system (EQMIS for future economists are described. The content of the organizational activities for the implementation of methodological and technological support of EQMIS for future economists includes four stages (preparatory, instructional/adaptational, methodological/basic, as well as experimental/evaluational and contains a set of methodological and technological measures for each of the stages of the EQMIS implementation. A study of the pedagogical impact of the proposed methodology of using EQMIS in the formation of professional competence of economics students was also conducted. The main stages, methods and sequence of implementation arrangements for the methodological and technological support of EQMIS are defined.

  12. Abstract analysis method facilitates filtering low-methodological quality and high-bias risk systematic reviews on psoriasis interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-García, Francisco; Ruano, Juan; Aguilar-Luque, Macarena; Alcalde-Mellado, Patricia; Gay-Mimbrera, Jesús; Hernández-Romero, José Luis; Sanz-Cabanillas, Juan Luis; Maestre-López, Beatriz; González-Padilla, Marcelino; Carmona-Fernández, Pedro J; García-Nieto, Antonio Vélez; Isla-Tejera, Beatriz

    2017-12-29

    Article summaries' information and structure may influence researchers/clinicians' decisions to conduct deeper full-text analyses. Specifically, abstracts of systematic reviews (SRs) and meta-analyses (MA) should provide structured summaries for quick assessment. This study explored a method for determining the methodological quality and bias risk of full-text reviews using abstract information alone. Systematic literature searches for SRs and/or MA about psoriasis were undertaken on MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane database. For each review, quality, abstract-reporting completeness, full-text methodological quality, and bias risk were evaluated using Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses for abstracts (PRISMA-A), Assessing the Methodological Quality of Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR), and ROBIS tools, respectively. Article-, author-, and journal-derived metadata were systematically extracted from eligible studies using a piloted template, and explanatory variables concerning abstract-reporting quality were assessed using univariate and multivariate-regression models. Two classification models concerning SRs' methodological quality and bias risk were developed based on per-item and total PRISMA-A scores and decision-tree algorithms. This work was supported, in part, by project ICI1400136 (JR). No funding was received from any pharmaceutical company. This study analysed 139 SRs on psoriasis interventions. On average, they featured 56.7% of PRISMA-A items. The mean total PRISMA-A score was significantly higher for high-methodological-quality SRs than for moderate- and low-methodological-quality reviews. SRs with low-bias risk showed higher total PRISMA-A values than reviews with high-bias risk. In the final model, only 'authors per review > 6' (OR: 1.098; 95%CI: 1.012-1.194), 'academic source of funding' (OR: 3.630; 95%CI: 1.788-7.542), and 'PRISMA-endorsed journal' (OR: 4.370; 95%CI: 1.785-10.98) predicted PRISMA-A variability. Reviews with a

  13. [What is the methodological quality of articles on therapeutic procedures published in Cirugía Española?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manterola, Carlos; Busquets, Juli; Pascual, Marta; Grande, Luis

    2006-02-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the methodological quality of articles on therapeutic procedures published in Cirugía Española and to study its association with the publication year, center, and subject-matter. A bibliometric study that included all articles on therapeutic procedures published in Cirugía Española between 2001 and 2004 was performed. All kinds of clinical designs were considered, excluding editorials, review articles, letters to editor, and experimental studies. The variables analyzed were: year of publication, center, design, and methodological quality. Methodological quality was determined by a valid and reliable scale. Descriptive statistics (calculation of means, standard deviation and medians) and analytical statistics (Pearson's chi2, nonparametric, ANOVA and Bonferroni tests) were used. A total of 244 articles were studied (197 case series [81%], 28 cohort studies [12%], 17 clinical trials [7%], 1 cross sectional study and 1 case-control study [0.8%]). The studies were performed mainly in Catalonia and Murcia (22% and 16%, respectively). The most frequent subject areas were soft tissue and hepatobiliopancreatic surgery (23% and 19%, respectively). The mean and median of the methodological quality score calculated for the entire series was 10.2 +/- 3.9 points and 9.5 points, respectively. Methodological quality significantly increased by publication year (p < 0.001). An association between methodological quality and subject area was observed but no association was detected with the center performing the study. The methodological quality of articles on therapeutic procedures published in Cirugía Española between 2001 and 2004 is low. However, a statistically significant trend toward improvement was observed.

  14. Comparison of methodologic quality and study/report characteristics between quantitative clinical nursing and nursing education research articles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Barbara St Pierre; Nicholas, Jennifer; Kurrus, Jeffrey E

    2013-01-01

    To compare the methodologic quality and study/report characteristics between quantitative clinical nursing and nursing education research articles. The methodologic quality of quantitative nursing education research needs to advance to a higher level. Clinical research can provide guidance for nursing education to reach this level. One hundred quantitative clinical research articles from-high impact journals published in 2007 and 37 education research articles from high impact journals published in 2006 to 2007 were chosen for analysis. Clinical articles had significantly higher quality scores than education articles in three domains: number of institutions studied, type of data, and outcomes. The findings indicate three ways in which nursing education researchers can strengthen the methodologic quality of their quantitative research. With this approach, greater funding may be secured for advancing the science of nursing education.

  15. Inkjet printed large-area flexible circuits: a simple methodology for optimizing the printing quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Tao; Wu, Youwei; Shen, Xiaoqin; Lai, Wenyong; Huang, Wei

    2018-01-01

    In this work, a simple methodology was developed to enhance the patterning resolution of inkjet printing, involving process optimization as well as substrate modification and treatment. The line width of the inkjet-printed silver lines was successfully reduced to 1/3 of the original value using this methodology. Large-area flexible circuits with delicate patterns and good morphology were thus fabricated. The resultant flexible circuits showed excellent electrical conductivity as low as 4.5 Ω/□ and strong tolerance to mechanical bending. The simple methodology is also applicable to substrates with various wettability, which suggests a general strategy to enhance the printing quality of inkjet printing for manufacturing high-performance large-area flexible electronics. Project supported by the National Key Basic Research Program of China (Nos. 2014CB648300, 2017YFB0404501), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 21422402, 21674050), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (Nos. BK20140060, BK20130037, BK20140865, BM2012010), the Program for Jiangsu Specially-Appointed Professors (No. RK030STP15001), the Program for New Century Excellent Talents in University (No. NCET-13-0872), the NUPT "1311 Project" and Scientific Foundation (Nos. NY213119, NY213169), the Synergetic Innovation Center for Organic Electronics and Information Displays, the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD), the Leading Talent of Technological Innovation of National Ten-Thousands Talents Program of China, the Excellent Scientific and Technological Innovative Teams of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (No. TJ217038), the Program for Graduate Students Research and Innovation of Jiangsu Province (No. KYZZ16-0253), and the 333 Project of Jiangsu Province (Nos. BRA2017402, BRA2015374).

  16. Residency Training: Quality improvement projects in neurology residency and fellowship: applying DMAIC methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassardjian, Charles D; Williamson, Michelle L; van Buskirk, Dorothy J; Ernste, Floranne C; Hunderfund, Andrea N Leep

    2015-07-14

    Teaching quality improvement (QI) is a priority for residency and fellowship training programs. However, many medical trainees have had little exposure to QI methods. The purpose of this study is to review a rigorous and simple QI methodology (define, measure, analyze, improve, and control [DMAIC]) and demonstrate its use in a fellow-driven QI project aimed at reducing the number of delayed and canceled muscle biopsies at our institution. DMAIC was utilized. The project aim was to reduce the number of delayed muscle biopsies to 10% or less within 24 months. Baseline data were collected for 12 months. These data were analyzed to identify root causes for muscle biopsy delays and cancellations. Interventions were developed to address the most common root causes. Performance was then remeasured for 9 months. Baseline data were collected on 97 of 120 muscle biopsies during 2013. Twenty biopsies (20.6%) were delayed. The most common causes were scheduling too many tests on the same day and lack of fasting. Interventions aimed at patient education and biopsy scheduling were implemented. The effect was to reduce the number of delayed biopsies to 6.6% (6/91) over the next 9 months. Familiarity with QI methodologies such as DMAIC is helpful to ensure valid results and conclusions. Utilizing DMAIC, we were able to implement simple changes and significantly reduce the number of delayed muscle biopsies at our institution. © 2015 American Academy of Neurology.

  17. Environmental risk assessment of water quality in harbor areas: a new methodology applied to European ports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez, Aina G; Ondiviela, Bárbara; Puente, Araceli; Juanes, José A

    2015-05-15

    This work presents a standard and unified procedure for assessment of environmental risks at the contaminant source level in port aquatic systems. Using this method, port managers and local authorities will be able to hierarchically classify environmental hazards and proceed with the most suitable management actions. This procedure combines rigorously selected parameters and indicators to estimate the environmental risk of each contaminant source based on its probability, consequences and vulnerability. The spatio-temporal variability of multiple stressors (agents) and receptors (endpoints) is taken into account to provide accurate estimations for application of precisely defined measures. The developed methodology is tested on a wide range of different scenarios via application in six European ports. The validation process confirms its usefulness, versatility and adaptability as a management tool for port water quality in Europe and worldwide. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Comparison of tools for assessing the methodological quality of primary and secondary studies in health technology assessment reports in Germany

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walter, Ulla

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Health care policy background: Findings from scientific studies form the basis for evidence-based health policy decisions. Scientific background: Quality assessments to evaluate the credibility of study results are an essential part of health technology assessment reports and systematic reviews. Quality assessment tools (QAT for assessing the study quality examine to what extent study results are systematically distorted by confounding or bias (internal validity. The tools can be divided into checklists, scales and component ratings. Research questions: What QAT are available to assess the quality of interventional studies or studies in the field of health economics, how do they differ from each other and what conclusions can be drawn from these results for quality assessments? Methods: A systematic search of relevant databases from 1988 onwards is done, supplemented by screening of the references, of the HTA reports of the German Agency for Health Technology Assessment (DAHTA and an internet search. The selection of relevant literature, the data extraction and the quality assessment are carried out by two independent reviewers. The substantive elements of the QAT are extracted using a modified criteria list consisting of items and domains specific to randomized trials, observational studies, diagnostic studies, systematic reviews and health economic studies. Based on the number of covered items and domains, more and less comprehensive QAT are distinguished. In order to exchange experiences regarding problems in the practical application of tools, a workshop is hosted. Results: A total of eight systematic methodological reviews is identified as well as 147 QAT: 15 for systematic reviews, 80 for randomized trials, 30 for observational studies, 17 for diagnostic studies and 22 for health economic studies. The tools vary considerably with regard to the content, the performance and quality of operationalisation. Some tools do not only include the

  19. Comparison of tools for assessing the methodological quality of primary and secondary studies in health technology assessment reports in Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dreier, Maren; Borutta, Birgit; Stahmeyer, Jona; Krauth, Christian; Walter, Ulla

    2010-06-14

    HEALTH CARE POLICY BACKGROUND: Findings from scientific studies form the basis for evidence-based health policy decisions. Quality assessments to evaluate the credibility of study results are an essential part of health technology assessment reports and systematic reviews. Quality assessment tools (QAT) for assessing the study quality examine to what extent study results are systematically distorted by confounding or bias (internal validity). The tools can be divided into checklists, scales and component ratings. What QAT are available to assess the quality of interventional studies or studies in the field of health economics, how do they differ from each other and what conclusions can be drawn from these results for quality assessments? A systematic search of relevant databases from 1988 onwards is done, supplemented by screening of the references, of the HTA reports of the German Agency for Health Technology Assessment (DAHTA) and an internet search. The selection of relevant literature, the data extraction and the quality assessment are carried out by two independent reviewers. The substantive elements of the QAT are extracted using a modified criteria list consisting of items and domains specific to randomized trials, observational studies, diagnostic studies, systematic reviews and health economic studies. Based on the number of covered items and domains, more and less comprehensive QAT are distinguished. In order to exchange experiences regarding problems in the practical application of tools, a workshop is hosted. A total of eight systematic methodological reviews is identified as well as 147 QAT: 15 for systematic reviews, 80 for randomized trials, 30 for observational studies, 17 for diagnostic studies and 22 for health economic studies. The tools vary considerably with regard to the content, the performance and quality of operationalisation. Some tools do not only include the items of internal validity but also the items of quality of reporting and

  20. Methodological quality of systematic reviews in subfertility: a comparison of two different approaches.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivor Popovich

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Systematic reviews are used widely to guide health care decisions. Several tools have been created to assess systematic review quality. The measurement tool for assessing the methodological quality of systematic reviews known as the AMSTAR tool applies a yes/no score to eleven relevant domains of review methodology. This tool has been reworked so that each domain is scored based on a four point scale, producing R-AMSTAR. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We aimed to compare the AMSTAR and R-AMSTAR tools in assessing systematic reviews in the field of assisted reproduction for subfertility. All published systematic reviews on assisted reproductive technology, with the latest search for studies taking place from 2007-2011, were considered. Reviews that contained no included studies or considered diagnostic outcomes were excluded. Thirty each of Cochrane and non-Cochrane reviews were randomly selected from a search of relevant databases. Both tools were then applied to all sixty reviews. The results were converted to percentage scores and all reviews graded and ranked based on this. AMSTAR produced a much wider variation in percentage scores and achieved higher inter-rater reliability than R-AMSTAR according to kappa statistics. The average rating for Cochrane reviews was consistent between the two tools (88.3% for R-AMSTAR versus 83.6% for AMSTAR but inconsistent for non-Cochrane reviews (63.9% R-AMSTAR vs. 38.5% AMSTAR. In comparing the rankings generated between the two tools Cochrane reviews changed an average of 4.2 places, compared to 2.9 for non-Cochrane. CONCLUSION: R-AMSTAR provided greater guidance in the assessment of domains and produced quantitative results. However, there were many problems with the construction of its criteria and AMSTAR was much easier to apply consistently. We recommend that AMSTAR incorporates the findings of this study and produces additional guidance for its application in order to improve its reliability and

  1. A Model of Risk Analysis in Analytical Methodology for Biopharmaceutical Quality Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, Cleyton Lage; Herrera, Miguel Angel De La O; Lemes, Elezer Monte Blanco

    2018-01-01

    One key quality control parameter for biopharmaceutical products is the analysis of residual cellular DNA. To determine small amounts of DNA (around 100 pg) that may be in a biologically derived drug substance, an analytical method should be sensitive, robust, reliable, and accurate. In principle, three techniques have the ability to measure residual cellular DNA: radioactive dot-blot, a type of hybridization; threshold analysis; and quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Quality risk management is a systematic process for evaluating, controlling, and reporting of risks that may affects method capabilities and supports a scientific and practical approach to decision making. This paper evaluates, by quality risk management, an alternative approach to assessing the performance risks associated with quality control methods used with biopharmaceuticals, using the tool hazard analysis and critical control points. This tool provides the possibility to find the steps in an analytical procedure with higher impact on method performance. By applying these principles to DNA analysis methods, we conclude that the radioactive dot-blot assay has the largest number of critical control points, followed by quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and threshold analysis. From the analysis of hazards (i.e., points of method failure) and the associated method procedure critical control points, we conclude that the analytical methodology with the lowest risk for performance failure for residual cellular DNA testing is quantitative polymerase chain reaction. LAY ABSTRACT: In order to mitigate the risk of adverse events by residual cellular DNA that is not completely cleared from downstream production processes, regulatory agencies have required the industry to guarantee a very low level of DNA in biologically derived pharmaceutical products. The technique historically used was radioactive blot hybridization. However, the technique is a challenging method to implement in a quality

  2. Reducing DNACPR complaints to zero: designing and implementing a treatment escalation plan using quality improvement methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shermon, Elizabeth; Munglani, Laura; Oram, Sarah; William, Linda; Abel, Julian

    2017-01-01

    Do Not Attempt Resuscitation (DNAR)decisions have traditionally formed the basis of ceiling of care discussions. However, poor quality discussions can lead to high patient and relative dissatisfaction, generating hospital complaints. Treatment escalation plans (TEPs) aim to highlight the wider remit of treatment options with a focus on effective communication. We aimed to improve TEP discussions and documentation at Weston General Hospital by introducing a standardised form. We aimed to develop a TEP document to reduce resuscitation-related complaints by improving communication and documentation. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected over 2 years and used to develop plan-do-study-act (PDSA) cycles using quality improvement methodology. Main barriers to improvement included time constraints and clinician's resistance. Analysis of patient liaison services data showed a progressive reduction in complaints regarding resuscitation, with no complaints having been received for the final six months of the project. Through use of a standardised form including treatment prompts, the quality of discussions and plans improved. Qualitative feedback demonstrated increased patient and relative satisfaction. In addition, junior doctors report the plans are helpful when making out-of-hours decisions. Development of a user-friendly form to document patient-guided TEPs helped junior doctors to lead advanced care planning discussions. The use of PDSA cycles demonstrated improvement in the quality of forms, which in turn improved communication, documentation and satisfaction. Future developments could include involvement of specialist teams to ensure TEP forms remain relevant to all clinical areas. In addition, with widespread use of the TEP forms, the traditional tick-box DNAR could be replaced to focus on patient-led care planning.

  3. [Efficiency versus quality in the NHS, in Portugal: methodologies for evaluation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giraldes, Maria do Rosário

    2008-01-01

    To proceed to the evaluation of the efficiency and quality in the NHS, based in methodologies of evaluation of management, indicators of benchmarking and indicators of process and outcome. The 1980 and 1990 decades have seen the proliferation of all forms of process indicators as a way to control health services. It is not a coincidence that the increase in managed care has been accompanied by an explosion of process indicators, as it has happened in the health system of the USA. More recently the attention has turned away from measures of performance, which measure the process (what has been done) to those which measure outcomes (what was the result). Quality indicators have been developed in Europe, first to be used in hospitals, but also to be used in primary health care. Conceptually the justification for the introduction of process indicators comes from the principle that their use will reinforce a modification in the quality of the proceedings, which will give origin to better outcomes as well at population level, as resource saving. Outcome indicators compared with process indicators in health care shows that process indicators have the advantage of being more sensitive than outcome indicators to differences in the quality. Optimizing health care quality has the objective of establishing a quantitative relationship between the quality of the health services and cost-effectiveness. To identify quality indicators and benchmarking and to implement plans to measure the quality of health care. In a study made in a group of senior GP, in the UK, with the objective of determining which process indicators better reflect the quality of the services in primary health care services a Delphi method was used. Only seven indicators were chosen by 75% of the respondents: the percentage of eligible patients receiving cervical screening; the percentage of generic prescribing; the percentage of eligible patients receiving childhood immunization; the percentage of eligible

  4. Clinical audit, a valuable tool to improve quality of care: General methodology and applications in nephrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esposito, Pasquale; Dal Canton, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    Evaluation and improvement of quality of care provided to the patients are of crucial importance in the daily clinical practice and in the health policy planning and financing. Different tools have been developed, including incident analysis, health technology assessment and clinical audit. The clinical audit consist of measuring a clinical outcome or a process, against well-defined standards set on the principles of evidence-based medicine in order to identify the changes needed to improve the quality of care. In particular, patients suffering from chronic renal diseases, present many problems that have been set as topics for clinical audit projects, such as hypertension, anaemia and mineral metabolism management. Although the results of these studies have been encouraging, demonstrating the effectiveness of audit, overall the present evidence is not clearly in favour of clinical audit. These findings call attention to the need to further studies to validate this methodology in different operating scenarios. This review examines the principle of clinical audit, focusing on experiences performed in nephrology settings. PMID:25374819

  5. Methodological and Statistical Quality in Research Evaluating Nutritional Attitudes in Sports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouvelioti, Rozalia; Vagenas, George

    2015-12-01

    The assessment of dietary attitudes and behaviors provides information of interest to sports nutritionists. Although there has been little analysis of the quality of research undertaken in this field, there is evidence of a number of flaws and methodological concerns in some of the studies in the available literature. This review undertook a systematic assessment of the attributes of research assessing the nutritional knowledge and attitudes of athletes and coaches. Sixty questionnaire-based studies were identified by a search of official databases using specific key terms with subsequent analysis by certain inclusion-exclusion criteria. These studies were then analyzed using 33 research quality criteria related to the methods, questionnaires, and statistics used. We found that many studies did not provide information on critical issues such as research hypotheses (92%), the gaining of ethics approval (50%) or informed consent (35%), or acknowledgment of limitations in the implementation of studies or interpretation of data (72%). Many of the samples were nonprobabilistic (85%) and rather small (42%). Many questionnaires were of unknown origin (30%), validity (72%), and reliability (70%) and resulted in low (≤ 60%) response rates (38%). Pilot testing was not undertaken in 67% of the studies. Few studies dealt with sample size (2%), power (3%), assumptions (7%), confidence intervals (3%), or effect sizes (3%). Improving some of these problems and deficits may enhance future research in this field.

  6. Multi-attribute Evaluation of Website Quality in E-business Using an Integrated Fuzzy AHPTOPSIS Methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tolga Kaya

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Success of an e-business company is strongly associated with the relative quality of its website compared to that of its competitors. The purpose of this study is to propose a multi-attribute e-business website quality evaluation methodology based on a modified fuzzy TOPSIS approach. In the proposed methodology, weights of the evaluation criteria are generated by a fuzzy AHP procedure. In performance evaluation problems, the judgments of the experts may usually be vague in form. As fuzzy logic can successfully deal with this kind of uncertainty in human preferences, both classical TOPSIS and classical AHP procedures are implemented under fuzzy environment. The proposed TOPSIS-AHP methodology has successfully been applied to a multi-attribute website quality evaluation problem in Turkish e-business market. Nine sub-criteria under four main categories are used in the evaluation of the most popular e-business websites of Turkey. A sensitivity analysis is also provided.

  7. Social control of the quality of public services: Theory, methodology and results of empirical research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evgeny A. Kapoguzov

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The article reveals the theoretical and methodological aspect of the problem of social control in relation to the possibility of its implementation in the production of public services. The interdisciplinary nature of the discourse on the nature of social control is presented, the evolution of ideas about it in the framework of social science concepts is presented, and the relationship with related categories is revealed, in particular, "public control", "civil control". The evolution of essence is also traced the category "institutionalization", it is shown the lack of unambiguousness in its interpretation. The normative value of the institutionalization of social practices in the implementation of institutional design is presented, in particular, with regard to the improvement of the provision of public services. The barriers of institutionalization of social control (resource, information, institutional for quality of public services are characterized. The results of a mass survey of consumers of public services conducted in December 2016 in the Multifunctional Center (MFC of city Omsk are presented. Unlike other surveys and publications that only assess the level of customer satisfaction and do not give a detailed explanation of the attitude of consumers to the ongoing institutional changes, this paper presents an analysis of consumer attitudes and beliefs to meaningful attributes of the quality of public services on the one hand, and for various institutional alternatives of influence on the quality of public services on the other. According to the results of the mass survey, the low readiness for social action was established due to high transaction costs, the rational ignorance and a free-rider problem. The possibility of institutionalizing the practice of social action and setting up consumers for the creation of a specialized organization for the protection of consumer rights in the production of public services was discussed.

  8. Development of a calibration methodology for instruments used to interventional radiology quality control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miranda, Jurema Aparecida de

    2009-01-01

    Interventional radiology is the technique where X radiation images are used as a tool in the conduction of diagnostic or/and therapeutic procedures. The exposition times are long for both procedures, diagnostic and therapeutic, may cause serious injuries in the patient, and also contribute to the dose of the clinical staff. In Brazil there are not yet well established rules to determine the doses and to make the dosimetry in fluoroscopic beams. There is great interest in this study, in relation to the beam quality, the half-value-layer, and others parameters. In this work a Medicor Neo Diagnomax clinical X ray generator, fluoroscopy mode, was used to develop a calibration methodology for instruments used in interventional radiology quality control. One plane parallel ionization chamber PTW was used as monitor. The ionization chambers recommended for fluoroscopy measurements had been evaluated and calibrated in relation to the IPEN Calibration Laboratory reference ionization chamber. The RQR3, RQR5 and RQR7 radiation qualities and the specific ones for fluoroscopy, RQC3, RQC5 and RQC7, were established following the norm IEC 61267. All beams characteristics were determined. Ionization chambers positioning system and the acrylic phantoms to the entrance and exit doses determination were developed and constructed. The results obtained show air kerma rates of 4.5x10 -3 , 1.2x10 -2 and 1.9x10 -2 Gy/min for RQC3, RQC5 and RQC7 respectively. Tests with and without the collimation just after the monitor chamber, were carried out and the results showed a difference of +5.5%, +0.6% e + 0.8%, confirming the importance of the collimation use in these interventionist procedures. (author)

  9. Methodological comparison of marginal structural model, time-varying Cox regression, and propensity score methods: the example of antidepressant use and the risk of hip fracture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, M Sanni; Groenwold, Rolf H H; Belitser, Svetlana V; Souverein, Patrick C; Martín, Elisa; Gatto, Nicolle M; Huerta, Consuelo; Gardarsdottir, Helga; Roes, Kit C B; Hoes, Arno W; de Boer, Antonius; Klungel, Olaf H

    2016-03-01

    Observational studies including time-varying treatments are prone to confounding. We compared time-varying Cox regression analysis, propensity score (PS) methods, and marginal structural models (MSMs) in a study of antidepressant [selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)] use and the risk of hip fracture. A cohort of patients with a first prescription for antidepressants (SSRI or tricyclic antidepressants) was extracted from the Dutch Mondriaan and Spanish Base de datos para la Investigación Farmacoepidemiológica en Atención Primaria (BIFAP) general practice databases for the period 2001-2009. The net (total) effect of SSRI versus no SSRI on the risk of hip fracture was estimated using time-varying Cox regression, stratification and covariate adjustment using the PS, and MSM. In MSM, censoring was accounted for by inverse probability of censoring weights. The crude hazard ratio (HR) of SSRI use versus no SSRI use on hip fracture was 1.75 (95%CI: 1.12, 2.72) in Mondriaan and 2.09 (1.89, 2.32) in BIFAP. After confounding adjustment using time-varying Cox regression, stratification, and covariate adjustment using the PS, HRs increased in Mondriaan [2.59 (1.63, 4.12), 2.64 (1.63, 4.25), and 2.82 (1.63, 4.25), respectively] and decreased in BIFAP [1.56 (1.40, 1.73), 1.54 (1.39, 1.71), and 1.61 (1.45, 1.78), respectively]. MSMs with stabilized weights yielded HR 2.15 (1.30, 3.55) in Mondriaan and 1.63 (1.28, 2.07) in BIFAP when accounting for censoring and 2.13 (1.32, 3.45) in Mondriaan and 1.66 (1.30, 2.12) in BIFAP without accounting for censoring. In this empirical study, differences between the different methods to control for time-dependent confounding were small. The observed differences in treatment effect estimates between the databases are likely attributable to different confounding information in the datasets, illustrating that adequate information on (time-varying) confounding is crucial to prevent bias. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Methodology for Evaluating the Quality of Ecosystem Maps: A Case Study in the Andes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dolors Armenteras

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Uncertainty in thematic maps has been tested mainly in maps with discrete or fuzzy classifications based on spectral data. However, many ecosystem maps in tropical countries consist of discrete polygons containing information on various ecosystem properties such as vegetation cover, soil, climate, geomorphology and biodiversity. The combination of these properties into one class leads to error. We propose a probability-based sampling design with two domains, multiple stages, and stratification with selection of primary sampling units (PSUs proportional to the richness of strata present. Validation is undertaken through field visits and fine resolution remote sensing data. A pilot site in the center of the Colombian Andes was chosen to validate a government official ecosystem map. Twenty primary sampling units (PSUs of 10 × 15 km were selected, and the final numbers of final sampling units (FSUs were 76 for the terrestrial domain and 46 for the aquatic domain. Our results showed a confidence level of 95%, with the accuracy in the terrestrial domain varying between 51.8% and 64.3% and in the aquatic domain varying between 75% and 92%. Governments need to account for uncertainty since they rely on the quality of these maps to make decisions and guide policies.

  11. THE ARTHRITIS AND MUSCULOSKELETAL QUALITY IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM (AMQUIP: A BREAKTHROUGH SERIES METHODOLOGY PROJECT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MASTURA I

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The Australian government had funded the National Primary Care Collaborative (NPCC program with funding of $14.6 million over three years. One of the pilots project was the Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Quality Improvement Program (AMQuIP.The study aims to optimize general practitioners (GPs management of patients with osteoarthritis (OA of the hip and knee by identifying gaps between their current practice and best practice. The Breakthrough Series Collaborative methodology with several Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA cycles was employed. Participants comprises of 12 GPs/practices from two Victorian Divisions of general Practice (one rural, one metropolitan with 10 patients per GP/practice. GPs/practices attended an orientation and three learning workshops and a videoconference. GPs/practices completed PDSA cycles between workshop and reported results at workshops. GPs/practices reported use of guidelines, change in patient management and change in practice management/systems. All recruited patients completed the SF-12v2 Health Survey and WOMAC OA Index Questionnaire twice. Follow up activities including focus groups and face-to-face interviews were held six months after the final workshop. All GPs/practices used the guidelines/key messages, introduced “new” management strategies to patients, and made positive changes to their practice management/systems. Patient reported positive changes and outcomes. By using a structured methodology and evidence-based guidelines/key messages; GPs can introduce new patient management strategies, and by identifying gaps in practice management systems, positive changes can be achieved.

  12. Social exclusion in academia through biases in methodological quality evaluation: On the situation of women in science and philosophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leuschner, Anna

    2015-12-01

    Empirical studies show that academia is socially exclusive. I argue that this social exclusion works, at least partly, through the systematic methodological disqualification of contributions from members of underrepresented social groups. As methodological quality criteria are underdetermined their interpretation and weighting can be biased with relation to gender, race, social background, etc. Such biased quality evaluation can take place on a local or global level. The current situation of women in academic philosophy illuminates this. I conclude that only mechanical solutions can effectively change the situation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Rating the methodological quality in systematic reviews of studies on measurement properties: a scoring system for the COSMIN checklist.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terwee, Caroline B; Mokkink, Lidwine B; Knol, Dirk L; Ostelo, Raymond W J G; Bouter, Lex M; de Vet, Henrica C W

    2012-05-01

    The COSMIN checklist is a standardized tool for assessing the methodological quality of studies on measurement properties. It contains 9 boxes, each dealing with one measurement property, with 5-18 items per box about design aspects and statistical methods. Our aim was to develop a scoring system for the COSMIN checklist to calculate quality scores per measurement property when using the checklist in systematic reviews of measurement properties. The scoring system was developed based on discussions among experts and testing of the scoring system on 46 articles from a systematic review. Four response options were defined for each COSMIN item (excellent, good, fair, and poor). A quality score per measurement property is obtained by taking the lowest rating of any item in a box ("worst score counts"). Specific criteria for excellent, good, fair, and poor quality for each COSMIN item are described. In defining the criteria, the "worst score counts" algorithm was taken into consideration. This means that only fatal flaws were defined as poor quality. The scores of the 46 articles show how the scoring system can be used to provide an overview of the methodological quality of studies included in a systematic review of measurement properties. Based on experience in testing this scoring system on 46 articles, the COSMIN checklist with the proposed scoring system seems to be a useful tool for assessing the methodological quality of studies included in systematic reviews of measurement properties.

  14. Clinical practice guidelines and consensus statements in oncology--an assessment of their methodological quality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmel Jacobs

    Full Text Available Consensus statements and clinical practice guidelines are widely available for enhancing the care of cancer patients. Despite subtle differences in their definition and purpose, these terms are often used interchangeably. We systematically assessed the methodological quality of consensus statements and clinical practice guidelines published in three commonly read, geographically diverse, cancer-specific journals. Methods Consensus statements and clinical practice guidelines published between January 2005 and September 2013 in Current Oncology, European Journal of Cancer and Journal of Clinical Oncology were evaluated. Each publication was assessed using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation II (AGREE II rigour of development and editorial independence domains. For assessment of transparency of document development, 7 additional items were taken from the Institute of Medicine's standards for practice guidelines and the Journal of Clinical Oncology guidelines for authors of guidance documents.Consensus statements and clinical practice guidelines published between January 2005 and September 2013 in Current Oncology, European Journal of Cancer and Journal of Clinical Oncology were evaluated. Each publication was assessed using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation II (AGREE II rigour of development and editorial independence domains. For assessment of transparency of document development, 7 additional items were taken from the Institute of Medicine's standards for practice guidelines and the Journal of Clinical Oncology guidelines for authors of guidance documents.Thirty-four consensus statements and 67 clinical practice guidelines were evaluated. The rigour of development score for consensus statements over the three journals was 32% lower than that of clinical practice guidelines. The editorial independence score was 15% lower for consensus statements than clinical practice guidelines. One journal scored

  15. Methodological and Reporting Quality of Comparative Studies Evaluating Health-Related Quality of Life of Colorectal Cancer Patients and Controls: A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Carlos K H; Guo, Vivian Y W; Chen, Jing; Lam, Cindy L K

    2016-11-01

    Health-related quality of life is an important outcome measure in patients with colorectal cancer. Comparison with normative data has been increasingly undertaken to assess the additional impact of colorectal cancer on health-related quality of life. This review aimed to critically appraise the methodological details and reporting characteristics of comparative studies evaluating differences in health-related quality of life between patients and controls. A systematic search of English-language literature published between January 1985 and May 2014 was conducted through a database search of PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, and Medline. Comparative studies reporting health-related quality-of-life outcomes among patients who have colorectal cancer and controls were selected. Methodological and reporting quality per comparison study was evaluated based on a 11-item methodological checklist proposed by Efficace in 2003 and a set of criteria predetermined by reviewers. Thirty-one comparative studies involving >10,000 patients and >10,000 controls were included. Twenty-three studies (74.2%) originated from European countries, with the largest number from the Netherlands (n = 6). Twenty-eight studies (90.3%) compared the health-related quality of life of patients with normative data published elsewhere, whereas the remaining studies recruited a group of patients who had colorectal cancer and a group of control patients within the same studies. The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality-of-Life Questionnaire Core 30 was the most extensively used instrument (n = 16; 51.6%). Eight studies (25.8%) were classified as "probably robust" for clinical decision making according to the Efficace standard methodological checklist. Our further quality assessment revealed the lack of score differences reported (61.3%), contemporary comparisons (36.7%), statistical significance tested (38.7%), and matching of control group (58.1%), possibly leading to

  16. Comparison of methodological quality rating of systematic reviews on neuropathic pain using AMSTAR and R-AMSTAR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dosenovic, Svjetlana; Jelicic Kadic, Antonia; Vucic, Katarina; Markovina, Nikolina; Pieper, Dawid; Puljak, Livia

    2018-05-08

    Systematic reviews (SRs) in the field of neuropathic pain (NeuP) are increasingly important for decision-making. However, methodological flaws in SRs can reduce the validity of conclusions. Hence, it is important to assess the methodological quality of NeuP SRs critically. Additionally, it remains unclear which assessment tool should be used. We studied the methodological quality of SRs published in the field of NeuP and compared two assessment tools. We systematically searched 5 electronic databases to identify SRs of randomized controlled trials of interventions for NeuP available up to March 2015. Two independent reviewers assessed the methodological quality of the studies using the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) and the revised AMSTAR (R-AMSTAR) tools. The scores were converted to percentiles and ranked into 4 grades to allow comparison between the two checklists. Gwet's AC1 coefficient was used for interrater reliability assessment. The 97 included SRs had a wide range of methodological quality scores (AMSTAR median (IQR): 6 (5-8) vs. R-AMSTAR median (IQR): 30 (26-35)). The overall agreement score between the 2 raters was 0.62 (95% CI 0.39-0.86) for AMSTAR and 0.62 (95% CI 0.53-0.70) for R-AMSTAR. The 31 Cochrane systematic reviews (CSRs) were consistently ranked higher than the 66 non-Cochrane systematic reviews (NCSRs). The analysis of individual domains showed the best compliance in a comprehensive literature search (item 3) on both checklists. The results for the domain that was the least compliant differed: conflict of interest (item 11) was the item most poorly reported on AMSTAR vs. publication bias assessment (item 10) on R-AMSTAR. A high positive correlation between the total AMSTAR and R-AMSTAR scores for all SRs, as well as for CSRs and NCSRs, was observed. The methodological quality of analyzed SRs in the field of NeuP was not optimal, and CSRs had a higher quality than NCSRs. Both AMSTAR and R-AMSTAR tools produced comparable

  17. Quality control methodology for high-throughput protein-protein interaction screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vazquez, Alexei; Rual, Jean-François; Venkatesan, Kavitha

    2011-01-01

    Protein-protein interactions are key to many aspects of the cell, including its cytoskeletal structure, the signaling processes in which it is involved, or its metabolism. Failure to form protein complexes or signaling cascades may sometimes translate into pathologic conditions such as cancer or neurodegenerative diseases. The set of all protein interactions between the proteins encoded by an organism constitutes its protein interaction network, representing a scaffold for biological function. Knowing the protein interaction network of an organism, combined with other sources of biological information, can unravel fundamental biological circuits and may help better understand the molecular basics of human diseases. The protein interaction network of an organism can be mapped by combining data obtained from both low-throughput screens, i.e., "one gene at a time" experiments and high-throughput screens, i.e., screens designed to interrogate large sets of proteins at once. In either case, quality controls are required to deal with the inherent imperfect nature of experimental assays. In this chapter, we discuss experimental and statistical methodologies to quantify error rates in high-throughput protein-protein interactions screens.

  18. Evaluation of methodologies for assessing the overall diet: dietary quality scores and dietary pattern analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ocké, Marga C

    2013-05-01

    This paper aims to describe different approaches for studying the overall diet with advantages and limitations. Studies of the overall diet have emerged because the relationship between dietary intake and health is very complex with all kinds of interactions. These cannot be captured well by studying single dietary components. Three main approaches to study the overall diet can be distinguished. The first method is researcher-defined scores or indices of diet quality. These are usually based on guidelines for a healthy diet or on diets known to be healthy. The second approach, using principal component or cluster analysis, is driven by the underlying dietary data. In principal component analysis, scales are derived based on the underlying relationships between food groups, whereas in cluster analysis, subgroups of the population are created with people that cluster together based on their dietary intake. A third approach includes methods that are driven by a combination of biological pathways and the underlying dietary data. Reduced rank regression defines linear combinations of food intakes that maximally explain nutrient intakes or intermediate markers of disease. Decision tree analysis identifies subgroups of a population whose members share dietary characteristics that influence (intermediate markers of) disease. It is concluded that all approaches have advantages and limitations and essentially answer different questions. The third approach is still more in an exploration phase, but seems to have great potential with complementary value. More insight into the utility of conducting studies on the overall diet can be gained if more attention is given to methodological issues.

  19. 40 CFR Appendix D to Part 132 - Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative Methodology for the Development of Wildlife Criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Methodology for the Development of Wildlife Criteria D Appendix D to Part 132 Protection of Environment... Development of Wildlife Criteria Great Lakes States and Tribes shall adopt provisions consistent with (as protective as) this appendix. I. Introduction A. A Great Lakes Water Quality Wildlife Criterion (GLWC) is the...

  20. Review and evaluation of the methodological quality of the existing guidelines and recommendations for inherited neurometabolic disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cassis, Linda; Cortès-Saladelafont, Elisenda; Molero-Luis, Marta

    2015-01-01

    and timely treatments are often pivotal for the favorable course of the disease. Thus, the elaboration of new evidence-based recommendations for iNMD diagnosis and management is increasingly requested by health care professionals and patients, even though the methodological quality of existing guidelines...

  1. Rating the methodological quality in systematic reviews of studies on measurement properties: a scoring system for the COSMIN checklist

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Terwee, C.B.; Mokkink, L.B.; Knol, D.L.; Ostelo, R.W.J.G.; Bouter, L.M.; de Vet, H.C.W.

    2012-01-01

    Background: The COSMIN checklist is a standardized tool for assessing the methodological quality of studies on measurement properties. It contains 9 boxes, each dealing with one measurement property, with 5-18 items per box about design aspects and statistical methods. Our aim was to develop a

  2. [Needs assessment to improve the applicability and methodological quality of a German S3 guideline].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burckhardt, Marion; Hoffmann, Cristina; Nink-Grebe, Brigitte; Sänger, Sylvia

    2018-04-01

    Clinical practice guidelines can change the practice in healthcare only if their recommendations are implemented in a comprehensive way. The German S3 guideline "Local Therapy of Chronic Wounds in Patients with Peripheral Vascular Disease, Chronic Venous Insufficiency, and Diabetes" will be updated in 2017. The emphasis here is on the guideline's validity, user-friendliness and implementation into practice. Therefore, the aim was to identify the improvements required in regard to the guideline's methods and content presentation. The methodological approach used was the critical appraisal of the guideline according to established quality criteria and an additional stakeholder survey. Both were conducted between August and November 2016. The guideline and its related documents were reviewed independently by two researchers according to the criteria of the "Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation" (AGREE-II). Published reviews and peer reviews by external experts and organisations were also taken into account. For the stakeholder survey, a questionnaire with open questions was distributed by e-mail and via the Internet to health professionals and organisations involved in the care of patients with leg ulcers in Germany. The questions were aimed at amendments and new topics based on the stakeholders' experience in inpatient and outpatient care. In addition, the survey focused on gathering suggestions to improve the applicability of the guideline. Suggested new topics and amendments were summarised thematically. The stakeholders' suggestions to improve the applicability, the results of the critical appraisal and the relevant aspects of the external reviews were then summarised according to the AGREE-II domains and presented in a cause and effect diagram. 17 questionnaires (out of 864 sent out by e-mail) were returned. Due to high practice relevance, the stakeholders suggested an expansion of the inclusion criteria to patients with infected wounds and

  3. Quality of methodological reporting of randomized clinical trials of sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (sglt2 inhibitors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hadeel Alfahmi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2 inhibitors are a new class of medicines approved recently for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. To improve the quality of randomized clinical trial (RCT reports, the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT statement for methodological features was created. For achieving our objective in this study, we assessed the quality of methodological reporting of RCTs of SGLT2 inhibitors according to the 2010 CONSORT statement. We reviewed and analyzed the methodology of SGLT2 inhibitors RCTs that were approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA. Of the 27 trials, participants, eligibility criteria, and additional analyses were reported in 100% of the trials. In addition, trial design, interventions, and statistical methods were reported in 96.3% of the trials. Outcomes were reported in 93.6% of the trials. Settings were reported in 85.2% of the trials. Blinding and sample size were reported in 66.7 and 59.3% of the trials, respectively. Sequence allocation and the type of randomization were reported in 63 and 74.1% of the trials, respectively. Besides those, a few methodological items were inadequate in the trials. Allocation concealment was inadequate in most of the trials. It was reported only in 11.1% of the trials. The majority of RCTs have high percentage adherence for more than half of the methodological items of the 2010 CONSORT statement.

  4. Using Lean Six Sigma Methodology to Improve Quality of the Anesthesia Supply Chain in a Pediatric Hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Renée J; Wilson, Ashley E; Quezado, Zenaide

    2017-03-01

    Six Sigma and Lean methodologies are effective quality improvement tools in many health care settings. We applied the DMAIC methodology (define, measure, analyze, improve, control) to address deficiencies in our pediatric anesthesia supply chain. We defined supply chain problems by mapping existing processes and soliciting comments from those involved. We used daily distance walked by anesthesia technicians and number of callouts for missing supplies as measurements that we analyzed before and after implementing improvements (anesthesia cart redesign). We showed improvement in the metrics after those interventions were implemented, and those improvements were sustained and thus controlled 1 year after implementation.

