WorldWideScience

Sample records for rapid cost assessment

  1. Rapid Cost Assessment of Space Mission Concepts Through Application of Complexity-Based Cost Indices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Craig E.; Cutts, James; Balint, Tibor; Hall, James B.

    2008-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the development of a rapid cost assessment models for evaluation of exploration missions through the application of complexity based cost indices. In Fall of 2004, NASA began developing 13 documents, known as "strategic roadmaps," intended to outline a strategy for space exploration over the next 30 years. The Third Strategic Roadmap, The Strategic Roadmap for Solar System Exploration, focused on strategy for robotic exploration of the Solar System. Development of the Strategic Roadmap for Solar System Exploration led to the investigation of a large variety of missions. However, the necessity of planning around scientific inquiry and budgetary constraints made it necessary for the roadmap development team to evaluate potential missions not only for scientific return but also cost. Performing detailed cost studies for each of the large number of missions was impractical given the time constraints involved and lack of detailed mission studies; so a method of rapid cost assessment was developed by us to allow preliminary analysis. It has been noted that there is a strong correlation between complexity and cost and schedule of planetary missions. While these correlations were made after missions had been built and flown (successfully or otherwise), it seemed likely that a similar approach could provide at least some relative cost ranking. Cost estimation relationships (CERs) have been developed based on subsystem design choices. These CERs required more detailed information than available, forcing the team to adopt a more high level approach. Costing by analogy has been developed for small satellites, however, planetary exploration missions provide such varying spacecraft requirements that there is a lack of adequately comparable missions that can be used for analogy.

  2. Rapid Bioassessment and In Situ Bioassay: Cost Effective Tools for Environmental Impact Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wike, L.D.

    2002-08-23

    Environmental impact can be difficult to assess, especially at the ecosystem level. Any impact assessment methodology that can give cost effective and timely results is highly desirable. Rapid bioassessment (RBA) is cost effective and produces timely results. Several types of RBA have been used at the Savannah River Site (SRS) to assess stream conditions, including the Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) based on fish community characteristics, and various techniques using aquatic macroinvertebrate species diversity and abundance. In an attempt to broaden the applicability of the RBA concept, we have also begun to develop RBA techniques for seep-fed wetlands and terrestrial habitats. These techniques will focus on vertebrate and macroinvertebrate assemblages for seep-fed wetlands and arthropod assemblages for terrestrial habitats. In situ bioassay is another technique that could be used for rapid and economical assessment of the effects of anthropogenic disturbance. We propose the development of two methods of in situ bioassay that can address bioavailability of constituents of concern. The use of caged bioassay organisms can be applied to terrestrial systems such as capped or existing waste sites using the common house cricket. Another proposed bioassay could use a resident species, such as the imported red fire ant, which is found in disturbed habitats and open areas such as waste sites. Combining in situ techniques with RBA methodologies has the potential to provide a comprehensive assessment of chemical and physical impacts to a wide range of ecosystem types.

  3. Rapid Cost Assessment of Space Mission Concepts through Application of Complexity Indices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Craig; Cutts, James; Balint, Tibor; Hall, James B.

    2008-01-01

    In 2005, the Solar System Exploration Strategic Roadmap Conmrittee (chartered by NASA to develop the roadmap for Solar System Exploration Missions for the coming decades) found itself posed with the difficult problem of sorting through several mission concepts and determining their relative costs. While detailed mission studies are the normal approach to costing, neither the budget nor schedule allotted to the conmrittee could support such studies. Members of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) supporting the conmrittee were given the challenge of developing a semi-quantitative approach that could provide the relative costs of these missions, without requiring an in depth study of the missions. In response to this challenge, a rapid cost assessment methodology based on a set of mission cost/complexity indexes was developed. This methodology also underwent two separate validations, one comparing its results when applied to historical missions, and another comparing its estimates against those of veteran space mission managers. Remarkably good agreement was achieved, suggesting that this approach provides an effective early indication of space mission costs.

  4. A RAPID ASSESSMENT MODEL FOR UNDERSTANDING THE SOCIAL COST OF CARBON

    OpenAIRE

    STEPHEN C. NEWBOLD; CHARLES GRIFFITHS; CHRIS MOORE; ANN WOLVERTON; ELIZABETH KOPITS

    2013-01-01

    The "social cost of carbon" (SCC) is the present value of the stream of future damages from one additional unit of carbon emissions in a particular year. This paper develops a rapid assessment model for the SCC. The model includes the essential ingredients for calculating the SCC at the global scale and is designed to be transparent and easy to use and modify. Our goal is to provide a tool to help analysts and decision-makers quickly explore the implications of various modeling assumptions fo...

  5. FURTHER COMMENT ON "A RAPID ASSESSMENT MODEL FOR UNDERSTANDING THE SOCIAL COST OF CARBON"

    OpenAIRE

    STEPHEN C. NEWBOLD; CHARLES GRIFFITHS; CHRIS MOORE; ANN WOLVERTON; ELIZABETH KOPITS

    2014-01-01

    In this reply to the comment by Gerlagh, we confirm an error in our estimate of the certainty-equivalent social cost of carbon (SCC) reported in Newbold et al. (2013), and we discuss the underlying conceptual difficulties that arise in conducting a social welfare analysis when preferences are heterogeneous or uncertain. The certainty-equivalent SCC depends crucially on the reference level of per capita consumption used to normalize marginal utility across possible preference parameters, and o...

  6. Calculating the Social Costs of Carbon without knowing preferences : Comment on “A rapid assessment model for understanding the social cost of carbon”

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerlagh, R.

    The Social Costs of Carbon (SCC) equals the marginal welfare loss associated with one unit of emitted CO2, divided by the marginal welfare gain associated with one unit of consumption. In stochastic assessments, both the nominator and denominator can depend on uncertain parameters; specifically they

  7. Assessing the Potential of Low-Cost 3D Cameras for the Rapid Measurement of Plant Woody Structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles Nock

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Detailed 3D plant architectural data have numerous applications in plant science, but many existing approaches for 3D data collection are time-consuming and/or require costly equipment. Recently, there has been rapid growth in the availability of low-cost, 3D cameras and related open source software applications. 3D cameras may provide measurements of key components of plant architecture such as stem diameters and lengths, however, few tests of 3D cameras for the measurement of plant architecture have been conducted. Here, we measured Salix branch segments ranging from 2–13 mm in diameter with an Asus Xtion camera to quantify the limits and accuracy of branch diameter measurement with a 3D camera. By scanning at a variety of distances we also quantified the effect of scanning distance. In addition, we also test the sensitivity of the program KinFu for continuous 3D object scanning and modeling as well as other similar software to accurately record stem diameters and capture plant form (<3 m in height. Given its ability to accurately capture the diameter of branches >6 mm, Asus Xtion may provide a novel method for the collection of 3D data on the branching architecture of woody plants. Improvements in camera measurement accuracy and available software are likely to further improve the utility of 3D cameras for plant sciences in the future.

  8. CALCULATING THE SOCIAL COSTS OF CARBON WITHOUT KNOWING PREFERENCES COMMENT ON "A RAPID ASSESSMENT MODEL FOR UNDERSTANDING THE SOCIAL COST OF CARBON"

    OpenAIRE

    REYER GERLAGH

    2014-01-01

    The Social Costs of Carbon (SCC) equals the marginal welfare loss associated with one unit of emitted CO2, divided by the marginal welfare gain associated with one unit of consumption. In stochastic assessments, both the nominator and denominator can depend on uncertain parameters; specifically they depend on the (implicit) scaling of the welfare function with the parameters. I discuss some pitfalls when calculating the expected value or the certainty equivalent of the SCC, and show that a mi...

  9. Indicator development methodology for volunteer tourism in host communities: creating a low-cost, locally applicable, rapid assessment tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher A. Lupoli; Wayde C. Morse; Conner Bailey; John Schelhas

    2015-01-01

    Two prominent critiques of volunteer tourism are that it is a top-down imposed form of development treating host communities as passive recipients of international aid, and that the impacts of volunteer tourism in host communities are not systematically evaluated. To address this we identified a pre-existing participatory methodology for assessing community...

  10. Combining ASTER multispectral imagery analysis and support vector machines for rapid and cost-effective post-fire assessment: a case study from the Greek wildland fires of 2007

    OpenAIRE

    Petropoulos, G. P.; Knorr, W.; Scholze, M.; Boschetti, L.; Karantounias, G.

    2010-01-01

    Remote sensing is increasingly being used as a cost-effective and practical solution for the rapid evaluation of impacts from wildland fires. The present study investigates the use of the support vector machine (SVM) classification method with multispectral data from the Advanced Spectral Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) for obtaining a rapid and cost effective post-fire assessment in a Mediterranean setting. A further objective is to perform a detailed intercomparison of available ...

  11. Rapid Building Assessment Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-05-01

    22  Figure 12. Average kWh savings per gross square footage ( GSF ). ....................................... 22  iii LIST OF TABLES...Certification Program FTP File Transfer Protocol GIS Geographical Information Systems GSF gross square footage JCI Johnson Controls Energy...Average kWh savings per gross square footage ( GSF ). 23 6.0 PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT FirstFuel chose each Performance Objective with the major project

  12. Wyoming Basin Rapid Ecoregional Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Natasha B.; Melcher, Cynthia P.

    2015-08-28

    The Wyoming Basin Rapid Ecoregional Assessment was conducted in partnership with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The overall goals of the BLM Rapid Ecoregional Assessments (REAs) are to identify important ecosystems and wildlife habitats at broad spatial scales; identify where these resources are at risk from Change Agents, including development, wildfire, invasive species, disease and climate change; quantify cumulative effects of anthropogenic stressors; and assess current levels of risk to ecological resources across a range of spatial scales and jurisdictional boundaries by assessing all lands within an ecoregion. There are several components of the REAs. Management Questions, developed by the BLM and stakeholders for the ecoregion, identify the regionally significant information needed for addressing land-management responsibilities. Conservation Elements represent regionally significant species and ecological communities that are of management concern. Change Agents that currently affect or are likely to affect the condition of species and communities in the future are identified and assessed. REAs also identify areas that have high conservation potential that are referred to as “large intact areas.” At the ecoregion level, the ecological value of large intact areas is based on the assumption that because these areas have not been greatly altered by human activities (such as development), they are more likely to contain a variety of plant and animal communities and to be resilient and resistant to changes resulting from natural disturbances such as fire, insect outbreaks, and disease.

  13. Wyoming Basin Rapid Ecoregional Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Natasha B.; Means, Robert E.

    2013-01-01

    The overall goal of the Wyoming Basin Rapid Ecoregional Assessment (REA) is to provide information that supports regional planning and analysis for the management of ecological resources. The REA provides an assessment of baseline ecological conditions, an evaluation of current risks from drivers of ecosystem change (including energy development, fire, and invasive species), and a predictive capacity for evaluating future risks (including climate change). Additionally, the REA may be used for identifying priority areas for conservation or restoration and for assessing cumulative effects of multiple land uses. The Wyoming Basin REA will address Management Questions developed by the Bureau of Land Management and other agency partners for 8 major biomes and 19 species or species assemblages. The maps developed for addressing Management Questions will be integrated into overall maps of landscape-level ecological values and risks. The maps can be used to address the goals of the REA at a number of levels: for individual species, species assemblages, aquatic and terrestrial systems, and for the entire ecoregion. This allows flexibility in how the products of the REA are compiled to inform planning and management actions across a broad range of spatial scales.

  14. Combining ASTER multispectral imagery analysis and support vector machines for rapid and cost-effective post-fire assessment: a case study from the Greek wildland fires of 2007

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. P. Petropoulos

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Remote sensing is increasingly being used as a cost-effective and practical solution for the rapid evaluation of impacts from wildland fires. The present study investigates the use of the support vector machine (SVM classification method with multispectral data from the Advanced Spectral Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER for obtaining a rapid and cost effective post-fire assessment in a Mediterranean setting. A further objective is to perform a detailed intercomparison of available burnt area datasets for one of the most catastrophic forest fire events that occurred near the Greek capital during the summer of 2007. For this purpose, two ASTER scenes were acquired, one before and one closely after the fire episode. Cartography of the burnt area was obtained by classifying each multi-band ASTER image into a number of discrete classes using the SVM classifier supported by land use/cover information from the CORINE 2000 land nomenclature. Overall verification of the derived thematic maps based on the classification statistics yielded results with a mean overall accuracy of 94.6% and a mean Kappa coefficient of 0.93. In addition, the burnt area estimate derived from the post-fire ASTER image was found to have an average difference of 9.63% from those reported by other operationally-offered burnt area datasets available for the test region.

  15. Rapid, cost-effective liquid chromatograghic method for the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    GRACE

    2006-07-03

    Jul 3, 2006 ... 1Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Quality Control, National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development, Abuja,. Nigeria. ... A rapid and cost effective method for the analysis of metronidazole in biological samples was ... effective HPLC method of assaying metronidazole both in.

  16. Colorado Plateau Rapid Ecoregion Assessment Data Catalog

    Data.gov (United States)

    Bureau of Land Management, Department of the Interior — Datasets used in the analysis of the Colorado Plateau (COP) Rapid Ecoregion Assessment (REA).They can be downloaded via a layer package (lpk, similar to a zip file...

  17. Systematic Review of the Cost and Cost-Effectiveness of Rapid Endovascular Therapy for Acute Ischemic Stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sevick, Laura K; Ghali, Sarah; Hill, Michael D; Danthurebandara, Vishva; Lorenzetti, Diane L; Noseworthy, Tom; Spackman, Eldon; Clement, Fiona

    2017-09-01

    Rapid endovascular therapy (EVT) is an emerging treatment option for acute ischemic stroke. Several economic evaluations have been published examining the cost-effectiveness of EVT, and many international bodies are currently making adoption decisions. The objective of this study was to establish the cost-effectiveness of EVT for ischemic stroke patients and to synthesize all the publicly available economic literature. A systematic review of the published literature was conducted to identify economic evaluations and cost analyses of EVT for acute ischemic stroke patients. Systematic review best practices were followed, and study quality was assessed. Four-hundred sixty-three articles were identified from electronic databases. After deduplication, abstract review, and full-text review, 17 studies were included. Seven of the studies were cost analyses, and 10 were cost-effectiveness studies. Generally, the cost analyses reported on the cost of the approach/procedure or the hospitalization costs associated with EVT. All of the cost-effectiveness studies reported a cost per quality-adjusted life year as the primary outcomes. Studies varied in regards to the costs considered, the perspective adopted, and the time horizon used. All the studies reported a cost per quality-adjusted life year of cost and cost-effectiveness of EVT. The cost analyses suggested that although EVT was associated with higher costs, it also resulted in improved patient outcomes. From the cost-effectiveness studies, EVT seems to be good value for money when a threshold of $50 000 per quality-adjusted life year gained is adopted. © 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.

  18. Southern Great Plains rapid ecoregional assessment : Pre-assessment report

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The purpose of the Pre-Assessment Report for the Southern Great Plains Rapid Ecoregional Assessment (REA) is to document the selection process for and final list of...

  19. Short Communication: Rapid Visual Assessment of Fish ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Short Communication: Rapid Visual Assessment of Fish Communities on Selected Reefs in the Bazaruto Archipelago. ... the Bazaruto reef types to provide a basis for their sound management and conservation. Keywords: Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique, ichthyofauna, fish surveys, underwater visual census, coral reefs.

  20. Rapid Hydraulic Assessment for Stream Restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-02-01

    governing equations are often used in conjunction with each other to define the flow characteristics of a given hydraulic phenomenon. The energy equation...Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. ERDC TN-EMRRP-SR-48 February 2016 Rapid Hydraulic Assessment for Stream Restoration...account the hydraulic conditions of the stream being restored. This is true whether the project involves a few feet of bank stabilization or several

  1. CFD Script for Rapid TPS Damage Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCloud, Peter

    2013-01-01

    This grid generation script creates unstructured CFD grids for rapid thermal protection system (TPS) damage aeroheating assessments. The existing manual solution is cumbersome, open to errors, and slow. The invention takes a large-scale geometry grid and its large-scale CFD solution, and creates a unstructured patch grid that models the TPS damage. The flow field boundary condition for the patch grid is then interpolated from the large-scale CFD solution. It speeds up the generation of CFD grids and solutions in the modeling of TPS damages and their aeroheating assessment. This process was successfully utilized during STS-134.

  2. Rapid Assessment of Age-Related Differences in Standing Balance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias Kalisch

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available As life expectancy continues to rise, in the future there will be an increasing number of older people prone to falling. Accordingly, there is an urgent need for comprehensive testing of older individuals to collect data and to identify possible risk factors for falling. Here we use a low-cost force platform to rapidly assess deficits in balance under various conditions. We tested 21 healthy older adults and 24 young adults during static stance, unidirectional and rotational displacement of their centre of pressure (COP. We found an age-related increase in postural sway during quiet standing and a reduction of maximal COP displacement in unidirectional and rotational displacement tests. Our data show that even low-cost computerized assessment tools allow for the comprehensive testing of balance performance in older subjects.

  3. Wyoming Basin Rapid Ecoregional Assessment: Work Plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Natasha B.; Garman, Steven L.; Walters, Annika; Ray, Andrea; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Wesner, Jeff S.; O’Donnell, Michael S.; Sherrill, Kirk R.; Babel, Nils C.; Bowen, Zachary H.

    2013-01-01

    The overall goal of the Rapid Ecoregional Assessments (REAs) being conducted for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is to provide information that supports regional planning and analysis for the management of ecological resources. The REA provides an assessment of baseline ecological conditions, an evaluation of current risks from drivers of ecosystem change, and a predictive capacity for evaluating future risks. The REA also may be used for identifying priority areas for conservation or restoration and for assessing the cumulative effects of a variety of land uses. There are several components of the REAs. Management Questions, developed by the BLM and partners for the ecoregion, identify the information needed for addressing land-management responsibilities. Conservation Elements represent regionally significant aquatic and terrestrial species and communities that are to be conserved and (or) restored. The REA also will evaluate major drivers of ecosystem change (Change Agents) currently affecting or likely to affect the status of Conservation Elements. We selected 8 major biomes and 19 species or species assemblages to be included as Conservation Elements. We will address the four primary Change Agents—development, fire, invasive species, and climate change—required for the REA. The purpose of the work plan for the Wyoming Basin REA is to document the selection process for, and final list of, Management Questions, Conservation Elements, and Change Agents. The work plan also presents the overall assessment framework that will be used to assess the status of Conservation Elements and answer Management Questions.

  4. Rapid onsite assessment of spore viability.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Branda, Steven; Lane, Todd W.; VanderNoot, Victoria A.; Gaucher, Sara P.; Jokerst, Amanda S.

    2005-12-01

    This one year LDRD addresses problems of threat assessment and restoration of facilities following a bioterror incident like the incident that closed down mail facilities in late 2001. Facilities that are contaminated with pathogenic spores such as B. anthracis spores must be shut down while they are treated with a sporicidal agent and the effectiveness of the treatment is ascertained. This process involves measuring the viability of spore test strips, laid out in a grid throughout the facility; the CDC accepted methodologies require transporting the samples to a laboratory and carrying out a 48 hr outgrowth experiment. We proposed developing a technique that will ultimately lead to a fieldable microfluidic device that can rapidly assess (ideally less than 30 min) spore viability and effectiveness of sporicidal treatment, returning facilities to use in hours not days. The proposed method will determine viability of spores by detecting early protein synthesis after chemical germination. During this year, we established the feasibility of this approach and gathered preliminary results that should fuel a future more comprehensive effort. Such a proposal is currently under review with the NIH. Proteomic signatures of Bacillus spores and vegetative cells were assessed by both slab gel electrophoresis as well as microchip based gel electrophoresis employing sensitive laser-induced fluorescence detection. The conditions for germination using a number of chemical germinants were evaluated and optimized and the time course of protein synthesis was ascertained. Microseparations were carried out using both viable spores and spores inactivated by two different methods. A select number of the early synthesis proteins were digested into peptides for analysis by mass spectrometry.

  5. Air Traffic Management Cost Assessment Tool Project

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Robust Analytics air traffic management cost assessment tool provides the comprehensive capability to analyze the impacts of NASA Airspace Systems Program (ASP)...

  6. Final rapid reactivation project environmental assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1999-02-10

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) for the Rapid Reactivation Project at Sandia National Laboratories, New Mexico. The EA analyzes the potential effects of a proposal to increase production of neutron generators from the current capability of 600 units per year up to 2,000 units per year. The project would use existing buildings and infrastructure to the maximum extent possible to meet the additional production needs. The increased production levels would necessitate modifications and additions involving a total area of approximately 26,290 gross square feet at Sandia National Laboratories, New Mexico, Technical Area 1. Additional production equipment would be procured and installed. The no-action alternative would be to continue production activities at the current capability of 600 units per year. The EA analyzes effects on health, safety, and air quality, resulting from construction and operation and associated cumulative effects. A detailed description of the proposed action and its environmental consequences is presented in the EA.

  7. Rapid assessment of avoidable blindness in Bhutan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepcha, Nor Tshering; Chettri, Chandra Kumar; Getshen, Kunzang; Rai, Bhim Bahadur; Ramaswamy, Shamanna Bindiganavale; Saibaba, Saravanan; Nirmalan, Praveen Kumar; Demarchis, Emilia Hansson; Tabin, Geoffrey; Morley, Michael; Morley, Katharine

    2013-08-01

    To conduct a rapid assessment of avoidable blindness survey in Bhutan to obtain estimates of blindness, visual impairment, and cataract surgical coverage, outcomes and barriers among persons ≥50 years old. A total of 82 clusters of 50 people ≥50 years were selected using probability proportionate to size sampling. Eligible participants were selected from households using compact segment sampling, and underwent ophthalmic examination for visual acuity, followed by penlight and direct ophthalmoscopy. Participants with cataract were interviewed regarding surgical outcomes and barriers to surgery. Overall, 4046 of 4100 persons enumerated (98.7%) underwent ophthalmic examination. Adjusting for age and sex, the prevalence of bilaterally blind persons with available correction was 1.5% (95% confidence interval 1.09-1.89). Most blindness (67.1%) and severe visual impairment (74.1%) resulted from cataract, but 22.1% resulted from posterior segment pathology. Cataract surgical coverage for bilaterally blind persons was 72.7%. Almost 90% of patients reported moderate or good satisfaction, despite poor surgical outcomes in 23.6%. The prevalence of blindness in people aged ≥50 years in Bhutan was relatively low when compared with neighboring countries and World Health Organization sub-region estimates. Areas for improvement include community outreach, surgical outcomes, and posterior segment diseases.

  8. Chemical Stockpile Disposal Program rapid accident assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chester, C.V.

    1990-08-01

    This report develops a scheme for the rapid assessment of a release of toxic chemicals resulting from an accident in one of the most chemical weapon demilitarization plants or storage areas. The system uses such inputs as chemical and pressure sensors monitoring the plant and reports of accidents radioed to the Emergency Operations Center by work parties or monitoring personnel. A size of release can be estimated from previous calculations done in the risk analysis, from back calculation from an open-air chemical sensor measurement, or from an estimated percentage of the inventory of agent at the location of the release. Potential consequences of the estimated release are calculated from real-time meteorological data, surrounding population data, and properties of the agent. In addition to the estimated casualties, area coverage and no-death contours vs time would be calculated. Accidents are assigned to one of four categories: community emergencies, which are involve a threat to off-site personnel; on-post emergencies, which involve a threat only to on-site personnel; advisory, which involves a potential for threat to on-site personnel; and chemical occurrence, which can produce an abnormal operating condition for the plant but no immediate threat to on-site personnel. 9 refs., 20 tabs.

  9. [Indirect costs in health technology assessment].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakubczyk, Michał; Wrona, Witold; Macioch, Tomasz; Golicki, Dominik; Niewada, Maciej; Hermanowski, Tomasz

    2010-01-01

    In the health technology assessment it is crucial to define the perspective of the analysis. When the societal perspective is chosen it is necessary to include all the costs incurred by the society, also the costs of lost productivity resulting from absence of sick employees from work or their reduced efficiency at work. The aim of this article is to present the notion of indirect costs, their importance in health technology assessment and the methods of calculation. The economic literature has been reviewed for the state of knowledge on indirect costs. Three methods of calculation are described: human capital method, friction cost method or health state valuation. Indirect costs in Western European countries can amount to more than half of total costs attributed to the illness and its treatment. In the literature there is no consensus regarding the proper method of indirect costs calculation. It is necessary to conduct further theoretical and empirical research in the area of indirect costs and enhance discussion among Polish pharmacoeconomists.

  10. Rapidly falling costs of battery packs for electric vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nykvist, Björn; Nilsson, Måns

    2015-04-01

    To properly evaluate the prospects for commercially competitive battery electric vehicles (BEV) one must have accurate information on current and predicted cost of battery packs. The literature reveals that costs are coming down, but with large uncertainties on past, current and future costs of the dominating Li-ion technology. This paper presents an original systematic review, analysing over 80 different estimates reported 2007-2014 to systematically trace the costs of Li-ion battery packs for BEV manufacturers. We show that industry-wide cost estimates declined by approximately 14% annually between 2007 and 2014, from above US$1,000 per kWh to around US$410 per kWh, and that the cost of battery packs used by market-leading BEV manufacturers are even lower, at US$300 per kWh, and has declined by 8% annually. Learning rate, the cost reduction following a cumulative doubling of production, is found to be between 6 and 9%, in line with earlier studies on vehicle battery technology. We reveal that the costs of Li-ion battery packs continue to decline and that the costs among market leaders are much lower than previously reported. This has significant implications for the assumptions used when modelling future energy and transport systems and permits an optimistic outlook for BEVs contributing to low-carbon transport.

  11. Spacelab Mission Implementation Cost Assessment (SMICA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guynes, Buddy V.

    1984-10-01

    Concern by top NASA management in late 1982 that the cost to accomplish Spacelab Payload Integration and Operations appeared excessive and not well understood, led to the initiation of the Spacelab Mission Implementation Cost Assessment (SMICA) study. SMICA was chartered to a "bottoms up study" to define an accurate cost model for a reference mission, and to develop an implementation plan for reducing these costs. All phases of this Spacelab mission were considered including payload mission management, experiment and mission peculiar equipment development, mission integration and ground and flight operations, and science/engineering data evaluation. Excluded were the functions and costs for the Shuttle, Spacelab Data Processing Facility, and the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System (TDRSS). The study did establish a baseline mission cost for reference. The base-line mission payload included five new instruments and four reflight instruments. SMICA showed that a total savings of approximately 20% could be attained if the following were accomplished: 1. Compress the mission management and ground processing schedules. 2. Revise the approach to equipping, staffing, and operating the Payload Operations Control Center. 3. Change the methods of working with the experiment developers (science community). The operating philosophies and procedures recommended can serve as generic guidelines to other Spacelab mission/payload managers in reducing overall cost/manpower requirements. Attainment of maximum benefit from the assessment entails the addition of some risk, and this will be discussed briefly in the report.

  12. Southern Great Plains Rapid Ecoregional Assessment: pre-assessment report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assal, Timothy J.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Carr, Natasha B.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of the Pre-Assessment Report for the Southern Great Plains Rapid Ecoregional Assessment (REA) is to document the selection process for and final list of Conservation Elements, Change Agents, and Management Questions developed during Phase I. The overall goal of the REAs being conducted for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is to provide information that supports regional planning and analysis for the management of ecological resources. The REA provides an assessment of baseline ecological conditions, an evaluation of current risks from drivers of ecosystem change, and a predictive capacity for evaluating future risks. The REA also may be used for identifying priority areas for conservation or restoration and for assessing the cumulative effects of a variety of land uses. There are several components of the REAs. Management Questions, developed by the BLM and partners for the ecoregion, identify the information needed for addressing land-management responsibilities. Conservation Elements represent regionally significant terrestrial and aquatic species and communities that are to be conserved and (or) restored. For each Conservation Element, key ecological attributes will be evaluated to determine the status of each species and community. The REA also will evaluate major drivers of ecosystem change, or Change Agents, currently affecting or likely to affect the status of Conservation Elements in the future. The relationships between Change Agents and key ecological attributes will be summarized using conceptual models. The REA process is a two-phase process. Phase I (pre-assessment) includes developing and finalizing the lists of priority Management Questions, Conservation Elements, and Change Agents, culminating in the REA Pre-Assessment Report.

  13. Cost and Impact on Patient Length of Stay of Rapid Molecular Testing for Clostridium difficile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sewell, Bernadette; Rees, Eugene; Thomas, Ian; Ch'ng, Chin Lye; Isaac, Mike; Berry, Nidhika

    2014-12-01

    A study was performed to assess the cost of a rapid molecular assay (PCR) for diagnosis of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) and the impact of its routine use on patient length of stay (LOS) in comparison with cell culture cytotoxin neutralization assay (CCNA). From March 2011 to September 2011, Xpert(®) C. difficile (Cepheid, Sunnyvale, CA, USA) PCR was used on patients with suspicion of CDI in two acute care hospitals in Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board, Swansea, Wales, UK. Test results were used for patient management. LOS and time to reportable result were compared for negative and positive prospective patients tested by PCR and historic control patients tested by CCNA during March 2010 to September 2010. Tests were priced using micro-costing and a cost comparison analysis was undertaken. In total, 506 patients were included. Time to reportable result for PCR samples was 1.53 h compared to 46.54 h for CCNA negatives and 22.45 h for CCNA positives. Patients tested by CCNA stayed 4.88 days longer in hospital compared to PCR patients if they tested positive and 7.03 days if tests were negative. The mean reduction in LOS observed in our study has the potential to generate cost savings of up to £2,292.62 for every patient with suspected CDI, if samples were to be tested routinely with PCR instead of CCNA. A rapid molecular test for C. difficile in an acute hospital setting produced quick results that led to a decrease in LOS compared to historic CCNA control patients. This could result in considerable savings through reduced excess inpatient days.

  14. Rapid Geriatric Assessment of Hip Fracture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanker, Jesse; Duque, Gustavo

    2017-08-01

    A comprehensive geriatric assessment, combined with a battery of imaging and blood tests, should be able to identify those hip fracture patients who are at higher risk of short- and long-term complications. This comprehensive assessment should be followed by the implementation of a comprehensive multidimensional care plan aimed to prevent negative outcomes in the postoperative period (short and long term), thus assuring a safe and prompt functional recovery while also preventing future falls and fractures. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Rapid assessment methods in eye care: An overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Srinivas Marmamula

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Reliable information is required for the planning and management of eye care services. While classical research methods provide reliable estimates, they are prohibitively expensive and resource intensive. Rapid assessment (RA methods are indispensable tools in situations where data are needed quickly and where time- or cost-related factors prohibit the use of classical epidemiological surveys. These methods have been developed and field tested, and can be applied across almost the entire gamut of health care. The 1990s witnessed the emergence of RA methods in eye care for cataract, onchocerciasis, and trachoma and, more recently, the main causes of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. The important features of RA methods include the use of local resources, simplified sampling methodology, and a simple examination protocol/data collection method that can be performed by locally available personnel. The analysis is quick and easy to interpret. The entire process is inexpensive, so the survey may be repeated once every 5-10 years to assess the changing trends in disease burden. RA survey methods are typically linked with an intervention. This article provides an overview of the RA methods commonly used in eye care, and emphasizes the selection of appropriate methods based on the local need and context.

  16. A low cost rapid prototype platform for a three phase PFC rectifier application

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haase, Frerk; Kouchaki, Alireza; Nymand, Morten

    2015-01-01

    In this paper the design and development of a low cost rapid prototype platform for a Three Phase PFC rectifier application is presented. The active rectifier consists of a SiC-MOSFET based PWM converter and a low cost rapid prototype platform for simulating and implementing the digital control...... is then performed using automatic code generation for embedded targets, which provided a close link between simulation and implementation of the PFC controller. The paper shows how this rapid prototype platform developed and how it was used for the design and implementation of the controller for a high efficient Si...

  17. Low-Cost Inkjet Printing Technology for the Rapid Prototyping of Transducers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andò, Bruno; Baglio, Salvatore; Bulsara, Adi R.; Emery, Teresa; Marletta, Vincenzo; Pistorio, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    Recently, there has been an upsurge in efforts dedicated to developing low-cost flexible electronics by exploiting innovative materials and direct printing technologies. This interest is motivated by the need for low-cost mass-production, shapeable, and disposable devices, and the rapid prototyping of electronics and sensors. This review, following a short overview of main printing processes, reports examples of the development of flexible transducers through low-cost inkjet printing technology. PMID:28368318

  18. Operational response to malaria epidemics: are rapid diagnostic tests cost-effective?

    OpenAIRE

    Rolland, E; Checchi, F; Pinoges, L.; Balkan, S; Guthmann, J P; Guerin, P. J.

    2006-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To compare the cost-effectiveness of malaria treatment based on presumptive diagnosis with that of malaria treatment based on rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). METHODS: We calculated direct costs (based on experience from Ethiopia and southern Sudan) and effectiveness (in terms of reduced over-treatment) of a free, decentralised treatment programme using artesunate plus amodiaquine (AS + AQ) or artemether-lumefantrine (ART-LUM) in a Plasmodium falciparum epidemic. Our main cost-effect...

  19. Low-Cost Inkjet Printing Technology for the Rapid Prototyping of Transducers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andò, Bruno; Baglio, Salvatore; Bulsara, Adi R; Emery, Teresa; Marletta, Vincenzo; Pistorio, Antonio

    2017-04-01

    Recently, there has been an upsurge in efforts dedicated to developing low-cost flexible electronics by exploiting innovative materials and direct printing technologies. This interest is motivated by the need for low-cost mass-production, shapeable, and disposable devices, and the rapid prototyping of electronics and sensors. This review, following a short overview of main printing processes, reports examples of the development of flexible transducers through low-cost inkjet printing technology.

  20. Rapid Depression Assessment in Geriatric Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossberg, George T; Beck, David; Zaidi, Syed Noman Y

    2017-08-01

    Depression is common in geriatric patients, especially in those with multiple comorbidities and polypharmacy. Depression in older adults is often underdiagnosed and undertreated. Initial screening for depression can easily be accomplished in the waiting room. Yet the clinical interview still remains the gold standard for diagnosing geriatric depression. Key components of the clinical interview are observant watching of the patient for the subtle signs of depression. Clinical interview should be done with sensitivity to the importance of privacy. Illicit substances and medical conditions may significantly contribute. Suicide assessment should be done in a step wise manner. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Risk Informed Design Using Integrated Vehicle Rapid Assessment Tools Project

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — A successful proof of concept was performed in FY 2012 integrating the Envision tool for parametric estimates of vehicle mass and the Rapid Response Risk Assessment...

  2. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Rapid Land Cover Change

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Rapid Land Cover Change provides data and information on global and regional land cover change in raster format for...

  3. READS: the rapid electronic assessment documentation system.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Hickey, Ann

    2012-12-13

    Patient documentation is time consuming and can detract from care. The authors report a novel computer programme that manipulates routinely collected information to quantify nursing workload, along with the reason for admission, functional status, estimates of in-hospital mortality and life expectancy. The programme stores information in a database, and produces a print-out in a situation\\/background\\/assessment\\/recommendation (SBAR) format. The average time taken to enter 629 patient encounters was 6.6 minutes. Pain was the most common presentation for low workload patients, while high workload patients often presented with altered mental status and reduced mobility. There was only a modest correlation between the risk of death and nursing workload. The programme measures nursing workload without further paperwork, and improves routine documentation with a legible brief report that is automatically generated. This report can be shared and provides data that is immediately available for day-to-day care, audit, quality control and service planning.

  4. Low Cost Large Core Vehicle Structures Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hahn, Steven E.

    1998-01-01

    Boeing Information, Space, and Defense Systems executed a Low Cost Large Core Vehicle Structures Assessment (LCLCVSA) under contract to NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) between November 1997 and March 1998. NASA is interested in a low-cost launch vehicle, code named Magnum, to place heavy payloads into low earth orbit for missions such as a manned mission to Mars, a Next Generation Space Telescope, a lunar-based telescope, the Air Force's proposed space based laser, and large commercial satellites. In this study, structural concepts with the potential to reduce fabrication costs were evaluated in application to the Magnum Launch Vehicle (MLV) and the Liquid Fly Back Booster (LFBB) shuttle upgrade program. Seventeen concepts were qualitatively evaluated to select four concepts for more in-depth study. The four structural concepts selected were: an aluminum-lithium monocoque structure, an aluminum-lithium machined isogrid structure, a unitized composite sandwich structure, and a unitized composite grid structure. These were compared against a baseline concept based on the Space Shuttle External Tank (ET) construction. It was found that unitized composite structures offer significant cost and weight benefits to MLV structures. The limited study of application to LFBB structures indicated lower, but still significant benefits. Technology and facilities development roadmaps to prepare the approaches studied for application to MLV and LFBB were constructed. It was found that the cost and schedule to develop these approaches were in line with both MLV and LFBB development schedules. Current Government and Boeing programs which address elements of the development of the technologies identified are underway. It is recommended that NASA devote resources in a timely fashion to address the specific elements related to MLV and LFBB structures.

  5. Implementation of NICE Clinical Guideline 95 for assessment of stable chest pain in a rapid access chest pain clinic reduces the mean number of investigations and cost per patient

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Objective In 2010, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the UK published Clinical Guideline 95 (CG95) advocating risk stratification of patients using ?CADScore? to guide appropriate cardiac investigations for chest pain of recent onset. Implementation of the guideline in the University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was evaluated to see if it led to a reduction in the average cost of the diagnostic journey per patient and fewer investigations per pat...

  6. Low-Cost Rotating Experimentation in Compressor Aerodynamics Using Rapid Prototyping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathias Michaud

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available With the rapid evolution of additive manufacturing, 3D printed parts are no longer limited to display purposes but can also be used in structural applications. The objective of this paper is to show that 3D prototyping can be used to produce low-cost rotating turbomachinery rigs capable of carrying out detailed flow measurements that can be used, among other things, for computational fluid dynamics (CFD code validation. A fully instrumented polymer two-stage axial-mixed flow compressor test rig was designed and fabricated with stereolithography (SLA technology by a team of undergraduate students as part of a senior-year design course. Experiments were subsequently performed on this rig to obtain both the overall pressure rise characteristics of the compressor and the stagnation pressure distributions downstream of the blade rows for comparison with CFD simulations. In doing so, this work provides a first-of-a-kind assessment of the use of polymer additive technology for low-cost rotating turbomachinery experimentation with detailed measurements.

  7. Implementation of Rapid Prototyping Tools for Power Loss and Cost Minimization of DC-DC Converters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amruta V. Kulkarni

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, power loss and cost models of power electronic converters based on converter ratings and datasheet information are presented. These models aid in creating rapid prototypes which facilitate the component selection process. Through rapid prototyping, users can estimate power loss and cost which are essential in design decisions. The proposed approach treats main power electronic components of a converter as building blocks that can be arranged to obtain multiple topologies to facilitate rapid prototyping. In order to get system-level power loss and cost models, two processes are implemented. The first process automatically provides minimum power loss or cost estimates and identifies components for specific applications and ratings; the second process estimates power losses and costs of each component of interest as well as the whole system. Two examples are used to illustrate the proposed approaches—boost and buck converters in continuous conduction mode. Achieved cost and loss estimates are over 93% accurate when compared to measured losses and real cost data. This research presents derivations of the proposed models, experimental validation of the models and demonstration of a user friendly interface that integrates all the models. Tools presented in this paper are expected to be very useful for practicing engineers, designers, and researchers, and are flexible and adaptable with changing or new technologies and varying component prices.

  8. Rapid Health and Needs assessments after disasters: a systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yzermans CJ

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Publichealth care providers, stakeholders and policy makers request a rapid insight into health status and needs of the affected population after disasters. To our knowledge, there is no standardized rapid assessment tool for European countries. The aim of this article is to describe existing tools used internationally and analyze them for the development of a workable rapid assessment. Methods A review was conducted, including original studies concerning a rapid health and/or needs assessment. The studies used were published between 1980 and 2009. The electronic databasesof Medline, Embase, SciSearch and Psychinfo were used. Results Thirty-three studies were included for this review. The majority of the studies was of US origin and in most cases related to natural disasters, especially concerning the weather. In eighteen studies an assessment was conducted using a structured questionnaire, eleven studies used registries and four used both methods. Questionnaires were primarily used to asses the health needs, while data records were used to assess the health status of disaster victims. Conclusions Methods most commonly used were face to face interviews and data extracted from existing registries. Ideally, a rapid assessment tool is needed which does not add to the burden of disaster victims. In this perspective, the use of existing medical registries in combination with a brief questionnaire in the aftermath of disasters is the most promising. Since there is an increasing need for such a tool this approach needs further examination.

  9. Rapid trachoma assessment in Kersa District, Southwest Ethiopia ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study was thus conducted to assess the prevalence estimate of trachoma and its risk factors in Kersa District, Southwest Ethiopia. Methods: A community based cross sectional Rapid Assessment of Trachoma was conducted using a WHO guideline. Six sub-districts were selected from Kersa District based on primary ...

  10. Rapid Assessment of Protected area Pressures and Threats in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Regular evaluation of protected area operations can enable policy makers develop strategic responses to pervasive management problems. Pressures and threats in seven National Parks of the National Park Service (NPS) were therefore assessed using the Rapid Assessment and Prioritization of Protected Area ...

  11. Cost-effectiveness of rapid syphilis screening in prenatal HIV testing programs in Haiti.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruce R Schackman

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available New rapid syphilis tests permit simple and immediate diagnosis and treatment at a single clinic visit. We compared the cost-effectiveness, projected health outcomes, and annual cost of screening pregnant women using a rapid syphilis test as part of scaled-up prenatal testing to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission in Haiti.A decision analytic model simulated health outcomes and costs separately for pregnant women in rural and urban areas. We compared syphilis syndromic surveillance (rural standard of care, rapid plasma reagin test with results and treatment at 1-wk follow-up (urban standard of care, and a new rapid test with immediate results and treatment. Test performance data were from a World Health Organization-Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases field trial conducted at the GHESKIO Center Groupe Haitien d'Etude du Sarcome de Kaposi et des Infections Opportunistes in Port-au-Prince. Health outcomes were projected using historical data on prenatal syphilis treatment efficacy and included disability-adjusted life years (DALYs of newborns, congenital syphilis cases, neonatal deaths, and stillbirths. Cost-effectiveness ratios are in US dollars/DALY from a societal perspective; annual costs are in US dollars from a payer perspective. Rapid testing with immediate treatment has a cost-effectiveness ratio of $6.83/DALY in rural settings and $9.95/DALY in urban settings. Results are sensitive to regional syphilis prevalence, rapid test sensitivity, and the return rate for follow-up visits. Integrating rapid syphilis testing into a scaled-up national HIV testing and prenatal care program would prevent 1,125 congenital syphilis cases and 1,223 stillbirths or neonatal deaths annually at a cost of $525,000.In Haiti, integrating a new rapid syphilis test into prenatal care and HIV testing would prevent congenital syphilis cases and stillbirths, and is cost-effective. A similar approach may be beneficial in other resource

  12. Cost-effectiveness of rapid syphilis screening in prenatal HIV testing programs in Haiti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schackman, Bruce R; Neukermans, Christopher P; Fontain, Sandy N Nerette; Nolte, Claudine; Joseph, Patrice; Pape, Jean W; Fitzgerald, Daniel W

    2007-05-01

    New rapid syphilis tests permit simple and immediate diagnosis and treatment at a single clinic visit. We compared the cost-effectiveness, projected health outcomes, and annual cost of screening pregnant women using a rapid syphilis test as part of scaled-up prenatal testing to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission in Haiti. A decision analytic model simulated health outcomes and costs separately for pregnant women in rural and urban areas. We compared syphilis syndromic surveillance (rural standard of care), rapid plasma reagin test with results and treatment at 1-wk follow-up (urban standard of care), and a new rapid test with immediate results and treatment. Test performance data were from a World Health Organization-Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases field trial conducted at the GHESKIO Center Groupe Haitien d'Etude du Sarcome de Kaposi et des Infections Opportunistes in Port-au-Prince. Health outcomes were projected using historical data on prenatal syphilis treatment efficacy and included disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) of newborns, congenital syphilis cases, neonatal deaths, and stillbirths. Cost-effectiveness ratios are in US dollars/DALY from a societal perspective; annual costs are in US dollars from a payer perspective. Rapid testing with immediate treatment has a cost-effectiveness ratio of $6.83/DALY in rural settings and $9.95/DALY in urban settings. Results are sensitive to regional syphilis prevalence, rapid test sensitivity, and the return rate for follow-up visits. Integrating rapid syphilis testing into a scaled-up national HIV testing and prenatal care program would prevent 1,125 congenital syphilis cases and 1,223 stillbirths or neonatal deaths annually at a cost of $525,000. In Haiti, integrating a new rapid syphilis test into prenatal care and HIV testing would prevent congenital syphilis cases and stillbirths, and is cost-effective. A similar approach may be beneficial in other resource-poor countries

  13. Rapid, low-cost prototyping of centrifugal microfluidic devices for effective implementation of various microfluidic components

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smith, Suzanne

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available A centrifugal microfluidic platform to develop various microfluidic operations – the first of its kind in South Africa – is presented. Rapid and low-cost prototyping of centrifugal microfluidic disc devices, as well as a set-up to test the devices using centrifugal forces, is described. Preliminary results show that various microfluidic operations such as fluidic valving, transportation, and microfluidic droplet generation can be achieved. This work provides a complete centrifugal microfluidic platform and the building blocks on which to develop a variety of microfluidic applications and potential products rapidly and at a low cost.

  14. Cost-effectiveness of rapid susceptibility testing against second-line drugs for tuberculosis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dowdy, D. W.; van't Hoog, A.; Shah, M.; Cobelens, F.

    2014-01-01

    Drug susceptibility testing (DST) against second-line tuberculosis drugs (SLDs) is essential for improving outcomes among multidrug-resistant (MDR-) and extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) cases. To evaluate the potential cost-effectiveness of rapid DST for SLDs. We constructed a

  15. Low-Cost Rapid Prototyping of Whole-Glass Microfluidic Devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuen, Po Ki; Goral, Vasiliy N.

    2012-01-01

    A low-cost, straightforward, rapid prototyping of whole-glass microfluidic devices is presented using glass-etching cream that can be easily purchased in local stores. A self-adhered vinyl stencil cut out by a desktop digital craft cutter was used as an etching mask for patterning microstructures in glass using the glass-etching cream. A specific…

  16. Assessing the Cost Efficiency of Italian Universities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Agasisti, Tommaso; Salerno, C.S.

    2007-01-01

    This study uses Data Envelopment Analysis to evaluate the cost efficiency of 52 Italian public universities. In addition to being one of the first such cost studies of the Italian system, it explicitly takes into account the internal cost structure of institutions’ education programs; a task not

  17. rapid assessment of polio virus antibodies prevalence amongst ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    northern Nigeria. There is paucity of information as it relates to polio antibody prevalence amongst children in the state. Periodic serologic assessment is needed to determine the quality and effectiveness of routine vaccination campaigns carried in the state to rapidly build immunity against poliovirus. Children were.

  18. Rapid Assessment of Tree Debris Following Urban Forest Ice Storms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard J. Hauer; Angela J. Hauer; Dudley R. Hartel; Jill R. Johnson

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents a rapid assessment method to estimate urban tree debris following an ice storm. Data were collected from 60 communities to quantify tree debris volumes, mostly from public rights-of-way, following ice storms based on community infrastructure, weather parameters, and urban forest structure. Ice thickness, area of a community, and street distance are...

  19. Rapid assessment of assignments using plagiarism detection software.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bischoff, Whitney R; Abrego, Patricia C

    2011-01-01

    Faculty members most often use plagiarism detection software to detect portions of students' written work that have been copied and/or not attributed to their authors. The rise in plagiarism has led to a parallel rise in software products designed to detect plagiarism. Some of these products are configurable for rapid assessment and teaching, as well as for plagiarism detection.

  20. Rapid assessment as an evaluation tool for polio national ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... timely intervention in covering missed children and helps in careful interpretation of the usual over 100% coverage often recorded during NIDs. It is recommended that this be practiced widely to improve quality of NIDs for early global eradication of poliomyelitis. Keywords: rapid assessment, evaluation, polio immunization

  1. A novel methodology for the rapid assessment of waterbird ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A methodology for rapidly assessing the vulnerability of waterbirds to disturbance was tested at Sabaki estuary, Kenya. Three variables were employed to measure the responses of 15 species: (1) bird density, (2) minimum distance of birds from a stationary disturbance and (3) recovery times following a moving disturbance.

  2. Low Cost Rapid Response Spacecraft, (LCRRS): A Research Project in Low Cost Spacecraft Design and Fabrication in a Rapid Prototyping Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spremo, Stevan; Bregman, Jesse; Dallara, Christopher D.; Ghassemieh, Shakib M.; Hanratty, James; Jackson, Evan; Kitts, Christopher; Klupar, Pete; Lindsay, Michael; Ignacio, Mas; hide

    2009-01-01

    The Low Cost Rapid Response Spacecraft (LCRRS) is an ongoing research development project at NASA Ames Research Center (ARC), Moffett Field, California. The prototype spacecraft, called Cost Optimized Test for Spacecraft Avionics and Technologies (COTSAT) is the first of what could potentially be a series of rapidly produced low-cost satellites. COTSAT has a target launch date of March 2009 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle. The LCRRS research system design incorporates use of COTS (Commercial Off The Shelf), MOTS (Modified Off The Shelf), and GOTS (Government Off The Shelf) hardware for a remote sensing satellite. The design concept was baselined to support a 0.5 meter Ritchey-Chretien telescope payload. This telescope and camera system is expected to achieve 1.5 meter/pixel resolution. The COTSAT team is investigating the possibility of building a fully functional spacecraft for $500,000 parts and $2,000,000 labor. Cost is dramatically reduced by using a sealed container, housing the bus and payload subsystems. Some electrical and RF designs were improved/upgraded from GeneSat-1 heritage systems. The project began in January 2007 and has yielded two functional test platforms. It is expected that a flight-qualified unit will be finished in December 2008. Flight quality controls are in place on the parts and materials used in this development with the aim of using them to finish a proto-flight satellite. For LEO missions the team is targeting a mission class requiring a minimum of six months lifetime or more. The system architecture incorporates several design features required by high reliability missions. This allows for a true skunk works environment to rapidly progress toward a flight design. Engineering and fabrication is primarily done in-house at NASA Ames with flight certifications on materials. The team currently employs seven Full Time Equivalent employees. The success of COTSATs small team in this effort can be attributed to highly cross trained

  3. A robustness screen for the rapid assessment of chemical reactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Karl D; Glorius, Frank

    2013-07-01

    In contrast to the rapidity with which scientific information is published, the application of new knowledge often remains slow, and we believe this to be particularly true of newly developed synthetic organic chemistry methodology. Consequently, methods to assess and identify robust chemical reactions are desirable, and would directly facilitate the application of newly reported synthetic methodology to complex synthetic problems. Here, we describe a simple process for assessing the likely scope and limitations of a chemical reaction beyond the idealized reaction conditions initially reported. Using simple methods and common analytical techniques we demonstrate a rapid assessment of an established chemical reaction, and also propose a simplified analysis that may be reported alongside new synthetic methodology.

  4. Costs of Rapid HIV Screening in an Urban Emergency Department and a Nearby County Jail in the Southeastern United States.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne C Spaulding

    Full Text Available Emergency departments and jails provide medical services to persons at risk for HIV infection and are recommended venues for HIV screening. Our main objective in this study was to analyze the cost per new HIV diagnosis associated with the HIV screening program in these two venues. The emergency department's parallel testing program was conducted at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia starting in 2008; the jail's integrated testing program began at the Fulton County (GA Jail in 2011. The two sites, four miles apart from one another, employed the same rapid HIV test. Ascertainment that cases were new differed by site; only the jail systematically checked identities against health department HIV registries. The program in the emergency department used dedicated HIV test counselors and made 242 diagnoses over a 40-month period at a cost of $2,981 per diagnosis. The jail program used staff nurses, and found 41 new HIV cases over 10.5 months at a cost of $6,688 per new diagnosis. Differences in methods for ascertainment of new diagnoses, previously undiagnosed HIV sero-positivity, and methodologies used for assessing program costs prevent concluding that one program was more economical than the other. Nonetheless, our findings show that testing in both venues yielded many new diagnoses, with the costs within the range reported in the literature.

  5. Rapid Risk Assessment: FY05 Annual Summary Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whelan, Gene; Millard, W. David; Gelston, Gariann M.; Pelton, Mitch A.; Yang, Zhaoqing; Strenge, Dennis L.; Lee, Cheegwan; Sivaraman, Chitra; Simpson, Mary J.; Young, Joan K.; Khangaonkar, Tarang P.; Downing, Timothy R.; Hoopes, Bonnie L.; Hachmeister, Lon E.

    2006-03-06

    The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is developing decision support tools that will assist in the transition of incident information into Protective Action Recommendations (PARs) that are understandable and can be executed in a real-world, operational environment. During emergencies, responders must rapidly assess risks and decide on the best course of action—all within minutes to hours. PNNL is blending existing modeling and decision support technology to develop new methods for transitioning science-based threat assessment to PARs. The rapid risk assessment tool will be both understandable and applicable to the emergency management community and would be a valuable tool during any water security-related incident. In 2005, PNNL demonstrated the integration of the multi-thematic modeling with emergency management decision support tools to create a Rapid Risk Assessment (RRA) tool that will transition risk to PARs that assist in responding to or mitigating the direct and indirect impacts of the incident(s). The RRA tool does this by aligning multi-thematic modeling capabilities with real-world response zones established by emergency and site operations managers. The RRA tool uses the risk assessment tool to drive prognostic models that use the type of incident, time of impact, severity of impact, and duration of impact to select the most appropriate PAR. Because PARs (and the thresholds by which they are selected) are jointly established by the technologists and the emergency management and operations decision makers, the science-based risk assessment can transition into a recommendation that can be understood and executed by people in the field.

  6. PAGER--Rapid assessment of an earthquake?s impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wald, D.J.; Jaiswal, K.; Marano, K.D.; Bausch, D.; Hearne, M.

    2010-01-01

    PAGER (Prompt Assessment of Global Earthquakes for Response) is an automated system that produces content concerning the impact of significant earthquakes around the world, informing emergency responders, government and aid agencies, and the media of the scope of the potential disaster. PAGER rapidly assesses earthquake impacts by comparing the population exposed to each level of shaking intensity with models of economic and fatality losses based on past earthquakes in each country or region of the world. Earthquake alerts--which were formerly sent based only on event magnitude and location, or population exposure to shaking--now will also be generated based on the estimated range of fatalities and economic losses.

  7. Rapid Analysis of Eukaryotic Bioluminescence to Assess Potential Groundwater Contamination Events

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zacariah L. Hildenbrand

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Here we present data using a bioluminescent dinoflagellate, Pyrocystis lunula, in a toxicological bioassay to rapidly assess potential instances of groundwater contamination associated with natural gas extraction. P. lunula bioluminescence can be quantified using spectrophotometry as a measurement of organismal viability, with normal bioluminescent output declining with increasing concentration(s of aqueous toxicants. Glutaraldehyde and hydrochloric acid (HCl, components used in hydraulic fracturing and shale acidization, triggered significant toxicological responses in as little as 4 h. Conversely, P. lunula was not affected by the presence of arsenic, selenium, barium, and strontium, naturally occurring heavy metal ions potentially associated with unconventional drilling activities. If exogenous compounds, such as glutaraldehyde and HCl, are thought to have been introduced into groundwater, quantification of P. lunula bioluminescence after exposure to water samples can serve as a cost-effective detection and risk assessment tool to rapidly assess the impact of putative contamination events attributed to unconventional drilling activity.

  8. Operational response to malaria epidemics: are rapid diagnostic tests cost-effective?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rolland, Estelle; Checchi, Francesco; Pinoges, Loretxu; Balkan, Suna; Guthmann, Jean-Paul; Guerin, Philippe J

    2006-04-01

    To compare the cost-effectiveness of malaria treatment based on presumptive diagnosis with that of malaria treatment based on rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). We calculated direct costs (based on experience from Ethiopia and southern Sudan) and effectiveness (in terms of reduced over-treatment) of a free, decentralised treatment programme using artesunate plus amodiaquine (AS + AQ) or artemether-lumefantrine (ART-LUM) in a Plasmodium falciparum epidemic. Our main cost-effectiveness measure was the incremental cost per false positive treatment averted by RDTs. As malaria prevalence increases, the difference in cost between presumptive and RDT-based treatment rises. The threshold prevalence above which the RDT-based strategy becomes more expensive is 21% in the AS + AQ scenario and 55% in the ART-LUM scenario, but these thresholds increase to 58 and 70%, respectively, if the financing body tolerates an incremental cost of 1 euro per false positive averted. However, even at a high (90%) prevalence of malaria consistent with an epidemic peak, an RDT-based strategy would only cost moderately more than the presumptive strategy: +29.9% in the AS + AQ scenario and +19.4% in the ART-LUM scenario. The treatment comparison is insensitive to the age and pregnancy distribution of febrile cases, but is strongly affected by variation in non-biomedical costs. If their unit price were halved, RDTs would be more cost-effective at a malaria prevalence up to 45% in case of AS + AQ treatment and at a prevalence up to 68% in case of ART-LUM treatment. In most epidemic prevalence scenarios, RDTs would considerably reduce over-treatment for only a moderate increase in costs over presumptive diagnosis. A substantial decrease in RDT unit price would greatly increase their cost-effectiveness, and should thus be advocated. A tolerated incremental cost of 1 euro is probably justified given overall public health and financial benefits. The RDTs should be considered for malaria epidemics if

  9. Assessing the cost competitiveness of China's shipbuilding industry

    OpenAIRE

    Jiang, Liping; Strandenes, Siri Pettersen

    2012-01-01

    Cost has a significant impact on shipbuilding competitiveness. In China, low costs have created favourable conditions for domestic shipyards competing in the international market. However, China's shipbuilders have faced rising cost pressures in recent years, which may affect their industrial competitiveness. In this article, we assess shipbuilding costs and their impacts on the competitiveness of China's shipbuilding industry. We compare developments with China's two primary competitors, Sou...

  10. Organizational Perspectives on Rapid Response Team Structure, Function, and Cost: A Qualitative Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Patricia L; McSweeney, Jean

    Understanding how an organization determines structure and function of a rapid response team (RRT), as well as cost evaluation and implications, can provide foundational knowledge to guide decisions about RRTs. The objectives were to (1) identify influencing factors in organizational development of RRT structure and function and (2) describe evaluation of RRT costs. Using a qualitative, ethnographic design, nurse executives and experts in 15 moderate-size hospitals were interviewed to explore their decision-making processes in determining RRT structure and function. Face-to-face interviews were audio recorded and transcribed verbatim and verified for accurateness. Using content analysis and constant comparison, interview data were analyzed. Demographic data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. The sample included 27 participants from 15 hospitals in 5 south-central states. They described a variety of RRT responders and functions, with the majority of hospitals having a critical care charge nurse attending all RRT calls for assistance. Others described a designated RRT nurse with primary RRT duties as responder to all RRT calls. Themes of RRT development from the data included influencers, decision processes, and thoughts about cost. It is important to understand how hospitals determine optimal structure and function to enhance support of quality nursing care. Determining the impact of an RRT on costs and benefits is vital in balancing patient safety and limited resources. Future research should focus on clarifying differences between team structure and function in outcomes as well as the most effective means to estimate costs and benefits.

  11. Orlistat for the treatment of obesity: rapid review and cost-effectiveness model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foxcroft, D R; Milne, R

    2000-10-01

    The aim of this study is to clarify the potential benefits, disbenefits and costs of Orlistat for the treatment of obesity. The method was a search for relevant systematic reviews and randomized controlled trials, in Medline, Pre-Medline, Embase and the Cochrane Library, using Orlistat and its synonyms. Identified trials were appraised using a standard appraisal checklist and trial data were extracted for use in cost-effectiveness modelling. Three large multicentre, randomized placebo controlled trials were included in the rapid review. On average, Orlistat results in obese people losing an additional 3-4% of their initial body weight over diet alone during a 2 year period. There was no strong evidence that this short-term weight loss would have a longer-term impact on morbidity and mortality. The cost utility of Orlistat treatment was estimated at around 46,000 Pounds per Quality Adjusted Life Year gained (extreme values sensitivity analysis 14,000 Pounds to 132,000 Pounds). This rapid review raises some important questions about the potential value of Orlistat in the treatment of obesity. Further research is needed, not only to clarify the longer-term impact of Orlistat treatment, but also to uncover the longer-term impact on mortality and morbidity from short-term weight loss.

  12. Rapid prototyping prosthetic hand acting by a low-cost shape-memory-alloy actuator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soriano-Heras, Enrique; Blaya-Haro, Fernando; Molino, Carlos; de Agustín Del Burgo, José María

    2018-01-08

    The purpose of this article is to develop a new concept of modular and operative prosthetic hand based on rapid prototyping and a novel shape-memory-alloy (SMA) actuator, thus minimizing the manufacturing costs. An underactuated mechanism was needed for the design of the prosthesis to use only one input source. Taking into account the state of the art, an underactuated mechanism prosthetic hand was chosen so as to implement the modifications required for including the external SMA actuator. A modular design of a new prosthesis was developed which incorporated a novel SMA actuator for the index finger movement. The primary objective of the prosthesis is achieved, obtaining a modular and functional low-cost prosthesis based on additive manufacturing executed by a novel SMA actuator. The external SMA actuator provides a modular system which allows implementing it in different systems. This paper combines rapid prototyping and a novel SMA actuator to develop a new concept of modular and operative low-cost prosthetic hand.

  13. An operational procedure for rapid flood risk assessment in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dottori, Francesco; Kalas, Milan; Salamon, Peter; Bianchi, Alessandra; Alfieri, Lorenzo; Feyen, Luc

    2017-07-01

    The development of methods for rapid flood mapping and risk assessment is a key step to increase the usefulness of flood early warning systems and is crucial for effective emergency response and flood impact mitigation. Currently, flood early warning systems rarely include real-time components to assess potential impacts generated by forecasted flood events. To overcome this limitation, this study describes the benchmarking of an operational procedure for rapid flood risk assessment based on predictions issued by the European Flood Awareness System (EFAS). Daily streamflow forecasts produced for major European river networks are translated into event-based flood hazard maps using a large map catalogue derived from high-resolution hydrodynamic simulations. Flood hazard maps are then combined with exposure and vulnerability information, and the impacts of the forecasted flood events are evaluated in terms of flood-prone areas, economic damage and affected population, infrastructures and cities.An extensive testing of the operational procedure has been carried out by analysing the catastrophic floods of May 2014 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia. The reliability of the flood mapping methodology is tested against satellite-based and report-based flood extent data, while modelled estimates of economic damage and affected population are compared against ground-based estimations. Finally, we evaluate the skill of risk estimates derived from EFAS flood forecasts with different lead times and combinations of probabilistic forecasts. Results highlight the potential of the real-time operational procedure in helping emergency response and management.

  14. The Rapid Transit System That Achieves Higher Performance with Lower Life-Cycle Costs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sone, Satoru; Takagi, Ryo

    In the age of traction system made of inverter and ac traction motors, distributed traction system with pure electric brake of regenerative mode has been recognised very advantageous. This paper proposes a new system as the lowest life-cycle cost system for high performance rapid transit, a new architecture and optimum parameters of power feeding system, and a new running method of trains. In Japan, these components of this proposal, i.e. pure electric brake and various countermeasures of reducing loss of regeneration have been already popular but not as yet the new running method for better utilisation of the equipment and for lower life-cycle cost. One example of what are proposed in this paper will be made as Tsukuba Express, which is under construction as the most modern commuter railway in Greater Tokyo area.

  15. High-throughput rapid-prototyping of low-cost paper-based microfluidics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghaderinezhad, Fariba; Amin, Reza; Temirel, Mikail; Yenilmez, Bekir; Wentworth, Adam; Tasoglu, Savas

    2017-06-15

    Paper-based micro analytical devices offer significant advantages compared to the conventional microfluidic chips including cost-effectiveness, ease of fabrication, and ease of use while preserving critical features including strong capillary action and biological compatibility. In this work, we demonstrate an inexpensive, rapid method for high-throughput fabrication of paper-based microfluidics by patterning hydrophobic barriers using a desktop pen plotter integrated with a custom-made, low-cost paper feeder. We tested various types of commercial permanent markers and compared their water-resistant capabilities for creating hydrophobic barriers. Additionally, we studied the performance of markers with different types of paper, plotting speeds, and pattern dimensions. To verify the effectiveness of the presented fabrication method, colorimetric analysis was performed on the results of a glucose assay.

  16. A rapid test for soy aeroallergens exposure assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez-Simon, Daniel; Cruz, María-Jesús; Untoria, María-Dolores; Muñoz, Xavier; Villalbí, Joan R; Morell, Ferran; Gómez-Ollés, Susana

    2014-01-01

    Determining soy aeroallergens levels is extremely important in the assessment of health risks due to these airborne substances. Currently, soy aeroallergens exposure in the environment is monitored using enzyme immunoassays (EIA) which must be evaluated in a specialized laboratory by skilled personnel. To describe the development and performance of a rapid immunochromatography assay for the detection of soy aeroallergens in environmental samples. A test strip using gold labeled anti-soy hull low molecular weight extract (SHLMWE) antibody for the rapid detection of soy aeroallergens in environmental samples was developed. One hundred nineteen airborne samples were analysed in parallel by the strip assay and the anti-SHLMWE sandwich EIA. The assay results were visually analysed by three independent observers who ranked samples as: -, + or ++. Strips were also scanned and analysed by densitometry. The rapid test detected a range of concentrations from 6.25 to 25 ng/mL. Agreement in strip assay interpretations between evaluators was substantial (Kappa = 0.63; CI 0.544-0.715). Visual interpretation also gave a good concordance with EIA results, with sensitivity ranging from 77.3 to 100 and specificity from 65 to 83.5 depending on the observer. Furthermore, a strong correlation was observed between densitometry results of strip assay and EIA determinations. The strip assay developed is rapid, simple, and sensitive and does not require expensive equipment or specific skills. It has considerable potential in the environmental monitoring field for screening soy aeroallergens levels in port cities where allergen measurements are not currently performed. Due to its simplicity, the test will improve the management of soy allergic patients by controlling environmental allergen exposure without the need for apparatus or skilled personnel.

  17. Adapting and Evaluating a Rapid, Low-Cost Method to Enumerate Flies in the Household Setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Marlene K; Dentz, Holly N; Achando, Beryl; Mureithi, MaryAnne; Wolfe, Tim; Null, Clair; Pickering, Amy J

    2017-02-08

    Diarrhea is a leading cause of death among children under 5 years of age worldwide. Flies are important vectors of diarrheal pathogens in settings lacking networked sanitation services. There is no standardized method for measuring fly density in households; many methods are cumbersome and unvalidated. We adapted a rapid, low-cost fly enumeration technique previously developed for industrial settings, the Scudder fly grill, for field use in household settings. We evaluated its performance in comparison to a sticky tape fly trapping method at latrine and food preparation areas among households in rural Kenya. The grill method was more sensitive; it detected the presence of any flies at 80% (433/543) of sampling locations versus 64% (348/543) of locations by the sticky tape. We found poor concordance between the two methods, suggesting that standardizing protocols is important for comparison of fly densities between studies. Fly species identification was feasible with both methods; however, the sticky tape trap allowed for more nuanced identification. Both methods detected a greater presence of bottle flies near latrines compared with food preparation areas (P < 0.01). The grill method detected more flies at the food preparation area compared with near the latrine (P = 0.014) while the sticky tape method detected no difference. We recommend the Scudder grill as a sensitive fly enumeration tool that is rapid and low cost to implement. © The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  18. VAPI: low-cost, rapid automated visual inspection system for Petri plate analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatburn, L. T.; Kirkup, B. C.; Polz, M. F.

    2007-09-01

    Most culture-based microbiology tasks utilize a petri plate during processing, but rarely do the scientists capture the full information available from the plate. In particular, visual analysis of plates is an under-developed rich source of data that can be rapid and non-invasive. However, collecting this data has been limited by the difficulties of standardizing and quantifying human observations, by the limits of a scientists' fatigue, and by the cost of automating the process. The availability of specialized counting equipment and intelligent camera systems has not changed this - they are prohibitively expensive for many laboratories, only process a limited number of plate types, are often destructive to the sample, and have limited accuracy. This paper describes an automated visual inspection solution, VAPI, that employs inexpensive consumer computing hardware and digital cameras along with custom cross-platform open-source software written in C++, combining Trolltech's Qt GUI toolkit with Intel's OpenCV computer vision library. The system is more accurate than common commercial systems costing many times as much, while being flexible in use and offering comparable responsiveness. VAPI not only counts colonies but also sorts and enumerates colonies by morphology, tracks colony growth by time series analysis, and provides other analytical resources. Output to XML files or directly to a database provides data that can be easily maintained and manipulated by the end user, offering ready access for system enhancement, interaction with other software systems, and rapid development of advanced analysis applications.

  19. Ion Torren Semiconductor Sequencing Allows Rapid, Low Cost Sequencing of the Human Exome ( 7th Annual SFAF Meeting, 2012)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jenkins, David [EdgeBio

    2012-06-01

    David Jenkins on "Ion Torrent semiconductor sequencing allows rapid, low-cost sequencing of the human exome" at the 2012 Sequencing, Finishing, Analysis in the Future Meeting held June 5-7, 2012 in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

  20. The Simulation-Based Assessment of Pediatric Rapid Response Teams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fehr, James J; McBride, Mary E; Boulet, John R; Murray, David J

    2017-09-01

    To create scenarios of simulated decompensating pediatric patients to train pediatric rapid response teams (RRTs) and to determine whether the scenario scores provide a valid assessment of RRT performance with the hypothesis that RRTs led by intensivists-in-training would be better prepared to manage the scenarios than teams led by nurse practitioners. A set of 10 simulated scenarios was designed for the training and assessment of pediatric RRTs. Pediatric RRTs, comprising a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) registered nurse and respiratory therapist, led by a PICU intensivist-in-training or a pediatric nurse practitioner, managed 7 simulated acutely decompensating patients. Two raters evaluated the scenario performances and psychometric analyses of the scenarios were performed. The teams readily managed scenarios such as supraventricular tachycardia and opioid overdose but had difficulty with more complicated scenarios such as aortic coarctation or head injury. The management of any particular scenario was reasonably predictive of overall team performance. The teams led by the PICU intensivists-in-training outperformed the teams led by the pediatric nurse practitioners. Simulation provides a method for RRTs to develop decision-making skills in managing decompensating pediatric patients. The multiple scenario assessment provided a moderately reliable team score. The greater scores achieved by PICU intensivist-in-training-led teams provides some evidence to support the validity of the assessment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. An operational procedure for rapid flood risk assessment in Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Dottori

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The development of methods for rapid flood mapping and risk assessment is a key step to increase the usefulness of flood early warning systems and is crucial for effective emergency response and flood impact mitigation. Currently, flood early warning systems rarely include real-time components to assess potential impacts generated by forecasted flood events. To overcome this limitation, this study describes the benchmarking of an operational procedure for rapid flood risk assessment based on predictions issued by the European Flood Awareness System (EFAS. Daily streamflow forecasts produced for major European river networks are translated into event-based flood hazard maps using a large map catalogue derived from high-resolution hydrodynamic simulations. Flood hazard maps are then combined with exposure and vulnerability information, and the impacts of the forecasted flood events are evaluated in terms of flood-prone areas, economic damage and affected population, infrastructures and cities.An extensive testing of the operational procedure has been carried out by analysing the catastrophic floods of May 2014 in Bosnia–Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia. The reliability of the flood mapping methodology is tested against satellite-based and report-based flood extent data, while modelled estimates of economic damage and affected population are compared against ground-based estimations. Finally, we evaluate the skill of risk estimates derived from EFAS flood forecasts with different lead times and combinations of probabilistic forecasts. Results highlight the potential of the real-time operational procedure in helping emergency response and management.

  2. Cost effectiveness of haemophilia treatment : a cross-national assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lippert, B; Berger, K; Berntorp, E; Giangrande, P; van den Berg, M; Schramm, W; Siebert, U

    2005-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the incremental cost effectiveness of on-demand versus prophylactic haemophilia therapy in Germany, Sweden, the United Kingdom and The Netherlands from the third-party payers' perspective. Using a decision tree model, the cost effectiveness of on-demand versus

  3. Cost-Utility Analysis in Educational Needs Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, John A.

    2008-01-01

    Educational needs assessments (hereafter NAs) are inattentive to cost considerations and are frequently dominated by elite stakeholder groups. In this article I make a case for adopting a cost-utility approach, illustrating the argument with data generated in a NA of central library services in a Canadian school district. Using survey data from…

  4. Strengthening health professions regulation in Cambodia: a rapid assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, David; Duke, Jan; Wuliji, Tana; Smith, Alyson; Phuong, Keat; San, Un

    2016-03-10

    This paper describes a rapid assessment of Cambodia's current system for regulating its health professions. The assessment forms part of a co-design process to set strategic priorities for strengthening health profession regulation to improve the quality and safety of health services. A health system approach for strengthening health professions' regulation is underway and aims to support the Government of Cambodia's plans for scaling up its health workforce, improving health services' safety and quality, and meeting its Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) obligations to facilitate trade in health care services. The assessment used a mixed methods approach including: A desktop review of key laws, plans, reports and other documents relating to the regulation of the health professions in Cambodia (medicine, dentistry, midwifery, nursing and pharmacy); Key informant interviews with stakeholders in Cambodia (The term "stakeholders" refers to government officials, people working on health professional regulation, people working for the various health worker training institutions and health workers at the national and provincial level); Surveys and questionnaires to assess Cambodian stakeholder knowledge of regulation; Self-assessments by members of the five Cambodian regulatory councils regarding key capacities and activities of high-performing regulatory bodies; and A rapid literature review to identify: The key functions of health professional regulation; The key issues affecting the Cambodian health sector (including relevant developments in the wider ASEAN region); and "Smart" health profession regulation practices of possible relevance to Cambodia. We found that the current regulatory system only partially meets Cambodia's needs. A number of key regulatory functions are being performed, but overall, the current system was not designed with Cambodia's specific needs in mind. The existing system is also overly complex, with considerable duplication and

  5. Rapid climate change and society: assessing responses and thresholds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeyer, Simon; Petts, Judith; Hobson, Kersty

    2005-12-01

    Assessing the social risks associated with climate change requires an understanding of how humans will respond because it affects how well societies will adapt. In the case of rapid or dangerous climate change, of particular interest is the potential for these responses to cross thresholds beyond which they become maladaptive. To explore the possibility of such thresholds, a series of climate change scenarios were presented to U.K. participants whose subjective responses were recorded via interviews and surveyed using Q methodology. The results indicate an initially adaptive response to climate warming followed by a shift to maladaptation as the magnitude of change increases. Beyond this threshold, trust in collective action and institutions was diminished, negatively impacting adaptive capacity. Climate cooling invoked a qualitatively different response, although this may be a product of individuals being primed for warming because it has dominated public discourse. The climate change scenarios used in this research are severe by climatological standards. In reality, the observed responses might occur at a lower rate of change. Whatever the case, analysis of subjectivity has revealed potential for maladaptive human responses, constituting a dangerous or rapid climate threshold within the social sphere.

  6. Rapid ethnographic assessment of breastfeeding practices in periurban Mexico City.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero, M L; Morrow, R C; Calva, J J; Ortega-Gallegos, H; Weller, S C; Ruiz-Palacios, G M; Morrow, A L

    1999-01-01

    Before carrying out a breastfeeding promotion programme in a periurban area of Mexico City, we conducted a rapid ethnographic study to determine the factors associated with absence of exclusive breastfeeding. The responses to pilot interviews were used to develop a standardized questionnaire regarding reasons for infant feeding choice, sources of advice, and barriers to breastfeeding. We interviewed a random sample of 150 mothers with a child health, growth, and hygiene were the main reasons for the type of feeding selected; cost, comfort, and the husband's opinion were less important. Physicians were ranked as the most important source of advice. Reduction or cessation of breastfeeding occurred on the doctor's advice (68%); or when the mothers encountered local folk illnesses such as "coraje" (52%) or "susto" (54%), which are associated with anger or fright; or had "not enough milk" (62%) or "bad milk" (56%); or because of illness of the mother (56%) or child (43%). During childhood illnesses and conditions, breastfeeding was reduced and the use of supplementary foods was increased. This study emphasizes the importance of cultural values in infant feeding choices, defines specific barriers to breastfeeding, and provides a basis for interventions to promote exclusive breastfeeding in the study population.

  7. Rapid assessment of disaster damage using social media activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kryvasheyeu, Yury; Chen, Haohui; Obradovich, Nick; Moro, Esteban; Van Hentenryck, Pascal; Fowler, James; Cebrian, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Could social media data aid in disaster response and damage assessment? Countries face both an increasing frequency and an increasing intensity of natural disasters resulting from climate change. During such events, citizens turn to social media platforms for disaster-related communication and information. Social media improves situational awareness, facilitates dissemination of emergency information, enables early warning systems, and helps coordinate relief efforts. In addition, the spatiotemporal distribution of disaster-related messages helps with the real-time monitoring and assessment of the disaster itself. We present a multiscale analysis of Twitter activity before, during, and after Hurricane Sandy. We examine the online response of 50 metropolitan areas of the United States and find a strong relationship between proximity to Sandy’s path and hurricane-related social media activity. We show that real and perceived threats, together with physical disaster effects, are directly observable through the intensity and composition of Twitter’s message stream. We demonstrate that per-capita Twitter activity strongly correlates with the per-capita economic damage inflicted by the hurricane. We verify our findings for a wide range of disasters and suggest that massive online social networks can be used for rapid assessment of damage caused by a large-scale disaster. PMID:27034978

  8. Rapid Response Risk Assessment in New Project Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graber, Robert R.

    2010-01-01

    A capability for rapidly performing quantitative risk assessments has been developed by JSC Safety and Mission Assurance for use on project design trade studies early in the project life cycle, i.e., concept development through preliminary design phases. A risk assessment tool set has been developed consisting of interactive and integrated software modules that allow a user/project designer to assess the impact of alternative design or programmatic options on the probability of mission success or other risk metrics. The risk and design trade space includes interactive options for selecting parameters and/or metrics for numerous design characteristics including component reliability characteristics, functional redundancy levels, item or system technology readiness levels, and mission event characteristics. This capability is intended for use on any project or system development with a defined mission, and an example project will used for demonstration and descriptive purposes, e.g., landing a robot on the moon. The effects of various alternative design considerations and their impact of these decisions on mission success (or failure) can be measured in real time on a personal computer. This capability provides a high degree of efficiency for quickly providing information in NASA s evolving risk-based decision environment

  9. Rapid Assessment of Habitat Diversity Along the Araras Stream, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriel Barboza Bentos

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Agriculture, urbanization, and industrialization are some of the anthropogenic activities that constantly generate negative impacts on natural environments. Part of this degradation directly affects aquatic systems. This study aimed to evaluate the visual characteristics of the Araras Stream, located in the municipality of Araras, São Paulo state, Brazil. Data was collected at six different assessment sites along the river in both rural and urban areas. The evaluation used a Rapid Habitat Diversity Assessment (RHDA protocol composed of 22 parameters, which define levels of preservation of ecological conditions. According to this protocol, the 32 Km-long study transect along the Araras Stream was rated as impacted (39.6 points. A separate assessment by transects showed that only Transect 1 presented a natural level of preservation (71.8 points. Transects located in the urban area contributed the most to impacts on the aquatic environment. The RHDA protocol proved to be an important tool to evaluate and monitor aquatic environments.

  10. Rapid assessment of disaster damage using social media activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kryvasheyeu, Yury; Chen, Haohui; Obradovich, Nick; Moro, Esteban; Van Hentenryck, Pascal; Fowler, James; Cebrian, Manuel

    2016-03-01

    Could social media data aid in disaster response and damage assessment? Countries face both an increasing frequency and an increasing intensity of natural disasters resulting from climate change. During such events, citizens turn to social media platforms for disaster-related communication and information. Social media improves situational awareness, facilitates dissemination of emergency information, enables early warning systems, and helps coordinate relief efforts. In addition, the spatiotemporal distribution of disaster-related messages helps with the real-time monitoring and assessment of the disaster itself. We present a multiscale analysis of Twitter activity before, during, and after Hurricane Sandy. We examine the online response of 50 metropolitan areas of the United States and find a strong relationship between proximity to Sandy's path and hurricane-related social media activity. We show that real and perceived threats, together with physical disaster effects, are directly observable through the intensity and composition of Twitter's message stream. We demonstrate that per-capita Twitter activity strongly correlates with the per-capita economic damage inflicted by the hurricane. We verify our findings for a wide range of disasters and suggest that massive online social networks can be used for rapid assessment of damage caused by a large-scale disaster.

  11. Trachoma rapid assessment in Shandong province of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Yi; Bi, Hongsheng; Wen, Ying; Li, Chaofeng; Wu, Hui

    2014-01-01

    This research aims at identifying relative interventions on trachoma and testing the effectiveness of control measures adopted by assessing its prevalence and related risk factors in Shandong province of China. Trachoma rapid assessment (TRA) was conducted in 6 sub-districts selected from Shandong province based on primary high risk assessment. Active trachoma in children aged 1-9 years and environmental risk factors of trachoma (unclean faces, absence of running water, and absence of flush toilets) were assessed (TRA 1). Control measures were taken in endemic areas. A second TRA (TRA 2) was conducted after 12 months in the same 6 districts and findings of the two TRAs were compared. In TRA 1, we found trachoma in 3 sub-districts and the detection rate was 4% (95% CI: 0.39%-11.12%), 6% (95% CI: 1.18%-14.17%), and 6% (95% CI: 1.18%-14.17%) respectively. We could not find trachoma cases in TRA 2. Research data supports that children living with environmental risk factors face an increased risk to active trachoma. However, we could not find statistical evidence for this association, which may be caused by the limited data on prevalence. This research indicates that the TRA methodology is easy to assess trachoma and its related risk factors. Based on the results of this study, we have already achieved the goal of "elimination of trachoma" in Shandong province, as the detection rate of trachomatous inflamation follicular/trachomatous inflammation intense in 1-9-year-old children was less than 5%.

  12. A Rapid and Low-Cost PCR Thermal Cycler for Low Resource Settings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grace Wong

    Full Text Available Many modern molecular diagnostic assays targeting nucleic acids are typically confined to developed countries or to the national reference laboratories of developing-world countries. The ability to make technologies for the rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases broadly available in a portable, low-cost format would mark a revolutionary step forward in global health. Many molecular assays are also developed based on polymerase chain reactions (PCR, which require thermal cyclers that are relatively heavy (>20 pounds and need continuous electrical power. The temperature ramping speed of most economical thermal cyclers are relatively slow (2 to 3 °C/s so a polymerase chain reaction can take 1 to 2 hours. Most of all, these thermal cyclers are still too expensive ($2k to $4k for low-resource setting uses.In this article, we demonstrate the development of a low-cost and rapid water bath based thermal cycler that does not require active temperature control or continuous power supply during PCR. This unit costs $130 to build using commercial off-the-shelf items. The use of two or three vacuum-insulated stainless-steel Thermos food jars containing heated water (for denaturation and annealing/extension steps and a layer of oil on top of the water allow for significantly stabilized temperatures for PCR to take place. Using an Arduino-based microcontroller, we automate the "archaic" method of hand-transferring PCR tubes between water baths.We demonstrate that this innovative unit can deliver high speed PCR (17 s per PCR cycle with the potential to go beyond the 1,522 bp long amplicons tested in this study and can amplify from templates down to at least 20 copies per reaction. The unit also accepts regular PCR tubes and glass capillary tubes. The PCR efficiency of our thermal cycler is not different from other commercial thermal cyclers. When combined with a rapid nucleic acid detection approach, the thermos thermal cycler (TTC can enable on-site molecular

  13. A Marginal Cost Based "Social Cost of Carbon" Provides Inappropriate Guidance in a World That Needs Rapid and Deep Decarbonization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, M. G.; Vaishnav, P.; Azevedo, I. L.; Dowlatabadi, H.

    2016-12-01

    An interagency working group in the U.S. government has used three integrated assessment models of climate change to estimate "the social cost of carbon" and U.S. Federal Agencies and many others are using these figures as the benchmark for sound public policy. We argue that assessing the cost of emissions of CO2 on the margin is inappropriate for at least four reasons: 1) Greenhouse gas concentrations are cumulative and their radiative forcing is a non-linear function of the atmospheric concentration of many radiatively active gases. A marginal approach ignores these interactions and dependence of net forcing on concentrations of other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. 2) Geologic evidence points to three quasi-equilibrium climate states. We know that the response of the climate system to changes in radiative forcing is non-linear. We also know that the feedbacks that have blessed us with a stable "climate optimum" for the past 10,000 years are uncertain in magnitude and operate over limited perturbations. Beyond that perturbation, it is likely that climate system dynamics will tip to a very different climate state. The probability and consequences of such climate transitions cannot be treated using a marginal approach. 3) Climate change and its impacts will vary by location, ecosystem and socio-economic context. The responses of social, economic and ecological systems are also likely to be non-linear, display hysteresis, and "tipping" or bifurcation. 4) We neither know how to characterize such impacts nor how they will be valued across different cultures and societies. Indeed, monetizing and discounting these heterogeneous and contextual impacts as a single global metric displays a hubris that has been roundly condemned by ethicists and decision-analysts. After outlining these limitations, we describe several strategies that could be used to inform climate policy to achieving deep decarbonization.

  14. A Rapid and Low-Cost PCR Thermal Cycler for Infectious Disease Diagnostics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Kamfai; Wong, Pui-Yan; Yu, Peter; Hardick, Justin; Wong, Kah-Yat; Wilson, Scott A; Wu, Tiffany; Hui, Zoe; Gaydos, Charlotte; Wong, Season S

    2016-01-01

    The ability to make rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases broadly available in a portable, low-cost format would mark a great step forward in global health. Many molecular diagnostic assays are developed based on using thermal cyclers to carry out polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and reverse-transcription PCR for DNA and RNA amplification and detection, respectively. Unfortunately, most commercial thermal cyclers are expensive and need continuous electrical power supply, so they are not suitable for uses in low-resource settings. We have previously reported a low-cost and simple approach to amplify DNA using vacuum insulated stainless steel thermoses food cans, which we have named it thermos thermal cycler or TTC. Here, we describe the use of an improved set up to enable the detection of viral RNA targets by reverse-transcription PCR (RT-PCR), thus expanding the TTC's ability to identify highly infectious, RNA virus-based diseases in low resource settings. The TTC was successful in demonstrating high-speed and sensitive detection of DNA or RNA targets of sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDS, Ebola hemorrhagic fever, and dengue fever. Our innovative TTC costs less than $200 to build and has a capacity of at least eight tubes. In terms of speed, the TTC's performance exceeded that of commercial thermal cyclers tested. When coupled with low-cost endpoint detection technologies such as nucleic acid lateral-flow assay or a cell-phone-based fluorescence detector, the TTC will increase the availability of on-site molecular diagnostics in low-resource settings.

  15. A Rapid and Low-Cost PCR Thermal Cycler for Infectious Disease Diagnostics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamfai Chan

    Full Text Available The ability to make rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases broadly available in a portable, low-cost format would mark a great step forward in global health. Many molecular diagnostic assays are developed based on using thermal cyclers to carry out polymerase chain reaction (PCR and reverse-transcription PCR for DNA and RNA amplification and detection, respectively. Unfortunately, most commercial thermal cyclers are expensive and need continuous electrical power supply, so they are not suitable for uses in low-resource settings. We have previously reported a low-cost and simple approach to amplify DNA using vacuum insulated stainless steel thermoses food cans, which we have named it thermos thermal cycler or TTC. Here, we describe the use of an improved set up to enable the detection of viral RNA targets by reverse-transcription PCR (RT-PCR, thus expanding the TTC's ability to identify highly infectious, RNA virus-based diseases in low resource settings. The TTC was successful in demonstrating high-speed and sensitive detection of DNA or RNA targets of sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDS, Ebola hemorrhagic fever, and dengue fever. Our innovative TTC costs less than $200 to build and has a capacity of at least eight tubes. In terms of speed, the TTC's performance exceeded that of commercial thermal cyclers tested. When coupled with low-cost endpoint detection technologies such as nucleic acid lateral-flow assay or a cell-phone-based fluorescence detector, the TTC will increase the availability of on-site molecular diagnostics in low-resource settings.

  16. Calotropis procera seedlings could be used as a rapid cost effective bioindicator for measuring aluminum environmental pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosa, Kareem A.; El-Keblawy, Ali; Najar, Atyat

    2017-04-01

    Calotropis procera seedlings could be used as a rapid cost effective bioindicator for measuring aluminum environmental pollution Kareem A. Mosa, Ali El-Keblawy, Atyat Najar Department of Applied Biology, College of Sciences, University of Sharjah, UAE Rapid industrialization and urbanization processes has led to the incorporation of different heavy metals in natural resources like soil, water and air thus affecting their quality. Aluminum (Al) is a dominant heavy metal pollutant that causes serious toxic effects to living systems including plants. Therefore, it is critical to regularly monitor the changes in Al levels in natural resources. Living organisms could be used as bioindicators for monitoring and measuring the levels of heavy metals in environmental samples. The aim of this study was to develop a cost effective bioindicator for monitoring aluminum (Al) and assess the damage caused by Al bioaccumulation using the root system of Calotropis Procera seedlings. A hydroponic system was developed for growing C. Procera in four different concentrations of Al (20, 40, 60 and 80 ppm). Root length and shoot fresh and dry weights were assessed after 5, 10, 15 and 20 days of Al treatment. The results showed remarkable sensitivity of C. Procera seedlings for the different concentrations of Al. There was gradual but significant decrease in C. Procera root length with the increase in the Al concentrations. X-ray fluorescence microscopy (XRF) analysis indicated a significant increase in Al concentration in C. Procera roots with the increase of both Al concentration in the hydroponic solution and the growing period. Moreover, electrical conductivity analysis showed that Al induced damage to C. Procera root plasma membrane as indicated by the increase in electrolyte leakages. Randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) PCR analysis confirmed the genotoxin effect of Al which induced C. Procera genomic DNA modification. Altogether, the result demonstrated that C. Procera could

  17. The Effects of Rapid Assessments and Adaptive Restudy Prompts in Multimedia Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renkl, Alexander; Skuballa, Irene T.; Schwonke, Rolf; Harr, Nora; Leber, Jasmin

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the effects of rapid assessment tasks and different adaptive restudy prompts in multimedia learning. The adaptivity was based on rapid assessment tasks that were interspersed throughout a multimedia learning environment. In Experiment 1 (N = 52 university students), we analyzed to which extent rapid assessment tasks were reactive…

  18. Energy cost in children assessed by multisensor activity monitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arvidsson, Daniel; Slinde, Frode; Larsson, Sven; Hulthén, Lena

    2009-03-01

    The SenseWear Pro2 Armband (SWA; BodyMedia, Inc., Pittsburg, PA), the Intelligent Device for Energy Expenditure and Activity (IDEEA; Minisun LLC, Fresno, CA), and the ActiReg (AR; PreMed AS, Oslo, Norway) were compared with indirect calorimetry to determine the ability of these devices to assess energy cost in children during resting and different physical activities. Fourteen children, 11-13 yr old, wore the SWA, the IDEEA, and the AR during resting, sitting, stationary bicycling, jumping on a trampoline, playing basketball, stair walking, and walking/running along a 50-m track. The Oxycon Mobile portable metabolic system (VIASYS Healthcare, Conshohocken, PA) was used as the criterion method for energy cost. For resting and sitting, the three activity monitors showed comparable results, but none of them accurately assessed energy cost for stationary bicycling, jumping on a trampoline, or playing basketball. The IDEEA was the only activity monitor that accurately assessed energy cost for stair walking. Also, the IDEEA showed a close estimate of energy cost across the walking and the running intensities, whereas the SWA accurately assessed energy cost for slow to normal walking but showed increased underestimation of energy cost with increasing speed. The AR overestimated energy cost during walking and during slow running but did not respond to increasing running speed. To be able to capture children's physical activity, all three activity monitors need to be further developed. Overall, the IDEEA showed the highest ability to assess energy cost in this study, but SWA may be more feasible for use in children under free-living conditions.