  5. Social cognition interventions for people with schizophrenia: a systematic review focussing on methodological quality and intervention modality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Nina; Lawrence, Megan; Preti, Antonio; Wykes, Til; Cella, Matteo

    2017-08-01

    People with a diagnosis of schizophrenia have significant social and functional difficulties. Social cognition was found to influences these outcomes and in recent years interventions targeting this domain were developed. This paper reviews the existing literature on social cognition interventions for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia focussing on: i) comparing focussed (i.e. targeting only one social cognitive domain) and global interventions and ii) studies methodological quality. Systematic search was conducted on PubMed and PsycInfo. Studies were included if they were randomised control trials, participants had a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, and the intervention targeted at least one out of four social cognition domains (i.e. theory of mind, affect recognition, social perception and attribution bias). All papers were assessed for methodological quality. Information on the intervention, control condition, study methodology and the main findings from each study were extracted and critically summarised. Data from 32 studies fulfilled the inclusion criteria, considering a total of 1440 participants. Taking part in social cognition interventions produced significant improvements in theory of mind and affect recognition compared to both passive and active control conditions. Results were less clear for social perception and attributional bias. Focussed and global interventions had similar results on outcomes. Overall study methodological quality was modest. There was very limited evidence showing that social cognitive intervention result in functional outcome improvement. The evidence considered suggests that social cognition interventions may be a valuable approach for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. However, evidence quality is limited by measure heterogeneity, modest study methodology and short follow-up periods. The findings point to a number of recommendations for future research, including measurement standardisation

  6. Evaluation of the Marginal Fit of CAD/CAM Crowns Fabricated Using Two Different Chairside CAD/CAM Systems on Preparations of Varying Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renne, Walter; Wolf, Bethany; Kessler, Raymond; McPherson, Karen; Mennito, Anthony S

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluated the marginal gap of crowns fabricated using two new chairside computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing systems on preparations completed by clinicians with varying levels of expertise to identify whether common preparation errors affect marginal fit. The null hypothesis is that there is no difference in the mean marginal gaps of restorations of varying qualities and no difference in the mean marginal gap size between restorations fabricated using the PlanScan (D4D, Richardson, TX, USA) and the CEREC Omnicam (Sirona, Bensheim, Germany). The fit of 80 lithium disilicate crowns fabricated with the E4D PlanScan or CEREC Omnicam systems on preparations of varying quality were examined for marginal fit by using the replica technique. These same preparations were then visually examined against common criteria for anterior all-ceramic restorations and placed in one of four categories: excellent, good, fair, and poor. Linear mixed modeling was used to evaluate associations between marginal gap, tooth preparation rating, and fabrication machine. The fit was not significantly different between both systems across all qualities of preparation. The average fit was 104 μm for poor-quality preparations, 87.6 μm for fair preparations, 67.2 μm for good preparations, and 36.6 μm for excellent preparations. The null hypothesis is rejected. It can be concluded that preparation quality has a significant impact on marginal gap regardless of which system is used. However, no significant difference was found when comparing the systems to each other. Within the limitations of this in vitro study, it can be concluded that crown preparation quality has a significant effect on marginal gap of the restoration when the clinician uses either CEREC Omnicam or E4D PlansScan. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. MODERN CONCEPTS OF THE SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGY FOR IMPROVING THE QUALITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MARGARITA JANESKA

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Product quality is generally accepted as being crucial in today’s industrial business. The traditional aspects of product quality are connected to product design (translating customer demands into attractive features and technical specifications and to the design and specification of high performance production processes with low defect rates. Quality management is the general expression for all actions leading to quality. Quality management is focused on improving customer satisfaction through continuous improvement of processes including the removal of uncertain activities, and continuous improvement of the quality of processes, products and services. The quality management includes four key processes, such as quality planning, quality assurance, quality control and quality costs. The main accent in this paper will be on quality control and the application of one of the quality control tools in order to improve it. Six Sigma is different from other quality improvement concepts in that its framework is comprised of many principles, tools and techniques, which, together with experience, are all integrated and translated into best practices. Bearing in mind that the goal of every company is to work effectively and effectively in the long run, this paper focuses on Six Sigma as a way to continuously improve quality. Namely, this paper emphasizes the key features of the quality of products / services, the Need for the application of Six Sigma for quality assurance, and also a detailed list of tools and techniques that can be used during the implementation of Six Sigma.

  8. Growth performance of sea bass fed increasing levels of pea-wheat protein in diets varying in fish meal quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Tibaldi

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available A 11-week trial was carried out to compare the growth performance of sea bass (D. labrax fed six isonitrogenous isocaloric diets where protein from two fish meals of different nutritive value was replaced with graded levels (0, 50 or 75% of a mixture made up by a pea protein concentrate and wheat gluten. Fish meal quality did not affect (P>0.05 weight gain or feed efficiency in fish fed graded levels of plant protein in the diet. Feed intake decreased (P<0.05 as the level of plant protein was increased in the diet but this did not led to impaired growth or feed conversion rate. Protein efficiency and retention were equally improved (P<0.05 only with diets where a poor quality fish meal was substituted by protein rich-plant ingredients. Calculations based on the mass balance of nutrients of sea bass proven the inclusion of a mixture of highly purified plant-protein derivatives in complete diets for the sea bass, to be beneficial in reducing pollution load.

  9. Eating quality of UK-style sausages varying in price, meat content, fat level and salt content.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheard, P R; Hope, E; Hughes, S I; Baker, A; Nute, G R

    2010-05-01

    Thirty-six brands of pork sausage were purchased from a total of 10 retailers over a 4 months period and assessed for eating quality. The brands included 5 of the 10 most popular sausages in the UK, 4 basic, 14 standard, 10 premium and 8 healthy eating brands. The average price, meat content, fat content and salt content was 3.31 pounds/kg, 62%, 17% and 1.6%, respectively, but there were wide differences in price (1.08 pound/kg-5.23 pounds/kg), meat content (32-97%), fat content (2.1-29.1%) and salt content (0.5-2.5%). Sausages were assessed by a trained sensory panel using 100mm unstructured line scales and 14 descriptors (skin toughness, firmness, juiciness, pork flavour, fattiness, meatiness, particle size, cohesiveness, saltiness, sweet, acidic, bitter and metallic) including overall liking. The declared meat content was positively correlated with price, skin toughness, firmness, pork flavour, meatiness, particle size and perceived saltiness (r=0.5 or better). The declared fat content was positively correlated with fattiness and sweetness (r=0.42 or better) but not juiciness. There was no significant correlation between declared salt content and perceived saltiness. A principal component analysis showed that the first two principal components accounted for 51% of the variability in the data. Products could be separated into four quadrants according to their price, meat content, fat content and their associated eating quality attributes. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Promoting Continuous Quality Improvement in the Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance Through Q-Sort Methodology and Learning Collaboratives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fifolt, Matthew; Preskitt, Julie; Rucks, Andrew; Corvey, Kathryn; Benton, Elizabeth Cason

    Q-sort methodology is an underutilized tool for differentiating among multiple priority measures. The authors describe steps to identify, delimit, and sort potential health measures and use selected priority measures to establish an overall agenda for continuous quality improvement (CQI) activities within learning collaboratives. Through an iterative process, the authors vetted a list of potential child and adolescent health measures. Multiple stakeholders, including payers, direct care providers, and organizational representatives sorted and prioritized measures, using Q-methodology. Q-methodology provided the Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance (ACHIA) an objective and rigorous approach to system improvement. Selected priority measures were used to design learning collaboratives. An open dialogue among stakeholders about state health priorities spurred greater organizational buy-in for ACHIA and increased its credibility as a statewide provider of learning collaboratives. The integrated processes of Q-sort methodology, learning collaboratives, and CQI offer a practical yet innovative way to identify and prioritize state measures for child and adolescent health and establish a learning agenda for targeted quality improvement activities.

  11. Quality of reporting and of methodology of studies on interventions for trophic ulcers in leprosy: A systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Forsetlund L

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: In the process of conducting a systematic review on interventions for skin lesions due to neuritis in leprosy, we assessed several primary papers with respect to the quality of reporting and methods used in the studies. Awareness of what constitutes weak points in previously conducted studies may be used to improve the planning, conducting and reporting of future clinical trials. Aims: To assess the quality of reporting and of methodology in studies of interventions for skin lesions due to neuritis in leprosy. Methods: Items of importance for preventing selection bias, detection bias, attrition bias and performance bias were among items assessed. The items for assessing methodological quality were used as a basis for making the checklist to assess the quality of reporting. Results: Out of the 854 references that we inspected eight studies were included on the basis of the inclusion criteria. The interventions tested were dressings, topical agents and footwear and in all studies healing of ulcers was the main outcome measure. Reporting of both, methods and results suffered from underreporting and disorganization. The most under-reported items were concealment of allocation, blinding of patients and outcome assessors, intention to treat and validation of outcomes. Conclusion: There is an apparent need to improve the methodological quality as well as the quality of reporting of trials in leprosy ulcer treatment. The most important threat in existing studies is the threat of selection bias. For the reporting of future studies, journals could promote and encourage the use of the CONSORT statement checklist by expecting and requiring that authors adhere to it in their reporting.

  12. Dietary quality varies according to data collection instrument: a comparison between a food frequency questionnaire and 24-hour recall

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Rogério Melo Rodrigues

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The objective of this study was to assess the agreement between the Brazilian Healthy Eating Index – Revised (BHEI-R, estimated by a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ and multiple 24-hour recalls (24h-R. The Wilcoxon paired test, partial correlations (PC, intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC, and Bland-Altman method were used. The total BHEI-R scores and its components (“total fruits”, “whole fruits”, “total vegetables”, “integral cereals”, “saturated fat”, “sodium”, and “energy intake derived from solid fat, added sugar, and alcoholic beverages” were statistically different, with the ICC and PC indicating poor concordance and correlation. The mean concordance estimated for the total BHEI-R and its components varied from 68% for “integral cereals” to 147% for “whole fruits”. The suitable concordance limits were violated for most of the components of the BHEI-R. Poor concordance was observed between the BHEI-R estimated by the FFQ and by multiple 24h-R, which indicated a strong reliability of the BHEI-R on the instrument used to collect information on food consumption.

  13. Methodologic quality of meta-analyses and systematic reviews on the Mediterranean diet and cardiovascular disease outcomes: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huedo-Medina, Tania B; Garcia, Marissa; Bihuniak, Jessica D; Kenny, Anne; Kerstetter, Jane

    2016-03-01

    Several systematic reviews/meta-analyses published within the past 10 y have examined the associations of Mediterranean-style diets (MedSDs) on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. However, these reviews have not been evaluated for satisfying contemporary methodologic quality standards. This study evaluated the quality of recent systematic reviews/meta-analyses on MedSD and CVD risk outcomes by using an established methodologic quality scale. The relation between review quality and impact per publication value of the journal in which the article had been published was also evaluated. To assess compliance with current standards, we applied a modified version of the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTARMedSD) quality scale to systematic reviews/meta-analyses retrieved from electronic databases that had met our selection criteria: 1) used systematic or meta-analytic procedures to review the literature, 2) examined MedSD trials, and 3) had MedSD interventions independently or combined with other interventions. Reviews completely satisfied from 8% to 75% of the AMSTARMedSD items (mean ± SD: 31.2% ± 19.4%), with those published in higher-impact journals having greater quality scores. At a minimum, 60% of the 24 reviews did not disclose full search details or apply appropriate statistical methods to combine study findings. Only 5 of the reviews included participant or study characteristics in their analyses, and none evaluated MedSD diet characteristics. These data suggest that current meta-analyses/systematic reviews evaluating the effect of MedSD on CVD risk do not fully comply with contemporary methodologic quality standards. As a result, there are more research questions to answer to enhance our understanding of how MedSD affects CVD risk or how these effects may be modified by the participant or MedSD characteristics. To clarify the associations between MedSD and CVD risk, future meta-analyses and systematic reviews should not only follow methodologic

  14. Microbiological and technological quality of corn and faba bean as affected by varying levels of gamma irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Youssef, B.M.; Swailam, H.M.H.; Elsamahy, S.K.

    1995-01-01

    Samples of corn and faba bean grains subjected to different doses of gamma radiation. The microbiological, physical and physicochemical properties of irradiated grains were assessed as compared with control. corn starch was extracted from irradiated corn grains and its quality evaluated. The results showed that increasing irradiation dose caused a gradual reduction in total bacterial counts, counts of spore forming bacteria, coliform group, mold and yeast in corn grains. The same trend applies to the effect of storage period for irradiated samples. 7.5 KGy was found to eliminate all microorganisms. Increasing irradiation dose from 1.0 to 10.0 KGy caused an increase in soundness number and water absorption of corn grains, acidity, reducing power and solubility of isolated starch while the swelling power and water binding capacity of starch were reduced. The rate of change during storage period was lower in the irradiated samples than in the untreated ones. 7 figs., 3 tabs

  15. Feasibility study and methodology to create a quality-evaluated database of primary care data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison Bourke

    2004-11-01

    Conclusions In the group of practices studied, levels of recording were generally assessed to be of sufficient quality to enable a database of quality-evaluated, anonymised primary care records to be created.

  16. On the quality of global emission inventories. Approaches, methodologies, input data and uncertainties

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olivier, J.G.J.

    2002-01-01

    Four key scientific questions will be investigated: (1) How does a user define the 'quality' of a global (or national) emission inventory? (Chapter 2); (2) What determines the quality of a global emission inventory? (Chapters 2 and 7); (3) How can inventory quality be achieved in practice and expressed in quantitative terms ('uncertainty')? (Chapters 3 to 6); and (4) What is the preferred approach for compiling a global emission inventory, given the practical limitations and the desired inventory quality? (Chapters 7 and 8)

  17. A staffing decision support methodology using a quality loss function : a cross-disciplinary quantitative study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mincsovics, G.Z.

    2009-01-01

    Background Understanding the quality loss implications of short staffing is essential in maintaining service quality on a limited budget. Objectives For elaborate financial control on staffing decisions, it is necessary to quantify the cost of the incidental quality loss that a given workload and

  18. Some problems in methodology of economjc evaluation of radiation technique quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kodyukov, V.M.; Purtova, M.I.; Sokolova, Z.I.; Smirnova, Z.M.

    1976-01-01

    The quality of radiation equipment (RE) should essentially be assessed when designing, standardizing, planning, and evaluating the cost and economy of RE. The basic factors are sited upon which subsequent economic assessment of quality levels were based. It also discusses the specifics involved in determining the principal quality factors for radioisotopic flaw-detection equipment and gamma-therapeutic instruments

  19. Quality Adjusted Life Years and Trade Off Exercises : exploring methodology and validity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verschuuren, Marieke

    2006-01-01

    Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) are a popular outcome measure in cost-effectiveness analyses. QALYs are computed by multiplying follow-up or survival by a scaling factor reflecting health related quality of life, and as such capture quantity and quality gains simultaneously. Issues with regard

  20. Randomized clinical trials in dentistry: Risks of bias, risks of random errors, reporting quality, and methodologic quality over the years 1955-2013.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Humam Saltaji

    Full Text Available To examine the risks of bias, risks of random errors, reporting quality, and methodological quality of randomized clinical trials of oral health interventions and the development of these aspects over time.We included 540 randomized clinical trials from 64 selected systematic reviews. We extracted, in duplicate, details from each of the selected randomized clinical trials with respect to publication and trial characteristics, reporting and methodologic characteristics, and Cochrane risk of bias domains. We analyzed data using logistic regression and Chi-square statistics.Sequence generation was assessed to be inadequate (at unclear or high risk of bias in 68% (n = 367 of the trials, while allocation concealment was inadequate in the majority of trials (n = 464; 85.9%. Blinding of participants and blinding of the outcome assessment were judged to be inadequate in 28.5% (n = 154 and 40.5% (n = 219 of the trials, respectively. A sample size calculation before the initiation of the study was not performed/reported in 79.1% (n = 427 of the trials, while the sample size was assessed as adequate in only 17.6% (n = 95 of the trials. Two thirds of the trials were not described as double blinded (n = 358; 66.3%, while the method of blinding was appropriate in 53% (n = 286 of the trials. We identified a significant decrease over time (1955-2013 in the proportion of trials assessed as having inadequately addressed methodological quality items (P < 0.05 in 30 out of the 40 quality criteria, or as being inadequate (at high or unclear risk of bias in five domains of the Cochrane risk of bias tool: sequence generation, allocation concealment, incomplete outcome data, other sources of bias, and overall risk of bias.The risks of bias, risks of random errors, reporting quality, and methodological quality of randomized clinical trials of oral health interventions have improved over time; however, further efforts that contribute to the development of more stringent

  1. [Assessment of the methodological quality of theses submitted to the Faculty of Medicine Fez].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boly, A; Tachfouti, N; Zohoungbogbo, I S S; Achhab, Y El; Nejjari, C

    2014-06-09

    A thesis in medicine is a scientific work which allows a medical student to acquire a Doctor of Medicine degree. It is therefore recommended that theses presented by students fulfill essential methodological criteria in order to obtain scientifically credible results and recommendations. The aim of this study was to assess the methodology of thesis presented to the Faculty of Medicine in Fez in 2008. We developed an evaluation table containing questions on the different sections of the IMRAD structure on which these theses were based and we estimated the proportion of theses that conformed to each criterion. There were 160 theses on various specialties presented in 2008. The majority of the theses (79.3%) were case series. Research questions were clearly expressed in 62.0% but the primary objectives were pertinent in only 52.0%. Our study shows that there were important deficiencies in the methodological rigor of the theses and very little representation of the theses in publications.

  2. Biospectroscopy reveals the effect of varying water quality on tadpole tissues of the common frog (Rana temporaria).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strong, Rebecca J; Halsall, Crispin J; Ferenčík, Martin; Jones, Kevin C; Shore, Richard F; Martin, Francis L

    2016-06-01

    Amphibians are undergoing large population declines in many regions around the world. As environmental pollution from both agricultural and urban sources has been implicated in such declines, there is a need for a biomonitoring approach to study potential impacts on this vulnerable class of organism. This study assessed the use of infrared (IR) spectroscopy as a tool to detect changes in several tissues (liver, muscle, kidney, heart and skin) of late-stage common frog (Rana temporaria) tadpoles collected from ponds with differing water quality. Small differences in spectral signatures were revealed between a rural agricultural pond and an urban pond receiving wastewater and landfill run-off; these were limited to the liver and heart, although large differences in body size were apparent, surprisingly with tadpoles from the urban site larger than those from the rural site. Large differences in liver spectra were found between tadpoles from the pesticide and nutrient impacted pond compared to the rural agricultural pond, particularly in regions associated with lipids. Liver mass and hepatosomatic indices were found to be significantly increased in tadpoles from the site impacted by pesticides and trace organic chemicals, suggestive of exposure to environmental contamination. Significant alterations were also found in muscle tissue between tadpoles from these two ponds in regions associated with glycogen, potentially indicative of a stress response. This study highlights the use of IR spectroscopy, a low-cost, rapid and reagent-free technique in the biomonitoring of a class of organisms susceptible to environmental degradation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Mobile and Web 2.0 interventions for weight management: an overview of review evidence and its methodological quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bardus, Marco; Smith, Jane R; Samaha, Laya; Abraham, Charles

    2016-08-01

    The use of Internet and related technologies for promoting weight management (WM), physical activity (PA), or dietary-related behaviours has been examined in many articles and systematic reviews. This overview aims to summarize and assess the quality of the review evidence specifically focusing on mobile and Web 2.0 technologies, which are the most utilized, currently available technologies. Following a registered protocol (CRD42014010323), we searched 16 databases for articles published in English until 31 December 2014 discussing the use of either mobile or Web 2.0 technologies to promote WM or related behaviors, i.e. diet and physical activity (PA). Two reviewers independently selected reviews and assessed their methodological quality using the AMSTAR checklist. Citation matrices were used to determine the overlap among reviews. Forty-four eligible reviews were identified, 39 of which evaluated the effects of interventions using mobile or Web 2.0 technologies. Methodological quality was generally low with only 7 reviews (16%) meeting the highest standards. Suggestive evidence exists for positive effects of mobile technologies on weight-related outcomes and, to a lesser extent, PA. Evidence is inconclusive regarding Web 2.0 technologies. Reviews on mobile and Web 2.0 interventions for WM and related behaviors suggest that these technologies can, under certain circumstances, be effective, but conclusions are limited by poor review quality based on a heterogeneous evidence base. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Public Health Association. All rights reserved.

  4. Reconstructing cone-beam CT with spatially varying qualities for adaptive radiotherapy: a proof-of-principle study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Wenting; Yan, Hao; Gu, Xuejun; Tian, Zhen; Luo, Ouyang; Yang, Liu; Zhou, Linghong; Cervino, Laura; Wang, Jing; Jiang, Steve; Jia, Xun

    2014-10-21

    With the aim of maximally reducing imaging dose while meeting requirements for adaptive radiation therapy (ART), we propose in this paper a new cone beam CT (CBCT) acquisition and reconstruction method that delivers images with a low noise level inside a region of interest (ROI) and a relatively high noise level outside the ROI. The acquired projection images include two groups: densely sampled projections at a low exposure with a large field of view (FOV) and sparsely sampled projections at a high exposure with a small FOV corresponding to the ROI. A new algorithm combining the conventional filtered back-projection algorithm and the tight-frame iterative reconstruction algorithm is also designed to reconstruct the CBCT based on these projection data. We have validated our method on a simulated head-and-neck (HN) patient case, a semi-real experiment conducted on a HN cancer patient under a full-fan scan mode, as well as a Catphan phantom under a half-fan scan mode. Relative root-mean-square errors (RRMSEs) of less than 3% for the entire image and ~1% within the ROI compared to the ground truth have been observed. These numbers demonstrate the ability of our proposed method to reconstruct high-quality images inside the ROI. As for the part outside ROI, although the images are relatively noisy, it can still provide sufficient information for radiation dose calculations in ART. Dose distributions calculated on our CBCT image and on a standard CBCT image are in agreement, with a mean relative difference of 0.082% inside the ROI and 0.038% outside the ROI. Compared with the standard clinical CBCT scheme, an imaging dose reduction of approximately 3-6 times inside the ROI was achieved, as well as an 8 times outside the ROI. Regarding computational efficiency, it takes 1-3 min to reconstruct a CBCT image depending on the number of projections used. These results indicate that the proposed method has the potential for application in ART.

  5. Applying the Tropos Methodology for Analysing Web Services Requirements and Reasoning about Qualities of Services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aiello, Marco; Giorgini, Paolo

    2004-01-01

    The shift in software engineering from the design, implementation and management of isolated software elements towards a network of autonomous interoperable service is calling for a shift in the way software is designed. We propose the use of the agent-oriented methodology Tropos for the analysis of

  6. A Comparison of the Methodological Quality of Articles in Computer Science Education Journals and Conference Proceedings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, Justus J.; Julnes, George; Bednarik, Roman; Sutinen, Erkki

    2007-01-01

    In this study we empirically investigate the claim that articles published in computer science education journals are more methodologically sound than articles published in computer science education conference proceedings. A random sample of 352 articles was selected from those articles published in major computer science education forums between…

  7. Importance of methodology on (99m)technetium dimercapto-succinic acid scintigraphic image quality: imaging pilot study for RIVUR (Randomized Intervention for Children With Vesicoureteral Reflux) multicenter investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziessman, Harvey A; Majd, Massoud

    2009-07-01

    We reviewed our experience with (99m)technetium dimercapto-succinic acid scintigraphy obtained during an imaging pilot study for a multicenter investigation (Randomized Intervention for Children With Vesicoureteral Reflux) of the effectiveness of daily antimicrobial prophylaxis for preventing recurrent urinary tract infection and renal scarring. We analyzed imaging methodology and its relation to diagnostic image quality. (99m)Technetium dimercapto-succinic acid imaging guidelines were provided to participating sites. High-resolution planar imaging with parallel hole or pinhole collimation was required. Two core reviewers evaluated all submitted images. Analysis included appropriate views, presence or lack of patient motion, adequate magnification, sufficient counts and diagnostic image quality. Inter-reader agreement was evaluated. We evaluated 70, (99m)technetium dimercapto-succinic acid studies from 14 institutions. Variability was noted in methodology and image quality. Correlation (r value) between dose administered and patient age was 0.780. For parallel hole collimator imaging good correlation was noted between activity administered and counts (r = 0.800). For pinhole imaging the correlation was poor (r = 0.110). A total of 10 studies (17%) were rejected for quality issues of motion, kidney overlap, inadequate magnification, inadequate counts and poor quality images. The submitting institution was informed and provided with recommendations for improving quality, and resubmission of another study was required. Only 4 studies (6%) were judged differently by the 2 reviewers, and the differences were minor. Methodology and image quality for (99m)technetium dimercapto-succinic acid scintigraphy varied more than expected between institutions. The most common reason for poor image quality was inadequate count acquisition with insufficient attention to the tradeoff between administered dose, length of image acquisition, start time of imaging and resulting image

  8. [Methodological quality of articles on therapeutic procedures published in Cirugía Española. Evaluation of the period 2005-2008].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manterola, Carlos; Grande, Luís

    2010-04-01

    To determine methodological quality of therapy articles published in Cirugía Española and to study its association with the publication year, the centre of origin and subjects. A literature study which included all therapy articles published between 2005 and 2008. All kinds of clinical designs were considered, excluding editorials, review articles, letters to editor and experimental studies. Variables analysed included: year of publication, centre of origin, design, and methodological quality of articles. A valid and reliable scale was applied to determine methodological quality. A total of 243 articles [206 series of cases (84.8%), 27 cohort studies (11.1%), 9 clinical trials (3.7%) and 1 case control study (0.4%)] were found. Studies came preferentially from Catalonia and Valencia (22.3% and 12.3% respectively). Thematic areas most frequently found were hepato-bilio-pancreatic and colorectal surgery (20.0% and 16.6%, respectively). Average and median of the methodological quality score calculated for the entire series were 9.5+/-4.3 points and 8 points, respectively. Association between methodological quality and geographical area (p=0.0101), subject area (p=0.0267), and university origin (p=0.0369) was found. A significant increase of methodological quality by publication year was observed (p=0.0004). Methodological quality of therapy articles published in Cirugía Española between 2005 and 2008 is low; but an increase tendency with statistical significance was observed.

  9. Can formal collaborative methodologies improve quality in primary health care in New Zealand? Insights from the EQUIPPED Auckland Collaborative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Celia; Bycroft, Janine; Healey, Kate; Field, Adrian; Ghafel, Mazin

    2012-12-01

    Auckland District Health Board was one of four District Health Boards to trial the Breakthrough Series (BTS) methodology to improve the management of long-term conditions in New Zealand, with support from the Ministry of Health. To improve clinical outcomes, facilitate planned care and promote quality improvement within participating practices in Auckland. Implementation of the Collaborative followed the improvement model / Institute for Healthcare Improvement methodology. Three topic areas were selected: system redesign, cardio-vascular disease/diabetes, and self-management support. An expert advisory group and the Improvement Foundation Australia helped guide project development and implementation. Primary Health Organisation facilitators were trained in the methodology and 15 practice teams participated in the three learning workshops and action periods over 12 months. An independent evaluation study using both quantitative and qualitative methods was conducted. Improvements were recorded in cardiovascular disease risk assessment, practice-level systems of care, self-management systems and follow-up and coordination for patients. Qualitative research found improvements in coordination and teamwork, knowledge of practice populations and understanding of managing long-term conditions. The Collaborative process delivered some real improvements in the systems of care for people with long-term conditions and a change in culture among participating practices. The findings suggest that by strengthening facilitation processes, improving access to comprehensive population audit tools and lengthening the time frame, the process has the potential to make significant improvements in practice. Other organisations should consider this approach when investigating quality improvement programmes.

  10. Development of Process Control Methodology for Tracking the Quality and Safety of Pain, Agitation, and Sedation Management in Critical Care Units.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Timothy S; Kydonaki, Kalliopi; Lee, Robert J; Everingham, Kirsty; Antonelli, Jean; Harkness, Ronald T; Cole, Stephen; Quasim, Tara; Ruddy, James; McDougall, Marcia; Davidson, Alan; Rutherford, John; Richards, Jonathan; Weir, Christopher J

    2016-03-01

    -3,481 across ICUs). The mean proportion of care periods with each quality metric varied between ICUs: excessive sedation 12-38%; agitation 4-17%; poor relaxation 13-21%; poor ventilator synchronization 8-17%; and overall optimum sedation 45-70%. Mean adverse event intervals ranged from 1.5 to 10.3 patients treated. The quality measures appeared relatively stable during the observation period. Process control methodology can be used to simultaneously monitor multiple aspects of pain-sedation-agitation management within ICUs. Variation within and between ICUs could be used as triggers to explore practice variation, improve quality, and monitor this over time.

  11. Maps of sharpness: a methodology to present results of quality control for mammographic system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oliveira, Henrique Jesus Quintino de; Marques, Marcio Alexandre; Frere, Annie France; Schiable, Homero; Marques, Paulo M. Azevedo; Irita, Ricardo Toshiyuki

    1996-01-01

    A new method for evaluating radiologic imaging systems quality is presented. This method intends to relate the numeric results from quality control procedures to the magnitude of shadow and penumbra in the image from given objects. This evaluation is based on a computer simulation and it can be performed for any system and any object placed in any location of the radiation field

  12. Outcomes of Quality Assurance: A Discussion of Knowledge, Methodology and Validity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stensaker, Bjorn

    2008-01-01

    A common characteristic in many quality assurance schemes around the world is their implicit and often narrowly formulated understanding of how organisational change is to take place as a result of the process. By identifying some of the underlying assumptions related to organisational change in current quality assurance schemes, the aim of this…

  13. Quality benchmarking methodology: Case study of finance and culture industries in Latvia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ieva Zemīte

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Political, socio-economic and cultural changes that have taken place in the world during the last years have influenced all the spheres. Constant improvements are necessary to sustain in rival and shrinking markets. This sets high quality standards for the service industries. Therefore it is important to conduct comparison of quality criteria to ascertain which practices are achieving superior performance levels. At present companies in Latvia do not carry out mutual benchmarking, and as a result of that do not know how they rank against their peers in terms of quality, as well as they do not see benefits in sharing of information and in benchmarking.The purpose of this paper is to determine the criteria of qualitative benchmarking, and to investigate the use of the benchmarking quality in service industries, particularly: finance and culture sectors in Latvia in order to determine the key driving factors of quality, to explore internal and foreign benchmarks, and to reveal the full potential of inputs’ reduction and efficiency growth for the aforementioned industries.Case study and other tools are used to define the readiness of the company for benchmarking. Certain key factors are examined for their impact on quality criteria. The results are based on the research conducted in professional associations in defined fields (insurance and theatre.Originality/value – this is the first study that adopts the benchmarking models for measuring quality criteria and readiness for mutual comparison in insurance and theatre industries in Latvia.

  14. Assessment of life quality in patients with bronchial asthma residing in Krakow in the areas of varying concentrations of particulate matter (PM10

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Ścibor

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. Asthma is a chronic disease, from which more and more people in the world suffer. It is connected with many bothersome symptoms and limitations, which result in decreased quality of life for the patient. Environmental and individual aspects do not necessarily affect individuals in the same way, so it is necessary to determine which factors have predominantly impacted on an individual, in order to minimize their impact and to take better control over treatment of asthma. The aim of this research was to compare the quality of life among patients with bronchial asthma living in Krakow in the areas where they get exposed to varying concentrations of particulate matter (PM10. Material and methods. The study included 98 adults diagnosed with bronchial asthma. The research was conducted using the AQLQ poll. PM10 concentration was measured in several Malopolska Air Pollution Monitoring Stations located throughout the city. Results. Analyzing the quality of life in the view of symptoms, activity limitations and emotional well being, there was a substantial statistical difference observed in people occupying the areas with different PM10 concentrations. No significant statistical difference was observed in the frequency of asthma symptoms caused by the environmental stimuli between the 2 discussed groups. One group of patients who came to the allergy clinic for control of asthma symptoms and the second group who live in the vicinity of the monitoring stations measuring PM10 concentrations. Conclusions. For many of the cases, the quality of life was not worse for patients with asthma living in an area with slightly elevated concentrations of PM10, and sometimes paradoxically the quality of life was improved. These results show that PM10 concentrations do not correlate with quality of life of asthma patients.

  15. Application of Six Sigma Using DMAIC Methodology in the Process of Product Quality Control in Metallurgical Operation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Girmanová Lenka

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The Six Sigma DMAIC can be considered a guide for problem solving and product or process improvement. The majority of companies start to implement Six Sigma using the DMAIC methodology. The paper deals with application of Six Sigma using the DMAIC methodology in the process of product quality control. The case study is oriented on the field of metallurgical operations. The goal of the Six Sigma project was to ensure the required metallurgic product quality and to avoid an increase in internal costs associated with poor product quality. In this case study, a variety of tools and techniques like flow chart, histogram, Pareto diagram, analysis of FMEA (Failure Mode and Effect Analysis data, cause and effect diagram, logical analysis was used. The Sigma level has improved by approximately 13%. The achieved improvements have helped to reduce the quantity of defective products and the processing costs (technology for re-adjusting. Benefits resulting from the DMAIC implementation can be divided into three levels: the qualitative, economic and safety level.

  16. Quality Control in Screening for Infectious Diseases at Blood Banks. Rationale and Methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sáez-Alquezar, Amadeo; Albajar-Viñas, Pedro; Guimarães, André Valpassos; Corrêa, José Abol

    2015-11-01

    Quality control procedures are indispensable to ensure the reliability of the results provided by laboratories responsible for serological screening in blood banks. International recommendations on systems of quality management classify as a top component the inclusion of two types of control: (a) internal quality control (IQC) and (b) external quality control (EQC). In EQC it is essential to have, at least, a monthly frequency of laboratory assessment. On the other hand, IQC involves the daily use of low-reactivity control sera, which should be systematically added in all run, carried out in the laboratory for each parameter. Through the IQC analysis some variations in the criteria of run acceptance and rejection may be revealed, but it is of paramount importance to ensure the previous definition of these criteria and even more importantly, the adherence to them; and that corresponds to the validation of analytical runs of each test. Since 2010 this has been, for instance, the experience of the PNCQ*, developing external quality control programmes on serology for blood banks. These programmes use samples of lyophilized sera well-characterized for the reactivity related to the parameters used for the serological screening of blood donors. The programmes have used blind panels of six samples for monthly assessments. In the last 50 assessments, which involved 68 blood banks in Brazil, a significant number of instances of non-compliance were observed in all monthly assessments. These results provide strong support to the recommendation of systematic monthly assessments. (*) National Quality Control Programme (PNCQ).

  17. Development of a nonlocal convective mixing scheme with varying upward mixing rates for use in air quality and chemical transport models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mihailović, Dragutin T; Alapaty, Kiran; Sakradzija, Mirjana

    2008-06-01

    Asymmetrical convective non-local scheme (CON) with varying upward mixing rates is developed for simulation of vertical turbulent mixing in the convective boundary layer in air quality and chemical transport models. The upward mixing rate form the surface layer is parameterized using the sensible heat flux and the friction and convective velocities. Upward mixing rates varying with height are scaled with an amount of turbulent kinetic energy in layer, while the downward mixing rates are derived from mass conservation. This scheme provides a less rapid mass transport out of surface layer into other layers than other asymmetrical convective mixing schemes. In this paper, we studied the performance of a nonlocal convective mixing scheme with varying upward mixing in the atmospheric boundary layer and its impact on the concentration of pollutants calculated with chemical and air-quality models. This scheme was additionally compared versus a local eddy-diffusivity scheme (KSC). Simulated concentrations of NO(2) and the nitrate wet deposition by the CON scheme are closer to the observations when compared to those obtained from using the KSC scheme. Concentrations calculated with the CON scheme are in general higher and closer to the observations than those obtained by the KSC scheme (of the order of 15-20%). Nitrate wet deposition calculated with the CON scheme are in general higher and closer to the observations than those obtained by the KSC scheme. To examine the performance of the scheme, simulated and measured concentrations of a pollutant (NO(2)) and nitrate wet deposition was compared for the year 2002. The comparison was made for the whole domain used in simulations performed by the chemical European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme Unified model (version UNI-ACID, rv2.0) where schemes were incorporated.

  18. Quality control methodology and implementation of X-radiation standards beams, mammography level, following the standard IEC 61267

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Correa, Eduardo de Lima

    2010-01-01

    In this work it was developed and applied a quality control program of the X radiation system (160 kV, constant potential, target of tungsten) of the Calibration Laboratory of IPEN(LCI) in the energy range relative to mammography beams (from 25 kV to 35 kV). The X radiation standards beams, level mammography, using molybdenum and aluminum as additional filtration, were established after the application of this quality control program following national and international recommendations. The reference ionization chamber has traceability to PTB and was regularly submitted to quality control tests for evaluation and analysis of its performance. The radiation qualities emerging from the X-radiation assembly (RQR-M), based on a phantom made up of an aluminum added filter (RQA-M), narrow beam condition (RQN-M) and broad beam condition (RQB-M), following the recommendations of the international standard IEC 61267 (2005) and the IAEA code of practice, TRS 457 (2007) were established. For the implantation of RQN-M and RQB-M radiation qualities, two mammography phantoms were developed. The half-value layers found are those presented by the German primary laboratory PTB, and varied from 0.35 to 1.21 mm Al. The air kerma rates were obtained for all the 15 implanted qualities. (author)

  19. Interdepartmental interaction model on the extracurricular activities of students in the city of Surgut in the quality management system of the municipal state institution "Information and Methodological Center"

    OpenAIRE

    Loseva E. A.

    2018-01-01

    in this article the author considers interdepartmental interaction model in the field of extracurricular activities of students in the quality management system. The topic is examined on the example of the municipal state institution "Information and Methodological Center".

  20. Application of kaizen methodology to foster departmental engagement in quality improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knechtges, Paul; Decker, Michael Christopher

    2014-12-01

    The Toyota Production System, also known as Lean, is a structured approach to continuous quality improvement that has been developed over the past 50 years to transform the automotive manufacturing process. In recent years, these techniques have been successfully applied to quality and safety improvement in the medical field. One of these techniques is kaizen, which is the Japanese word for "good change." The central tenant of kaizen is the quick analysis of the small, manageable components of a problem and the rapid implementation of a solution with ongoing, real-time reassessment. Kaizen adds an additional "human element" that all stakeholders, not just management, must be involved in such change. Because of the small size of the changes involved in a kaizen event and the inherent focus on human factors and change management, a kaizen event can serve as good introduction to continuous quality improvement for a radiology department. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  1. [Quality of life - methodology and clinical practice aspects with a focus on ocular medicine].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franke, G H; Gall, C

    2008-08-01

    Due to the demographic development in western industrialised countries, the proportion of visually impaired persons is likely to increase in the future. Currently there is a shift in scientific recognition from relative neglect of psychopathological distress in the visually impaired to better notice of disease-related subjective impairments that are detectable with specific questionnaire measures. Visual acuity primarily determines the subjective rating of visual functioning independent from the eye disease. Ophthalmic patients who show only mild symptoms from a medical point of view normally suffer considerably diminished vision-related quality of life with respect to physical, functional, mental, and social aspects. Treatment effects have been shown using vision-related quality-of-life measures for different ophthalmic diseases, particularly cataract surgery. Assessment of vision-related quality of life provides a meaningful complement to objective data.

  2. Patient-reported Outcomes in Randomised Controlled Trials of Prostate Cancer: Methodological Quality and Impact on Clinical Decision Making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efficace, Fabio; Feuerstein, Michael; Fayers, Peter; Cafaro, Valentina; Eastham, James; Pusic, Andrea; Blazeby, Jane

    2014-01-01

    Context Patient-reported outcomes (PRO) data from randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are increasingly used to inform patient-centred care as well as clinical and health policy decisions. Objective The main objective of this study was to investigate the methodological quality of PRO assessment in RCTs of prostate cancer (PCa) and to estimate the likely impact of these studies on clinical decision making. Evidence acquisition A systematic literature search of studies was undertaken on main electronic databases to retrieve articles published between January 2004 and March 2012. RCTs were evaluated on a predetermined extraction form, including (1) basic trial demographics and clinical and PRO characteristics; (2) level of PRO reporting based on the recently published recommendations by the International Society for Quality of Life Research; and (3) bias, assessed using the Cochrane Risk of Bias tool. Studies were systematically analysed to evaluate their relevance for supporting clinical decision making. Evidence synthesis Sixty-five RCTs enrolling a total of 22 071 patients were evaluated, with 31 (48%) in patients with nonmetastatic disease. When a PRO difference between treatments was found, it related in most cases to symptoms only (n = 29, 58%). Although the extent of missing data was generally documented (72% of RCTs), few reported details on statistical handling of this data (18%) and reasons for dropout (35%). Improvements in key methodological aspects over time were found. Thirteen (20%) RCTs were judged as likely to be robust in informing clinical decision making. Higher-quality PRO studies were generally associated with those RCTs that had higher internal validity. Conclusions Including PRO in RCTs of PCa patients is critical for better evaluating the treatment effectiveness of new therapeutic approaches. Marked improvements in PRO quality reporting over time were found, and it is estimated that at least one-fifth of PRO RCTs have provided sufficient

  3. New methodology to implement quality control programs in medical imaging departments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Furquim, Tania A.C.; Yanikian, Denise; Costa, Paulo R.

    1996-01-01

    The implementation of quality control programmes is studied in order to assure a better performance in medical imaging departments. The necessity of a continuous training of all technicians involved is highlighted. The contribution of these professionals is emphasized as fundamental to the success of the project

  4. Quality approach in in vivo nuclear medicine - Certification V2010 - Methodological guide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abdelmoumene, Nafissa; Ferreol, Dominique; Blondet, Emmanuelle; Bonardel, Gerald; Bourrel, Francois; Broglia, Jean Marc; Guilabert, Nadine; Israel, Jean-Marc; Machacek, Catherine; Martineau, Antoine; Remy, Herve; Rousseliere, Francis; Abelmann, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    This document first presents the different components of the activity in in-vivo nuclear medicine: techniques (functional imagery, vectorized internal radiotherapy, cases outside the nuclear medicine department), team composition and missions, radiation protection regulations, benefits and risks. Then, it addresses the quality approach: quality management system defined according to a process-oriented approach, documentation. It proposes a sheet to assess the implementation of the quality approach. This sheet contains 129 criteria which are related to management (strategy, activity steering and coordination), to support functions (management of human resources and abilities, management of radioactive sources and wastes, radio-pharmacy within the nuclear medicine department, management of medical devices, information system), to patient taking on (management of appointments and patient identification, imagery examination justification, patient reception, patients presenting risks and peculiar situations, checking before radio-pharmaceutical drug administering, taking on for diagnosis purpose, taking for therapeutic purposes), and to assessment, analysis and improvement (management of undesirable events associated with cares, quality follow-up for continuous improvement)

  5. Quality evaluation of health information system's architectures developed using the HIS-DF methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López, Diego M; Blobel, Bernd; Gonzalez, Carolina

    2010-01-01

    Requirement analysis, design, implementation, evaluation, use, and maintenance of semantically interoperable Health Information Systems (HIS) have to be based on eHealth standards. HIS-DF is a comprehensive approach for HIS architectural development based on standard information models and vocabulary. The empirical validity of HIS-DF has not been demonstrated so far. Through an empirical experiment, the paper demonstrates that using HIS-DF and HL7 information models, semantic quality of HIS architecture can be improved, compared to architectures developed using traditional RUP process. Semantic quality of the architecture has been measured in terms of model's completeness and validity metrics. The experimental results demonstrated an increased completeness of 14.38% and an increased validity of 16.63% when using the HIS-DF and HL7 information models in a sample HIS development project. Quality assurance of the system architecture in earlier stages of HIS development presumes an increased quality of final HIS systems, which supposes an indirect impact on patient care.

  6. Interrelationships between man, energy, and water quality: a new methodology for integrative analyses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaplan, E.; Thode, H.C. Jr.

    1979-01-01

    The STORET/MSP option was used to obtain county aggregated information on ambient water quality for sixty parameters during the period 1950 to 1978. Masks, extended EXTRACT specifications and bounds on allowable values limited inclusion of erroneous data. Remark codes were required to aggregate STORET parameters to obtain increased numbers of observations. Numerous statistical analyses led to the conclusions that medians were more useful than means, that trimming on number of observations was required to eliminate counties with extreme values, and that many parameters required logarithmic transformation to be useful in regional analyses. County aggregated data for nineteen water quality parameters were examined in terms of their ability to describe qualitative chemical characteristics of water. Anion--cation balances as well as expected relationships between conductivity and other parameters were correctly accounted for. Factor analysis indicated the existence of three principal components describing patterns between metal ions, non-metal ions, and alkalinity-bicarbonate, respectively. These factors were used in place of the original complete set of water quality parameters in a structural equation approach describing relationships between variables of mans activites. It was found that counties with high industrial electric consumption, farming and mineral shipments tended to have increased levels of most water quality parameters. It was also found that simpler path diagrams may be indicated to reduce the effects of redundancy in adequately describing energy--water relationships

  7. Control Charts in Healthcare Quality Improvement A Systematic Review on Adherence to Methodological Criteria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koetsier, A.; van der Veer, S. N.; Jager, K. J.; Peek, N.; de Keizer, N. F.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives: Use of Shewhart control charts in quality improvement (QI) initiatives is increasing. These charts are typically used in one or more phases of the Plan Do Study Act (PDSA) cycle to monitor summaries of process and outcome data, abstracted from clinical information systems, over time. We

  8. An evaluation of contaminated estuarine sites using sediment quality guidelines and ecological assessment methodologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulton, M; Key, P; Wirth, E; Leight, A K; Daugomah, J; Bearden, D; Sivertsen, S; Scott, G

    2006-10-01

    Toxic contaminants may enter estuarine ecosystems through a variety of pathways. When sediment contaminant levels become sufficiently high, they may impact resident biota. One approach to predict sediment-associated toxicity in estuarine ecosystems involves the use of sediment quality guidelines (ERMs, ERLs) and site-specific contaminant chemistry while a second approach utilizes site-specific ecological sampling to assess impacts at the population or community level. The goal of this study was to utilize an integrated approach including chemical contaminant analysis, sediment quality guidelines and grass shrimp population monitoring to evaluate the impact of contaminants from industrial sources. Three impacted sites and one reference site were selected for study. Grass shrimp populations were sampled using a push-netting approach. Sediment samples were collected at each site and analyzed for metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides. Contaminant levels were then compared to sediment quality guidelines. In general, grass shrimp population densities at the sites decreased as the ERM quotients increased. Grass shrimp densities were significantly reduced at the impacted site that had an ERM exceedance for chromium and the highest Mean ERM quotient. Regression analysis indicated that sediment chromium concentrations were negatively correlated with grass shrimp density. Grass shrimp size was reduced at two sites with intermediate levels of contamination. These findings support the use of both sediment quality guidelines and site-specific population monitoring to evaluate the impacts of sediment-associated contaminants in estuarine systems.