  19. Cost-effective and rapid blood analysis on a cell-phone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Hongying; Sencan, Ikbal; Wong, Justin; Dimitrov, Stoyan; Tseng, Derek; Nagashima, Keita; Ozcan, Aydogan

    2013-04-07

    We demonstrate a compact and cost-effective imaging cytometry platform installed on a cell-phone for the measurement of the density of red and white blood cells as well as hemoglobin concentration in human blood samples. Fluorescent and bright-field images of blood samples are captured using separate optical attachments to the cell-phone and are rapidly processed through a custom-developed smart application running on the phone for counting of blood cells and determining hemoglobin density. We evaluated the performance of this cell-phone based blood analysis platform using anonymous human blood samples and achieved comparable results to a standard bench-top hematology analyser. Test results can either be stored on the cell-phone memory or be transmitted to a central server, providing remote diagnosis opportunities even in field settings.

  20. What Lies Beneath? An Evaluation of Rapid Assessment Tools for Management of Hull Fouling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke Murray, Cathryn; Therriault, Thomas W.; Pakhomov, Evgeny

    2013-08-01

    Despite an increased understanding of marine invasions, non-indigenous species (NIS) continue to be redistributed at both global and regional scales. Since prevention is an important element of NIS programs, monitoring vectors responsible for NIS introductions and spread, such as hull fouling, has become a priority and methods should be selected carefully to balance accuracy, time, and cost. Two common fouling assessment tools for the marine recreational boating vector were evaluated for accuracy using a traditional underwater SCUBA survey in coastal British Columbia: a dockside level of fouling assessment and a behavioral questionnaire model. Results showed that although rapid, dockside assessments did not provide an accurate assessment of fouling present below the surface, at least not in this region. In contrast, a questionnaire-based model using four easily obtained variables (boat type, age of antifouling paint, storage type, and occurrence of long distance trips) reliably identified boats carrying macrofouling species, a proxy for risk of NIS transport. Once validated, this fouling model tool could be applied in border inspection or quarantine situations where decisions must be made quickly. Further development and refinement of rapid assessment tools would improve our ability to prevent new introductions and manage spread of existing invasive species.

  1. Optofluidic refractive-index sensors employing bent waveguide structures for low-cost, rapid chemical and biomedical sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, I-Chen; Chen, Pin-Chuan; Chau, Lai-Kwan; Chang, Guo-En

    2018-01-08

    We propose and develop an intensity-detection-based refractive-index (RI) sensor for low-cost, rapid RI sensing. The sensor is composed of a polymer bent ridge waveguide (BRWG) structure on a low-cost glass substrate and is integrated with a microfluidic channel. Different-RI solutions flowing through the BRWG sensing region induce output optical power variations caused by optical bend losses, enabling simple and real-time RI detection. Additionally, the sensors are fabricated using rapid and cost-effective vacuum-less processes, attaining the low cost and high throughput required for mass production. A good RI solution of 5.31 10-4 × RIU-1 is achieved from the RI experiments. This study demonstrates mass-producible and compact RI sensors for rapid and sensitive chemical analysis and biomedical sensing.

  2. Rapid Assessment of Seismic Vulnerability in Palestinian Refugee Camps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Dabbeek, Jalal N.; El-Kelani, Radwan J.

    Studies of historical and recorded earthquakes in Palestine demonstrate that damaging earthquakes are occurring frequently along the Dead Sea Transform: Earthquake of 11 July 1927 (ML 6.2), Earthquake of 11 February 2004 (ML 5.2). In order to reduce seismic vulnerability of buildings, losses in lives, properties and infrastructures, an attempt was made to estimate the percentage of damage degrees and losses at selected refugee camps: Al Ama`ri, Balata and Dhaishe. Assessing the vulnerability classes of building structures was carried out according to the European Macro-Seismic Scale 1998 (EMS-98) and the Fedral Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The rapid assessment results showed that very heavy structural and non structural damages will occur in the common buildings of the investigated Refugee Camps (many buildings will suffer from damages grades 4 and 5). Bad quality of buildings in terms of design and construction, lack of uniformity, absence of spaces between the building and the limited width of roads will definitely increase the seismic vulnerability under the influence of moderate-strong (M 6-7) earthquakes in the future.

  3. Interactive Rapid Dose Assessment Model (IRDAM): reactor-accident assessment methods. Vol. 2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poeton, R.W.; Moeller, M.P.; Laughlin, G.J.; Desrosiers, A.E.

    1983-05-01

    As part of the continuing emphasis on emergency preparedness, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) sponsored the development of a rapid dose assessment system by Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL). This system, the Interactive Rapid Dose Assessment Model (IRDAM) is a micro-computer based program for rapidly assessing the radiological impact of accidents at nuclear power plants. This document describes the technical bases for IRDAM including methods, models and assumptions used in calculations. IRDAM calculates whole body (5-cm depth) and infant thyroid doses at six fixed downwind distances between 500 and 20,000 meters. Radionuclides considered primarily consist of noble gases and radioiodines. In order to provide a rapid assessment capability consistent with the capacity of the Osborne-1 computer, certain simplifying approximations and assumptions are made. These are described, along with default values (assumptions used in the absence of specific input) in the text of this document. Two companion volumes to this one provide additional information on IRDAM. The user's Guide (NUREG/CR-3012, Volume 1) describes the setup and operation of equipment necessary to run IRDAM. Scenarios for Comparing Dose Assessment Models (NUREG/CR-3012, Volume 3) provides the results of calculations made by IRDAM and other models for specific accident scenarios.

  4. Cost-effectiveness analysis of cervical cancer prevention based on a rapid human papillomavirus screening test in a high-risk region of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Carol E; Sellors, John; Shi, Ju-Fang; Ma, Li; Qiao, You-lin; Ortendahl, Jesse; O'Shea, Meredith K H; Goldie, Sue J

    2010-09-01

    This study assessed the cost-effectiveness of a new, rapid human papillomavirus (HPV)-DNA screening test for cervical cancer prevention in the high-risk region of Shanxi, China. Using micro-costing methods, we estimated the resources needed to implement preventive strategies using cervical cytology or HPV-DNA testing, including the Hybrid Capture 2 (hc2) test (QIAGEN Corp., Gaithersburg, MD) and the rapid HPV-DNA careHPV test (QIAGEN). Data were used in a previously published model and empirically calibrated to country-specific epidemiological data. Strategies differed by initial test, targeted age, frequency of screening, number of clinic visits required (1, 2 or 3) and service delivery setting (national, county and township levels). Outcomes included lifetime risk of cancer, years of life saved (YLS), lifetime costs and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (cost per YLS). For all screening frequencies, the most efficient strategy used 2-visit rapid HPV-DNA testing at the county level, including screening and diagnostics in the first visit, and treatment in the second visit. Screening at ages 35, 40 and 45 reduced cancer risk by 50% among women compliant with all 3 screening rounds, and was US$ 150 per YLS, compared with this same strategy applied twice per lifetime. This would be considered very cost-effective evaluated against China's per-capita gross domestic product (US$ 1,702). By enhancing the linkage between screening and treatment through a reduced number of visits, rapid HPV-DNA testing 3 times per lifetime is more effective than traditional cytology, and is likely to be cost-effective in high-risk regions of China.

  5. A Rapid and Low-Cost Nonlithographic Method to Fabricate Biomedical Microdevices for Blood Flow Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elmano Pinto

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Microfluidic devices are electrical/mechanical systems that offer the ability to work with minimal sample volumes, short reactions times, and have the possibility to perform massive parallel operations. An important application of microfluidics is blood rheology in microdevices, which has played a key role in recent developments of lab-on-chip devices for blood sampling and analysis. The most popular and traditional method to fabricate these types of devices is the polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS soft lithography technique, which requires molds, usually produced by photolithography. Although the research results are extremely encouraging, the high costs and time involved in the production of molds by photolithography is currently slowing down the development cycle of these types of devices. Here we present a simple, rapid, and low-cost nonlithographic technique to create microfluidic systems for biomedical applications. The results demonstrate the ability of the proposed method to perform cell free layer (CFL measurements and the formation of microbubbles in continuous blood flow.

  6. Identification of assessment methods of benefits and costs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronbak, Lone Grønbæk; Roth, Eva

    This note relates to tasks 4.1of the KnowSeas project and is a guidance-note to give directions towards the assessment of benefit and costs related to fisheries and advice on the further objectives related to this assessment....

  7. Development of Advanced Life Cycle Costing Methods for Technology Benefit/Cost/Risk Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yackovetsky, Robert (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The overall objective of this three-year grant is to provide NASA Langley's System Analysis Branch with improved affordability tools and methods based on probabilistic cost assessment techniques. In order to accomplish this objective, the Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory (ASDL) needs to pursue more detailed affordability, technology impact, and risk prediction methods and to demonstrate them on variety of advanced commercial transports. The affordability assessment, which is a cornerstone of ASDL methods, relies on the Aircraft Life Cycle Cost Analysis (ALCCA) program originally developed by NASA Ames Research Center and enhanced by ASDL. This grant proposed to improve ALCCA in support of the project objective by updating the research, design, test, and evaluation cost module, as well as the engine development cost module. Investigations into enhancements to ALCCA include improved engine development cost, process based costing, supportability cost, and system reliability with airline loss of revenue for system downtime. A probabilistic, stand-alone version of ALCCA/FLOPS will also be developed under this grant in order to capture the uncertainty involved in technology assessments. FLOPS (FLight Optimization System program) is an aircraft synthesis and sizing code developed by NASA Langley Research Center. This probabilistic version of the coupled program will be used within a Technology Impact Forecasting (TIF) method to determine what types of technologies would have to be infused in a system in order to meet customer requirements. A probabilistic analysis of the CER's (cost estimating relationships) within ALCCA will also be carried out under this contract in order to gain some insight as to the most influential costs and the impact that code fidelity could have on future RDS (Robust Design Simulation) studies.

  8. Application of portable XRF and VNIR sensors for rapid assessment of soil heavy metal pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Bifeng; Chen, Songchao; Hu, Jie; Xia, Fang; Xu, Junfeng; Li, Yan; Shi, Zhou

    2017-01-01

    Rapid heavy metal soil surveys at large scale with high sampling density could not be conducted with traditional laboratory physical and chemical analyses because of the high cost, low efficiency and heavy workload involved. This study explored a rapid approach to assess heavy metals contamination in 301 farmland soils from Fuyang in Zhejiang Province, in the southern Yangtze River Delta, China, using portable proximal soil sensors. Portable X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (PXRF) was used to determine soil heavy metals total concentrations while soil pH was predicted by portable visible-near infrared spectroscopy (PVNIR). Zn, Cu and Pb were successfully predicted by PXRF (R2 >0.90 and RPD >2.50) while As and Ni were predicted with less accuracy (R2 soils was conducted based on previous results; the Kappa coefficient was 0.87, which showed that the combination of PXRF and PVNIR was an effective and rapid method to determine the degree of pollution with soil heavy metals. This study provides a new approach to assess soil heavy metals pollution; this method will facilitate large-scale surveys of soil heavy metal pollution. PMID:28234944

  9. The Key Role of Eyewitnesses in Rapid Impact Assessment of Global Earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossu, R.; Steed, R.; Mazet-Roux, G.; Roussel, F.; Etivant, C.; Frobert, L.; Godey, S.

    2014-12-01

    Uncertainties in rapid impact assessments of global earthquakes are intrinsically large because they rely on 3 main elements (ground motion prediction models, building stock inventory and related vulnerability) which values and/or spatial variations are poorly constrained. Furthermore, variations of hypocentral location and magnitude within their respective uncertainty domain can lead to significantly different shaking level for centers of population and change the scope of the disaster. We present the strategy and methods implemented at the Euro-Med Seismological Centre (EMSC) to rapidly collect in-situ observations on earthquake effects from eyewitnesses for reducing uncertainties of rapid earthquake impact assessment. It comprises crowdsourced information (online questionnaires, pics) as well as information derived from real time analysis of web traffic (flashourcing technique), and more recently deployment of QCN (Quake Catcher Network) low cost sensors. We underline the importance of merging results of different methods to improve performances and reliability of collected data.We try to better understand and respond to public demands and expectations after earthquakes through improved information services and diversification of information tools (social networks, smartphone app., browsers adds-on…), which, in turn, drive more eyewitnesses to our services and improve data collection. We will notably present our LastQuake Twitter feed (Quakebot) and smartphone applications (IOs and android) which only report earthquakes that matter for the public and authorities, i.e. felt and damaging earthquakes identified thanks to citizen generated information.

  10. Application of portable XRF and VNIR sensors for rapid assessment of soil heavy metal pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Bifeng; Chen, Songchao; Hu, Jie; Xia, Fang; Xu, Junfeng; Li, Yan; Shi, Zhou

    2017-01-01

    Rapid heavy metal soil surveys at large scale with high sampling density could not be conducted with traditional laboratory physical and chemical analyses because of the high cost, low efficiency and heavy workload involved. This study explored a rapid approach to assess heavy metals contamination in 301 farmland soils from Fuyang in Zhejiang Province, in the southern Yangtze River Delta, China, using portable proximal soil sensors. Portable X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (PXRF) was used to determine soil heavy metals total concentrations while soil pH was predicted by portable visible-near infrared spectroscopy (PVNIR). Zn, Cu and Pb were successfully predicted by PXRF (R2 >0.90 and RPD >2.50) while As and Ni were predicted with less accuracy (R2 <0.75 and RPD <1.40). The pH values were well predicted by PVNIR. Classification of heavy metals contamination grades in farmland soils was conducted based on previous results; the Kappa coefficient was 0.87, which showed that the combination of PXRF and PVNIR was an effective and rapid method to determine the degree of pollution with soil heavy metals. This study provides a new approach to assess soil heavy metals pollution; this method will facilitate large-scale surveys of soil heavy metal pollution.

  11. The cost-effectiveness of rapid HIV testing in substance abuse treatment: results of a randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schackman, Bruce R; Metsch, Lisa R; Colfax, Grant N; Leff, Jared A; Wong, Angela; Scott, Callie A; Feaster, Daniel J; Gooden, Lauren; Matheson, Tim; Haynes, Louise F; Paltiel, A David; Walensky, Rochelle P

    2013-02-01

    The President's National HIV/AIDS Strategy calls for coupling HIV screening and prevention services with substance abuse treatment programs. Fewer than half of US community-based substance abuse treatment programs make HIV testing available on-site or through referral. We measured the cost-effectiveness of three HIV testing strategies evaluated in a randomized trial conducted in 12 community-based substance abuse treatment programs in 2009: off-site testing referral, on-site rapid testing with information only, on-site rapid testing with risk-reduction counseling. Data from the trial included patient demographics, prior testing history, test acceptance and receipt of results, undiagnosed HIV prevalence (0.4%) and program costs. The Cost-Effectiveness of Preventing AIDS Complications (CEPAC) computer simulation model was used to project life expectancy, lifetime costs, and quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) for HIV-infected individuals. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (2009 US $/QALY) were calculated after adding costs of testing HIV-uninfected individuals; costs and QALYs were discounted at 3% annually. Referral for off-site testing is less efficient (dominated) compared to offering on-site testing with information only. The cost-effectiveness ratio for on-site testing with information is $60,300/QALY in the base case, or $76,300/QALY with 0.1% undiagnosed HIV prevalence. HIV risk-reduction counseling costs $36 per person more without additional benefit. A strategy of on-site rapid HIV testing offer with information only in substance abuse treatment programs increases life expectancy at a cost-effectiveness ratio substance abuse treatment leaders should seek funding to implement on-site rapid HIV testing in substance abuse treatment programs for those not recently tested. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Cost-effectiveness analysis of computer-based assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauline Loewenberger

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available The need for more cost-effective and pedagogically acceptable combinations of teaching and learning methods to sustain increasing student numbers means that the use of innovative methods, using technology, is accelerating. There is an expectation that economies of scale might provide greater cost-effectiveness whilst also enhancing student learning. The difficulties and complexities of these expectations are considered in this paper, which explores the challenges faced by those wishing to evaluate the costeffectiveness of computer-based assessment (CBA. The paper outlines the outcomes of a survey which attempted to gather information about the costs and benefits of CBA.

  13. Rapid assessment of nonlinear optical propagation effects in dielectrics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoyo, J. del; de la Cruz, A. Ruiz; Grace, E.; Ferrer, A.; Siegel, J.; Pasquazi, A.; Assanto, G.; Solis, J.

    2015-01-01

    Ultrafast laser processing applications need fast approaches to assess the nonlinear propagation of the laser beam in order to predict the optimal range of processing parameters in a wide variety of cases. We develop here a method based on the simple monitoring of the nonlinear beam shaping against numerical prediction. The numerical code solves the nonlinear Schrödinger equation with nonlinear absorption under simplified conditions by employing a state-of-the art computationally efficient approach. By comparing with experimental results we can rapidly estimate the nonlinear refractive index and nonlinear absorption coefficients of the material. The validity of this approach has been tested in a variety of experiments where nonlinearities play a key role, like spatial soliton shaping or fs-laser waveguide writing. The approach provides excellent results for propagated power densities for which free carrier generation effects can be neglected. Above such a threshold, the peculiarities of the nonlinear propagation of elliptical beams enable acquiring an instantaneous picture of the deposition of energy inside the material realistic enough to estimate the effective nonlinear refractive index and nonlinear absorption coefficients that can be used for predicting the spatial distribution of energy deposition inside the material and controlling the beam in the writing process. PMID:25564243

  14. Rapid assessment of avoidable blindness in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Far Chiang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: There are no recent data on the prevalence and causes of blindness in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The aim of our study was to estimate the prevalence and causes of blindness and visual impairment in the population aged 50 years and above in the Occupied Palestinian Territories using the Rapid Assessment of Avoidable Blindness (RAAB survey method. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Clusters of 40 people who were 50 years and above were selected with probability proportionate to size using a multistage cluster random sampling method. Participants received a comprehensive ophthalmic examination in their homes, including visual acuity testing by one of three experienced ophthalmologists. The principal cause for visual loss was determined by an experienced ophthalmologist using portable diagnostic instruments. Information about previous cataract surgery, satisfaction with surgery and barriers to cataract surgery were collected. The prevalence of self-reported diabetes was also determined. The prevalence of bilateral blindness (VAor=3/60 and or=6/60 and or=6/18, 23.2% had a borderline outcome (VAor=6/60 and 22.3% had a poor outcome (VAor=50 year age group was 26.4% (95% CI: 24.9-27.9. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of blindness suggests that significant numbers of people in the Occupied Palestinian Territories exist who do not access eye care - predominantly women and those residing in Gaza. Programmes need to focus on maximizing the use of current services by these excluded groups.

  15. Competence of Litter Ants for Rapid Biodiversity Assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. H. Saumya E. Silva

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Rapid Biodiversity Assessment approaches associated with focusing taxa have overcome many of the problems related to large scale surveys. This study examined the suitability of litter ants as a focusing taxon by checking whether diversity and species assemblages of litter ants reflect the overall picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter in two vegetation types: secondary forest and pine plantation in Upper Hanthana forest reserve, Sri Lanka. In each vegetation type, arthropods were sampled using three sampling methods (Winkler extraction, hand collection, and pitfall traps along three 100 m line transects. From the two sites, 1887 litter ants (34 species and 3488 litter arthropods (52 species were collected. Species assemblages composition of both ants and other arthropods differed significantly between the two sites (ANOSIM, p=0.001 with both groups generating distinct clusters for the two sites (SIMPROF, p=0.001. But there was no significant correlation (p>0.05 between abundance and richness of litter ants and those of other arthropods in both vegetation types. The overall finding suggests that the litter ants do not reflect the holistic picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter, but the quality of the habitat for the survival of all litter arthropods.

  16. CTER—Rapid estimation of CTF parameters with error assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Penczek, Pawel A., E-mail: Pawel.A.Penczek@uth.tmc.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas Medical School, 6431 Fannin MSB 6.220, Houston, TX 77054 (United States); Fang, Jia [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas Medical School, 6431 Fannin MSB 6.220, Houston, TX 77054 (United States); Li, Xueming; Cheng, Yifan [The Keck Advanced Microscopy Laboratory, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94158 (United States); Loerke, Justus; Spahn, Christian M.T. [Institut für Medizinische Physik und Biophysik, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Charitéplatz 1, 10117 Berlin (Germany)

    2014-05-01

    In structural electron microscopy, the accurate estimation of the Contrast Transfer Function (CTF) parameters, particularly defocus and astigmatism, is of utmost importance for both initial evaluation of micrograph quality and for subsequent structure determination. Due to increases in the rate of data collection on modern microscopes equipped with new generation cameras, it is also important that the CTF estimation can be done rapidly and with minimal user intervention. Finally, in order to minimize the necessity for manual screening of the micrographs by a user it is necessary to provide an assessment of the errors of fitted parameters values. In this work we introduce CTER, a CTF parameters estimation method distinguished by its computational efficiency. The efficiency of the method makes it suitable for high-throughput EM data collection, and enables the use of a statistical resampling technique, bootstrap, that yields standard deviations of estimated defocus and astigmatism amplitude and angle, thus facilitating the automation of the process of screening out inferior micrograph data. Furthermore, CTER also outputs the spatial frequency limit imposed by reciprocal space aliasing of the discrete form of the CTF and the finite window size. We demonstrate the efficiency and accuracy of CTER using a data set collected on a 300 kV Tecnai Polara (FEI) using the K2 Summit DED camera in super-resolution counting mode. Using CTER we obtained a structure of the 80S ribosome whose large subunit had a resolution of 4.03 Å without, and 3.85 Å with, inclusion of astigmatism parameters. - Highlights: • We describe methodology for estimation of CTF parameters with error assessment. • Error estimates provide means for automated elimination of inferior micrographs. • High computational efficiency allows real-time monitoring of EM data quality. • Accurate CTF estimation yields structure of the 80S human ribosome at 3.85 Å.

  17. The first rapid assessment of avoidable blindness (RAAB in Thailand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saichin Isipradit

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The majority of vision loss is preventable or treatable. Population surveys are crucial for planning, implementation, and monitoring policies and interventions to eliminate avoidable blindness and visual impairments. This is the first rapid assessment of avoidable blindness (RAAB study in Thailand. METHODS: A cross-sectional study of a population in Thailand age 50 years old or over aimed to assess the prevalence and causes of blindness and visual impairments. Using the Thailand National Census 2010 as the sampling frame, a stratified four-stage cluster sampling based on a probability proportional to size was conducted in 176 enumeration areas from 11 provinces. Participants received comprehensive eye examination by ophthalmologists. RESULTS: The age and sex adjusted prevalence of blindness (presenting visual acuity (VA <20/400, severe visual impairment (VA <20/200 but ≥20/400, and moderate visual impairment (VA <20/70 but ≥20/200 were 0.6% (95% CI: 0.5-0.8, 1.3% (95% CI: 1.0-1.6, 12.6% (95% CI: 10.8-14.5. There was no significant difference among the four regions of Thailand. Cataract was the main cause of vision loss accounted for 69.7% of blindness. Cataract surgical coverage in persons was 95.1% for cut off VA of 20/400. Refractive errors, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and corneal opacities were responsible for 6.0%, 5.1%, 4.0%, and 2.0% of blindness respectively. CONCLUSION: Thailand is on track to achieve the goal of VISION 2020. However, there is still much room for improvement. Policy refinements and innovative interventions are recommended to alleviate blindness and visual impairments especially regarding the backlog of blinding cataract, management of non-communicative, chronic, age-related eye diseases such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy, prevention of childhood blindness, and establishment of a robust eye health information system.

  18. Neighborhood walkability and hospital treatment costs: A first assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yan; Davey, Rachel; Cochrane, Tom; Learnihan, Vincent; Hanigan, Ivan C; Bagheri, Nasser

    2017-06-01

    Health system expenditure is a global concern, with hospital cost a major component. Built environment has been found to affect physical activity and health outcomes. The purpose of the study was a first assessment of the relationship between neighborhood walkability and hospital treatment costs. For 88 neighborhoods in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2011-2013, a total of 30,690 public hospital admissions for the treatment of four diagnostic groups (cancers, endocrine, nutritional and metabolic diseases, circulatory diseases and respiratory diseases) were extracted from the ACT admitted patient care database and analyzed in relation to the Walk Score® index as a measure of walkability. Hospital cost was calculated according to the cost weight of the diagnosis related group assigned to each admission. Linear regressions were used to analyze the associations of walkability with hospital cost per person, admissions per person and cost per admission at the neighborhood level. An inverse association with neighborhood walkability was found for cost per person and admissions per person, but not cost per admission. After adjusting for age, sex and socioeconomic status, a 20-unit increase in walkability was associated with 12.1% (95% CI: 7.1-17.0%) lower cost and 12.5% (8.1-17.0%) fewer admissions. These associations did not vary by neighborhood socioeconomic status. This exploratory analysis suggests the potential for improved population health and reduced hospital cost with greater neighborhood walkability. Further research should replicate the analysis with data from other urban settings, and focus on the behavioral mechanisms underlying the inverse walkability-hospital cost association. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Microwave Hematoma Detector for the Rapid Assessment of Head Injuries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hadded, W.; Chang, J.; Rosenbury, T.; Dallum, G.; Welsch, P.; Scott, D.; Duarte, D.; Acevedo-Bolton, V.

    2000-02-11

    A non-invasive microwave device for the detection of epi/subdural hemorrhaging (hematoma) is under current development. The final device will be highly portable and allow real time assessment of head injuries, thereby satisfying early detection needs of the field technician as well as providing a tool for repetitious monitoring of high-risk individuals. The device will adopt the advanced technology of micropower impulse radar (MIR) which is a state of the art low cost ultra wide band (UWB) microwave radar developed here at LLNL. It will consist of a MIR transmitting and receiving module, a computer based signal processing module, and a device-to-patient signal coupling module--the UWB antenna. The prototype design is being guided by the needs of the patient and the practitioner along with the prerequisites of the technology including issues such as the specificity of the device, efficacy of diagnosis, accuracy, robustness, and patient comfort. The prototype development follows a concurrent approach which .includes experiments designed to evaluate requirements of the radar and antenna design, phantom development to facilitate laboratory investigations, and investigation into the limits of adapting pre-existing non-medical MIR devices to medical applications. This report will present the accomplishments and project highlights to date in the fiscal year 1999. Future project projections will also be discussed.

  20. Field evaluation of the performance and testing costs of a rapid point-of-care test for syphilis in a red-light district of Manaus, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benzaken, A S; Sabidó, M; Galban, E G; Pedroza, V; Vasquez, F; Araújo, A; Peeling, R W; Mayaud, P

    2008-08-01

    To assess the performance, usefulness and cost of a rapid treponemal antibody assay (VisiTect Syphilis) to detect syphilis in high risk populations. People who attended STI clinics in Manaus, Brazil, were screened for syphilis using the fluorescent treponemal antibody absorption (FTA-Abs) test and a non-treponemal test (Venereal Diseases Research Laboratory (VDRL)), and for HIV. Finger prick blood samples were tested with VisiTect Syphilis. The rapid test was evaluated against the reference FTA-Abs and for its usefulness in detecting active syphilis (FTA-Abs and VDRL positive). Operational performance was assessed through providers' and patients' interviews. An economic evaluation was conducted from the provider's perspective. 510 patients (60% men) were enrolled, of whom 13 (2.5%) were HIV-1 seropositive. Syphilis prevalence (FTA-Abs) was 18% and active syphilis prevalence was 7.5%. 11% (57/506) of samples were positive by VisiTect. The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values of VisiTect Syphilis were 57% (95% CI 45.8 to 66.7), 99% (95% CI 97.0 to 99.6), 91% (95% CI 80.0 to 96.7) and 91% (95% CI 88.0 to 93.5), respectively. VisiTect Syphilis identified 79% (30/38) of active syphilis cases. The cost per case of syphilis was $16.8 for VDRL, $33.2 for low cost and $56.3 for high cost VisiTect Syphilis; the cost per case of active syphilis was $21.3, $57.5 and $97.6, respectively. Patients identified finger prick pain and preference for venous blood collection as minor barriers to test use. VisiTect Syphilis had low sensitivity in field use and was less cost effective than conventional VDRL. However, rapid and correct identification of a high proportion of active syphilis cases combined with operational characteristics suggest a role in high risk populations.

  1. Rapid Assessment Medical Support (RAMS) for active shooter incidents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mechem, C Crawford; Bossert, Richard; Baldini, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    This country has witnessed a steady increase in the number of active shooter incidents in recent years. The traditional emergency medical services (EMS) response to such incidents has been to stage at a safe distance until the scene has been secured by law enforcement. Such an approach may lead to unnecessary delays in medical care and potentially needless loss of life. To address this issue locally, the Philadelphia Fire Department (PFD) and the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) collaborated to develop the Rapid Assessment Medical Support (RAMS) program. All PFD paramedics have been equipped and trained to move with PPD officers into a scene that has been cleared by police but not yet secured in order to initiate emergency care, with an emphasis on hemorrhage control. Patients are then extracted to awaiting EMS resources in the cold zone. The history behind the program and the challenges and obstacles that had to be addressed in its development are described. These included initial and ongoing training and funding sources; buy-in from risk management, labor, and the individual providers; whether only paramedics should be included in the RAMS program or if the PFD's firefighter-EMTs should be included as well; the potential for mission creep as police recognized the value of this asset and its potential application to other scenarios; and how to involve the many nonmunicipal ambulance services that are not involved in the routine operation of Philadelphia's 9-1-1 system. To date, RAMS teams have been activated on multiple occasions, but fortunately the incidents were resolved without injury or loss of life. However, the program provides another valuable tool with which the City of Philadelphia can respond should another active shooter incident occur.

  2. Rapid assessment of avoidable blindness in Nakuru district, Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathenge, Wanjiku; Kuper, Hannah; Limburg, Hans; Polack, Sarah; Onyango, Oscar; Nyaga, Godfrey; Foster, Allen

    2007-03-01

    To estimate the prevalence of avoidable blindness in > or =50-year-olds in Nakuru district, Kenya, and to evaluate the Rapid Assessment for Avoidable Blindness (RAAB), a new methodology to measure the magnitude and causes of blindness. Cross-sectional population-based survey. Seventy-six clusters of 50 people 50 years or older were selected by probability proportionate to size sampling of clusters. Households within clusters were selected through compact segment sampling. Three thousand seven hundred eighty-four eligible subjects were selected, of whom 3503 (92.6%) were examined. Participants underwent a comprehensive ophthalmic examination in their homes by an ophthalmologist, including measurement of visual acuity (VA) with a tumbling-E chart and the diagnosis of the principal cause of visual impairment. Those who had undergone cataract surgery were questioned about the details of the operation and their satisfaction with surgery. Those who were visually impaired from cataract were asked why they had not gone for surgery. Visual acuity and principal cause of VA or =6/60) was 5.8% (95% CI, 4.8%-6.8%) in the sample. Definite avoidable causes of blindness (i.e., cataract, refractive error, trachoma, and corneal scarring) were responsible for 69.6% of bilateral blindness and 74.9% of bilateral visual impairment. Cataract was the major cause of blindness (42.0%) and visual impairment (36.0%). The cataract surgical coverage was high, with 78% of those with bilateral cataract who needed surgery having had surgery at VA or =50-year-olds in Nakuru district was low, in part due to the high cataract surgical coverage. The RAAB is easy to use and inexpensive and provides information about the magnitude and causes of avoidable blindness that can be used for planning and monitoring eye care services.

  3. Photograph-based ergonomic evaluations using the Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liebregts, J; Sonne, M; Potvin, J R

    2016-01-01

    The Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA) was developed to assess musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) risk factors for computer workstations. This study examined the validity and reliability of remotely conducted, photo-based assessments using ROSA. Twenty-three office workstations were assessed on-site by an ergonomist, and 5 photos were obtained. Photo-based assessments were conducted by three ergonomists. The sensitivity and specificity of the photo-based assessors' ability to correctly classify workstations was 79% and 55%, respectively. The moderate specificity associated with false positive errors committed by the assessors could lead to unnecessary costs to the employer. Error between on-site and photo-based final scores was a considerable ∼2 points on the 10-point ROSA scale (RMSE = 2.3), with a moderate relationship (ρ = 0.33). Interrater reliability ranged from fairly good to excellent (ICC = 0.667-0.856) and was comparable to previous results. Sources of error include the parallax effect, poor estimations of small joint (e.g. hand/wrist) angles, and boundary errors in postural binning. While this method demonstrated potential validity, further improvements should be made with respect to photo-collection and other protocols for remotely-based ROSA assessments. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  4. Rapid, simple, and cost-effective treatments to achieve long-term hydrophilic PDMS surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemmilä, Samu; Cauich-Rodríguez, Juan V.; Kreutzer, Joose; Kallio, Pasi

    2012-10-01

    This paper describes rapid, simple, and cost-effective treatments for producing biocompatible and long-term hydrophilic polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) surfaces identified in an experimental study investigating 39 treatments in all. The wetting of the surfaces was monitored during six months. Changes in surface morphology and chemical composition were also analyzed. Some of the treatments are presented here for the first time, while for earlier presented treatments the selection of investigated parameters was wider and the observation period for the surface wetting longer. The PDMS surfaces were modified by surface activation, physisorption, and synthesis of both “grafting to” and “grafting from” polymer brushes. In surface activation, the PDMS sample was exposed to oxygen plasma, with several combinations of exposure time and RF power. In the physisorption and synthesis of polymer brushes, three commercially available and biocompatible chemicals were used: 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA), polyethylene glycol (PEG), and polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP). Thirty-three of the 39 treatments rendered the PDMS hydrophilic, and in 12 cases the hydrophilicity lasted at least six months. Seven of these long-term hydrophilic coatings supported a contact angle of 30° or less. Three of the long-lasting hydrophilic coatings required only minutes to prepare.

  5. Improved rapid magnitude estimation for a community-based, low-cost MEMS accelerometer network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Angela I.; Cochran, Elizabeth S.; Kaiser, Anna E.; Christensen, Carl M.; Yildirim, Battalgazi; Lawrence, Jesse F.

    2015-01-01

    Immediately following the Mw 7.2 Darfield, New Zealand, earthquake, over 180 Quake‐Catcher Network (QCN) low‐cost micro‐electro‐mechanical systems accelerometers were deployed in the Canterbury region. Using data recorded by this dense network from 2010 to 2013, we significantly improved the QCN rapid magnitude estimation relationship. The previous scaling relationship (Lawrence et al., 2014) did not accurately estimate the magnitudes of nearby (estimates earthquake magnitudes within 1 magnitude unit of the GNS Science GeoNet earthquake catalog magnitudes for 99% of the events tested, within 0.5 magnitude units for 90% of the events, and within 0.25 magnitude units for 57% of the events. These magnitudes are reliably estimated within 3 s of the initial trigger recorded on at least seven stations. In this report, we present the methods used to calculate a new scaling relationship and demonstrate the accuracy of the revised magnitude estimates using a program that is able to retrospectively estimate event magnitudes using archived data.

  6. Rapid assessment of injection practices in Cambodia, 2002

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goldstein Susan

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Injection overuse and unsafe injection practices facilitate transmission of bloodborne pathogens such as hepatitis B virus (HBV, hepatitis C virus (HCV, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV. Anecdotal reports of unsafe and unnecessary therapeutic injections and the high prevalence of HBV (8.0%, HCV (6.5%, and HIV (2.6% infection in Cambodia have raised concern over injection safety. To estimate the magnitude and patterns of such practices, a rapid assessment of injection practices was conducted. Methods We surveyed a random sample of the general population in Takeo Province and convenience samples of prescribers and injection providers in Takeo Province and Phnom Penh city regarding injection-related knowledge, attitudes, and practices. Injection providers were observed administering injections. Data were collected using standardized methods adapted from the World Health Organization safe injection assessment guidelines. Results Among the general population sample (n = 500, the overall injection rate was 5.9 injections per person-year, with 40% of participants reporting receipt of ≥ 1 injection during the previous 6 months. Therapeutic injections, intravenous infusions, and immunizations accounted for 74%, 16% and 10% of injections, respectively. The majority (>85% of injections were received in the private sector. All participants who recalled their last injection reported the injection was administered with a newly opened disposable syringe and needle. Prescribers (n = 60 reported that 47% of the total prescriptions they wrote included a therapeutic injection or infusion. Among injection providers (n = 60, 58% recapped the syringe after use and 13% did not dispose of the used needle and syringe appropriately. Over half (53% of the providers reported a needlestick injury during the previous 12 months. Ninety percent of prescribers and injection providers were aware HBV, HCV, and HIV were transmitted through unsafe

  7. Rapid ethnographic assessment of breastfeeding practices in periurban Mexico City

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Guerrero, M L; Morrow, R C; Calva, J J; Ortega-Gallegos, H; Weller, S C; Ruiz-Palacios, G M; Morrow, A L

    1999-01-01

    Before carrying out a breastfeeding promotion programme in a periurban area of Mexico City, we conducted a rapid ethnographic study to determine the factors associated with absence of exclusive breastfeeding...

  8. Mitigation and adaptation cost assessment: Concepts, methods and appropriate use

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-12-31

    The present report on mitigation and adaptation costs addresses the complex issue of identifying synergies and tradeoffs between national priorities and mitigation policies, an issue that requires the integration of various disciplines so as to provide a comprehensive overview of future development trends, available technologies and economic policies. Further, the report suggests a new conceptual framework for treating the social aspects in assessing mitigation and adaptation costs in climate change studies. The impacts of certain sustainability indicators such as employment and poverty reduction on mitigation costing are also discussed in the report. Among the topics to be considered by over 120 distinguished international experts, are the elements of costing methodologies at both the micro and macro levels. Special effort will be made to include the impacts of such parameters as income, equity, poverty, employment and trade. Hence, the contents of this report are highly relevant to the authors of the Third Working Group in the development of the TAR. The report contains a chapter on Special Issues and Problems Related to Cost Assessment for Developing Countries. This chapter will provide valuable background in the further development of these concepts in the TAR because it is an area that has not received due attention in previous work. (au)

  9. Assessing the costs and benefits of US renewable portfolio standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiser, Ryan; Mai, Trieu; Millstein, Dev; Barbose, Galen; Bird, Lori; Heeter, Jenny; Keyser, David; Krishnan, Venkat; Macknick, Jordan

    2017-09-01

    Renewable portfolio standards (RPS) exist in 29 US states and the District of Columbia. This article summarizes the first national-level, integrated assessment of the future costs and benefits of existing RPS policies; the same metrics are evaluated under a second scenario in which widespread expansion of these policies is assumed to occur. Depending on assumptions about renewable energy technology advancement and natural gas prices, existing RPS policies increase electric system costs by as much as 31 billion, on a present-value basis over 2015-2050. The expanded renewable deployment scenario yields incremental costs that range from 23 billion to 194 billion, depending on the assumptions employed. The monetized value of improved air quality and reduced climate damages exceed these costs. Using central assumptions, existing RPS policies yield 97 billion in air-pollution health benefits and 161 billion in climate damage reductions. Under the expanded RPS case, health benefits total 558 billion and climate benefits equal 599 billion. These scenarios also yield benefits in the form of reduced water use. RPS programs are not likely to represent the most cost effective path towards achieving air quality and climate benefits. Nonetheless, the findings suggest that US RPS programs are, on a national basis, cost effective when considering externalities.

  10. Xurography as a Rapid Fabrication Alternative for Point-of-Care Devices: Assessment of Passive Micromixers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-López, J. Israel; Mojica, Mauricio; Rodríguez, Ciro A.; Siller, Héctor R.

    2016-01-01

    Despite the copious amount of research on the design and operation of micromixers, there are few works regarding manufacture technology aimed at implementation beyond academic environments. This work evaluates the viability of xurography as a rapid fabrication tool for the development of ultra-low cost microfluidic technology for extreme Point-of-Care (POC) micromixing devices. By eschewing photolithographic processes and the bulkiness of pumping and enclosure systems for rapid fabrication and passively driven operation, xurography is introduced as a manufacturing alternative for asymmetric split and recombine (ASAR) micromixers. A T-micromixer design was used as a reference to assess the effects of different cutting conditions and materials on the geometric features of the resulting microdevices. Inspection by stereographic and confocal microscopy showed that it is possible to manufacture devices with less than 8% absolute dimensional error. Implementation of the manufacturing methodology in modified circular shape- based SAR microdevices (balanced and unbalanced configurations) showed that, despite the precision limitations of the xurographic process, it is possible to implement this methodology to produce functional micromixing devices. Mixing efficiency was evaluated numerically and experimentally at the outlet of the microdevices with performances up to 40%. Overall, the assessment encourages further research of xurography for the development of POC micromixers. PMID:27196904

  11. Xurography as a Rapid Fabrication Alternative for Point-of-Care Devices: Assessment of Passive Micromixers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-López, J Israel; Mojica, Mauricio; Rodríguez, Ciro A; Siller, Héctor R

    2016-05-16

    Despite the copious amount of research on the design and operation of micromixers, there are few works regarding manufacture technology aimed at implementation beyond academic environments. This work evaluates the viability of xurography as a rapid fabrication tool for the development of ultra-low cost microfluidic technology for extreme Point-of-Care (POC) micromixing devices. By eschewing photolithographic processes and the bulkiness of pumping and enclosure systems for rapid fabrication and passively driven operation, xurography is introduced as a manufacturing alternative for asymmetric split and recombine (ASAR) micromixers. A T-micromixer design was used as a reference to assess the effects of different cutting conditions and materials on the geometric features of the resulting microdevices. Inspection by stereographic and confocal microscopy showed that it is possible to manufacture devices with less than 8% absolute dimensional error. Implementation of the manufacturing methodology in modified circular shape- based SAR microdevices (balanced and unbalanced configurations) showed that, despite the precision limitations of the xurographic process, it is possible to implement this methodology to produce functional micromixing devices. Mixing efficiency was evaluated numerically and experimentally at the outlet of the microdevices with performances up to 40%. Overall, the assessment encourages further research of xurography for the development of POC micromixers.

  12. Xurography as a Rapid Fabrication Alternative for Point-of-Care Devices: Assessment of Passive Micromixers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Israel Martínez-López

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Despite the copious amount of research on the design and operation of micromixers, there are few works regarding manufacture technology aimed at implementation beyond academic environments. This work evaluates the viability of xurography as a rapid fabrication tool for the development of ultra-low cost microfluidic technology for extreme Point-of-Care (POC micromixing devices. By eschewing photolithographic processes and the bulkiness of pumping and enclosure systems for rapid fabrication and passively driven operation, xurography is introduced as a manufacturing alternative for asymmetric split and recombine (ASAR micromixers. A T-micromixer design was used as a reference to assess the effects of different cutting conditions and materials on the geometric features of the resulting microdevices. Inspection by stereographic and confocal microscopy showed that it is possible to manufacture devices with less than 8% absolute dimensional error. Implementation of the manufacturing methodology in modified circular shape- based SAR microdevices (balanced and unbalanced configurations showed that, despite the precision limitations of the xurographic process, it is possible to implement this methodology to produce functional micromixing devices. Mixing efficiency was evaluated numerically and experimentally at the outlet of the microdevices with performances up to 40%. Overall, the assessment encourages further research of xurography for the development of POC micromixers.