  9. Combining Statistical Methodologies in Water Quality Monitoring in a Hydrological Basin - Space and Time Approaches

    OpenAIRE

    Costa, Marco; A. Manuela Gonçalves

    2012-01-01

    In this work are discussed some statistical approaches that combine multivariate statistical techniques and time series analysis in order to describe and model spatial patterns and temporal evolution by observing hydrological series of water quality variables recorded in time and space. These approaches are illustrated with a data set collected in the River Ave hydrological basin located in the Northwest region of Portugal.

  10. Data fusion methodologies for food and beverage authentication and quality assessment – A review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Borràs, Eva; Ferré, Joan; Boqué, Ricard; Mestres, Montserrat; Aceña, Laura; Busto, Olga

    2015-01-01

    The ever increasing interest of consumers for safety, authenticity and quality of food commodities has driven the attention towards the analytical techniques used for analyzing these commodities. In recent years, rapid and reliable sensor, spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques have emerged that, together with multivariate and multiway chemometrics, have improved the whole control process by reducing the time of analysis and providing more informative results. In this progression of more and better information, the combination (fusion) of outputs of different instrumental techniques has emerged as a means for increasing the reliability of classification or prediction of foodstuff specifications as compared to using a single analytical technique. Although promising results have been obtained in food and beverage authentication and quality assessment, the combination of data from several techniques is not straightforward and represents an important challenge for chemometricians. This review provides a general overview of data fusion strategies that have been used in the field of food and beverage authentication and quality assessment. - Highlights: • Multivariate data fusion is used in food authentication and quality assessment. • Data fusion approaches and their applications are reviewed. • Data preprocessing, variable selection and feature extraction are considered. • Model selection and validation are also considered.

  11. Data fusion methodologies for food and beverage authentication and quality assessment – A review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Borràs, Eva [iSens Group, Department of Analytical Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Campus Sescelades, 43007 Tarragona (Spain); Ferré, Joan, E-mail: joan.ferre@urv.cat [Chemometrics, Qualimetrics and Nanosensors Group, Department of Analytical Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Campus Sescelades, 43007 Tarragona (Spain); Boqué, Ricard [Chemometrics, Qualimetrics and Nanosensors Group, Department of Analytical Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Campus Sescelades, 43007 Tarragona (Spain); Mestres, Montserrat; Aceña, Laura; Busto, Olga [iSens Group, Department of Analytical Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Campus Sescelades, 43007 Tarragona (Spain)

    2015-09-03

    The ever increasing interest of consumers for safety, authenticity and quality of food commodities has driven the attention towards the analytical techniques used for analyzing these commodities. In recent years, rapid and reliable sensor, spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques have emerged that, together with multivariate and multiway chemometrics, have improved the whole control process by reducing the time of analysis and providing more informative results. In this progression of more and better information, the combination (fusion) of outputs of different instrumental techniques has emerged as a means for increasing the reliability of classification or prediction of foodstuff specifications as compared to using a single analytical technique. Although promising results have been obtained in food and beverage authentication and quality assessment, the combination of data from several techniques is not straightforward and represents an important challenge for chemometricians. This review provides a general overview of data fusion strategies that have been used in the field of food and beverage authentication and quality assessment. - Highlights: • Multivariate data fusion is used in food authentication and quality assessment. • Data fusion approaches and their applications are reviewed. • Data preprocessing, variable selection and feature extraction are considered. • Model selection and validation are also considered.

  12. Improved Temperature Sounding and Quality Control Methodology Using AIRS/AMSU Data: The AIRS Science Team Version 5 Retrieval Algorithm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susskind, Joel; Blaisdell, John M.; Iredell, Lena; Keita, Fricky

    2009-01-01

    This paper describes the AIRS Science Team Version 5 retrieval algorithm in terms of its three most significant improvements over the methodology used in the AIRS Science Team Version 4 retrieval algorithm. Improved physics in Version 5 allows for use of AIRS clear column radiances in the entire 4.3 micron CO2 absorption band in the retrieval of temperature profiles T(p) during both day and night. Tropospheric sounding 15 micron CO2 observations are now used primarily in the generation of clear column radiances .R(sub i) for all channels. This new approach allows for the generation of more accurate values of .R(sub i) and T(p) under most cloud conditions. Secondly, Version 5 contains a new methodology to provide accurate case-by-case error estimates for retrieved geophysical parameters and for channel-by-channel clear column radiances. Thresholds of these error estimates are used in a new approach for Quality Control. Finally, Version 5 also contains for the first time an approach to provide AIRS soundings in partially cloudy conditions that does not require use of any microwave data. This new AIRS Only sounding methodology, referred to as AIRS Version 5 AO, was developed as a backup to AIRS Version 5 should the AMSU-A instrument fail. Results are shown comparing the relative performance of the AIRS Version 4, Version 5, and Version 5 AO for the single day, January 25, 2003. The Goddard DISC is now generating and distributing products derived using the AIRS Science Team Version 5 retrieval algorithm. This paper also described the Quality Control flags contained in the DISC AIRS/AMSU retrieval products and their intended use for scientific research purposes.

  13. Using Indigenist and Indigenous methodologies to connect to deeper understandings of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' quality of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kite, Elaine; Davy, Carol

    2015-12-01

    The lack of a common description makes measuring the concept of quality of life (QoL) a challenge. Whether QoL incorporates broader social features or is attributed to health conditions, the diverse range of descriptions applied by various disciplines has resulted in a concept that is multidimensional and vague. The variety of theoretical conceptualisations of QoL confounds and confuses even the most astute. Measuring QoL in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations is even more challenging. Instruments commonly developed and used to measure QoL are often derived from research methodologies shaped by Western cultural perspectives. Often they are simply translated for use among culturally and linguistically diverse Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. This has implications for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations whose perceptions of health are derived from within their specific cultures, value systems and ways of knowing and being. Interconnections and relationships between themselves, their communities, their environment and the natural and spiritual worlds are complex. The way in which their QoL is currently measured indicates that very little attention is given to the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' beliefs or the ways in which those beliefs shape or give structure and meaning to their health and their lives. The use of Indigenist or Indigenous methodologies in defining what Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples believe gives quality to their lives is imperative. These methodologies have the potential to increase the congruency between their perceptions of QoL and instruments to measure it.

  14. Modelling the effects of transglutaminase and L-ascorbic acid on substandard quality wheat flour by response surface methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Šimurina Olivera D.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In recent decade, there have been observed extreme variations in climatic conditions which in combination with inadequate agro techniques lead to decreased quality of mercantile wheat, actally flour. The application of improvers can optimise the quality of substandard wheat flour. This paper focuses to systematic analysis of individual and interaction effects of ascorbic acid and transglutaminase as dough strengthening improvers. The effects were investigated using the Response Surface Methodology. Transglutaminase had much higher linear effect on the rheological and fermentative properties of dough from substandard flour than L-ascorbic acid. Both transglutaminase and L-ascorbic acid additions had a significant linear effect on the increase of bread specific volume. Effects of transglutaminase and ascorbic acid are dependent on the applied concentrations and it is necessary to determine the optimal concentration in order to achieve the maximum quality of the dough and bread. Optimal levels of tested improvers were determined using appropriate statistical techniques which applied the desirability function. It was found that the combination of 30 mg/kg of transglutaminase and 75.8 mg/kg of L-ascorbic acid achieved positive synergistic effect on rheological and fermentative wheat dough properties, as well on textural properties and specific volume of bread made from substandard quality flour.

  15. Evaluation of chips quality by the analysis of two different harvesting methodologies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pari, L.; Civitarese, V.; Del Giudice, A. [Council for Research in Agriculture, Agricultural Engineering Research Unit, Rome (Italy)

    2010-07-01

    The Council for Research in Agriculture, Agricultural Engineering Research Unit (CRA-ING) in Rome, Italy has developed an innovative short-rotation forestry (SRF) harvesting system. The system involves a 2 step operation, notably the tree felling and inter-row windrowing performed by a feller windrower equipment; and subsequent chipping performed by a harvester equipped with a pick-up device. The low moisture content of the windrowed trees at harvesting time affects their physical qualities and mechanical strength throughout the chipping operation. The purpose of this study was to analyze the moisture losses of windrowed trees, in relation to the windrow location, on field storage and weather condition. In addition, the study characterized chips quality changes during on field storage by the 2 different harvesting systems. The innovative 2-step system was compared with the traditional 1-step harvesting system.

  16. Methodology for the construction of a physical phantom for quality control of images in digital radiography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santos, Tayline T.; Vieira, Jose Wilson; Oliveira, Alex Cristovao H. de; Lima, Fernando R. de Andrade

    2013-01-01

    The advancement of technology in recent years has provided the production of increasingly sophisticated devices, aiming to acquire medical images with high technical level and also facilitate the operational readiness of the equipment. In order to ensure the most accurate diagnosis with minimum dose without exposing patients to obtain data and verify the performance of a radiographic system for quality control purposes we use the so-called phantoms. Phantoms are physical or computational models used to simulate the transport of ionizing radiation, their interactions in the tissues of the human body and evaluate the deposition of energy. Besides, they are made from materials with behavior similar to human tissues when exposed to ionizing radiation - the so-called tissue-equivalent materials. This paper describes the construction of a physical phantom that allows the execution of the main acceptance tests of the quality control protocols in digital radiography

  17. Data fusion methodologies for food and beverage authentication and quality assessment - a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borràs, Eva; Ferré, Joan; Boqué, Ricard; Mestres, Montserrat; Aceña, Laura; Busto, Olga

    2015-09-03

    The ever increasing interest of consumers for safety, authenticity and quality of food commodities has driven the attention towards the analytical techniques used for analyzing these commodities. In recent years, rapid and reliable sensor, spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques have emerged that, together with multivariate and multiway chemometrics, have improved the whole control process by reducing the time of analysis and providing more informative results. In this progression of more and better information, the combination (fusion) of outputs of different instrumental techniques has emerged as a means for increasing the reliability of classification or prediction of foodstuff specifications as compared to using a single analytical technique. Although promising results have been obtained in food and beverage authentication and quality assessment, the combination of data from several techniques is not straightforward and represents an important challenge for chemometricians. This review provides a general overview of data fusion strategies that have been used in the field of food and beverage authentication and quality assessment. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Association between prospective registration and overall reporting and methodological quality of systematic reviews: a meta-epidemiological study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge, Long; Tian, Jin-Hui; Li, Ya-Nan; Pan, Jia-Xue; Li, Ge; Wei, Dang; Xing, Xin; Pan, Bei; Chen, Yao-Long; Song, Fu-Jian; Yang, Ke-Hu

    2018-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the differences in main characteristics, reporting and methodological quality between prospectively registered and nonregistered systematic reviews. PubMed was searched to identify systematic reviews of randomized controlled trials published in 2015 in English. After title and abstract screening, potentially relevant reviews were divided into three groups: registered non-Cochrane reviews, Cochrane reviews, and nonregistered reviews. For each group, random number tables were generated in Microsoft Excel, and the first 50 eligible studies from each group were randomly selected. Data of interest from systematic reviews were extracted. Regression analyses were conducted to explore the association between total Revised Assessment of Multiple Systematic Review (R-AMSTAR) or Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) scores and the selected characteristics of systematic reviews. The conducting and reporting of literature search in registered reviews were superior to nonregistered reviews. Differences in 9 of the 11 R-AMSTAR items were statistically significant between registered and nonregistered reviews. The total R-AMSTAR score of registered reviews was higher than nonregistered reviews [mean difference (MD) = 4.82, 95% confidence interval (CI): 3.70, 5.94]. Sensitivity analysis by excluding the registration-related item presented similar result (MD = 4.34, 95% CI: 3.28, 5.40). Total PRISMA scores of registered reviews were significantly higher than nonregistered reviews (all reviews: MD = 1.47, 95% CI: 0.64-2.30; non-Cochrane reviews: MD = 1.49, 95% CI: 0.56-2.42). However, the difference in the total PRISMA score was no longer statistically significant after excluding the item related to registration (item 5). Regression analyses showed similar results. Prospective registration may at least indirectly improve the overall methodological quality of systematic reviews, although its impact

  19. Palliative healthcare: cost reduction and quality enhancement using end-of-life survey methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falls, Christopher Edward

    2008-01-01

    American medical institutions throughout the 20th century prescribed high customer satisfaction, but when it came to death, largely ignored it. An accelerated accumulation of esoteric medical information and the application of this knowledge to affect new cures and longer lives instilled an unquestioning reverence for the medical community among the patient population. Diminishing marginal gains in life expectancy, escalating costs related to life sustaining technologies, and a psychographic shift in the dominant consumer base have challenged this traditional reverence. Armed with unprecedented access to medical information, a more knowledgeable and assertive patient population has emerged in the 21st century to institute its own standards of what constitutes quality health care. In terms of end of life care, this has meant recognition that the emotional needs of the dying have been largely underserved by the current American medical model. Patients and their families are no longer willing to accept the traditional medical perspective of death as failure and have numerous international palliative care models that serve as benchmarks of success when it comes to quality of dying. When cure is a possibility, Americans will pursue it at all costs, but when it is not a possibility, they want honest communication and the opportunity to say good-bye to their loved ones. In the context of these emergent needs, life review is offered as a solution. The value proposition targets not only dying patients and their families, but also society as a whole.

  20. Non-Communicable Disease Clinical Practice Guidelines in Brazil: A Systematic Assessment of Methodological Quality and Transparency.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caroline de Godoi Rezende Costa Molino

    Full Text Available Annually, non-communicable diseases (NCDs kill 38 million people worldwide, with low and middle-income countries accounting for three-quarters of these deaths. High-quality clinical practice guidelines (CPGs are fundamental to improving NCD management. The present study evaluated the methodological rigor and transparency of Brazilian CPGs that recommend pharmacological treatment for the most prevalent NCDs.We conducted a systematic search for CPGs of the following NCDs: asthma, atrial fibrillation, benign prostatic hyperplasia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure, coronary artery disease and/or stable angina, dementia, depression, diabetes, gastroesophageal reflux disease, hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis. CPGs comprising pharmacological treatment recommendations were included. No language or year restrictions were applied. CPGs were excluded if they were merely for local use and referred to NCDs not listed above. CPG quality was independently assessed by two reviewers using the Appraisal of Guidelines Research and Evaluation instrument, version II (AGREE II."Scope and purpose" and "clarity and presentation" domains received the highest scores. Sixteen of 26 CPGs were classified as low quality, and none were classified as high overall quality. No CPG was recommended without modification (77% were not recommended at all. After 2009, 2 domain scores ("rigor of development" and "clarity and presentation" increased (61% and 73%, respectively. However, "rigor of development" was still rated < 30%.Brazilian healthcare professionals should be concerned with CPG quality for the treatment of selected NCDs. Features that undermined AGREE II scores included the lack of a multidisciplinary team for the development group, no consideration of patients' preferences, insufficient information regarding literature searches, lack of selection criteria, formulating recommendations, authors' conflict of

  1. Verification of dosimetric methodology for auditing radiotherapy quality under non-reference condition in Hubei province

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ma Xinxing; Luo Suming; He Zhijian; Zhou Wenshan

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To verify the reliability of TLD-based quality audit for radiotherapy dosimetry of medical electron accelerator in non-reference condition by monitoring the dose variations from electron beams with different field sizes and 45° wedge and the dose variations from photon beams with different field sizes and source-skin distance. Methods: Both TLDs and finger ionization chambers were placed at a depth of 10 cm in water to measure the absorbed dose from photon beams, and also placed at the depth of maximum dose from electron beams under non-reference condition. TLDs were then mailed to National Institute for Radiological Protection, China CDC for further measurement. Results: Among the 70 measuring points for photon beams, 58 points showed the results with a relative error less than ±7.0% (IAEA's acceptable deviation: ±7.0%) between TLDs and finger ionization chambers measurements, and the percentage of qualified point numbers was 82.8%. After corrected by Ps value, 62 points were qualified and the percentage was up to 88.6%. All of the measuring points for electron beams, with the total number of 24, presented a relative error within ±5.0% (IAEA's acceptable deviation: ±5.0%) between TLDs and finger ioization cylindrical chambers measurements. Conclusions: TLD-based quality audit is convenient for determining radiotherapy dosimetric parameters of electron beams in non-reference condition and can improve the accuracy of the measuring parameters in connection with finger chambers. For electron beams of 5 MeV < E_0 < 10 MeV, the absorbed dose parameters measured by finger ionization chambers, combined with TLD audit, can help obtain the precise and reliable results. (authors)

  2. Prevalence of high blood pressure in Brazilian adolescents and quality of the employed methodological procedures: systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Gabriella Pereira de Andrada Magalhães

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: To review the literature on studies that estimated the prevalence of high blood pressure (HBP or systemic arterial hypertension (SAH in Brazilian adolescents, considering the employed methodological procedures. METHODS: Bibliographical research of prevalence studies of HBP/SAH in adolescents from 1995 to 2010. The search was conducted in the electronic databases PubMed/Medline, Lilacs, SciELO, and Isi Adolec. The descriptors "hypertension", "BP", "teen", "students", "cross-sectional", "prevalence" and "Brazil" were used in Portuguese and English. Furthermore, a score ranging from 0 to 18 based on Recommendations for Blood Pressure Measurement in Humans and Experimental Animals and the VI Brazilian Guidelines of Hypertension was elaborated, in order to analyze the procedures used to measure BP in studies. RESULTS: Twenty-one articles were identified, mostly published in the last 10 years, and 90.5% were performed in school-based and regions of the Southeast, Northeast and South. The prevalence of HBP/SAH ranged from 2.5 to 30.9%. The score of the studies ranged from 0 to 16. A significant negative correlation (rho = -0.504; p = 0.020 was observed between the prevalence of HBP/SAH and the score of BP measurement quality. CONCLUSION: The great variability of PAE/SAH estimates appears to be influenced by methodological procedures used in the studies.

  3. Artificial intelligence methodologies applied to quality control of the positioning services offered by the Red Andaluza de Posicionamiento (RAP network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio José Gil

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available On April 26, 2012, Elena Giménez de Ory defend-ed her Ph.D. thesis at University of Jaén, entitled: “Robust methodologies applied to quality control of the positioning services offered by the Red Andaluza de Posicionamiento (RAP network”. Elena Giménez de Ory defended her dissertation in a publicly open presentation held in the Higher Polytechnic School at the University of Jaén, and was able to comment on every question raised by her thesis committee and the audience. The thesis was supervised by her advisor, Prof. Antonio J. Gil Cruz, and the rest of his thesis committee, Prof. Manuel Sánchez de la Orden, Dr. Antonio Miguel Ruiz Armenteros and Dr. Gracia Rodríguez Caderot. The thesis has been read and approved by his thesis committee, receiving the highest rating. All of them were present at the presentation.

  4. Evaluation of the environmental epidemiologic data and methodology for the air quality standard in Beijing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xu; Jiang, Yanfeng; Yin, Ling; Liu, Bo; Du, Pengfei; Hassan, Mujtaba; Wang, Shigong; Li, Tanshi

    2017-09-01

    To evaluate the relationship between exposure to air pollutants and respiratory emergency room visits, a generalized additive model (GAM) was used to analyze the exposure-effect relationship between air pollutants and respiratory emergency room visits. The results showed that NO2, SO2, and PM10 have positive relationships with respiratory disease. Concentration increases of 10 μg/m3 in NO2, SO2, and PM10 corresponded to 3.90% (95%CI 3.56-4.25), 0.81% (95%CI -0.09-1.72), and 0.64% (95%CI 0.55-0.74) increases in respiratory emergency room visits. In addition, there is a strong synergic effect of PM10 and NO2 on respiratory diseases. The threshold values of the national standard grade II limits used in Beijing should be adjusted. An appropriate standard could effectively promote a significant decline in respiratory room visits and would eventually be beneficial to air quality management in residential areas.

  5. A Proposed Methodology to Assess the Quality of Public Use Management in Protected Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Santos, Maria; Benayas, Javier

    2012-07-01

    In recent years, the goal of nature preservation has faced, almost worldwide, an increase in the number of visitors who are interested in experiencing protected areas resources, landscapes and stories. Spain is a good example of this process. The rapidly increasing numbers of visitors have prompted administrations and managers to offer and develop a broad network of facilities and programs in order to provide these visitors with information, knowledge and recreation. But, are we doing it the best way? This research focuses on developing and applying a new instrument for evaluating the quality of visitor management in parks. Different areas are analyzed with this instrument (78 semi-quantitative indicators): planning and management capacity (planning, funding, human resources), monitoring, reception, information, interpretation, environmental education, training, participation and volunteer's programs. Thus, we attempt to gain a general impression of the development of the existing management model, detecting strengths and weaknesses. Although Spain's National Parks constituted the specific context within which to develop the evaluation instrument, the design thereof is intended to provide a valid, robust and flexible method for application to any system, network or set of protected areas in other countries. This paper presents the instrument developed, some results obtained following its application to Spanish National parks, along with a discussion on the limits and validity thereof.

  6. [Methodological quality evaluation of randomized controlled trials for traditional Chinese medicines for treatment of sub-health].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Jun; Liao, Xing; Zhao, Hui; Li, Zhi-Geng; Wang, Nan-Yue; Wang, Li-Min

    2016-11-01

    To evaluate the methodological quality of the randomized controlled trials(RCTs) for traditional Chinese medicines for treatment of sub-health, in order to provide a scientific basis for the improvement of clinical trials and systematic review. Such databases as CNKI, CBM, VIP, Wanfang, EMbase, Medline, Clinical Trials, Web of Science and Cochrane Library were searched for RCTS for traditional Chinese medicines for treatment of sub-health between the time of establishment and February 29, 2016. Cochrane Handbook 5.1 was used to screen literatures and extract data, and CONSORT statement and CONSORT for traditional Chinese medicine statement were adopted as the basis for quality evaluation. Among the 72 RCTs included in this study, 67 (93.05%) trials described the inter-group baseline data comparability, 39(54.17%) trials described the unified diagnostic criteria, 28(38.89%) trials described the unified standards of efficacy, 4 (5.55%) trials mentioned the multi-center study, 19(26.38%) trials disclosed the random distribution method, 6(8.33%) trials used the random distribution concealment, 15(20.83%) trials adopted the method of blindness, 3(4.17%) study reported the sample size estimation in details, 5 (6.94%) trials showed a sample size of more than two hundred, 19(26.38%) trials reported the number of withdrawal, defluxion cases and those lost to follow-up, but only 2 trials adopted the ITT analysis,10(13.89%) trials reported the follow-up results, none of the trial reported the test registration and the test protocol, 48(66.7%) trials reported all of the indicators of expected outcomes, 26(36.11%) trials reported the adverse reactions and adverse events, and 4(5.56%) trials reported patient compliance. The overall quality of these randomized controlled trials for traditional Chinese medicines for treatment of sub-health is low, with methodological defects in different degrees. Therefore, it is still necessary to emphasize the correct application of principles

  7. The methodological quality of guidelines for hospital-acquired pneumonia and ventilator-associated pneumonia: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ambaras Khan, R; Aziz, Z

    2018-05-02

    Clinical practice guidelines serve as a framework for physicians to make decisions and to support best practice for optimizing patient care. However, if the guidelines do not address all the important components of optimal care sufficiently, the quality and validity of the guidelines can be reduced. The objectives of this study were to systematically review current guidelines for hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP) and ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), evaluate their methodological quality and highlight the similarities and differences in their recommendations for empirical antibiotic and antibiotic de-escalation strategies. This review is reported in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) statement. Electronic databases including MEDLINE, CINAHL, PubMed and EMBASE were searched up to September 2017 for relevant guidelines. Other databases such as NICE, Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) and the websites of professional societies were also searched for relevant guidelines. The quality and reporting of included guidelines were assessed using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation II (AGREE-II) instrument. Six guidelines were eligible for inclusion in our review. Among 6 domains of AGREE-II, "clarity of presentation" scored the highest (80.6%), whereas "applicability" scored the lowest (11.8%). All the guidelines supported the antibiotic de-escalation strategy, whereas the majority of the guidelines (5 of 6) recommended that empirical antibiotic therapy should be implemented in accordance with local microbiological data. All the guidelines suggested that for early-onset HAP/VAP, therapy should start with a narrow spectrum empirical antibiotic such as penicillin or cephalosporins, whereas for late-onset HAP/VAP, the guidelines recommended the use of a broader spectrum empirical antibiotic such as the penicillin extended spectrum carbapenems and glycopeptides. Expert guidelines

  8. Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Obesity Risk in Children and Adolescents: A Systematic Analysis on How Methodological Quality May Influence Conclusions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucher Della Torre, Sophie; Keller, Amélie; Laure Depeyre, Jocelyne; Kruseman, Maaike

    2016-04-01

    In the context of a worldwide high prevalence of childhood obesity, the role of sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption as a cause of excess weight gain remains controversial. Conflicting results may be due to methodological issues in original studies and in reviews. The aim of this review was to systematically analyze the methodology of studies investigating the influence of SSB consumption on risk of obesity and obesity among children and adolescents, and the studies' ability to answer this research question. A systematic review of cohort and experimental studies published until December 2013 in peer-reviewed journals was performed on Medline, CINAHL, Web of Knowledge, and ClinicalTrials.gov. Studies investigating the influence of SSB consumption on risk of obesity and obesity among children and adolescents were included, and methodological quality to answer this question was assessed independently by two investigators using the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Quality Criteria Checklist. Among the 32 identified studies, nine had positive quality ratings and 23 studies had at least one major methodological issue. Main methodological issues included SSB definition and inadequate measurement of exposure. Studies with positive quality ratings found an association between SSB consumption and risk of obesity or obesity (n=5) (ie, when SSB consumption increased so did obesity) or mixed results (n=4). Studies with a neutral quality rating found a positive association (n=7), mixed results (n=9), or no association (n=7). The present review shows that the majority of studies with strong methodology indicated a positive association between SSB consumption and risk of obesity or obesity, especially among overweight children. In addition, study findings highlight the need for the careful and precise measurement of the consumption of SSBs and of important confounders. Copyright © 2016 Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Electronic symptom reporting between patient and provider for improved health care service quality: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials. part 2: methodological quality and effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, Monika Alise; Berntsen, Gro K Rosvold; Schuster, Tibor; Henriksen, Eva; Horsch, Alexander

    2012-10-03

    We conducted in two parts a systematic review of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on electronic symptom reporting between patients and providers to improve health care service quality. Part 1 reviewed the typology of patient groups, health service innovations, and research targets. Four innovation categories were identified: consultation support, monitoring with clinician support, self-management with clinician support, and therapy. To assess the methodological quality of the RCTs, and summarize effects and benefits from the methodologically best studies. We searched Medline, EMBASE, PsycINFO, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and IEEE Xplore for original studies presented in English-language articles between 1990 and November 2011. Risk of bias and feasibility were judged according to the Cochrane recommendation, and theoretical evidence and preclinical testing were evaluated according to the Framework for Design and Evaluation of Complex Interventions to Improve Health. Three authors assessed the risk of bias and two authors extracted the effect data independently. Disagreement regarding bias assessment, extraction, and interpretation of results were resolved by consensus discussions. Of 642 records identified, we included 32 articles representing 29 studies. No articles fulfilled all quality requirements. All interventions were feasible to implement in a real-life setting, and theoretical evidence was provided for almost all studies. However, preclinical testing was reported in only a third of the articles. We judged three-quarters of the articles to have low risk for random sequence allocation and approximately half of the articles to have low risk for the following biases: allocation concealment, incomplete outcome data, and selective reporting. Slightly more than one fifth of the articles were judged as low risk for blinding of outcome assessment. Only 1 article had low risk of bias for blinding of participants and personnel. We excluded 12

  10. Optimization of edible coating formulations for improving postharvest quality and shelf life of pear fruit using response surface methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nandane, A S; Dave, Rudri K; Rao, T V Ramana

    2017-01-01

    The effect of composite edible films containing soy protein isolate (SPI) in combination with additives like hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) and olive oil on 'Babughosha' pear ( Pyrus communis L.) stored at ambient temperature (28 ± 5 °C and 60 ± 10% RH) was evaluated using Response surface methodology (RSM). A total of 30 edible coating formulations comprising of SPI (2-6%, w/v), olive oil (0.7-1.1%, v/v), HPMC (0.1-0.5%, w/v) and potassium sorbate (0-0.4% w/v) were evaluated for optimizing the most suitable combination. Quality parameters like weight loss%, TSS, pH and titrable acidity of the stored pears were selected as response variables for optimization. The optimization procedure was carried out using RSM. It was observed that the response variables were mainly effected by concentration of SPI and olive oil in the formulation. Edible coating comprising of SPI 5%, HPMC 0.40%, olive oil 1% and potassium sorbate 0.22% was found to be most suitable combination for pear fruit with predicted values of response variables indicated as weight loss% 3.50, pH 3.41, TSS 11.13 and TA% 0.513.

  11. Roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa L.) and soybean oil effects on quality characteristics of pork patties studied by response surface methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Eunkyung; Joo, Nami

    2013-07-01

    Response surface methodology was used to investigate the effect and interactions of processing variables such as roselle extract (0.1-1.3%), soybean oil (5-20%) on physicochemical, textural and sensory properties of cooked pork patties. It was found that reduction in thickness, pH, L* and b* values decreased; however, water-holding capacity, reduction in diameter and a* values increased, respectively, as the amount of roselle increased. Soybean oil addition increased water-holding capacity, reduction in thickness, b* values of the patties. The hardness depended on the roselle and soybean oil added, as its linear effect was negative at proselle and soybean oil. The maximum overall quality score (5.42) was observed when 12.5 g of soybean oil and 0.7 g of roselle extract was added. The results of this optimization study would be useful for meat industry that tends to increase the product yield for patties using the optimum levels of ingredients by RSM. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. An investigation of laser cutting quality of 22MnB5 ultra high strength steel using response surface methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tahir, Abdul Fattah Mohd; Aqida, Syarifah Nur

    2017-07-01

    In hot press forming, changes of mechanical properties in boron steel blanks have been a setback in trimming the final shape components. This paper presents investigation of kerf width and heat affected zone (HAZ) of ultra high strength 22MnB5 steel cutting. Sample cutting was conducted using a 4 kW Carbon Dioxide (CO2) laser machine with 10.6 μm wavelength with the laser spot size of 0.2 mm. A response surface methodology (RSM) using three level Box-Behnken design of experiment was developed with three factors of peak power, cutting speed and duty cycle. The parameters were optimised for minimum kerf width and HAZ formation. Optical evaluation using MITUTOYO TM 505 were conducted to measure the kerf width and HAZ region. From the findings, laser duty cycle was crucial to determine cutting quality of ultra-high strength steel; followed by cutting speed and laser power. Meanwhile, low power intensity with continuous wave contributes the narrowest kerf width formation and least HAZ region.

  13. Methodological quality of diagnostic accuracy studies on non-invasive coronary CT angiography: influence of QUADAS (Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies included in systematic reviews) items on sensitivity and specificity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schueler, Sabine; Walther, Stefan; Schuetz, Georg M. [Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Freie Universitaet Berlin, Charite Medical School, Department of Radiology, Berlin (Germany); Schlattmann, Peter [University Hospital of Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Department of Medical Statistics, Informatics, and Documentation, Jena (Germany); Dewey, Marc [Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Freie Universitaet Berlin, Charite Medical School, Department of Radiology, Berlin (Germany); Charite, Institut fuer Radiologie, Berlin (Germany)

    2013-06-15

    To evaluate the methodological quality of diagnostic accuracy studies on coronary computed tomography (CT) angiography using the QUADAS (Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies included in systematic reviews) tool. Each QUADAS item was individually defined to adapt it to the special requirements of studies on coronary CT angiography. Two independent investigators analysed 118 studies using 12 QUADAS items. Meta-regression and pooled analyses were performed to identify possible effects of methodological quality items on estimates of diagnostic accuracy. The overall methodological quality of coronary CT studies was merely moderate. They fulfilled a median of 7.5 out of 12 items. Only 9 of the 118 studies fulfilled more than 75 % of possible QUADAS items. One QUADAS item (''Uninterpretable Results'') showed a significant influence (P = 0.02) on estimates of diagnostic accuracy with ''no fulfilment'' increasing specificity from 86 to 90 %. Furthermore, pooled analysis revealed that each QUADAS item that is not fulfilled has the potential to change estimates of diagnostic accuracy. The methodological quality of studies investigating the diagnostic accuracy of non-invasive coronary CT is only moderate and was found to affect the sensitivity and specificity. An improvement is highly desirable because good methodology is crucial for adequately assessing imaging technologies. (orig.)

  14. Methodological quality of diagnostic accuracy studies on non-invasive coronary CT angiography: influence of QUADAS (Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies included in systematic reviews) items on sensitivity and specificity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schueler, Sabine; Walther, Stefan; Schuetz, Georg M.; Schlattmann, Peter; Dewey, Marc

    2013-01-01

    To evaluate the methodological quality of diagnostic accuracy studies on coronary computed tomography (CT) angiography using the QUADAS (Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies included in systematic reviews) tool. Each QUADAS item was individually defined to adapt it to the special requirements of studies on coronary CT angiography. Two independent investigators analysed 118 studies using 12 QUADAS items. Meta-regression and pooled analyses were performed to identify possible effects of methodological quality items on estimates of diagnostic accuracy. The overall methodological quality of coronary CT studies was merely moderate. They fulfilled a median of 7.5 out of 12 items. Only 9 of the 118 studies fulfilled more than 75 % of possible QUADAS items. One QUADAS item (''Uninterpretable Results'') showed a significant influence (P = 0.02) on estimates of diagnostic accuracy with ''no fulfilment'' increasing specificity from 86 to 90 %. Furthermore, pooled analysis revealed that each QUADAS item that is not fulfilled has the potential to change estimates of diagnostic accuracy. The methodological quality of studies investigating the diagnostic accuracy of non-invasive coronary CT is only moderate and was found to affect the sensitivity and specificity. An improvement is highly desirable because good methodology is crucial for adequately assessing imaging technologies. (orig.)

  15. Investigating the association between medication adherence and health-related quality of life in COPD : Methodological challenges when using a proxy measure of adherence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boland, Melinde R. S.; van Boven, Job F. M.; Kruis, Annemarije L.; Chavannes, Niels H.; van der Molen, Thys; Goossens, Lucas M. A.; Rutten-van Molken, Maureen P. M. H.

    Background: The association between non-adherence to medication and health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) remains poorly understood. Different ways to deal with methodological challenges to estimate this association have probably contributed to

  16. The quality of reporting methods and results of cost-effectiveness analyses in Spain: a methodological systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalá-López, Ferrán; Ridao, Manuel; Alonso-Arroyo, Adolfo; García-Altés, Anna; Cameron, Chris; González-Bermejo, Diana; Aleixandre-Benavent, Rafael; Bernal-Delgado, Enrique; Peiró, Salvador; Tabarés-Seisdedos, Rafael; Hutton, Brian

    2016-01-07

    Cost-effectiveness analysis has been recognized as an important tool to determine the efficiency of healthcare interventions and services. There is a need for evaluating the reporting of methods and results of cost-effectiveness analyses and establishing their validity. We describe and examine reporting characteristics of methods and results of cost-effectiveness analyses conducted in Spain during more than two decades. A methodological systematic review was conducted with the information obtained through an updated literature review in PubMed and complementary databases (e.g. Scopus, ISI Web of Science, National Health Service Economic Evaluation Database (NHS EED) and Health Technology Assessment (HTA) databases from Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD), Índice Médico Español (IME) Índice Bibliográfico Español en Ciencias de la Salud (IBECS)). We identified cost-effectiveness analyses conducted in Spain that used quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) as outcome measures (period 1989-December 2014). Two reviewers independently extracted the data from each paper. The data were analysed descriptively. In total, 223 studies were included. Very few studies (10; 4.5 %) reported working from a protocol. Most studies (200; 89.7 %) were simulation models and included a median of 1000 patients. Only 105 (47.1 %) studies presented an adequate description of the characteristics of the target population. Most study interventions were categorized as therapeutic (189; 84.8 %) and nearly half (111; 49.8 %) considered an active alternative as the comparator. Effectiveness of data was derived from a single study in 87 (39.0 %) reports, and only few (40; 17.9 %) used evidence synthesis-based estimates. Few studies (42; 18.8 %) reported a full description of methods for QALY calculation. The majority of the studies (147; 65.9 %) reported that the study intervention produced "more costs and more QALYs" than the comparator. Most studies (200; 89.7 %) reported favourable

  17. Testing the validity of a translated pharmaceutical therapy-related quality of life instrument, using qualitative 'think aloud' methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renberg, T; Kettis Lindblad, A; Tully, M P

    2008-06-01

    In pharmacy practice, there is a need for valid and reliable instruments to study patient-reported outcomes. One potential candidate is a pharmaceutical therapy-related quality of life (PTRQoL) instrument. This study explored the face and content validity, including cognitive aspects of question answering of a PTRQoL instrument, translated from English to Swedish. A sample of 16 customers at Swedish community pharmacies, was asked to fill in the PTRQoL instrument while constantly reporting how they reasoned. The resulting interviews and concurrent probing, were audio-taped, transcribed verbatim and analysed using constant comparison method. The relation between the measurement and its theoretical underpinning was challenged. Respondents neglected to read the instructions, used response options in an unpredictable way, and varied in their interpretations of the items. The combination of 'think-aloud', retrospective probing and qualitative analysis informed on the validity of the PTRQoL instrument and was valuable in questionnaire development. The study also identified specific problems that could be relevant for other instruments probing patients' medicines-related attitudes and behaviour.

  18. [Evaluation of the methodological quality of the Rémic (microbiology guidelines - bacteriology and mycology) of the Société française de microbiologie].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonfrède, Michèle; Couaillac, Jean Paul; Augereau, Christine; De Moüy, Danny; Lepargneur, Jean Pierre; Szymanowicz, Anton; Watine, Joseph

    2011-01-01

    We have evaluated the methodological quality of the Rémic (microbiology guidelines - bacteriology and mycology) of the Société française de microbiologie (edition2007), using to AGREE criteria, which are consensual at an international level, in particular at the the World Health Organisation (WHO) and at the European Union. The methodological quality of the Rémic appears to be sub-optimal. These shortcomings in quality are mainly observed in AGREE domain n° 5 (applicability), in AGREE item n° 5 (patients' opinions were not considered), and in AGREE item n° 23 (conflicts of interest were not declared). The users of the Rémic must be aware of these few methodological shortcomings in order for them to be careful before they put its recommendation in practice. In conclusion, we advise the editors of the Rémic to insert at least a methodological chapter in their next edition.

  19. Model development for mechanical properties and weld quality class of friction stir welding using multi-objective Taguchi method and response surface methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohamed, Mohamed Ackiel; Manurung, Yupiter HP; Berhan, Mohamed Nor

    2015-01-01

    This study presents the effect of the governing parameters in friction stir welding (FSW) on the mechanical properties and weld quality of a 6mm thick 6061 T651 Aluminum alloy butt joint. The main FSW parameters, the rotational and traverse speed were optimized based on multiple mechanical properties and quality features, which focus on the tensile strength, hardness and the weld quality class using the multi-objective Taguchi method (MTM). Multi signal to noise ratio (MSNR) was employed to determine the optimum welding parameters for MTM while further analysis concerning the significant level determination was accomplished via the well-established analysis of variance (ANOVA). Furthermore, the first order model for predicting the mechanical properties and weld quality class is derived by applying response surface methodology (RSM). Based on the experimental confirmation test, the proposed method can effectively estimate the mechanical properties and weld quality class which can be used to enhance the welding performance in FSW or other applications.

  20. Model development for mechanical properties and weld quality class of friction stir welding using multi-objective Taguchi method and response surface methodology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohamed, Mohamed Ackiel [University Kuala Lumpur Malaysia France Institute, Bandar Baru Bangi (Malaysia); Manurung, Yupiter HP; Berhan, Mohamed Nor [Universiti Teknologi MARA, Shah Alam (Malaysia)

    2015-06-15

    This study presents the effect of the governing parameters in friction stir welding (FSW) on the mechanical properties and weld quality of a 6mm thick 6061 T651 Aluminum alloy butt joint. The main FSW parameters, the rotational and traverse speed were optimized based on multiple mechanical properties and quality features, which focus on the tensile strength, hardness and the weld quality class using the multi-objective Taguchi method (MTM). Multi signal to noise ratio (MSNR) was employed to determine the optimum welding parameters for MTM while further analysis concerning the significant level determination was accomplished via the well-established analysis of variance (ANOVA). Furthermore, the first order model for predicting the mechanical properties and weld quality class is derived by applying response surface methodology (RSM). Based on the experimental confirmation test, the proposed method can effectively estimate the mechanical properties and weld quality class which can be used to enhance the welding performance in FSW or other applications.

  1. An integrated quality function deployment and capital budgeting methodology for occupational safety and health as a systems thinking approach: the case of the construction industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bas, Esra

    2014-07-01

    In this paper, an integrated methodology for Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and a 0-1 knapsack model is proposed for occupational safety and health as a systems thinking approach. The House of Quality (HoQ) in QFD methodology is a systematic tool to consider the inter-relationships between two factors. In this paper, three HoQs are used to consider the interrelationships between tasks and hazards, hazards and events, and events and preventive/protective measures. The final priority weights of events are defined by considering their project-specific preliminary weights, probability of occurrence, and effects on the victim and the company. The priority weights of the preventive/protective measures obtained in the last HoQ are fed into a 0-1 knapsack model for the investment decision. Then, the selected preventive/protective measures can be adapted to the task design. The proposed step-by-step methodology can be applied to any stage of a project to design the workplace for occupational safety and health, and continuous improvement for safety is endorsed by the closed loop characteristic of the integrated methodology. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses on psoriasis: role of funding sources, conflict of interest and bibliometric indices as predictors of methodological quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-García, F; Ruano, J; Aguilar-Luque, M; Gay-Mimbrera, J; Maestre-Lopez, B; Sanz-Cabanillas, J L; Carmona-Fernández, P J; González-Padilla, M; Vélez García-Nieto, A; Isla-Tejera, B

    2017-06-01

    The quality of systematic reviews and meta-analyses on psoriasis, a chronic inflammatory skin disease that severely impairs quality of life and is associated with high costs, remains unknown. To assess the methodological quality of systematic reviews published on psoriasis. After a comprehensive search in MEDLINE, Embase and the Cochrane Database (PROSPERO: CDR42016041611), the quality of studies was assessed by two raters using the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) tool. Article metadata and journal-related bibliometric indices were also obtained. Systematic reviews were classified as low (0-4), moderate (5-8) or high (9-11) quality. A prediction model for methodological quality was fitted using principal component and multivariate ordinal logistic regression analyses. We classified 220 studies as high (17·2%), moderate (55·0%) or low (27·8%) quality. Lower compliance rates were found for AMSTAR question (Q)5 (list of studies provided, 11·4%), Q10 (publication bias assessed, 27·7%), Q4 (status of publication included, 39·5%) and Q1 (a priori design provided, 40·9%). Factors such as meta-analysis inclusion [odds ratio (OR) 6·22; 95% confidence interval (CI) 2·78-14·86], funding by academic institutions (OR 2·90, 95% CI 1·11-7·89), Article Influence score (OR 2·14, 95% CI 1·05-6·67), 5-year impact factor (OR 1·34, 95% CI 1·02-1·40) and article page count (OR 1·08, 95% CI 1·02-1·15) significantly predicted higher quality. A high number of authors with a conflict of interest (OR 0·90, 95% CI 0·82-0·99) was significantly associated with lower quality. The methodological quality of systematic reviews published about psoriasis remains suboptimal. The type of funding sources and author conflicts may compromise study quality, increasing the risk of bias. © 2017 British Association of Dermatologists.

  3. MR imaging of the articular cartilage of the knee with arthroscopy as gold standard: assessment of methodological quality of clinical studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duchateau, Florence; Berg, Bruno C. vande

    2002-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the methodological quality of articles addressing the value of MR imaging of the knee cartilage with arthroscopy as a standard. Relevant papers were selected after Medline review (MEDLINE database search including the terms ''cartilage'' ''knee'', ''MR'' and ''arthroscopy''). Two observers reviewed independently 29 selected articles to determine how each study had met 15 individual standards that had been previously developed to assess the methodological quality of clinical investigations. The following criteria were met in variable percentage of articles including adequate definition of purpose (100%), statistical analysis (90%), avoidance of verification bias (86%), patient population description (83%), reference standard (79%), review bias (79%), study design (66%), inclusion criteria (41%) and method of analysis (41.5%), avoidance of diagnostic-review bias (24%), exclusion criteria (21%), indeterminate examination results (17%), analysis criteria (14%), interobserver reliability (14%) and intraobserver reliability (7%). The assessment of the methodological quality of clinical investigations addressing the value of MR imaging in the evaluation of the articular cartilage of the knee with arthroscopy as the standard of reference demonstrated that several standards were rarely met in the literature. Efforts should be made to rely on clearly defined lesion criteria and to determine reliability of the observations. (orig.)