  13. Ranking of small scale proposals for water system repair using the Rapid Impact Assessment Matrix (RIAM)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shakib-Manesh, T.E.; Hirvonen, K.O.; Jalava, K.J.; Ålander, T.; Kuitunen, M.T., E-mail: markku.kuitunen@jyu.fi

    2014-11-15

    Environmental impacts of small scale projects are often assessed poorly, or not assessed at all. This paper examines the usability of the Rapid Impact Assessment Matrix (RIAM) as a tool to prioritize project proposals for small scale water restoration projects in relation to proposals' potential to improve the environment. The RIAM scoring system was used to assess and rank the proposals based on their environmental impacts, the costs of the projects to repair the harmful impacts, and the size of human population living around the sites. A four-member assessment group (The expert panel) gave the RIAM-scores to the proposals. The assumed impacts of the studied projects at the Eastern Finland water systems were divided into the ecological and social impacts. The more detailed assessment categories of the ecological impacts in this study were impacts on landscape, natural state, and limnology. The social impact categories were impacts to recreational use of the area, fishing, industry, population, and economy. These impacts were scored according to their geographical and social significance, their magnitude of change, their character, permanence, reversibility, and cumulativeness. The RIAM method proved to be an appropriate and recommendable method for the small-scale assessment and prioritizing of project proposals. If the assessments are well documented, the RIAM can be a method for easy assessing and comparison of the various kinds of projects. In the studied project proposals there were no big surprises in the results: the best ranks were received by the projects, which were assumed to return watersheds toward their original state.

  14. Elevated guideway cost-ride quality studies for group rapid transit systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    1977-10-01

    A methodology is developed for relating cost to ride quality in elevated guideway : system design, based upon directly relating guideway structural properties and : construction tolerances to both cost and ride quality. It is illustrated in detail : ...

  15. The usefulness and significance of assessing rapidly progressive spermatozoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Björndahl, Lars

    2010-01-01

    It is possible and clinically relevant to distinguish between slow and rapid progressive spermatozoa in basic semen analysis. This is discussed in light of the different purposes of semen analysis for the subfertile couple and the male patient. The two groups of progressive spermatozoa should be distinguished to help ensure that pertinent information available in the semen sample is not neglected. PMID:20111079

  16. Rapid, low-cost photogrammetry to monitor volcanic eruptions: an example from Mount St. Helens, Washington, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diefenbach, Angela K.; Crider, Juliet G.; Schilling, Steve P.; Dzurisin, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    We describe a low-cost application of digital photogrammetry using commercially available photogrammetric software and oblique photographs taken with an off-the-shelf digital camera to create sequential digital elevation models (DEMs) of a lava dome that grew during the 2004–2008 eruption of Mount St. Helens (MSH) volcano. Renewed activity at MSH provided an opportunity to devise and test this method, because it could be validated against other observations of this well-monitored volcano. The datasets consist of oblique aerial photographs (snapshots) taken from a helicopter using a digital single-lens reflex camera. Twelve sets of overlapping digital images of the dome taken during 2004–2007 were used to produce DEMs and to calculate lava dome volumes and extrusion rates. Analyses of the digital images were carried out using photogrammetric software to produce three-dimensional coordinates of points identified in multiple photos. The evolving morphology of the dome was modeled by comparing successive DEMs. Results were validated by comparison to volume measurements derived from traditional vertical photogrammetric surveys by the US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory. Our technique was significantly less expensive and required less time than traditional vertical photogrammetric techniques; yet, it consistently yielded volume estimates within 5% of the traditional method. This technique provides an inexpensive, rapid assessment tool for tracking lava dome growth or other topographic changes at restless volcanoes.

  17. Low-cost, rapidly-developed, 3D printed in vitro corpus callosum model for mucopolysaccharidosis type I.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabet, Anthony; Gardner, Matthew; Swanson, Sebastian; Crump, Sydney; McMeekin, Austin; Gong, Diana; Tabet, Rebecca; Hacker, Benjamin; Nestrasil, Igor

    2016-01-01

    The rising prevalence of high throughput screening and the general inability of (1) two dimensional (2D) cell culture and (2) in vitro release studies to predict in vivo neurobiological and pharmacokinetic responses in humans has led to greater interest in more realistic three dimensional (3D) benchtop platforms. Advantages of 3D human cell culture over its 2D analogue, or even animal models, include taking the effects of microgeometry and long-range topological features into consideration. In the era of personalized medicine, it has become increasingly valuable to screen candidate molecules and synergistic therapeutics at a patient-specific level, in particular for diseases that manifest in highly variable ways. The lack of established standards and the relatively arbitrary choice of probing conditions has limited in vitro drug release to a largely qualitative assessment as opposed to a predictive, quantitative measure of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in tissue. Here we report the methods used in the rapid, low-cost development of a 3D model of a mucopolysaccharidosis type I patient's corpus callosum, which may be used for cell culture and drug release. The CAD model is developed from in vivo brain MRI tracing of the corpus callosum using open-source software, printed with poly (lactic-acid) on a Makerbot Replicator 5X, UV-sterilized, and coated with poly (lysine) for cellular adhesion. Adaptations of material and 3D printer for expanded applications are also discussed.

  18. Using Ant Communities For Rapid Assessment Of Terrestrial Ecosystem Health

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wike, L

    2005-06-01

    relative health of the ecosystem. The IBI, though originally for Midwestern streams, has been successfully adapted to other ecoregions and taxa (macroinvertebrates, Lombard and Goldstein, 2004) and has become an important tool for scientists and regulatory agencies alike in determining health of stream ecosystems. The IBI is a specific type of a larger group of methods and procedures referred to as Rapid Bioassessment (RBA). These protocols have the advantage of directly measuring the organisms affected by system perturbations, thus providing an integrated evaluation of system health because the organisms themselves integrate all aspects of their environment and its condition. In addition to the IBI, the RBA concept has also been applied to seep wetlands (Paller et al. 2005) and terrestrial systems (O'Connell et al. 1998, Kremen et al. 1993, Rodriguez et al. 1998, Rosenberg et al. 1986). Terrestrial RBA methods have lagged somewhat behind those for aquatic systems because terrestrial systems are less distinctly defined and seem to have a less universal distribution of an all-inclusive taxon, such as fish in the IBI, upon which to base an RBA. In the last decade, primarily in Australia, extensive development of an RBA using ant communities has shown great promise. Ants have the same advantage for terrestrial RBAs that fish do for aquatic systems in that they are an essential and ubiquitous component of virtually all terrestrial ecosystems. They occupy a broad range of niches, functional groups, and trophic levels and they possess one very important characteristic that makes them ideal for RBA because, similar to the fishes, there is a wide range of tolerance to conditions within the larger taxa. Within ant communities there are certain groups, genera, or species that may be very robust and abundant under even the harshest impacts. There are also taxa that are very sensitive to disturbance and change and their presence or absence is also indicative of the local

  19. Rapid Carbon Assessment Project: Data Summary and Availability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wills, Skye; Loecke, Terry; Roecker, Stephen; Beaudette, Dylan; Libohova, Zamir; Monger, Curtis; Lindbo, David

    2017-04-01

    The Rapid Carbon Assessment (RaCA) project was undertaken to estimate regional soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks across the conterminous United States (CONUS) as a one-time event. Sample locations were selected randomly using the NRI (National Resource Inventory) sampling framework covering all areas in CONUS with SSURGO certified maps as of Dec 2012. Within each of 17 regions, sites were selected by a combination of soil and land use/cover groups (LUGR). At each of more than 6,000 sites five pedons were described and sampled to a depth of 100cm (one central and 4 satellites 30m in each cardinal direction). There were 144,833 samples described from 32,084 pedons at 6, 017 sites. A combination of measurement and modeled bulk density was used for all samples. A visible near-infrared (VNIR) spectrophotometer was used to scan each sample for prediction of soil carbon contents. The samples of each central pedon were analyzed by the Kellogg Soil Survey Laboratory for combustion carbon and calcimeter inorganic carbon. SOC stocks were calculated for each pedon using a standard fixed depth technique to depths of 5, 30 and 100cm. Pedon SOC stocks were transformed to better approach normality before LUGR, regional and land use/cover summaries were calculated. The values reported are geometric means. A detailed spatial map can be produced using LUGR mean assignment to correlated pixels. LUGR values range from 1 to 3,000 Mg ha-1. While some artifacts are visible due to the stratified nature of sampling and extrapolation, the predictions are generally smooth and highlight some distinct geomorphic features including the sandhills in the Great Plains in the central US, mountainous regions in the West and coastal wetlands in the East. Regional averages range from 46 Mg ha-1 in the desert Southwest to 182 Mg ha-1 in the Northeast. Regional trends correlate to climate variables such as precipitation and potential evapotranspiration. While land use/cover classes vary in mean values

  20. COST IMPACT OF ROD CONSOLIDATION ON THE VIABILITY ASSESSMENT DESIGN

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D. Lancaster

    1999-03-29

    The cost impact to the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management System of using rod consolidation is evaluated. Previous work has demonstrated that the fuel rods of two assemblies can be packed into a canister that can fit into the same size space as that used to store a single assembly. The remaining fuel assembly hardware can be compacted into the same size canisters with a ratio of 1 hardware canister per each 6 to 12 assemblies. Transportation casks of the same size as currently available can load twice the number of assemblies by placing the compacted assemblies in the slots currently designed for a single assembly. Waste packages similarly could contain twice the number of assemblies; however, thermal constraints would require considering either a low burnup or cooling. The analysis evaluates the impact of rod consolidation on CRWMS costs for consolidation at prior to transportation and for consolidation at the Monitored Geological Repository surface facility. For this study, no design changes were made to either the transport casks or waste packages. Waste package designs used for the Viability Assessment design were employed but derated to make the thermal limits. A logistics analysis of the waste was performed to determine the number of each waste package with each loading. A review of past rod consolidation experience found cost estimates which range from $10/kgU to $32/kgU. $30/kgU was assumed for rod consolidation costs prior to transportation. Transportation cost savings are about $17/kgU and waste package cost savings are about $21/kgU. The net saving to the system is approximately $500 million if the consolidation is performed prior to transportation. If consolidation were performed at the repository surface facilities, it would cost approximately $15/kgU. No transportation savings would be realized. The net savings for consolidation at the repository site would be about $400 million dollars.

  1. Assessing the Cost of Global Biodiversity and Conservation Knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juffe-Bignoli, Diego; Brooks, Thomas M; Butchart, Stuart H M; Jenkins, Richard B; Boe, Kaia; Hoffmann, Michael; Angulo, Ariadne; Bachman, Steve; Böhm, Monika; Brummitt, Neil; Carpenter, Kent E; Comer, Pat J; Cox, Neil; Cuttelod, Annabelle; Darwall, William R T; Di Marco, Moreno; Fishpool, Lincoln D C; Goettsch, Bárbara; Heath, Melanie; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Hutton, Jon; Johnson, Tim; Joolia, Ackbar; Keith, David A; Langhammer, Penny F; Luedtke, Jennifer; Nic Lughadha, Eimear; Lutz, Maiko; May, Ian; Miller, Rebecca M; Oliveira-Miranda, María A; Parr, Mike; Pollock, Caroline M; Ralph, Gina; Rodríguez, Jon Paul; Rondinini, Carlo; Smart, Jane; Stuart, Simon; Symes, Andy; Tordoff, Andrew W; Woodley, Stephen; Young, Bruce; Kingston, Naomi

    2016-01-01

    Knowledge products comprise assessments of authoritative information supported by standards, governance, quality control, data, tools, and capacity building mechanisms. Considerable resources are dedicated to developing and maintaining knowledge products for biodiversity conservation, and they are widely used to inform policy and advise decision makers and practitioners. However, the financial cost of delivering this information is largely undocumented. We evaluated the costs and funding sources for developing and maintaining four global biodiversity and conservation knowledge products: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems, Protected Planet, and the World Database of Key Biodiversity Areas. These are secondary data sets, built on primary data collected by extensive networks of expert contributors worldwide. We estimate that US$160 million (range: US$116-204 million), plus 293 person-years of volunteer time (range: 278-308 person-years) valued at US$ 14 million (range US$12-16 million), were invested in these four knowledge products between 1979 and 2013. More than half of this financing was provided through philanthropy, and nearly three-quarters was spent on personnel costs. The estimated annual cost of maintaining data and platforms for three of these knowledge products (excluding the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems for which annual costs were not possible to estimate for 2013) is US$6.5 million in total (range: US$6.2-6.7 million). We estimated that an additional US$114 million will be needed to reach pre-defined baselines of data coverage for all the four knowledge products, and that once achieved, annual maintenance costs will be approximately US$12 million. These costs are much lower than those to maintain many other, similarly important, global knowledge products. Ensuring that biodiversity and conservation knowledge products are sufficiently up to date, comprehensive and accurate is fundamental to inform decision-making for

  2. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Lisianski, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  3. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Tau, American Samoa in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  4. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Farallon de Pajaros, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  5. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Rose, American Samoa in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  6. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Alamagan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  7. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Howland, Pacific Remote Island Areas in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  8. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at French Frigate, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  9. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Asuncion, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  10. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Pagan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  11. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Ofu & Olosega, American Samoa in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  12. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Molokai, Main Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  13. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Maug, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  14. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Kingman, Pacific Remote Island Areas in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  15. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Tutuila, American Samoa in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  16. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Wake, Pacific Remote Island Areas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  17. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Agrihan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  18. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Lanai, Main Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  19. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Kure, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  20. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Rota, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  1. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Hawaii, Main Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  2. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Kauai, Main Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  3. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Swains, American Samoa in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  4. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Guguan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  5. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Sarigan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  6. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Johnston, Pacific Remote Island Areas in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  7. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Aguijan, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  8. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Palmyra, Pacific Remote Island Areas in 2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  9. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Tinian, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  10. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Pearl & Hermes, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  11. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Maui, Main Hawaiian Islands in 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  12. CRED Rapid Ecological Assessment Line Point Intercept Survey of Benthic Parameter Assessments at Guam, Marianas in 2011

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Line point intercept (LPI) surveys and benthic composition assessments were conducted during Rapid Ecological Assessments (REA) as part of the Pacific Reef...

  13. The Cultural Dimensions of Freshwater Wetland Assessments: Lessons Learned from the Application of US Rapid Assessment Methods in France.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaucherand, Stéphanie; Schwoertzig, Eugénie; Clement, Jean-Christophe; Johnson, Brad; Quétier, Fabien

    2015-07-01

    Given the recent strengthening of wetland restoration and protection policies in France, there is need to develop rapid assessment methods that provide a cost-effective way to assess losses and gains of wetland functions. Such methods have been developed in the US and we tested six of them on a selection of contrasting wetlands in the Isère watershed. We found that while the methods could discriminate sites, they did not always give consistent rankings, thereby revealing the different assumptions they explicitly or implicitly incorporate. The US assessment methods commonly use notions of "old-growth" or "pristine" to define the benchmark conditions against which to assess wetlands. Any reference-based assessment developed in the US would need adaptation to work in the French context. This could be quite straightforward for the evaluation of hydrologic variables as scoring appears to be consistent with the best professional judgment of hydrologic condition made by a panel of French local experts. Approaches to rating vegetation condition and landscape context, however, would require substantial reworking to reflect a novel view of reference standard. Reference standard in the European context must include acknowledgement that many of the best condition and biologically important wetland types in France are the product of intensive, centuries-long management (mowing, grazing, etc.). They must also explicitly incorporate the recent trend in ecological assessment to focus particularly on the wetland's role in landscape-level connectivity. These context-specific, socio-cultural dimensions must be acknowledged and adjusted for when adapting or developing wetland assessment methods in new cultural contexts.

  14. Rapid ethnographic assessment of breastfeeding practices in periurban Mexico City.

    OpenAIRE

    Guerrero, M.L.; Morrow, R C; Calva, J.J.; Ortega-Gallegos, H.; Weller, S. C.; Ruiz-Palacios, G M; Morrow, A.L.

    1999-01-01

    Before carrying out a breastfeeding promotion programme in a periurban area of Mexico City, we conducted a rapid ethnographic study to determine the factors associated with absence of exclusive breastfeeding. The responses to pilot interviews were used to develop a standardized questionnaire regarding reasons for infant feeding choice, sources of advice, and barriers to breastfeeding. We interviewed a random sample of 150 mothers with a child < 5 years of age; 136 (91%) of them had initiated ...

  15. The cost effectiveness of rapid-acting insulin aspart compared with human insulin in type 2 diabetes patients: an analysis from the Japanese third-party payer perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollock, R F; Valentine, W J; Pilgaard, T; Nishimura, H

    2011-01-01

    The Nippon Ultra-Rapid Insulin and Diabetic Complication Evaluation Study (NICE Study) (NCT00575172) was a 5-year, open-label, randomised controlled trial which compared cardiovascular outcomes in Japanese type 2 diabetes patients intensively treated with regular human insulin or insulin aspart (NovoRapid; Novo Nordisk A/S, Bagsvaerd, Denmark), a rapid-acting insulin analogue. The aim of the present analysis was to evaluate the cost effectiveness of insulin aspart versus regular human insulin from the perspective of a Japanese third-party healthcare payer. A discrete event-simulation model was developed in Microsoft Excel to assess the within-trial cost effectiveness and make longer-term clinical projections in patients treated with regular human insulin or insulin aspart. In addition to severe hypoglycaemia, the model captured myocardial and cerebral infarction events and percutaneous coronary intervention and coronary artery bypass graft procedures. Within-trial mortality, incidence of severe hypoglycaemia and cardiovascular event probabilities were derived from the annual rates observed during the trial period, while post-trial outcomes were calculated using the event rates from the trial, adjusted for increasing patient age. Event costs were accounted from the healthcare payer perspective and expressed in 2008 Japanese yen (JPY), while health-related quality of life (HRQoL) was captured using event and state utilities. Future costs and clinical benefits were discounted at 3% annually. Life expectancy, quality-adjusted life expectancy, cardiovascular event rates and costs were evaluated over 5- and 10-year time horizons and sensitivity analyses were performed to assess variability in model outcomes. Over 5 years of treatment, insulin aspart dominated human insulin both in incremental life expectancy and in incremental quality-adjusted life-years (QALYS). Insulin aspart was associated with a small improvement in discounted life expectancy of 0.005 years (4.688 vs

  16. Rapid and low-cost prototyping of medical devices using 3D printed molds for liquid injection molding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Philip; Heller, J Alex; Etemadi, Mozziyar; Ottoson, Paige E; Liu, Jonathan A; Rand, Larry; Roy, Shuvo

    2014-06-27

    Biologically inert elastomers such as silicone are favorable materials for medical device fabrication, but forming and curing these elastomers using traditional liquid injection molding processes can be an expensive process due to tooling and equipment costs. As a result, it has traditionally been impractical to use liquid injection molding for low-cost, rapid prototyping applications. We have devised a method for rapid and low-cost production of liquid elastomer injection molded devices that utilizes fused deposition modeling 3D printers for mold design and a modified desiccator as an injection system. Low costs and rapid turnaround time in this technique lower the barrier to iteratively designing and prototyping complex elastomer devices. Furthermore, CAD models developed in this process can be later adapted for metal mold tooling design, enabling an easy transition to a traditional injection molding process. We have used this technique to manufacture intravaginal probes involving complex geometries, as well as overmolding over metal parts, using tools commonly available within an academic research laboratory. However, this technique can be easily adapted to create liquid injection molded devices for many other applications.

  17. Cost Model for Risk Assessment of Company Operation in Audit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. V.

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This article explores the approach to assessing the risk of company activities termination by building a cost model. This model gives auditors information on managers’ understanding of factors influencing change in the value of assets and liabilities, and the methods to identify it in more effective and reliable ways. Based on this information, the auditor can assess the adequacy of use of the assumption on continuity of company operation by management personnel when preparing financial statements. Financial uncertainty entails real manifestations of factors creating risks of the occurrence of costs, revenue losses due their manifestations, which in the long run can be a reason for termination of company operation, and, therefore, need to be foreseen in the auditor’s assessment of the adequacy of use of the continuity assumption when preparing financial statements by company management. The purpose of the study is to explore and develop a methodology for use of cost models to assess the risk of termination of company operation in audit. The issue of methodology for assessing the audit risk through analyzing methods for company valuation has not been dealt with. The review of methodologies for assessing the risks of termination of company operation in course of audit gives grounds for the conclusion that use of cost models can be an effective methodology for identification and assessment of such risks. The analysis of the above methods gives understanding of the existing system for company valuation, integrated into the management system, and the consequences of its use, i. e. comparison of the asset price data with the accounting data and the market value of the asset data. Overvalued or undervalued company assets may be a sign of future sale or liquidation of a company, which may signal on high probability of termination of company operation. A wrong choice or application of valuation methods can be indicative of the risk of non

  18. Rapid Assessment of Loiasis in parts of the Niger Delta, in Imo State ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The prevalence of loiasis was rapidly assessed based on the World Health Organisation RAPLOA technique in 24 rural communities of the Niger Delta Area of Imo State, Nigeria using 78-82 adults per community. The rapid assessment was based on history of eye worm and Calabar swellings from individual, as well as ...

  19. Geospatial Data Combined With The Automated Geospatial Watershed Assessment (AGWA) Tool For Rapid Post-Fire Watershed Assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodrich, D. C.; Clifford, T. J.; Guertin, D. P.; Sheppard, B. S.; Barlow, J. E.; Korgaonkar, Y.; Burns, I. S.; Unkrich, C. C.

    2016-12-01

    Wildfires disasters are common throughout the western US. While many feel fire suppression is the largest cost of wildfires, case studies note rehabilitation costs often equal or greatly exceed suppression costs. Using geospatial data sets, and post-fire burn severity products, coupled with the Automated Geospatial Watershed Assessment tool (AGWA - www.tucson.ars.ag.gov/agwa), the Dept. of Interior, Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) teams can rapidly analyze and identify at-risk areas to target rehabilitation efforts. AGWA employs nationally available geospatial elevation, soils, and land cover data to parameterize the KINEROS2 hydrology and erosion model. A pre-fire watershed simulation can be done prior to BAER deployment using design storms. As soon as the satellite-derived Burned Area Reflectance Classification (BARC) map is obtained, a post-fire watershed simulation using the same storm is conducted. The pre- and post-fire simulations can be spatially differenced in the GIS for rapid identification of high at-risk areas of erosion or flooding. This difference map is used by BAER teams to prioritize field observations and in-turn produce a final burn severity map that is used in AGWA/KINEROS2 simulations to provide report ready results. The 2013 Elk Wildfire Complex that burned over 52,600 ha east of Boise, Idaho provides a tangible example of how BAER experts combined AGWA and geospatial data that resulted in substantial rehabilitation cost savings. The BAER team initially, they identified approximately 6,500 burned ha for rehabilitation. The team then used the AGWA pre- and post-fire watershed simulation results, accessibility constraints, and land slope conditions in an interactive process to locate burned areas that posed the greatest threat to downstream values-at-risk. The group combined the treatable area, field observations, and the spatial results from AGWA to target seed and mulch treatments that most effectively reduced the threats. Using this

  20. Robotics in general surgery: A systematic cost assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gkegkes, Ioannis D.; Mamais, Ioannis A.; Iavazzo, Christos

    2017-01-01

    The utilisation of robotic-assisted techniques is a novelty in the field of general surgery. Our intention was to examine the up to date available literature on the cost assessment of robotic surgery of diverse operations in general surgery. PubMed and Scopus databases were searched in a systematic way to retrieve the included studies in our review. Thirty-one studies were retrieved, referring on a vast range of surgical operations. The mean cost for robotic, open and laparoscopic ranged from 2539 to 57,002, 7888 to 16,851 and 1799 to 50,408 Euros, respectively. The mean operative charges ranged from 273.74 to 13,670 Euros. More specifically, for the robotic and laparoscopic gastric fundoplication, the cost ranged from 1534 to 2257 and 657 to 763 Euros, respectively. For the robotic and laparoscopic colectomy, it ranged from 3739 to 17,080 and 3109 to 33,865 Euros, respectively. For the robotic and laparoscopic cholecystectomy, ranged from 1163.75 to 1291 and from 273.74 to 1223 Euros, respectively. The mean non-operative costs ranged from 900 to 48,796 from 8347 to 8800 and from 870 to 42,055 Euros, for robotic, open and laparoscopic technique, respectively. Conversions to laparotomy were present in 34/18,620 (0.18%) cases of laparoscopic and in 22/1488 (1.5%) cases of robotic technique. Duration of surgery robotic, open and laparoscopic ranged from 54.6 to 328.7, 129 to 234, and from 50.2 to 260 min, respectively. The present evidence reveals that robotic surgery, under specific conditions, has the potential to become cost-effective. Large number of cases, presence of industry competition and multidisciplinary team utilisation are some of the factors that could make more reasonable and cost-effective the robotic-assisted technique. PMID:28000648

  1. The Rapid Assessment Interface and Discharge service and its implications for patients with dementia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Singh I

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Inderpal Singh,1 Sharan Ramakrishna,1 Kathryn Williamson21Department of Geriatric Medicine, 2Department of Old Age Psychiatry, Ysbyty Ystrad Fawr, Ystrad Mynach, Caerphilly, United KingdomAbstract: The rising prevalence of dementia will have an effect on acute care hospitals around the world. At present, around 40% of patients older than 70 years with acute medical admissions have dementia, but only half of these patients have been diagnosed. Patients with dementia have poorer health outcomes, longer hospital stays, and higher rates of readmissions and institutionalization. Worldwide, health care budgets are severely constrained. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE has listed ten quality standards for supporting people in living well with dementia. NICE resource implications and commissioning support to implement these guidelines and improve dementia services have been recently published. Although most of the frail elderly patients with dementia are cared for by geriatricians, obstacles to making a diagnosis and to the management of dementia have been recognized. To provide a timely diagnosis of dementia, better care in acute hospital settings, and continuity of care in the community, services integrating all these elements are warranted. Extra resources also will be required for intermediate, palliative care, and mental health liaison services for people with dementia. The Birmingham Rapid Assessment Interface and Discharge service model uses a multiskilled team that provides comprehensive assessment of a person's physical and psychological well-being in a general hospital setting. It has been shown to be an effective model in terms of reducing both length of stay and avoiding readmission. The aim of this review is to discuss the implications of the Rapid Assessment Interface and Discharge model in people with dementia and to critically compare this model with similar published service provisions.Keywords: comorbidity, aged

  2. Life Cycle Assessment and Cost Analysis of Water and ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    changes in drinking and wastewater infrastructure need to incorporate a holistic view of the water service sustainability tradeoffs and potential benefits when considering shifts towards new treatment technology, decentralized systems, energy recovery and reuse of treated wastewater. The main goal of this study is to determine the influence of scale on the energy and cost performance of different transitional membrane bioreactors (MBR) in decentralized wastewater treatment (WWT) systems by performing a life cycle assessment (LCA) and cost analysis. LCA is a tool used to quantify sustainability-related metrics from a systems perspective. The study calculates the environmental and cost profiles of both aerobic MBRs (AeMBR) and anaerobic MBRs (AnMBR), which not only recover energy from waste, but also produce recycled water that can displace potable water for uses such as irrigation and toilet flushing. MBRs represent an intriguing technology to provide decentralized WWT services while maximizing resource recovery. A number of scenarios for these WWT technologies are investigated for different scale systems serving various population density and land area combinations to explore the ideal application potentials. MBR systems are examined from 0.05 million gallons per day (MGD) to 10 MGD and serve land use types from high density urban (100,000 people per square mile) to semi-rural single family (2,000 people per square mile). The LCA and cost model was built with ex

  3. The “jaundice hotline” for the rapid assessment of patients with jaundice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Jonathan; Hussaini, Hyder; McGovern, Dermot; Farrow, Richard; Maskell, Giles; Dalton, Harry

    2002-01-01

    Problem Patients with jaundice require rapid diagnosis and treatment, yet such patients are often subject to delay. Design An open referral, rapid access jaundice clinic was established by reorganisation of existing services and without the need for significant extra resources. Background and setting A large general hospital in a largely rural and geographically isolated area. Key measures for improvement Waiting times for referral, consultation, diagnosis, and treatment, length of stay in hospital, and general practitioners' and patients' satisfaction with the service. Strategies for change Referrals were made through a 24 hour telephone answering machine and fax line. Initial assessment of patients was carried out by junior staff as part of their working week. Dedicated ultrasonography appointments were made available. Effects of change Of 107 patients seen in the first year of the service, 62 had biliary obstruction. The mean time between referral and consultation was 2.5 days. Patients who went on to endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography waited 5.7 days on average. The mean length of stay in hospital in the 69 patients who were admitted was 6.1 days, compared with 11.5 days in 1996, as shown by audit data. Nearly all the 36 general practices (95%) and the 30 consecutive patients (97%) that were surveyed rated the service as above average or excellent. Lessons learnt An open referral, rapid access service for patients with jaundice can shorten time to diagnosis and treatment and length of stay in hospital. These improvements can occur through the reorganisation of existing services and with minimal extra cost. PMID:12142314

  4. Hospitalisation costs of metastatic melanoma in France; the MELISSA study (MELanoma In hoSpital coSts Assessment).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Jérôme; Bregman, Bruno; Combemale, Patrick; Amaz, Camille; de Léotoing, Lucie; Vainchtock, Alexandre; Gaudin, Anne-Françoise

    2017-08-08

    Management of metastatic melanoma is changing rapidly following the introduction of innovative effective therapies, with consequences for the allocation of healthcare resources. The objective of this study was to assess hospitalisation costs of metastatic melanoma in France from 2011 to 2013 from the perspective of the government payer. The population studied corresponded to all adults with metastatic melanoma hospitalised in France between 1st January 2011 and 31st December 2013 who required chemotherapy, immunotherapy or radiotherapy due to tumour progression and unresectable Stage III or Stage IV melanoma. Metastatic melanoma was identified by ICD-10 codes documented in the hospital patient discharge records. For each patient, hospital stays were stratified into a pre- or post- progression health state using proxy variables for the RECIST criteria. All healthcare expenditure documented in the French national hospital claims system database and incurred between the index hospitalisation (or change of progression state) and the end of follow-up were analysed. For the principal analysis, valuation of healthcare resource consumption was performed using official national hospitalisation tariffs. Any expensive therapy administered during the stay was documented from a linked database of expensive drugs (FICHCOMP). Seventy-eight thousand seven hundred fifty hospital stays by 10,337 patients with metastatic melanoma were identified over the three-year study period. Annual per capita costs of hospitalisation were € 5046 in the pre-progression stage and € 19,006 in the post-progression stage. Hospitalisations attributed to adverse drug reactions to chemotherapy or immunotherapy were observed in 27% of patients. Annual per capita costs of these hospitalisations related to adverse drug reactions were € 3762 in the pre-progression stage and € 5523 in the post-progression stage. Hospitalisation costs related to metastatic melanoma rise substantially as the disease

  5. The challenge of rapid diagnosis in oncology: Diagnostic accuracy and cost analysis of a large-scale one-stop breast clinic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delaloge, Suzette; Bonastre, Julia; Borget, Isabelle; Garbay, Jean-Rémi; Fontenay, Rachel; Boinon, Diane; Saghatchian, Mahasti; Mathieu, Marie-Christine; Mazouni, Chafika; Rivera, Sofia; Uzan, Catherine; André, Fabrice; Dromain, Clarisse; Boyer, Bruno; Pistilli, Barbara; Azoulay, Sandy; Rimareix, Françoise; Bayou, El-Hadi; Sarfati, Benjamin; Caron, Hélène; Ghouadni, Amal; Leymarie, Nicolas; Canale, Sandra; Mons, Muriel; Arfi-Rouche, Julia; Arnedos, Monica; Suciu, Voichita; Vielh, Philippe; Balleyguier, Corinne

    2016-10-01

    Rapid diagnosis is a key issue in modern oncology, for which one-stop breast clinics are a model. We aimed to assess the diagnosis accuracy and procedure costs of a large-scale one-stop breast clinic. A total of 10,602 individuals with suspect breast lesions attended the Gustave Roussy's regional one-stop breast clinic between 2004 and 2012. The multidisciplinary clinic uses multimodal imaging together with ultrasonography-guided fine needle aspiration for masses and ultrasonography-guided and stereotactic biopsies as needed. Diagnostic accuracy was assessed by comparing one-stop diagnosis to the consolidated diagnosis obtained after surgery or biopsy or long-term monitoring. The medical cost per patient of the care pathway was assessed from patient-level data collected prospectively. Sixty-nine percent of the patients had masses, while 31% had micro-calcifications or other non-mass lesions. In 75% of the cases (87% of masses), an exact diagnosis could be given on the same day. In the base-case analysis (i.e. considering only benign and malignant lesions at one-stop and at consolidated diagnoses), the sensitivity of the one-stop clinic was 98.4%, specificity 99.8%, positive and negative predictive values 99.7% and 99.0%. In the sensitivity analysis (reclassification of suspect, atypical and undetermined lesions), diagnostic sensitivity varied from 90.3% to 98.5% and specificity varied from 94.3% to 99.8%. The mean medical cost per patient of one-stop diagnostic procedure was €420. One-stop breast clinic can provide timely and cost-efficient delivery of highly accurate diagnoses and serve as models of care for multiple settings, including rapid screening-linked diagnosis. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Rapid and low-cost fabrication of polystyrene-based molds for PDMS microfluidic devices using a CO2 laser

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Huawei

    2011-11-01

    In this article, we described a rapid and low-cost method to fabricate polystyrene molds for PDMS microfluidic devices using a CO2 laser system. It takes only several minutes to fabricate the polystyrene mold with bump pattern on top of it using a CO2 laser system. The bump pattern can be easily transferred to PDMS and fabricate microchannles as deep as 3μm on PDMS. © (2012) Trans Tech Publications, Switzerland.

  7. Health Monitoring System Technology Assessments: Cost Benefits Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Renee M.; Murphy, Dennis A.

    2000-01-01

    The subject of sensor-based structural health monitoring is very diverse and encompasses a wide range of activities including initiatives and innovations involving the development of advanced sensor, signal processing, data analysis, and actuation and control technologies. In addition, it embraces the consideration of the availability of low-cost, high-quality contributing technologies, computational utilities, and hardware and software resources that enable the operational realization of robust health monitoring technologies. This report presents a detailed analysis of the cost benefit and other logistics and operational considerations associated with the implementation and utilization of sensor-based technologies for use in aerospace structure health monitoring. The scope of this volume is to assess the economic impact, from an end-user perspective, implementation health monitoring technologies on three structures. It specifically focuses on evaluating the impact on maintaining and supporting these structures with and without health monitoring capability.

  8. Space Transportation Systems Life Cycle Cost Assessment and Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, John W.; Rhodes, Russell E.; Zapata, Edgar; Levack, Daniel J. H.; Donahue, Benjaamin B.; Knuth, William

    2008-01-01

    Civil and military applications of space transportation have been pursued for just over 50 years and there has been, and still is, a need for safe, dependable, affordable, and sustainable space transportation systems. Fully expendable and partially reusable space transportation systems have been developed and put in operation that have not adequately achieved this need. Access to space is technically achievable, but presently very expensive and will remain so until there is a breakthrough in the way we do business. Since 1991 the national Space Propulsion Synergy Team (SPST) has reviewed and assessed the lessons learned from the major U.S. space programs of the past decades focusing on what has been learned from the assessment and control of Life Cycle Cost (LCC) from these systems. This paper presents the results of a selected number of studies and analyses that have been conducted by the SPST addressing the need, as well as the solutions, for improvement in LCC. The major emphasis of the SPST processes is on developing the space transportation system requirements first (up front). These requirements must include both the usual system flight performance requirements and also the system functional requirements, including the infrastructure on Earth's surface, in-space and on the Moon and Mars surfaces to determine LCC. This paper describes the development of specific innovative engineering and management approaches and processes. This includes a focus on flight hardware maturity for reliability, ground operations approaches, and business processes between contractor and government organizations. A major change in program/project cost control is being proposed by the SPST to achieve a sustainable space transportation system LCC - controlling cost as a program metric in addition to the existing practice of controlling performance and weight. Without a firm requirement and methodically structured cost control, it is unlikely that an affordable and sustainable space

  9. Cost Analysis of Water Transport for Climate Change Impact Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szaleniec, V.; Buytaert, W.

    2012-04-01

    It is expected that climate change will have a strong impact on water resources worldwide. Many studies exist that couple the output of global climate models with hydrological models to assess the impact of climate change on physical water availability. However, the water resources topology of many regions and especially that of cities can be very complex. Changes in physical water availability do therefore not translate easily into impacts on water resources for cities. This is especially the case for cities with a complex water supply topology, for instance because of geographical barriers, strong gradients in precipitation patterns, or competing water uses. In this study we explore the use of cost maps to enable the inclusion of water supply topologies in climate change impact studies. We use the city of Lima as a case study. Lima is the second largest desert city in the world. Although Peru as a whole has no water shortage, extreme gradients exist. Most of the economic activities including the city of Lima are located in the coastal desert. This region is geographically disconnected from the wet Amazon basin because of the Andes mountain range. Hence, water supply is precarious, provided by a complex combination of high mountain ecosystems including wetlands and glaciers, as well as groundwater aquifers depending on recharge from the mountains. We investigate the feasibility and costs of different water abstraction scenarios and the impact of climate change using cost functions for different resources. The option of building inter basins tunnels across the Andes is compared to the costs of desalinating seawater from the Pacific Ocean under different climate change scenarios and population growth scenarios. This approach yields recommendations for the most cost-effective options for the future.

  10. Quest for An Ideal, Simple and Cost-Effective Stain for Morphological Assessment of Sperms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lingappa, Hemalatha Anthanahalli; Govindashetty, Abhishek Mandya; Krishnamurthy, Anoosha; Puttaveerachary, Ashok Kagathur; Manchaiah, Sanjay; Shimoga, Indira Channagangappa; Mallaradhya, Sushma Hulikere; Gowda, Sarvesh Ballekoppa Mukunda

    2015-10-01

    Recent alarming trends of a substantial rise in the number of cases of infertility with as many as 30-40% being attributed to male-factor associated causes have created a need for further studies and advancements in semen analysis. Despite the focus on semen analysis over the years, assessment of sperm morphology has not been given due importance although it is a simple, standard and baseline diagnostic modality. It can be used to predict the need and outcome of Artificial Reproductive Techniques such as Invitro Fertilization, Gamete Intra Fallopian Tube Transfer and Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection. To find the ideal, simple and cost-effective basic stain for assessment of sperm morphology in a rural tertiary care set- up where advanced equipment for assessment of sperm morphometry are inaccessible. An updated way of determining sperm shape is called the Kruger's strict morphology method. Keeping this as the standard criterion, we studied semen samples of 62 healthy male subjects using four basic staining techniques and the consensus of four independent observers was tabulated. We found that Haematoxylin and Eosin stain was the best stain for assessment of sperm head morphology. Rapid Papanicolau stain was the most ideal, simple and cost-effective stain for overall assessment of sperm morphology. Sperm morphology assessment remains the baseline necessity for the diagnosis and management of male factor associated infertility when advanced techniques are unavailable, inaccessible or unaffordable.

  11. Assessing the Cost of Global Biodiversity and Conservation Knowledge.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Juffe-Bignoli

    Full Text Available Knowledge products comprise assessments of authoritative information supported by standards, governance, quality control, data, tools, and capacity building mechanisms. Considerable resources are dedicated to developing and maintaining knowledge products for biodiversity conservation, and they are widely used to inform policy and advise decision makers and practitioners. However, the financial cost of delivering this information is largely undocumented. We evaluated the costs and funding sources for developing and maintaining four global biodiversity and conservation knowledge products: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems, Protected Planet, and the World Database of Key Biodiversity Areas. These are secondary data sets, built on primary data collected by extensive networks of expert contributors worldwide. We estimate that US$160 million (range: US$116-204 million, plus 293 person-years of volunteer time (range: 278-308 person-years valued at US$ 14 million (range US$12-16 million, were invested in these four knowledge products between 1979 and 2013. More than half of this financing was provided through philanthropy, and nearly three-quarters was spent on personnel costs. The estimated annual cost of maintaining data and platforms for three of these knowledge products (excluding the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems for which annual costs were not possible to estimate for 2013 is US$6.5 million in total (range: US$6.2-6.7 million. We estimated that an additional US$114 million will be needed to reach pre-defined baselines of data coverage for all the four knowledge products, and that once achieved, annual maintenance costs will be approximately US$12 million. These costs are much lower than those to maintain many other, similarly important, global knowledge products. Ensuring that biodiversity and conservation knowledge products are sufficiently up to date, comprehensive and accurate is fundamental to inform

  12. Rapid Assessment of Contrast Sensitivity with Mobile Touch-screens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Jeffrey B.

    2013-01-01

    The availability of low-cost high-quality touch-screen displays in modern mobile devices has created opportunities for new approaches to routine visual measurements. Here we describe a novel method in which subjects use a finger swipe to indicate the transition from visible to invisible on a grating which is swept in both contrast and frequency. Because a single image can be swiped in about a second, it is practical to use a series of images to zoom in on particular ranges of contrast or frequency, both to increase the accuracy of the measurements and to obtain an estimate of the reliability of the subject. Sensitivities to chromatic and spatio-temporal modulations are easily measured using the same method. We will demonstrate a prototype for Apple Computer's iPad-iPod-iPhone family of devices, implemented using an open-source scripting environment known as QuIP (QUick Image Processing,

  13. Risk assessment and cost-effectiveness/utility analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busch, Michael; Walderhaug, Mark; Custer, Brian; Allain, Jean-Pierre; Reddy, Ravi; McDonough, Brian

    2009-04-01

    Decision-makers at all levels of public health and transfusion medicine have always assessed the risks and benefits of their decisions. Decisions are usually guided by immediately available information and a significant amount of experience and judgment. For decisions concerning familiar situations and common problems, judgment and experience may work quite well, but this type of decision process can lack clarity and accountability. Public health challenges are changing as emerging diseases and expensive technologies complicate the decision-makers' task, confronting the decision-maker with new problems that include multiple potential solutions. Decisions regarding policies and adoption of technologies are particularly complex in transfusion medicine due to the scope of the field, implications for public health, and legal, regulatory and public expectations regarding blood safety. To assist decision-makers, quantitative risk assessment and cost-effectiveness analysis are now being more widely applied. This set of articles will introduce risk assessment and cost-effectiveness methodologies and discuss recent applications of these methods in transfusion medicine.

  14. Rapid assessment of cataract surgical coverage in rural Zululand ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Objective. Cataract surgical coverage (CSC) is a useful indicator of the degree of success of a cataract intervention programme. However, because previously described methods are time-consuming and labour-intensive, they are rarely performed. This study describes a simple and inexpensive assessment of CSC based ...