  4. 78 FR 63972 - Notice of Proposed Methodology for the 2014 Delaware River and Bay Water Quality Assessment Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-25

    ... Water Quality Assessment Report AGENCY: Delaware River Basin Commission. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: Notice....us , with ``Water Quality Assessment 2014'' as the subject line; via fax to 609-883-9522; via U.S. Mail to DRBC, Attn: Water Quality Assessment 2014, P.O. Box 7360, West Trenton, NJ 08628-0360; via...

  5. 76 FR 50188 - Notice of Proposed Methodology for the Delaware River and Bay Integrated List Water Quality...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-12

    ... Integrated List Water Quality Assessment AGENCY: Delaware River Basin Commission. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY... Integrated List Water Quality Assessment is available for review and comment. DATES: Comments must be... should have the phrase ``Water Quality Assessment 2012'' in the subject line and should include the name...

  6. Rating the methodological quality of single-subject designs and n-of-1 trials: introducing the Single-Case Experimental Design (SCED) Scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tate, Robyn L; McDonald, Skye; Perdices, Michael; Togher, Leanne; Schultz, Regina; Savage, Sharon

    2008-08-01

    Rating scales that assess methodological quality of clinical trials provide a means to critically appraise the literature. Scales are currently available to rate randomised and non-randomised controlled trials, but there are none that assess single-subject designs. The Single-Case Experimental Design (SCED) Scale was developed for this purpose and evaluated for reliability. Six clinical researchers who were trained and experienced in rating methodological quality of clinical trials developed the scale and participated in reliability studies. The SCED Scale is an 11-item rating scale for single-subject designs, of which 10 items are used to assess methodological quality and use of statistical analysis. The scale was developed and refined over a 3-year period. Content validity was addressed by identifying items to reduce the main sources of bias in single-case methodology as stipulated by authorities in the field, which were empirically tested against 85 published reports. Inter-rater reliability was assessed using a random sample of 20/312 single-subject reports archived in the Psychological Database of Brain Impairment Treatment Efficacy (PsycBITE). Inter-rater reliability for the total score was excellent, both for individual raters (overall ICC = 0.84; 95% confidence interval 0.73-0.92) and for consensus ratings between pairs of raters (overall ICC = 0.88; 95% confidence interval 0.78-0.95). Item reliability was fair to excellent for consensus ratings between pairs of raters (range k = 0.48 to 1.00). The results were replicated with two independent novice raters who were trained in the use of the scale (ICC = 0.88, 95% confidence interval 0.73-0.95). The SCED Scale thus provides a brief and valid evaluation of methodological quality of single-subject designs, with the total score demonstrating excellent inter-rater reliability using both individual and consensus ratings. Items from the scale can also be used as a checklist in the design, reporting and critical

  7. Water- and sediment-quality effects on Pimephales promelas spawning vary along an agriculture-to-urban land-use gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corsi, Steven R; Klaper, Rebecca D; Weber, Daniel N; Bannerman, Roger T

    2011-10-15

    Many streams in the U.S. are "impaired" due to anthropogenic influence. For watershed managers to achieve practical understanding of these impairments, a multitude of factors must be considered, including point and nonpoint-source influence on water quality. A spawning assay was developed in this study to evaluate water- and sediment-quality effects that influenced Pimephales promelas (fathead minnow) egg production over a gradient of urban and agricultural land use in 27 small watersheds in Eastern Wisconsin. Six pairs of reproducing fathead minnows were contained in separate mesh cartridges within one larger flow-through chamber. Water- and sediment quality were sampled for an array of parameters. Egg production was monitored for each pair providing an assessment of spawning success throughout the 21-day test periods. Incidences of low dissolved oxygen (DO) in many of these streams negatively impacted spawning success. Nine of 27 streams experienced DO less than 3.1mg/L and 15 streams experienced DO less than 4.8mg/L. Low DO was observed in urban and agricultural watersheds, but the upper threshold of minimum DO decreased with increasing urban development. An increase in specific conductance was related to a decrease in spawning success. In previous studies for streams in this region, specific conductance had a linear relation with chloride, suggesting the possibility that chloride could be a factor in egg production. Egg production was lower at sites with substantial urban development, but sites with low egg production were not limited to urban sites. Degradation of water- and sediment-quality parameters with increasing urban development is indicated for multiple parameters while patterns were not detected for others. Results from this study indicate that DO must be a high priority watershed management consideration for this region, specific conductance should be investigated further to determine the mechanism of the relation with egg production, and water- and

  8. Implications of the Integration of Computing Methodologies into Conventional Marketing Research upon the Quality of Students' Understanding of the Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayman, Umut; Serim, Mehmet Cenk

    2004-01-01

    It has been an ongoing concern among academicians teaching social sciences to develop a better methodology to ease understanding of students. Since verbal emphasis is at the core of the concepts within such disciplines it has been observed that the adequate or desired level of conceptual understanding of the students to transforms the theories…

  9. Are methodological quality and completeness of reporting associated with citation-based measures of publication impact? A secondary analysis of a systematic review of dementia biomarker studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackinnon, Shona; Drozdowska, Bogna A; Hamilton, Michael; Noel-Storr, Anna H; McShane, Rupert; Quinn, Terry

    2018-03-22

    To determine whether methodological and reporting quality are associated with surrogate measures of publication impact in the field of dementia biomarker studies. We assessed dementia biomarker studies included in a previous systematic review in terms of methodological and reporting quality using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS) and Standards for Reporting of Diagnostic Accuracy (STARD), respectively. We extracted additional study and journal-related data from each publication to account for factors shown to be associated with impact in previous research. We explored associations between potential determinants and measures of publication impact in univariable and stepwise multivariable linear regression analyses. We aimed to collect data on four measures of publication impact: two traditional measures-average number of citations per year and 5-year impact factor of the publishing journal and two alternative measures-the Altmetric Attention Score and counts of electronic downloads. The systematic review included 142 studies. Due to limited data, Altmetric Attention Scores and electronic downloads were excluded from the analysis, leaving traditional metrics as the only analysed outcome measures. We found no relationship between QUADAS and traditional metrics. Citation rates were independently associated with 5-year journal impact factor (β=0.42; pcitation rates (β=0.45; pCitation rates and 5-year journal impact factor appear to measure different dimensions of impact. Citation rates were weakly associated with completeness of reporting, while neither traditional metric was related to methodological rigour. Our results suggest that high publication usage and journal outlet is not a guarantee of quality and readers should critically appraise all papers regardless of presumed impact. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2018. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted

  10. Use of Multiple Methodologies for Developing a Customer-Oriented Model of Total Quality Management in Higher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahney, Sangeeta

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Educational institutes must embrace the principles of total quality management (TQM) if they seek to remain competitive, and survive and succeed in the long run. An educational institution must embrace the principles of quality management and incorporate them into all of their activities. Starting with a theoretical background, the paper…

  11. A review of quality assessment of the methodology used in guidelines and systematic reviews on oral mucositis.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Potting, C.; Mistiaen, P.; Poot, E.; Blijlevens, N.; Donnelly, P.; Achterberg, T. van

    2009-01-01

    Aims and objectives: The objective of this study was to identify and to assess the quality of evidence-based guidelines and systematic reviews we used in the case of oral mucositis, to apply general quality criteria for the prevention and treatment of oral mucositis in patients receiving

  12. Effects of Differences in Dietary Protein and Varying the Interval from Collection of Bovine Embryos to Freezing on Embryo Quality and Viability

    OpenAIRE

    Jousan, Frank Dean

    2002-01-01

    High levels of dietary protein may be detrimental to reproductive performance in cattle. The objective of Exp. 1 was to determine the effects of differences in dietary protein on the production and quality of bovine embryos collected from superovulated donors. Angus cows were randomly assigned to receive one of three experimental diets: a daily ration of 5.7 kg poultry litter, 2.0 kg hay, 3.1 kg corn, and 0.5 kg peanut hulls (LITTER; n = 15); a daily ration of 6.2 kg peanut hulls, 2.2 k...

  13. The effects of boron supplementation of layer diets varying in calcium and phosphorus concentrations on performance, egg quality, bone strength and mineral constituents of serum, bone and faeces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küçükyilmaz, K; Erkek, R; Bozkurt, M

    2014-01-01

    1. A 2 × 3 factorial arrangement of treatments was used to investigate the effects of dietary calcium (Ca), phosphorus (P), and supplemental boron (B) (0, 75, and 150 mg/kg) on the performance, egg quality, bone strength, and mineral constituents in bone, serum and faeces. 2. A reduction by 18% in the dietary Ca-P concentration from the recommended levels for the hen strain reduced (P properties did not corroborate the hypothesis that B is a trace element playing an important role in mineral metabolism and bone strength through an interaction with Ca, P and Mg.

  14. A Methodology for Measuring Voice Quality Using PESQ and Interactive Voice Response in the GSM Channel Designed by OpenBTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pavol Partila

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This article discusses a methodology for rating the quality of mobile calls. Majority telecommunications service from the perspective of the whole world is using mobile telephony networks. One of the problems affecting this service and its quality are landscape barriers, which prevent the spread signal. Price and complex construction of classic BTS does not allow their dense distribution. In such cases, one solution is to use OpenBTS technology. Design of OpenBTS is more available, so it can be applied to much more places and more complex points. Purpose of this measurement is a model for effective stations deployment, due to shape and distribution of local barriers that reduce signal power, and thus the quality of speech. GSM access point for our mobile terminals is OpenBTS USRP N210 station. The PESQ method for evaluating of speech quality is compared with the subjective evaluation, which provides Asterisk PBX with IVR call back. Measurement method was taken into account the call quality depending on terminal position. The measured results and its processing bring knowledge to use this technology for more complicated locations with degraded signal level and increases the quality of voice services in telecommunications.

  15. The bystander cell-killing effect mediated by nitric oxide in normal human fibroblasts varies with irradiation dose but not with radiation quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokota, Yuichiro; Funayama, Tomoo; Mutou-Yoshihara, Yasuko; Ikeda, Hiroko; Kobayashi, Yasuhiko

    2015-05-01

    To investigate the dependence of the bystander cell-killing effect on radiation dose and quality, and to elucidate related molecular mechanisms. Normal human fibroblast WI-38 cells were irradiated with 0.125 - 2 Gy of γ-rays or carbon ions and were co-cultured with non-irradiated cells. Survival rates of bystander cells were investigated using the colony formation assays, and nitrite concentrations in the medium were measured using the modified Saltzman method. Survival rates of bystander cells decreased with doses of γ-rays and carbon ions of ≤ 0.5 Gy. Treatment of the specific nitric oxide (NO) radical scavenger prevented reductions in survival rates of bystander cells. Moreover, nitrite concentrations increased with doses of less than 0.25 Gy (γ-rays) and 1 Gy (carbon ions). The dose responses of increased nitrite concentrations as well as survival reduction were similar between γ-rays and carbon ions. In addition, negative relationships were observed between survival rates and nitrite concentrations. The bystander cell-killing effect mediated by NO radicals in normal human fibroblasts depends on irradiation doses of up to 0.5 Gy, but not on radiation quality. NO radical production appears to be an important determinant of γ-ray- and carbon-ion-induced bystander effects.

  16. The effect of food label cues on perceptions of quality and purchase intentions among high-involvement consumers with varying levels of nutrition knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, Amber; Long, Marilee

    2012-01-01

    To determine whether differences in nutrition knowledge affected how women (a high-involvement group) interpreted intrinsic cues (ingredient list) and extrinsic cues ("all natural" label) on food labels. A 2 (intrinsic cue) × 2 (extrinsic cue) × 2 (nutrition knowledge expert vs novice) within-subject factorial design was used. Participants were 106 female college students (61 experts, 45 novices). Dependent variables were perception of product quality and purchase intention. As predicted by the elaboration likelihood model, experts used central route processing to scrutinize intrinsic cues and make judgments about food products. Novices used peripheral route processing to make simple inferences about the extrinsic cues in labels. Consumers' levels of nutrition knowledge influenced their ability to process food labels. The United States Food and Drug Administration should regulate the "all natural" food label, because this claim is likely to mislead most consumers. Copyright © 2012 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. F-15 inlet/engine test techniques and distortion methodologies studies. Volume 2: Time variant data quality analysis plots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, C. H.; Spong, E. D.; Hammock, M. S.

    1978-01-01

    Time variant data quality analysis plots were used to determine if peak distortion data taken from a subscale inlet model can be used to predict peak distortion levels for a full scale flight test vehicle.

  18. Variables of briquetting process and quality of forestry biomass briquettes Variáveis do processo de briquetagem e qualidade de briquetes de biomassa florestal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thielly Schmidt Furtado

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available

    In the quest for recovery of waste generated from forest production to the process of industrial transformation of the biomass it was developed the process of briquetting. The cluster of wood particles facilitates the operations of handling of combustible material in addition to concentrating the available energy in terms of volume. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether the raw material affects the quality of the briquette and verify the effect of pressure applied during the mechanical and energy  characteristics of the final product, and to evaluate the behavior of the material mix (MIX compared to pure materials. The briquettes were produced in a pilot  briquetter, hydraulic piston, 120 °C with a constant pressure of 50 bar for eight minutes and 65, 95 or
    130 bar for two minutes. Six briquettes were used for each treatment. The characteristics evaluated were calorific value (GCV, bulk density and compressive strength. The raw material has a greater influence on the quality of briquettes than the compaction pressure. The low pressure is the most suitable for Pinus sp forest biomass briquettes. In this, MIX submitted satisfactory quality of briquettes with PCS 4,773 kcal kg-1, density 1220 kg m-³ and compressive strength of 167 kgf cm-2.

     

    doi: 10.4336/2010.pfb.30.62.101

    Na busca pelo aproveitamento dos resíduos gerados desde a produção florestal até os processos de transformação industrial da biomassa, desenvolveu-se o processo de briquetagem. A aglomeração de partículas de madeira facilita as operações de  manuseio do material combustível, além de concentrar a energia disponível em termos de volume. O objetivo do presente trabalho foi avaliar se a matéria-prima tem influência na qualidade do briquete e verificar o efeito da pressão aplicada durante o processo nas  características energéticas e mecânicas do produto final, além de avaliar o comportamento da  mistura de materiais

  19. Effects of varying ruminally undegradable protein supplementation on forage digestion, nitrogen metabolism, and urea kinetics in Nellore cattle fed low-quality tropical forage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batista, E D; Detmann, E; Titgemeyer, E C; Valadares Filho, S C; Valadares, R F D; Prates, L L; Rennó, L N; Paulino, M F

    2016-01-01

    Effects of supplemental RDP and RUP on nutrient digestion, N metabolism, urea kinetics, and muscle protein degradation were evaluated in Nellore heifers () consuming low-quality signal grass hay (5% CP and 80% NDF, DM basis). Five ruminally and abomasally cannulated Nellore heifers (248 ± 9 kg) were used in a 5 × 5 Latin square. Treatments were the control (no supplement) and RDP supplementation to meet 100% of the RDP requirement plus RUP provision to supply 0, 50, 100, or 150% of the RUP requirement. Supplemental RDP (casein plus NPN) was ruminally dosed twice daily, and RUP supply (casein) was continuously infused abomasally. Jugular infusion of [NN]-urea with measurement of enrichment in urine was used to evaluate urea kinetics. The ratio of urinary 3-methylhistidine to creatinine was used to estimate skeletal muscle protein degradation. Forage NDF intake (2.48 kg/d) was not affected ( ≥ 0.37) by supplementation, but supplementation did increase ruminal NDF digestion ( Urea entry rate and gastrointestinal entry rate of urea were increased by supplementation ( urea entry rate and tended ( = 0.07) to linearly increase gastrointestinal entry rate of urea. Urea use for anabolic purposes tended ( = 0.07) to be increased by supplementation, and RUP provision also tended ( = 0.08) to linearly increase the amount of urea used for anabolism. The fraction of recycled urea N incorporated into microbial N was greater ( urea from the renal tubule than did supplemented heifers. Overall, unsupplemented heifers had greater mobilization of AA from myofibrillar protein, which provided N for urea synthesis and subsequent recycling. Supplemental RUP, when RDP was supplied, not only increased N retention but also supported increased urea N recycling and increased ruminal microbial protein synthesis.

  20. Impact of Removable Partial Dental Prostheses on the Oral Health-Related Quality of Life of a South African Cohort with Varied Distributions of Missing Posterior Teeth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Sadika; Chikte, Usuf; Omar, Ridwaan

    2017-10-25

    To determine the impact of removable partial dental prostheses on satisfying the daily functioning and quality of life (QoL) of adult patients with different distributions of missing posterior teeth. A cross-sectional interventional study was carried out on 80 patients having variously distributed posteriorly shortened and interrupted arches. Treatment comprised provision of partial dentures by senior dental students, supervised by senior clinical teachers who had knowledge of the potential benefits of the shortened dental arch (SDA) concept. The Oral Impacts on Daily Performance Index was completed before and 6 months after prosthetic treatment across groups comprising Kennedy Classes I, II, and III arches. Analysis included descriptive statistics and associations and comparisons between variables. Mean age of patients was 57.4 years (SD = 13.1), many were retired (72.2%), and a majority were females (60%). Most patients lived in urban areas (95%), and were largely unemployed (63.3%). At pretreatment, only 31.3% of patients reported having good dental health and satisfaction with their current oral state, while 82.5% said they had a great need for treatment. The negative oral impacts that were most frequently experienced were those of eating (67.5%), smiling (50%), and being emotionally disturbed (63.8%). Post-treatment, 76.3% indicated good oral health and satisfaction with no significant differences between the 3 Kennedy groups. Any further negative impacts were reported mostly for Kennedy Classes I and II. Overall, significant reductions of negative impacts were observed following treatment with dentures, across the 3 Kennedy groups, with respect to improved function, satisfaction, and oral health-related QoL. The findings confirm the reliance by partially dentate patients in all 3 Kennedy groups on dentures for improved oral health, although the possible benefits of the SDA concept as an alternative treatment option was not specifically explored. © 2017 by

  1. Development of a new multimedia instrument to measure cancer-specific quality of life in Portuguese-speaking patients with varying literacy skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paiva, Carlos Eduardo; Siquelli, Felipe Augusto Ferreira; Zaia, Gabriela Rossi; de Andrade, Diocésio Alves Pinto; Borges, Marcos Aristoteles; Jácome, Alexandre A; Giroldo, Gisele Augusta Sousa Nascimento; Santos, Henrique Amorim; Hahn, Elizabeth A; Uemura, Gilberto; Paiva, Bianca Sakamoto Ribeiro

    2016-01-01

    To develop and validate a new multimedia instrument to measure health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in Portuguese-speaking patients with cancer. A mixed-methods study conducted in a large Brazilian Cancer Hospital. The instrument was developed along the following sequential phases: identification of HRQOL issues through qualitative content analysis of individual interviews, evaluation of the most important items according to the patients, review of the literature, evaluation by an expert committee, and pretesting. In sequence, an exploratory factor analysis was conducted (pilot testing, n = 149) to reduce the number of items and to define domains and scores. The psychometric properties of the IQualiV-OG-21 were measured in a large multicentre Brazilian study (n = 323). A software containing multimedia resources were developed to facilitate self-administration of IQualiV-OG-21; its feasibility and patients' preferences ("paper and pencil" vs. software) were further tested (n = 54). An exploratory factor analysis reduced the 30-item instrument to 21 items. The IQualiV-OG-21 was divided into 6 domains: emotional, physical, existential, interpersonal relationships, functional and financial. The multicentre study confirmed that it was valid and reliable. The electronic multimedia instrument was easy to complete and acceptable to patients. Regarding preferences, 61.1 % of them preferred the electronic format in comparison with the paper and pencil format. The IQualiV-OG-21 is a new valid and reliable multimedia HRQOL instrument that is well-understood, even by patients with low literacy skills, and can be answered quickly. It is a useful new tool that can be translated and tested in other cultures and languages.

  2. Effect of house type on growth performance, litter quality and incidence of foot lesions in broiler chickens reared in varying stocking density

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danial Farhadi

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available To evaluate the effect of different stocking density on broiler performance two repeated experiments were conducted in a conventional and an environmentally controlled house using a total of 10,232 broiler chickens. In each experiment, a total of 5,116 one-day old Ross 308 broiler chickens were randomly distributed to 16 floor pens arranged within each house at density of 16, 18, 20 or 22 birds/m2. Results showed that the broiler chickens grown in environmentally controlled house had greater (p<0.05 weight gain, kg body weight (BW/m2, production efficiency index (PEI and spleen relative weight at day 42 and also had lower (p<0.05 feed conversion ratio and mortality rate during 21 to 42 and 1 to 42 days of age than those reared in conventional house. Weight gain, feed intake and PEI decreased (p<0.05 and kg BW/m2 and carcass yield increased (p<0.05, when broiler density increased more than 20 birds/m2. House type and stocking density had no effect on relative weights of liver, abdominal fat, bursa of Fabricius, and litter pH and ammonia emission. However, higher litter moisture in conventional house led to a greater (p<0.05 incidence of foot pad lesions and hock burns, which intensified with increased density. In conclusion, broiler chickens reared in environmentally controlled house had superior performance, higher liability, and lower litter moisture content and foot lesions. Moreover, broiler rearing at the density of 22 birds/m2 adversely affected growth performance and foot quality, despite the greater kg BW/m2 compared to broilers grown at lower densities.

  3. Non-pharmacological sleep interventions for youth with chronic health conditions: a critical review of the methodological quality of the evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Cary A; Kuo, Melissa; Phillips, Leah; Berry, Robyn; Tan, Maria

    2013-07-01

    Restorative sleep is clearly linked with well-being in youth with chronic health conditions. This review addresses the methodological quality of non-pharmacological sleep intervention (NPSI) research for youth with chronic health conditions. The Guidelines for Critical Review (GCR) and the Effective Public Health Practice Project Quality Assessment Tool (EPHPP) were used in the review. The search yielded 31 behavioural and 10 non-behavioural NPSI for review. Most studies had less than 10 participants. Autism spectrum disorders, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorders, down syndrome, intellectual disabilities, and visual impairments were the conditions that most studies focused upon. The global EPHPP scores indicated most reviewed studies were of weak quality. Only 7 studies were rated as moderate, none were strong. Studies rated as weak quality frequently had recruitment issues; non-blinded participants/parents and/or researchers; and used outcome measures without sound psychometric properties. Little conclusive evidence exists for NPSIs in this population. However, NPSIs are widely used and these preliminary studies demonstrate promising outcomes. There have not been any published reports of negative outcomes that would preclude application of the different NPSIs on a case-by-case basis guided by clinical judgement. These findings support the need for more rigorous, applied research. • Methodological Quality of Sleep Research • Disordered sleep (DS) in youth with chronic health conditions is pervasive and is important to rehabilitation therapists because DS contributes to significant functional problems across psychological, physical and emotional domains. • Rehabilitation therapists and other healthcare providers receive little education about disordered sleep and are largely unaware of the range of assessment and non-pharmacological intervention strategies that exist. An evidence-based website of pediatric sleep resources can be found at http

  4. Quality of Work Life: Theoretical and Methodological Problems, and Presentation of a New Model and Measuring Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martel, Jean-Pierre; Dupuis, Gilles

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: Ever since the concept of Quality of Work Life (QWL) was first used over 30 years ago, a range of definitions and theoretical constructs have succeeded each other with the aim of mitigating the many problems facing the concept. A historical overview of the concept of QWL is presented here. Given the lack of consensus concerning the…

  5. 40 CFR Appendix A to Part 132 - Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative Methodologies for Development of Aquatic Life Criteria and...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    .... If the acute toxicity of the material to aquatic animals has been shown to be related to a water... material to aquatic animals has been shown to be related to a water quality characteristic such as hardness... a material in the water column to which an aquatic community can be exposed briefly without...

  6. Methodology for calculating perception of the user experience of the quality of monitored integrated telecommunications operator services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    2011-01-01

    The invention relates to a method for calculating perception of the user experience of the quality of monitored integrated telecommunications operator services. For this purpose, data from the monitoring of user services is used, along with questionnaires previously completed by a representative

  7. Integrating cost information with health management support system: an enhanced methodology to assess health care quality drivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohli, R; Tan, J K; Piontek, F A; Ziege, D E; Groot, H

    1999-08-01

    Changes in health care delivery, reimbursement schemes, and organizational structure have required health organizations to manage the costs of providing patient care while maintaining high levels of clinical and patient satisfaction outcomes. Today, cost information, clinical outcomes, and patient satisfaction results must become more fully integrated if strategic competitiveness and benefits are to be realized in health management decision making, especially in multi-entity organizational settings. Unfortunately, traditional administrative and financial systems are not well equipped to cater to such information needs. This article presents a framework for the acquisition, generation, analysis, and reporting of cost information with clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction in the context of evolving health management and decision-support system technology. More specifically, the article focuses on an enhanced costing methodology for determining and producing improved, integrated cost-outcomes information. Implementation issues and areas for future research in cost-information management and decision-support domains are also discussed.

  8. Methodology for setup and data processing of mobile air quality measurements to assess the spatial variability of concentrations in urban environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Poppel, Martine; Peters, Jan; Bleux, Nico

    2013-01-01

    A case study is presented to illustrate a methodology for mobile monitoring in urban environments. A dataset of UFP, PM 2.5 and BC concentrations was collected. We showed that repeated mobile measurements could give insight in spatial variability of pollutants at different micro-environments in a city. Streets of contrasting traffic intensity showed increased concentrations by a factor 2–3 for UFP and BC and by 2.5 . The first quartile (P25) of the mobile measurements at an urban background zone seems to be good estimate of the urban background concentration. The local component of the pollutant concentrations was determined by background correction. The use of background correction reduced the number of runs needed to obtain representative results. The results presented, are a first attempt to establish a methodology for setup and data processing of mobile air quality measurements to assess the spatial variability of concentrations in urban environments. -- Highlights: ► Mobile measurements are used to assess the variability of air pollutants in urban environments. ► PM 2.5 , BC and UFP concentrations are presented for zones with different traffic characteristics. ► A methodology for background correction based on the mobile measurements is presented. ► The background concentration is estimated as the 25th percentile of the urban background data. ► The minimum numbers of runs for a representative estimate is reduced after background correction. -- This paper shows that the spatial variability of air pollutants in an urban environment can be assessed by a mobile monitoring methodology including background correction

  9. Quantifying Averted Disability-Adjusted Life Years as a Performance Indicator for Water Quality Interventions: A Review of Current Methodologies and Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darcy M. Anderson

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable access to safe drinking water protects against infectious disease and promotes overall health. Despite considerable progress toward increasing water access, safe water quality and reliable service delivery remain a challenge. Traditional financing strategies pay implementers based on inputs and activities, with minimal incentives for water quality monitoring and sustained service operation. Pay-for-performance offers an alternative financing strategy that delivers all or a portion of payment based on performance indicators of desired outputs or outcomes. A pay-for-performance approach in the water sector could quantify and incentivize health impact. Averted disability-adjusted life years (ADALYs have been used as a performance indicator to measure the burden of disease averted due to environmental health interventions. Water-related disease burden can be measured for application as an ADALYs performance indicator following either comparative risk assessment or quantitative microbial risk assessment. Comparative risk assessment models disease burden using water source type as a proxy indicator of microbial water quality, while quantitative microbial risk assessment models disease burden using concentrations of indicator pathogens. This paper compares these risk assessment methodologies, and summarizes the limitations of applying these approaches toward quantifying ADALYs as a performance indicator for water quality interventions.

  10. [A methodological approach to assessing the quality of medical health information on its way from science to the mass media].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serong, Julia; Anhäuser, Marcus; Wormer, Holger

    2015-01-01

    A current research project deals with the question of how the quality of medical health information changes on its way from the academic journal via press releases to the news media. In an exploratory study a sample of 30 news items has been selected stage-by-stage from an adjusted total sample of 1,695 journalistic news items on medical research in 2013. Using a multidimensional set of criteria the news items as well as the corresponding academic articles, abstracts and press releases are examined by science journalists and medical experts. Together with a content analysis of the expert assessments, it will be verified to what extent established quality standards for medical journalism can be applied to medical health communication and public relations or even to studies and abstracts as well. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier GmbH.

  11. METHODOLOGICAL BACKGROUND OF EXPERT ESTIMATION OF INITIAL DATA COMPLETENESS AND QUALITY ACCORDING TO THE CERTIFIED INFORMATION SECURITY SYSTEM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. K. Fisenko

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem of information security systems certification is analyzed and the tasks of initial data analysis are carried out. The objectives, indices and decision making criteria, as well as the challenges to be addressed are formulated. It is shown that, in order to improve quality, reduce time and cost of preparation for certification, it is reasonable to use software system for automatization of the process of initial data analysis, presented by the owner of the information system.

  12. Can green roof act as a sink for contaminants? A methodological study to evaluate runoff quality from green roofs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayaraghavan, K; Joshi, Umid Man

    2014-11-01

    The present study examines whether green roofs act as a sink or source of contaminants based on various physico-chemical parameters (pH, conductivity and total dissolved solids) and metals (Na, K, Ca, Mg, Al, Fe, Cr, Cu, Ni, Zn, Cd and Pb). The performance of green roof substrate prepared using perlite, vermiculite, sand, crushed brick, and coco-peat, was compared with local garden soil based on improvement of runoff quality. Portulaca grandiflora was used as green roof vegetation. Four different green roof configurations, with vegetated and non-vegetated systems, were examined for several artificial rain events (un-spiked and metal-spiked). In general, the vegetated green roof assemblies generated better-quality runoff with less conductivity and total metal ion concentration compared to un-vegetated assemblies. Of the different green roof configurations examined, P. grandiflora planted on green roof substrate acted as sink for various metals and showed the potential to generate better runoff. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Creating a Methodology for Coordinating High-resolution Air Quality Improvement Map and Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Strategies in Pittsburgh City

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, J.; Donahue, N. M.; Klima, K.; Blackhurst, M.

    2016-12-01

    In order to tradeoff global impacts of greenhouse gases with highly local impacts of conventional air pollution, researchers require a method to compare global and regional impacts. Unfortunately, we are not aware of a method that allows these to be compared, "apples-to-apples". In this research we propose a three-step model to compare possible city-wide actions to reduce greenhouse gases and conventional air pollutants. We focus on Pittsburgh, PA, a city with consistently poor air quality that is interested in reducing both greenhouse gases and conventional air pollutants. First, we use the 2013 Pittsburgh Greenhouse Gas Inventory to update the Blackhurst et al. model and conduct a greenhouse gas abatement potentials and implementation costs of proposed greenhouse gas reduction efforts. Second, we use field tests for PM2.5, NOx, SOx, organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) data to inform a Land-use Regression Model for local air pollution at a 100m x 100m spatial level, which combined with a social cost of air pollution model (EASIUR) allows us to calculate economic social damages. Third, we combine these two models into a three-dimensional greenhouse gas cost abatement curve to understand the implementation costs and social benefits in terms of air quality improvement and greenhouse gas abatement for each potential intervention. We anticipated such results could provide policy-maker insights in green city development.

  14. Quality-productivity decision making when turning of Inconel 718 aerospace alloy: A response surface methodology approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamid Tebassi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Inconel 718 is among difficult to machine materials because of its abrasiveness and high strength even at high temperature. This alloy is mainly used in aircraft and aerospace industries. Therefore, it is very important to reveal and evaluate cutting tools behavior during machining of this kind of alloy. The experimental study presented in this research work has been carried out in order to elucidate surface roughness and productivity mathematical models during turning of Inconel 718 superalloy (35 HRC with SiC Whisker ceramic tool at various cutting parameters (depth of cut, feed rate, cutting speed and radius nose. A small central composite design (SCCD including 16 basics runs replicated three times (48 runs, was adopted and graphically evaluated using Fraction of design space (FDS graph, completed by a statistical analysis of variance (ANOVA. Mathematical models for surface roughness and productivity were developed and normality was improved using the Box-Cox transformation. Results show that surface roughness criterion Ra was mainly influenced by cutting speed, radius nose and feed rate, and that the depth of cut had major effect on productivity. Finally, ranges of optimized cutting conditions were proposed for serial industrial production. Industrial benefit was illustrated in terms of high surface quality accompanied with high productivity. Indeed, results show that the use of optimal cutting condition had an industrial benefit to 46.9 % as an improvement in surface quality Ra and 160.54 % in productivity MRR.

  15. An algorithm to assess methodological quality of nutrition and mortality cross-sectional surveys: development and application to surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prudhon, Claudine; de Radiguès, Xavier; Dale, Nancy; Checchi, Francesco

    2011-11-09

    Nutrition and mortality surveys are the main tools whereby evidence on the health status of populations affected by disasters and armed conflict is quantified and monitored over time. Several reviews have consistently revealed a lack of rigor in many surveys. We describe an algorithm for analyzing nutritional and mortality survey reports to identify a comprehensive range of errors that may result in sampling, response, or measurement biases and score quality. We apply the algorithm to surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan. We developed an algorithm based on internationally agreed upon methods and best practices. Penalties are attributed for a list of errors, and an overall score is built from the summation of penalties accrued by the survey as a whole. To test the algorithm reproducibility, it was independently applied by three raters on 30 randomly selected survey reports. The algorithm was further applied to more than 100 surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan. The Intra Class Correlation coefficient was 0.79 for mortality surveys and 0.78 for nutrition surveys. The overall median quality score and range of about 100 surveys conducted in Darfur were 0.60 (0.12-0.93) and 0.675 (0.23-0.86) for mortality and nutrition surveys, respectively. They varied between the organizations conducting the surveys, with no major trend over time. Our study suggests that it is possible to systematically assess quality of surveys and reveals considerable problems with the quality of nutritional and particularly mortality surveys conducted in the Darfur crisis.

  16. A new time-series methodology for estimating relationships between elderly frailty, remaining life expectancy, and ambient air quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Christian J; Lipfert, Frederick W

    2012-01-01

    Many publications estimate short-term air pollution-mortality risks, but few estimate the associated changes in life-expectancies. We present a new methodology for analyzing time series of health effects, in which prior frailty is assumed to precede short-term elderly nontraumatic mortality. The model is based on a subpopulation of frail individuals whose entries and exits (deaths) are functions of daily and lagged environmental conditions: ambient temperature/season, airborne particles, and ozone. This frail susceptible population is unknown; its fluctuations cannot be observed but are estimated using maximum-likelihood methods with the Kalman filter. We used an existing 14-y set of daily data to illustrate the model and then tested the assumption of prior frailty with a new generalized model that estimates the portion of the daily death count allocated to nonfrail individuals. In this demonstration dataset, new entries into the high-risk pool are associated with lower ambient temperatures and higher concentrations of particulate matter and ozone. Accounting for these effects on antecedent frailty reduces this at-risk population, yielding frail life expectancies of 5-7 days. Associations between environmental factors and entries to the at-risk pool are about twice as strong as for mortality. Nonfrail elderly deaths are seen to make only small contributions. This new model predicts a small short-lived frail population-at-risk that is stable over a wide range of environmental conditions. The predicted effects of pollution on new entries and deaths are robust and consistent with conventional morbidity/mortality times-series studies. We recommend model verification using other suitable datasets.

  17. A systematic and transparent approach for assessing the methodological quality of intervention effectiveness research: the Study Design and Implementation Assessment Device (Study DIAD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentine, Jeffrey C; Cooper, Harris

    2008-06-01

    Assessments of studies meant to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions, programs, and policies can serve an important role in the interpretation of research results. However, evidence suggests that available quality assessment tools have poor measurement characteristics and can lead to opposing conclusions when applied to the same body of studies. These tools tend to (a) be insufficiently operational, (b) rely on arbitrary post-hoc decision rules, and (c) result in a single number to represent a multidimensional construct. In response to these limitations, a multilevel and hierarchical instrument was developed in consultation with a wide range of methodological and statistical experts. The instrument focuses on the operational details of studies and results in a profile of scores instead of a single score to represent study quality. A pilot test suggested that satisfactory between-judge agreement can be obtained using well-trained raters working in naturalistic conditions. Limitations of the instrument are discussed, but these are inherent in making decisions about study quality given incomplete reporting and in the absence of strong, contextually based information about the effects of design flaws on study outcomes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. SU-E-T-43: A Methodology for Quality Control of IMPT Treatment Plan Based On VMAT Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, S [UT MD Anderson Cancer Center (United States); Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital (China); Yang, Y [UT MD Anderson Cancer Center (United States); Tianjin First Center Hospital (China); Liao, L; Wang, X; Li, H; Zhu, X; Zhang, X [UT MD Anderson Cancer Center (United States)

    2015-06-15

    Purpose: IMPT plan design is highly dependent on planner’s experiences. VMAT plan design is relatively mature and can even be automated. The quality of IMPT plan designed by in-experienced planner could be inferior to that of VMAT plan designed by experienced planner or automatic planning software. Here we introduce a method for designing IMPT plan based on VMAT plan to ensure the IMPT plan be superior to IMRT/VMAT plan for majority clinical scenario. Methods: To design a new IMPT plan, a VMAT plan is first generated either by experienced planner or by in-house developed automatic planning system. An in-house developed tool is used to generate the dose volume constrains for the IMPT plan as plan template to Eclipse TPS. The beam angles for IMPT plan are selected based on the preferred angles in the VMAT plan. IMPT plan is designed by importing the plan objectives generated from VMAT plan. Majority thoracic IMPT plans are designed using this plan approach in our center. In this work, a thoracic IMPT plan under RTOG 1308 protocol is selected to demonstrate the effectiveness and efficiency of this approach. The dosimetric indices of IMPT are compared with VMAT plan. Results: The PTV D95, lung V20, MLD, mean heart dose, esophagus D1, cord D1 are 70Gy, 31%, 17.8Gy, 25.5Gy, 73Gy, 45Gy for IMPT plan and 65.3Gy, 34%, 21.6Gy, 35Gy, 74Gy, 48Gy for VMAT plan. For majority cases, the high dose region of the normal tissue which is in proximity of PTV is comparable between IMPT and VMAT plan. The low dose region of the IMPT plan is significantly better than VMAT plan. Conclusion: Using the knowledge gained in VMAT plan design can help efficiently and effectively design high quality IMPT plan. The quality of IMPT plan can be controlled to ensure the superiority of IMPT plan compared to VMAT/IMRT plan.

  19. SU-E-T-43: A Methodology for Quality Control of IMPT Treatment Plan Based On VMAT Plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiang, S; Yang, Y; Liao, L; Wang, X; Li, H; Zhu, X; Zhang, X

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: IMPT plan design is highly dependent on planner’s experiences. VMAT plan design is relatively mature and can even be automated. The quality of IMPT plan designed by in-experienced planner could be inferior to that of VMAT plan designed by experienced planner or automatic planning software. Here we introduce a method for designing IMPT plan based on VMAT plan to ensure the IMPT plan be superior to IMRT/VMAT plan for majority clinical scenario. Methods: To design a new IMPT plan, a VMAT plan is first generated either by experienced planner or by in-house developed automatic planning system. An in-house developed tool is used to generate the dose volume constrains for the IMPT plan as plan template to Eclipse TPS. The beam angles for IMPT plan are selected based on the preferred angles in the VMAT plan. IMPT plan is designed by importing the plan objectives generated from VMAT plan. Majority thoracic IMPT plans are designed using this plan approach in our center. In this work, a thoracic IMPT plan under RTOG 1308 protocol is selected to demonstrate the effectiveness and efficiency of this approach. The dosimetric indices of IMPT are compared with VMAT plan. Results: The PTV D95, lung V20, MLD, mean heart dose, esophagus D1, cord D1 are 70Gy, 31%, 17.8Gy, 25.5Gy, 73Gy, 45Gy for IMPT plan and 65.3Gy, 34%, 21.6Gy, 35Gy, 74Gy, 48Gy for VMAT plan. For majority cases, the high dose region of the normal tissue which is in proximity of PTV is comparable between IMPT and VMAT plan. The low dose region of the IMPT plan is significantly better than VMAT plan. Conclusion: Using the knowledge gained in VMAT plan design can help efficiently and effectively design high quality IMPT plan. The quality of IMPT plan can be controlled to ensure the superiority of IMPT plan compared to VMAT/IMRT plan

  20. Consequences of using different soil texture determination methodologies for soil physical quality and unsaturated zone time lag estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenton, O; Vero, S; Ibrahim, T G; Murphy, P N C; Sherriff, S C; Ó hUallacháin, D

    2015-11-01

    Elucidation of when the loss of pollutants, below the rooting zone in agricultural landscapes, affects water quality is important when assessing the efficacy of mitigation measures. Investigation of this inherent time lag (t(T)) is divided into unsaturated (t(u)) and saturated (t(s)) components. The duration of these components relative to each other differs depending on soil characteristics and the landscape position. The present field study focuses on tu estimation in a scenario where the saturated zone is likely to constitute a higher proportion of t(T). In such instances, or where only initial breakthrough (IBT) or centre of mass (COM) is of interest, utilisation of site and depth specific "simple" textural class or actual sand-silt-clay percentages to generate soil water characteristic curves with associated soil hydraulic parameters is acceptable. With the same data it is also possible to estimate a soil physical quality (S) parameter for each soil layer which can be used to infer many other physical, chemical and biological quality indicators. In this study, hand texturing in the field was used to determine textural classes of a soil profile. Laboratory methods, including hydrometer, pipette and laser diffraction methods were used to determine actual sand-silt-clay percentages of sections of the same soil profile. Results showed that in terms of S, hand texturing resulted in a lower index value (inferring a degraded soil) than that of pipette, hydrometer and laser equivalents. There was no difference between S index values determined using the pipette, hydrometer and laser diffraction methods. The difference between the three laboratory methods on both the IBT and COM stages of t(u) were negligible, and in this instance were unlikely to affect either groundwater monitoring decisions, or to be of consequence from a policy perspective. When t(u) estimates are made over the full depth of the vadose zone, which may extend to several metres, errors resulting from

  1. Consequences of using different soil texture determination methodologies for soil physical quality and unsaturated zone time lag estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenton, O.; Vero, S.; Ibrahim, T. G.; Murphy, P. N. C.; Sherriff, S. C.; Ó hUallacháin, D.