  15. Developing Cost-Effective Field Assessments of Carbon Stocks in Human-Modified Tropical Forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berenguer, Erika; Gardner, Toby A; Ferreira, Joice; Aragão, Luiz E O C; Camargo, Plínio B; Cerri, Carlos E; Durigan, Mariana; Oliveira Junior, Raimundo C; Vieira, Ima C G; Barlow, Jos

    2015-01-01

    Across the tropics, there is a growing financial investment in activities that aim to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, such as REDD+. However, most tropical countries lack on-the-ground capacity to conduct reliable and replicable assessments of forest carbon stocks, undermining their ability to secure long-term carbon finance for forest conservation programs. Clear guidance on how to reduce the monetary and time costs of field assessments of forest carbon can help tropical countries to overcome this capacity gap. Here we provide such guidance for cost-effective one-off field assessments of forest carbon stocks. We sampled a total of eight components from four different carbon pools (i.e. aboveground, dead wood, litter and soil) in 224 study plots distributed across two regions of eastern Amazon. For each component we estimated survey costs, contribution to total forest carbon stocks and sensitivity to disturbance. Sampling costs varied thirty-one-fold between the most expensive component, soil, and the least, leaf litter. Large live stems (≥10 cm DBH), which represented only 15% of the overall sampling costs, was by far the most important component to be assessed, as it stores the largest amount of carbon and is highly sensitive to disturbance. If large stems are not taxonomically identified, costs can be reduced by a further 51%, while incurring an error in aboveground carbon estimates of only 5% in primary forests, but 31% in secondary forests. For rapid assessments, necessary to help prioritize locations for carbon- conservation activities, sampling of stems ≥20cm DBH without taxonomic identification can predict with confidence (R2 = 0.85) whether an area is relatively carbon-rich or carbon-poor-an approach that is 74% cheaper than sampling and identifying all the stems ≥10cm DBH. We use these results to evaluate the reliability of forest carbon stock estimates provided by the IPCC and FAO when applied to human-modified forests

  16. Developing Cost-Effective Field Assessments of Carbon Stocks in Human-Modified Tropical Forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berenguer, Erika; Gardner, Toby A.; Ferreira, Joice; Aragão, Luiz E. O. C.; Camargo, Plínio B.; Cerri, Carlos E.; Durigan, Mariana; Oliveira Junior, Raimundo C.; Vieira, Ima C. G.; Barlow, Jos

    2015-01-01

    Across the tropics, there is a growing financial investment in activities that aim to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, such as REDD+. However, most tropical countries lack on-the-ground capacity to conduct reliable and replicable assessments of forest carbon stocks, undermining their ability to secure long-term carbon finance for forest conservation programs. Clear guidance on how to reduce the monetary and time costs of field assessments of forest carbon can help tropical countries to overcome this capacity gap. Here we provide such guidance for cost-effective one-off field assessments of forest carbon stocks. We sampled a total of eight components from four different carbon pools (i.e. aboveground, dead wood, litter and soil) in 224 study plots distributed across two regions of eastern Amazon. For each component we estimated survey costs, contribution to total forest carbon stocks and sensitivity to disturbance. Sampling costs varied thirty-one-fold between the most expensive component, soil, and the least, leaf litter. Large live stems (≥10 cm DBH), which represented only 15% of the overall sampling costs, was by far the most important component to be assessed, as it stores the largest amount of carbon and is highly sensitive to disturbance. If large stems are not taxonomically identified, costs can be reduced by a further 51%, while incurring an error in aboveground carbon estimates of only 5% in primary forests, but 31% in secondary forests. For rapid assessments, necessary to help prioritize locations for carbon- conservation activities, sampling of stems ≥20cm DBH without taxonomic identification can predict with confidence (R2 = 0.85) whether an area is relatively carbon-rich or carbon-poor—an approach that is 74% cheaper than sampling and identifying all the stems ≥10cm DBH. We use these results to evaluate the reliability of forest carbon stock estimates provided by the IPCC and FAO when applied to human-modified forests

  17. Developing Cost-Effective Field Assessments of Carbon Stocks in Human-Modified Tropical Forests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika Berenguer

    Full Text Available Across the tropics, there is a growing financial investment in activities that aim to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, such as REDD+. However, most tropical countries lack on-the-ground capacity to conduct reliable and replicable assessments of forest carbon stocks, undermining their ability to secure long-term carbon finance for forest conservation programs. Clear guidance on how to reduce the monetary and time costs of field assessments of forest carbon can help tropical countries to overcome this capacity gap. Here we provide such guidance for cost-effective one-off field assessments of forest carbon stocks. We sampled a total of eight components from four different carbon pools (i.e. aboveground, dead wood, litter and soil in 224 study plots distributed across two regions of eastern Amazon. For each component we estimated survey costs, contribution to total forest carbon stocks and sensitivity to disturbance. Sampling costs varied thirty-one-fold between the most expensive component, soil, and the least, leaf litter. Large live stems (≥10 cm DBH, which represented only 15% of the overall sampling costs, was by far the most important component to be assessed, as it stores the largest amount of carbon and is highly sensitive to disturbance. If large stems are not taxonomically identified, costs can be reduced by a further 51%, while incurring an error in aboveground carbon estimates of only 5% in primary forests, but 31% in secondary forests. For rapid assessments, necessary to help prioritize locations for carbon- conservation activities, sampling of stems ≥20cm DBH without taxonomic identification can predict with confidence (R2 = 0.85 whether an area is relatively carbon-rich or carbon-poor-an approach that is 74% cheaper than sampling and identifying all the stems ≥10cm DBH. We use these results to evaluate the reliability of forest carbon stock estimates provided by the IPCC and FAO when applied to human

  18. A Rapid Physical Habitat Assessment of Wadeable Streams for Mixed-Land-Use Watersheds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lynne Hooper

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Mitigating stream and river impairment is complex, particularly in mixed-land-use watersheds given the likelihood of integrated responses of stream restoration to coupled and ongoing terrestrial ecosystem disturbance and the need for periodic reassessment and maintenance. Traditional biological sampling (e.g., macroinvertebrate sampling or other biological indices alone seldom identifies the cause of biological community impairment and large fiscal investments are often made with no apparent improvement to aquatic ecosystem health. A stream physical habitat assessment (PHA can yield information that, when paired with land-use data may reveal causal patterns in aquatic physical habitat degradation and help to identify sites for rehabilitation or restoration. A rapid and customizable physical habitat assessment method (rPHA is presented that reduces commonly high PHA time and labor costs while facilitating informative value. Sampling time is reduced to approximately 30–40 min per survey site with a crew of three individuals. The method is flexible and thus adaptable to varied applications and needs. The rPHA design facilitates replication at regular spatial and temporal intervals thereby informing land-use managers and agencies of current conditions and trends in habitat response to natural and anthropogenic stressors. The rPHA outcomes can thus provide science-based supplemental information to better inform management practices and stream restoration decisions in contemporary mixed-land-use watersheds.

  19. Rapid Mapping for Built Heritage at Risk Using Low-Cost and Cots Sensors. a Test in the Duomo Vecchio of San Severino Marche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calantropio, A.; Colucci, E.; Teppati Losè, L.

    2017-11-01

    In the last years, the researchers in the field of Geomatics have focused their attention in the experimentation and validation of new methodologies and techniques, stressing especially the potential of low-cost and COTS (Commercial Off The Shelf) solutions and sensors. In particular, these tools have been used with purposes of rapid mapping in different contexts (ranging from the construction industry, environmental monitoring, mining activities, etc.). The Built Heritage, due to its intrinsic nature of endangered artefact, can largely benefit from the technological and methodological innovations in this research field. The contribute presented in this paper will highlight these main topics: the rapid mapping of the Built Heritage (in particular the one subjected to different types of risk) using low-cost and COTS solutions. Different sensors and techniques were chosen to be evaluated on a specific test site: the Duomo Vecchio of San Severino Marche (MC - Italy), that was partially affected by the earthquake swarm that hit the area of Central Italy starting from the 24th of August 2016. One of the main aims of this work is to demonstrate how low-cost and COTS sensors can contribute to the documentation of the Built Heritage for its safeguard, for damage assessment in case of disastrous events and operations of restoration and preservation.

  20. Rapid assessment of disaster damage using social media activity

    OpenAIRE

    Kryvasheyeu, Yury; Chen, Haohui; Obradovich, Nick; Moro, Esteban; Van Hentenryck, Pascal; Fowler, James; Cebrian, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Could social media data aid in disaster response and damage assessment? Countries face both an increasing frequency and an increasing intensity of natural disasters resulting from climate change. During such events, citizens turn to social media platforms for disaster-related communication and information. Social media improves situational awareness, facilitates dissemination of emergency information, enables early warning systems, and helps coordinate relief efforts. In addition, the spatiot...

  1. Costs without benefits? Methodological issues in assessing costs, benefits and effectiveness of water protection policies. Paper

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Walz, R.; Schleich, J.

    2000-07-01

    In the last few years, the conditions for extending environmental policy in general and policy dealing with the prevention of water pollution in particular have undergone extensive changes. On the one hand, there has been indisputable considerable success in preventing water pollution which has led to less direct pressure for policy action. On the other hand, the rising sewage levies and the lower political priority assigned in general to environmental policy documented in, e. g. public opinion surveys, has led to water pollution control policy facing very different pressures of justification: more efficient use of funds, improved planning processes, proof of the achievable benefit, but also stopping the increase in levies or not hindering economic development, these or similar slogans are the objections brought against water pollution control. Regardless of how unambiguous these terms appear when used as slogans in this way, they become diffuse and unclear if regarded more closely. This paper therefore attempts to reveal the reasons for possible misunderstandings and misinterpretations on the one hand and, on the other, to reveal the basic problems and uncertainties which are necessarily linked with an assessment of costs and benefits. In order to do this, three areas are examined: level of actors and analysis, evaluation methods and assessment of costs and benefits. (orig.)

  2. Rapid assessment of cataract blindness in an urban district of Gujarat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Limburg Hans

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: To estimate the prevalence of bilateral cataract blindness in persons ≥50 years of age in Ahmedabad district, Gujarat. Methods: A total of 1,962 persons ≥50 years of age were examined in clusters of 45 people or less. The survey design used a systematic random cluster sampling. The sample size was calculated assuming a prevalence of bilateral cataract blindness (visual acuity <3/60 of at least 3% and design effect of 1.6, to estimate the actual prevalence of cataract blindness with a sampling error of ≤20 at 80% confidence level. Visual acuity was assessed with glasses, where available, and pinhole was used for visual acuity <6/18. Distant direct ophthalmoscopy in semidark condition with undilated pupil was used to assess the lens status. Results: The age-gender-adjusted prevalence of all blindness was 2.9% in persons ≥50 years of age (6.7% for visual acuity<6/60. The age-gender-adjusted prevalence of bilateral cataract blindness ( visual acuity <3/60 was 1.2% in persons ≥50 years of age. For visual acuity <6/60, the prevalence was 3.1%. The prevalence in females was slightly higher than in males. The prevalence of bilateral and unilateral aphakia and pseudophakia was high. The cataract surgical coverage, an indicator for coverage and service utilization, was 92.9% for persons and 83.1% for eyes. Conclusion: Rapid assessment of cataract blindness in persons ≥50 years of age can be conducted in urban settings with existing resources and at affodable costs, to provide district level data for assessment and monitoring of cataract intervention programs.

  3. Assessment of compost application to coal ash disposal sites to promote the rapid vegetation establishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repmann, F.; Slazak, A.; Babic, M.; Schneider, B. U.; Schaaf, W.; Hüttl, R. F.

    2009-04-01

    In the city of Tuzla, located in Bosnia and Herzegovina, a coal fired thermo electric power plant is operated by the company JP ELEKTROPRIVERDA BIH TERMOELEKTRANA "TUZLA". High amounts of ash are produced by the power plant, which are currently disposed into settlement ponds bordered by dams in natural valleys. A total of four ash disposal sites covering an area of approx. 170 ha have been established during the last decades. Due to the fact that residual ash from coal combustion was found to contain a variety of trace elements (Ni, Cr, As, B), it must be assumed that ash disposal of that magnitude constitutes an environmental problem which is investigated within the EU-FP6 / STREP project "Reintegration of Coal Ash Disposal Sites and Mitigation of Pollution in the West Balkan Area" RECOAL. The main hazards relate to soil and groundwater contamination due to leaching toxins, dust dispersion, and toxins entering the food chain as these disposal sites are used for agricultural purposes. In order to rapidly establish a vegetation cover on barren ash dumps that particularly would prevent dust erosion we assessed the applicability of compost, produced from locally available municipal and industrial organic residues as an amendment to ash to improve substrate fertility. The envisaged remediation technology was considered to be a low cost, easy applicable and rapid method capable of substantially enhancing living conditions of residents in the vicinity of the abandoned disposal sites. Various compost application rates were evaluated in the field on experimental site Divkovici I in Tuzla and additionally in the greenhouse environment at Brandenburg Technical University Cottbus. Field and laboratory tests revealed that plant growth and cover rate can substantially be improved by mixing compost into the upper ash layer to a maximum depth of approx. 20 cm. Besides direct growth observations in the field analysis of soil parameters gave evidence that the fertility of ashy

  4. Low-cost oblique illumination: an image quality assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Santaquiteria, Jesus; Espinosa-Aranda, Jose Luis; Deniz, Oscar; Sanchez, Carlos; Borrego-Ramos, Maria; Blanco, Saul; Cristobal, Gabriel; Bueno, Gloria

    2018-01-01

    We study the effectiveness of several low-cost oblique illumination filters to improve overall image quality, in comparison with standard bright field imaging. For this purpose, a dataset composed of 3360 diatom images belonging to 21 taxa was acquired. Subjective and objective image quality assessments were done. The subjective evaluation was performed by a group of diatom experts by psychophysical test where resolution, focus, and contrast were assessed. Moreover, some objective nonreference image quality metrics were applied to the same image dataset to complete the study, together with the calculation of several texture features to analyze the effect of these filters in terms of textural properties. Both image quality evaluation methods, subjective and objective, showed better results for images acquired using these illumination filters in comparison with the no filtered image. These promising results confirm that this kind of illumination filters can be a practical way to improve the image quality, thanks to the simple and low cost of the design and manufacturing process. (2018) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).

  5. Manufacturing of Low Cost, Durable Membrane Electrode Assemblies Engineered for Rapid Conditioning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Busby, Colin [W. L. Gore & Associates Inc., Newark, DE (United States)

    2017-05-23

    Over the past 20 years significant progress in membrane-electrode assembly (MEA) technology development for polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEMFCs) has resulted in the PEMFC technology approaching a commercial reality for transportation applications. However, there remain two primary technical challenges to be addressed in the MEA. First and foremost is meeting the automotive cost targets: Producing a fuel cell stack cost competitive with today’s internal combustion engine. In addition to the material cost, MEA (and other components) and stack assembly production methods must be amenable for use in low cost, high speed, automotive assembly line. One impediment to this latter goal is that stack components must currently go through a long and tedious conditioning procedure before they produce optimal power. This so-called “break-in” can take many hours, and can involve quite complex voltage, temperature and/or pressure steps. These break-in procedures must be simplified and the time required reduced if fuel cells are to become a viable automotive engine. The second challenge is to achieve the durability targets in real-world automotive duty cycle operations. Significant improvements in cost, break-in time, and durability for the key component of fuel cell stacks, MEAs were achieved in this project. Advanced modeling was used to guide design of the new MEA to maximize performance and durability. A new, innovative process and manufacturing approach utilizing direct in-line coating using scalable, cost-competitive, continuous high volume 3-layer rolled-good manufacturing processes was developed and validated by single cell and short stack testing. In addition, the direct coating methods employed were shown to reduce the cost for sacrificial films. Furthermore, Gore has demonstrated a 10 µm reinforced membrane that is used in the new low-cost process and can meet automotive power density and durability targets. Across a wide range of operating conditions, the

  6. Cost-effectiveness of malaria microscopy and rapid diagnostic tests versus presumptive diagnosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Batwala, Vincent; Magnussen, Pascal; Hansen, Kristian Schultz

    2011-01-01

    at rural operational primary care centres. METHODS: Three health centres (HCs) were randomized to three diagnostic arms (microscopy, RDT and presumptive diagnosis) in a district of low and another of high malaria transmission intensities in Uganda. Some 22,052 patients presenting with fever at outpatients...... departments were enrolled from March 2010 to February 2011. Of these, a random sample of 1,627 was selected to measure additional socio-economic characteristics. Costing was performed following the standard step-down cost allocation and the ingredients approach. Effectiveness was measured as the number...

  7. Hawaii Coral Reef Assessment and Monitoring Program (CRAMP): Benthic Data from Rapid Assessment Transects Maui 2006 (NODC Accession 0039383)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset consists of CRAMP Rapid Assessment Transect surveys taken in 2006 and includes quantitative estimates of substrate type and species. In 2006, there were...

  8. Hawaii Coral Reef Assessment and Monitoring Program (CRAMP): Benthic Data from Rapid Assessment Transects 2001-2004 (NODC Accession 0002464)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset consists of CRAMP Rapid Assessment Transect surveys taken in 2001-2004 and includes quantitative estimates of substrate type and species. The types and...

  9. Rapid Damage Assessment by Means of Multi-Temporal SAR — A Comprehensive Review and Outlook to Sentinel-1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Plank

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Fast crisis response after natural disasters, such as earthquakes and tropical storms, is necessary to support, for instance, rescue, humanitarian, and reconstruction operations in the crisis area. Therefore, rapid damage mapping after a disaster is crucial, i.e., to detect the affected area, including grade and type of damage. Thereby, satellite remote sensing plays a key role due to its fast response, wide field of view, and low cost. With the increasing availability of remote sensing data, numerous methods have been developed for damage assessment. This article gives a comprehensive review of these techniques focusing on multi-temporal SAR procedures for rapid damage assessment: interferometric coherence and intensity correlation. The review is divided into six parts: First, methods based on coherence; second, the ones using intensity correlation; and third, techniques using both methodologies combined to increase the accuracy of the damage assessment are reviewed. Next, studies using additional data (e.g., GIS and optical imagery to support the damage assessment and increase its accuracy are reported. Moreover, selected studies on post-event SAR damage assessment techniques and examples of other applications of the interferometric coherence are presented. Then, the preconditions for a successful worldwide application of multi-temporal SAR methods for damage assessment and the limitations of current SAR satellite missions are reported. Finally, an outlook to the Sentinel-1 SAR mission shows possible solutions of these limitations, enabling a worldwide applicability of the presented damage assessment methods.

  10. Benthic data from rapid assessment transects, 2001-2004, in the Hawaiian Islands (NODC Accession 0002464)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset consists of CRAMP Rapid Assessment Transect surveys taken in 2001-2004 and includes quantitative estimates of substrate type and species. The types and...

  11. Methodology for Computer-aided, Interactive Rapid Assessment of Local or Regional Stress Fields on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colton, S. L.; Ferrill, D. A.; Sims, D. W.; Wyrick, D. Y.; Franklin, N. M.

    2003-03-01

    We present a method for rapid assessment of stress fields on Mars: (i) mapping geologic structures, (ii) calculating stress fields, and (iii) determining resolved stresses on faults. Preliminary results are presented for northern Utopia Planitia.

  12. Rapid forest carbon assessments of oceanic islands: a case study of the Hawaiian archipelago

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory P. Asner

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Spatially explicit forest carbon (C monitoring aids conservation and climate change mitigation efforts, yet few approaches have been developed specifically for the highly heterogeneous landscapes of oceanic island chains that continue to undergo rapid and extensive forest C change. We developed an approach for rapid mapping of aboveground C density (ACD; units = Mg or metric tons C ha−1 on islands at a spatial resolution of 30 m (0.09 ha using a combination of cost-effective airborne LiDAR data and full-coverage satellite data. We used the approach to map forest ACD across the main Hawaiian Islands, comparing C stocks within and among islands, in protected and unprotected areas, and among forests dominated by native and invasive species. Results Total forest aboveground C stock of the Hawaiian Islands was 36 Tg, and ACD distributions were extremely heterogeneous both within and across islands. Remotely sensed ACD was validated against U.S. Forest Service FIA plot inventory data (R2 = 0.67; RMSE = 30.4 Mg C ha−1. Geospatial analyses indicated the critical importance of forest type and canopy cover as predictors of mapped ACD patterns. Protection status was a strong determinant of forest C stock and density, but we found complex environmentally mediated responses of forest ACD to alien plant invasion. Conclusions A combination of one-time airborne LiDAR data acquisition and satellite monitoring provides effective forest C mapping in the highly heterogeneous landscapes of the Hawaiian Islands. Our statistical approach yielded key insights into the drivers of ACD variation, and also makes possible future assessments of C storage change, derived on a repeat basis from free satellite data, without the need for additional LiDAR data. Changes in C stocks and densities of oceanic islands can thus be continually assessed in the face of rapid environmental changes such as biological invasions, drought, fire and land use

  13. Rapid forest carbon assessments of oceanic islands: a case study of the Hawaiian archipelago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asner, Gregory P; Sousan, Sinan; Knapp, David E; Selmants, Paul C; Martin, Roberta E; Hughes, R Flint; Giardina, Christian P

    2016-12-01

    Spatially explicit forest carbon (C) monitoring aids conservation and climate change mitigation efforts, yet few approaches have been developed specifically for the highly heterogeneous landscapes of oceanic island chains that continue to undergo rapid and extensive forest C change. We developed an approach for rapid mapping of aboveground C density (ACD; units = Mg or metric tons C ha-1) on islands at a spatial resolution of 30 m (0.09 ha) using a combination of cost-effective airborne LiDAR data and full-coverage satellite data. We used the approach to map forest ACD across the main Hawaiian Islands, comparing C stocks within and among islands, in protected and unprotected areas, and among forests dominated by native and invasive species. Total forest aboveground C stock of the Hawaiian Islands was 36 Tg, and ACD distributions were extremely heterogeneous both within and across islands. Remotely sensed ACD was validated against U.S. Forest Service FIA plot inventory data (R2 = 0.67; RMSE = 30.4 Mg C ha-1). Geospatial analyses indicated the critical importance of forest type and canopy cover as predictors of mapped ACD patterns. Protection status was a strong determinant of forest C stock and density, but we found complex environmentally mediated responses of forest ACD to alien plant invasion. A combination of one-time airborne LiDAR data acquisition and satellite monitoring provides effective forest C mapping in the highly heterogeneous landscapes of the Hawaiian Islands. Our statistical approach yielded key insights into the drivers of ACD variation, and also makes possible future assessments of C storage change, derived on a repeat basis from free satellite data, without the need for additional LiDAR data. Changes in C stocks and densities of oceanic islands can thus be continually assessed in the face of rapid environmental changes such as biological invasions, drought, fire and land use. Such forest monitoring information can be used to promote

  14. Assessment of changes in smile after rapid maxillary expansion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Paula Morales Cobra de Carvalho

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: This study evaluated changes in the smile characteristics of patients with maxillary constriction submitted to rapid maxillary expansion (RME. METHODS: The sample consisted of 81 extraoral photographs of maximum smile of 27 patients with mean age of 10 years, before expansion and 3 and 6 months after fixation of the expanding screw. The photographs were analyzed on the software Cef X 2001, with achievement of the following measurements: Transverse smile area, buccal corridors, exposure of maxillary incisors, gingival exposure of maxillary incisors, smile height, upper and lower lip thickness, smile symmetry and smile arch. Statistical analysis was performed by analysis of variance (ANOVA, at a significance level of 5%. RESULTS: RME promoted statistically significant increase in the transverse smile dimension and exposure of maxillary central and lateral incisors; maintenance of right and left side smile symmetry and of the lack of parallelism between the curvature of the maxillary incisal edges and lower lip border. CONCLUSIONS: RME was beneficial for the smile esthetics with the increase of the transverse smile dimension and exposure of maxillary central and lateral incisors.INTRODUÇÃO: esse estudo avaliou as alterações das características do sorriso de pacientes com atresia maxilar submetidos à expansão rápida da maxila (ERM. MÉTODOS: a amostra consistiu de 81 fotografias extrabucais do sorriso máximo de 27 pacientes, com idade média de 10 anos, antes da expansão e aos três e seis meses após a fixação do parafuso expansor. As análises das fotografias foram realizadas por meio do programa Cef X 2001, e as seguintes medidas foram analisadas: dimensão transversal do sorriso, corredores bucais, quantidade de exposição dos incisivos superiores, exposição gengival dos incisivos superiores, altura do sorriso, espessuras dos lábios superior e inferior, simetria e arco do sorriso. As alterações no sorriso durante

  15. A rapid and low-cost DNA extraction method for isolating ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The price of commercial DNA extraction methods makes the routine use of polymerase chain reaction amplification (PCR) based methods rather costly for scientists in developing countries. A guanidium thiocayante-based DNA extraction method was investigated in this study for the isolation of Escherichia coli (E. coli) DNA ...

  16. Preliminary feasibility studies in times of rapid cost escalation. [Oil shale and tar sand industries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliver, E.D.; Moll, A.J.

    1976-01-01

    Not the least of the problems delaying the development and commercialization of synthetic fuel processes has been the extraordinary escalation of cost estimates by factors of up to ten in the past eight years. This study identifies and analyzes some of the most important contributing factors that have converged in the last few years. These factors include overoptimism and ill-defined project scope in the early stages, tightening environmental controls, difficulties in obtaining raw materials and fuels, general inflationary trends, ''hyperinflation'' of the costs of critical equipment, local labor shortages, and increased times required for procurement and construction. Cost increases have been particularly dramatic for ''offsites,'' liberally defined as nonprocess related parts of projects. Case histories of oil shale and tar sand developments are analyzed. Learning curves of costs during development and commercial use are studied. The analysis suggests that the worst of the extraordinary increases (above general inflationary trends) are probably over. Criteria to judge the state of development of processes are given, and some procedures to avoid future pitfalls are suggested.

  17. Dimensional Error in Rapid Prototyping with Open Source Software and Low-cost 3D-printer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rendón-Medina, Marco A; Andrade-Delgado, Laura; Telich-Tarriba, Jose E; Fuente-Del-Campo, Antonio; Altamirano-Arcos, Carlos A

    2018-01-01

    Rapid prototyping models (RPMs) had been extensively used in craniofacial and maxillofacial surgery, especially in areas such as orthognathic surgery, posttraumatic or oncological reconstructions, and implantology. Economic limitations are higher in developing countries such as Mexico, where resources dedicated to health care are limited, therefore limiting the use of RPM to few selected centers. This article aims to determine the dimensional error of a low-cost fused deposition modeling 3D printer (Tronxy P802MA, Shenzhen, Tronxy Technology Co), with Open source software. An ordinary dry human mandible was scanned with a computed tomography device. The data were processed with open software to build a rapid prototype with a fused deposition machine. Linear measurements were performed to find the mean absolute and relative difference. The mean absolute and relative difference was 0.65 mm and 1.96%, respectively ( P = 0.96). Low-cost FDM machines and Open Source Software are excellent options to manufacture RPM, with the benefit of low cost and a similar relative error than other more expensive technologies.

  18. A novel low-cost mobile robot for rapid prototyping of precision farming applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kjeld; Neerup, Mathias Mikkel; Larsen, Leon Bonde

    field experiments using field robots which is typically a demanding task in terms of time consumption and logistics. Small indoor robots are sometimes used to emulate the larger field robots which allows for rapid prototyping and intermediate testing in the laboratory before moving to the field...... experiments. In this work we present a novel FrobitPro robot platform designed for rapid prototyping of FroboMind field robot applications. FrobitPro has a fundamental design similar to many current wheeled and tracked robots such as the Kongskilde Robotti, and the workflow of migrating from simulation...... to FrobitPro to field robot is therefore merely a matter of using different low level interface components. The FrobitPro robot is capable of carrying larger sensors such as RTK- GNSS, LIDAR and 3d stereo vision cameras. The platform supports interchangeable wheels for accurate indoor driving as well...

  19. Low-cost rapid prototyping of flexible plastic paper based microfluidic devices

    KAUST Repository

    Fan, Yiqiang

    2013-04-01

    This research presents a novel rapid prototyping method for paper-based flexible microfluidic devices. The microchannels were fabricated using laser ablation on a piece of plastic paper (permanent paper), the dimensions of the microchannels was carefully studied for various laser powers and scanning speeds. After laser ablation of the microchannels on the plastic paper, a transparent poly (methyl methacrylate)(PMMA) film was thermally bonded to the plastic paper to enclose the channels. After connection of tubing, the device was ready to use. An example microfluidic device (droplet generator) was also fabricated using this technique. Due to the flexibility of the fabricated device, this technique can be used to fabricate 3D microfluidic devices. The fabrication process was simple and rapid without any requirement of cleanroom facilities. © 2013 IEEE.

  20. Cost-effectiveness analysis of malaria rapid diagnostic tests for appropriate treatment of malaria at the community level in Uganda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Kristian S; Ndyomugyenyi, Richard; Magnussen, Pascal; Lal, Sham; Clarke, Siân E

    2017-06-01

    In Sub-Saharan Africa, malaria remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality among children under 5, due to lack of access to prompt and appropriate diagnosis and treatment. Many countries have scaled-up community health workers (CHWs) as a strategy towards improving access. The present study was a cost-effectiveness analysis of the introduction of malaria rapid diagnostic tests (mRDTs) performed by CHWs in two areas of moderate-to-high and low malaria transmission in rural Uganda. CHWs were trained to perform mRDTs and treat children with artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) in the intervention arm while CHWs offered treatment based on presumptive diagnosis in the control arm. Data on the proportion of children with fever 'appropriately treated for malaria with ACT' were captured from a randomised trial. Health sector costs included: training of CHWs, community sensitisation, supervision, allowances for CHWs and provision of mRDTs and ACTs. The opportunity costs of time utilised by CHWs were estimated based on self-reporting. Household costs of subsequent treatment-seeking at public health centres and private health providers were captured in a sample of households. mRDTs performed by CHWs was associated with large improvements in appropriate treatment of malaria in both transmission settings. This resulted in low incremental costs for the health sector at US$3.0 per appropriately treated child in the moderate-to-high transmission area. Higher incremental costs at US$13.3 were found in the low transmission area due to lower utilisation of CHW services and higher programme costs. Incremental costs from a societal perspective were marginally higher. The use of mRDTs by CHWs improved the targeting of ACTs to children with malaria and was likely to be considered a cost-effective intervention compared to a presumptive diagnosis in the moderate-to-high transmission area. In contrast to this, in the low transmission area with low attendance, RDT use by CHWs was

  1. Integrating Low-Cost Rapid Usability Testing into Agile System Development of Healthcare IT: A Methodological Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kushniruk, Andre W; Borycki, Elizabeth M

    2015-01-01

    The development of more usable and effective healthcare information systems has become a critical issue. In the software industry methodologies such as agile and iterative development processes have emerged to lead to more effective and usable systems. These approaches highlight focusing on user needs and promoting iterative and flexible development practices. Evaluation and testing of iterative agile development cycles is considered an important part of the agile methodology and iterative processes for system design and re-design. However, the issue of how to effectively integrate usability testing methods into rapid and flexible agile design cycles has remained to be fully explored. In this paper we describe our application of an approach known as low-cost rapid usability testing as it has been applied within agile system development in healthcare. The advantages of the integrative approach are described, along with current methodological considerations.

  2. Assessment of socioeconomic costs to China's air pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Yang; Guan, Dabo; Jiang, Xujia; Peng, Liqun; Schroeder, Heike; Zhang, Qiang

    2016-08-01

    Particulate air pollution has had a significant impact on human health in China and it is associated with cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and high mortality and morbidity. These health impacts could be translated to reduced labor availability and time. This paper utilized a supply-driven input-output (I-O) model to estimate the monetary value of total output losses resulting from reduced working time caused by diseases related to air pollution across 30 Chinese provinces in 2007. Fine particulate matter (PM2.5) pollution was used as an indicator to assess impacts to health caused by air pollution. The developed I-O model is able to capture both direct economic costs and indirect cascading effects throughout inter-regional production supply chains and the indirect effects greatly outnumber the direct effects in most Chinese provinces. Our results show the total economic losses of 346.26 billion Yuan (approximately 1.1% of the national GDP) based on the number of affected Chinese employees (72 million out of a total labor population of 712 million) whose work time in years was reduced because of mortality, hospital admissions and outpatient visits due to diseases resulting from PM2.5 air pollution in 2007. The loss is almost the annual GDP of Vietnam in 2010. The proposed modelling approach provides an alternative method for health-cost measurement with additional insights on inter-industrial and inter-regional linkages along production supply chains.

  3. Screening and Rapid Molecular Diagnosis of Tuberculosis in Prisons in Russia and Eastern Europe: A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winetsky, Daniel E.; Negoescu, Diana M.; DeMarchis, Emilia H.; Almukhamedova, Olga; Dooronbekova, Aizhan; Pulatov, Dilshod; Vezhnina, Natalia; Owens, Douglas K.; Goldhaber-Fiebert, Jeremy D.

    2012-01-01

    Background Prisons of the former Soviet Union (FSU) have high rates of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) and are thought to drive general population tuberculosis (TB) epidemics. Effective prison case detection, though employing more expensive technologies, may reduce long-term treatment costs and slow MDR-TB transmission. Methods and Findings We developed a dynamic transmission model of TB and drug resistance matched to the epidemiology and costs in FSU prisons. We evaluated eight strategies for TB screening and diagnosis involving, alone or in combination, self-referral, symptom screening, mass miniature radiography (MMR), and sputum PCR with probes for rifampin resistance (Xpert MTB/RIF). Over a 10-y horizon, we projected costs, quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), and TB and MDR-TB prevalence. Using sputum PCR as an annual primary screening tool among the general prison population most effectively reduced overall TB prevalence (from 2.78% to 2.31%) and MDR-TB prevalence (from 0.74% to 0.63%), and cost US$543/QALY for additional QALYs gained compared to MMR screening with sputum PCR reserved for rapid detection of MDR-TB. Adding sputum PCR to the currently used strategy of annual MMR screening was cost-saving over 10 y compared to MMR screening alone, but produced only a modest reduction in MDR-TB prevalence (from 0.74% to 0.69%) and had minimal effect on overall TB prevalence (from 2.78% to 2.74%). Strategies based on symptom screening alone were less effective and more expensive than MMR-based strategies. Study limitations included scarce primary TB time-series data in FSU prisons and uncertainties regarding screening test characteristics. Conclusions In prisons of the FSU, annual screening of the general inmate population with sputum PCR most effectively reduces TB and MDR-TB prevalence, doing so cost-effectively. If this approach is not feasible, the current strategy of annual MMR is both more effective and less expensive than strategies using self

  4. Screening and rapid molecular diagnosis of tuberculosis in prisons in Russia and Eastern Europe: a cost-effectiveness analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel E Winetsky

    Full Text Available Prisons of the former Soviet Union (FSU have high rates of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB and are thought to drive general population tuberculosis (TB epidemics. Effective prison case detection, though employing more expensive technologies, may reduce long-term treatment costs and slow MDR-TB transmission.We developed a dynamic transmission model of TB and drug resistance matched to the epidemiology and costs in FSU prisons. We evaluated eight strategies for TB screening and diagnosis involving, alone or in combination, self-referral, symptom screening, mass miniature radiography (MMR, and sputum PCR with probes for rifampin resistance (Xpert MTB/RIF. Over a 10-y horizon, we projected costs, quality-adjusted life years (QALYs, and TB and MDR-TB prevalence. Using sputum PCR as an annual primary screening tool among the general prison population most effectively reduced overall TB prevalence (from 2.78% to 2.31% and MDR-TB prevalence (from 0.74% to 0.63%, and cost US$543/QALY for additional QALYs gained compared to MMR screening with sputum PCR reserved for rapid detection of MDR-TB. Adding sputum PCR to the currently used strategy of annual MMR screening was cost-saving over 10 y compared to MMR screening alone, but produced only a modest reduction in MDR-TB prevalence (from 0.74% to 0.69% and had minimal effect on overall TB prevalence (from 2.78% to 2.74%. Strategies based on symptom screening alone were less effective and more expensive than MMR-based strategies. Study limitations included scarce primary TB time-series data in FSU prisons and uncertainties regarding screening test characteristics.In prisons of the FSU, annual screening of the general inmate population with sputum PCR most effectively reduces TB and MDR-TB prevalence, doing so cost-effectively. If this approach is not feasible, the current strategy of annual MMR is both more effective and less expensive than strategies using self-referral or symptom screening alone

  5. Cost-effectiveness analysis of malaria rapid diagnostic tests for appropriate treatment of malaria at the community level in Uganda

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Kristian S; Ndyomugyenyi, Richard; Magnussen, Pascal

    2017-01-01

    In Sub-Saharan Africa, malaria remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality among children under 5, due to lack of access to prompt and appropriate diagnosis and treatment. Many countries have scaled-up community health workers (CHWs) as a strategy towards improving access. The present study...... was a cost-effectiveness analysis of the introduction of malaria rapid diagnostic tests (mRDTs) performed by CHWs in two areas of moderate-to-high and low malaria transmission in rural Uganda. CHWs were trained to perform mRDTs and treat children with artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT......) in the intervention arm while CHWs offered treatment based on presumptive diagnosis in the control arm. Data on the proportion of children with fever 'appropriately treated for malaria with ACT' were captured from a randomised trial. Health sector costs included: training of CHWs, community sensitisation, supervision...

  6. A new technique for rapid assessment of eutrophication status of coastal waters using a support vector machine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Xianyu; Che, Xiaowei; Su, Rongguo; Zhang, Chuansong; Yao, Qingzhen; Shi, Xiaoyong

    2017-05-01

    There is an urgent need to develop efficient evaluation tools that use easily measured variables to make rapid and timely eutrophication assessments, which are important for marine health management, and to implement eutrophication monitoring programs. In this study, an approach for rapidly assessing the eutrophication status of coastal waters with three easily measured parameters (turbidity, chlorophyll a and dissolved oxygen) was developed by the grid search (GS) optimized support vector machine (SVM), with trophic index TRIX classification results as the reference. With the optimized penalty parameter C =64 and the kernel parameter γ =1, the classification accuracy rates reached 89.3% for the training data, 88.3% for the cross-validation, and 88.5% for the validation dataset. Because the developed approach only used three easy-to-measure variables, its application could facilitate the rapid assessment of the eutrophication status of coastal waters, resulting in potential cost savings in marine monitoring programs and assisting in the provision of timely advice for marine management.

  7. Assessing cost-effectiveness in obesity (ACE-obesity): an overview of the ACE approach, economic methods and cost results.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Rob; Moodie, Marj; Markwick, Alison; Magnus, Anne; Vos, Theo; Swinburn, Boyd; Haby, Michele M

    2009-11-18

    The aim of the ACE-Obesity study was to determine the economic credentials of interventions which aim to prevent unhealthy weight gain in children and adolescents. We have reported elsewhere on the modelled effectiveness of 13 obesity prevention interventions in children. In this paper, we report on the cost results and associated methods together with the innovative approach to priority setting that underpins the ACE-Obesity study. The Assessing Cost Effectiveness (ACE) approach combines technical rigour with 'due process' to facilitate evidence-based policy analysis. Technical rigour was achieved through use of standardised evaluation methods, a research team that assembles best available evidence and extensive uncertainty analysis. Cost estimates were based on pathway analysis, with resource usage estimated for the interventions and their 'current practice' comparator, as well as associated cost offsets. Due process was achieved through involvement of stakeholders, consensus decisions informed by briefing papers and 2nd stage filter analysis that captures broader factors that influence policy judgements in addition to cost-effectiveness results. The 2nd stage filters agreed by stakeholders were 'equity', 'strength of the evidence', 'feasibility of implementation', 'acceptability to stakeholders', 'sustainability' and 'potential for side-effects'. The intervention costs varied considerably, both in absolute terms (from cost saving [6 interventions] to in excess of AUD50m per annum) and when expressed as a 'cost per child' estimate (from costs per child reflected cost structure, target population and/or under-utilisation. The use of consistent methods enables valid comparison of potential intervention costs and cost-offsets for each of the interventions. ACE-Obesity informs policy-makers about cost-effectiveness, health impact, affordability and 2nd stage filters for important options for preventing unhealthy weight gain in children. In related articles cost

  8. Rapid cross platform healthcare gaming design and implementation: The cost effective methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Melvyn W B; Ho, Roger C M

    2016-11-14

    There have been massive advances in E-Health and M-Health technology, with recent interest in the utility of games for healthcare and the promotion of well-being and recovery as well as patient empowerment. There has been various review demonstrating the clinical effectiveness and efficacy of games for healthcare. It is the aim of this technical note to illustrate how appropriate gaming engines could be used by non-expert clinicians to program games that could run across various platforms, as well as games that could integrate well with existing mechanical sensors. This would address the limitations with regards to the evidence base of games, as well as the limitations in the deployment of games to various participants. More importantly, games designed are also more likely to be cost-effective and lower in cost. The ability of integration with existing mechanical sensors would value-add existing games and enable recovery and remediation in various domains of health. This would further expand the potential of games as an adjunctive treatment for patients, or at least, to maintain the gains that they have made in their recovery process.

  9. Rapid, low cost prototyping of transdermal devices for personal healthcare monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Sanjiv; Saeed, Anwer; Johnson, Christopher; Gadegaard, Nikolaj; Cass, Anthony Eg

    2017-04-01

    The next generation of devices for personal healthcare monitoring will comprise molecular sensors to monitor analytes of interest in the skin compartment. Transdermal devices based on microneedles offer an excellent opportunity to explore the dynamics of molecular markers in the interstitial fluid, however good acceptability of these next generation devices will require several technical problems associated with current commercially available wearable sensors to be overcome. These particularly include reliability, comfort and cost. An essential pre-requisite for transdermal molecular sensing devices is that they can be fabricated using scalable technologies which are cost effective. We present here a minimally invasive microneedle array as a continuous monitoring platform technology. Method for scalable fabrication of these structures is presented. The microneedle arrays were characterised mechanically and were shown to penetrate human skin under moderate thumb pressure. They were then functionalised and evaluated as glucose, lactate and theophylline biosensors. The results suggest that this technology can be employed in the measurement of metabolites, therapeutic drugs and biomarkers and could have an important role to play in the management of chronic diseases.

  10. Diagnosis of tetanus immunization status: multicenter assessment of a rapid biological test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colombet, Isabelle; Saguez, Colette; Sanson-Le Pors, Marie-José; Coudert, Benoît; Chatellier, Gilles; Espinoza, Pierre

    2005-09-01

    Diagnosis of tetanus immunization status by medical interview of patients with wounds is poor. Many protected patients receive unnecessary vaccine or immunoglobulin, and unprotected patients may receive nothing. The aim of this study is to evaluate the feasibility and accuracy of the Tetanos Quick Stick (TQS) rapid finger prick stick test in the emergency department for determining immunization status. We designed a prospective multicenter study for blinded comparison of TQS with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Adults referred for open wounds in 37 French hospital emergency departments had the TQS after receiving standard care (emergency-TQS). TQS was also performed in the hospital laboratory on total blood (blood/lab-TQS) and serum (serum/lab-TQS). ELISA was performed with the same blood sample at a central laboratory. We assessed concordance between emergency-TQS and blood/lab-TQS by the kappa test and the diagnostic accuracy (likelihood ratios) of medical interview, emergency-TQS, and lab-TQS. ELISA was positive in 94.6% of the 988 patients included. Concordance between blood/emergency-TQS and blood/lab-TQS results was moderate (kappa=0.6), with a high proportion of inconclusive blood/emergency-TQS tests (9.8%). Likelihood ratios for immunization were 3.0 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.8 to 5.1), 36.6 (95% CI, 5.3 to 255.3), 89.1 (95% CI, 5.6 to 1,405.0), and 92.7 (95% CI, 5.9 to 1,462.0) for medical interview, blood/emergency-TQS, blood/lab-TQS, and serum/lab-TQS, respectively. The sensitivity of the blood/emergency-TQS was 76.7%, and the specificity was 98% by reference to the ELISA. TQS use in the emergency room could make tetanus prevention more accurate if its technical feasibility were improved, and our assessment will be supplemented by a cost effectiveness study.

  11. Cell-on-hydrogel platform made of agar and alginate for rapid, low-cost, multidimensional test of antimicrobial susceptibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Han; Liu, Zhengzhi; Hu, Chong; Ren, Kangning

    2016-08-02

    Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a rapidly increasing threat to the effective treatment of infectious diseases worldwide. The two major remedies include: (1) using narrow-spectrum antibiotics based on rapid diagnosis; and (2) developing new antibiotics. A key part of both remedies is the antimicrobial susceptibility test (AST). However, the current standard ASTs that monitor colony formation are costly and time-consuming and the new strategies proposed are not yet practical to be implemented. Herein, we report a strategy to fabricate whole-hydrogel microfluidic chips using alginate-doped agar. This agar-based microfabrication makes it possible to prepare inexpensive hydrogel devices, and allows a seamless link between microfluidics and conventional agar-based cell culture. Different from common microfluidic systems, in our system the cells are cultured on top of the device, similar to normal agar plate culture; on the other hand, the microfluidic channels inside the hydrogel allow precise generation of linear gradient of drugs, thus giving a better performance than the conventional disk diffusion method. Cells in this system are not exposed to any shear flow, which allows the reliable tracking of individual cells and AST results to be obtained within 2-3 hours. Furthermore, our system could test the synergistic effect of drugs through two-dimensional gradient generation. Finally, the platform could be directly implemented to new drug discovery and other applications wherein a fast, cost-efficient method for studying the response of microorganisms upon drug administration is desirable.

  12. The Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP): Assessing Retirees' Cost Share

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    DiPuccio, Andrew

    1999-01-01

    .... The cost of the plan was to be paid by both the retiree and the government, with the retiree paying 60 percent of the cost and the government paying 40 percent, for an indefinite period of time...

  13. Using multimodal imaging techniques to monitor limb ischemia: a rapid noninvasive method for assessing extremity wounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luthra, Rajiv; Caruso, Joseph D.; Radowsky, Jason S.; Rodriguez, Maricela; Forsberg, Jonathan; Elster, Eric A.; Crane, Nicole J.

    2013-03-01

    Over 70% of military casualties resulting from the current conflicts sustain major extremity injuries. Of these the majority are caused by blasts from improvised explosive devices. The resulting injuries include traumatic amputations, open fractures, crush injuries, and acute vascular disruption. Critical tissue ischemia—the point at which ischemic tissues lose the capacity to recover—is therefore a major concern, as lack of blood flow to tissues rapidly leads to tissue deoxygenation and necrosis. If left undetected or unaddressed, a potentially salvageable limb may require more extensive debridement or, more commonly, amputation. Predicting wound outcome during the initial management of blast wounds remains a significant challenge, as wounds continue to "evolve" during the debridement process and our ability to assess wound viability remains subjectively based. Better means of identifying critical ischemia are needed. We developed a swine limb ischemia model in which two imaging modalities were combined to produce an objective and quantitative assessment of wound perfusion and tissue viability. By using 3 Charge-Coupled Device (3CCD) and Infrared (IR) cameras, both surface tissue oxygenation as well as overall limb perfusion could be depicted. We observed a change in mean 3CCD and IR values at peak ischemia and during reperfusion correlate well with clinically observed indicators for limb function and vitality. After correcting for baseline mean R-B values, the 3CCD values correlate with surface tissue oxygenation and the IR values with changes in perfusion. This study aims to not only increase fundamental understanding of the processes involved with limb ischemia and reperfusion, but also to develop tools to monitor overall limb perfusion and tissue oxygenation in a clinical setting. A rapid and objective diagnostic for extent of ischemic damage and overall limb viability could provide surgeons with a more accurate indication of tissue viability. This may

  14. Rapid, sensitive and cost effective method for isolation of viral DNA from feacal samples of dogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Savi.