    2015-11-01

    Elucidation of when the loss of pollutants, below the rooting zone in agricultural landscapes, affects water quality is important when assessing the efficacy of mitigation measures. Investigation of this inherent time lag (tT) is divided into unsaturated (tu) and saturated (ts) components. The duration of these components relative to each other differs depending on soil characteristics and the landscape position. The present field study focuses on tu estimation in a scenario where the saturated zone is likely to constitute a higher proportion of tT. In such instances, or where only initial breakthrough (IBT) or centre of mass (COM) is of interest, utilisation of site and depth specific "simple" textural class or actual sand-silt-clay percentages to generate soil water characteristic curves with associated soil hydraulic parameters is acceptable. With the same data it is also possible to estimate a soil physical quality (S) parameter for each soil layer which can be used to infer many other physical, chemical and biological quality indicators. In this study, hand texturing in the field was used to determine textural classes of a soil profile. Laboratory methods, including hydrometer, pipette and laser diffraction methods were used to determine actual sand-silt-clay percentages of sections of the same soil profile. Results showed that in terms of S, hand texturing resulted in a lower index value (inferring a degraded soil) than that of pipette, hydrometer and laser equivalents. There was no difference between S index values determined using the pipette, hydrometer and laser diffraction methods. The difference between the three laboratory methods on both the IBT and COM stages of tu were negligible, and in this instance were unlikely to affect either groundwater monitoring decisions, or to be of consequence from a policy perspective. When tu estimates are made over the full depth of the vadose zone, which may extend to several metres, errors resulting from the use of

  2. Study of methodologies for quality control of 99Mo used in 99Mo/99mTc generators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Said, Daphne de Souza

    2016-01-01

    99m Tc is the most used radionuclide in nuclear medicine. In Brazil, the 99 Mo/ 99m Tc generators are exclusively produced by Radiopharmacy Center at IPEN-CNEN/ SP, by importing 99 Mo from different suppliers. 99 Mo (t 1/2 = 66 h) is a fission product of 235 U and it can have radionuclidic impurities that are prejudicial for human health. For safe use of generators, it is necessary to perform the evaluation of 99 Mo by quality control tests in order to assess if 99 Mo complies with the specifications. The European Pharmacopoeia (EP) presents a monograph for evaluation of the quality of the [ 99 Mo] solution as sodium molybdate,that is used as raw material for 99 Mo/ 99m Tc generators production, including specification parameters (identification, radiochemical purity and radionuclidic purity), analysis methods and limits. However, it has been observed difficulties on the execution and implementation of these methods by the generators producers, with a few literature about this subject, probably due to complexity of the proposed methods. In this work, many quality control parameters of 99 Mo described in the EP monograph were evaluated. Separation methods for 99M o from its radionuclidic impurities by solid phase extraction (SPE) and TLC were studied. After SPE separation, the quantification of metals by ICP-OES to evaluate the percentage of retention of Mo and the percentage of recovery of Ru, Te and Sr using different types of cartridges were proposed, replacing radiotracers use. It was observed that the specific type of SPE cartridge recommended by the EP for separation of 99 Mo presented low recoveries for Ru, compared to other available anion exchange SPE cartridges. 99 Mo samples from different worldwide suppliers were analyzed. It was observed that quantification of 103 Ru in 99 Mo samples with decay time higher than 4 weeks is possible. An alternative method for separation of 131 I from 99 Mo showed promising results by TLC. The quantification of beta and

  3. “The 3/3 Strategy”: A Successful Multifaceted Hospital Wide Hand Hygiene Intervention Based on WHO and Continuous Quality Improvement Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mestre, Gabriel; Berbel, Cristina; Tortajada, Purificación; Alarcia, Margarita; Coca, Roser; Gallemi, Gema; Garcia, Irene; Fernández, Mari Mar; Aguilar, Mari Carmen; Martínez, José Antonio; Rodríguez-Baño, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Background Only multifaceted hospital wide interventions have been successful in achieving sustained improvements in hand hygiene (HH) compliance. Methodology/Principal Findings Pre-post intervention study of HH performance at baseline (October 2007– December 2009) and during intervention, which included two phases. Phase 1 (2010) included multimodal WHO approach. Phase 2 (2011) added Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) tools and was based on: a) Increase of alcohol hand rub (AHR) solution placement (from 0.57 dispensers/bed to 1.56); b) Increase in frequency of audits (three days every three weeks: “3/3 strategy”); c) Implementation of a standardized register form of HH corrective actions; d) Statistical Process Control (SPC) as time series analysis methodology through appropriate control charts. During the intervention period we performed 819 scheduled direct observation audits which provided data from 11,714 HH opportunities. The most remarkable findings were: a) significant improvements in HH compliance with respect to baseline (25% mean increase); b) sustained high level (82%) of HH compliance during intervention; c) significant increase in AHRs consumption over time; c) significant decrease in the rate of healthcare-acquired MRSA; d) small but significant improvements in HH compliance when comparing phase 2 to phase 1 [79.5% (95% CI: 78.2–80.7) vs 84.6% (95% CI:83.8–85.4), phygiene day”; and “negative”:73.7% as lowest HH compliance coinciding with a statutory lay-off proceeding). Conclusions/Significance CQI tools may be a key addition to WHO strategy to maintain a good HH performance over time. In addition, SPC has shown to be a powerful methodology to detect special causes in HH performance (positive and negative) and to help establishing adequate feedback to healthcare workers. PMID:23110061

  4. Update on the Methodological Quality of Research Published in The American Journal of Sports Medicine: Comparing 2011-2013 to 10 and 20 Years Prior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brophy, Robert H; Kluck, Dylan; Marx, Robert G

    2016-05-01

    In recent years, the number of articles in The American Journal of Sports Medicine (AJSM) has risen dramatically, with an increasing emphasis on evidence-based medicine in orthopaedics and sports medicine. Despite the increase in the number of articles published in AJSM over the past decade, the methodological quality of articles in 2011-2013 has improved relative to those in 2001-2003 and 1991-1993. Meta-analysis. All articles published in AJSM during 2011-2013 were reviewed and classified by study design. For each article, the use of pertinent methodologies, such as prospective data collection, randomization, control groups, and blinding, was recorded. The frequency of each article type and the use of evidence-based techniques were compared relative to 1991-1993 and 2001-2003 by use of Pearson χ(2) testing. The number of research articles published in AJSM more than doubled from 402 in 1991-1993 and 423 in 2001-2003 to 953 in 2011-2013. Case reports decreased from 15.2% to 10.6% to 2.1% of articles published over the study period (P < .001). Cadaveric/human studies and meta-analysis/literature review studies increased from 5.7% to 7.1% to 12.4% (P < .001) and from 0.2% to 0.9% to 2.3% (P = .01), respectively. Randomized, prospective clinical trials increased from 2.7% to 5.9% to 7.4% (P = .007). Fewer studies used retrospective compared with prospective data collection (P < .001). More studies tested an explicit hypothesis (P < .001) and used controls (P < .001), randomization (P < .001), and blinding of those assessing outcomes (P < .001). Multi-investigator trials increased (P < .001), as did the proportion of articles citing a funding source (P < .001). Despite a dramatic increase in the number of published articles, the research published in AJSM shifted toward more prospective, randomized, controlled, and blinded designs during 2011-2013 compared with 2001-2003 and 1991-1993, demonstrating a continued improvement in methodological quality. © 2015 The

  5. Archetype modeling methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moner, David; Maldonado, José Alberto; Robles, Montserrat

    2018-03-01

    Clinical Information Models (CIMs) expressed as archetypes play an essential role in the design and development of current Electronic Health Record (EHR) information structures. Although there exist many experiences about using archetypes in the literature, a comprehensive and formal methodology for archetype modeling does not exist. Having a modeling methodology is essential to develop quality archetypes, in order to guide the development of EHR systems and to allow the semantic interoperability of health data. In this work, an archetype modeling methodology is proposed. This paper describes its phases, the inputs and outputs of each phase, and the involved participants and tools. It also includes the description of the possible strategies to organize the modeling process. The proposed methodology is inspired by existing best practices of CIMs, software and ontology development. The methodology has been applied and evaluated in regional and national EHR projects. The application of the methodology provided useful feedback and improvements, and confirmed its advantages. The conclusion of this work is that having a formal methodology for archetype development facilitates the definition and adoption of interoperable archetypes, improves their quality, and facilitates their reuse among different information systems and EHR projects. Moreover, the proposed methodology can be also a reference for CIMs development using any other formalism. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Assessing the service quality in Software-as-a-Service from the customers’ perspective: a methodological approach and case of use

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Luís Policani Freitas

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Despite the advances in the evaluation of the quality of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS, new studies seem to be necessary, since the existing criticisms concerning the SERVQUAL scale and the lack of studies concerning the use of SERVPERF for this purpose. This work aims to fulfil this gap by proposing a methodological approach to assess the SaaS service quality by measuring SaaS customers’ satisfaction. Factor analysis is used to summarize the information contained in the original items into a smaller set of new dimensions and Quartile analysis is suggested to determine the most critical items. By conducting a study, the factors that most influence customer’s satisfaction are customer service, customer assistance and the reliability of SaaS. Most of the critical items are associated with the transparency and accuracy in correcting errors, the company's interest in solving customer problems, SaaS application's ability to meet business requirements, implemented updates and regularity of service performance.

  7. The Theoretical, Methodological, and Practical Background for Looking at International Students' Learning Styles, Backgrounds, and Quality Perceptions with Regard to ASB's Three English-Language M.Sc. Programs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skaates, Maria Anne

    This paper looking at the methodological background for a questionnaire study of student perceptions with regard to own learning styles and backgrounds as well as the quality of education in Aarhus School of Business' 3 English-language M.Sc. programs (FIB, EU, and BPM). Theories and models about...... the internationalization of business schools, service quality, and student learning styles are discussed in the paper, as is the statistic methodology for treating the questionnaire responses of the respondents.......This paper looking at the methodological background for a questionnaire study of student perceptions with regard to own learning styles and backgrounds as well as the quality of education in Aarhus School of Business' 3 English-language M.Sc. programs (FIB, EU, and BPM). Theories and models about...

  8. An algorithm to assess methodological quality of nutrition and mortality cross-sectional surveys: development and application to surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prudhon Claudine

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nutrition and mortality surveys are the main tools whereby evidence on the health status of populations affected by disasters and armed conflict is quantified and monitored over time. Several reviews have consistently revealed a lack of rigor in many surveys. We describe an algorithm for analyzing nutritional and mortality survey reports to identify a comprehensive range of errors that may result in sampling, response, or measurement biases and score quality. We apply the algorithm to surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan. Methods We developed an algorithm based on internationally agreed upon methods and best practices. Penalties are attributed for a list of errors, and an overall score is built from the summation of penalties accrued by the survey as a whole. To test the algorithm reproducibility, it was independently applied by three raters on 30 randomly selected survey reports. The algorithm was further applied to more than 100 surveys conducted in Darfur, Sudan. Results The Intra Class Correlation coefficient was 0.79 for mortality surveys and 0.78 for nutrition surveys. The overall median quality score and range of about 100 surveys conducted in Darfur were 0.60 (0.12-0.93 and 0.675 (0.23-0.86 for mortality and nutrition surveys, respectively. They varied between the organizations conducting the surveys, with no major trend over time. Conclusion Our study suggests that it is possible to systematically assess quality of surveys and reveals considerable problems with the quality of nutritional and particularly mortality surveys conducted in the Darfur crisis.

  9. Time-varying BRDFs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Bo; Sunkavalli, Kalyan; Ramamoorthi, Ravi; Belhumeur, Peter N; Nayar, Shree K

    2007-01-01

    The properties of virtually all real-world materials change with time, causing their bidirectional reflectance distribution functions (BRDFs) to be time varying. However, none of the existing BRDF models and databases take time variation into consideration; they represent the appearance of a material at a single time instance. In this paper, we address the acquisition, analysis, modeling, and rendering of a wide range of time-varying BRDFs (TVBRDFs). We have developed an acquisition system that is capable of sampling a material's BRDF at multiple time instances, with each time sample acquired within 36 sec. We have used this acquisition system to measure the BRDFs of a wide range of time-varying phenomena, which include the drying of various types of paints (watercolor, spray, and oil), the drying of wet rough surfaces (cement, plaster, and fabrics), the accumulation of dusts (household and joint compound) on surfaces, and the melting of materials (chocolate). Analytic BRDF functions are fit to these measurements and the model parameters' variations with time are analyzed. Each category exhibits interesting and sometimes nonintuitive parameter trends. These parameter trends are then used to develop analytic TVBRDF models. The analytic TVBRDF models enable us to apply effects such as paint drying and dust accumulation to arbitrary surfaces and novel materials.

  10. Comprehensive Auditing in Nuclear Medicine Through the International Atomic Energy Agency Quality Management Audits in Nuclear Medicine (QUANUM) Program. Part 1: the QUANUM Program and Methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dondi, Maurizio; Torres, Leonel; Marengo, Mario; Massardo, Teresa; Mishani, Eyal; Van Zyl Ellmann, Annare; Solanki, Kishor; Bischof Delaloye, Angelika; Lobato, Enrique Estrada; Miller, Rodolfo Nunez; Paez, Diana; Pascual, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    An effective management system that integrates quality management is essential for a modern nuclear medicine practice. The Nuclear Medicine and Diagnostic Imaging Section of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has the mission of supporting nuclear medicine practice in low- and middle-income countries and of helping them introduce it in their health-care system, when not yet present. The experience gathered over several years has shown diversified levels of development and varying degrees of quality of practice, among others because of limited professional networking and limited or no opportunities for exchange of experiences. Those findings triggered the development of a program named Quality Management Audits in Nuclear Medicine (QUANUM), aimed at improving the standards of NM practice in low- and middle-income countries to internationally accepted standards through the introduction of a culture of quality management and systematic auditing programs. QUANUM takes into account the diversity of nuclear medicine services around the world and multidisciplinary contributions to the practice. Those contributions include clinical, technical, radiopharmaceutical, and medical physics procedures. Aspects of radiation safety and patient protection are also integral to the process. Such an approach ensures consistency in providing safe services of superior quality to patients. The level of conformance is assessed using standards based on publications of the IAEA and the International Commission on Radiological Protection, and guidelines from scientific societies such as Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) and European Association of Nuclear Medicine (EANM). Following QUANUM guidelines and by means of a specific assessment tool developed by the IAEA, auditors, both internal and external, will be able to evaluate the level of conformance. Nonconformances will then be prioritized and recommendations will be provided during an exit briefing. The

  11. A multi-methodological approach to study the temporal and spatial distribution of air quality related to road transport emissions in Madrid, Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez, Pedro; Miranda, Regina

    2013-04-01

    emission inventory, together with the mobile source's parameters and the disaggregated transport activity data. The paper will also identify emission and concentration differences and gradients of certain magnitude/factor (e.g. comparison between estimated ATPs hourly concentrations in Madrid City Center and in the peripheries). Furthermore, because of the higher contribution of road mobile sources to GHGs and ATPs emissions in Madrid, small gradients between urban highways and residential areas will be expected. Second, the paper objectives are to develop valid methods and approaches to measure air quality and to develop valid road transport emission inventories to assess correlations between external costs, epidemiology and emissions in order to reveal how traffic pollution affects people exposure to key contaminants and disease development, and identify susceptible emission scenarios and health impacts. We have conducted general emission inventory studies providing preliminary evidence of regional road transport air pollution impacts on external cost growth and disease development. Third, we also aim to demonstrate short and long-term impacts of road transport emissions on external costs development using innovative multi-methodological methods interfaced with environmental chemistry and meteorology following meteorological and chemical fields with contrasting high/low traffic emissions in several linked components involving: air pollutant assessment using local measurements, height of the boundary layer, meteorological environment interactions on external costs and epidemiology, mapping of Madrid (identifying gradients of emissions), integrative causal modeling using statistical models, and trend and scenario analyses on external costs and impacts on human health. Meteorological and chemical fields will be obtained from local records collected by surface meteorological and air quality stations. These two sets of fields define the horizontal and vertical profiles of

  12. The COSMIN checklist for assessing the methodological quality of studies on measurement properties of health status measurement instruments: an international Delphi study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mokkink, Lidwine B; Terwee, Caroline B; Patrick, Donald L; Alonso, Jordi; Stratford, Paul W; Knol, Dirk L; Bouter, Lex M; de Vet, Henrica C W

    2010-05-01

    Aim of the COSMIN study (COnsensus-based Standards for the selection of health status Measurement INstruments) was to develop a consensus-based checklist to evaluate the methodological quality of studies on measurement properties. We present the COSMIN checklist and the agreement of the panel on the items of the checklist. A four-round Delphi study was performed with international experts (psychologists, epidemiologists, statisticians and clinicians). Of the 91 invited experts, 57 agreed to participate (63%). Panel members were asked to rate their (dis)agreement with each proposal on a five-point scale. Consensus was considered to be reached when at least 67% of the panel members indicated 'agree' or 'strongly agree'. Consensus was reached on the inclusion of the following measurement properties: internal consistency, reliability, measurement error, content validity (including face validity), construct validity (including structural validity, hypotheses testing and cross-cultural validity), criterion validity, responsiveness, and interpretability. The latter was not considered a measurement property. The panel also reached consensus on how these properties should be assessed. The resulting COSMIN checklist could be useful when selecting a measurement instrument, peer-reviewing a manuscript, designing or reporting a study on measurement properties, or for educational purposes.

  13. Metodologias de controle de qualidade de análises granulométricas do solo Methodologies for quality control of soil particle size analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vilson Antonio Klein

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available A qualidade da análise granulométrica é imprescindível para a adequada classificação textural dos solos e enquadramento no Zoneamento Agroclimático. O objetivo deste trabalho foi avaliar metodologias de controle de qualidade das análises granulométricas. Foram coletadas amostras de solos com diferentes texturas, as quais foram analisadas por cinco laboratórios. O controle da qualidade foi realizado utilizando duas metodologias, uma proposta pelo Instituto Agronômico de Campinas (IAC e a outra pela Rede Oficial de Laboratórios de Análise de Solo e de Tecido Vegetal dos Estados do RS e SC (ROLAS. Verificou-se maior número de inconformidades para as frações argila e silte, independentemente do método, sendo que o método da ROLAS apresentou maior número de inconformidades (76% das amostras, principalmente para amostras com teores mais elevados dessas frações. A metodologia da ROLAS com utilização da mediana é mais rigorosa no controle da qualidade das análises.The quality of particle size analysis is essential for correct soil textural classification and defining the Brazilian Agroclimatic Zoning. The objectives were to evaluate methods of particle size analysis and develop a spreadsheet for use in quality control analyzes. We collected 50 soil samples with different particle size distribution, in RS and SC states of Brazil, which were analyzed by five laboratories in the two states that perform the soil particle size analysis using two methods: one proposed by the Campinas Agronomic Institute (IAC and the other by the Network of Soil and Plant Tissue Analysis Laboratories of the states of RS and SC (ROLAS. A greater number of disparities were observed for the clay and sand fractions regardless of the method. The ROLAS method had a higher number of mismatches (76% of samples, especially for samples with higher contents of those two fractions. The use of the median value in the ROLAS methodology is more rigorous in analysis

  14. Quality of phytopathometric variables generated from a ranking scale for the CABMV-passionfruit pathosystem = Qualidade de variáveis fitopatométricas geradas a partir de escala de notas para o patossistema CABMV – maracujazeiro ‘amarelo’

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Carlos Mota Porto

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The Cowpea aphid-borne mosaic virus (CABMV is one of the most important pathogenic agents in passionfruit culture, causing extensive loss throughout the national territory. Efficient quantification of disease symptoms is highly dependent on the methodology used, and is directly related to the quality of data generated for later manipulation and analysis. Thus, our objective was to evaluate different methods of using the data collected using a scale based on quality of the generated variables, using statistical parameters. Assumptions of additivity, homoscedasticity and normality of the errors in parametric analysis were tested. Experimental quality, for each phytopatometric variable (PV was tested for calculated F (Fc, coefficient of determination (R² and coefficient of variation (CV%. Four different PVs were generated through a ranking scale: AUDPC-III, AUDPC-GS, III and GS. All variables met the assumptions for analysis of variance, with AUDPC-III and III PVs having slightly higher values in terms of adherence to normality, and AUDPC-GS and GS PVs having slightly higher values in terms of significance for additivity and homoscedasticity. AUDPC-III and III had the highest calculated R² and F values, and the highest coefficients of variation. We recorded the inverse for AUDPC-GS and GS, with lower coefficients of variation and higher R² and F values. A lower correlation, though still significant, was observed between AUDPC-GS and AUDPC-III, while a higher correlation was recorded between III and GS. Overall the PVs III and AUDPC-III systems were the best for use in the analyzes of the studied pathosystem. = O Cowpea aphid-borne mosaic virus (CABMV, responsável pelo endurecimento dos frutos do maracujazeiro, é um dos mais importantes agentes patogênicos na passicultura, pois causa grandes perdas em todo território nacional. A eficiência na quantificação dos sintomas foliares da doença é altamente dependente da metodologia empregada

  15. Analysis of the penumbra enlargement in lung versus the Quality Index of photon beams: A methodology to check the dose calculation algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsiakalos, Miltiadis F.; Theodorou, Kiki; Kappas, Constantin; Zefkili, Sofia; Rosenwold, Jean-Claude

    2004-01-01

    It is well known that considerable underdosage can occur at the edges of a tumor inside the lung because of the degradation of penumbra due to lack of lateral electronic equilibrium. Although present even at smaller energies, this phenomenon is more pronounced for higher energies. Apart from Monte Carlo calculation, most of the existing Treatment Planning Systems (TPSs) cannot deal at all, or with acceptable accuracy, with this effect. A methodology has been developed for assessing the dose calculation algorithms in the lung region where lateral electronic disequilibrium exists, based on the Quality Index (QI) of the incident beam. A phantom, consisting of layers of polystyrene and lung material, has been irradiated using photon beams of 4, 6, 15, and 20 MV. The cross-plane profiles of each beam for 5x5, 10x10, and 25x10 fields have been measured at the middle of the phantom with the use of films. The penumbra (20%-80%) and fringe (50%-90%) enlargement was measured and the ratio of the widths for the lung to that of polystyrene was defined as the Correction Factor (CF). Monte Carlo calculations in the two phantoms have also been performed for energies of 6, 15, and 20 MV. Five commercial TPS's algorithms were tested for their ability to predict the penumbra and fringe enlargement. A linear relationship has been found between the QI of the beams and the CF of the penumbra and fringe enlargement for all the examined fields. Monte Carlo calculations agree very well (less than 1% difference) with the film measurements. The CF values range between 1.1 for 4 MV (QI 0.620) and 2.28 for 20 MV (QI 0.794). Three of the tested TPS's algorithms could not predict any enlargement at all for all energies and all fields and two of them could predict the penumbra enlargement to some extent. The proposed methodology can help any user or developer to check the accuracy of its algorithm for lung cases, based on a simple phantom geometry and the QI of the incident beam. This check is

  16. Complicating Methodological Transparency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridges-Rhoads, Sarah; Van Cleave, Jessica; Hughes, Hilary E.

    2016-01-01

    A historical indicator of the quality, validity, and rigor of qualitative research has been the documentation and disclosure of the behind-the-scenes work of the researcher. In this paper, we use what we call "methodological data" as a tool to complicate the possibility and desirability of such transparency. Specifically, we draw on our…

  17. Quality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burnett, N.; Jeffries, J.; Mach, J.; Robson, M.; Pajot, D.; Harrigan, J.; Lebsack, T.; Mullen, D.; Rat, F.; Theys, P.

    1993-01-01

    What is quality? How do you achieve it? How do you keep it once you have got it. The answer for industry at large is the three-step hierarchy of quality control, quality assurance and Total quality Management. An overview is given of the history of quality movement, illustrated with examples from Schlumberger operations, as well as the oil industry's approach to quality. An introduction of the Schlumberger's quality-associated ClientLink program is presented. 15 figs., 4 ills., 16 refs

  18. varying elastic parameters distributions

    KAUST Repository

    Moussawi, Ali

    2014-12-01

    The experimental identication of mechanical properties is crucial in mechanics for understanding material behavior and for the development of numerical models. Classical identi cation procedures employ standard shaped specimens, assume that the mechanical elds in the object are homogeneous, and recover global properties. Thus, multiple tests are required for full characterization of a heterogeneous object, leading to a time consuming and costly process. The development of non-contact, full- eld measurement techniques from which complex kinematic elds can be recorded has opened the door to a new way of thinking. From the identi cation point of view, suitable methods can be used to process these complex kinematic elds in order to recover multiple spatially varying parameters through one test or a few tests. The requirement is the development of identi cation techniques that can process these complex experimental data. This thesis introduces a novel identi cation technique called the constitutive compatibility method. The key idea is to de ne stresses as compatible with the observed kinematic eld through the chosen class of constitutive equation, making possible the uncoupling of the identi cation of stress from the identi cation of the material parameters. This uncoupling leads to parametrized solutions in cases where 5 the solution is non-unique (due to unknown traction boundary conditions) as demonstrated on 2D numerical examples. First the theory is outlined and the method is demonstrated in 2D applications. Second, the method is implemented within a domain decomposition framework in order to reduce the cost for processing very large problems. Finally, it is extended to 3D numerical examples. Promising results are shown for 2D and 3D problems.

  19. Variáveis psicológicas envolvidas na qualidade de vida de portadores de epilepsia Psychological variables involved in the quality of life of patients with epilepsy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Priscila Camile Barioni Salgado

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available O diagnóstico de epilepsia acarreta um rompimento na maneira como o indivíduo se percebe, na sua vida social e econômica e nos seus planos de futuro. Este estudo buscou avaliar variáveis psicológicas (percepção de controle de crises e características da doença na determinação da qualidade de vida (QV de pacientes adultos com diagnóstico de epilepsia há mais de dois anos. Foram avaliados 60 participantes, aleatoriamente selecionados no ambulatório de epilepsia do HC/Unicamp, com idade entre 18 e 70 anos (M = 37,05; DP = 11,25, através do Questionário de Qualidade de Vida 65 (QQV-65. As variáveis da doença não foram significativas, com exceção da freqüência de crises, que apareceu associada à piora na QV, entre crises controladas e crises com freqüência acima de 10 por mês (p = 0,021. A percepção do controle de crises apareceu significativamente associada à QV (p = 0,005. A interpretação subjetiva de crises controla a resposta de ajustamento à doença e do senso de bem-estar geral e explicam porque a QV é melhor nos participantes livres de crises.The epilepsy diagnostic breaks the way people used to perceive themselves, and tends to destroy their social and economical life, as well as their plans for the future. This study searched for the evaluation of psychological variables (perception of seizure control and the illness characteristics determining the quality of life (QoL in patients with the diagnostic of epilepsy for over two years. The sample consisted of 60 individuals with chronic epilepsy, aging 18 to 70 (M = 37.05; SD = 11.25, chosen at random from the outpatient clinic of epilepsy - University Hospital of Campinas /UNICAMP and evaluated by means of the Questionnaire of Quality of Life 65 (QQV-65. The illness characteristics were not statistically significant, except the seizures frequency, when associated to the impairment in QoL among controlled seizures and seizures with frequency higher than 10 per

  20. On methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cheesman, Robin; Faraone, Roque

    2002-01-01

    This is an English version of the methodology chapter in the authors' book "El caso Berríos: Estudio sobre información errónea, desinformación y manipulación de la opinión pública".......This is an English version of the methodology chapter in the authors' book "El caso Berríos: Estudio sobre información errónea, desinformación y manipulación de la opinión pública"....

  1. As good as it gets? A meta-analysis and systematic review of methodological quality of heart rate variability studies in functional somatic disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tak, L.M.; Riese, H.; de Bock, G.H.; Manoharan, A.; Kok, I.C.; Rosmalen, J.G.M.

    2009-01-01

    Autonomic nervous system (ANS) dysfunction is a potential mechanism connecting psychosocial stress to functional somatic disorders (FSD), such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome. We present the first meta-analysis and systematic review of methodological study

  2. Third version of vendor-specific model-based iterativereconstruction (Veo 3.0): evaluation of CT image quality in the abdomen using new noise reduction presets and varied slice optimization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Telesmanich, Morgan E; Jensen, Corey T; Enriquez, Jose L; Wagner-Bartak, Nicolaus A; Liu, Xinming; Le, Ott; Wei, Wei; Chandler, Adam G; Tamm, Eric P

    2017-08-01

    To qualitatively and quantitatively compare abdominal CT images reconstructed with a newversion of model-based iterative reconstruction (Veo 3.0; GE Healthcare Waukesha, WI) utilizing varied presetsof resolution preference, noise reduction and slice optimization. This retrospective study was approved by our Institutional Review Board and was Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliant. The raw datafrom 30 consecutive patients who had undergone CT abdomen scanning were used to reconstructfour clinical presets of 3.75mm axial images using Veo 3.0: 5% resolution preference (RP05n), 5%noise reduction (NR05) and 40% noise reduction (NR40) with new 3.75mm "sliceoptimization," as well as one set using RP05 with conventional 0.625mm "slice optimization" (RP05c). The images were reviewed by two independent readers in a blinded, randomized manner using a 5-point Likert scale as well as a 5-point comparative scale. Multiple two-dimensional circular regions of interest were defined for noise and contrast-to-noise ratio measurements. Line profiles were drawn across the 7 lp cm -1 bar pattern of the Catphan 600 phantom for evaluation of spatial resolution. The NR05 image set was ranked as the best series in overall image quality (mean difference inrank 0.48, 95% CI [0.081-0.88], p = 0.01) and with specific reference to liver evaluation (meandifference 0.46, 95% CI [0.030-0.89], p = 0.03), when compared with the secondbest series ineach category. RP05n was ranked as the best for bone evaluation. NR40 was ranked assignificantly inferior across all assessed categories. Although the NR05 and RP05c image setshad nearly the same contrast-to-noise ratio and spatial resolution, NR05 was generally preferred. Image noise and spatial resolution increased along a spectrum with RP05n the highest and NR40the lowest. Compared to RP05n, the average noise was 21.01% lower for NR05, 26.88%lower for RP05c and 50.86% lower for NR40. Veo 3.0 clinical presets allow for

  3. Methodological guidelines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Halsnaes, K.; Callaway, J.M.; Meyer, H.J.

    1999-01-01

    The guideline document establishes a general overview of the main components of climate change mitigation assessment. This includes an outline of key economic concepts, scenario structure, common assumptions, modelling tools and country study assumptions. The guidelines are supported by Handbook Reports that contain more detailed specifications of calculation standards, input assumptions and available tools. The major objectives of the project have been provided a methodology, an implementing framework and a reporting system which countries can follow in meeting their future reporting obligations under the FCCC and for GEF enabling activities. The project builds upon the methodology development and application in the UNEP National Abatement Coasting Studies (UNEP, 1994a). The various elements provide countries with a road map for conducting climate change mitigation studies and submitting national reports as required by the FCCC. (au) 121 refs

  4. Methodological guidelines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Halsnaes, K.; Callaway, J.M.; Meyer, H.J.

    1999-04-01

    The guideline document establishes a general overview of the main components of climate change mitigation assessment. This includes an outline of key economic concepts, scenario structure, common assumptions, modelling tools and country study assumptions. The guidelines are supported by Handbook Reports that contain more detailed specifications of calculation standards, input assumptions and available tools. The major objectives of the project have been provided a methodology, an implementing framework and a reporting system which countries can follow in meeting their future reporting obligations under the FCCC and for GEF enabling activities. The project builds upon the methodology development and application in the UNEP National Abatement Coasting Studies (UNEP, 1994a). The various elements provide countries with a road map for conducting climate change mitigation studies and submitting national reports as required by the FCCC. (au) 121 refs.

  5. Transparent Guideline Methodology Needed

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lidal, Ingeborg; Norén, Camilla; Mäkelä, Marjukka

    2013-01-01

    As part of learning at the Nordic Workshop of Evidence-based Medicine, we have read with interest the practice guidelines for central venous access, published in your Journal in 2012.1 We appraised the quality of this guideline using the checklist developed by The Evidence-Based Medicine Working ...... are based on best currently available evidence. Our concerns are in two main categories: the rigor of development, including methodology of searching, evaluating, and combining the evidence; and editorial independence, including funding and possible conflicts of interest....... Group.2 Similar criteria for guideline quality have been suggested elsewhere.3 Our conclusion was that this much needed guideline is currently unclear about several aspects of the methodology used in developing the recommendations. This means potential users cannot be certain that the recommendations...

  6. MIRD methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rojo, Ana M.; Gomez Parada, Ines

    2004-01-01

    The MIRD (Medical Internal Radiation Dose) system was established by the Society of Nuclear Medicine of USA in 1960 to assist the medical community in the estimation of the dose in organs and tissues due to the incorporation of radioactive materials. Since then, 'MIRD Dose Estimate Report' (from the 1 to 12) and 'Pamphlets', of great utility for the dose calculations, were published. The MIRD system was planned essentially for the calculation of doses received by the patients during nuclear medicine diagnostic procedures. The MIRD methodology for the absorbed doses calculations in different tissues is explained

  7. PSA methodology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Magne, L

    1997-12-31

    The purpose of this text is first to ask a certain number of questions on the methods related to PSAs. Notably we will explore the positioning of the French methodological approach - as applied in the EPS 1300{sup 1} and EPS 900{sup 2} PSAs - compared to other approaches (Part One). This reflection leads to more general reflection: what contents, for what PSA? This is why, in Part Two, we will try to offer a framework for definition of the criteria a PSA should satisfy to meet the clearly identified needs. Finally, Part Three will quickly summarize the questions approached in the first two parts, as an introduction to the debate. 15 refs.

  8. PSA methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Magne, L.

    1996-01-01

    The purpose of this text is first to ask a certain number of questions on the methods related to PSAs. Notably we will explore the positioning of the French methodological approach - as applied in the EPS 1300 1 and EPS 900 2 PSAs - compared to other approaches (Part One). This reflection leads to more general reflection: what contents, for what PSA? This is why, in Part Two, we will try to offer a framework for definition of the criteria a PSA should satisfy to meet the clearly identified needs. Finally, Part Three will quickly summarize the questions approached in the first two parts, as an introduction to the debate. 15 refs

  9. Developing a Mental Health eClinic to Improve Access to and Quality of Mental Health Care for Young People: Using Participatory Design as Research Methodologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ospina-Pinillos, Laura; Davenport, Tracey A; Ricci, Cristina S; Milton, Alyssa C; Scott, Elizabeth M; Hickie, Ian B

    2018-05-28

    Each year, many young Australians aged between 16 and 25 years experience a mental health disorder, yet only a small proportion access services and even fewer receive timely and evidence-based treatments. Today, with ever-increasing access to the Internet and use of technology, the potential to provide all young people with access (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) to the support they require to improve their mental health and well-being is promising. The aim of this study was to use participatory design (PD) as research methodologies with end users (young people aged between 16 and 25 years and youth health professionals) and our research team to develop the Mental Health eClinic (a Web-based mental health clinic) to improve timely access to, and better quality, mental health care for young people across Australia. A research and development (R&D) cycle for the codesign and build of the Mental Health eClinic included several iterative PD phases: PD workshops; translation of knowledge and ideas generated during workshops to produce mockups of webpages either as hand-drawn sketches or as wireframes (simple layout of a webpage before visual design and content is added); rapid prototyping; and one-on-one consultations with end users to assess the usability of the alpha build of the Mental Health eClinic. Four PD workshops were held with 28 end users (young people n=18, youth health professionals n=10) and our research team (n=8). Each PD workshop was followed by a knowledge translation session. At the conclusion of this cycle, the alpha prototype was built, and one round of one-on-one end user consultation sessions was conducted (n=6; all new participants, young people n=4, youth health professionals n=2). The R&D cycle revealed the importance of five key components for the Mental Health eClinic: a home page with a visible triage system for those requiring urgent help; a comprehensive online physical and mental health assessment; a detailed dashboard of results; a

  10. Características de frutos do meloeiro variando número e posição de frutos na planta Yield and quality of muskmelon varying fruit number and position in the plant, in protected cultivation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Cleiton F de Queiroga

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available O trabalho foi conduzido em ambiente protegido, em área experimental da Universidade Federal de Viçosa, de 26/09/05 a 24/01/06, onde se objetivou avaliar a produtividade e a qualidade de frutos do meloeiro, variando número e posição de frutos na planta. Os tratamentos constaram de número de frutos por planta (1 e 2 e posição de fixação de frutos na planta (entre 5(0 e 8(0 nós e 15(0 e 18(0 nós. O delineamento experimental utilizado foi de blocos ao acaso no esquema fatorial 2 x 2, com 5 repetições. Utilizou-se a 'Coronado F1', variedade reticulatus do grupo Cantaloupe, cultivada em vasos plásticos de 11,5 dm³ preenchidos com fibra de coco comercial. Plantas com um fruto apresentaram maior duração do período de colheita, área foliar (AF (5(0 - 8(0 nó, massa média de frutos (MMF, reticulação da casca (RC, espessura da polpa (EP, comprimento (CF e diâmetro de frutos (DF, sólidos solúveis totais (SST, açúcares solúveis totais (AST, açúcares não redutores (ANR e menor produtividade comercial (PCF. A condução com frutos fixados entre os 15(0 e 18(0 nós, comparado a frutos fixados entre os 5(0 e 8(0 nós, proporcionou maior número de dias para iniciar e terminar a colheita, AF, MMF, PCF, EP, CF e DF (em plantas com 1 fruto, índice de maturação, AST, ANR e menor RC, acidez total titulável e concentração de açúcares redutores.The study was carried out in a greenhouse of the Universidade Federal de Viçosa, Minas Gerais State, Brazil, from 26/09/05 to 24/01/06, to evaluate the yield and quality of the melon fruit, varying the number and position of fruits on the plant. The treatments consisted of fruit number per plant (1 and 2 and fruit position in the plant (5th - 8th node and 15th - 18th node. A randomized block design was used, in a 2 x 2 factorial scheme, with 5 replications. The 'Coronado F1', variety reticulatus of the Cantaloupe group was cultivated in 11.5 dm³ plastic pots with commercial coconut

  11. Practical demonstration of urban air quality simulation models. Part I. A report of the NATO/CCMS pilot study on air pollution assessment methodology and modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1980-08-01

    Report shows cooperation of NATO member nations in developing standardized methods for emissions data storage and retrieval to support requirements in conduct of national air quality management programs. Shows cooperation in developing standardized techniques for projecting emissions and predicting future ambient air quality.

  12. Back-and-Forth Methodology for Objective Voice Quality Assessment: From/to Expert Knowledge to/from Automatic Classification of Dysphonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fredouille, Corinne; Pouchoulin, Gilles; Ghio, Alain; Revis, Joana; Bonastre, Jean-François; Giovanni, Antoine

    2009-12-01

    This paper addresses voice disorder assessment. It proposes an original back-and-forth methodology involving an automatic classification system as well as knowledge of the human experts (machine learning experts, phoneticians, and pathologists). The goal of this methodology is to bring a better understanding of acoustic phenomena related to dysphonia. The automatic system was validated on a dysphonic corpus (80 female voices), rated according to the GRBAS perceptual scale by an expert jury. Firstly, focused on the frequency domain, the classification system showed the interest of 0-3000 Hz frequency band for the classification task based on the GRBAS scale. Later, an automatic phonemic analysis underlined the significance of consonants and more surprisingly of unvoiced consonants for the same classification task. Submitted to the human experts, these observations led to a manual analysis of unvoiced plosives, which highlighted a lengthening of VOT according to the dysphonia severity validated by a preliminary statistical analysis.

  13. Back-and-Forth Methodology for Objective Voice Quality Assessment: From/to Expert Knowledge to/from Automatic Classification of Dysphonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corinne Fredouille

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper addresses voice disorder assessment. It proposes an original back-and-forth methodology involving an automatic classification system as well as knowledge of the human experts (machine learning experts, phoneticians, and pathologists. The goal of this methodology is to bring a better understanding of acoustic phenomena related to dysphonia. The automatic system was validated on a dysphonic corpus (80 female voices, rated according to the GRBAS perceptual scale by an expert jury. Firstly, focused on the frequency domain, the classification system showed the interest of 0–3000 Hz frequency band for the classification task based on the GRBAS scale. Later, an automatic phonemic analysis underlined the significance of consonants and more surprisingly of unvoiced consonants for the same classification task. Submitted to the human experts, these observations led to a manual analysis of unvoiced plosives, which highlighted a lengthening of VOT according to the dysphonia severity validated by a preliminary statistical analysis.

  14. Reduction of Complications of Local Anaesthesia in Dental Healthcare Setups by Application of the Six Sigma Methodology: A Statistical Quality Improvement Technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akifuddin, Syed; Khatoon, Farheen

    2015-12-01

    Health care faces challenges due to complications, inefficiencies and other concerns that threaten the safety of patients. The purpose of his study was to identify causes of complications encountered after administration of local anaesthesia for dental and oral surgical procedures and to reduce the incidence of complications by introduction of six sigma methodology. DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control) process of Six Sigma was taken into consideration to reduce the incidence of complications encountered after administration of local anaesthesia injections for dental and oral surgical procedures using failure mode and effect analysis. Pareto analysis was taken into consideration to analyse the most recurring complications. Paired z-sample test using Minitab Statistical Inference and Fisher's exact test was used to statistically analyse the obtained data. The p-value six sigma improvement methodology in healthcare tends to deliver consistently better results to the patients as well as hospitals and results in better patient compliance as well as satisfaction.

  15. Testing methodologies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bender, M.A.

    1990-01-01

    Several methodologies are available for screening human populations for exposure to ionizing radiation. Of these, aberration frequency determined in peripheral blood lymphocytes is the best developed. Individual exposures to large doses can easily be quantitated, and population exposures to occupational levels can be detected. However, determination of exposures to the very low doses anticipated from a low-level radioactive waste disposal site is more problematical. Aberrations occur spontaneously, without known cause. Exposure to radiation induces no new or novel types, but only increases their frequency. The limitations of chromosomal aberration dosimetry for detecting low level radiation exposures lie mainly in the statistical signal to noise'' problem, the distribution of aberrations among cells and among individuals, and the possible induction of aberrations by other environmental occupational or medical exposures. However, certain features of the human peripheral lymphocyte-chromosomal aberration system make it useful in screening for certain types of exposures. Future technical developments may make chromosomal aberration dosimetry more useful for low-level radiation exposures. Other methods, measuring gene mutations or even minute changes on the DNA level, while presently less will developed techniques, may eventually become even more practical and sensitive assays for human radiation exposure. 15 refs.

  16. Testing methodologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bender, M.A.

    1990-01-01

    Several methodologies are available for screening human populations for exposure to ionizing radiation. Of these, aberration frequency determined in peripheral blood lymphocytes is the best developed. Individual exposures to large doses can easily be quantitated, and population exposures to occupational levels can be detected. However, determination of exposures to the very low doses anticipated from a low-level radioactive waste disposal site is more problematical. Aberrations occur spontaneously, without known cause. Exposure to radiation induces no new or novel types, but only increases their frequency. The limitations of chromosomal aberration dosimetry for detecting low level radiation exposures lie mainly in the statistical ''signal to noise'' problem, the distribution of aberrations among cells and among individuals, and the possible induction of aberrations by other environmental occupational or medical exposures. However, certain features of the human peripheral lymphocyte-chromosomal aberration system make it useful in screening for certain types of exposures. Future technical developments may make chromosomal aberration dosimetry more useful for low-level radiation exposures. Other methods, measuring gene mutations or even minute changes on the DNA level, while presently less will developed techniques, may eventually become even more practical and sensitive assays for human radiation exposure. 15 refs

  17. Formulation and Evaluation of Cookies Containing Germinated Pigeon Pea, Fermented Sorghum and Cocoyam Flour Blends using Mixture Response Surface Methodology

    OpenAIRE

    Laura C. Okpala; Eric C. Okoli

    2011-01-01

    Cookies were produced from blends of germinated pigeon pea, fermented sorghum and cocoyam flours. The study was carried out to evaluate the effects of varying the proportions of these components on the sensory and protein quality of the cookies. The sensory attributes studied were colour, taste, texture, crispiness and general acceptability while the protein quality indices were Biological Value (BV) and Net Protein Utilization (NPU). Mixture response surface methodology was used to model the...

  18. Development of a quality management system (QMS) for borehole investigations. (2) Evaluation of applicability of QMS methodology for the hydrochemical dataset

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kunimaru, Takanori; Ota, Kunio; Amano, Kenji; Alexander, W. Russell

    2011-01-01

    An appropriate QMS, which is among the first tools required for repository site characterisation, will save on effort by reducing errors and the requirement to resample and reanalyse - but this can only be guaranteed by continuously assessing if the system is truly fit-for-purpose and amending it as necessary based on the practical experience of the end-users on-site. A QA audit of hydrochemical datasets for boreholes HDB-1-11 from Horonobe URL project by JAEA has been carried out by the application of a formal QA analysis which is based on the methodology previously employed for groundwaters during the recent site characterisation programme in Sweden. This methodology has been successfully applied to the groundwaters of the fractured crystalline rocks of the Fennoscandian Shield and has now been adapted and applied to some of the ground- and porewaters of the Horonobe URL area. This paper will present this system in the context of the Japanese national programme and elucidate improvements made during hands-on application of the borehole investigation QMS. Further improvements foreseen for the future will also be discussed with a view of removing inter-operator variability as much as is possible. Only then can confidence by placed in URL project or repository site hydrochemical datasets. (author)

  19. Literacy research methodologies

    CERN Document Server

    Duke, Nell K

    2012-01-01

    The definitive reference on literacy research methods, this book serves as a key resource for researchers and as a text in graduate-level courses. Distinguished scholars clearly describe established and emerging methodologies, discuss the types of questions and claims for which each is best suited, identify standards of quality, and present exemplary studies that illustrate the approaches at their best. The book demonstrates how each mode of inquiry can yield unique insights into literacy learning and teaching and how the methods can work together to move the field forward.   New to This Editi

  20. Exploration of the methodological quality and clinical usefulness of a cross-sectional sample of published guidance about exercise training and physical activity for the secondary prevention of coronary heart disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Bridget; Glasziou, Paul; Hoffmann, Tammy

    2017-06-13

    Clinicians are encouraged to use guidelines to assist in providing evidence-based secondary prevention to patients with coronary heart disease. However, the expanding number of publications providing guidance about exercise training may confuse cardiac rehabilitation clinicians. We therefore sought to explore the number, scope, publication characteristics, methodological quality, and clinical usefulness of published exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation guidance. We included publications recommending physical activity, exercise or cardiac rehabilitation for patients with coronary heart disease. These included systematically developed clinical practice guidelines, as well as other publications intended to support clinician decision making, such as position papers or consensus statements. Publications were obtained via electronic searches of preventive cardiology societies, guideline databases and PubMed, to November 2016. Publication characteristics were extracted, and two independent assessors evaluated quality using the 23-item Appraisal of Guidelines Research and Evaluation II (AGREE) tool. Fifty-four international publications from 1994 to 2016 were identified. Most were found on preventive cardiology association websites (n = 35; 65%) and were freely accessible (n = 50; 93%). Thirty (56%) publications contained only broad recommendations for physical activity and cardiac rehabilitation referral, while 24 (44%) contained the necessary detailed exercise training recommendations. Many were labelled as "guidelines", however publications with other titles (e.g. scientific statements) were common (n = 24; 44%). This latter group of publications contained a significantly greater proportion of detailed exercise training recommendations than clinical guidelines (p = 0.017). Wide variation in quality also existed, with 'applicability' the worst scoring AGREE II domain for clinical guidelines (mean score 53%) and 'rigour of development' rated lowest for other

  1. A proposed methodology for impact assessment of air quality traffic-related measures: The case of PM2.5 in Beijing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontes, Tânia; Li, Peilin; Barros, Nelson; Zhao, Pengjun

    2018-08-01

    Air quality traffic-related measures have been implemented worldwide to control the pollution levels of urban areas. Although some of those measures are claiming environmental improvements, few studies have checked their real impact. In fact, quantitative estimates are often focused on reducing emissions, rather than on evaluating the actual measures' effect on air quality. Even when air quality studies are conducted, results are frequently unclear. In order to properly assess the real impact on air quality of traffic-related measures, a statistical method is proposed. The method compares the pollutant concentration levels observed after the implementation of a measure with the concentration values of the previous year. Short- and long-term impact is assessed considering not only their influence on the average pollutant concentration, but also on its maximum level. To control the effect of the main confounding factors, only the days with similar environmental conditions are analysed. The changeability of the key meteorological variables that affect the transport and dispersion of the pollutant studied are used to identify and group the days categorized as similar. Resemblance of the pollutants' concentration of the previous day is also taken into account. The impact of the road traffic measures on the air pollutants' concentration is then checked for those similar days using specific statistical functions. To evaluate the proposed method, the impact on PM 2.5 concentrations of two air quality traffic-related measures (M1 and M2) implemented in the city of Beijing are taken into consideration: M1 was implemented in 2009, restricting the circulation of yellow-labelled vehicles, while M2 was implemented in 2014, restricting the circulation of heavy-duty vehicles. To compare the results of each measure, a time-period when these measures were not applied is used as case-control. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Regional Issue Identification and Assessment Program (RIIA). A methodology for analyzing the short-term air quality impacts of new power plants: issue paper 5

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipfert, F.W.

    1979-07-01

    A simplified methodology is presented, based on Gaussian plume relationships, which could be used to assess regulatory constraints and vegetation damage for new power plants. Data input requirements include: (a) power plant size (MW), (b) fuel type, sulfur content, and level of control, and (c) nearby terrain elevation difference, with respect to stack base, for critical receptors. Based on sample calculations the 24-hour PSD increment is seen to be the most restrictive, using the ASME dispersion coefficients. An 800-MW plant (which is close to the optimum size from cost and reliability considerations according to a recent analysis), could be forced to reduce emissions below the levels assumed in this paper if adverse conditions were encountered. For example, terrain features higher than about 300 m at the critical distance from the plant could be restrictive, as could sufficiently persistent winds that would confine 24-hour plume spreading to <10/sup 0/.

  3. Editorial: Research as Practice: On Critical Methodologies. Qualitative Research in Psychology Sage Publications Ltd., GB ISSN: 1478-0887 Elektronisk ISSN: 1478-0895 FI quality: 2008: 1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nissen, Morten

    2007-01-01

    Table of contents: Motzkau and Jefferson: Research as Practice: On Critical Methodologies (editorial) Jefferson and Huniche: (Re) Searching for persons in practice: Field based methods for critical psychological practice research Khawaja and Mørck: Researcher positioning - Muslim ‘otherness......' and beyond Hasse and Trentemøller: The method of culture contrast Nissen: Objectification and Prototype Lee: Researching Children's Diets in England: Critical Methods in a Consumer Society Nolas: Between the ideal and the real: using ethnography as a way of extending our language of change Motzkau......: The Semiotic of Accusation: Thinking about deconstruction, development, the critique of practice and the practice of critique Zavos and Biglia: Embodying Feminist Research: learning from action research, political practices and collective knowledge...

  4. Improved robotic stereotactic body radiation therapy plan quality and planning efficacy for organ-confined prostate cancer utilizing overlap-volume histogram-driven planning methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Binbin; Pang, Dalong; Lei, Siyuan; Gatti, John; Tong, Michael; McNutt, Todd; Kole, Thomas; Dritschilo, Anatoly; Collins, Sean

    2014-01-01

    Background and purpose: This study is to determine if the overlap-volume histogram (OVH)-driven planning methodology can be adapted to robotic SBRT (CyberKnife Robotic Radiosurgery System) to further minimize the bladder and rectal doses achieved in plans manually-created by clinical planners. Methods and materials: A database containing clinically-delivered, robotic SBRT plans (7.25 Gy/fraction in 36.25 Gy) of 425 patients with localized prostate cancer was used as a cohort to establish an organ’s distance-to-dose model. The OVH-driven planning methodology was refined by adding the PTV volume factor to counter the target’s dose fall-off effect and incorporated into Multiplan to automate SBRT planning. For validation, automated plans (APs) for 12 new patients were generated, and their achieved dose/volume values were compared to the corresponding manually-created, clinically-delivered plans (CPs). A two-sided, Wilcoxon rank-sum test was used for statistical comparison with a significance level of p < 0.05. Results: PTV’s V(36.25 Gy) was comparable: 95.6% in CPs comparing to 95.1% in APs (p = 0.2). On average, the refined approach lowered V(18.12 Gy) to the bladder and rectum by 8.2% (p < 0.05) and 6.4% (p = 0.14). A physician confirmed APs were clinically acceptable. Conclusions: The improvements in APs could further reduce toxicities observed in SBRT for organ-confined prostate cancer

  5. 24 CFR 904.205 - Training methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... Training methodology. Equal in importance to the content of the pre- and post-occupancy training is the training methodology. Because groups vary, there should be adaptability in the communication and learning experience. Methods to be utilized may include group presentations, small discussion groups, special classes...

  6. Assessment of the quality and quantity of naturally induced antibody responses to EBA175RIII-V in Ghanaian children living in two communities with varying malaria transmission patterns

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abagna, Hamza B; Acquah, Festus K; Okonu, Ruth

    2018-01-01

    of malaria parasites, which can enhance immune responses against parasite antigens. This study determined the prevalence and relative avidities of naturally induced antibodies to EBA175RIII-VLl in asymptomatic children living in two communities with varying malaria transmission patterns. METHODS: An asexual...... each study site however, children living in Obom had significantly higher EBA175RIII-VLl antibody concentrations than children living in Abura (P 0.05, Mann-Whitney test). Over the course of the study, the relative antibody avidities of EBA175RIII-VLl IgG antibodies were similar within and between......BACKGROUND: Recent global reports on malaria suggest significant decrease in disease severity and an increase in control interventions in many malaria endemic countries, including Ghana. However, a major driving force sustaining malaria transmission in recent times is the asymptomatic carriage...

  7. Assessing HIV and AIDS treatment safety and health-related quality of life among cohort of Malaysian patients: a discussion on methodological approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Syed, Imran Ahmed; Syed Sulaiman, Syed Azhar; Hassali, Mohammad Azmi; Lee, Christopher K C

    2015-10-01

    Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is increasingly recognized as an important outcome and as a complement to traditional biological end points of diseases such as mortality. Unless there is a complete cure available for HIV/AIDS, development and implementation of a reliable and valid cross cultural quality of life measure is necessary to assess not only the physical and medical needs of HIV/AIDS people, but their psychological, social, environmental, and spiritual areas of life. A qualitative exploration of HIV/AIDS patients' understanding, perceptions and expectations will be carried out with the help of semi structured interview guide by in depth interviews, while quantitative assessment of patient reported adverse drug reactions and their impact on health related quality of life will be carried out by using data collection tool comprising patient demographics, SF-12, Naranjo scale, and a clinical data sheet. The findings may serve as baseline QOL data of people living with HIV/AIDS in Malaysia and also a source data to aid construction of management plan to improve HIV/AIDS patients' QOL. It will also provide basic information about HIV/AIDS patients' perceptions, expectations and believes towards HIV/AIDS and its treatment which may help in designing strategies to enhance patients' awareness which in turn can help in addressing issues related to compliance and adherence. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Symptomatic spinal metastasis: A systematic literature review of the preoperative prognostic factors for survival, neurological, functional and quality of life in surgically treated patients and methodological recommendations for prognostic studies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anick Nater

    Full Text Available While several clinical prediction rules (CPRs of survival exist for patients with symptomatic spinal metastasis (SSM, these have variable prognostic ability and there is no recognized CPR for health related quality of life (HRQoL. We undertook a critical appraisal of the literature to identify key preoperative prognostic factors of clinical outcomes in patients with SSM who were treated surgically. The results of this study could be used to modify existing or develop new CPRs.Seven electronic databases were searched (1990-2015, without language restriction, to identify studies that performed multivariate analysis of preoperative predictors of survival, neurological, functional and HRQoL outcomes in surgical patients with SSM. Individual studies were assessed for class of evidence. The strength of the overall body of evidence was evaluated using GRADE for each predictor.Among 4,818 unique citations, 17 were included; all were in English, rated Class III and focused on survival, revealing a total of 46 predictors. The strength of the overall body of evidence was very low for 39 and low for 7 predictors. Due to considerable heterogeneity in patient samples and prognostic factors investigated as well as several methodological issues, our results had a moderately high risk of bias and were difficult to interpret.The quality of evidence for predictors of survival was, at best, low. We failed to identify studies that evaluated preoperative prognostic factors for neurological, functional, or HRQoL outcomes in surgical patients with SSM. We formulated methodological recommendations for prognostic studies to promote acquiring high-quality evidence to better estimate predictor effect sizes to improve patient education, surgical decision-making and development of CPRs.

  9. Sulfonylurea herbicides – methodological challenges in setting aquatic limit values

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenkrantz, Rikke Tjørnhøj; Baun, Anders; Kusk, Kresten Ole

    according to the EU Water Framework Directive, the resulting Water Quality Standards (WQSs) are below the analytical quantification limit, making it difficult to verify compliance with the limit values. However, several methodological concerns may be raised in relation to the very low effect concentrations...... and rimsulfuron. The following parameters were varied during testing: pH, exposure duration, temperature and light/dark cycle. Preliminary results show that a decrease in pH causes an increase in toxicity for all compounds. Exposure to a high concentration for 24 hours caused a reduction in growth rate, from...... for setting limit values for SUs or if more detailed information should be gained by taking methodological considerations into account....

  10. Applying Lean Six Sigma methodologies to improve efficiency, timeliness of care, and quality of care in an internal medicine residency clinic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischman, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    Patients' connectedness to their providers has been shown to influence the success of preventive health and disease management programs. Lean Six Sigma methodologies were employed to study workflow processes, patient-physician familiarity, and appointment compliance to improve continuity of care in an internal medicine residency clinic. We used a rapid-cycle test to evaluate proposed improvements to the baseline-identified factors impeding efficient clinic visits. Time-study, no-show, and patient-physician familiarity data were collected to evaluate the effect of interventions to improve clinic efficiency and continuity of medical care. Forty-seven patients were seen in each of the intervention and control groups. The wait duration between the end of triage and the resident-patient encounter was statistically shorter for the intervention group. Trends toward shorter wait times for medical assistant triage and total encounter were also seen in the intervention group. On all measures of connectedness, both the physicians and patients in the intervention group showed a statistically significant increased familiarity with each other. This study shows that incremental changes in workflow processes in a residency clinic can have a significant impact on practice efficiency and adherence to scheduled visits for preventive health care and chronic disease management. This project used a structured "Plan-Do-Study-Act" approach.

  11. microwave oven-induced decalcification at varying temperatures

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Uwaifoh

    2012-09-30

    Sep 30, 2012 ... This study was designed to evaluate the effect of decalcifying fluid types on bone tissue architecture and its staining properties following decalcification at varying temperatures. A decalcification methodology using Golding and. Stewards (GS) fluid, and Jenkings fluid (JK), and a modern household ...

  12. The MRI-Linear Accelerator Consortium: Evidence-Based Clinical Introduction of an Innovation in Radiation Oncology Connecting Researchers, Methodology, Data Collection, Quality Assurance, and Technical Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerkmeijer, Linda G W; Fuller, Clifton D; Verkooijen, Helena M; Verheij, Marcel; Choudhury, Ananya; Harrington, Kevin J; Schultz, Chris; Sahgal, Arjun; Frank, Steven J; Goldwein, Joel; Brown, Kevin J; Minsky, Bruce D; van Vulpen, Marco

    2016-01-01

    An international research consortium has been formed to facilitate evidence-based introduction of MR-guided radiotherapy (MR-linac) and to address how the MR-linac could be used to achieve an optimized radiation treatment approach to improve patients' survival, local, and regional tumor control and quality of life. The present paper describes the organizational structure of the clinical part of the MR-linac consortium. Furthermore, it elucidates why collaboration on this large project is necessary, and how a central data registry program will be implemented.

  13. Time-varying Crash Risk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christoffersen, Peter; Feunoua, Bruno; Jeon, Yoontae

    We estimate a continuous-time model with stochastic volatility and dynamic crash probability for the S&P 500 index and find that market illiquidity dominates other factors in explaining the stock market crash risk. While the crash probability is time-varying, its dynamic depends only weakly on re...

  14. Eestlased Karlovy Varys / J. R.

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    J. R.

    2007-01-01

    Ilmar Raagi mängufilm "Klass" osaleb 42. Karlovy Vary rahvusvahelise filmifestivali võistlusprogrammis "East of the West" ja Asko Kase lühimängufilm "Zen läbi prügi" on valitud festivali kõrvalprogrammi "Forum of Independents"

  15. Esmaklassiline Karlovy Vary / Jaanus Noormets

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Noormets, Jaanus

    2007-01-01

    Ilmar Raagi mängufilm "Klass" võitis 42. Karlovy Vary rahvusvahelise filmifestivalil kaks auhinda - ametliku kõrvalvõistlusprogrammi "East of the West" eripreemia "Special mention" ja Euroopa väärtfilmikinode keti Europa Cinemas preemia. Ka Asko Kase lühifilmi "Zen läbi prügi linastumisest ning teistest auhinnasaajatest ning osalejatest

  16. Optimistlik Karlovy Vary / Jaan Ruus

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Ruus, Jaan, 1938-2017

    2007-01-01

    42. Karlovy Vary rahvusvahelise filmifestivali auhinnatud filmidest (žürii esimees Peter Bart). Kristallgloobuse sai Islandi-Saksamaa "Katseklaasilinn" (režii Baltasar Kormakur), parimaks režissööriks tunnistati norralane Bard Breien ("Negatiivse mõtlemise kunst"). Austraallase Michael James Rowlandi "Hea õnne teekond" sai žürii eripreemia

  17. Developing a set of consensus indicators to support maternity service quality improvement: using Core Outcome Set methodology including a Delphi process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunch, K J; Allin, B; Jolly, M; Hardie, T; Knight, M

    2018-05-16

    To develop a core metric set to monitor the quality of maternity care. Delphi process followed by a face-to-face consensus meeting. English maternity units. Three representative expert panels: service designers, providers and users. Maternity care metrics judged important by participants. Participants were asked to complete a two-phase Delphi process, scoring metrics from existing local maternity dashboards. A consensus meeting discussed the results and re-scored the metrics. In all, 125 distinct metrics across six domains were identified from existing dashboards. Following the consensus meeting, 14 metrics met the inclusion criteria for the final core set: smoking rate at booking; rate of birth without intervention; caesarean section delivery rate in Robson group 1 women; caesarean section delivery rate in Robson group 2 women; caesarean section delivery rate in Robson group 5 women; third- and fourth-degree tear rate among women delivering vaginally; rate of postpartum haemorrhage of ≥1500 ml; rate of successful vaginal birth after a single previous caesarean section; smoking rate at delivery; proportion of babies born at term with an Apgar score improvement. Achieving consensus on core metrics for monitoring the quality of maternity care. © 2018 The Authors. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

  18. A new methodology for cost-effectiveness studies of domestic radon remediation programmes: Quality-adjusted life-years gained within Primary Care Trusts in Central England

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coskeran, Thomas; Denman, Antony; Phillips, Paul; Gillmore, Gavin; Tornberg, Roger

    2006-01-01

    Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas, high levels of which are associated with geological formations such as those found in Northamptonshire and North Oxfordshire in the UK. The UK's National Radiological Protection Board have designated both districts as radon Affected Areas. Radiation levels due to radon, therefore, exceed 200 Bq m -3 , the UK's domestic Action Level, in over one percent of domestic properties. Because of radon's radioactivity, exposure to the gas can potentially cause lung cancer, and has been linked to some 2000 deaths a year in the UK. Consequently, when radiation levels exceed the Action Level, remediation against radon's effects is recommended to householders. This study examines the cost-effectiveness of remediation measures in Northamptonshire and North Oxfordshire by estimating cost per quality-adjusted life-year gained in four Primary Care Trusts, organisations that play a key public health policy role in the UK's National Health Service. The study is the first to apply this approach to estimating the cost-effectiveness of radon remediation programmes. Central estimates of cost per quality-adjusted life-year in the four Primary Care Trusts range from Pounds 6143 to Pounds 10 323. These values, when assessed against generally accepted criteria, suggest the remediation programmes in the trusts were cost-effective. Policy suggestions based on the estimates, and designed to improve cost-effectiveness further, are proposed for the four Primary Care Trusts and the UK's National Health Service

  19. Development and Validation of an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Indicator for Mortality After Congenital Heart Surgery Harmonized With Risk Adjustment for Congenital Heart Surgery (RACHS-1) Methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Kathy J; Koch Kupiec, Jennifer; Owens, Pamela L; Romano, Patrick S; Geppert, Jeffrey J; Gauvreau, Kimberlee

    2016-05-20

    The National Quality Forum previously approved a quality indicator for mortality after congenital heart surgery developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Several parameters of the validated Risk Adjustment for Congenital Heart Surgery (RACHS-1) method were included, but others differed. As part of the National Quality Forum endorsement maintenance process, developers were asked to harmonize the 2 methodologies. Parameters that were identical between the 2 methods were retained. AHRQ's Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project State Inpatient Databases (SID) 2008 were used to select optimal parameters where differences existed, with a goal to maximize model performance and face validity. Inclusion criteria were not changed and included all discharges for patients model includes procedure risk group, age (0-28 days, 29-90 days, 91-364 days, 1-17 years), low birth weight (500-2499 g), other congenital anomalies (Clinical Classifications Software 217, except for 758.xx), multiple procedures, and transfer-in status. Among 17 945 eligible cases in the SID 2008, the c statistic for model performance was 0.82. In the SID 2013 validation data set, the c statistic was 0.82. Risk-adjusted mortality rates by center ranged from 0.9% to 4.1% (5th-95th percentile). Congenital heart surgery programs can now obtain national benchmarking reports by applying AHRQ Quality Indicator software to hospital administrative data, based on the harmonized RACHS-1 method, with high discrimination and face validity. © 2016 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley Blackwell.

  20. Avaliação da qualidade de vida geral de agentes comunitários de saúde: a contribuição relativa das variáveis sociodemográficas e dos domínios da qualidade de vida Evaluation of overall quality of life of community health agents: the relative contribution of sociodemographic variables and domains of quality of life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Cláudia G. C. Kluthcovsky

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available OBJETIVO: Avaliar a contribuição relativa de cada domínio da qualidade de vida (físico, psicológico, relações sociais e meio ambiente e das variáveis sociodemográficas para a qualidade de vida geral de agentes comunitários de saúde de um município do interior do Paraná, Brasil. MÉTODO: Estudo descritivo, de corte transversal e com abordagem quantitativa. O grupo de estudo foi composto por 169 agentes (86,2% do total, que responderam o World Health Organization Quality of Life Instrument Bref, instrumento genérico para avaliar qualidade de vida, proposto pela Organização Mundial da Saúde. Foram utilizados testes de correlação e regressão linear multivariada. O nível de significância adotado para as análises foi de 5%. RESULTADOS: Das variáveis sociodemográficas analisadas, nenhuma contribuiu de modo significativo para o domínio geral da qualidade de vida. Para os quatro domínios, o que mais contribuiu para a qualidade de vida geral foi o físico, seguido do psicológico e do meio ambiente, os três explicando 47,9% da variância. O domínio das relações sociais não contribuiu significativamente para a qualidade de vida geral. CONCLUSÃO: Observou-se que a variância da qualidade de vida geral não foi completamente explicada pelas variáveis sociodemográficas e pelos domínios da qualidade de vida. Assim, maior atenção deve ser dada pelos pesquisadores aos diferentes modos de entender qualidade de vida, em especial valorizando métodos de pesquisa e avaliação interdisciplinar.OBJECTIVE: This study aimed at evaluating the relative contribution of each life quality domain (physical, psychological, social relationships and environment and of sociodemographic variables to overall quality of life of community health agents from a municipality located in the State of Paraná, Brazil. METHODS: A descriptive and cross-sectional study was carried out using a quantitative approach. The sample was composed of 169 agents

  1. Chemical and microbiological water quality of subsurface agricultural drains during a field trial of liquid dairy manure effluent application rate and varying tillage practices, Upper Tiffin Watershed, southeastern Michigan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haack, Sheridan Kidd; Duris, Joseph W.

    2008-01-01

    A field trial was done in the Upper Tiffin River Watershed, in southeastern Michigan, to determine the influence of liquid dairy manure effluent (LDME) management practices on the quality of agricultural subsurface-drain water. Samples from subsurface drains were analyzed for nutrients, fecal-coliform and Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria, antibiotics, chemicals typically detected in wastewater, and the occurrence of genes indicating the presence of shiga-toxin-producing E. coli, or of bovine-specific Bacteroidetes bacteria. Samples were collected from November 2, 2006, to March 20, 2007, from eight subsurface drains under field plots that received no LDME and no tillage (controls) or received 4,000 or 8,000 gallons per acre (gal/acre) of LDME and either no tillage or two different types of tillage. The two types of tillage tested were (1) ground-driven, rotary, subsurface cultivation and (2) rolling-tine aeration. Samples were collected before LDME application and at 4 hours, and 1, 2, 6, 7, and 14 days post-application. Nutrient concentrations were high in subsurface-drain water throughout the field-trial period and could not be attributed to the field-trial LDME application. Of the 59 drain-water samples, including those collected before LDME application and control samples for each date, 56 had concentrations greater than the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), Ecoregion VI recommended surface-water criterion for total phosphorus, and all samples had concentrations greater than the recommended total nitrogen criterion. Nitrate + nitrite nitrogen concentration exceeded 20 milligrams per liter for every sample and contributed most to the total nitrogen concentrations. Substantial increases in drain-water concentrations of organic and ammonia nitrogen and total phosphorus were found for all treatments, including controls, at 14 days post-application after 0.84 inch of rainfall over 2 days. E. coli concentrations exceeded the USEPA recreational-water-quality

  2. Exploring the use of grounded theory as a methodological approach to examine the 'black box' of network leadership in the national quality forum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoflund, A Bryce

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes how grounded theory was used to investigate the "black box" of network leadership in the creation of the National Quality Forum. Scholars are beginning to recognize the importance of network organizations and are in the embryonic stages of collecting and analyzing data about network leadership processes. Grounded theory, with its focus on deriving theory from empirical data, offers researchers a distinctive way of studying little-known phenomena and is therefore well suited to exploring network leadership processes. Specifically, this paper provides an overview of grounded theory, a discussion of the appropriateness of grounded theory to investigating network phenomena, a description of how the research was conducted, and a discussion of the limitations and lessons learned from using this approach.

  3. Using an innovative mixed method methodology to investigate the appropriateness of a quantitative instrument in an African context: Antiretroviral treatment and quality of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greeff, Minrie; Chepuka, Lignet M; Chilemba, Winnie; Chimwaza, Angela F; Kululanga, Lucy I; Kgositau, Mabedi; Manyedi, Eva; Shaibu, Sheila; Wright, Susan C D

    2014-01-01

    The relationship between quality of life (QoL) and antiretroviral treatment (ART) has mainly been studied using quantitative scales often not appropriate for use in other contexts and without taking peoples' lived experiences into consideration. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest incidence of HIV and AIDS yet there is paucity in research done on QoL. This research report is intended to give an account of the use of a mixed method convergent parallel design as a novice approach to evaluate an instrument's context specificity, appropriateness and usefulness in another context for which it was designed. Data were collected through a qualitative exploration of the experiences of QoL of people living with HIV or AIDS (PLHA) in Africa since being on ART, as well as the quantitative measurements obtained from the HIV/AIDS-targeted quality of life (HAT-QoL) instrument. This study was conducted in three African countries. Permission and ethical approval to conduct the study were obtained. Purposive voluntary sampling was used to recruit PLHA through mediators working in community-based HIV/AIDS organisations and health clinics. Interviews were analysed through open coding and the quantitative data through descriptive statistics and the Cronbach's alpha coefficient. A much wider range and richness of experiences were expressed than measured by the HAT-QoL instrument. Although an effective instrument for use in the USA, it was found not to be sensitive, appropriate and useful in an African context in its present form. The recommendations focus on adapting the instrument using the data from the in-depth interviews or to develop a context-sensitive instrument that could measure QoL of PLHA in Africa.

  4. Genetic polymorphisms in varied environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, J R

    1971-12-03

    Thirteen experimenital populationis of Drosophila willistoni were maintained in cages, in some of which the environments were relatively constant and in others varied. After 45 weeks, the populations were assayed by gel electrophoresis for polymorphisms at 22 protein loci. The average heterozygosity per individual and the average unmber of alleles per locus were higher in populations maintained in heterogeneous environments than in populations in more constant enviroments.

  5. The use of a lot quality assurance sampling methodology to assess and manage primary health interventions in conflict-affected West Darfur, Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pham, Kiemanh; Sharpe, Emily Chambers; Weiss, William M; Vu, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Organizations working in conflict-affected areas have a need to monitor and evaluate their programs, however this is often difficult due to the logistical challenges of conflict areas. Lot quality assurance sampling may be a suitable method of assessing programs in these situations. We conducted a secondary data analysis of information collected during Medair's routine program management functions. Medair's service area in West Darfur, Sudan was divided into seven supervisory areas. Using the available population information, a sampling frame was developed and interviews were conducted from randomly selected caretakers of children in each supervisory area every six months over 19 months. A survey instrument with questions related to key indicators for immunizations and maternal, newborn, and child health was used for the interviews. Based on Medair's goals for each indicator, decision rules were calculated for the indicators; these decision rules determined which supervisory areas and indicators performed adequately in each assessment period. Pearson's chi-squared tests, adjusted for the survey design using STATA "svy: tab" commands, were used to detect overall differences in coverage in this analysis. The coverage of tetanus toxoid vaccination among pregnant women increased from 47.2 to 69.7 % ( p value = 0.046), and births attended by a skilled health professional increased from 35.7 to 52.7 % ( p value = 0.025) from the first to last assessment periods. Measles vaccinations declined from 72.0 to 54.1 % ( p value = 0.046). The estimated coverage for the proportion of women receiving a postpartum dose of vitamin A (54.7 to 61.3 %, p value = 0.44); pregnant women receiving a clean delivery kit (54.6 to 47.1 %, p value = 0.49); and pentavalent vaccinations (49.7 to 42.1 %, p value = 0.28) did not significantly change. Lot quality assurance sampling was a feasible method for Medair staff to evaluate and optimize primary health programs

  6. Clinical trial methodology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Peace, Karl E; Chen, Ding-Geng

    2011-01-01

    ... in the pharmaceutical industry, Clinical trial methodology emphasizes the importance of statistical thinking in clinical research and presents the methodology as a key component of clinical research...

  7. Methodological basis for the optimization of a marine sea-urchin embryo test (SET) for the ecological assessment of coastal water quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saco-Alvarez, Liliana; Durán, Iria; Ignacio Lorenzo, J; Beiras, Ricardo

    2010-05-01

    The sea-urchin embryo test (SET) has been frequently used as a rapid, sensitive, and cost-effective biological tool for marine monitoring worldwide, but the selection of a sensitive, objective, and automatically readable endpoint, a stricter quality control to guarantee optimum handling and biological material, and the identification of confounding factors that interfere with the response have hampered its widespread routine use. Size increase in a minimum of n=30 individuals per replicate, either normal larvae or earlier developmental stages, was preferred to observer-dependent, discontinuous responses as test endpoint. Control size increase after 48 h incubation at 20 degrees C must meet an acceptability criterion of 218 microm. In order to avoid false positives minimums of 32 per thousand salinity, 7 pH and 2mg/L oxygen, and a maximum of 40 microg/L NH(3) (NOEC) are required in the incubation media. For in situ testing size increase rates must be corrected on a degree-day basis using 12 degrees C as the developmental threshold. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Methodology for Validating Building Energy Analysis Simulations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Judkoff, R.; Wortman, D.; O' Doherty, B.; Burch, J.

    2008-04-01

    The objective of this report was to develop a validation methodology for building energy analysis simulations, collect high-quality, unambiguous empirical data for validation, and apply the validation methodology to the DOE-2.1, BLAST-2MRT, BLAST-3.0, DEROB-3, DEROB-4, and SUNCAT 2.4 computer programs. This report covers background information, literature survey, validation methodology, comparative studies, analytical verification, empirical validation, comparative evaluation of codes, and conclusions.

  9. Formalizing the ISDF Software Development Methodology

    OpenAIRE

    Mihai Liviu DESPA

    2015-01-01

    The paper is aimed at depicting the ISDF software development methodology by emphasizing quality management and software development lifecycle. The ISDF methodology was built especially for innovative software development projects. The ISDF methodology was developed empirically by trial and error in the process of implementing multiple innovative projects. The research process began by analysing key concepts like innovation and software development and by settling the important dilemma of wha...

  10. Formalizing the ISDF Software Development Methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihai Liviu DESPA

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper is aimed at depicting the ISDF software development methodology by emphasizing quality management and software development lifecycle. The ISDF methodology was built especially for innovative software development projects. The ISDF methodology was developed empirically by trial and error in the process of implementing multiple innovative projects. The research process began by analysing key concepts like innovation and software development and by settling the important dilemma of what makes a web application innovative. Innovation in software development is presented from the end-user, project owner and project manager’s point of view. The main components of a software development methodology are identified. Thus a software development methodology should account for people, roles, skills, teams, tools, techniques, processes, activities, standards, quality measuring tools, and team values. Current software development models are presented and briefly analysed. The need for a dedicated innovation oriented software development methodology is emphasized by highlighting shortcomings of current software development methodologies when tackling innovation. The ISDF methodology is presented in the context of developing an actual application. The ALHPA application is used as a case study for emphasizing the characteristics of the ISDF methodology. The development life cycle of the ISDF methodology includes research, planning, prototyping, design, development, testing, setup and maintenance. Artefacts generated by the ISDF methodology are presented. Quality is managed in the ISDF methodology by assessing compliance, usability, reliability, repeatability, availability and security. In order to properly asses each quality component a dedicated indicator is built. A template for interpreting each indicator is provided. Conclusions are formulated and new related research topics are submitted for debate.

  11. The micro-habitat methodology. Application protocols

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sabaton, C; Valentin, S; Souchon, Y

    1995-06-01

    A strong need has been felt for guidelines to help various entities in applying the micro-habitat methodology, particularly in impact studies on hydroelectric installations. CEMAGREF and Electricite de France have developed separately two protocols with five major steps: reconnaissance of the river, selection of representative units to be studied in greater depth, morpho-dynamic measurements at one or more rates of discharge and hydraulic modeling, coupling of hydraulic and biological models, calculation of habitat-quality scores for fish, analysis of results. The two approaches give very comparable results and are essentially differentiated by the hydraulic model used. CEMAGREF uses a one-dimensional model requiring measurements at only one discharge rate. Electricite de France uses a simplified model based on measurements at several rates of discharge. This approach is possible when discharge can be controlled in the study area during data acquisition, as is generally the case downstream of hydroelectric installations. The micro-habitat methodology is now a fully operational tool with which to study changes in fish habitat quality in relation to varying discharge. It provides an element of assessment pertinent to the choice of instreaming flow to be maintained downstream of a hydroelectric installation; this information is essential when the flow characteristics (velocity, depth) and the nature of the river bed are the preponderant factors governing habitat suitability for trout or salmon. The ultimate decision must nonetheless take into account any other potentially limiting factors for the biocenoses on the one hand, and the target water use objectives on the other. In many cases, compromises must be found among different uses, different species and different stages in the fish development cycle. (Abstract Truncated)

  12. Observational methodology in sport sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Teresa Anguera

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews the conceptual framework, the key literature and the methods (observation tools, such as category systems and field formats, and coding software, etc. that should be followed when conducting research from the perspective of observational methodology. The observational designs used by the authors’ research group over the last twenty years are discussed, and the procedures for analysing data and assessing their quality are described. Mention is also made of the latest methodological trends in this field, such as the use of mixed methods.

  13. Varying Constants, Gravitation and Cosmology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Philippe Uzan

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Fundamental constants are a cornerstone of our physical laws. Any constant varying in space and/or time would reflect the existence of an almost massless field that couples to matter. This will induce a violation of the universality of free fall. Thus, it is of utmost importance for our understanding of gravity and of the domain of validity of general relativity to test for their constancy. We detail the relations between the constants, the tests of the local position invariance and of the universality of free fall. We then review the main experimental and observational constraints that have been obtained from atomic clocks, the Oklo phenomenon, solar system observations, meteorite dating, quasar absorption spectra, stellar physics, pulsar timing, the cosmic microwave background and big bang nucleosynthesis. At each step we describe the basics of each system, its dependence with respect to the constants, the known systematic effects and the most recent constraints that have been obtained. We then describe the main theoretical frameworks in which the low-energy constants may actually be varying and we focus on the unification mechanisms and the relations between the variation of different constants. To finish, we discuss the more speculative possibility of understanding their numerical values and the apparent fine-tuning that they confront us with.

  14. Weighted approximation with varying weight

    CERN Document Server

    Totik, Vilmos

    1994-01-01

    A new construction is given for approximating a logarithmic potential by a discrete one. This yields a new approach to approximation with weighted polynomials of the form w"n"(" "= uppercase)P"n"(" "= uppercase). The new technique settles several open problems, and it leads to a simple proof for the strong asymptotics on some L p(uppercase) extremal problems on the real line with exponential weights, which, for the case p=2, are equivalent to power- type asymptotics for the leading coefficients of the corresponding orthogonal polynomials. The method is also modified toyield (in a sense) uniformly good approximation on the whole support. This allows one to deduce strong asymptotics in some L p(uppercase) extremal problems with varying weights. Applications are given, relating to fast decreasing polynomials, asymptotic behavior of orthogonal polynomials and multipoint Pade approximation. The approach is potential-theoretic, but the text is self-contained.

  15. Estrelas variáveis

    OpenAIRE

    Viana, Sérgio Manuel de Oliveira

    2001-01-01

    A observação do céu nocturno é uma prática que vem da Antiguidade. Desde então e durante muito tempo pensou-se que as estrelas mantinham o brilho constante. Assim foi até ao século XVI, quando David Fabricius observou uma estrela cujo brilho variava periodicamente. Dois séculos mais tarde, Jonh Goodricke descobriu uma segunda estrela e com o desenvolvimento de instrumentos de observação este conjunto foi muito alargado e hoje inclui o Sol.A variação do brilho das estrelas variáveis permite d...

  16. Waste Package Component Design Methodology Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    D.C. Mecham

    2004-01-01

    This Executive Summary provides an overview of the methodology being used by the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) to design waste packages and ancillary components. This summary information is intended for readers with general interest, but also provides technical readers a general framework surrounding a variety of technical details provided in the main body of the report. The purpose of this report is to document and ensure appropriate design methods are used in the design of waste packages and ancillary components (the drip shields and emplacement pallets). The methodology includes identification of necessary design inputs, justification of design assumptions, and use of appropriate analysis methods, and computational tools. This design work is subject to ''Quality Assurance Requirements and Description''. The document is primarily intended for internal use and technical guidance for a variety of design activities. It is recognized that a wide audience including project management, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and others are interested to various levels of detail in the design methods and therefore covers a wide range of topics at varying levels of detail. Due to the preliminary nature of the design, readers can expect to encounter varied levels of detail in the body of the report. It is expected that technical information used as input to design documents will be verified and taken from the latest versions of reference sources given herein. This revision of the methodology report has evolved with changes in the waste package, drip shield, and emplacement pallet designs over many years and may be further revised as the design is finalized. Different components and analyses are at different stages of development. Some parts of the report are detailed, while other less detailed parts are likely to undergo further refinement. The design methodology is intended to provide designs that satisfy the safety and operational

  17. Waste Package Component Design Methodology Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D.C. Mecham

    2004-07-12

    This Executive Summary provides an overview of the methodology being used by the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) to design waste packages and ancillary components. This summary information is intended for readers with general interest, but also provides technical readers a general framework surrounding a variety of technical details provided in the main body of the report. The purpose of this report is to document and ensure appropriate design methods are used in the design of waste packages and ancillary components (the drip shields and emplacement pallets). The methodology includes identification of necessary design inputs, justification of design assumptions, and use of appropriate analysis methods, and computational tools. This design work is subject to ''Quality Assurance Requirements and Description''. The document is primarily intended for internal use and technical guidance for a variety of design activities. It is recognized that a wide audience including project management, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and others are interested to various levels of detail in the design methods and therefore covers a wide range of topics at varying levels of detail. Due to the preliminary nature of the design, readers can expect to encounter varied levels of detail in the body of the report. It is expected that technical information used as input to design documents will be verified and taken from the latest versions of reference sources given herein. This revision of the methodology report has evolved with changes in the waste package, drip shield, and emplacement pallet designs over many years and may be further revised as the design is finalized. Different components and analyses are at different stages of development. Some parts of the report are detailed, while other less detailed parts are likely to undergo further refinement. The design methodology is intended to provide designs that satisfy the safety

  18. Energy balance of the metropolitan zone of the valley of Mexico, methodology and the entailment energy-air quality; Balance de energia de la zona metropolitana del valle de Mexico metodologia y la vinculacion energia - calidad del aire

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bazan Navarrete, Gerardo [Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico, D.F. (Mexico)

    2001-07-01

    The present document raises a methodology for the elaboration of the Energy Balance of the Metropolitan Zone of the Valley of Mexico (ZMVM), in order to unify criteria and to facilitate the work of entities and investigators, mainly of those that require the entailment of energy and environment. The applied methodology, the consolidated format and the caloric unity facilitates the insertion of the Energy Balance of the ZMVM within the National Balance of Energy. The regional balances of energy have the intention of knowing the energy consumption patterns in the ZMVM and the indexes of energy intensity by sector. They establish the relationship of the indexes of energy intensity with the local and global air quality of the region, performing studies of incidence with the main polluting agents and with the greenhouse effect gases. [Spanish] El presente documento plantea una metodologia para la elaboracion del Balance de Energia de la Zona Metropolitana del Valle de Mexico (ZMVM), con el proposito de unificar criterios y facilitar el trabajo de organismos e investigadores, sobre todo de aquellos que requieren vincular energia y medio ambiente. La metodologia aplicad, el formato consolidado y la unidad calorica facilitan la insercion del Balance de Energia de la ZMVM dentro del Balance Nacional de Energia. Los balances regionales de energia tienen el proposito de conocer los patrones de consumo de energia en la ZMVM y los indices de intensidad energetica por sector. Establecen la relacion de los indices de intensidad energetica con la calidad del aire local y global de la region, realizando estudios de incidencia con los principales contaminantes y con los gases de efecto invernadero.

  19. A methodological review of qualitative case study methodology in midwifery research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atchan, Marjorie; Davis, Deborah; Foureur, Maralyn

    2016-10-01

    To explore the use and application of case study research in midwifery. Case study research provides rich data for the analysis of complex issues and interventions in the healthcare disciplines; however, a gap in the midwifery research literature was identified. A methodological review of midwifery case study research using recognized templates, frameworks and reporting guidelines facilitated comprehensive analysis. An electronic database search using the date range January 2005-December 2014: Maternal and Infant Care, CINAHL Plus, Academic Search Complete, Web of Knowledge, SCOPUS, Medline, Health Collection (Informit), Cochrane Library Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition, Wiley online and ProQuest Central. Narrative evaluation was undertaken. Clearly worded questions reflected the problem and purpose. The application, strengths and limitations of case study methods were identified through a quality appraisal process. The review identified both case study research's applicability to midwifery and its low uptake, especially in clinical studies. Many papers included the necessary criteria to achieve rigour. The included measures of authenticity and methodology were varied. A high standard of authenticity was observed, suggesting authors considered these elements to be routine inclusions. Technical aspects were lacking in many papers, namely a lack of reflexivity and incomplete transparency of processes. This review raises the profile of case study research in midwifery. Midwives will be encouraged to explore if case study research is suitable for their investigation. The raised profile will demonstrate further applicability; encourage support and wider adoption in the midwifery setting. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Partially linear varying coefficient models stratified by a functional covariate

    KAUST Repository

    Maity, Arnab

    2012-10-01

    We consider the problem of estimation in semiparametric varying coefficient models where the covariate modifying the varying coefficients is functional and is modeled nonparametrically. We develop a kernel-based estimator of the nonparametric component and a profiling estimator of the parametric component of the model and derive their asymptotic properties. Specifically, we show the consistency of the nonparametric functional estimates and derive the asymptotic expansion of the estimates of the parametric component. We illustrate the performance of our methodology using a simulation study and a real data application.

  1. A development methodology for scientific software

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cort, G.; Barrus, D.M.; Goldstone, J.A.; Miller, L.; Nelson, R.O.; Poore, R.V.

    1985-01-01

    We present the details of a software development methodology that addresses all phases of the software life cycle, yet is well suited for application by small projects with limited resources. The methodology has been developed at the Los Alamos Weapons Neutron Research (WNR) Facility and was utilized during the recent development of the WNR Data Acquisition Command Language. The methodology emphasizes the development and maintenance of comprehensive documentation for all software components. The impact of the methodology upon software quality and programmer productivity is assessed

  2. Methodological issues of genetic association studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simundic, Ana-Maria

    2010-12-01

    Genetic association studies explore the association between genetic polymorphisms and a certain trait, disease or predisposition to disease. It has long been acknowledged that many genetic association studies fail to replicate their initial positive findings. This raises concern about the methodological quality of these reports. Case-control genetic association studies often suffer from various methodological flaws in study design and data analysis, and are often reported poorly. Flawed methodology and poor reporting leads to distorted results and incorrect conclusions. Many journals have adopted guidelines for reporting genetic association studies. In this review, some major methodological determinants of genetic association studies will be discussed.

  3. Time varying, multivariate volume data reduction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ahrens, James P [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Fout, Nathaniel [UC DAVIS; Ma, Kwan - Liu [UC DAVIS

    2010-01-01

    Large-scale supercomputing is revolutionizing the way science is conducted. A growing challenge, however, is understanding the massive quantities of data produced by large-scale simulations. The data, typically time-varying, multivariate, and volumetric, can occupy from hundreds of gigabytes to several terabytes of storage space. Transferring and processing volume data of such sizes is prohibitively expensive and resource intensive. Although it may not be possible to entirely alleviate these problems, data compression should be considered as part of a viable solution, especially when the primary means of data analysis is volume rendering. In this paper we present our study of multivariate compression, which exploits correlations among related variables, for volume rendering. Two configurations for multidimensional compression based on vector quantization are examined. We emphasize quality reconstruction and interactive rendering, which leads us to a solution using graphics hardware to perform on-the-fly decompression during rendering. In this paper we present a solution which addresses the need for data reduction in large supercomputing environments where data resulting from simulations occupies tremendous amounts of storage. Our solution employs a lossy encoding scheme to acrueve data reduction with several options in terms of rate-distortion behavior. We focus on encoding of multiple variables together, with optional compression in space and time. The compressed volumes can be rendered directly with commodity graphics cards at interactive frame rates and rendering quality similar to that of static volume renderers. Compression results using a multivariate time-varying data set indicate that encoding multiple variables results in acceptable performance in the case of spatial and temporal encoding as compared to independent compression of variables. The relative performance of spatial vs. temporal compression is data dependent, although temporal compression has the

  4. ISE System Development Methodology Manual

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hayhoe, G.F.

    1992-02-17

    The Information Systems Engineering (ISE) System Development Methodology Manual (SDM) is a framework of life cycle management guidelines that provide ISE personnel with direction, organization, consistency, and improved communication when developing and maintaining systems. These guide-lines were designed to allow ISE to build and deliver Total Quality products, and to meet the goals and requirements of the US Department of Energy (DOE), Westinghouse Savannah River Company, and Westinghouse Electric Corporation.

  5. Magnetic resonance imaging methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moser, Ewald; Stadlbauer, Andreas; Windischberger, Christian; Quick, Harald H.; Ladd, Mark E.