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available A simple method for viral DNA extraction using chelex resin was developed. The method used was eco-friendly and cost effective compared to other methods such as phenol chloroform method which use health hazardous organic reagents. Further, a polymerase chain reaction (PCR based detection of canine parvovirus (CPV using primers from conserved region of VP2 gene was developed. To increase the sensitivity and specificity of reaction, nested PCR was designed. PCR reaction was optimized to amplify 747bp product of VP2 gene. The assay can be completed in few hours and doesn’t need hazardous chemicals. Thus, the sample preparation using chelating resin along with nested PCR seems to be a sensitive, specific and practical method for the detection of CPV in diarrhoeal feacal samples. [Vet. World 2010; 3(3.000: 105-106

  15. Rapid, Low-Cost, and Ecofriendly Approach for Iron Nanoparticle Synthesis Using Aspergillus oryzae TFR9

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jagadish Chandra Tarafdar

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Development of reliable and ecofriendly green approach for synthesis of metallic nanoparticles biologically is an important step in the field of application of nanoscience and nanotechnology. The present paper reports the green approach for iron nanoparticle synthesis using Aspergillus oryzae TFR9 using FeCl3 as a precursor metal salt. Valid characterization techniques employed for biosynthesized iron nanoparticles including dynamic light scattering (DLS, transmission electron microscopy (TEM, and high resolution-transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM for morphological study. X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS spectrum confirmed the presence of elemental iron signal in high percentage. Apart from ecofriendliness and easy availability, low-cost biomass production will be more advantageous when compared to other chemical methods. Biosynthesis of iron nanoparticles using fungus has greater commercial viability that it may be used in agriculture, biomedicals and engineering sector.

  16. Rapid assessment methodology in NORM measurements from building materials of Uzbekistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safarov, A A; Safarov, A N; Azimov, A N; Darby, I G

    2017-04-01

    Utilizing low cost NaI(Tl) scintillation detector systems we present methodology for the rapid screening of building material samples and the determination of their Radium Equivalent Activity (Raeq). Materials from Uzbekistan as a representative developing country have been measured and a correction coefficient for Radium activity is deduced. The use of the correction coefficient offers the possibility to decrease analysis times thus enabling the express measurement of a large quantity of samples. The reduction in time, cost and the use of inexpensive equipment can democratize the practice of screening NORM in building materials in the international community. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Cost Quality Management Assessment for the Idaho Operations Office. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-06-01

    The Office of Engineering and Cost Management (EM-24) conducted a Cost Quality Management Assessment of EM-30 and EM-40 activities at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory on Feb. 3--19, 1992 (Round I). The CQMA team assessed the cost and cost-related management activities at INEL. The Round II CQMA, conducted at INEL Sept. 19--29, 1994, reviewed EM-30, EM-40, EM-50, and EM-60 cost and cost-related management practices against performance objectives and criteria. Round II did not address indirect cost analysis. INEL has made measurable progress since Round I.

  18. An Assessment Of The Effectiveness Of Collaborative Cost ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper presents the effects of Collaborative Cost Reduction Model (CCRM) as a control Approach to reduce the high cost implication that causes the slow pace of migration process from IPV4 to IPV6 in Nigeria. This study reveals that CCRM can be applied to achieve Cost Reduction in collocation efforts in ...

  19. Assessing Cost-Effectiveness in Obesity (ACE-Obesity: an overview of the ACE approach, economic methods and cost results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Swinburn Boyd

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The aim of the ACE-Obesity study was to determine the economic credentials of interventions which aim to prevent unhealthy weight gain in children and adolescents. We have reported elsewhere on the modelled effectiveness of 13 obesity prevention interventions in children. In this paper, we report on the cost results and associated methods together with the innovative approach to priority setting that underpins the ACE-Obesity study. Methods The Assessing Cost Effectiveness (ACE approach combines technical rigour with 'due process' to facilitate evidence-based policy analysis. Technical rigour was achieved through use of standardised evaluation methods, a research team that assembles best available evidence and extensive uncertainty analysis. Cost estimates were based on pathway analysis, with resource usage estimated for the interventions and their 'current practice' comparator, as well as associated cost offsets. Due process was achieved through involvement of stakeholders, consensus decisions informed by briefing papers and 2nd stage filter analysis that captures broader factors that influence policy judgements in addition to cost-effectiveness results. The 2nd stage filters agreed by stakeholders were 'equity', 'strength of the evidence', 'feasibility of implementation', 'acceptability to stakeholders', 'sustainability' and 'potential for side-effects'. Results The intervention costs varied considerably, both in absolute terms (from cost saving [6 interventions] to in excess of AUD50m per annum and when expressed as a 'cost per child' estimate (from Conclusion The use of consistent methods enables valid comparison of potential intervention costs and cost-offsets for each of the interventions. ACE-Obesity informs policy-makers about cost-effectiveness, health impact, affordability and 2nd stage filters for important options for preventing unhealthy weight gain in children. In related articles cost-effectiveness results and

  20. The safety and effectiveness of Da Vinci surgical system compared with open surgery and laparoscopic surgery: a rapid assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jiajie; Wang, Yingqiang; Li, Youping; Li, Xianglian; Li, Cuicui; Shen, Jiantong

    2014-05-01

    The primary objectives of this rapid assessment were to assess the clinical evidence of Da Vinci surgical system (DVSS) comparing with open procedures and laparoscopic procedures, and in order to provide the evidence for health decision makers and clinician. A comprehensive search of electronic databases (EMbase, PubMed, The Cochrane Library, Web of Science, CNKI, VIP, CBM and Wanfang) and HTA websites were completed up to 9 October, 2013. Two reviews (Jiajie Yu and Yingqiang Wang) independently extracted data of the manuscripts, and assessed quality of included studies using AMSTAR tools. Qualitative description and GRADE were used to report the outcomes and evidence quality. A total of 17 studies were included: 3 were HTA and 14 were SR/meta-analysis. The included studies focused on prostatectomy, nephrectomy, hysterectomy colorectal surgery, and cardiac surgery. DVSS was shown to be associated with statistically significant reduction in length of hospital stay, blood loss, and transfusion rate compared with open and laparoscopic surgery, but increase in operative time when compared with open surgery. Based on the evidence included in this rapid assessment, DVSS has a limited impact on several clinical outcomes. Considering no available data from randomized controlled trials and much higher cost, decisions will be complex and need to be made carefully. Decision makers should cut down the quantity of purchasing and reasonable allocate them. © 2014 Chinese Cochrane Center, West China Hospital of Sichuan University and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  1. Validity of the Rapid Eating Assessment for Patients for assessing dietary patterns in NCAA athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurka, Jonathan M; Buman, Matthew P; Ainsworth, Barbara E

    2014-01-01

    Athletes may be at risk for developing adverse health outcomes due to poor eating behaviors during college. Due to the complex nature of the diet, it is difficult to include or exclude individual food items and specific food groups from the diet. Eating behaviors may better characterize the complex interactions between individual food items and specific food groups. The purpose was to examine the Rapid Eating Assessment for Patients survey (REAP) as a valid tool for analyzing eating behaviors of NCAA Division-I male and female athletes using pattern identification. Also, to investigate the relationships between derived eating behavior patterns and body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) while stratifying by sex and aesthetic nature of the sport. Two independent samples of male (n = 86; n = 139) and female (n = 64; n = 102) collegiate athletes completed the REAP in June-August 2011 (n = 150) and June-August 2012 (n = 241). Principal component analysis (PCA) determined possible factors using wave-1 athletes. Exploratory (EFA) and confirmatory factor analyses (CFA) determined factors accounting for error and confirmed model fit in wave-2 athletes. Wave-2 athletes' BMI and WC were recorded during a physical exam and sport participation determined classification in aesthetic and non-aesthetic sport. Mean differences in eating behavior pattern score were explored. Regression models examined interactions between pattern scores, participation in aesthetic or non-aesthetic sport, and BMI and waist circumference controlling for age and race. A 5-factor PCA solution accounting for 60.3% of sample variance determined fourteen questions for EFA and CFA. A confirmed solution revealed patterns of Desserts, Healthy food, Meats, High-fat food, and Dairy. Pattern score (mean ± SE) differences were found, as non-aesthetic sport males had a higher (better) Dessert score than aesthetic sport males (2.16 ± 0.07 vs. 1.93 ± 0.11). Female aesthetic athletes had a higher score

  2. A low-cost microfluidic chip for rapid genotyping of malaria-transmitting mosquitoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Changchun; Mauk, Michael G; Hart, Robert; Bonizzoni, Mariangela; Yan, Guiyun; Bau, Haim H

    2012-01-01

    Vector control is one of the most effective measures to prevent the transmission of malaria, a disease that causes over 600,000 deaths annually. Around 30-40 Anopheles mosquito species are natural vectors of malaria parasites. Some of these species cannot be morphologically distinguished, but have behavioral and ecological differences. Emblematic of this is the Anopheles gambiae species complex. The correct identification of vector species is fundamental to the development of control strategies and epidemiological studies of disease transmission. An inexpensive, disposable, field-deployable, sample-to-answer, microfluidic chip was designed, constructed, and tested for rapid molecular identification of Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles arabiensis. The chip contains three isothermal amplification reactors. One test reactor operates with specific primers to amplify Anopheles gambiae DNA, another with specific primers for Anopheles arabiensis DNA, and the third serves as a negative control. A mosquito leg was crushed on an isolation membrane. Two discs, laden with mosquito tissue, were punched out of the membrane and inserted into the two test chambers. The isolated, disc-bound DNA served as a template in the amplification processes. The amplification products were detected with intercalating fluorescent dye that was excited with a blue light-emitting diode. The emitted light was observed by eye and recorded with a cell-phone camera. When the target consisted of Anopheles gambiae, the reactor containing primers specific to An. gambiae lit up while the other two reactors remained dark. When the target consisted of Anopheles arabiensis, the reactor containing primers specific to An. arabiensis lit up while the other two reactors remained dark. The microfluidic chip provides a means to identify mosquito type through molecular analysis. It is suitable for field work, allowing one to track the geographical distribution of mosquito populations and community structure

  3. Assessment of Vehicle Sizing, Energy Consumption and Cost Through Large Scale Simulation of Advanced Vehicle Technologies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moawad, Ayman [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Kim, Namdoo [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Shidore, Neeraj [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Rousseau, Aymeric [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)

    2016-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) has been developing more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly highway transportation technologies that will enable America to use less petroleum. The long-term aim is to develop "leapfrog" technologies that will provide Americans with greater freedom of mobility and energy security, while lowering costs and reducing impacts on the environment. This report reviews the results of the DOE VTO. It gives an assessment of the fuel and light-duty vehicle technologies that are most likely to be established, developed, and eventually commercialized during the next 30 years (up to 2045). Because of the rapid evolution of component technologies, this study is performed every two years to continuously update the results based on the latest state-of-the-art technologies.

  4. A Platform for Rapid, Quantitative Assessment of Multiple Drug Combinations Simultaneously in Solid Tumors In Vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joyoti Dey

    Full Text Available While advances in high-throughput screening have resulted in increased ability to identify synergistic anti-cancer drug combinations, validation of drug synergy in the in vivo setting and prioritization of combinations for clinical development remain low-throughput and resource intensive. Furthermore, there is currently no viable method for prospectively assessing drug synergy directly in human patients in order to potentially tailor therapies. To address these issues we have employed the previously described CIVO platform and developed a quantitative approach for investigating multiple combination hypotheses simultaneously in single living tumors. This platform provides a rapid, quantitative and cost effective approach to compare and prioritize drug combinations based on evidence of synergistic tumor cell killing in the live tumor context. Using a gemcitabine resistant model of pancreatic cancer, we efficiently investigated nine rationally selected Abraxane-based combinations employing only 19 xenografted mice. Among the drugs tested, the BCL2/BCLxL inhibitor ABT-263 was identified as the one agent that synergized with Abraxane® to enhance acute induction of localized apoptosis in this model of human pancreatic cancer. Importantly, results obtained with CIVO accurately predicted the outcome of systemic dosing studies in the same model where superior tumor regression induced by the Abraxane/ABT-263 combination was observed compared to that induced by either single agent. This supports expanded use of CIVO as an in vivo platform for expedited in vivo drug combination validation and sets the stage for performing toxicity-sparing drug combination studies directly in cancer patients with solid malignancies.

  5. Rapid, serial, non-invasive assessment of drug efficacy in mice with autoluminescent Mycobacterium ulcerans infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tianyu Zhang

    Full Text Available Buruli ulcer (BU caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans is the world's third most common mycobacterial infection. There is no vaccine against BU and surgery is needed for patients with large ulcers. Although recent experience indicates combination chemotherapy with streptomycin and rifampin improves cure rates, the utility of this regimen is limited by the 2-month duration of therapy, potential toxicity and required parenteral administration of streptomycin, and drug-drug interactions caused by rifampin. Discovery and development of drugs for BU is greatly hampered by the slow growth rate of M. ulcerans, requiring up to 3 months of incubation on solid media to produce colonies. Surrogate markers for evaluating antimicrobial activity in real-time which can be measured serially and non-invasively in infected footpads of live mice would accelerate pre-clinical evaluation of new drugs to treat BU. Previously, we developed bioluminescent M. ulcerans strains, demonstrating proof of concept for measuring luminescence as a surrogate marker for viable M. ulcerans in vitro and in vivo. However, the requirement of exogenous substrate limited the utility of such strains, especially for in vivo experiments.For this study, we engineered M. ulcerans strains that express the entire luxCDABE operon and therefore are autoluminescent due to endogenous substrate production. The selected reporter strain displayed a growth rate and virulence similar to the wild-type parent strain and enabled rapid, real-time monitoring of in vitro and in vivo drug activity, including serial, non-invasive assessments in live mice, producing results which correlated closely with colony-forming unit (CFU counts for a panel of drugs with various mechanisms of action.Our results indicate that autoluminescent reporter strains of M. ulcerans are exceptional tools for pre-clinical evaluation of new drugs to treat BU due to their potential to drastically reduce the time, effort, animals, compound

  6. Rapid toxicity assessment of sediments from estuarine ecosystems: A new tandem in vitro testing approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, B. Thomas; Long, E.R.

    1998-01-01

    Microtox?? and Mutatox?? were used to evaluate the acute toxicity and genotoxicity, respectively, of organic sediment extracts from Pensacola Bay and St. Andrew Bay, two estuaries that cover about 273 and 127 km2, respectively, along the Gulf coast of Florida, USA. The sensitivity and selectivity of these two bioluminescent toxicity assays were demonstrated in validation studies with over 50 pesticides, genotoxins, and industrial pollutants, both as single compounds and in complex mixtures. The 50% effective concentration (EC50) values of insecticides, petroleum products, and polychlorinated biphenyls determined by Microtox all tended to group around the mean EC50 value of 1.2 (0.8) mg/L. The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon sensitivity of Mutatox was in general similar to that reported in the Ames test. Surficial sediment samples were collected, extracted with dichloromethane, evaporated and concentrated under nitrogen, dissolved in dimethyl sulfoxide, assayed for acute toxicity and genotoxicity, and compared with reference sediments. Samples with low EC50 values, and determined to be genotoxic, were detected in Massalina Bayou, Watson Bayou, East Bay, and St. Andrew Bay-East in St. Andrew Bay as well as Bayou Grande, Bayou Chico, and Bayou Texar in Pensacola Bay. An overview of these data sets analyzed by Spearman rank correlation showed a significant correlation between acute toxicity and genotoxicity (p < 0.05). Microtox and Mutatox in tandem was a sensitive, cost-effective, and rapid (<24 h) screening tool that identified troublesome areas of pollution and assessed the potential sediment toxicity of lipophilic contaminants in aquatic ecosystems.

  7. Deterministic Assessment of Future Costs for Dismantling (FA)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vasko, Marek [DECOM, Trnava (Slovakia)

    2012-11-01

    The main objective of the report is to provide an re-evaluation of cost calculations by OMEGA code for the Intermediate Storage for Spent Fuel in Studsvik (FA facility) using up-to-date Swedish labour cost unit factors and available up-to-date Swedish (or international) cost unit factors for consumables, materials and substances. Furthermore, evolution of other OMEGA database parameters concerning cost calculations e.g. manpower unit factors and workgroups parameters are taken into account. This report follows up former project which introduced tentative calculations of main decommissioning parameters such as costs, manpower and exposure of personnel for activities of older nuclear facility decommissioning in Sweden represented by FA Facility in Studsvik by means of calculation code OMEGA. The project demonstrated an implementation of advanced costing methodology based on PSL structure format to achieve transparent, traceable and comparable estimates even for older nuclear facilities like FA Facility in Studsvik. This former project used Slovak origin labour costs unit factors and other cost unit factors. After successful completion of this project, there was an intent of SSM to reevaluate calculations using an up-to-date Swedish labour cost data and also available Swedish consumables and materials cost data if available. Within this report re-calculations of main decommissioning parameters using available Swedish data are presented in structure according to Proposed Standardized List of Items for Costing Purposes. Calculations are made for decommissioning scenario with post-dismantling decontamination and steel radwaste melting technologies available at the site. All parameters are documented and summed up in both table and graphic forms in text and Annexes. Further, comparison of calculated results with previous calculations together with discussion is provided.

  8. Synthesis and stochastic assessment of cost-optimal schedules

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mader, Angelika H.; Bohnenkamp, H.C.; Usenko, Y.S.; Jansen, D.N.; Hurink, Johann L.; Hermanns, H.

    We treat the problem of generating cost-optimal schedules for orders with individual due dates and cost functions based on earliness/tardiness. Orders can run in parallel in a resource-constrained manufacturing environment, where resources are subject to stochastic breakdowns. The goal is to

  9. Guidelines and Metrics for Assessing Space System Cost Estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    1991. Hu, Shu-Ping, Franklin Fong, and Brian Enser, “Cost Improvement Analysis of USCM8 Using Quantity as an Independent Variable (QAIV),” presented...Evaluating Software Cost and Schedule Estimates, Pittsburgh: Software Engineering Institute, January 1995. Pfleeger, Shari Lawrence, Felicia Wu, and Rosalind

  10. Assessment of Long-Run Marginal Costing of Transmission and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Then using typical practical networks as case studies, this paper compares two different methods for the determination of the LRMC of transmission and distribution expansion/reinforcement: the average incremental cost (AIC) methodology and marginal incremental costs (MIC) techniques. Based on the results obtained, it is ...

  11. Assessing and forecasting groundwater development costs in Sub ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Greater use of groundwater in Sub-Saharan Africa is a pre-requisite for improved human welfare; however, the costs associated with groundwater development are prohibitively high and poorly defined. This study identifies and disaggregates the costs of groundwater development in 11 Sub-Saharan African countries, while ...

  12. Activity-Based Costing Model for Assessing Economic Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeHayes, Daniel W.; Lovrinic, Joseph G.

    1994-01-01

    An economic model for evaluating the cost performance of academic and administrative programs in higher education is described. Examples from its application at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis are used to illustrate how the model has been used to control costs and reengineer processes. (Author/MSE)

  13. Managing student retention through the assessment of cost of quality

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... whilst the costs related to unsuccessful students or students that drop out of the system may be perceived as wasted resources. This article analyses students' dropout rate by identifying critical dropout points in the students' study cycle. A quality management system is used as a basis to determine the cost of quality.

  14. A framework for assessing cost management system changes: the case of activity-based costing implementation at food industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tayebeh Faraji

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available An opportunity to investigate the technical and organizational effect of management accounting system changes has appeared with companies' adoption of activity-based costing (ABC. This paper presents an empirical investigation to study the effects of ABC system for case study from food industry in Iran. From this case, the paper develops a framework for assessing ABC implementation and hypotheses about factors that influence implementation. The study detects five cost centers and for each cost center, it determines different cost drivers. The results of our survey has detected that implementation of ABC system not only helps precise allocation of overhead costs but also helps internal management companies for better planning and control of production, making better decisions for company's profits.

  15. PET-CT in oncological patients: analysis of informal care costs in cost-benefit assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orlacchio, Antonio; Ciarrapico, Anna Micaela; Schillaci, Orazio; Chegai, Fabrizio; Tosti, Daniela; D'Alba, Fabrizio; Guazzaroni, Manlio; Simonetti, Giovanni

    2014-04-01

    The authors analysed the impact of nonmedical costs (travel, loss of productivity) in an economic analysis of PET-CT (positron-emission tomography-computed tomography) performed with standard contrast-enhanced CT protocols (CECT). From October to November 2009, a total of 100 patients referred to our institute were administered a questionnaire to evaluate the nonmedical costs of PET-CT. In addition, the medical costs (equipment maintenance and depreciation, consumables and staff) related to PET-CT performed with CECT and PET-CT with low-dose nonenhanced CT and separate CECT were also estimated. The medical costs were 919.3 euro for PET-CT with separate CECT, and 801.3 euro for PET-CT with CECT. Therefore, savings of approximately 13% are possible. Moreover, savings in nonmedical costs can be achieved by reducing the number of hospital visits required by patients undergoing diagnostic imaging. Nonmedical costs heavily affect patients' finances as well as having an indirect impact on national health expenditure. Our results show that PET-CT performed with standard dose CECT in a single session provides benefits in terms of both medical and nonmedical costs.

  16. A Rapid Assessment Tool for affirming good practice in midwifery education programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fullerton, Judith T; Johnson, Peter; Lobe, Erika; Myint, Khine Haymar; Aung, Nan Nan; Moe, Thida; Linn, Nay Aung

    2016-03-01

    to design a criterion-referenced assessment tool that could be used globally in a rapid assessment of good practices and bottlenecks in midwifery education programs. a standard tool development process was followed, to generate standards and reference criteria; followed by external review and field testing to document psychometric properties. review of standards and scoring criteria were conducted by stakeholders around the globe. Field testing of the tool was conducted in Myanmar. eleven of Myanmar׳s 22 midwifery education programs participated in the assessment. the clinimetric tool was demonstrated to have content validity and high inter-rater reliability in use. a globally validated tool, and accompanying user guide and handbook are now available for conducting rapid assessments of compliance with good practice criteria in midwifery education programming. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  17. Assessing health systems for type 1 diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa: developing a 'Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access'

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beran, David; Yudkin, John S; de Courten, Maximilian

    2006-01-01

    In order to improve the health of people with Type 1 diabetes in developing countries, a clear analysis of the constraints to insulin access and diabetes care is needed. We developed a Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access, comprising a series of questionnaires as well as a protocol for th...

  18. Rapid experimental evolution of pesticide resistance in C. elegans entails no costs and affects the mating system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia C Lopes

    Full Text Available Pesticide resistance is a major concern in natural populations and a model trait to study adaptation. Despite the importance of this trait, the dynamics of its evolution and of its ecological consequences remain largely unstudied. To fill this gap, we performed experimental evolution with replicated populations of Caenorhabditis elegans exposed to the pesticide Levamisole during 20 generations. Exposure to Levamisole resulted in decreased survival, fecundity and male frequency, which declined from 30% to zero. This was not due to differential susceptibility of males. Rather, the drug affected mobility, resulting in fewer encounters, probably leading to reduced outcrossing rates. Adaptation, i.e., increased survival and fecundity, occurred within 10 and 20 generations, respectively. Male frequency also increased by generation 20. Adaptation costs were undetected in the ancestral environment and in presence of Ivermectin, another widely-used pesticide with an opposite physiological effect. Our results demonstrate that pesticide resistance can evolve at an extremely rapid pace. Furthermore, we unravel the effects of behaviour on life-history traits and test the environmental dependence of adaptation costs. This study establishes experimental evolution as a powerful tool to tackle pesticide resistance, and paves the way to further investigations manipulating environmental and/or genetic factors underlying adaptation to pesticides.

  19. FREQ-Seq: a rapid, cost-effective, sequencing-based method to determine allele frequencies directly from mixed populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lon M Chubiz

    Full Text Available Understanding evolutionary dynamics within microbial populations requires the ability to accurately follow allele frequencies through time. Here we present a rapid, cost-effective method (FREQ-Seq that leverages Illumina next-generation sequencing for localized, quantitative allele frequency detection. Analogous to RNA-Seq, FREQ-Seq relies upon counts from the >10(5 reads generated per locus per time-point to determine allele frequencies. Loci of interest are directly amplified from a mixed population via two rounds of PCR using inexpensive, user-designed oligonucleotides and a bar-coded bridging primer system that can be regenerated in-house. The resulting bar-coded PCR products contain the adapters needed for Illumina sequencing, eliminating further library preparation. We demonstrate the utility of FREQ-Seq by determining the order and dynamics of beneficial alleles that arose as a microbial population, founded with an engineered strain of Methylobacterium, evolved to grow on methanol. Quantifying allele frequencies with minimal bias down to 1% abundance allowed effective analysis of SNPs, small in-dels and insertions of transposable elements. Our data reveal large-scale clonal interference during the early stages of adaptation and illustrate the utility of FREQ-Seq as a cost-effective tool for tracking allele frequencies in populations.

  20. A low cost and palm-size analyzer for rapid and sensitive protein detection by AC electrokinetics capacitive sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaozhu; Cheng, Cheng; Wu, Jayne; Eda, Shigetoshi; Guo, Yongcai

    2017-04-15

    Specific detection of protein biomarkers has a wide range of applications in areas such as medical science, diagnostics, and pharmacology. Quantitative detection of protein biomarkers in biological media, such as serum, is critically important in detecting disease or physiological malfunction, or tracking disease progression. Among various detection methods, electrical detection is particularly well suited for point-of-care (POC) specific protein detection, being of low cost, light weight and small form factor. A portable system for sensitive and quantitative detection of protein biomarkers will be highly valuable in controlling and preventing diseases outbreaks. Recently, an alternating current electrokinetic (ACEK) capacitive sensing method has been reported to demonstrate very promising performance on rapid and sensitive detection of specific protein from serum. In this work, a low cost and portable analyzer with good accuracy is developed to use with ACEK capacitive sensing to produce a true POC technology. The development of a board-level capacitance readout system is presented, as well as the adaption of the protocol for use with ACEK capacitive sensing. Results showed that the developed system could achieve a limit of detection of 10ng/mL, comparable to a sophisticated benchtop instrument. With its small size and light-weight similar to a smart phone, the developed system is ready to be applicable to POC diagnostics. Further, the readout system can be readily expanded for multichannel monitoring and telecommunication capabilities. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. [Assessing the cost of the first episode of bronchiolitis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sannier, N; Bocquet, N; Timsit, S; Cojocaru, B; Wille, C; Garel, D; Boursiquot, C; Chéron, G

    2001-09-01

    Each year, a quarter of the children younger than 24 months has respiratory syncytial virus bronchiolitis. The morbidity among high-risk infants and the possible association with the development of asthma lead to propose preventive measures whose cost-effectiveness relationship is unknown. The present work was aimed at measuring costs of a first attack of bronchiolitis. For children less than two years visited in the emergency department, direct and indirect costs were measured according to the 'Sécurité Sociale' prices. Associated morbidity, the management of care (inpatient versus outpatient), outpatients' outcome two weeks after the visit, socioeconomic data were recorded. One hundred eighty three children have been studied. The length of stay for 40 hospitalizations was 7.6 +/- 4.3 days. Direct costs were 37,200 +/- 22,000 FF for inpatients, and 1286 +/- 633 F for outpatients. For 113 outpatients' families, indirect costs were 49 working days lost. The way the child was looked after and the unemployment rate in the study were similar to data provided by the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. Because of the variability of the hospitalization rate from one setting to another, overall costs of the epidemic cannot be evaluated. For the policymaker, the greatest costs come from the outpatient care. Others studies will be necessary to evaluate the price of future preventive measures.

  2. Rapid Evidence Assessments of Research to Inform Social Policy: Taking Stock and Moving Forward

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, James; Newman, Mark; Oliver, Sandy

    2013-01-01

    There is a tension between conducting comprehensive systematic reviews and completing them in time to meet policy-making deadlines. The "rapid evidence assessment" has been proposed as a solution to this; offering rigorous reviews in a condensed timescale. While used frequently in healthcare, this mode of reviewing presents considerable…

  3. The quality of rapid HIV testing in South Africa: an assessment of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Abstract. Background: The aim of this study was to assess the quality of rapid HIV testing in South Africa. Method: A two-stage sampling procedure was used to select HCT sites in eight provinces of South Africa. The study employed both semi-structured interviews with HIV testers and observation of testing sessions as a ...

  4. The quality of rapid HIV testing in South Africa: an assessment of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: The aim of this study was to assess the quality of rapid HIV testing in South Africa. Method: A two-stage sampling procedure was used to select HCT sites in eight provinces of South Africa. The study employed both semi-structured interviews with HIV testers and observation of testing sessions as a means of ...

  5. Rapid Geriatric Assessment: Secondary Prevention to Stop Age-Associated Disability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morley, John E

    2017-08-01

    The Rapid Geriatric Assessment (RGA) measures frailty, sarcopenia, anorexia, cognition, and advanced directives. The RGA is a screen for primary care physicians to be able to detect geriatric syndromes. Early intervention when geriatric syndromes are recognized can decrease disability, hospitalization, and mortality. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Rapid assessment of wildfire damage using Forest Inventory data: A case in Georgia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard A. Harper; John W. Coulsten; Jeffery A. Turner

    2009-01-01

    The rapid assessment of damage caused by natural disasters is essential for planning the appropriate amount of disaster relief funds and public communication. Annual Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) data provided initial estimates of damage to timberland in a timely manner to State leaders during the 2007 Georgia Bay Complex Wildfire in southeast Georgia. FIA plots...

  7. Development of flexural vibration inspection techniques to rapidly assess the structural health of rural bridge systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brian K. Brashaw; Robert Vatalaro; Xiping Wang; Kevin Sarvela; James P. Wacker

    2008-01-01

    Approximately 4,000 vehicle bridges in the State of Minnesota contain structural timber members. Recent research at the University of Minnesota Duluth Natural Resources Research Institute (UMD NRRI) has been conducted on vibration testing of timber bridges as a means of developing rapid in-place testing techniques for assessing the structural health of bridges. The...

  8. A rapid assessment of species-specific bird strike risk at the Kotoka ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A rapid assessment of species-specific bird strike risk at the Kotoka International Airport in Accra, Ghana. ... We conclude that wildlife management to avert the risk of bird strikes could be successfully achieved by adopting both proactive and reactive measures to reduce the presence of problem species at the aerodrome.

  9. Rapid psychological assessment of depression and its relationship with physical health among urban elderly

    OpenAIRE

    Pavithra Cheluvaraj; Mangesh Balu Nanaware; Surya Prakasa Rao

    2016-01-01

    Background Old age is associated with increased occurrence of a wide array of Psychological impairments or losses, which might contribute to physical disabilities. As Depression has been identified as the most common aberration its rapid assessment would be able to identify the quality of individual and family life of the elderly. Aims To assess psychological health status with respect to depression among geriatric urban community, and the relationship of depression with health perce...

  10. Rapid and Low-Cost CRP Measurement by Integrating a Paper-Based Microfluidic Immunoassay with Smartphone (CRP-Chip).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Meili; Wu, Jiandong; Ma, Zimin; Peretz-Soroka, Hagit; Zhang, Michael; Komenda, Paul; Tangri, Navdeep; Liu, Yong; Rigatto, Claudio; Lin, Francis

    2017-03-26

    Traditional diagnostic tests for chronic diseases are expensive and require a specialized laboratory, therefore limiting their use for point-of-care (PoC) testing. To address this gap, we developed a method for rapid and low-cost C-reactive protein (CRP) detection from blood by integrating a paper-based microfluidic immunoassay with a smartphone (CRP-Chip). We chose CRP for this initial development because it is a strong biomarker of prognosis in chronic heart and kidney disease. The microfluidic immunoassay is realized by lateral flow and gold nanoparticle-based colorimetric detection of the target protein. The test image signal is acquired and analyzed using a commercial smartphone with an attached microlens and a 3D-printed chip-phone interface. The CRP-Chip was validated for detecting CRP in blood samples from chronic kidney disease patients and healthy subjects. The linear detection range of the CRP-Chip is up to 2 μg/mL and the detection limit is 54 ng/mL. The CRP-Chip test result yields high reproducibility and is consistent with the standard ELISA kit. A single CRP-Chip can perform the test in triplicate on a single chip within 15 min for less than 50 US cents of material cost. This CRP-Chip with attractive features of low-cost, fast test speed, and integrated easy operation with smartphones has the potential to enable future clinical PoC chronic disease diagnosis and risk stratification by parallel measurements of a panel of protein biomarkers.

  11. A transferable approach towards rapid inventory data capturing for seismic vulnerability assessment using open-source geospatial technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wieland, M.; Pittore, M.; Parolai, S.; Zschau, J.

    2012-04-01

    Geospatial technologies are increasingly being used in pre-disaster vulnerability assessment and post-disaster impact assessment for different types of hazards. Especially the use of remote sensing data has been strongly promoted in recent years due to its capabilities of providing up-to-date information over large areas at a comparatively low cost with increasingly high spatial, temporal and spectral resolution. Despite its clear potentials, a purely remote sensing based approach has its limitations in that it is only capable of providing information about the birds-eye view of the objects of interest. The use of omnidirectional imaging in addition can provide the necessary street-view that furthermore allows for a rapid visual screening of a buildings façade. In this context, we propose an integrated approach to rapid inventory data capturing for the assessment of structural vulnerability of buildings in case of an earthquake. Globally available low-cost data sources are preferred and the tools are developed on an open-source basis to allow for a high degree of transferability and usability. On a neighbourhood scale medium spatial but high temporal and spectral resolution satellite images are analysed to outline areas of homogeneous urban structure. Following a proportional allocation scheme, for each urban structure type representative sample areas are selected for a more detailed analysis of the building stock with high resolution image data. On a building-by-building scale a ground-based, rapid visual survey is performed using an omnidirectional imaging system driven around with a car inside the identified sample areas. Processing of the acquired images allows for an extraction of vulnerability-related features of single buildings (e.g. building height, detection of soft-storeys). An analysis of high resolution satellite images provides with further inventory features (e.g. footprint area, shape irregularity). Since we are dealing with information coming from

  12. Assessing the cost saving potential of shared product architectures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, Niels Henrik; Hansen, Christian Lindschou; Løkkegaard, Martin

    2016-01-01

    company. Experiences from the case company show it is possible to reduce the number of architectures with 60% which leads to significant reduction in direct material and labor costs. This can be achieved without compromising the market offerings of products. Experiences from the case study indicate cost......This article presents a method for calculating cost savings of shared architectures in industrial companies called Architecture Mapping and Evaluation. The main contribution is an operational method to evaluate the cost potential and evaluate the number of product architectures in an industrial...... reductions between 0.5% and 2% of turnover. The main implication is that the method provides a quantitative basis for the discussion on whether or not to implement shared product architectures. This means a more fact-based approach is introduced....

  13. A rapid and systematic review of the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of orlistat in the management of obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Meara, S; Riemsma, R; Shirran, L; Mather, L; ter Riet, G

    2001-01-01

    The prevalence of obesity in developed societies is increasing. Obesity is associated with an increased risk of co-morbidity, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Following the withdrawal of fenfluramine and dexfenfluramine, interest has focused on a novel anti-obesity drug orlistat. To systematically assess the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of orlistat in the management of obesity. METHODS - SEARCH STRATEGY: Nineteen electronic databases were searched from inception to June 2000. Additionally, Internet searches were carried out, bibliographies of retrieved articles were examined and submissions were received from the manufacturer of orlistat. METHODS - INCLUSION AND EXCLUSION CRITERIA: Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the effectiveness of orlistat used for weight loss or maintenance of weight loss in overweight or obese patients were eligible for inclusion. Primary outcome measures were changes in body weight, fat content or fat distribution. Secondary outcomes were changes in obesity-related risk-factor profiles, such as lipid levels, indicators of glycaemic control and blood pressure. Studies recruiting people with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa were excluded. METHODS - PROCESS OF STUDY SELECTION: Assessment of titles and abstracts was performed independently by two reviewers. If either reviewer considered a reference to be relevant, the full paper was retrieved. Full papers were assessed against the review selection criteria by two independent reviewers, and disagreements were resolved through discussion. METHODS - DATA EXTRACTION: Data were extracted by one reviewer into structured summary tables and checked by a second reviewer. Any disagreements about data were resolved by discussion. METHODS - QUALITY ASSESSMENT: Each included trial was assessed against a comprehensive checklist for methodological quality. Quality assessment was performed independently by two reviewers with disagreements

  14. 78 FR 53425 - Indirect Cost Rates for the Damage Assessment, Remediation, and Restoration Program for Fiscal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-29

    ... policy for these fiscal years. For cases not settled and cost claims not paid prior to the effective date of the fiscal year in question, costs will be recalculated using the revised rates in this policy for... Indirect Cost Rates for the Damage Assessment, Remediation, and Restoration Program for Fiscal Year 2012...

  15. Organizational Change Efforts: Methodologies for Assessing Organizational Effectiveness and Program Costs versus Benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macy, Barry A.; Mirvis, Philip H.

    1982-01-01

    A standardized methodology for identifying, defining, and measuring work behavior and performance rather than production, and a methodology that estimates the costs and benefits of work innovation are presented for assessing organizational effectiveness and program costs versus benefits in organizational change programs. Factors in a cost-benefit…

  16. Life cycle costing of a milk producing farm – cost assessment of environmental impact mitigation strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agriculture is a significant contributor to greenhouse gases (GHG). A study by the University of Arkansas showed that 70% of the carbon footprint of milk occurs before the farm gate. The goal of this study was to add costs to the GHG study to determine the impact of the farm milk production system o...

  17. A rapid equity focused health impact assessment of a policy implementation plan: An Australian case study and impact evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Equity focused health impact assessments (EFHIAs), or health equity impact assessments, are being increasingly promoted internationally as a mechanism for enhancing the consideration of health equity in the development of policies, programs and projects. Despite this there are relatively few examples of examples of completed EFHIAs available. This paper presents a case study of a rapid EFHIA that was conducted in Australia on a health promotion policy implementation plan. It briefly describes the process and findings of the EFHIA and evaluates the impact on decision-making and implementation. Methods The rapid EFHIA was undertaken in four days, drawing on an expert panel and limited review of the literature. A process evaluation was undertaken by email one month after the EFHIA was completed. An impact evaluation was undertaken two years later based on five semi-structured interviews with members of the EFHIA working group and policy officers and managers responsible for implementing the plan. A cost estimation was conducted by the EFHIA working group. Findings The EFHIA made both general and specific recommendations about how the health equity impacts of the policy implementation plan could be improved. The impact evaluation identified changes to development and implementation that occurred as a result of the EFHIA, though there was disagreement about the extent to which changes could be attributed solely to the EFHIA. Those responsible considered the recommendations of the EFHIA in the next versions of their ABHI implementation plans. Factors that influenced the impact of the EFHIA included consolidating understandings of equity, enabling discussion of alternatives, and differing understandings of the purpose of the EFHIA. The EFHIA cost US$4,036 to undertake. Conclusions This EFHIA was conducted in a short timeframe using relatively few resources. It had some reported impacts on the development of the implementation plan and enhanced overall

  18. The Development and Validation of a Rapid Assessment Tool of Primary Care in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, Jie; Liang, Yuan; Shi, LeiYu; Zhao, JingGe; Wang, YuTan; Kuang, Li

    2016-01-01

    Introduction. With Chinese health care reform increasingly emphasizing the importance of primary care, the need for a tool to evaluate primary care performance and service delivery is clear. This study presents a methodology for a rapid assessment of primary care organizations and service delivery in China. Methods. The study translated and adapted the Primary Care Assessment Tool-Adult Edition (PCAT-AE) into a Chinese version to measure core dimensions of primary care, namely, first contact, continuity, comprehensiveness, and coordination. A cross-sectional survey was conducted to assess the validity and reliability of the Chinese Rapid Primary Care Assessment Tool (CR-PCAT). Eight community health centers in Guangdong province have been selected to participate in the survey. Results. A total of 1465 effective samples were included for data analysis. Eight items were eliminated following principal component analysis and reliability testing. The principal component analysis extracted five multiple-item scales (first contact utilization, first contact accessibility, ongoing care, comprehensiveness, and coordination). The tests of scaling assumptions were basically met. Conclusion. The standard psychometric evaluation indicates that the scales have achieved relatively good reliability and validity. The CR-PCAT provides a rapid and reliable measure of four core dimensions of primary care, which could be applied in various scenarios. PMID:26885509

  19. 37 CFR 251.54 - Assessment of costs of arbitration panels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 37 Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Assessment of costs of arbitration panels. 251.54 Section 251.54 Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights COPYRIGHT OFFICE, LIBRARY OF... OF PROCEDURE Procedures of Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panels § 251.54 Assessment of costs of...

  20. The Cost of Commonality: Assessing Value in Joint Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    dire consequences for the survival and performance of the network as a whole ( Emerson , 1976). Military services are independent stakeholders who join...maximize provincial outcomes at the expense of collective optimization. Thus, rational actions within the network are often undertaken irrespective of...incentives for opportunistic behavior at the expense of collective optimization. The associated transaction costs and suboptimal performance can have

  1. Environmental and Cost Assessment of a Polypropylene Nanocomposite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roes, A.L.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/303022388; Marsili, E.; Nieuwlaar, E.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073931373; Patel, M.K.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/18988097X

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes a study on the use of a polypropylene (PP)/layered silicate nanocomposite as packaging film, agricultural film, and automotive panels. The study’s main question was “Are the environmental impacts and costs throughout the life cycle of nanocomposite products lower than those of

  2. Controlling Urban Air Pollution: A Benefit-Cost Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krupnick, Alan J.; Portney, Paul R.

    1991-01-01

    The pros and cons of air pollution control efforts are discussed. Both national and regional air pollution control plans are described. Topics of discussion include benefit-cost analysis, air quality regulation, reducing ozone in the urban areas, the Los Angeles plan, uncertainties, and policy implications. (KR)

  3. Cost analysis and risk assessment for metrology applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudva, Sudhakar M.; Potter, Randall

    1992-06-01

    Historically, the significance of an accurate and precise metrology tool has been determined by rules of thumb such as the Gagemaker's Rule. However, with the advent of statistical process control of IC manufacturing, it has become practical to statistically determine the probability of a product being misclassified during metrology. Several parameters, such as the process distribution, the precision and accuracy of the metrology tool, the measurement strategies, etc., determine the probability that a good product is classified as bad and vice versa. The probability function can subsequently be converted to a number equivalent to the percentage of product misclassified. From this number, the cost of misclassification can be calculated, which is a function of the precision, the accuracy, and the measurement strategy used. This cost can be used in making decisions involving justification of new metrology capability, better measurement strategies, or to decide whether metrology is needed at all. Examples have been generated to illustrate the actual cost involved in using a poor metrology tool, and strategies have been suggested to contain the cost of misclassification.

  4. Assessing Levels of Attention Using Low Cost Eye Tracking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bækgaard, Per; Petersen, Michael Kai; Larsen, Jakob Eg

    2016-01-01

    the allocated effort when responding to confusing stimuli. Although such experiments are normally carried out in a lab, we have initial indications that we are able to differentiate between sustained alertness and complex decision making even with low cost eye tracking “in the wild”. From a quantified self...

  5. Assessing cost-effectiveness in the management of multiple sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ceri J Phillips

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Ceri J Phillips, Ioan HumphreysInstitute for Health Research, School of Health Science, Swansea University, Swansea, Wales, UKAbstract: Multiple sclerosis (MS is one of the most common causes of neurological disability in young and middle-aged adults, with current prevalence rates estimated to be 30 per 100,000 populations. Women are approximately twice as susceptible as males, but males are more likely to have progressive disease. The onset of the disease normally occurs between 20 and 40 years of age, with a peak incidence during the late twenties and early thirties, resulting in many years of disability for a large proportion of patients, many of whom require wheelchairs and some nursing home or hospital care. The aim of this study is to update a previous review which considered the cost-effectiveness of disease-modifying drugs (DMDs, such as interferons and glatiramer acetate, with more up to date therapies, such as mitaxantrone hydrochloride and natalizumab in the treatment of MS. The development and availability of new agents has been accompanied byan increased optimism that treatment regimens for MS would be more effective; that the number, severity and duration of relapses would diminish; that disease progression would be delayed; and that disability accumulation would be reduced. However, doubts have been expressed about the effectiveness of these treatments, which has only served to compound the problems associated with endeavors to estimate the relative cost-effectiveness of such interventions.Keywords: multiple sclerosis, disease management, immunomodulatory drugs, cost-effectiveness, cost-effectiveness analysis, cost-utility analysis

  6. Cost Assessment Methodology and Economic Viability of Tidal Energy Projects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Segura

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The exploitation of technologies with which to harness the energy from ocean currents will have considerable possibilities in the future thanks to their enormous potential for electricity production and their high predictability. In this respect, the development of methodologies for the economic viability of these technologies is fundamental to the attainment of a consistent quantification of their costs and the discovery of their economic viability, while simultaneously attracting investment in these technologies. This paper presents a methodology with which to determine the economic viability of tidal energy projects, which includes a technical study of the life-cycle costs into which the development of a tidal farm can be decomposed: concept and definition, design and development, manufacturing, installation, operation and maintenance and dismantling. These cost structures are additionally subdivided by considering their sub-costs and bearing in mind the main components of the tidal farm: the nacelle, the supporting tidal energy converter structure and the export power system. Furthermore, a technical study is developed in order to obtain an estimation of the annual energy produced (and, consequently, the incomes generated if the electric tariff is known by considering its principal attributes: the characteristics of the current, the ability of the device to capture energy and its ability to convert and export the energy. The methodology has been applied (together with a sensibility analysis to the particular case of a farm composed of first generation tidal energy converters in one of the Channel Island Races, the Alderney Race, in the U.K., and the results have been attained by means of the computation of engineering indexes, such as the net present value, the internal rate of return, the discounted payback period and the levelized cost of energy, which indicate that the proposed project is economically viable for all the case studies.