    2009-01-01

    Magnetic resonance (MR) methods are non-invasive techniques to provide detailed, multi-parametric information on human anatomy, function and metabolism. Sensitivity, specificity, spatial and temporal resolution may, however, vary depending on hardware (e.g., field strength, gradient strength and speed) and software (optimised measurement protocols and parameters for the various techniques). Furthermore, multi-modality imaging may enhance specificity to better characterise complex disease patterns. Positron emission tomography (PET) is an interesting, largely complementary modality, which might be combined with MR. Despite obvious advantages, combining these rather different physical methods may also pose challenging problems. At this early stage, it seems that PET quality may be preserved in the magnetic field and, if an adequate detector material is used for the PET, MR sensitivity should not be significantly degraded. Again, this may vary for the different MR techniques, whereby functional and metabolic MR is more susceptible than standard anatomical imaging. Here we provide a short introduction to MR basics and MR techniques, also discussing advantages, artefacts and problems when MR hardware and PET detectors are combined. In addition to references for more detailed descriptions of MR fundamentals and applications, we provide an early outlook on this novel and exciting multi-modality approach to PET/MR. (orig.)

  6. Development of a field measurement methodology for studying the thermal indoor environment in hybrid GEOTABS buildings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kazanci, Ongun Berk; Khovalyg, Dolaana; Olesen, Bjarne W.

    2018-01-01

    buildings. The three demonstration buildings were an office building in Luxembourg, an elderly care home in Belgium, and an elementary school in Czech Republic. All of these buildings are equipped with hybrid GEOTABS systems; however, they vary in size and function, which requires a unique measurement...... methodology for studying them. These buildings already have advanced Building Management Systems (BMS); however, a more detailed measurement plan was needed for the purposes of the project to document the current performance of these systems regarding thermal indoor environment and energy performance......, and to be able to document the improvements after the implementation of the MPC. This study provides the details of the developed field measurement methodology for each of these buildings to study the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) in details. The developed measurement methodology can be applied to other...

  7. Time-varying parameter models for catchments with land use change: the importance of model structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathiraja, Sahani; Anghileri, Daniela; Burlando, Paolo; Sharma, Ashish; Marshall, Lucy; Moradkhani, Hamid

    2018-05-01

    Rapid population and economic growth in Southeast Asia has been accompanied by extensive land use change with consequent impacts on catchment hydrology. Modeling methodologies capable of handling changing land use conditions are therefore becoming ever more important and are receiving increasing attention from hydrologists. A recently developed data-assimilation-based framework that allows model parameters to vary through time in response to signals of change in observations is considered for a medium-sized catchment (2880 km2) in northern Vietnam experiencing substantial but gradual land cover change. We investigate the efficacy of the method as well as the importance of the chosen model structure in ensuring the success of a time-varying parameter method. The method was used with two lumped daily conceptual models (HBV and HyMOD) that gave good-quality streamflow predictions during pre-change conditions. Although both time-varying parameter models gave improved streamflow predictions under changed conditions compared to the time-invariant parameter model, persistent biases for low flows were apparent in the HyMOD case. It was found that HyMOD was not suited to representing the modified baseflow conditions, resulting in extreme and unrealistic time-varying parameter estimates. This work shows that the chosen model can be critical for ensuring the time-varying parameter framework successfully models streamflow under changing land cover conditions. It can also be used to determine whether land cover changes (and not just meteorological factors) contribute to the observed hydrologic changes in retrospective studies where the lack of a paired control catchment precludes such an assessment.

  8. Time-varying parameter models for catchments with land use change: the importance of model structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Pathiraja

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Rapid population and economic growth in Southeast Asia has been accompanied by extensive land use change with consequent impacts on catchment hydrology. Modeling methodologies capable of handling changing land use conditions are therefore becoming ever more important and are receiving increasing attention from hydrologists. A recently developed data-assimilation-based framework that allows model parameters to vary through time in response to signals of change in observations is considered for a medium-sized catchment (2880 km2 in northern Vietnam experiencing substantial but gradual land cover change. We investigate the efficacy of the method as well as the importance of the chosen model structure in ensuring the success of a time-varying parameter method. The method was used with two lumped daily conceptual models (HBV and HyMOD that gave good-quality streamflow predictions during pre-change conditions. Although both time-varying parameter models gave improved streamflow predictions under changed conditions compared to the time-invariant parameter model, persistent biases for low flows were apparent in the HyMOD case. It was found that HyMOD was not suited to representing the modified baseflow conditions, resulting in extreme and unrealistic time-varying parameter estimates. This work shows that the chosen model can be critical for ensuring the time-varying parameter framework successfully models streamflow under changing land cover conditions. It can also be used to determine whether land cover changes (and not just meteorological factors contribute to the observed hydrologic changes in retrospective studies where the lack of a paired control catchment precludes such an assessment.

  9. Evaluation of the effect of sulfate, alkalinity and disinfector on iron release of iron pipe and iron corrosion scale characteristics under water quality changing condition using response surface methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Fan; Shi, Baoyou; Zhang, Weiyu; Guo, Jianbo; Wu, Nana; Liu, Xinyuan

    2018-02-01

    The response surface methodology (RSM), particularly Box-Behnken design model, was used in this study to evaluate the sulfate, alkalinity and free chlorine on iron release of pipe with groundwater supply history and its iron corrosion scale characteristics under water quality changing experiment. The RSM results together with response surface contour plots indicated that the iron release of pipe section reactors was positively related with Larson Ratio and free chlorine. The thin Corrosion scales with groundwater supply history upon collection site contained Fe3O4 (18%), α-FeOOH (64%), FeCO3 (9%), β-FeOOH (8%) and γ-FeOOH (5%), besides their averaged amorphous iron oxide content was 13.6%. After the RSM water quality changing experiment, Fe3O4, amorphous iron oxide and intermediate iron products (FeCO3, Green Rust (GR)) content on scale of Cl2Rs increased, while their α-FeOOH contents decreased and β-FeOOH disappeared. The high iron released Cl2Rs receiving higher LR water (1.40-2.04) contained highest FeCO3 (20%) and amorphous iron oxide (42%), while the low iron release Cl2Rs receiving lower LR water (0.52-0.73) had higher GR(6.5%) and the amorphous iron oxide (23.7%). In high LR water (>0.73), the thin and non-protective corrosion scale containing higher amorphous iron oxide, Fe(II) derived from new produced Fe3O4 or FeCO3 or GR was easy for oxidants and sulfate ions penetration, and had higher iron release. However the same unstable corrosion scale didn’t have much iron release in low LR water (≤0.73). RSM experiment indicated that iron release of these unstable corrosion scales had close relationship with water quality (Larson Ratio and disinfectant). Optimizing the water quality of new source water and using reasonable water purification measures can help to eliminate the red water case.

  10. The Concepts of Quality, Quality Assurance and Quality Enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elassy, Noha

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This paper aims to critically review and discuss different definitions of the concepts of quality, quality assurance (QA) and quality enhancement (QE) in higher education (HE) with presenting critical perspectives of the literature. Design/methodology/approach: The paper looks at literature concerns with the meaning of quality, QA and QE,…

  11. Safety class methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Donner, E.B.; Low, J.M.; Lux, C.R.

    1992-01-01

    DOE Order 6430.1A, General Design Criteria (GDC), requires that DOE facilities be evaluated with respect to ''safety class items.'' Although the GDC defines safety class items, it does not provide a methodology for selecting safety class items. The methodology described in this paper was developed to assure that Safety Class Items at the Savannah River Site (SRS) are selected in a consistent and technically defensible manner. Safety class items are those in the highest of four categories determined to be of special importance to nuclear safety and, merit appropriately higher-quality design, fabrication, and industrial test standards and codes. The identification of safety class items is approached using a cascading strategy that begins at the 'safety function' level (i.e., a cooling function, ventilation function, etc.) and proceeds down to the system, component, or structure level. Thus, the items that are required to support a safety function are SCls. The basic steps in this procedure apply to the determination of SCls for both new project activities, and for operating facilities. The GDC lists six characteristics of SCls to be considered as a starting point for safety item classification. They are as follows: 1. Those items whose failure would produce exposure consequences that would exceed the guidelines in Section 1300-1.4, ''Guidance on Limiting Exposure of the Public,'' at the site boundary or nearest point of public access 2. Those items required to maintain operating parameters within the safety limits specified in the Operational Safety Requirements during normal operations and anticipated operational occurrences. 3. Those items required for nuclear criticality safety. 4. Those items required to monitor the release of radioactive material to the environment during and after a Design Basis Accident. Those items required to achieve, and maintain the facility in a safe shutdown condition 6. Those items that control Safety Class Item listed above

  12. METHODOLOGY OF REGIONAL GOVERNANCE QUALITY ASSESSMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga Soboleva

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The definition of influence factors on economic development of the region remains today the most important issue that will choose the most effective direction of investment, and will allow identifying the highest risks to the realization of actions directed on development of territories.

  13. Finding a balance between "value added" and feeling valued: revising models of care. The human factor of implementing a quality improvement initiative using Lean methodology within the healthcare sector.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deans, Rachel; Wade, Shawna

    2011-01-01

    Growing demand from clients waiting to access vital services in a healthcare sector under economic constraint, coupled with the pressure for ongoing improvement within a multi-faceted organization, can have a significant impact on the front-line staff, who are essential to the successful implementation of any quality improvement initiative. The Lean methodology is a management system for continuous improvement based on the Toyota Production System; it focuses on two main themes: respect for people and the elimination of waste or non-value-added activities. Within the Lean process, value-added is used to describe any activity that contributes directly to satisfying the needs of the client, and non-value-added refers to any activity that takes time, space or resources but does not contribute directly to satisfying client needs. Through the revision of existing models of service delivery, the authors' organization has made an impact on increasing access to care and has supported successful engagement of staff in the process, while ensuring that the focus remains on the central needs of clients and families accessing services. While the performance metrics continue to exhibit respectable results for this strategic priority, further gains are expected over the next 18-24 months.

  14. The operation quality indicator at the CNOS/COSR-N - a new methodological concept for the process control; O indicador de qualidade da operacao no CNOS/COSR-N (Centro Nacional de Operacao do Sistema e Centro Regional de Operacao Norte), um novo conceito metodologico e de controle de processo

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliveira, Adel Mendonca Souza de; Zaroni, Delfim Maduro [ONS - Operador Nacional do Sistema Eletrico, Brasilia, DF (Brazil). Centro Nacional de Operacao do Sistema. Centro Regional de Operacao Norte]. E-mails: adel@ons.org.br; delfim@ons.org.br

    2000-07-01

    This work presents a new methodological concept of the performance indicator developed at the System Operation National Center and at the North Operation Regional Center, in accordance with the ISO-9002 norm. The paper also presents the completely computerized Indicator Calculation Process Control, and the good results obtained with the implantation of the Operation Quality Indicator.

  15. Qualidade de vida e saúde bucal em crianças e adolescentes: aspectos conceituais e metodológicos Quality of life and oral health in children and adolescents: conceptual and methodological aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taís de Souza Barbosa

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available O interesse pela qualidade de vida e saúde bucal em crianças e adolescentes vem aumentando, já que as desordens orais provavelmente apresentam efeito negativo na qualidade de vida das mesmas. Neste sentido, questionários que visam a avaliar o impacto da saúde bucal no bem-estar têm sido desenvolvidos e adaptados para este grupo específico. O objetivo deste trabalho é descrever a relação entre qualidade de vida e saúde bucal em crianças e adolescentes, focalizando aspectos conceituais e metodológicos. Os instrumentos desenvolvidos para avaliar a qualidade de vida e saúde bucal em crianças e adolescentes são: o Child Perceptions Questionnaire (CPQ, para crianças de 8-10 (CPQ8-10 e 11-14 anos (CPQ11-14; o Child-Oral Impacts on Daily Performances, para a idade de 11-12 anos; o Child Oral Health Impact Profile, para crianças de 8-14 anos, e o Early Childhood Oral Health Impact Scale para a faixa etária de 2-5 anos. Apesar dos progressos nessa área, ainda existem muitas questões a serem debatidas e respondidas, como a necessidade de questionários específicos para diferentes idades, a participação dos responsáveis como respondentes secundários e a avaliação do impacto da saúde bucal da criança e do adolescente na família.There has been increasing interest in the oral health-related quality of life of children and adolescents, since pediatric oral disorders are likely to have a negative effect on children's quality of life. So the questionnaires that aim to assess the impact of oral health on child' and adolescent' quality of life has been developed or adapted to this specific group. The aim of this study was to describe the relationship between the quality of life and oral health in children and adolescents, focalizing conceptual and methodological aspects. The instruments developed to assess oral health-related quality of life in children and adolescents are: the Child Perceptions Questionnaire (CPQ, for children aged 8

  16. IMSF: Infinite Methodology Set Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ota, Martin; Jelínek, Ivan

    Software development is usually an integration task in enterprise environment - few software applications work autonomously now. It is usually a collaboration of heterogeneous and unstable teams. One serious problem is lack of resources, a popular result being outsourcing, ‘body shopping’, and indirectly team and team member fluctuation. Outsourced sub-deliveries easily become black boxes with no clear development method used, which has a negative impact on supportability. Such environments then often face the problems of quality assurance and enterprise know-how management. The used methodology is one of the key factors. Each methodology was created as a generalization of a number of solved projects, and each methodology is thus more or less connected with a set of task types. When the task type is not suitable, it causes problems that usually result in an undocumented ad-hoc solution. This was the motivation behind formalizing a simple process for collaborative software engineering. Infinite Methodology Set Framework (IMSF) defines the ICT business process of adaptive use of methods for classified types of tasks. The article introduces IMSF and briefly comments its meta-model.

  17. An Overview of Key Indicators and Evaluation Tools for Assessing Housing Quality: A Literature Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Rajan Chandra; Sarkar, Satyaki; Mandal, Nikhil Ranjan

    2017-09-01

    The issue of the housing quality has been addressed for various stakeholders at different levels. There exist varied opinion about its measurability and possible applications. Thus the study is carried out to have an insight into the concept of housing quality and its relevance in the changing demographics, technological, socio-economic and socio-cultural conditions. This study attempts to summarize the literature that addresses past research concerned with factors related to housing quality, its measurement methodology and critically examines the broad key indicators identified to have impact upon enhancing the housing quality. This work discusses the recent techniques which are extensively used for analysis of housing quality.

  18. Adenoma detection rate varies greatly during colonoscopy training

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Doorn, Sascha C.; Klanderman, Robert B.; Hazewinkel, Yark; Fockens, Paul; Dekker, Evelien

    2015-01-01

    The adenoma detection rate (ADR) is considered the most important quality indicator for colonoscopy and varies widely among colonoscopists. It is unknown whether the ADR of gastroenterology consultants can already be predicted during their colonoscopy training. To evaluate the ADR of fellows in

  19. Disposal Criticality Analysis Methodology Topical Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horton, D.G.

    1998-01-01

    The fundamental objective of this topical report is to present the planned risk-informed disposal criticality analysis methodology to the NRC to seek acceptance that the principles of the methodology and the planned approach to validating the methodology are sound. The design parameters and environmental assumptions within which the waste forms will reside are currently not fully established and will vary with the detailed waste package design, engineered barrier design, repository design, and repository layout. Therefore, it is not practical to present the full validation of the methodology in this report, though a limited validation over a parameter range potentially applicable to the repository is presented for approval. If the NRC accepts the methodology as described in this section, the methodology will be fully validated for repository design applications to which it will be applied in the License Application and its references. For certain fuel types (e.g., intact naval fuel), a ny processes, criteria, codes or methods different from the ones presented in this report will be described in separate addenda. These addenda will employ the principles of the methodology described in this report as a foundation. Departures from the specifics of the methodology presented in this report will be described in the addenda

  20. Disposal Criticality Analysis Methodology Topical Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    D.G. Horton

    1998-01-01

    The fundamental objective of this topical report is to present the planned risk-informed disposal criticality analysis methodology to the NRC to seek acceptance that the principles of the methodology and the planned approach to validating the methodology are sound. The design parameters and environmental assumptions within which the waste forms will reside are currently not fully established and will vary with the detailed waste package design, engineered barrier design, repository design, and repository layout. Therefore, it is not practical to present the full validation of the methodology in this report, though a limited validation over a parameter range potentially applicable to the repository is presented for approval. If the NRC accepts the methodology as described in this section, the methodology will be fully validated for repository design applications to which it will be applied in the License Application and its references. For certain fuel types (e.g., intact naval fuel), any processes, criteria, codes or methods different from the ones presented in this report will be described in separate addenda. These addenda will employ the principles of the methodology described in this report as a foundation. Departures from the specifics of the methodology presented in this report will be described in the addenda

  1. Propuesta metodológica para implementar la gestión pública de la calidad de vida/Methodological proposal to develop a public management quality of live

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ángela Lorena Carreño-Mendoza

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available El presente trabajo tiene como objetivo realizar una propuesta metodológica para lograr la alineación de las políticas de los organismos, entidades y personas jurídicas del sector público, con los objetivos del Plan Nacional para el Buen Vivir en Ecuador; así como la implementación de la gestión pública (administrativa y operacional presupuestaria, derivando por consiguiente en el control y la evaluación de la gestión de la calidad de vida. Los métodos utilizados fueron: Fenomenológico, Investigación-acción-participación, Dialéctico-materialista, Lógico e histórico, Inductivo-deductivo y Analítico-sintético. Como resultado fundamental, además del modelo planteado, se obtiene un procedimiento general que permite la operacionalización del modelo a través de las técnicas y herramientas que se definen en cada una de sus etapas./This article is based on a methodological proposal, which scope is to align the policies and objectives of the National Plan for Good Living with public sector organizations policy making; and to implement public management (administrative, operational and budgetary turning out in the subsequent control and evaluation of quality of life management. The methods used in this article were: phenomena analysis, research-action–participation, dialectical-materialistic, historic and logical, inductive-deductive as well as analytic-synthetic. The main results of this research focus on the design of a conceptual model to be implemented by a general procedure containing several techniques and tools organized within its phases.

  2. Scenario development methodologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eng, T.; Hudson, J.; Stephansson, O.

    1994-11-01

    In the period 1981-1994, SKB has studied several methodologies to systematize and visualize all the features, events and processes (FEPs) that can influence a repository for radioactive waste in the future. All the work performed is based on the terminology and basic findings in the joint SKI/SKB work on scenario development presented in the SKB Technical Report 89-35. The methodologies studied are a) Event tree analysis, b) Influence diagrams and c) Rock Engineering Systems (RES) matrices. Each one of the methodologies is explained in this report as well as examples of applications. One chapter is devoted to a comparison between the two most promising methodologies, namely: Influence diagrams and the RES methodology. In conclusion a combination of parts of the Influence diagram and the RES methodology is likely to be a promising approach. 26 refs

  3. Reliability Centered Maintenance - Methodologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammerer, Catherine C.

    2009-01-01

    Journal article about Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) methodologies used by United Space Alliance, LLC (USA) in support of the Space Shuttle Program at Kennedy Space Center. The USA Reliability Centered Maintenance program differs from traditional RCM programs because various methodologies are utilized to take advantage of their respective strengths for each application. Based on operational experience, USA has customized the traditional RCM methodology into a streamlined lean logic path and has implemented the use of statistical tools to drive the process. USA RCM has integrated many of the L6S tools into both RCM methodologies. The tools utilized in the Measure, Analyze, and Improve phases of a Lean Six Sigma project lend themselves to application in the RCM process. All USA RCM methodologies meet the requirements defined in SAE JA 1011, Evaluation Criteria for Reliability-Centered Maintenance (RCM) Processes. The proposed article explores these methodologies.

  4. Methodological update in Medicina Intensiva.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García Garmendia, J L

    2018-04-01

    Research in the critically ill is complex by the heterogeneity of patients, the difficulties to achieve representative sample sizes and the number of variables simultaneously involved. However, the quantity and quality of records is high as well as the relevance of the variables used, such as survival. The methodological tools have evolved to offering new perspectives and analysis models that allow extracting relevant information from the data that accompanies the critically ill patient. The need for training in methodology and interpretation of results is an important challenge for the intensivists who wish to be updated on the research developments and clinical advances in Intensive Medicine. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier España, S.L.U. y SEMNIM. All rights reserved.

  5. Methodology for building confidence measures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramson, Aaron L.

    2004-04-01

    This paper presents a generalized methodology for propagating known or estimated levels of individual source document truth reliability to determine the confidence level of a combined output. Initial document certainty levels are augmented by (i) combining the reliability measures of multiply sources, (ii) incorporating the truth reinforcement of related elements, and (iii) incorporating the importance of the individual elements for determining the probability of truth for the whole. The result is a measure of confidence in system output based on the establishing of links among the truth values of inputs. This methodology was developed for application to a multi-component situation awareness tool under development at the Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, New York. Determining how improvements in data quality and the variety of documents collected affect the probability of a correct situational detection helps optimize the performance of the tool overall.

  6. Design methodology of Dutch banknotes

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Heij, Hans A. M.

    2000-04-01

    Since the introduction of a design methodology for Dutch banknotes, the quality of Dutch paper currency has improved in more than one way. The methodology is question provides for (i) a design policy, which helps fix clear objectives; (ii) design management, to ensure a smooth cooperation between the graphic designer, printer, papermaker an central bank, (iii) a program of requirements, a banknote development guideline for all parties involved. This systematic approach enables an objective selection of design proposals, including security features. Furthermore, the project manager obtains regular feedback from the public by conducting market surveys. Each new design of a Netherlands Guilder banknote issued by the Nederlandsche Bank of the past 50 years has been an improvement on its predecessor in terms of value recognition, security and durability.

  7. Methodologies for certification of transuranic waste packages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Christensen, R.N.; Kok, K.D.

    1980-10-01

    The objective of this study was to postulate methodologies for certification that a waste package is acceptable for disposal in a licensed geologic repository. Within the context of this report, certification means the overall process which verifies that a waste package meets the criteria or specifications established for acceptance for disposal in a repository. The overall methodology for certification will include (1) certifying authorities, (2) tests and procedures, and (3) documentation and quality assurance programs. Each criterion will require a methodology that is specific to that criterion. In some cases, different waste forms will require a different methodology. The purpose of predicting certification methodologies is to provide additional information as to what changes, if any, are needed for the TRU waste in storage

  8. A varying-α brane world cosmology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Youm, Donam

    2001-08-01

    We study the brane world cosmology in the RS2 model where the electric charge varies with time in the manner described by the varying fine-structure constant theory of Bekenstein. We map such varying electric charge cosmology to the dual variable-speed-of-light cosmology by changing system of units. We comment on cosmological implications for such cosmological models. (author)

  9. Introduction to LCA Methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauschild, Michael Z.

    2018-01-01

    In order to offer the reader an overview of the LCA methodology in the preparation of the more detailed description of its different phases, a brief introduction is given to the methodological framework according to the ISO 14040 standard and the main elements of each of its phases. Emphasis...

  10. Methodologies, languages and tools

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amako, Katsuya

    1994-01-01

    This is a summary of the open-quotes Methodologies, Languages and Toolsclose quotes session in the CHEP'94 conference. All the contributions to methodologies and languages are relevant to the object-oriented approach. Other topics presented are related to various software tools in the down-sized computing environment

  11. Menopause and Methodological Doubt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spence, Sheila

    2005-01-01

    Menopause and methodological doubt begins by making a tongue-in-cheek comparison between Descartes' methodological doubt and the self-doubt that can arise around menopause. A hermeneutic approach is taken in which Cartesian dualism and its implications for the way women are viewed in society are examined, both through the experiences of women…

  12. VEM: Virtual Enterprise Methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tølle, Martin; Vesterager, Johan

    2003-01-01

    This chapter presents a virtual enterprise methodology (VEM) that outlines activities to consider when setting up and managing virtual enterprises (VEs). As a methodology the VEM helps companies to ask the right questions when preparing for and setting up an enterprise network, which works...

  13. Data Centric Development Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khoury, Fadi E.

    2012-01-01

    Data centric applications, an important effort of software development in large organizations, have been mostly adopting a software methodology, such as a waterfall or Rational Unified Process, as the framework for its development. These methodologies could work on structural, procedural, or object oriented based applications, but fails to capture…

  14. The Methodology of Magpies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Arts/Humanities researchers frequently do not explain methodology overtly; instead, they "perform" it through their use of language, textual and historic cross-reference, and theory. Here, methodologies from literary studies are shown to add to Higher Education (HE) an exegetical and critically pluralist approach. This includes…

  15. Warpage analysis on thin shell part using response surface methodology (RSM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zulhasif, Z.; Shayfull, Z.; Nasir, S. M.; Fathullah, M.; Hazwan, M. H. M.

    2017-09-01

    The optimisation of moulding parameters appropriate to reduce warpage defects produce using Autodesk Moldflow Insight (AMI) 2012 software The product is injected by using Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS) materials. This analysis has processing parameter that varies in melting temperature, mould temperature, packing pressure and packing time. Design of Experiments (DOE) has been integrated to obtain a polynomial model using Response Surface Methodology (RSM). The Glowworm Swarm Optimisation (GSO) method is used to predict a best combination parameters to minimise warpage defect in order to produce high quality parts.

  16. Control of Linear Parameter Varying Systems with Applications

    CERN Document Server

    Mohammadpour, Javad

    2012-01-01

    Control of Linear Parameter Varying Systems with Applications compiles state-of-the-art contributions on novel analytical and computational methods to address system modeling and identification, complexity reduction, performance analysis and control design for time-varying and nonlinear systems in the LPV framework. The book has an interdisciplinary character by emphasizing techniques that can be commonly applied in various engineering fields. It also includes a rich collection of illustrative applications in diverse domains to substantiate the effectiveness of the design methodologies and provide pointers to open research directions. The book is divided into three parts. The first part collects chapters of a more tutorial character on the background of LPV systems modeling and control. The second part gathers chapters devoted to the theoretical advancement of LPV analysis and synthesis methods to cope with the design constraints such as uncertainties and time delay. The third part of the volume showcases con...

  17. Software engineering methodologies and tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilcox, Lawrence M.

    1993-01-01

    Over the years many engineering disciplines have developed, including chemical, electronic, etc. Common to all engineering disciplines is the use of rigor, models, metrics, and predefined methodologies. Recently, a new engineering discipline has appeared on the scene, called software engineering. For over thirty years computer software has been developed and the track record has not been good. Software development projects often miss schedules, are over budget, do not give the user what is wanted, and produce defects. One estimate is there are one to three defects per 1000 lines of deployed code. More and more systems are requiring larger and more complex software for support. As this requirement grows, the software development problems grow exponentially. It is believed that software quality can be improved by applying engineering principles. Another compelling reason to bring the engineering disciplines to software development is productivity. It has been estimated that productivity of producing software has only increased one to two percent a year in the last thirty years. Ironically, the computer and its software have contributed significantly to the industry-wide productivity, but computer professionals have done a poor job of using the computer to do their job. Engineering disciplines and methodologies are now emerging supported by software tools that address the problems of software development. This paper addresses some of the current software engineering methodologies as a backdrop for the general evaluation of computer assisted software engineering (CASE) tools from actual installation of and experimentation with some specific tools.

  18. Consequences of varied soil hydraulic and meteorological complexity on unsaturated zone time lag estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vero, S E; Ibrahim, T G; Creamer, R E; Grant, J; Healy, M G; Henry, T; Kramers, G; Richards, K G; Fenton, O

    2014-12-01

    The true efficacy of a programme of agricultural mitigation measures within a catchment to improve water quality can be determined only after a certain hydrologic time lag period (subsequent to implementation) has elapsed. As the biophysical response to policy is not synchronous, accurate estimates of total time lag (unsaturated and saturated) become critical to manage the expectations of policy makers. The estimation of the vertical unsaturated zone component of time lag is vital as it indicates early trends (initial breakthrough), bulk (centre of mass) and total (Exit) travel times. Typically, estimation of time lag through the unsaturated zone is poor, due to the lack of site specific soil physical data, or by assuming saturated conditions. Numerical models (e.g. Hydrus 1D) enable estimates of time lag with varied levels of input data. The current study examines the consequences of varied soil hydraulic and meteorological complexity on unsaturated zone time lag estimates using simulated and actual soil profiles. Results indicated that: greater temporal resolution (from daily to hourly) of meteorological data was more critical as the saturated hydraulic conductivity of the soil decreased; high clay content soils failed to converge reflecting prevalence of lateral component as a contaminant pathway; elucidation of soil hydraulic properties was influenced by the complexity of soil physical data employed (textural menu, ROSETTA, full and partial soil water characteristic curves), which consequently affected time lag ranges; as the importance of the unsaturated zone increases with respect to total travel times the requirements for high complexity/resolution input data become greater. The methodology presented herein demonstrates that decisions made regarding input data and landscape position will have consequences for the estimated range of vertical travel times. Insufficiencies or inaccuracies regarding such input data can therefore mislead policy makers regarding

  19. Design Methodology - Design Synthesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Mogens Myrup

    2003-01-01

    Design Methodology is part of our practice and our knowledge about designing, and it has been strongly supported by the establishing and work of a design research community. The aim of this article is to broaden the reader¿s view of designing and Design Methodology. This is done by sketching...... the development of Design Methodology through time and sketching some important approaches and methods. The development is mainly forced by changing industrial condition, by the growth of IT support for designing, but also by the growth of insight into designing created by design researchers.......ABSTRACT Design Methodology shall be seen as our understanding of how to design; it is an early (emerging late 60ies) and original articulation of teachable and learnable methodics. The insight is based upon two sources: the nature of the designed artefacts and the nature of human designing. Today...

  20. GPS system simulation methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewing, Thomas F.

    1993-01-01

    The following topics are presented: background; Global Positioning System (GPS) methodology overview; the graphical user interface (GUI); current models; application to space nuclear power/propulsion; and interfacing requirements. The discussion is presented in vugraph form.

  1. Hazard classification methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brereton, S.J.

    1996-01-01

    This document outlines the hazard classification methodology used to determine the hazard classification of the NIF LTAB, OAB, and the support facilities on the basis of radionuclides and chemicals. The hazard classification determines the safety analysis requirements for a facility

  2. Nonlinear Image Denoising Methodologies

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Yufang, Bao

    2002-01-01

    In this thesis, we propose a theoretical as well as practical framework to combine geometric prior information to a statistical/probabilistic methodology in the investigation of a denoising problem...

  3. Clinical trial methodology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Peace, Karl E; Chen, Ding-Geng

    2011-01-01

    "Now viewed as its own scientific discipline, clinical trial methodology encompasses the methods required for the protection of participants in a clinical trial and the methods necessary to provide...

  4. New methodology for the analysis of the quality controls of ENUSA on PWR components; Nueva metodologia para el analisis de los controles de calidad de ENUSA sobre los componentes PWR

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Munoz, A.; Navas, I. de; Prieto, M.

    2012-07-01

    For the manufacture of PWR fuel assemblies, ENUSA receives the components of Westinghouse, who ensures its quality. However, ENUSA carried out on these components various quality controls that increase reliability and give added value.

  5. Methodology of sustainability accounting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.H. Sokil

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Modern challenges of the theory and methodology of accounting are realized through the formation and implementation of new concepts, the purpose of which is to meet the needs of users in standard and unique information. The development of a methodology for sustainability accounting is a key aspect of the management of an economic entity. The purpose of the article is to form the methodological bases of accounting for sustainable development and determine its goals, objectives, object, subject, methods, functions and key aspects. The author analyzes the theoretical bases of the definition and considers the components of the traditional accounting methodology. Generalized structural diagram of the methodology for accounting for sustainable development is offered in the article. The complex of methods and principles of sustainable development accounting for systematized and non-standard provisions has been systematized. The new system of theoretical and methodological provisions of accounting for sustainable development is justified in the context of determining its purpose, objective, subject, object, methods, functions and key aspects.

  6. Tolerable Time-Varying Overflow on Grass-Covered Slopes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven A. Hughes

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Engineers require estimates of tolerable overtopping limits for grass-covered levees, dikes, and embankments that might experience steady overflow. Realistic tolerance estimates can be used for both resilient design and risk assessment. A simple framework is developed for estimating tolerable overtopping on grass-covered slopes caused by slowly-varying (in time overtopping discharge (e.g., events like storm surges or river flood waves. The framework adapts the well-known Hewlett curves of tolerable limiting velocity as a function of overflow duration. It has been hypothesized that the form of the Hewlett curves suggests that the grass erosion process is governed by the flow work on the slope above a critical threshold velocity (referred to as excess work, and the tolerable erosional limit is reached when the cumulative excess work exceeds a given value determined from the time-dependent Hewlett curves. The cumulative excess work is expressed in terms of overflow discharge above a critical discharge that slowly varies in time, similar to a discharge hydrograph. The methodology is easily applied using forecast storm surge hydrographs at specific locations where wave action is minimal. For preliminary planning purposes, when storm surge hydrographs are unavailable, hypothetical equations for the water level and overflow discharge hydrographs are proposed in terms of the values at maximum overflow and the total duration of overflow. An example application is given to illustrate use of the methodology.

  7. Spacetime-varying couplings and Lorentz violation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kostelecky, V. Alan; Lehnert, Ralf; Perry, Malcolm J.

    2003-01-01

    Spacetime-varying coupling constants can be associated with violations of local Lorentz invariance and CPT symmetry. An analytical supergravity cosmology with a time-varying fine-structure constant provides an explicit example. Estimates are made for some experimental constraints

  8. Detection of dynamically varying interaural time differences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kohlrausch, Armin; Le Goff, Nicolas; Breebaart, Jeroen

    2010-01-01

    of fringes surrounding the probe is equal to the addition of the effects of the individual fringes. In this contribution, we present behavioral data for the same experimental condition, called dynamically varying ITD detection, but for a wider range of probe and fringe durations. Probe durations varied...

  9. Evolution of courseware development methodology : recent issues

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moonen, J.C.M.M.; Schoenmaker, Jan

    1992-01-01

    To improve the quality of courseware products and the efficiency of the courseware development process, a methodology based upon "courseware engineering", being a combination of instructional systems development and software engineering, has emerged over the last 10¿15 years. Recently, software

  10. Mechatronics methodology: 15 years of experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Efren Gorrostieta

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available This article presents a methodology to teach students to develop mechatronic projects. It was taught in higher education schools, in different universities in Mexico, in courses such as: Robotics, Control Systems, Mechatronic Systems, Artificial Intelligence, etc. The intention of this methodology is not only to achieve the integration of different subjects but also to accomplish synergy between them so that the final result may be the best possible in quality, time and robustness. Since its introduction into the educational area, this methodology was evaluated and modified for approximately five years, were substantial characteristics were adopted. For the next ten years, only minor alterations were carried out. Fifteen years of experience have proven that the methodology is useful not only for training but also for real projects. In this article, we first explain the methodology and its main characteristics, as well as a brief history of its teaching in different educational programs. Then, we present two cases were the methodology was successfully applied. The first project consisted in the design, construction and evaluation of a mobile robotic manipulator which aims to be used as an explosives ordnance device. In the second case, we document the results of a project assignment for robotics tasks carried out by students which were formerly taught with the methodology.

  11. Immigration and Competitiveness – Some Methodological Questions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tünde Patay

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Immigrants can contribute significantly to the economic and social development of regions or urban areas. Some key figures on migration are thus traditionally used in studies on local development. Beyond the usual description of migratory movements, two research fields are often in the centre of controversies, namely the labour market and the inclusion of immigrants. Comparing the European regions, the phases of urban development as well as the relevant internal and external factors present a mixed picture in Europe. At the same time, the dynamics of migratory movements and the reactions of national and subnational policies also vary. The Member States of the European Union aim to harmonise their definitions and data on migration issues, however, the daily practice leads us to the questions of reliability and comparability of migration statistics; and the interdisciplinary character of migration research offers the use of variable research methods. The aim of this study, as a part of a presentation at a conference on urban development, is to describe some key methodological issues of migration research exploring the typical questions. The first part of the paper calls attention to the importance of data quality, processing and interpretation, describing the research methods mainly used in studies on immigration. The second part summarizes the significance of immigration in regional competitiveness, pointing out the possible “stumbling stones” in the relevant migration studies. Some of these factors, the areas that are mainly in the centre of scientific and political debates, are discussed in this paper, namely the labour market challenges and issues relating to the different aspects of segregation.

  12. Regional Shelter Analysis Methodology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dillon, Michael B. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Dennison, Deborah [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Kane, Jave [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Walker, Hoyt [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Miller, Paul [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2015-08-01

    The fallout from a nuclear explosion has the potential to injure or kill 100,000 or more people through exposure to external gamma (fallout) radiation. Existing buildings can reduce radiation exposure by placing material between fallout particles and exposed people. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory was tasked with developing an operationally feasible methodology that could improve fallout casualty estimates. The methodology, called a Regional Shelter Analysis, combines the fallout protection that existing buildings provide civilian populations with the distribution of people in various locations. The Regional Shelter Analysis method allows the consideration of (a) multiple building types and locations within buildings, (b) country specific estimates, (c) population posture (e.g., unwarned vs. minimally warned), and (d) the time of day (e.g., night vs. day). The protection estimates can be combined with fallout predictions (or measurements) to (a) provide a more accurate assessment of exposure and injury and (b) evaluate the effectiveness of various casualty mitigation strategies. This report describes the Regional Shelter Analysis methodology, highlights key operational aspects (including demonstrating that the methodology is compatible with current tools), illustrates how to implement the methodology, and provides suggestions for future work.

  13. Prioritization methodology for chemical replacement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruit, Wendy; Goldberg, Ben; Schutzenhofer, Scott

    1995-01-01

    Since United States of America federal legislation has required ozone depleting chemicals (class 1 & 2) to be banned from production, The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and industry have been required to find other chemicals and methods to replace these target chemicals. This project was initiated as a development of a prioritization methodology suitable for assessing and ranking existing processes for replacement 'urgency.' The methodology was produced in the form of a workbook (NASA Technical Paper 3421). The final workbook contains two tools, one for evaluation and one for prioritization. The two tools are interconnected in that they were developed from one central theme - chemical replacement due to imposed laws and regulations. This workbook provides matrices, detailed explanations of how to use them, and a detailed methodology for prioritization of replacement technology. The main objective is to provide a GUIDELINE to help direct the research for replacement technology. The approach for prioritization called for a system which would result in a numerical rating for the chemicals and processes being assessed. A Quality Function Deployment (QFD) technique was used in order to determine numerical values which would correspond to the concerns raised and their respective importance to the process. This workbook defines the approach and the application of the QFD matrix. This technique: (1) provides a standard database for technology that can be easily reviewed, and (2) provides a standard format for information when requesting resources for further research for chemical replacement technology. Originally, this workbook was to be used for Class 1 and Class 2 chemicals, but it was specifically designed to be flexible enough to be used for any chemical used in a process (if the chemical and/or process needs to be replaced). The methodology consists of comparison matrices (and the smaller comparison components) which allow replacement technology

  14. The policy trail methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holford, John; Larson, Anne; Melo, Susana

    of ‘policy trail’, arguing that it can overcome ‘methodological nationalism’ and link structure and agency in research on the ‘European educational space’. The ‘trail’ metaphor, she suggests, captures the intentionality and the erratic character of policy. The trail connects sites and brings about change......, but – although policy may be intended to be linear, with specific outcomes – policy often has to bend, and sometimes meets insurmountable obstacles. This symposium outlines and develops the methodology, but also reports on research undertaken within a major FP7 project (LLLIght’in’Europe, 2012-15) which made use......In recent years, the “policy trail” has been proposed as a methodology appropriate to the shifting and fluid governance of lifelong learning in the late modern world (Holford et al. 2013, Holford et al. 2013, Cort 2014). The contemporary environment is marked by multi-level governance (global...

  15. Eesti film võistleb Karlovy Varys

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    2008-01-01

    8. juulil esilinastub Karlovy Vary filmifestivalil Rene Vilbre noortefilm "Mina olin siin", mille aluseks on Sass Henno romaan "Mina olin siin. Esimene arest", stsenaariumi kirjutas Ilmar Raag. Film võistleb võistlusprogrammis "East of the West"

  16. Matching Value Propositions with Varied Customer Needs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heikka, Eija-Liisa; Frandsen, Thomas; Hsuan, Juliana

    2018-01-01

    Organizations seek to manage varied customer segments using varied value propositions. The ability of a knowledge-intensive business service (KIBS) provider to formulate value propositions into attractive offerings to varied customers becomes a competitive advantage. In this specific business based...... on often highly abstract service offerings, this requires the provider to have a clear overview of its knowledge and resources and how these can be configured to obtain the desired customization of services. Hence, the purpose of this paper is to investigate how a KIBS provider can match value propositions...... with varied customer needs utilizing service modularity. To accomplish this purpose, a qualitative multiple case study is organized around 5 projects allowing within-case and cross-case comparisons. Our findings describe how through the configuration of knowledge and resources a sustainable competitive...

  17. Compilation of Instantaneous Source Functions for Varying ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Compilation of Instantaneous Source Functions for Varying Architecture of a Layered Reservoir with Mixed Boundaries and Horizontal Well Completion Part III: B-Shaped Architecture with Vertical Well in the Upper Layer.

  18. Compilation of Instantaneous Source Functions for Varying ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Compilation of Instantaneous Source Functions for Varying Architecture of a Layered Reservoir with Mixed Boundaries and Horizontal Well Completion Part IV: Normal and Inverted Letter 'h' and 'H' Architecture.

  19. Changing methodologies in TESOL

    CERN Document Server

    Spiro, Jane

    2013-01-01

    Covering core topics from vocabulary and grammar to teaching, writing speaking and listening, this textbook shows you how to link research to practice in TESOL methodology. It emphasises how current understandings have impacted on the language classroom worldwide and investigates the meaning of 'methods' and 'methodology' and the importance of these for the teacher: as well as the underlying assumptions and beliefs teachers bring to bear in their practice. By introducing you to language teaching approaches, you will explore the way these are influenced by developments in our understanding of l

  20. Creativity in phenomenological methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dreyer, Pia; Martinsen, Bente; Norlyk, Annelise

    2014-01-01

    on the methodologies of van Manen, Dahlberg, Lindseth & Norberg, the aim of this paper is to argue that the increased focus on creativity and arts in research methodology is valuable to gain a deeper insight into lived experiences. We illustrate this point through examples from empirical nursing studies, and discuss......Nursing research is often concerned with lived experiences in human life using phenomenological and hermeneutic approaches. These empirical studies may use different creative expressions and art-forms to describe and enhance an embodied and personalised understanding of lived experiences. Drawing...... may support a respectful renewal of phenomenological research traditions in nursing research....

  1. A review of methodology and analysis of nutrition and mortality surveys conducted in humanitarian emergencies from October 1993 to April 2004

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spiegel Paul B

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malnutrition prevalence and mortality rates are increasingly used as essential indicators to assess the severity of a crisis, to follow trends, and to guide decision-making, including allocation of funds. Although consensus has slowly developed on the methodology to accurately measure these indicators, errors in the application of the survey methodology and analysis have persisted. The aim of this study was to identify common methodological weaknesses in nutrition and mortality surveys and to provide practical recommendations for improvement. Methods Nutrition (N = 368 and crude mortality rate (CMR; N = 158 surveys conducted by 33 non-governmental organisations and United Nations agencies in 17 countries from October 1993 to April 2004 were analysed for sampling validity, precision, quality of measurement and calculation according to several criteria. Results One hundred and thirty (35.3% nutrition surveys and 5 (3.2% CMR surveys met the criteria for quality. Quality of surveys varied significantly depending on the agency. The proportion of nutrition surveys that met criteria for quality rose significantly from 1993 to 2004; there was no improvement for mortality surveys during this period. Conclusion Significant errors and imprecision in the methodology and reporting of nutrition and mortality surveys were identified. While there was an improvement in the quality of nutrition surveys over the years, the quality of mortality surveys remained poor. Recent initiatives aimed at standardising nutrition and mortality survey quality should be strengthened. There are still a number of methodological issues in nutrition and mortality surveys in humanitarian emergencies that need further study.

  2. Da abordagem do TQM (Total Quality Management Ao GQM (Global Quality Management: a inserção e utilização da metodologia do projeto axiomático no desenvolvimento de modelos de gestão sistêmica da qualidade From the TQM (Total Quality Management approach to GQM (Global Quality Management: the insertion and utilization of the axiomatic design methodology in the development of a quality systemic management model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Araújo Calarge

    2001-08-01

    Full Text Available A palavra qualidade tem sido nos últimos anos sinônimo de sucesso ou fracasso em muitas empresas, sendo que esta situação resulta de como estas empresas compreendem os conceitos de qualidade. O desenvolvimento destes conceitos tem feito com que a qualidade deixe de ser simplesmente um meio de controle de produtos e processos, a fim de se desenvolver uma abordagem sistêmica de gestão da qualidade para toda a organização. O objetivo deste artigo é apresentar uma proposta de um modelo de gestão sistêmica da qualidade orientado pelas necessidades e atributos do cliente de uma empresa. No desenvolvimento deste trabalho é utilizado a abordagem do Projeto Axiomático, estabelecida em função de axiomas, corolários e teoremas, com o objetivo de implementar "boas práticas de projeto" na construção do modelo de gestão sistêmica da qualidade.In the past The the word quality has been in the past years synonymous of success or loss failure in many firms, and this situation is a results in of how these firms understanding the quality concepts. The development of these are responsible for a kind of quality that has simply last its original means concerning quality concepts has made that the quality abandons the simple way of products and processes control, in order to develop a systemic approach of quality management in the whole organization. The objective of this paper is to present a proposal of a quality systemic management model oriented by taking into account the firm's customer wants and attributes characteristics . In For the development of this work it is utilized the Axiomatic Design approach is used, which is established in function of axioms, corollaries and theorems, with the objective of to improve "good practices of design" in the construction of the quality systemic management model.