  7. Rapid quantitative assessment of visible injury to vegetation and visual amenity effects of fluoride air pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doley, D

    2010-01-01

    Quantitative measures of visible injury are proposed for the protection of the aesthetic acceptability and health of ecosystems. Visible indications of air pollutant injury symptoms can be assessed rapidly and economically over large areas of mixed species such as native ecosystems. Reliable indication requires close attention to the criteria for assessment, species selection, and the influence of other environmental conditions on plant response to a pollutant. The estimation of fluoride-induced visible injury in dicotyledonous species may require techniques that are more varied than the measurement of necrosis in linear-leaved monocotyledons and conifers. A scheme is described for quantitative estimates of necrosis, chlorosis and deformation of leaves using an approximately geometric series of injury categories that permits rapid and sufficiently consistent determination and recognises degrees of aesthetic offence associated with foliar injury to plants.

  8. Rapid, scalable, and low-cost purification of recombinant adeno-associated virus produced by baculovirus expression vector system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre-Olivier Buclez

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Recombinant adeno-associated viruses (rAAV are largely used for gene transfer in research, preclinical developments, and clinical trials. Their broad in vivo biodistribution and long-term efficacy in postmitotic tissues make them good candidates for numerous gene transfer applications. Upstream processes able to produce large amounts of rAAV were developed, particularly those using baculovirus expression vector system. In parallel, downstream processes present a large panel of purification methods, often including multiple and time consuming steps. Here, we show that simple tangential flow filtration, coupled with an optimized iodixanol-based isopycnic density gradient, is sufficient to purify several liters of crude lysate produced by baculovirus expression vector system in only one working day, leading to high titers and good purity of rAAV products. Moreover, we show that the viral vectors retain their in vitro and in vivo functionalities. Our results demonstrate that simple, rapid, and relatively low-cost methods can easily be implemented for obtaining a high-quality grade of gene therapy products based on rAAV technology.

  9. Rapid detection of Clostridium difficile via magnetic bead aggregation in cost-effective polyester microdevices with cell phone image analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DuVall, Jacquelyn A; Cabaniss, Scott T; Angotti, Morgan L; Moore, John H; Abhyankar, Mayuresh; Shukla, Nishant; Mills, Daniel L; Kessel, Bryan G; Garner, Gavin T; Swami, Nathan S; Landers, James P

    2016-10-07

    Pathogen detection has traditionally been accomplished by utilizing methods such as cell culture, immunoassays, and nucleic acid amplification tests; however, these methods are not easily implemented in resource-limited settings because special equipment for detection and thermal cycling is often required. In this study, we present a magnetic bead aggregation assay coupled to an inexpensive microfluidic fabrication technique that allows for cell phone detection and analysis of a notable pathogen in less than one hour. Detection is achieved through the use of a custom-built system that allows for fluid flow control via centrifugal force, as well as manipulation of magnetic beads with an adjustable rotating magnetic field. Cell phone image capture and analysis is housed in a 3D-printed case with LED backlighting and a lid-mounted Android phone. A custom-written application (app.) is employed to interrogate images for the extent of aggregation present following loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) coupled to product-inhibited bead aggregation (PiBA) for detection of target sequences. Clostridium difficile is a pathogen of increasing interest due to its causative role in intestinal infections following antibiotic treatment, and was therefore chosen as the pathogen of interest in the present study to demonstrate the rapid, cost-effective, and sequence-specific detection capabilities of the microfluidic platform described herein.

  10. Establishing a safe, rapid, convenient and low-cost antiviral assay of interferon bioactivity based on recombinant VSV expressing GFP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Weiye; Wen, Zhiyuan; Zhang, Jialin; Li, Cuicui; Huang, Kehe; Bu, Zhigao

    2017-08-20

    The methods of the quantitative assay of the antiviral activity of interferons (IFNs) (type I, II or III) are very important during carrying out of the research of them, since they were found. Here a recombinant vesicular stomatitis virus expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) (VSV/GFP) and MDBK cells were used to develop an antiviral assay (AVA) for IFNs. This method was carried out on a 96-well cell culture plate, and the half reduction of virus replication was quantified by assaying GFP. To quantify GFP, cell lysis buffer was directly added to the wells infected with VSV/GFP to lyse cells, the VSV/GFP was then inactivated, and relative fluorescence unit (RFU) of GFP was measured and used to calculate the antiviral activity. This method needed only one step instead of three steps in the staining method with naphthol blue black, medium with phenol red can be used, and it had good reproducibility. The GFP-containing samples could be stored at 4°C in a wet box for at least 1 week without affecting the assay results. In addition, the results obtained with this method were similar to those obtained with the staining method. In conclusion, a safe, rapid, convenient and low-cost AVA of IFN based on recombinant VSV/GFP was established. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  11. Rapid health needs assessment following hurricane Andrew--Florida and Louisiana, 1992.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-09-18

    Following the impact phase of Hurricane Andrew in Florida (August 24) and Louisiana (August 26) (Figure 1), the primary objectives of the public health response have been to address the health and medical needs of residents in the storm-damaged areas and to provide data for relief interventions and decision-making. This report presents the combined findings from rapid health needs assessment surveys conducted by state health departments with CDC assistance 3-10 days postimpact.

  12. The FIBRO System: A Rapid Strategy for Assessment and Management of Fibromyalgia Syndrome

    OpenAIRE

    Boomershine, Chad S

    2010-01-01

    Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a complex disorder of widespread pain and tenderness associated with numerous other symptoms including fatigue, cognitive dysfunction, nonrestorative sleep, depression, anxiety, and stiffness. While new diagnostic criteria and previous management guidelines require quantitation of the severity of associated FMS symptoms experienced by individual patients, no system for rapid patient assessment has been made available to provide a basis for diagnosis, treatment s...

  13. Value of databases other than medline for rapid health technology assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzetti, Diane L; Topfer, Leigh-Ann; Dennett, Liz; Clement, Fiona

    2014-04-01

    The objective of this study was to explore the degree to which databases other than MEDLINE contribute studies relevant for inclusion in rapid health technology assessments (HTA). We determined the extent to which the clinical, economic, and social studies included in twenty-one full and four rapid HTAs published by three Canadian HTA agencies from 2007 to 2012 were indexed in MEDLINE. Other electronic databases, including EMBASE, were then searched, in sequence, to assess whether or not they indexed studies not found in MEDLINE. Assessment topics ranged from purely clinical (e.g., drug-eluting stents) to those with broader social implications (e.g., spousal violence). MEDLINE contributed the majority of studies in all but two HTA reports, indexing a mean of 89.6 percent of clinical studies across all HTAs, and 88.3 percent of all clinical, economic, and social studies in twenty-four of twenty-five HTAs. While EMBASE contributed unique studies to twenty-two of twenty-five HTAs, three rapid HTAs did not include any EMBASE studies. In some instances, PsycINFO and CINAHL contributed as many, if not more, non-MEDLINE studies than EMBASE. Our findings highlight the importance of assessing the topic-specific relative value of including EMBASE, or more specialized databases, in HTA search protocols. Although MEDLINE continues to be a key resource for HTAs, the time and resource limitations inherent in the production of rapid HTAs require that researchers carefully consider the value and limitations of other information sources to identify relevant studies.

  14. The Cost of Commonality: Assessing Value in Joint Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    interdependent networks using game theory . Stakeholders in such networks share a common but not identical range of objectives. Parochial interests prevent...network are often undertaken irrespective of common goals. This consequence is a social dilemma known as the tragedy of the commons . The program...transaction cost theories only partially explain the program dynamics that erode joint commonality . Conceptual designs for complex systems in

  15. Using multilevel models for assessing the variability of multinational resource use and cost data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grieve, Richard; Nixon, Richard; Thompson, Simon G; Normand, Charles

    2005-02-01

    Multinational economic evaluations often calculate a single measure of cost-effectiveness using cost data pooled across several countries. To assess the validity of pooling international cost data the reasons for cost variation across countries need to be assessed. Previously, ordinary least-squares (OLS) regression models have been used to identify factors associated with variability in resource use and total costs. However, multilevel models (MLMs), which accommodate the hierarchical structure of the data, may be more appropriate. This paper compares these different techniques using a multinational dataset comprising case-mix, resource use and cost data on 1300 stroke admissions from 13 centres in 11 European countries. OLS and MLMs were used to estimate the effect of patient and centre-level covariates on the total length of hospital stay (LOS) and total cost. MLMs with normal and gamma distributions for the data within centres were compared. The results from the OLS model showed that both patient and centre-level covariates were associated with LOS and total cost. The estimates from the MLMs showed that none of the centre-level characteristics were associated with LOS, and the level of spending on health was the centre-level variable most highly associated with total cost. We conclude that using OLS models for assessing international variation can lead to incorrect inferences, and that MLMs are more appropriate for assessing why resource use and costs vary across centres. Copyright (c) 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  16. Flood damage in Italy: towards an assessment model of reconstruction costs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterlacchini, Simone; Zazzeri, Marco; Genovese, Elisabetta; Modica, Marco; Zoboli, Roberto

    2016-04-01

    Recent decades in Italy have seen a very rapid expansion of urbanisation in terms of physical assets, while demographics have remained stable. Both the characteristics of Italian soil and anthropic development, along with repeated global climatic stress, have made the country vulnerable to floods, the intensity of which is increasingly alarming. The combination of these trends will contribute to large financial losses due to property damage in the absence of specific mitigation strategies. The present study focuses on the province of Sondrio in Northern Italy (area of about 3,200 km²), which is home to more than 180,000 inhabitants and the population is growing slightly. It is clearly a hot spot for flood exposure, as it is primarily a mountainous area where floods and flash floods hit frequently. The model we use for assessing potential flood damage determines risk scenarios by overlaying flood hazard maps and economic asset data. In Italy, hazard maps are provided by Regional Authorities through the Hydrogeological System Management Plan (PAI) based on EU Flood Directive guidelines. The PAI in the study area includes both the large plain and the secondary river system and considers three hazard scenarios of Low, Medium and High Frequency associated with return periods of 20, 200 and 500 years and related water levels. By an overlay of PAI maps and residential areas, visualized on a GIS, we determine which existing built-up areas are at risk for flood according to each scenario. Then we investigate the value of physical assets potentially affected by floods in terms of market values, using the database of the Italian Property Market Observatory (OMI), and in terms of reconstruction costs, by considering synthetic cost indexes of predominant building types (from census information) and PAI water height. This study illustrates a methodology to assess flood damage in urban settlements and aims to determine general guidelines that can be extended throughout Italy

  17. Assessing DRG cost accounting with respect to resource allocation and tariff calculation: the case of Germany

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to analyze the German diagnosis related groups (G-DRG) cost accounting scheme by assessing its resource allocation at hospital level and its tariff calculation at national level. First, the paper reviews and assesses the three steps in the G-DRG resource allocation scheme at hospital level: (1) the groundwork; (2) cost-center accounting; and (3) patient-level costing. Second, the paper reviews and assesses the three steps in G-DRG national tariff calculation: (1) plausibility checks; (2) inlier calculation; and (3) the “one hospital” approach. The assessment is based on the two main goals of G-DRG introduction: improving transparency and efficiency. A further empirical assessment attests high costing quality. The G-DRG cost accounting scheme shows high system quality in resource allocation at hospital level, with limitations concerning a managerially relevant full cost approach and limitations in terms of advanced activity-based costing at patient-level. However, the scheme has serious flaws in national tariff calculation: inlier calculation is normative, and the “one hospital” model causes cost bias, adjustment and representativeness issues. The G-DRG system was designed for reimbursement calculation, but developed to a standard with strategic management implications, generalized by the idea of adapting a hospital’s cost structures to DRG revenues. This combination causes problems in actual hospital financing, although resource allocation is advanced at hospital level. PMID:22935314

  18. REAP and WAVE: new tools to rapidly assess/discuss nutrition with patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gans, Kim M; Ross, Elizabeth; Barner, Claudia W; Wylie-Rosett, Judith; McMurray, Jerome; Eaton, Charles

    2003-02-01

    Dietary changes can be helpful in preventing or treating a variety of prevalent health problems. Physicians can be helpful in helping patients make positive dietary changes, be physically active and lose weight, but, for a variety of reasons, many physicians do little nutrition counseling. There is a need for brief, user-friendly tools to enable physicians to rapidly and accurately assess patients' diets and exercise habits as well as provide information to aid the physician in delivering effective nutrition counseling. The purpose of this paper is to discuss two new tools, WAVE and REAP, that have been developed by the Nutrition Academic Award to help physicians and other health care providers conduct nutrition assessment and counseling with their patients in a practical and effective manner. The WAVE acronym and tool is designed to encourage provider/patient dialogue about the pros and cons of the patients' current status related to Weight, Activity, Variety and Excess. The Rapid Eating and Activity Assessment for Patients (REAP) is a brief validated questionnaire that is designed to aid providers in performing a brief assessment of diet and physical activity. An accompanying Physician Key aids the provider in discussing the patient's answers and counseling them appropriately. REAP and WAVE can be helpful tools to facilitate nutrition assessment and counseling in the provider office. Depending on patients' health priorities and how much time is available, these tools can be used in a variety of ways to discuss nutrition with patients during a clinical encounter in 1-9 min.

  19. Data collection costs in industrial environments for three occupational posture exposure assessment methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Documentation of posture measurement costs is rare and cost models that do exist are generally naïve. This paper provides a comprehensive cost model for biomechanical exposure assessment in occupational studies, documents the monetary costs of three exposure assessment methods for different stakeholders in data collection, and uses simulations to evaluate the relative importance of cost components. Methods Trunk and shoulder posture variables were assessed for 27 aircraft baggage handlers for 3 full shifts each using three methods typical to ergonomic studies: self-report via questionnaire, observation via video film, and full-shift inclinometer registration. The cost model accounted for expenses related to meetings to plan the study, administration, recruitment, equipment, training of data collectors, travel, and onsite data collection. Sensitivity analyses were conducted using simulated study parameters and cost components to investigate the impact on total study cost. Results Inclinometry was the most expensive method (with a total study cost of € 66,657), followed by observation (€ 55,369) and then self report (€ 36,865). The majority of costs (90%) were borne by researchers. Study design parameters such as sample size, measurement scheduling and spacing, concurrent measurements, location and travel, and equipment acquisition were shown to have wide-ranging impacts on costs. Conclusions This study provided a general cost modeling approach that can facilitate decision making and planning of data collection in future studies, as well as investigation into cost efficiency and cost efficient study design. Empirical cost data from a large field study demonstrated the usefulness of the proposed models. PMID:22738341

  20. Can rapid assessment protocols be used to judge sediment impairment in gravel-bed streams? A commentary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas E. Lisle; John M. Buffington; Peter R. Wilcock; Kristin Bunte

    2015-01-01

    Land management agencies commonly use rapid assessments to evaluate the impairment of gravel-bed streams by sediment inputs from anthropogenic sources. We question whether rapid assessment can be used to reliably judge sediment impairment at a site or in a region. Beyond the challenges of repeatable and accurate sampling, we argue that a single metric or protocol is...

  1. RAPID-N: Assessing and mapping the risk of natural-hazard impact at industrial installations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girgin, Serkan; Krausmann, Elisabeth

    2015-04-01

    Natural hazard-triggered technological accidents (so-called Natech accidents) at hazardous installations can have major consequences due to the potential for release of hazardous materials, fires and explosions. Effective Natech risk reduction requires the identification of areas where this risk is high. However, recent studies have shown that there are hardly any methodologies and tools that would allow authorities to identify these areas. To work towards closing this gap, the European Commission's Joint Research Centre has developed the rapid Natech risk assessment and mapping framework RAPID-N. The tool, which is implemented in an online web-based environment, is unique in that it contains all functionalities required for running a full Natech risk analysis simulation (natural hazards severity estimation, equipment damage probability and severity calculation, modeling of the consequences of loss of containment scenarios) and for visualizing its results. The output of RAPID-N are risk summary reports and interactive risk maps which can be used for decision making. Currently, the tool focuses on Natech risk due to earthquakes at industrial installations. However, it will be extended to also analyse and map Natech risk due to floods in the near future. RAPID-N is available at http://rapidn.jrc.ec.europa.eu. This presentation will discuss the results of case-study calculations performed for selected flammable and toxic substances to test the capabilities of RAPID-N both for single- and multi-site earthquake Natech risk assessment. For this purpose, an Istanbul earthquake scenario provided by the Turkish government was used. The results of the exercise show that RAPID-N is a valuable decision-support tool that assesses the Natech risk and maps the consequence end-point distances. These end-point distances are currently defined by 7 kPa overpressure for Vapour Cloud Explosions, 2nd degree burns for pool fire (which is equivalent to a heat radiation of 5 kW/m2 for 40s

  2. A comparative analysis of costs of single and dual rapid HIV and syphilis diagnostics: results from a randomised controlled trial in Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obure, Carol Dayo; Gaitan-Duarte, Hernando; Losada Saenz, Ricardo; Gonzalez, Lina; Angel-Muller, Edith; Laverty, Maura; Perez, Freddy

    2017-11-01

    HIV and congenital syphilis are major public health burdens contributing to substantial perinatal morbidity and mortality globally. Although studies have reported on the costs and cost-effectiveness of rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) for syphilis screening within antenatal care in a number of resource-constrained settings, empirical evidence on country-specific cost and estimates of single RDTs compared with dual RDTs for HIV and syphilis are limited. A cluster randomised controlled study design was used to compare the incremental costs of two testing algorithms: (1) single RDTs for HIV and syphilis and (2) dual RDTs for HIV and syphilis, in 12 health facilities in Bogota and Cali, Colombia. The costs of single HIV and syphilis RDTs and dual HIV and syphilis RDTs were collected from each of the health facilities. The economic costs per woman tested for HIV and syphilis and costs per woman treated for syphilis defined as the total costs required to test and treat one woman for syphilis were estimated. A total of 2214 women were tested in the study facilities. Cost per pregnant woman tested and cost per woman treated for syphilis were US$10.26 and US$607.99, respectively in the single RDT arm. For the dual RDTs, the cost per pregnant woman tested for HIV and syphilis and cost per woman treated for syphilis were US$15.89 and US$1859.26, respectively. Overall costs per woman tested for HIV and syphilis and cost per woman treated for syphilis were lower in Cali compared with Bogota across both intervention arms. Staff costs accounted for the largest proportion of costs while treatment costs comprised <1% of the preventive programme. Findings show lower average costs for single RDTs compared with dual RDTs with costs sensitive to personnel costs and the scale of output at the health facilities. NCT02454816; results. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/.

  3. Rapid Assessment of the Toxicity of Fungal Compounds Using Luminescent Vibrio qinghaiensis sp. Q67

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qijie Jian

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Most tropical fruits after harvest are very perishable because of fungal infection. Since some pathogenic fungi can produce hazardous compounds such as mycotoxins, novel rapid and effective methods to assess those hazardous compounds are urgently needed. Herein we report that Vibrio qinghaiensis sp. Q67, a luminescent bacterium, can be used to rapidly assess the toxicities of mycotoxins and cultures from mycotoxin-producing pathogens. A good correlation (R2 > 0.98 between concentrations of the mycotoxins (fumonisin B1, deoxynivalenol, zearalenone, ochratoxin A, patulin, and citrinin and the luminous intensity of V. qinghaiensis sp. Q67 was obtained. Furthermore, significant correlations (R2 > 0.96 between the amount of mycotoxin and the luminous intensity from the cultures of 10 major mycotoxin-producing pathogens were also observed. In addition, Fusarium proliferatum (half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50 = 17.49% exhibited greater luminescence suppression than Fusarium semitectum (IC50 = 92.56% or Fusarium oxysporum (IC50 = 28.61%, which was in agreement with the existing higher levels of fumonisin B1, fumonisin B2, and deoxynivalenol, which were measured by high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. These results suggest that V. qinghaiensis sp. Q67 is a promising alternative for the rapid evaluation of the toxicity of fungal mycotoxins.

  4. Rapid diagnosis and intraoperative margin assessment of human lung cancer with fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mengyan Wang

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available A method of rapidly differentiating lung tumor from healthy tissue is extraordinarily needed for both the diagnosis and the intraoperative margin assessment. We assessed the ability of fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM for differentiating human lung cancer and normal tissues with the autofluorescence, and also elucidated the mechanism in tissue studies and cell studies. A 15-patient testing group was used to compare FLIM results with traditional histopathology diagnosis. Based on the endogenous fluorescence lifetimes of the testing group, a criterion line was proposed to distinguish normal and cancerous tissues. Then by blinded examined 41 sections from the validation group of other 16 patients, the sensitivity and specificity of FLIM were determined. The cellular metabolism was studied with specific perturbations of oxidative phosphorylation and glycolysis in cell studies. The fluorescence lifetime of cancerous lung tissues is consistently lower than normal tissues, and this is due to the both decrease of reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD lifetimes. A criterion line of lifetime at 1920 ps can be given for differentiating human lung cancer and normal tissues.The sensitivity and specificity of FLIM for lung cancer diagnosis were determined as 92.9% and 92.3%. These findings suggest that NADH and FAD can be used to rapidly diagnose lung cancer. FLIM is a rapid, accurate and highly sensitive technique in the judgment during lung cancer surgery and it can be potential in earlier cancer detection.

  5. Rapid diagnosis and intraoperative margin assessment of human lung cancer with fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Mengyan; Tang, Feng; Pan, Xiaobo; Yao, Longfang; Wang, Xinyi; Jing, Yueyue; Ma, Jiong; Wang, Guifang; Mi, Lan

    2017-12-01

    A method of rapidly differentiating lung tumor from healthy tissue is extraordinarily needed for both the diagnosis and the intraoperative margin assessment. We assessed the ability of fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) for differentiating human lung cancer and normal tissues with the autofluorescence, and also elucidated the mechanism in tissue studies and cell studies. A 15-patient testing group was used to compare FLIM results with traditional histopathology diagnosis. Based on the endogenous fluorescence lifetimes of the testing group, a criterion line was proposed to distinguish normal and cancerous tissues. Then by blinded examined 41 sections from the validation group of other 16 patients, the sensitivity and specificity of FLIM were determined. The cellular metabolism was studied with specific perturbations of oxidative phosphorylation and glycolysis in cell studies. The fluorescence lifetime of cancerous lung tissues is consistently lower than normal tissues, and this is due to the both decrease of reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) lifetimes. A criterion line of lifetime at 1920 ps can be given for differentiating human lung cancer and normal tissues.The sensitivity and specificity of FLIM for lung cancer diagnosis were determined as 92.9% and 92.3%. These findings suggest that NADH and FAD can be used to rapidly diagnose lung cancer. FLIM is a rapid, accurate and highly sensitive technique in the judgment during lung cancer surgery and it can be potential in earlier cancer detection.

  6. Picture Pile: A citizen-powered tool for rapid post-disaster damage assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danylo, Olha; Sturn, Tobias; Giovando, Cristiano; Moorthy, Inian; Fritz, Steffen; See, Linda; Kapur, Ravi; Girardot, Blake; Ajmar, Andrea; Giulio Tonolo, Fabio; Reinicke, Tobias; Mathieu, Pierre Philippe; Duerauer, Martina

    2017-04-01

    According to the World Bank's global risk analysis, around 34% of the total world's population lives in areas of high mortality risk from two or more natural hazards. Therefore, timely and innovative methods to rapidly assess damage to subsequently aid relief and recovery efforts are critical. In this field of post-disaster damage assessment, several crowdsourcing-based technological tools that engage citizens in carrying out various tasks, including data collection, satellite image analysis and online interactive mapping, have recently been developed. One such tool is Picture Pile, a cross-platform application that is designed as a generic and flexible tool for ingesting satellite imagery for rapid classification. As part of the ESA's Crowd4Sat initiative led by Imperative Space, this study develops a workflow for employing Picture Pile for rapid post-disaster damage assessment. We outline how satellite image interpretation tasks within Picture Pile can be crowdsourced using the example of Hurricane Matthew, which affected large regions of Haiti in September 2016. The application provides simple microtasks, where the user is presented with satellite images and is asked a simple yes/no question. A "before" disaster satellite image is displayed next to an "after" disaster image and the user is asked to assess whether there is any visible, detectable damage. The question is formulated precisely to focus the user's attention on a particular aspect of the damage. The user-interface of Picture Pile is also built for users to rapidly classify the images by swiping to indicate their answer, thereby efficiently completing the microstask. The proposed approach will not only help to increase citizen awareness of natural disasters, but also provide them with a unique opportunity to contribute directly to relief efforts. Furthermore, to gain confidence in the crowdsourced results, quality assurance methods were integrated during the testing phase of the application using image

  7. Patient safety competencies in undergraduate nursing students: a rapid evidence assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bianchi, Monica; Bressan, Valentina; Cadorin, Lucia; Pagnucci, Nicola; Tolotti, Angela; Valcarenghi, Dario; Watson, Roger; Bagnasco, Annamaria; Sasso, Loredana

    2016-12-01

    To identify patient safety competencies, and determine the clinical learning environments that facilitate the development of patient safety competencies in nursing students. Patient safety in nursing education is of key importance for health professional environments, settings and care systems. To be effective, safe nursing practice requires a good integration between increasing knowledge and the different clinical practice settings. Nurse educators have the responsibility to develop effective learning processes and ensure patient safety. Rapid Evidence Assessment. MEDLINE, CINAHL, SCOPUS and ERIC were searched, yielding 500 citations published between 1 January 2004-30 September 2014. Following the Rapid Evidence Assessment process, 17 studies were included in this review. Hawker's (2002) quality assessment tool was used to assess the quality of the selected studies. Undergraduate nursing students need to develop competencies to ensure patient safety. The quality of the pedagogical atmosphere in the clinical setting has an important impact on the students' overall level of competence. Active student engagement in clinical processes stimulates their critical reasoning, improves interpersonal communication and facilitates adequate supervision and feedback. Few studies describe the nursing students' patient safety competencies and exactly what they need to learn. In addition, studies describe only briefly which clinical learning environments facilitate the development of patient safety competencies in nursing students. Further research is needed to identify additional pedagogical strategies and the specific characteristics of the clinical learning environments that encourage the development of nursing students' patient safety competencies. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Design and evaluation of a low-cost instrumented glove for hand function assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oess, Ninja P; Wanek, Johann; Curt, Armin

    2012-01-17

    The evaluation of hand function impairment following a neurological disorder (stroke and cervical spinal cord injury) requires sensitive, reliable and clinically meaningful assessment tools. Clinical performance measures of hand function mainly focus on the accomplishment of activities of daily living (ADL), typically rather complex tasks assessed by a gross ordinal rating; while the motor performance (i.e. kinematics) is less detailed. The goal of this study was to develop a low-cost instrumented glove to capture details in grasping, feasible for the assessment of hand function in clinical practice and rehabilitation settings. Different sensor types were tested for output signal stability over time by measuring the signal drift of their step responses. A system that converted sensor output voltages into angles based on pre-measured curves was implemented. Furthermore, the voltage supply of each sensor signal conditioning circuit was increased to enhance the sensor resolution. The repeatability of finger bending trajectories, recorded during the performance of three ADL-based tasks, was established using the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Moreover, the accuracy of the glove was evaluated by determining the agreement between angles measured with the embedded sensors and angles measured by traditional goniometry. In addition, the feasibility of the glove was tested in four patients with a pathological hand function caused by a cervical spinal cord injury (cSCI). A sensor type that displayed a stable output signal over time was identified, and a high sensor resolution of 0.5° was obtained. The evaluation of the glove's reliability yielded high ICC values (0.84 to 0.92) with an accuracy error of about ± 5°. Feasibility testing revealed that the glove was sensitive to distinguish different levels of hand function impairment in cSCI patients. The device satisfied the desired system requirements in terms of low cost, stable sensor signal over time, full

  9. Design and evaluation of a low-cost instrumented glove for hand function assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oess Ninja P

    2012-01-01

    in terms of low cost, stable sensor signal over time, full finger-flexion range of motion tracking and capability to monitor all three joints of one finger. The developed rapid calibration system for easy use (high feasibility and excellent psychometric properties (i.e. reliability and validity qualify the device for the assessment of hand function in clinical practice and rehabilitation settings.

  10. Acceptance of health technology assessment submissions with incremental cost-effectiveness ratios above the cost-effectiveness threshold

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Griffiths EA

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Elizabeth A Griffiths, Janek K Hendrich, Samuel DR Stoddart, Sean CM Walsh HERON™ Commercialization, PAREXEL International, London, UK Objectives: In health technology assessment (HTA agencies where cost-effectiveness plays a role in decision-making, an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER threshold is often used to inform reimbursement decisions. The acceptance of submissions with ICERs higher than the threshold was assessed across different agencies and across indications, in order to inform future reimbursement submissions. Methods: All HTA appraisals from May 2000 to May 2014 from National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE, Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC, Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC, and Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH were assessed. Multiple technology appraisals, resubmissions, vaccination programs, and requests for advice were excluded. Submissions not reporting an ICER, or for which an ICER could not be determined were also excluded. The remaining appraisals were reviewed, and the submitted ICER, recommendation, and reasoning behind the recommendation were extracted. Results: NICE recommended the highest proportion of submissions with ICERs higher than the threshold (34% accepted without restrictions; 20% with restrictions, followed by PBAC (16% accepted without restrictions; 4% with restrictions, SMC (11% accepted without restrictions; 14% accepted with restrictions, and CADTH (0% accepted without restrictions; 26% with restrictions. Overall, the majority of higher-than-threshold ICER submissions were classified into the "malignant disease and immunosuppression" therapeutic category; however, there was no notable variation in acceptance rates by disease area. Reasons for accepting submissions reporting ICERs above the threshold included high clinical benefit over the standard of care, and addressing an unmet therapeutic need. Conclusion: Acceptance of submissions

  11. Rapid Assessment of Aircraft Structural Topologies for Multidisciplinary Optimization and Weight Estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samareh, Jamshid A.; Sensmeier, mark D.; Stewart, Bret A.

    2006-01-01

    Algorithms for rapid generation of moderate-fidelity structural finite element models of air vehicle structures to allow more accurate weight estimation earlier in the vehicle design process have been developed. Application of these algorithms should help to rapidly assess many structural layouts before the start of the preliminary design phase and eliminate weight penalties imposed when actual structure weights exceed those estimated during conceptual design. By defining the structural topology in a fully parametric manner, the structure can be mapped to arbitrary vehicle configurations being considered during conceptual design optimization. Recent enhancements to this approach include the porting of the algorithms to a platform-independent software language Python, and modifications to specifically consider morphing aircraft-type configurations. Two sample cases which illustrate these recent developments are presented.

  12. O-antigen and virulence profiling of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli by a rapid and cost-effective DNA microarray colorimetric method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz eQuiñones

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC is a leading cause of foodborne illness worldwide. The present study developed the use of DNA microarrays with the ampliPHOX colorimetric method to rapidly detect and genotype STEC strains. A low-density 30-mer oligonucleotide DNA microarray was designed to target O-antigen gene clusters of eleven E. coli serogroups (O26, O45, O91, O103, O104, O111, O113, O121, O128, O145 and O157 that have been associated with the majority of STEC infections. In addition, the DNA microarray targeted eleven virulence genes, encoding adhesins, cytotoxins, proteases, and receptor proteins, which have been implicated in conferring increased ability to cause disease for STEC. Results from the validation experiments demonstrated that this microarray-based colorimetric method allowed for a rapid and accurate genotyping of STEC reference strains from environmental and clinical sources and from distinct geographical locations. Positive hybridization signals were detected only for probes targeting serotype and virulence genes known to be present in the STEC reference strains. Quantification analysis indicated that the mean pixel intensities of the signal for probes targeting O-antigen or virulence genes were at least three times higher when compared to the background. Furthermore, this microarray-based colorimetric method was then employed to genotype a group of E. coli isolates from watershed sediment and animal fecal samples that were collected from an important region for leafy-vegetable production in the central coast of California. The results indicated an accurate identification of O-type and virulence genes in the tested isolates and confirmed that the ampliPHOX colorimetric method with low density DNA microarrays enabled a fast assessment of the virulence potential of STEC using low-cost reagents and instrumentation.

  13. A rapid and low-cost microscopic observation drug susceptibility assay for detecting TB and MDR-TB among individuals infected by HIV in South India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S Solomon

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: The converging epidemics of HIV and tuberculosis (TB pose one of the greatest public health challenges of our time. Rapid diagnosis of TB is essential in view of its infectious nature, high burden of cases, and emergence of drug resistance. Objective: The purpose of this present study was to evaluate the feasibility of implementing the microscopic observation drug susceptibility (MODS assay, a novel assay for the diagnosis of TB and multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB directly from sputum specimens, in the Indian setting. Materials and Methods: This study involved a cross-sectional, blinded assessment of the MODS assay on 1036 suspected cases of pulmonary TB in HIV-positive and HIV-negative patients against the radiometric method, BD-BACTEC TB 460 system. Results: Overall, the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of the MODS assay in detecting MTB among TB suspected patients were 89.1%, 99.1%, 94.2%, 95.8%, respectively. In addition, in the diagnosis of drug-resistant TB, the MODS assay was 84.2% sensitive for those specimens reporting MDR, 87% sensitivity for those specimens reporting INH mono-resistance, and 100% sensitive for specimens reporting RIF mono-resistance. The median time to detection of TB in the MODS assay versus BACTEC was 9 versus 21 days (P < 0.001. Conclusion: Costing 5 to 10 times lesser than the automated culture methods, the MODS assay has the potential clinical utility as a simple and rapid method. It could be effectively used as an alternative method for diagnosing TB and detection of MDR-TB in a timely and affordable way in resource-limited settings.

  14. Assessment of generalizing cost indicators volume of industrial production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.O. Ivanenko

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Since the state of the industry largely determines the priorities for the development of complementary and service industries, engineering, transport, social and other infrastructure, employment and standard of living of the population, then the solution to the stabilization and development of the economy in market conditions is possible only when creating a competitive industrial production. At the same time an important place among the performance indicators of industrial enterprises occupy a total production cost parameters. The article outlines the procedure for the formation of indicators of gross, product and sales as the main aggregate price indices of industrial output. The study analyzed the relationship between these parameters. The advantages of the use of the net production in the economic analysis of production and sales compared with the gross and marketable products. Out lined directions to use these indicators to analyze the production of industrial enterprises.

  15. Cost-assessment Analysis of Local Vehicle Scrapping Facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabowski, Lukasz; Gliniak, Maciej; Polek, Daria; Gruca, Maria

    2017-12-01

    The purpose of the paper was to analyse the costs of recycling vehicles at local vehicle scrapping facility. The article contains regulations concerning vehicle decommissioning, describes the types of recovery, vehicles recycling networks, analyses the structure of a disassembly station, as well as the financial and institutional system in charge of dealing with the recycling of vehicles in Poland. The authors present the number of scrapped vehicles at local recycling company and the level of achieved recovery and recycling. The research presented in the article shows financial situation of the vehicle scrapping industry. In addition, it has been observed that the number of subsidies are directly proportional to the number of scrapped vehicles, and achieved levels of recycling and recovery depends on the percentage of incomplete vehicles.

  16. Utility and Usability of the Rapid Assessment of Hospital Procurement Barriers in Donation (RAPiD) as a Tool for OPO Hospital Development Staff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alolod, Gerard P; Traino, Heather M; Siminoff, Laura A

    2016-09-01

    Few systematic assessment tools are available to organ procurement organizations (OPOs) for evaluating donation climates of hospitals in their donation service areas (DSAs). The Rapid Assessment of hospital Procurement barriers in Donation (RAPiD) was developed for OPO hospital development staff to assess the organ donation climate of hospitals. To implement a national test of the RAPiD to examine its efficacy and usability by OPO hospital development staff. Two-arm randomized design, comparing implementation of RAPiD protocol between qualitatively trained researchers (n = 7) and OPO hospital development staff (n = 24); all evaluators received the same training assessments of high-yield hospitals. A total of 77 hospitals in DSAs of 8 OPOs. A total of 2552 health-care providers (HCPs) in high organ donor potential units. Twenty-four donation-related attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors. More HCPs interviewed in the autonomous condition were positive toward the concept of organ donation. However, HCPs in the assisted condition were more candid about and critical of the OPO. As for knowledge, fewer HCPs in the autonomous condition reported familiarity with the donation process, need for donors, and generally accepted timely referral criteria. With respect to behaviors, more respondents in the autonomous condition reported frequent or occasional contact with the OPO and routine or occasional referral criteria use. Due to issues of bias, inadequate research experience, conflicts of interest, and ongoing OPO hospital development initiatives, the RAPiD's usability by OPO-based hospital development staff is questionable and not recommended in its current form. A next generation of the RAPiD is described for future consideration. © 2016, NATCO.

  17. The FIBRO System: A Rapid Strategy for Assessment and Management of Fibromyalgia Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boomershine, Chad S

    2010-08-01

    Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a complex disorder of widespread pain and tenderness associated with numerous other symptoms including fatigue, cognitive dysfunction, nonrestorative sleep, depression, anxiety, and stiffness. While new diagnostic criteria and previous management guidelines require quantitation of the severity of associated FMS symptoms experienced by individual patients, no system for rapid patient assessment has been made available to provide a basis for diagnosis, treatment selection and follow-up for clinicians in busy practices who have limited time. This review presents the FIBRO System, an easily remembered system for FMS symptom quantitation using the FIBRO mnemonic along with verbal questions on simple 0-10 scales to assess symptom severity (the FIBRO Problem Scale) and response to treatment (the FIBRO Change Scale) along with recommendations for pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic therapies to address individual FIBRO symptoms. This symptom-based approach can improve the care of FMS patients by providing a comprehensive, focused assessment in limited time.

  18. Evaluation of corporate income tax compliance costs and compliance behaviour under the self-assessment system

    OpenAIRE

    Sapiei, Noor Sharoja

    2017-01-01

    Commitment to compliance may cause taxpayers to experience unnecessary compliance costs burden resulting in non-compliance behaviour. This study evaluates the tax compliance costs of corporate taxpayers and their compliance with the corporate income tax (CIT) reporting requirements under the Self-Assessment System (SAS) environment. Tax compliance costs, corporate characteristics, tax attitudinal aspects and the likely compliance behaviour of public listed companies (PLCs) are integrated into...

  19. Construct validity and factor structure of survey-based assessment of cost-related medication burden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burcu, Mehmet; Alexander, G Caleb; Ng, Xinyi; Harrington, Donna

    2015-02-01

    Millions of Americans are burdened by out-of-pocket prescription costs. Although many survey measures have been developed to assess this burden, the construct validity and the factor structure of these instruments have not been rigorously assessed. To characterize the factor structure and the construct validity of items assessing cost-related medication burden. We applied exploratory factor and confirmatory factor analyses to the 2009 Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey, focusing on 10 items assessing cost-related mediation burden among a nationally representative sample of community-dwelling Medicare beneficiaries. The fit of competing models was compared using several indices. The study population (N=8777) was predominantly aged over 65 years (83.3%), female (54.4%), and white (84.3%). Two distinct factors were present for the medication cost-reduction strategies: (1) cost-related medication nonadherence and (2) drug-shopping behaviors, not directly impacting medication compliance. The two factors were moderately correlated (r=0.55), highlighting the presence of a 2 distinct but related constructs for cost-related medication burden. An item assessing the use of mail or internet pharmacies did not load well on either factor and may not necessarily measure medication-related cost burden. An item assessing reduced spending on basic needs loaded strongly on the same factor with the cost-related medication nonadherence items, suggesting they together may represent extreme compensatory behaviors that may adversely affect health outcomes. Two distinct constructs were derived from these items examining cost-related medication burden. Although cost-related medication burden is often associated with nonadherence, drug-shopping behaviors that do not directly impact adherence are also important measure of this burden.

  20. Low-cost, rapidly-developed, 3D printed in vitro corpus callosum model for mucopolysaccharidosis type I [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Tabet

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The rising prevalence of high throughput screening and the general inability of (1 two dimensional (2D cell culture and (2 in vitro release studies to predict in vivo neurobiological and pharmacokinetic responses in humans has led to greater interest in more realistic three dimensional (3D benchtop platforms. Advantages of 3D human cell culture over its 2D analogue, or even animal models, include taking the effects of microgeometry and long-range topological features into consideration. In the era of personalized medicine, it has become increasingly valuable to screen candidate molecules and synergistic therapeutics at a patient-specific level, in particular for diseases that manifest in highly variable ways. The lack of established standards and the relatively arbitrary choice of probing conditions has limited in vitro drug release to a largely qualitative assessment as opposed to a predictive, quantitative measure of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in tissue. Here we report the methods used in the rapid, low-cost development of a 3D model of a mucopolysaccharidosis type I patient’s corpus callosum, which may be used for cell culture and drug release. The CAD model is developed from in vivo brain MRI tracing of the corpus callosum using open-source software, printed with poly (lactic-acid on a Makerbot Replicator 5X, UV-sterilized, and coated with poly (lysine for cellular adhesion. Adaptations of material and 3D printer for expanded applications are also discussed.

  1. Low-cost, rapidly-developed, 3D printed in vitro corpus callosum model for mucopolysaccharidosis type I [version 2; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Tabet

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The rising prevalence of high throughput screening and the general inability of (1 two dimensional (2D cell culture and (2 in vitro release studies to predict in vivo neurobiological and pharmacokinetic responses in humans has led to greater interest in more realistic three dimensional (3D benchtop platforms. Advantages of 3D human cell culture over its 2D analogue, or even animal models, include taking the effects of microgeometry and long-range topological features into consideration. In the era of personalized medicine, it has become increasingly valuable to screen candidate molecules and synergistic therapeutics at a patient-specific level, in particular for diseases that manifest in highly variable ways. The lack of established standards and the relatively arbitrary choice of probing conditions has limited in vitro drug release to a largely qualitative assessment as opposed to a predictive, quantitative measure of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in tissue. Here we report the methods used in the rapid, low-cost development of a 3D model of a mucopolysaccharidosis type I patient’s corpus callosum, which may be used for cell culture and drug release. The CAD model is developed from in vivo brain MRI tracing of the corpus callosum using open-source software, printed with poly (lactic-acid on a Makerbot Replicator 5X, UV-sterilized, and coated with poly (lysine for cellular adhesion. Adaptations of material and 3D printer for expanded applications are also discussed.

  2. Moving toward rapid and low-cost point-of-care molecular diagnostics with a repurposed 3D printer and RPA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Kamfai; Wong, Pui-Yan; Parikh, Chaitanya; Wong, Season

    2018-01-12

    Traditionally, the majority of nucleic acid amplification-based molecular diagnostic tests are done in centralized settings. In recent years, point-of-care tests have been developed for use in low-resource settings away from central laboratories. While most experts agree that point-of-care molecular tests are greatly needed, their availability as cost-effective and easy-to-operate tests remains an unmet goal. In this article, we discuss our efforts to develop a recombinase polymerase amplification reaction-based test that will meet these criteria. First, we describe our efforts in repurposing a low-cost 3D printer as a platform that can carry out medium-throughput, rapid, and high-performing nucleic acid extraction. Next, we address how these purified templates can be rapidly amplified and analyzed using the 3D printer's heated bed or the deconstructed, low-cost thermal cycler we have developed. In both approaches, real-time isothermal amplification and detection of template DNA or RNA can be accomplished using a low-cost portable detector or smartphone camera. Last, we demonstrate the capability of our technologies using foodborne pathogens and the Zika virus. Our low-cost approach does not employ complicated and high-cost components, making it suitable for resource-limited settings. When integrated and commercialized, it will offer simple sample-to-answer molecular diagnostics. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Developing Rapid and Cost-Effective Tools for Assessing Groundwater Impacts on Contaminated Sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    This research developed quick and inexpensive methods that can be useful in characterizing the interaction of water and solids within the GW/SW transition zone to explain processes that occur during physical contact between groundwater and sediments. The research used self-conta...

  4. Photographic assessment of nasal morphology following rapid maxillary expansion in children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omar Gabriel da Silva Filho

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The aim of the present study was to use facial analysis to determine the effects of rapid maxillary expansion (RME on nasal morphology in children in the stages of primary and mixed dentition, with posterior cross-bite. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Facial photographs (front view and profile of 60 patients in the pre-expansion period, immediate post-expansion period and one year following rapid maxillary expansion with a Haas appliance were evaluated on 2 occasions by 3 experienced orthodontists independently, with a 2-week interval between evaluations. The examiners were instructed to assess nasal morphology and had no knowledge regarding the content of the study. Intraexaminer and interexaminer agreement (assessed using the Kappa statistic was acceptable. RESULTS: From the analysis of the mode of the examiners' findings, no alterations in nasal morphology occurred regarding the following aspects: dorsum of nose, alar base, nasal width of middle third and nasal base. Alterations were only detected in the nasolabial angle in 1.64% of the patients between the pre-expansion and immediate post-expansion photographs. In 4.92% of the patients between the immediate post-expansion period and 1 year following expansion; and in 6.56% of the patients between the pre-expansion period and one year following expansion. CONCLUSIONS: RME performed on children in stages of primary and mixed dentition did not have any impact on nasal morphology, as assessed using facial analysis.