  3. Methodology for Selecting Best Management Practices Integrating Multiple Stakeholders and Criteria. Part 2: Case Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio Carvallo Aceves

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The selection of stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs for mitigating the effects of urbanization on the hydrological cycle could be a complex process due to conflicting stakeholder views, and varying levels of performance of BMPs across a range of criteria (runoff reduction, erosion control, etc.. Part 1 of this article proposed a methodology based on the application of multi-criteria decision aid (MCDA methods, which was tested here on a residential stormwater network in the Montreal area. The case study considered green roofs, rain gardens, rain barrels and pervious pavement over a range of economic, social, and water quality and quantity criteria by applying 4 MCDA methods under three different stakeholder views. The results indicated Elimination et Choix Traduisant la Réalité (ELECTRE III to be the most appropriate method for the methodology, presenting flexibility concerning threshold values, criteria weights, and showing shared top choices across stakeholders (rain gardens, and rain gardens in combination with pervious pavement. The methodology shows potential for more formal applications and research opportunities. Future work may lie in the inclusion of multiple objective optimization, better stakeholder engagement, estimation of economic benefits, water quality modeling, long-term hydrological simulations, and estimating real BMP pollutant removal rates.

  4. A methodological study to compare survey-based and observation-based evaluations of organisational and safety cultures and then compare both approaches with markers of the quality of care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeth, D; Sandall, J; Allan, T; Warburton, F; Berridge, E J; Mackintosh, N; Rogers, M; Abbott, S

    2012-05-01

    Patient safety concerns have focused attention on organisational and safety cultures, in turn directing attention to the measurement of organisational and safety climates. First, to compare levels of agreement between survey- and observation-based measures of organisational and safety climates/cultures and to compare both measures with criterion-based audits of the quality of care, using evidence-based markers drawn from national care standards relating to six common clinical conditions. (This required development of an observation-based instrument.) Second, to examine whether observation-based evaluations could replace or augment survey measurements to mitigate concerns about declining response rates and increasing social desirability bias. Third, to examine mediating factors in safety and organisational climate scores. The study had three strands: (A) a postal questionnaire survey to elicit staff perceptions of organisational and safety climates, using six prevalidated scales; (B) semistructured non-participant observation of clinical teams; and (C) a retrospective criterion-based audit carried out by non-clinical auditors to minimise hindsight bias. Standardised summary scores were created for each strand, and pairs of measurements were compared (strand A with strand B, strand A with strand C, and strand B with strand C) using Bland-Altman plots to evaluate agreement. Correlations were also examined. Multilevel modelling of Strand A scores explored mediating factors. Eight emergency departments and eight maternity units in England, UK. None. Examination of feasibility, correlation and agreement. Strand A: the overall response rate was 27.6%, whereas site-specific rates ranged from 9% to 47%. We identified more mediating factors than previous studies; variable response rates had little effect on the results. Organisational and safety climate scores were strongly correlated (r = 0.845) and exhibited good agreement [standard deviation (SD) differences 0.449; 14 (88

  5. Joint route planning under varying market conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cruijssen, Frans; Bräysy, Olli; Dullaert, Wout; Fleuren, Hein; Salomon, Marc

    2007-01-01

    Purpose - To provide empirical evidence on the level of savings that can be attained by joint route planning and how these savings depend on specific market characteristics. Design/methodology/approach - Joint route planning is a measure that companies can take to decrease the costs of their

  6. Methodology of formal software evaluation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tuszynski, J.

    1998-01-01

    Sydkraft AB, the major Swedish utility, owner of ca 6000 MW el installed in nuclear (NPP Barsebaeck and NPP Oskarshamn), fossil fuel and hydro Power Plants is facing modernization of the control systems of the plants. Standards applicable require structured, formal methods for implementation of the control functions in the modem, real time software systems. This presentation introduces implementation methodology as discussed presently at the Sydkraft organisation. The approach suggested is based upon the process of co-operation of three parties taking part in the implementation; owner of the plant, vendor and Quality Assurance (QA) organisation. QA will be based on tools for formal software validation and on systematic gathering by the owner of validated and proved-by-operation control modules for the concern-wide utilisation. (author)

  7. Computer Network Operations Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-03-01

    means of their computer information systems. Disrupt - This type of attack focuses on disrupting as “attackers might surreptitiously reprogram enemy...by reprogramming the computers that control distribution within the power grid. A disruption attack introduces disorder and inhibits the effective...between commanders. The use of methodologies is widespread and done subconsciously to assist individuals in decision making. The processes that

  8. SCI Hazard Report Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Michael S.

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the methodology in creating a Source Control Item (SCI) Hazard Report (HR). The SCI HR provides a system safety risk assessment for the following Ares I Upper Stage Production Contract (USPC) components (1) Pyro Separation Systems (2) Main Propulsion System (3) Reaction and Roll Control Systems (4) Thrust Vector Control System and (5) Ullage Settling Motor System components.

  9. A Functional HAZOP Methodology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liin, Netta; Lind, Morten; Jensen, Niels

    2010-01-01

    A HAZOP methodology is presented where a functional plant model assists in a goal oriented decomposition of the plant purpose into the means of achieving the purpose. This approach leads to nodes with simple functions from which the selection of process and deviation variables follow directly...

  10. Methodological Advances in Dea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L. Cherchye (Laurens); G.T. Post (Thierry)

    2001-01-01

    textabstractWe survey the methodological advances in DEA over the last 25 years and discuss the necessary conditions for a sound empirical application. We hope this survey will contribute to the further dissemination of DEA, the knowledge of its relative strengths and weaknesses, and the tools

  11. NUSAM Methodology for Assessment.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leach, Janice [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Snell, Mark K. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2016-07-01

    This document provides a methodology for the performance-based assessment of security systems designed for the protection of nuclear and radiological materials and the processes that produce and/or involve them. It is intended for use with both relatively simple installations and with highly regulated complex sites with demanding security requirements.

  12. MIRD methodology. Part 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rojo, Ana M.

    2004-01-01

    This lecture develops the MIRD (Medical Internal Radiation Dose) methodology for the evaluation of the internal dose due to the administration of radiopharmaceuticals. In this first part, the basic concepts and the main equations are presented. The ICRP Dosimetric System is also explained. (author)

  13. Response Surface Methodology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleijnen, Jack P.C.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract: This chapter first summarizes Response Surface Methodology (RSM), which started with Box and Wilson’s article in 1951 on RSM for real, non-simulated systems. RSM is a stepwise heuristic that uses first-order polynomials to approximate the response surface locally. An estimated polynomial

  14. MIRD methodology. Part 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez Parada, Ines

    2004-01-01

    This paper develops the MIRD (Medical Internal Radiation Dose) methodology for the evaluation of the internal dose due to the administration of radiopharmaceuticals. In this second part, different methods for the calculation of the accumulated activity are presented, together with the effective half life definition. Different forms of Retention Activity curves are also shown. (author)

  15. Avaliação do efeito de variáveis meteorológicas na qualidade industrial e no rendimento de grãos de trigo pelo emprego de análise de componentes principais Evaluation of the effect of climate variables on industrial wheat quality and on grain yield using principal component analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliana Maria Guarienti

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available A qualidade industrial de trigo, além de ser afetada pelo genótipo, também é influenciada por fatores ambientes, como as condições meteorológicas prevalecentes durante a permanência da cultura na lavoura. Este trabalho teve por objetivo verificar a influência de variáveis meteorológicas, bem como do déficit e do excesso hídrico do solo, no peso do hectolitro (PH, no peso de mil grãos (PMG, na extração experimental de farinha (EXT, na força geral de glúten (W, na relação P/L (P/L, na microssedimentação com dodecil sulfato de sódio (SDS e no número de queda (NQ. Foram usados dados de experimentos com trigo EMBRAPA 16, conduzidos nos anos de 1990 a 1998, em sete locais do Rio Grande do Sul e em quatro locais de Santa Catarina. A análise estatística realizada foi de componentes principais. Verificou-se que: a a precipitação pluvial, a umidade relativa do ar e o excesso hídrico do solo influenciaram negativamente o PH, o PMG, o NQ, a P/L e o rendimento de grãos. O W, a EXT e a SDS foram afetados positiva e negativamente por essas variáveis, dependendo do período de avaliação estudado; b a temperatura mínima influenciou positivamente a EXT, o W e a SDS. Para as demais variáveis, quando ocorreu influência da temperatura mínima, esta foi negativa; c a temperatura média associou-se negativamente com o PH, com o PMG, com o NQ e com o rendimento de grãos e positivamente com a EXT e com o W. Para a P/L e para a SDS, a temperatura média afetou tanto positiva quanto negativamente; d a temperatura máxima correlacionou-se negativamente com o rendimento de grãos e positivamente com a EXT. O W, a SDS e a P/L apresentaram períodos de correlação positivos e negativos com a temperatura máxima; e e a radiação solar global influenciou positivamente todas as características estudadas, exceto a SDS.Wheat baking quality, besides being affected by genotype, is also influenced by environmental factors, such as climate

  16. Núcleos de desarrollo pedagógico endógenos: su impacto en la calidad del trabajo metodológico en las Sedes Universitarias Municipales de Ciencias Médicas de Pinar del Río Nucleus of endogenous pedagogical development: its impact in the quality of methodological work in Medical Municipal University Venues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo Luís Herrera Miranda

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Las insuficiencias en el trabajo metodológico en las Sedes Universitarias Municipales de Ciencias Médicas, han incidido negativamente en la calidad del proceso docente educativo. Problema: ¿cómo contribuir a fortalecer el trabajo metodológico en las SUM, que permita perfeccionar el proceso formativo y la calidad de los futuros profesionales de la salud? Objetivo: evaluar el impacto de los Núcleos de Desarrollo Pedagógico Endógenos, en el fortalecimiento del trabajo metodológico en las Sedes Universitarias Municipales de Ciencias Médicas de Pinar del Río. Resultados: se logró aumentar el número y la calidad de cursos de superación pedagógica y talleres en todas las Sedes Universitarias Municipales de Ciencias Médicas, lo que tributó al fortalecimiento del trabajo del tutor, así como el mejor uso de los medios de enseñanza y el perfeccionamiento de las nuevas formas de organización de la enseñanza. Aumentó el número de proyectos, resultados de las investigaciones pedagógicas y la calidad de las actividades del sistema de trabajo metodológico, al ser impartidas por los miembros de estos núcleos, así como los controles a actividades docentes, contribuyendo a una mayor calidad de los ejercicios de promoción de categoría docente. Conclusiones: la introducción de esta nueva estructura organizativa para el desarrollo del trabajo metodológico en las Sedes Universitarias Municipales de Ciencias Médicas en Pinar del Río, ha permitido perfeccionar el trabajo metodológico y propiciado un clima institucional favorable a este trabajo, con lo que se ha logrado hacer más sistémico e integrador el trabajo metodológico en los niveles de la carrera, disciplina y año académico.Insufficiencies of the methodological work in Medical Municipal University Venues has negatively influenced on the quality of teaching-learning process. Problem: how to contribute to the reinforcement of methodological work in Medical Municipal University

  17. Development of varying magnetic field analysis technology caused by vibration of MRI apparatus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Imamura, Yukinobu; Motoshiromizu, Hirofumi; Abe, Mitsushi; Watanabe, Hiroyuki; Takeuchi, Hiroyuki

    2015-01-01

    In Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) apparatus, pulse current is energized to the gradient coils in a strong static magnetic field generated by the static magnetic poles. Since electromagnetic force (i.e. Lorentz force) is generated in the gradient coils, the MRI magnet system vibrates. On the other hand, vibration of the MRI magnet system is affected by electromagnetic force caused by static magnetic poles vibration. As the vibration of MRI magnet system causes magnetic field disturbance (so-called 'error magnetic field') and affect image quality, it is important to evaluate them in the design process. In this study, a varying magnetic field evaluation method for MRI magnet system was developed. Vibration and electromagnetic force is considered in the weak coupling formation using the Modal Magnetic Dumping (MMD) method. In the eddy current analysis by vibration, the displacement was considered in the magnetic field changes in the finite elements. Error magnetic field caused by equipment vibration was obtained by superposition of the static magnetic field fluctuation and the eddy current magnetic field. Then open type MRI magnet was evaluated by the proposed methodology. A a result, vibration of static magnet poles were suppressed by magnetic dumping at 50 Hz or less and eddy current magnetic field was dominant at 50 Hz or more. (author)

  18. Online Public Access Catalog User Studies: A Review of Research Methodologies, March 1986-November 1989.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seymour, Sharon

    1991-01-01

    Review of research methodologies used in studies of online public access catalog (OPAC) users finds that a variety of research methodologies--e.g., surveys, transaction log analysis, interviews--have been used with varying degrees of expertise. It is concluded that poor research methodology resulting from limited training and resources limits the…

  19. Varying constants, black holes, and quantum gravity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carlip, S.

    2003-01-01

    Tentative observations and theoretical considerations have recently led to renewed interest in models of fundamental physics in which certain 'constants' vary in time. Assuming fixed black hole mass and the standard form of the Bekenstein-Hawking entropy, Davies, Davis and Lineweaver have argued that the laws of black hole thermodynamics disfavor models in which the fundamental electric charge e changes. I show that with these assumptions, similar considerations severely constrain 'varying speed of light' models, unless we are prepared to abandon cherished assumptions about quantum gravity. Relaxation of these assumptions permits sensible theories of quantum gravity with ''varying constants,'' but also eliminates the thermodynamic constraints, though the black hole mass spectrum may still provide some restrictions on the range of allowable models

  20. Soft Systems Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Checkland, Peter; Poulter, John

    Soft systems methodology (SSM) is an approach for tackling problematical, messy situations of all kinds. It is an action-oriented process of inquiry into problematic situations in which users learn their way from finding out about the situation, to taking action to improve it. The learning emerges via an organised process in which the situation is explored using a set of models of purposeful action (each built to encapsulate a single worldview) as intellectual devices, or tools, to inform and structure discussion about a situation and how it might be improved. This paper, written by the original developer Peter Checkland and practitioner John Poulter, gives a clear and concise account of the approach that covers SSM's specific techniques, the learning cycle process of the methodology and the craft skills which practitioners develop. This concise but theoretically robust account nevertheless includes the fundamental concepts, techniques, core tenets described through a wide range of settings.

  1. Web survey methodology

    CERN Document Server

    Callegaro, Mario; Vehovar, Asja

    2015-01-01

    Web Survey Methodology guides the reader through the past fifteen years of research in web survey methodology. It both provides practical guidance on the latest techniques for collecting valid and reliable data and offers a comprehensive overview of research issues. Core topics from preparation to questionnaire design, recruitment testing to analysis and survey software are all covered in a systematic and insightful way. The reader will be exposed to key concepts and key findings in the literature, covering measurement, non-response, adjustments, paradata, and cost issues. The book also discusses the hottest research topics in survey research today, such as internet panels, virtual interviewing, mobile surveys and the integration with passive measurements, e-social sciences, mixed modes and business intelligence. The book is intended for students, practitioners, and researchers in fields such as survey and market research, psychological research, official statistics and customer satisfaction research.

  2. Smoothly varying in-plane stiffness heterogeneity evaluated under uniaxial tensile stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    J.M. Considine; F. Pierron; K.T. Turner; P. Lava; X. Tang

    2017-01-01

    Identification of spatially varying stiffness is a challenging, but important, research topic in the mechanics of materials and can provide the necessary information for material suitability, damage, and process control, especially for high‐value applications. One homogeneous and 3 heterogeneous virtual field method (VFM) formulations were used to create a methodology...

  3. Health economic evaluation: important principles and methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudmik, Luke; Drummond, Michael

    2013-06-01

    To discuss health economic evaluation and improve the understanding of common methodology. This article discusses the methodology for the following types of economic evaluations: cost-minimization, cost-effectiveness, cost-utility, cost-benefit, and economic modeling. Topics include health-state utility measures, the quality-adjusted life year (QALY), uncertainty analysis, discounting, decision tree analysis, and Markov modeling. Economic evaluation is the comparative analysis of alternative courses of action in terms of both their costs and consequences. With increasing health care expenditure and limited resources, it is important for physicians to consider the economic impact of their interventions. Understanding common methodology involved in health economic evaluation will improve critical appraisal of the literature and optimize future economic evaluations. Copyright © 2012 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.

  4. Researching Lean: Methodological implications of loose definitions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brännmark, Mikael; Langstrand, Jostein; Johansson, Stina

    2012-01-01

    practices seem to overlap with other popular management concepts, such as High Performance Work Systems, World Class Manufacturing and Total Quality Management. This confusion, combined with different methodological and theoretical traditions, has led to much debate and contradictory conclusions regarding...... Lean. The purpose of the paper is to illustrate some key methodological issues that need to be considered in future Lean research to allow increased understanding of Lean effects for different stakeholders, primarily meaning the customer, employer and employees. Design/methodology/approach – The paper...... on the case studies, we suggest that future investigations describe the Lean interventions in more detail. General descriptions or analogies, e.g. ‘learning organizations’, presumably increase the present confusion regarding Lean impact on different stakeholders. The case studies also illustrate...

  5. Steganography: LSB Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-02

    of LSB steganography in grayscale and color images . In J. Dittmann, K. Nahrstedt, and P. Wohlmacher, editors, Proceedings of the ACM, Special...Fridrich, M. Gojan and R. Du paper titled “Reliable detection of LSB steganography in grayscale and color images ”. From a general perspective Figure 2...REPORT Steganography : LSB Methodology (Progress Report) 14. ABSTRACT 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF: In computer science, steganography is the science

  6. Methodology of a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linares-Espinós, E; Hernández, V; Domínguez-Escrig, J L; Fernández-Pello, S; Hevia, V; Mayor, J; Padilla-Fernández, B; Ribal, M J

    2018-05-03

    The objective of evidence-based medicine is to employ the best scientific information available to apply to clinical practice. Understanding and interpreting the scientific evidence involves understanding the available levels of evidence, where systematic reviews and meta-analyses of clinical trials are at the top of the levels-of-evidence pyramid. The review process should be well developed and planned to reduce biases and eliminate irrelevant and low-quality studies. The steps for implementing a systematic review include (i) correctly formulating the clinical question to answer (PICO), (ii) developing a protocol (inclusion and exclusion criteria), (iii) performing a detailed and broad literature search and (iv) screening the abstracts of the studies identified in the search and subsequently of the selected complete texts (PRISMA). Once the studies have been selected, we need to (v) extract the necessary data into a form designed in the protocol to summarise the included studies, (vi) assess the biases of each study, identifying the quality of the available evidence, and (vii) develop tables and text that synthesise the evidence. A systematic review involves a critical and reproducible summary of the results of the available publications on a particular topic or clinical question. To improve scientific writing, the methodology is shown in a structured manner to implement a systematic review. Copyright © 2018 AEU. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  7. Soil Radiological Characterisation Methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Attiogbe, Julien; Aubonnet, Emilie; De Maquille, Laurence; De Moura, Patrick; Desnoyers, Yvon; Dubot, Didier; Feret, Bruno; Fichet, Pascal; Granier, Guy; Iooss, Bertrand; Nokhamzon, Jean-Guy; Ollivier Dehaye, Catherine; Pillette-Cousin, Lucien; Savary, Alain

    2014-12-01

    This report presents the general methodology and best practice approaches which combine proven existing techniques for sampling and characterisation to assess the contamination of soils prior to remediation. It is based on feedback of projects conducted by main French nuclear stakeholders involved in the field of remediation and dismantling (EDF, CEA, AREVA and IRSN). The application of this methodology will enable the project managers to obtain the elements necessary for the drawing up of files associated with remediation operations, as required by the regulatory authorities. It is applicable to each of the steps necessary for the piloting of remediation work-sites, depending on the objectives targeted (release into the public domain, re-use, etc.). The main part describes the applied statistical methodology with the exploratory analysis and variogram data, identification of singular points and their location. The results obtained permit assessment of a mapping to identify the contaminated surface and subsurface areas. It stakes the way for radiological site characterisation since the initial investigations from historical and functional analysis to check that the remediation objectives have been met. It follows an example application from the feedback of the remediation of a contaminated site on the Fontenay aux Roses facility. It is supplemented by a glossary of main terms used in the field from different publications or international standards. This technical report is a support of the ISO Standard ISO ISO/TC 85/SC 5 N 18557 'Sampling and characterisation principles for soils, buildings and infrastructures contaminated by radionuclides for remediation purposes'. (authors) [fr

  8. METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING TEACHING DEVELOPING-TASKS OF DEPTH OF THOUGHT WHICH APPRECIATE THE QUALITY OF THE GRADUATE PROFFESIONALS OF AGRONOMY / METODOLOGÍA PARA ELABORAR TAREAS DOCENTES DESARROLLADORAS DE LA PROFUNDIDAD DEL PENSAMIENTO QUE PROPICIE LA CALIDAD DEL EGRESO DE PROFESIONALES DE LA AGRONOMÍA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yamilka Sosa Oliva

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available This work has as a general objective to contribute to guarantee the quality of the enrollment of the professionals of junior level in the specialty of Agronomy, from the direction of the process of thinking. As a result, a methodology is offered for the elaboration of teaching tasks which favor the development of thought from the work done to skills. This is a result of a Project of investigation: an alternative for the direction of the teaching-learning process in the Technical and Professional Level of Teaching and this constitute a pre-liminary result of a thesis in option to get a PhD.

  9. Interest and limits of the six sigma methodology in medical laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherrer, Florian; Bouilloux, Jean-Pierre; Calendini, Ors'Anton; Chamard, Didier; Cornu, François

    2017-02-01

    The mandatory accreditation of clinical laboratories in France provides an incentive to develop real tools to measure performance management methods and to optimize the management of internal quality controls. Six sigma methodology is an approach commonly applied to software quality management and discussed in numerous publications. This paper discusses the primary factors that influence the sigma index (the choice of the total allowable error, the approach used to address bias) and compares the performance of different analyzers on the basis of the sigma index. Six sigma strategy can be applied to the policy management of internal quality control in a laboratory and demonstrates through a comparison of four analyzers that there is no single superior analyzer in clinical chemistry. Similar sigma results are obtained using approaches toward bias based on the EQAS or the IQC. The main difficulty in using the six sigma methodology lies in the absence of official guidelines for the definition of the total error acceptable. Despite this drawback, our comparison study suggests that difficulties with defined analytes do not vary with the analyzer used.

  10. "Mina olin siin" esilinastub Karlovy Varys

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    2008-01-01

    Karlovy Vary filmifestivalil esilinastub Rene Vilbre noortefilm "Mina olin siin", mille aluseks on Sass Henno romaan "Mina olin siin. Esimene arest", stsenaariumi kirjutas Ilmar Raag. Film võistleb võistlusprogrammis "East of the West". Esitlema sõidavad R. Vilbre, R. Sildos, R. Kaljujärv, T. Tuisk

  11. Tracking time-varying coefficient-functions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Henrik Aalborg; Nielsen, Torben Skov; Joensen, Alfred K.

    2000-01-01

    is a combination of recursive least squares with exponential forgetting and local polynomial regression. It is argued, that it is appropriate to let the forgetting factor vary with the value of the external signal which is the argument of the coefficient functions. Some of the key properties of the modified method...... are studied by simulation...

  12. Filmihullu eluvesi voolab Karlovy Varys / Margit Tõnson

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Tõnson, Margit, 1978-

    2010-01-01

    Karlovy Vary rahvusvahelisest filmifestivalist. Filmidest "Mr. Nobody" (rež. Jaco Van Dormaeli), "Kasside ema Teresa" (rež. Pawel Sala) ja "The Arbor" (rež. Clio Barnardi). Nimekiri võitnud töödest ja viimastel aastatel festivalil näidatud Eesti mängufilmidest

  13. Ellipsometry with randomly varying polarization states

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liu, F.; Lee, C. J.; Chen, J. Q.; E. Louis,; van der Slot, P. J. M.; Boller, K. J.; F. Bijkerk,

    2012-01-01

    We show that, under the right conditions, one can make highly accurate polarization-based measurements without knowing the absolute polarization state of the probing light field. It is shown that light, passed through a randomly varying birefringent material has a well-defined orbit on the Poincar

  14. Õunpuu Karlovy Varys edukas

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    2010-01-01

    45. Karlovy Vary filmifestivali võistlusprogrammis "East of the West" märgiti ära Veiko Õunpuu film "Püha Tõnu kiusamine". Peaauhind läks rumeenlase Cristi Puiu filmile "Aurora". Grand prix´sai Augustĺ Vila film "La mosquitera". Teisi preemiasaajaid

  15. Assessing primary care data quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Yvonne Mei Fong; Yusof, Maryati; Sivasampu, Sheamini

    2018-04-16

    Purpose The purpose of this paper is to assess National Medical Care Survey data quality. Design/methodology/approach Data completeness and representativeness were computed for all observations while other data quality measures were assessed using a 10 per cent sample from the National Medical Care Survey database; i.e., 12,569 primary care records from 189 public and private practices were included in the analysis. Findings Data field completion ranged from 69 to 100 per cent. Error rates for data transfer from paper to web-based application varied between 0.5 and 6.1 per cent. Error rates arising from diagnosis and clinical process coding were higher than medication coding. Data fields that involved free text entry were more prone to errors than those involving selection from menus. The authors found that completeness, accuracy, coding reliability and representativeness were generally good, while data timeliness needs to be improved. Research limitations/implications Only data entered into a web-based application were examined. Data omissions and errors in the original questionnaires were not covered. Practical implications Results from this study provided informative and practicable approaches to improve primary health care data completeness and accuracy especially in developing nations where resources are limited. Originality/value Primary care data quality studies in developing nations are limited. Understanding errors and missing data enables researchers and health service administrators to prevent quality-related problems in primary care data.

  16. Development of cookies made with cocoyam, fermented sorghum and germinated pigeon pea flour blends using response surface methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okpala, Laura C; Okoli, Eric C

    2014-10-01

    Cookies were produced from blends of cocoyam, fermented sorghum and germinated pigeon pea flours. The study was carried out to evaluate the effects of varying the proportions of these components on the sensory and protein quality of the cookies. The sensory attributes studied were colour, taste, texture, crispness and general acceptability while the protein quality indices were biological value (BV) and net protein utilization (NPU). Mixture response surface methodology was used to model the sensory and protein quality with single, binary and ternary combinations of germinated pigeon pea, fermented sorghum and cocoyam flours. Results showed that BV and NPU of most of the cookies were above minimum acceptable levels. With the exception of cookies containing high levels of pigeon pea flour, cookies had acceptable sensory scores. Increase in pigeon pea flour resulted in increase in the BV and NPU. Regression equations suggested that the ternary blends produced the highest increase in all the sensory attributes (with the exception of colour).

  17. Methodology applied to develop the DHIE: applied methodology

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Herselman, Marlien

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available This section will address the methodology that was applied to develop the South African Digital Health Innovation Ecosystem (DHIE). Each chapter under Section B represents a specific phase in the methodology....

  18. Methodology for developing new test methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. Korobko

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The paper describes the methodology for developing new test methods and forming solutions for the development of new test methods. The basis of the methodology for developing new test methods is the individual elements of the system and process approaches. They contribute to the development of an effective research strategy for the object, the study of interrelations, the synthesis of an adequate model of the test method. The effectiveness of the developed test method is determined by the correct choice of the set of concepts, their interrelations and mutual influence. This allows you to solve the tasks assigned to achieve the goal. The methodology is based on the use of fuzzy cognitive maps. The question of the choice of the method on the basis of which the model for the formation of solutions is based is considered. The methodology provides for recording a model for a new test method in the form of a finite set of objects. These objects are significant for the test method characteristics. Then a causal relationship is established between the objects. Further, the values of fitness indicators and the observability of the method and metrological tolerance for the indicator are established. The work is aimed at the overall goal of ensuring the quality of tests by improving the methodology for developing the test method.

  19. [Planning and application of a valutation methodology in UNI EN ISO 9001:2000 quality system, for the analysis satisfaction level of third-year student University of Bologna, Bachelor of Nursing Course, CRI School of Nursing formative section].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardi, M G; Scalorbi, Sandra; Burrai, Francesco

    2007-01-01

    The quality of nursing assistance is closely related to the quality of training. In the certification UNI EN ISO 9001:2000 in 2004 of the Bologna nursing school regarding Planning and performance of theoretical-practical nursing training a continual improvement of the product/service is implicit. A method was therefore devised to evaluate the degree of satisfaction in third-year nursing students in Bologna which demonstrated a medium/high level of satisfaction regarding all teaching-related procedures. By monitoring satisfaction levels , it is possible to identify any critical areas and to implement improvement where needed.

  20. Vending machine assessment methodology. A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthews, Melissa A; Horacek, Tanya M

    2015-07-01

    The nutritional quality of food and beverage products sold in vending machines has been implicated as a contributing factor to the development of an obesogenic food environment. How comprehensive, reliable, and valid are the current assessment tools for vending machines to support or refute these claims? A systematic review was conducted to summarize, compare, and evaluate the current methodologies and available tools for vending machine assessment. A total of 24 relevant research studies published between 1981 and 2013 met inclusion criteria for this review. The methodological variables reviewed in this study include assessment tool type, study location, machine accessibility, product availability, healthfulness criteria, portion size, price, product promotion, and quality of scientific practice. There were wide variations in the depth of the assessment methodologies and product healthfulness criteria utilized among the reviewed studies. Of the reviewed studies, 39% evaluated machine accessibility, 91% evaluated product availability, 96% established healthfulness criteria, 70% evaluated portion size, 48% evaluated price, 52% evaluated product promotion, and 22% evaluated the quality of scientific practice. Of all reviewed articles, 87% reached conclusions that provided insight into the healthfulness of vended products and/or vending environment. Product healthfulness criteria and complexity for snack and beverage products was also found to be variable between the reviewed studies. These findings make it difficult to compare results between studies. A universal, valid, and reliable vending machine assessment tool that is comprehensive yet user-friendly is recommended. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Varied line-space gratings and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKinney, W.R.

    1991-01-01

    This paper presents a straightforward analytical and numerical method for the design of a specific type of varied line-space grating system. The mathematical development will assume plane or nearly-plane spherical gratings which are illuminated by convergent light, which covers many interesting cases for synchrotron radiation. The gratings discussed will have straight grooves whose spacing varies across the principal plane of the grating. Focal relationships and formulae for the optical grating-pole-to-exist-slit distance and grating radius previously presented by other authors will be derived with a symbolic algebra system. It is intended to provide the optical designer with the tools necessary to design such a system properly. Finally, some possible advantages and disadvantages for application to synchrotron to synchrotron radiation beamlines will be discussed

  2. The Thermal Collector With Varied Glass Covers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Luminosu, I.; Pop, N.

    2010-01-01

    The thermal collector with varied glass covers represents an innovation realized in order to build a collector able to reach the desired temperature by collecting the solar radiation from the smallest surface, with the highest efficiency. In the case of the thermal collector with variable cover glasses, the number of the glass plates covering the absorber increases together with the length of the circulation pipe for the working fluid. The thermal collector with varied glass covers compared to the conventional collector better meet user requirements because: for the same temperature increase, has the collecting area smaller; for the same collection area, realizes the highest temperature increase and has the highest efficiency. This works is addressed to researchers in the solar energy and to engineers responsible with air-conditioning systems design or industrial and agricultural products drying.

  3. Case Study Research Methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Widdowson

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Commenting on the lack of case studies published in modern psychotherapy publications, the author reviews the strengths of case study methodology and responds to common criticisms, before providing a summary of types of case studies including clinical, experimental and naturalistic. Suggestions are included for developing systematic case studies and brief descriptions are given of a range of research resources relating to outcome and process measures. Examples of a pragmatic case study design and a hermeneutic single-case efficacy design are given and the paper concludes with some ethical considerations and an exhortation to the TA community to engage more widely in case study research.

  4. Sample size methodology

    CERN Document Server

    Desu, M M

    2012-01-01

    One of the most important problems in designing an experiment or a survey is sample size determination and this book presents the currently available methodology. It includes both random sampling from standard probability distributions and from finite populations. Also discussed is sample size determination for estimating parameters in a Bayesian setting by considering the posterior distribution of the parameter and specifying the necessary requirements. The determination of the sample size is considered for ranking and selection problems as well as for the design of clinical trials. Appropria

  5. Geotechnical site assessment methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tunbridge, L.W.; Richards, L.R.

    1985-09-01

    The reports comprising this volume concern the research conducted on geotechnical site assessment methodology at the Carwynnen test mine in granites in Cornwall, with particular reference to the effect of structures imposed by discontinuities on the engineering behaviour of rock masses. The topics covered are: in-situ stress measurements using (a) the hydraulic fracturing method, or (b) the US Bureau of Mines deformation probe; scanline discontinuity survey - coding form and instructions, and data; applicability of geostatistical estimation methods to scalar rock properties; comments on in-situ stress at the Carwynnen test mine and the state of stress in the British Isles. (U.K.)

  6. Microphysics evolution and methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dionisio, J.S.

    1990-01-01

    A few general features of microscopics evolution and their relationship with microscopics methodology are briefly surveyed. Several pluri-disciplinary and interdisciplinary aspects of microscopics research are also discussed in the present scientific context. The need for an equilibrium between individual tendencies and collective constraints required by team work, already formulated thirty years ago by Frederic Joliot, is particularly stressed in the present conjuncture of Nuclear Research favouring very large team projects and discouraging individual initiatives. The increasing importance of the science of science (due to their multiple social, economical, ecological aspects) and the stronger competition between national and international tendencies of scientific (and technical) cooperation are also discussed. (author)

  7. MIRD methodology; Metodologia MIRD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rojo, Ana M [Autoridad Regulatoria Nuclear, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Gomez Parada, Ines [Sociedad Argentina de Radioproteccion, Buenos Aires (Argentina)

    2004-07-01

    The MIRD (Medical Internal Radiation Dose) system was established by the Society of Nuclear Medicine of USA in 1960 to assist the medical community in the estimation of the dose in organs and tissues due to the incorporation of radioactive materials. Since then, 'MIRD Dose Estimate Report' (from the 1 to 12) and 'Pamphlets', of great utility for the dose calculations, were published. The MIRD system was planned essentially for the calculation of doses received by the patients during nuclear medicine diagnostic procedures. The MIRD methodology for the absorbed doses calculations in different tissues is explained.

  8. Beam optimization: improving methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Quinteiro, Guillermo F.

    2004-01-01

    Different optimization techniques commonly used in biology and food technology allow a systematic and complete analysis of response functions. In spite of the great interest in medical and nuclear physics in the problem of optimizing mixed beams, little attention has been given to sophisticate mathematical tools. Indeed, many techniques are perfectly suited to the typical problem of beam optimization. This article is intended as a guide to the use of two methods, namely Response Surface Methodology and Simplex, that are expected to fasten the optimization process and, meanwhile give more insight into the relationships among the dependent variables controlling the response

  9. Methodology of site studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caries, J.C.; Hugon, J.; Grauby, A.

    1980-01-01

    This methodology consists in an essentially dynamic, estimated and follow-up analysis of the impact of discharges on all the environment compartments, whether natural or not, that play a part in the protection of man and his environment. It applies at two levels, to wit: the choice of site, or the detailed study of the site selected. Two examples of its application will be developed, namely: at the choice of site level in the case of marine sites, and of the detailed study level of the chosen site in that of a riverside site [fr

  10. Alternative pricing methodologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1991-01-01

    With the increased interest in competitive market forces and growing recognition of the deficiencies in current practices, FERC and others are exploring alternatives to embedded cost pricing. A number of these alternatives are discussed in this chapter. Marketplace pricing, discussed briefly here, is the subject of the next chapter. Obviously, the pricing formula may combine several of these methodologies. One utility of which the authors are aware is seeking a price equal to the sum of embedded costs, opportunity costs, line losses, value of service, FERC's percentage adder formula and a contract service charge

  11. Spatially varying dispersion to model breakthrough curves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guangquan

    2011-01-01

    Often the water flowing in a karst conduit is a combination of contaminated water entering at a sinkhole and cleaner water released from the limestone matrix. Transport processes in the conduit are controlled by advection, mixing (dilution and dispersion), and retention-release. In this article, a karst transport model considering advection, spatially varying dispersion, and dilution (from matrix seepage) is developed. Two approximate Green's functions are obtained using transformation of variables, respectively, for the initial-value problem and for the boundary-value problem. A numerical example illustrates that mixing associated with strong spatially varying conduit dispersion can cause strong skewness and long tailing in spring breakthrough curves. Comparison of the predicted breakthrough curve against that measured from a dye-tracing experiment between Ames Sink and Indian Spring, Northwest Florida, shows that the conduit dispersivity can be as large as 400 m. Such a large number is believed to imply strong solute interaction between the conduit and the matrix and/or multiple flow paths in a conduit network. It is concluded that Taylor dispersion is not dominant in transport in a karst conduit, and the complicated retention-release process between mobile- and immobile waters may be described by strong spatially varying conduit dispersion. Copyright © 2010 The Author(s). Journal compilation © 2010 National Ground Water Association.

  12. New varying speed of light theories

    CERN Document Server

    Magueijo, J

    2003-01-01

    We review recent work on the possibility of a varying speed of light (VSL). We start by discussing the physical meaning of a varying $c$, dispelling the myth that the constancy of $c$ is a matter of logical consistency. We then summarize the main VSL mechanisms proposed so far: hard breaking of Lorentz invariance; bimetric theories (where the speeds of gravity and light are not the same); locally Lorentz invariant VSL theories; theories exhibiting a color dependent speed of light; varying $c$ induced by extra dimensions (e.g. in the brane-world scenario); and field theories where VSL results from vacuum polarization or CPT violation. We show how VSL scenarios may solve the cosmological problems usually tackled by inflation, and also how they may produce a scale-invariant spectrum of Gaussian fluctuations, capable of explaining the WMAP data. We then review the connection between VSL and theories of quantum gravity, showing how ``doubly special'' relativity has emerged as a VSL effective model of quantum space...

  13. A new time-varying harmonic decomposition structure based on recursive hanning window

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martins, C.H.; Silva, L.R.M.; Duque, C.A.; Cerqueira, A.S.; Teixeira, E.C.; Ribeiro, P.F.

    2012-01-01

    Analysis of power quality phenomena under time-varying conditions has become an important subject as the complexity of the grid increases. As a consequence, several methods have been developed/applied also to study power quality parameters during transient conditions such as time-frequency methods.

  14. Anistropically varying conductivity in irreversible electroporation simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labarbera, Nicholas; Drapaca, Corina

    2017-11-01

    One recent area of cancer research is irreversible electroporation (IRE). Irreversible electroporation is a minimally invasive procedure where needle electrodes are inserted into the body to ablate tumor cells with electricity. The aim of this paper is to propose a mathematical model that incorporates a tissue's conductivity increasing more in the direction of the electrical field as this has been shown to occur in experiments. It was necessary to mathematically derive a valid form of the conductivity tensor such that it is dependent on the electrical field direction and can be easily implemented into numerical software. The derivation of a conductivity tensor that can take arbitrary functions for the conductivity in the directions tangent and normal to the electrical field is the main contribution of this paper. Numerical simulations were performed for isotropic-varying and anisotropic-varying conductivities to evaluate the importance of including the electrical field's direction in the formulation for conductivity. By starting from previously published experimental results, this paper derived a general formulation for an anistropic-varying tensor for implementation into irreversible electroporation modeling software. The anistropic-varying tensor formulation allows the conductivity to take into consideration both electrical field direction and magnitude, as opposed to previous published works that only took into account electrical field magnitude. The anisotropic formulation predicts roughly a five percent decrease in ablation size for the monopolar simulation and approximately a ten percent decrease in ablation size for the bipolar simulations. This is a positive result as previously reported results found the isotropic formulation to overpredict ablation size for both monopolar and bipolar simulations. Furthermore, it was also reported that the isotropic formulation overpredicts the ablation size more for the bipolar case than the monopolar case. Thus, our

  15. LOFT uncertainty-analysis methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lassahn, G.D.

    1983-01-01

    The methodology used for uncertainty analyses of measurements in the Loss-of-Fluid Test (LOFT) nuclear-reactor-safety research program is described and compared with other methodologies established for performing uncertainty analyses

  16. LOFT uncertainty-analysis methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lassahn, G.D.

    1983-01-01

    The methodology used for uncertainty analyses of measurements in the Loss-of-Fluid Test (LOFT) nuclear reactor safety research program is described and compared with other methodologies established for performing uncertainty analyses

  17. The fairness of the PPS reimbursement methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianfrancesco, F D

    1990-01-01

    In FY 1984 the Medicare program implemented a new method of reimbursing hospitals for inpatient services, the Prospective Payment System (PPS). Under this system, hospitals are paid a predetermined amount per Medicare discharge, which varies according to certain patient and hospital characteristics. This article investigates the presence of systematic biases and other potential imperfections in the PPS reimbursement methodology as revealed by its effects on Medicare operating ratios. The study covers the first three years of the PPS (approximately 1984-1986) and is based on hospital data from the Medicare cost reports and other related sources. Regression techniques were applied to these data to determine how Medicare operating ratios were affected by specific aspects of the reimbursement methodology. Several possible imbalances were detected. The potential undercompensation relating to these can be harmful to certain classes of hospitals and to the Medicare populations that they serve. PMID:2109738

  18. RHIC Data Correlation Methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Michnoff, R.; D'Ottavio, T.; Hoff, L.; MacKay, W.; Satogata, T.

    1999-01-01

    A requirement for RHIC data plotting software and physics analysis is the correlation of data from all accelerator data gathering systems. Data correlation provides the capability for a user to request a plot of multiple data channels vs. time, and to make meaningful time-correlated data comparisons. The task of data correlation for RHIC requires careful consideration because data acquisition triggers are generated from various asynchronous sources including events from the RHIC Event Link, events from the two Beam Sync Links, and other unrelated clocks. In order to correlate data from asynchronous acquisition systems a common time reference is required. The RHIC data correlation methodology will allow all RHIC data to be converted to a common wall clock time, while still preserving native acquisition trigger information. A data correlation task force team, composed of the authors of this paper, has been formed to develop data correlation design details and provide guidelines for software developers. The overall data correlation methodology will be presented in this paper

  19. Intelligent systems engineering methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fouse, Scott

    1990-01-01

    An added challenge for the designers of large scale systems such as Space Station Freedom is the appropriate incorporation of intelligent system technology (artificial intelligence, expert systems, knowledge-based systems, etc.) into their requirements and design. This presentation will describe a view of systems engineering which successfully addresses several aspects of this complex problem: design of large scale systems, design with requirements that are so complex they only completely unfold during the development of a baseline system and even then continue to evolve throughout the system's life cycle, design that involves the incorporation of new technologies, and design and development that takes place with many players in a distributed manner yet can be easily integrated to meet a single view of the requirements. The first generation of this methodology was developed and evolved jointly by ISX and the Lockheed Aeronautical Systems Company over the past five years on the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency/Air Force Pilot's Associate Program, one of the largest, most complex, and most successful intelligent systems constructed to date. As the methodology has evolved it has also been applied successfully to a number of other projects. Some of the lessons learned from this experience may be applicable to Freedom.

  20. SMART performance analysis methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lim, H. S.; Kim, H. C.; Lee, D. J.

    2001-04-01

    To ensure the required and desired operation over the plant lifetime, the performance analysis for the SMART NSSS design is done by means of the specified analysis methodologies for the performance related design basis events(PRDBE). The PRDBE is an occurrence(event) that shall be accommodated in the design of the plant and whose consequence would be no more severe than normal service effects of the plant equipment. The performance analysis methodology which systematizes the methods and procedures to analyze the PRDBEs is as follows. Based on the operation mode suitable to the characteristics of the SMART NSSS, the corresponding PRDBEs and allowable range of process parameters for these events are deduced. With the developed control logic for each operation mode, the system thermalhydraulics are analyzed for the chosen PRDBEs using the system analysis code. Particularly, because of different system characteristics of SMART from the existing commercial nuclear power plants, the operation mode, PRDBEs, control logic, and analysis code should be consistent with the SMART design. This report presents the categories of the PRDBEs chosen based on each operation mode and the transition among these and the acceptance criteria for each PRDBE. It also includes the analysis methods and procedures for each PRDBE and the concept of the control logic for each operation mode. Therefore this report in which the overall details for SMART performance analysis are specified based on the current SMART design, would be utilized as a guide for the detailed performance analysis