  5. Benchmarking an operational procedure for rapid flood mapping and risk assessment in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dottori, Francesco; Salamon, Peter; Kalas, Milan; Bianchi, Alessandra; Feyen, Luc

    2016-04-01

    The development of real-time methods for rapid flood mapping and risk assessment is crucial to improve emergency response and mitigate flood impacts. This work describes the benchmarking of an operational procedure for rapid flood risk assessment based on the flood predictions issued by the European Flood Awareness System (EFAS). The daily forecasts produced for the major European river networks are translated into event-based flood hazard maps using a large map catalogue derived from high-resolution hydrodynamic simulations, based on the hydro-meteorological dataset of EFAS. Flood hazard maps are then combined with exposure and vulnerability information, and the impacts of the forecasted flood events are evaluated in near real-time in terms of flood prone areas, potential economic damage, affected population, infrastructures and cities. An extensive testing of the operational procedure is carried out using the catastrophic floods of May 2014 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia. The reliability of the flood mapping methodology is tested against satellite-derived flood footprints, while ground-based estimations of economic damage and affected population is compared against modelled estimates. We evaluated the skill of flood hazard and risk estimations derived from EFAS flood forecasts with different lead times and combinations. The assessment includes a comparison of several alternative approaches to produce and present the information content, in order to meet the requests of EFAS users. The tests provided good results and showed the potential of the developed real-time operational procedure in helping emergency response and management.

  6. Amniotic fluid volume: Rapid MR-based assessment at 28-32 weeks gestation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hilliard, N.J.; Hawkes, R.; Patterson, A.J.; Graves, M.J.; Priest, A.N.; Hunter, S.; Set, P.A.; Lomas, D.J. [Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Department of Radiology, Cambridge (United Kingdom); Lees, C. [Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, Department of Obstetrics and Fetal Medicine, London (United Kingdom)

    2016-10-15

    This work evaluates rapid magnetic resonance projection hydrography (PH) based amniotic fluid volume (AFV) estimates against established routine ultrasound single deepest vertical pocket (SDVP) and amniotic fluid index (AFI) measurements, in utero at 28-32 weeks gestation. Manual multi-section planimetry (MSP) based measurement of AFV is used as a proxy reference standard. Thirty-five women with a healthy singleton pregnancy (20-41 years) attending routine antenatal ultrasound were recruited. SDVP and AFI were measured using ultrasound, with same day MRI assessing AFV with PH and MSP. The relationships between the respective techniques were assessed using linear regression analysis and Bland-Altman method comparison statistics. When comparing estimated AFV, a highly significant relationship was observed between PH and the reference standard MSP (R{sup 2} = 0.802, p < 0.001). For the US measurements, SDVP measurement related most closely to amniotic fluid volume, (R{sup 2} = 0.470, p < 0.001), with AFI demonstrating a weaker relationship (R{sup 2} = 0.208, p = 0.007). This study shows that rapid MRI based PH measurement is a better predictor of AFV, relating more closely to our proxy standard than established US techniques. Although larger validation studies across a range of gestational ages are required this approach could form part of MR fetal assessment, particularly where poly- or oligohydramnios is suspected. (orig.)

  7. Can juvenile corals be surveyed effectively using digital photography?: implications for rapid assessment techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgess, Scott C; Osborne, Kate; Sfiligoj, Bianca; Sweatman, Hugh

    2010-12-01

    The widespread decline of coral reefs requires integrated management measures across whole regions. Knowledge of demographic processes of reef organisms is important for informed management, yet current techniques for assessing such processes are time consuming, making it impractical to gather relevant information over large scales. We tested the usefulness of digital still photography as a rapid assessment technique to estimate coral recruitment--an important process in coral reef recovery. Estimates of the density and diversity of juvenile hard corals from digital images were compared with direct visual estimates from the same plots made in the field. Multiple plots were sampled on four reefs from a range of locations on Australia's Great Barrier Reef. On average, estimates of juvenile densities from photographic images were lower, in both absolute and relative terms, than that estimated from images. This was the case whether colonies <20 mm or <50 mm in diameter were considered. Overall differences between methods were generally greater at reefs where recruitment was higher, though proportional differences (density from images/density from direct visual census) still varied among reefs. Although the ranking of taxa, in terms of their densities, from the two methods were similar, the density of common genera was generally underestimated in images, and the occurrence of 'unknown' taxa was higher. We conclude that photographic images do not constitute a reliable rapid assessment method for estimating the spatial patterns in the density or diversity of juvenile hard corals.

  8. Photographic assessment of nasal morphology following rapid maxillary expansion in children

    Science.gov (United States)

    da SILVA FILHO, Omar Gabriel; LARA, Tulio Silva; AYUB, Priscila Vaz; OHASHI, Amanda Sayuri Cardoso; BERTOZ, Francisco Antônio

    2011-01-01

    Objective The aim of the present study was to use facial analysis to determine the effects of rapid maxillary expansion (RME) on nasal morphology in children in the stages of primary and mixed dentition, with posterior cross-bite. Material and Methods Facial photographs (front view and profile) of 60 patients in the pre-expansion period, immediate post-expansion period and one year following rapid maxillary expansion with a Haas appliance were evaluated on 2 occasions by 3 experienced orthodontists independently, with a 2-week interval between evaluations. The examiners were instructed to assess nasal morphology and had no knowledge regarding the content of the study. Intraexaminer and interexaminer agreement (assessed using the Kappa statistic) was acceptable. Results From the analysis of the mode of the examiners' findings, no alterations in nasal morphology occurred regarding the following aspects: dorsum of nose, alar base, nasal width of middle third and nasal base. Alterations were only detected in the nasolabial angle in 1.64% of the patients between the pre-expansion and immediate post-expansion photographs. In 4.92% of the patients between the immediate post-expansion period and 1 year following expansion; and in 6.56% of the patients between the pre-expansion period and one year following expansion. Conclusion RME performed on children in stages of primary and mixed dentition did not have any impact on nasal morphology, as assessed using facial analysis. PMID:21986660

  9. Ringhals Site Study 2013 - An assessment of the decommissioning cost for the Ringhals site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hansson, Tommy [Ringhals AB, Ringhals (Sweden); Norberg, Thomas [Solvina AB, Goeteborg (Sweden); Knutsson, Andreas; Fors, Patrik; Sandebert, Camilla [Vattenfall AB, Stockholm (Sweden)

    2013-03-15

    This report presents the decommissioning cost for the Ringhals site as of 2013. The objective has been to make a best estimate of the costs within the uncertainties of a budgetary estimate. To achieve this, the decommissioning costs have been assessed with support from TLG Services Inc., utilizing their knowledge and experience from U.S. decommissioning projects incorporated in their cost estimation platform DECCER. The 2013 estimate has included the development of a Ringhals-specific cost estimation method that allows for successive improvement in the future. In-house experiences have been included and the method is based on the present decommissioning strategy according to Ringhals decommissioning plan. Two basic approaches have been used in the cost assessment; a bottom up approach to develop unit cost factors (UCF) for recurrent work; and a specific analogy approach for cost estimating special items. The basic, activity-dependent, costs have been complemented by period-dependent costs, derived, among other things, from SKB's newly developed reference planning and organizational model for a Swedish decommissioning project. Furthermore, collateral costs based on the experiences of Barsebaeck have been included. As a final point, all costs have been adjusted for industrial standard contingencies, as suggested by TLG, to achieve a best estimate. In order to make the cost intelligible a comprehensive description of the assumptions, boundary conditions and general basis of the estimate is included in this report. All costs have been reported both according to the International Structure for Decommissioning Costing (ISDC) of Nuclear Installations published by OECD/NEA and according to the SKB developed EEF structure. Furthermore, common costs have been isolated to a theoretical unit 0 to make the cost for respective unit even more comparable on a national and international scale. The calculations show that the total cost for the decommissioning of the Ringhals

  10. Assessing health systems for type 1 diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa: developing a 'Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access'

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Courten Maximilian

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In order to improve the health of people with Type 1 diabetes in developing countries, a clear analysis of the constraints to insulin access and diabetes care is needed. We developed a Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access, comprising a series of questionnaires as well as a protocol for the gathering of other data through site visits, discussions, and document reviews. Methods The Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access draws on the principles of Rapid Assessment Protocols which have been developed and implemented in several different areas. This protocol was adapted through a thorough literature review on diabetes, chronic condition management and medicine supply in developing countries. A visit to three countries in sub-Saharan Africa and meetings with different experts in the field of diabetes helped refine the questionnaires. Following the development of the questionnaires these were tested with various people familiar with diabetes and/or healthcare in developing countries. The Protocol was piloted in Mozambique then refined and had two further iterations in Zambia and Mali. Translations of questionnaires were made into local languages when necessary, with back translation to ensure precision. Results In each country the protocol was implemented in 3 areas – the capital city, a large urban centre and a predominantly rural area and their respective surroundings. Interviews were carried out by local teams trained on how to use the tool. Data was then collected and entered into a database for analysis. Conclusion The Rapid Assessment Protocol for Insulin Access was developed to provide a situational analysis of Type 1 diabetes, in order to make recommendations to the national Ministries of Health and Diabetes Associations. It provided valuable information on patients' access to insulin, syringes, monitoring and care. It was thus able to sketch a picture of the health care system with regards to its ability to

  11. Rapid Assessment of Ecosystem Service Co-Benefits of Biodiversity Priority Areas in Madagascar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel A Neugarten

    Full Text Available The importance of ecosystems for supporting human well-being is increasingly recognized by both the conservation and development sectors. Our ability to conserve ecosystems that people rely on is often limited by a lack of spatially explicit data on the location and distribution of ecosystem services (ES, the benefits provided by nature to people. Thus there is a need to map ES to guide conservation investments, to ensure these co-benefits are maintained. To target conservation investments most effectively, ES assessments must be rigorous enough to support conservation planning, rapid enough to respond to decision-making timelines, and often must rely on existing data. We developed a framework for rapid spatial assessment of ES that relies on expert and stakeholder consultation, available data, and spatial analyses in order to rapidly identify sites providing multiple benefits. We applied the framework in Madagascar, a country with globally significant biodiversity and a high level of human dependence on ecosystems. Our objective was to identify the ES co-benefits of biodiversity priority areas in order to guide the investment strategy of a global conservation fund. We assessed key provisioning (fisheries, hunting and non-timber forest products, and water for domestic use, agriculture, and hydropower, regulating (climate mitigation, flood risk reduction and coastal protection, and cultural (nature tourism ES. We also conducted multi-criteria analyses to identify sites providing multiple benefits. While our approach has limitations, including the reliance on proximity-based indicators for several ES, the results were useful for targeting conservation investments by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF. Because our approach relies on available data, standardized methods for linking ES provision to ES use, and expert validation, it has the potential to quickly guide conservation planning and investment decisions in other data-poor regions.

  12. A rapid murine coma and behavior scale for quantitative assessment of murine cerebral malaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan W Carroll

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cerebral malaria (CM is a neurological syndrome that includes coma and seizures following malaria parasite infection. The pathophysiology is not fully understood and cannot be accounted for by infection alone: patients still succumb to CM, even if the underlying parasite infection has resolved. To that effect, there is no known adjuvant therapy for CM. Current murine CM (MCM models do not allow for rapid clinical identification of affected animals following infection. An animal model that more closely mimics the clinical features of human CM would be helpful in elucidating potential mechanisms of disease pathogenesis and evaluating new adjuvant therapies. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A quantitative, rapid murine coma and behavior scale (RMCBS comprised of 10 parameters was developed to assess MCM manifested in C57BL/6 mice infected with Plasmodium berghei ANKA (PbA. Using this method a single mouse can be completely assessed within 3 minutes. The RMCBS enables the operator to follow the evolution of the clinical syndrome, validated here by correlations with intracerebral hemorrhages. It provides a tool by which subjects can be identified as symptomatic prior to the initiation of trial treatment. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Since the RMCBS enables an operator to rapidly follow the course of disease, label a subject as affected or not, and correlate the level of illness with neuropathologic injury, it can ultimately be used to guide the initiation of treatment after the onset of cerebral disease (thus emulating the situation in the field. The RMCBS is a tool by which an adjuvant therapy can be objectively assessed.

  13. Rapid Assessment of Ecosystem Service Co-Benefits of Biodiversity Priority Areas in Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andriamaro, Luciano; Cano, Carlos Andres; Grantham, Hedley S.; Hole, David; Juhn, Daniel; McKinnon, Madeleine; Rasolohery, Andriambolantsoa; Steininger, Marc; Wright, Timothy Max

    2016-01-01

    The importance of ecosystems for supporting human well-being is increasingly recognized by both the conservation and development sectors. Our ability to conserve ecosystems that people rely on is often limited by a lack of spatially explicit data on the location and distribution of ecosystem services (ES), the benefits provided by nature to people. Thus there is a need to map ES to guide conservation investments, to ensure these co-benefits are maintained. To target conservation investments most effectively, ES assessments must be rigorous enough to support conservation planning, rapid enough to respond to decision-making timelines, and often must rely on existing data. We developed a framework for rapid spatial assessment of ES that relies on expert and stakeholder consultation, available data, and spatial analyses in order to rapidly identify sites providing multiple benefits. We applied the framework in Madagascar, a country with globally significant biodiversity and a high level of human dependence on ecosystems. Our objective was to identify the ES co-benefits of biodiversity priority areas in order to guide the investment strategy of a global conservation fund. We assessed key provisioning (fisheries, hunting and non-timber forest products, and water for domestic use, agriculture, and hydropower), regulating (climate mitigation, flood risk reduction and coastal protection), and cultural (nature tourism) ES. We also conducted multi-criteria analyses to identify sites providing multiple benefits. While our approach has limitations, including the reliance on proximity-based indicators for several ES, the results were useful for targeting conservation investments by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF). Because our approach relies on available data, standardized methods for linking ES provision to ES use, and expert validation, it has the potential to quickly guide conservation planning and investment decisions in other data-poor regions. PMID:28006005

  14. Cost efficiency assessment of automated quality control of precast structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaverzina Liudmila

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Relevance of the research is conditioned by the necessity to enhance the factory quality control of reinforced concrete structures based on integral assessment of their reliability. The current system of selective quality control of precast concrete structures does not provide reliability assurance of the whole lot of products. The present research aims to develop operational procedure and consider economic feasibility of automated quality control of precast RC structures. Quality control is performed each shift according to the developed software system based on probabilistic methods considering statistic variability of the controlled parameters. The critical criterion of operational integrity of structures is integral assessment of the reliability indicators. The following theoretical research methods were used in the study: probabilistic-statistical, methods of system and economic analysis. Validity of the obtained results and economic feasibility were proved by experimental studies including full-scale tests.

  15. Assessing Risk in Costing High-energy Accelerators: from Existing Projects to the Future Linear Collider

    CERN Document Server

    Lebrun, Philippe

    2010-01-01

    High-energy accelerators are large projects funded by public money, developed over the years and constructed via major industrial contracts both in advanced technology and in more conventional domains such as civil engineering and infrastructure, for which they often constitute one-of markets. Assessing their cost, as well as the risk and uncertainty associated with this assessment is therefore an essential part of project preparation and a justified requirement by the funding agencies. Stemming from the experience with large circular colliders at CERN, LEP and LHC, as well as with the Main Injector, the Tevatron Collider Experiments and Accelerator Upgrades, and the NOvA Experiment at Fermilab, we discuss sources of cost variance and derive cost risk assessment methods applicable to the future linear collider, through its two technical approaches for ILC and CLIC. We also address disparities in cost risk assessment imposed by regional differences in regulations, procedures and practices.

  16. Assessing DRG cost accounting with respect to resource allocation and tariff calculation: the case of Germany

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vogl, Matthias

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to analyze the German diagnosis related groups (G-DRG) cost accounting scheme by assessing its resource allocation at hospital level and its tariff calculation at national level...

  17. Operations Assessment of Launch Vehicle Architectures using Activity Based Cost Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Torres, Alex J.; McCleskey, Carey

    2000-01-01

    The growing emphasis on affordability for space transportation systems requires the assessment of new space vehicles for all life cycle activities, from design and development, through manufacturing and operations. This paper addresses the operational assessment of launch vehicles, focusing on modeling the ground support requirements of a vehicle architecture, and estimating the resulting costs and flight rate. This paper proposes the use of Activity Based Costing (ABC) modeling for this assessment. The model uses expert knowledge to determine the activities, the activity times and the activity costs based on vehicle design characteristics. The approach provides several advantages to current approaches to vehicle architecture assessment including easier validation and allowing vehicle designers to understand the cost and cycle time drivers.

  18. Urban MEMS based seismic network for post-earthquakes rapid disaster assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Alessandro, Antonino; Luzio, Dario; D'Anna, Giuseppe

    2014-05-01

    Life losses following disastrous earthquake depends mainly by the building vulnerability, intensity of shaking and timeliness of rescue operations. In recent decades, the increase in population and industrial density has significantly increased the exposure to earthquakes of urban areas. The potential impact of a strong earthquake on a town center can be reduced by timely and correct actions of the emergency management centers. A real time urban seismic network can drastically reduce casualties immediately following a strong earthquake, by timely providing information about the distribution of the ground shaking level. Emergency management centers, with functions in the immediate post-earthquake period, could be use this information to allocate and prioritize resources to minimize loss of human life. However, due to the high charges of the seismological instrumentation, the realization of an urban seismic network, which may allow reducing the rate of fatalities, has not been achieved. Recent technological developments in MEMS (Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems) technology could allow today the realization of a high-density urban seismic network for post-earthquakes rapid disaster assessment, suitable for the earthquake effects mitigation. In the 1990s, MEMS accelerometers revolutionized the automotive-airbag system industry and are today widely used in laptops, games controllers and mobile phones. Due to their great commercial successes, the research into and development of MEMS accelerometers are actively pursued around the world. Nowadays, the sensitivity and dynamics of these sensors are such to allow accurate recording of earthquakes with moderate to strong magnitude. Due to their low cost and small size, the MEMS accelerometers may be employed for the realization of high-density seismic networks. The MEMS accelerometers could be installed inside sensitive places (high vulnerability and exposure), such as schools, hospitals, public buildings and places of

  19. Uncorrected refractive errors, presbyopia and spectacle coverage: results from a rapid assessment of refractive error survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marmamula, Srinivas; Keeffe, Jill E; Rao, Gullapalli N

    2009-01-01

    To investigate the prevalence of uncorrected refractive errors, presbyopia and spectacle coverage in subjects aged 15-50 years using rapid assessment methodology in the Mahabubnagar district of Andhra Pradesh, India. A population-based cross sectional study was conducted using cluster random sampling to enumerate 3,300 subjects from 55 clusters. Unaided, aided and pinhole visual acuity was assessed using a LogMAR chart at a distance of 4 meters. Near vision was assessed using N notation chart. Uncorrected refractive error was defined as presenting visual acuity worse than 6/12 but improving to at least 6/12 or better on using a pinhole. Presbyopia is defined as binocular near vision worse than N8 in subjects aged more than 35 years with binocular distance visual acuity of 6/12 or better. Of the 3,300 subjects enumerated from 55 clusters, 3,203 (97%) subjects were available for examination. Of these, 1,496 (46.7%) were females and 930 (29%) were > or = 40 years. Age and gender adjusted prevalence of uncorrected refractive errors causing visual impairment in the better eye was 2.7% (95% CI, 2.1-3.2%). Presbyopia was present in 690 (63.7%, 95% CI, 60.8-66.6%) subjects aged over 35 years. Spectacle coverage for refractive error was 29% and for presbyopia it was 19%. There is a large unmet need for refractive correction in this area in India. Rapid assessment methods are an effective means of assessing the need for services and the impact of models of care.

  20. Low-Cost and Rapid Fabrication of Metallic Nanostructures for Sensitive Biosensors Using Hot-Embossing and Dielectric-Heating Nanoimprint Methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuang-Li Lee

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available We propose two approaches—hot-embossing and dielectric-heating nanoimprinting methods—for low-cost and rapid fabrication of periodic nanostructures. Each nanofabrication process for the imprinted plastic nanostructures is completed within several seconds without the use of release agents and epoxy. Low-cost, large-area, and highly sensitive aluminum nanostructures on A4 size plastic films are fabricated by evaporating aluminum film on hot-embossing nanostructures. The narrowest bandwidth of the Fano resonance is only 2.7 nm in the visible light region. The periodic aluminum nanostructure achieves a figure of merit of 150, and an intensity sensitivity of 29,345%/RIU (refractive index unit. The rapid fabrication is also achieved by using radio-frequency (RF sensitive plastic films and a commercial RF welding machine. The dielectric-heating, using RF power, takes advantage of the rapid heating/cooling process and lower electric power consumption. The fabricated capped aluminum nanoslit array has a 5 nm Fano linewidth and 490.46 nm/RIU wavelength sensitivity. The biosensing capabilities of the metallic nanostructures are further verified by measuring antigen–antibody interactions using bovine serum albumin (BSA and anti-BSA. These rapid and high-throughput fabrication methods can benefit low-cost, highly sensitive biosensors and other sensing applications.

  1. The use of rapid review methods in health technology assessments: 3 case studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaltenthaler, Eva; Cooper, Katy; Pandor, Abdullah; Martyn-St James, Marrissa; Chatters, Robin; Wong, Ruth

    2016-08-26

    Rapid reviews are of increasing importance within health technology assessment due to time and resource constraints. There are many rapid review methods available although there is little guidance as to the most suitable methods. We present three case studies employing differing methods to suit the evidence base for each review and outline some issues to consider when selecting an appropriate method. Three recently completed systematic review short reports produced for the UK National Institute for Health Research were examined. Different approaches to rapid review methods were used in the three reports which were undertaken to inform the commissioning of services within the NHS and to inform future trial design. We describe the methods used, the reasoning behind the choice of methods and explore the strengths and weaknesses of each method. Rapid review methods were chosen to meet the needs of the review and each review had distinctly different challenges such as heterogeneity in terms of populations, interventions, comparators and outcome measures (PICO) and/or large numbers of relevant trials. All reviews included at least 10 randomised controlled trials (RCTs), each with numerous included outcomes. For the first case study (sexual health interventions), very diverse studies in terms of PICO were included. P-values and summary information only were presented due to substantial heterogeneity between studies and outcomes measured. For the second case study (premature ejaculation treatments), there were over 100 RCTs but also several existing systematic reviews. Data for meta-analyses were extracted directly from existing systematic reviews with new RCT data added where available. For the final case study (cannabis cessation therapies), studies included a wide range of interventions and considerable variation in study populations and outcomes. A brief summary of the key findings for each study was presented and narrative synthesis used to summarise results for each

  2. On-farm welfare assessment systems: what are the recording costs?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Jan Tind; Nielsen, Tine Rousing; Møller, Steen Henrik

    2007-01-01

    To illustrate that different approaches lead to different costs a cost calculation on four different welfare assessment systems for four different animal species has been carried out; an integrated pig herd (450 sows), a dairy cattle herd with automatic milking (90 cows), an organic egg production...... system (3000 layers) and a mink farm (1000 mink). We calculated the cost to be: E 375 per annum for the mink farm and E 2205, E 2430 and E 2435 for the egg production system, the AMS dairy herd and the integrated pig farm, respectively. The costs can be reduced by: reducing the number of indicators and...

  3. Rapid Traversability Assessment in 2.5D Grid-based Map on Rough Terrain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Huang

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a rapid traversability assessment approach based on an extended 2.5D grid-based representaion of the rough terrain. Stereo vision system is used to perceive the environment surrounding robot. Conventional 2D, 3D and other 2.5D grid maps determine the traversability indices of the grids directly from the sensor feedback, while our approach attempts to address the indices of terrain from multiple grids instead. By analyzing the properties of multiple grids that the robot is to traverse, passable grids are distinguished, which also takes the robot's size into account. Fuzzy logic framework is applied to extract traversabiltiy indices from the terrain characteristics. A soccer robot equipped with a stereo vision system is adopted for experiments. The results show that our map is capable of speeding the process of traversability assessment and providing an autonomous mobile robot with a appropriate representation of 3D uneven terrain profile.

  4. Face and Convergent Validity of Persian Version of Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA Checklist

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afrouz Armal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The aim of this work was the translation, cultural adaptation and validation of the Persian version of the Rapid Office Stress Assessment (ROSA checklist. Material & Methods: This methodological study was conducted according of IQOLA method. 100 office worker were selected in order to carry out a psychometric evaluation of the ROSA checklist by performing validity (face and convergent analyses. The convergent validity was evaluated using RULA checklist. Results: Upon major changes made to the ROSA checklist during the translation/cultural adaptation process, face validity of the Persian version was obtained. Spearman correlation coefficient between total score of ROSA check list and RULA checklist was significant (r=0.76, p<0.0001. Conclusion: The results indicated that the translated version of the ROSA checklist is acceptable in terms of face validity, convergent validity in target society, and hence provides a useful instrument for assessing Iranian office workers

  5. Predicting Airport Screening Officers' Visual Search Competency With a Rapid Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitroff, Stephen R; Ericson, Justin M; Sharpe, Benjamin

    2017-11-01

    Objective The study's objective was to assess a new personnel selection and assessment tool for aviation security screeners. A mobile app was modified to create a tool, and the question was whether it could predict professional screeners' on-job performance. Background A variety of professions (airport security, radiology, the military, etc.) rely on visual search performance-being able to detect targets. Given the importance of such professions, it is necessary to maximize performance, and one means to do so is to select individuals who excel at visual search. A critical question is whether it is possible to predict search competency within a professional search environment. Method Professional searchers from the USA Transportation Security Administration (TSA) completed a rapid assessment on a tablet-based X-ray simulator (XRAY Screener, derived from the mobile technology app Airport Scanner; Kedlin Company). The assessment contained 72 trials that were simulated X-ray images of bags. Participants searched for prohibited items and tapped on them with their finger. Results Performance on the assessment significantly related to on-job performance measures for the TSA officers such that those who were better XRAY Screener performers were both more accurate and faster at the actual airport checkpoint. Conclusion XRAY Screener successfully predicted on-job performance for professional aviation security officers. While questions remain about the underlying cognitive mechanisms, this quick assessment was found to significantly predict on-job success for a task that relies on visual search performance. Application It may be possible to quickly assess an individual's visual search competency, which could help organizations select new hires and assess their current workforce.

  6. Rapid assessment of rice seed availability for wildlife in harvested fields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halstead, B.J.; Miller, M.R.; Casazza, Michael L.; Coates, P.S.; Farinha, M.A.; Benjamin, Gustafson K.; Yee, J.L.; Fleskes, J.P.

    2011-01-01

    Rice seed remaining in commercial fields after harvest (waste rice) is a critical food resource for wintering waterfowl in rice-growing regions of North America. Accurate and precise estimates of the seed mass density of waste rice are essential for planning waterfowl wintering habitat extents and management. In the Sacramento Valley of California, USA, the existing method for obtaining estimates of availability of waste rice in harvested fields produces relatively precise estimates, but the labor-, time-, and machineryintensive process is not practical for routine assessments needed to examine long-term trends in waste rice availability. We tested several experimental methods designed to rapidly derive estimates that would not be burdened with disadvantages of the existing method. We first conducted a simulation study of the efficiency of each method and then conducted field tests. For each approach, methods did not vary in root mean squared error, although some methods did exhibit bias for both simulations and field tests. Methods also varied substantially in the time to conduct each sample and in the number of samples required to detect a standard trend. Overall, modified line-intercept methods performed well for estimating the density of rice seeds. Waste rice in the straw, although not measured directly, can be accounted for by a positive relationship with density of rice on the ground. Rapid assessment of food availability is a useful tool to help waterfowl managers establish and implement wetland restoration and agricultural habitat-enhancement goals for wintering waterfowl. ?? 2011 The Wildlife Society.

  7. Rapid assessment of large scale vegetation change based on multi-temporal phenological analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Danlu; Guan, Yanning; Guo, Shan; Yan, Baoping; Xing, Zhi; Zhang, Chunyan; Piao, Yingchao; An, Xudong; Kang, Lihua

    2011-11-01

    Detecting vegetation change is critical for earth system and sustainability science. The existing methods, however, show several limitations, including inevitable selection of imagery acquisition dates, affection from vegetation related noise on temporal trajectory analysis, and assumptions due to vegetation classification model. This paper presents a multitemporal phenological frequency analysis over a relatively short period (MTPFA-SP) methodology to detect vegetation changes. This MTPFA-SP methodology bases on the amplitude components of fast Fourier transforming (FFT) and is implemented with two steps. First, NDVI time series over two periods are transformed with FFT into frequency domain, separately. Second, amplitude components with phenological information from Step 1 are selected for further change comparison. In this methodology, component selection shows physical meanings of natural vegetation process in frequency domain. Comparisons among those selected components help enhance the ability to rapidly detect vegetation changes. To validate this MTPFA-SP methodology, we detect changes between two periods (2001-2005 and 2006-2010) in the eastern Tibet Plateau area and make two kinds of assessments. The first is for a larger scale, including statistic analysis of altitudinal zonality and latitudinal zonality. The second assessment is for rapid detection of vegetation change location. Landsat TM image were employed to validate the result.

  8. Use of refractometry and colorimetry as field methods to rapidly assess antimalarial drug quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Michael D; Nettey, Henry; Villalva Rojas, Ofelia; Pamanivong, Chansapha; Khounsaknalath, Lamphet; Grande Ortiz, Miguel; Newton, Paul N; Fernández, Facundo M; Vongsack, Latsamy; Manolin, Ot

    2007-01-04

    The proliferation of counterfeit and poor-quality drugs is a major public health problem; especially in developing countries lacking adequate resources to effectively monitor their prevalence. Simple and affordable field methods provide a practical means of rapidly monitoring drug quality in circumstances where more advanced techniques are not available. Therefore, we have evaluated refractometry, colorimetry and a technique combining both processes as simple and accurate field assays to rapidly test the quality of the commonly available antimalarial drugs; artesunate, chloroquine, quinine, and sulfadoxine. Method bias, sensitivity, specificity and accuracy relative to high-performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) analysis of drugs collected in the Lao PDR were assessed for each technique. The HPLC method for each drug was evaluated in terms of assay variability and accuracy. The accuracy of the combined method ranged from 0.96 to 1.00 for artesunate tablets, chloroquine injectables, quinine capsules, and sulfadoxine tablets while the accuracy was 0.78 for enterically coated chloroquine tablets. These techniques provide a generally accurate, yet simple and affordable means to assess drug quality in resource-poor settings.

  9. Utilizing web-based geodata for rapid disaster identification and assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Schmitt, Michael; Sickert, Salomon; Metzger, Alex; Krautblatter, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Developing methods to rapidly locate and quantify the impact of natural disasters can aid both the coordination of emergency response, and the long-term understanding of natural hazards in a range of environmental settings. Gaining such quantitative data in the aftermath of landslide events is particularly challenging, as the localized nature, steep terrain, and frequent damage to infrastructure caused by common triggering events (e.g. earthquakes, storms) complicates traditional methods of survey and data communication. As a result, the first, and often best overview of disastrous events is typically provided by eyewitness or first-responder photographs distributed through official, or social media networks. Although these images allow for an initial qualitative assessment of the event, their ad-hoc nature does not currently allow for either precise location, or quantitative evaluation of key event parameters (e.g. structural setting, geology, geometry, size, transport path, or total fall height). Here we present two tools designed to facilitate initial location and assessment of key event parameters using a combination of freely available geodata and information derived from eyewitness observations. These tools are currently under development, and rely on the adaptation of existing photogrammetric techniques in order to allow users to rapidly map and quantify event parameters from a combination of ad-hoc media photographs, and existing orthophoto and digital terrain model data (e.g. LiDAR, SRTM, ASTER). By incorporating results in freely-available GIS platforms such as Google Earth, local authorities will be able to to better assess and disseminate information regarding the impact of natural disasters in the critical hours following an event. We expect that quantitative data derived from events will provide important information to allow geohazard researchers to better assess landslide generation, and authorities to better plan responses to future triggering

  10. New drugs and clinical economics: analysis of cost effectiveness in the assessment of pharmaceutical innovations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenberg, J M

    1984-01-01

    New drugs undergo rigorous clinical testing to determine their efficacy and adverse effects. However, seldom is the potential financial impact of a new drug carefully assessed before its introduction. Cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness analyses provide methods of determining the effect of drugs and other services on costs of medical care. Methods of industrial engineering and cost accounting can be used to determine the additional cost of medical care associated with the drug; such cost finding provides more accurate economic data than does the use of hospital charges. This symposium includes two clinical economic studies of the potential effect of introducing a cephalosporin antibiotic that requires administration only once daily. Both studies estimate substantial savings in direct hospital expenditures.

  11. Relevance of new multispectral imagery for assessing tropical forest disturbance: RapidEye and WorldView-2

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Cho, Moses A

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The aims of this study were to assess utility of RapidEye imagery for predicting leaf nitrogen concentration and evaluate the effects of forest fragmentation on leaf nitrogen distribution in the Dukuduku forest, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. Rapid...

  12. Applying an improved rapid impact assessment matrix method to strategic environmental assessment of urban planning in China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Wei, E-mail: weili@bnu.edu.cn; Xie, Yuanbo, E-mail: former_007@163.com; Hao, Fanghua, E-mail: fanghua@bnu.edu.cn

    2014-04-01

    Strategic environmental assessment (SEA) has become an increasingly important decision-support tool for providing information on the environmental implications of a policy, plan, or program. The goal is to safeguard the environment and promote sustainable development at the strategic level. Despite major progress in implementing SEA practices internationally, developing countries, such as China, often lag behind in applying SEA methodology. Lack of available data and time constraints arising from tight schedules create problems. The rapid impact assessment matrix (RIAM) is a potential resource for breaking through such difficulties. Our analysis of RIAM applications suggested that it could become a tool for evaluating strategic alternatives because of its applicability in interdisciplinary settings, its transparency, and its short implementation timeframe. To make it more suitable for the SEA context, we have developed two major improvements to the conventional RIAM process: assignment of weights to assessment indicators and the development of an integrated environmental assessment score (IES). The improved RIAM process was employed in an SEA of the development plan for the Nansha District in Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong Province in China. It was used to assess five alternatives for development in Wanqingsha (WQS), a subunit of Nansha, where important ecological resources are located and where industrial development could impact the air quality in the neighboring Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). The evaluation identified WQS-A04 as the preferred alternative. This alternative involved a minimal amount of industrial development – 10% compared with the most intense development alternative – and included important wetland preservation plans. The assessment results have been incorporated into the officially approved development plan for Nansha. The improved RIAM methodology is well adapted to the technical aims of SEA and decision

  13. Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion Life Cycle Cost Assessment, Final Technical Report, 30 May 2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martel, Laura [Lockheed Martin, Manassas, VA (United States); Smith, Paul [John Halkyard and Associates: Glosten Associates, Houston, TX (United States); Rizea, Steven [Makai Ocean Engineering, Waimanalo, HI (United States); Van Ryzin, Joe [Makai Ocean Engineering, Waimanalo, HI (United States); Morgan, Charles [Planning Solutions, Inc., Vancouver, WA (United States); Noland, Gary [G. Noland and Associates, Inc., Pleasanton, CA (United States); Pavlosky, Rick [Lockheed Martin, Manassas, VA (United States); Thomas, Michael [Lockheed Martin, Manassas, VA (United States); Halkyard, John [John Halkyard and Associates: Glosten Associates, Houston, TX (United States)

    2012-05-30

    The Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) Life Cycle Cost Assessment (OLCCA) is a study performed by members of the Lockheed Martin (LM) OTEC Team under funding from the Department of Energy (DOE), Award No. DE-EE0002663, dated 01/01/2010. OLCCA objectives are to estimate procurement, operations and maintenance, and overhaul costs for two types of OTEC plants: -Plants moored to the sea floor where the electricity produced by the OTEC plant is directly connected to the grid ashore via a marine power cable (Grid Connected OTEC plants) -Open-ocean grazing OTEC plant-ships producing an energy carrier that is transported to designated ports (Energy Carrier OTEC plants) Costs are developed using the concept of levelized cost of energy established by DOE for use in comparing electricity costs from various generating systems. One area of system costs that had not been developed in detail prior to this analysis was the operations and sustainment (O&S) cost for both types of OTEC plants. Procurement costs, generally referred to as capital expense and O&S costs (operations and maintenance (O&M) costs plus overhaul and replacement costs), are assessed over the 30 year operational life of the plants and an annual annuity calculated to achieve a levelized cost (constant across entire plant life). Dividing this levelized cost by the average annual energy production results in a levelized cost of electricity, or LCOE, for the OTEC plants. Technical and production efficiency enhancements that could result in a lower value of the OTEC LCOE were also explored. The thermal OTEC resource for Oahu, Hawaii and projected build out plan were developed. The estimate of the OTEC resource and LCOE values for the planned OTEC systems enable this information to be displayed as energy supplied versus levelized cost of the supplied energy; this curve is referred to as an Energy Supply Curve. The Oahu Energy Supply Curve represents initial OTEC deployment starting in 2018 and demonstrates the

  14. [Cost analysis as a tool for assessing the efficacy of intensive care units].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maierhofer, T; Pfisterer, F; Bender, A; Küchenhoff, H; Moerer, O; Burchardi, H; Hartl, W H

    2017-06-16

    The German "Hospital Structure Act" intends to align the state hospital planning on quality criteria. Within this process cost-utility analyses (CUAs) shall be used to assess the efficacy of medical care. To be objective, CUAs of intensive care units (ICUs) require standardization (adjustment) of costs. The present study analyzed the extent to which treatment costs are related to patient-specific baseline variables (such as type and severity of the primary disease). From 2000-2004, a bottom-up procedure was used to quantify total costs on 14 ICUs in nine German university hospitals. Results were combined with demographic data, and data indicating type (ICD-10 codes) and severity (ICU scoring systems) of the primary disease at ICU admission. Various statistical models were tested to identify that which best described the associations between baseline variables and costs. In all, 3803 critically ill patients could be examined. The median of treatment costs per patient was 3199 € (IQR 1768-6659 €). No model allowed an acceptably precise adjustment of costs; the estimated mean absolute prognostic error was at least 3860 € (mean relative prognostic error 66%), when we tested an Extreme Gradient Boosting Model. Instruments which are currently available (cost adjustment based on patient-specific baseline variables) do not allow a standardization of costs, and an objective CUA of ICUs. Factors unknown at baseline may cause a large portion of treatment costs.

  15. Quality of life assessment in domestic dogs: An evidence-based rapid review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belshaw, Z; Asher, L; Harvey, N D; Dean, R S

    2015-11-01

    Assessment of quality of life (QoL) is an important, increasingly popular outcome measure in veterinary research and practice, particularly in dogs. In humans, QoL is commonly assessed by self-reporting and since this is not possible for animals, it is crucial that instruments designed to measure QoL are tested for reliability and validity. Using a systematic, replicable literature search strategy, the aim of this study was to find published, peer-reviewed instruments for QoL assessment in dogs and to assess the quality of these. CAB Abstracts and PubMed were searched in July 2013 using terms relevant to dogs, wellbeing and QoL. Inclusion and exclusion criteria were applied. When instruments were not published in full, authors were contacted to obtain them. Criteria were applied to assess the quality, validity and reliability of the 52 instruments obtained. Twenty-seven additional instruments used in peer-reviewed publications were not included because they had not been fully described in the publication or were not provided by authors upon request. Most of the instruments reviewed (48/52) were disease-specific rather than generic. Only four publications provided a definition of QoL or wellbeing. Only 11/52 instruments demonstrated evidence of assessing reliability or validity, and the quality of these instruments was variable. Many novel, unvalidated instruments have been generated and applied as clinical outcomes before it was known whether they measured QoL. This rapid review can be used to identify currently available and validated canine QoL instruments, and to assess the validity and quality of new or existing instruments. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  16. Scaling up success to improve health: Towards a rapid assessment guide for decision makers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason Paltzer

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Evidence-based health interventions exist and are effectively implemented throughout resource-limited settings. The literature regarding scale-up strategies and frameworks is growing. The purpose of this paper is to identify and systematically document the variation in scale-up strategies to develop a rapid assessment tool for decision-makers looking to identify the most appropriate strategy for their organizational and environmental contexts. Methods A list of scale-up strategies and frameworks were identified through an in-depth literature review and conversations with scale-up and quality improvement leaders. The literature search included a broad range of terms that might be used interchangeably with scale-up of best practices. Terms included: implementation research, knowledge translation, translational research, quality improvement research, health systems improvement, scale-up, best practices, improvement collaborative, and community based research. Based on this research, 18 strategies and frameworks were identified, and nine met our inclusion criteria for scale-up of health-related strategies. We interviewed the key contact for four of the nine strategies to obtain additional information regarding the strategy’s scale-up components, targets, underlying theories, evaluation efforts, facilitating factors, and barriers. A comparative analysis of common elements and strategy characteristics was completed by two of the authors on the nine selected strategies. Key strategy characteristics and common factors that facilitate or hinder the strategy’s success in scaling up health-related interventions were identified. Results Common features of scale-up strategies include: 1 the development of context-specific evidence; 2 collaborative partnerships; 3 iterative processes; and 4 shared decision-making. Facilitating factors include strong leadership, community engagement, communication, government collaboration, and a focus on

  17. Cost-effectiveness of a motivational intervention to reduce rapid repeated childbearing in high-risk adolescent mothers: a rebirth of economic and policy considerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnet, Beth; Rapp, Thomas; DeVoe, Margo; Mullins, C Daniel

    2010-04-01

    To determine the cost-effectiveness of an intervention that successfully reduced rapid repeated births within 2 years of an index birth to adolescent mothers. Randomized, controlled trial conducted from February 2003 to October 2007. Home-based intervention with participants recruited from 5 urban clinics that provide care to low-income African American communities. Two hundred thirty-five pregnant teenagers (n = 235) aged 18 years or younger who were at 24 or more weeks of gestation at recruitment were followed up for 27 months. Participants were randomly assigned to usual care (n = 68) or 1 of 2 home-based interventions conducted by community outreach workers: (1) computer-assisted motivational intervention (CAMI) conducted quarterly with additional visits (CAMI+ [n = 80]) or (2) CAMI only (n = 87), a single-component motivational intervention conducted quarterly. Additional births by 24 months post partum determined from birth certificates, total and weighted mean intervention costs, cost per participant, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios, defined as cost per prevented repeated birth. Relative to usual care, CAMI significantly reduced repeated births (adjusted odds ratio, 0.47; 95% confidence interval, 0.22-0.97). Mean intervention costs per adolescent were $2064, with incremental cost-effectiveness ratios per prevented repeated birth of $21 895 (unadjusted), $17 388 (adjusted), and $13 687 for a high-risk subgroup termed newly insured (eligible for but not enrolled in public insurance). The CAMI costs and cost-effectiveness compare favorably with other effective programs aimed at preventing repeated teenage births. Replication of these results in broader samples of adolescents would provide policy guidance for what works, for whom, and at what cost.

  18. Cost-effectiveness of quantitative ultrasound as a technique for screening of osteoporotic fracture risk: report on a health technology assessment conducted in 2001

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wasem, Jürgen

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available Aim: On behalf of the German Agency for Health Technology Assessment (DAHTA@DIMDI a rapid economic HTA was conducted. Aim of the HTA was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of quantitative ultrasound (QUS for screening of osteoporotic fracture risk. Study population was formed by postmenopausal women. QUS was compared to the dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA as the most frequently used method of measurement. Methods: According to the recommendations for rapid economic HTA a comprehensive literature search was conducted. Data of identified and relevant publications have been extracted in form of a qualitative and quantitative information synthesis. The authors calculated incremental cost-effectiveness ratios for different screening procedures: (1 one-step proceeding comparing QUS with DXA, (2 two-step proceeding starting with QUS followed by DXA in pathologic cases. Results: An additional case diagnosed by DXA in a one-step proceeding rises additional costs of about 1,000 EURO. A two-step proceeding with QUS is cost-effective as long as the costs of one QUS examination are lower than 31%-51% of the costs of one DXA examination. Discussion: All considered studies showed methodological limitations. None of them included long term effects like avoided bone fractures. Considering long-term effects probably would change the results. Due to the weakness of data no concluding judgement about the cost-effectiveness of QUS can be given.

  19. Sediment Processes on the Coral Reefs of Kahoolawe: A Rapid Field Assessment in 1993 (NODC Accession 0000883)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The nearshore coral ecosystems of Kahoolawe were rapidly assessed in 1993. Surveys were made of the coral coverage, fish communities, and sediment types from 19...

  20. Pacific Islands Coral Reef Ecosystems Division (CRED) Rapid Ecological Assessment (REA) algae species lists (NODC Accession 0010352)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Quadrats were sampled along consecutively placed transect lines as part of Rapid Ecological Assessments conducted at sites in American Pacific Islands: CRED REA...

  1. New approach for rapid assessment of trophic status of Yellow Sea and East China Sea using easy-to-measure parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Xianyu; Liu, Yanfang; Jian, Huimin; Su, Rongguo; Yao, Qingzhen; Shi, Xiaoyong

    2017-10-01

    To realize potential cost savings in coastal monitoring programs and provide timely advice for marine management, there is an urgent need for efficient evaluation tools based on easily measured variables for the rapid and timely assessment of estuarine and offshore eutrophication. In this study, using parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC), principal component analysis (PCA), and discriminant function analysis (DFA) with the trophic index (TRIX) for reference, we developed an approach for rapidly assessing the eutrophication status of coastal waters using easy-to-measure parameters, including chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM), fluorescence excitation-emission matrices, CDOM UV-Vis absorbance, and other water-quality parameters (turbidity, chlorophyll a, and dissolved oxygen). First, we decomposed CDOM excitation-emission matrices (EEMs) by PARAFAC to identify three components. Then, we applied PCA to simplify the complexity of the relationships between the water-quality parameters. Finally, we used the PCA score values as independent variables in DFA to develop a eutrophication assessment model. The developed model yielded classification accuracy rates of 97.1%, 80.5%, 90.3%, and 89.1% for good, moderate, and poor water qualities, and for the overall data sets, respectively. Our results suggest that these easy-to-measure parameters could be used to develop a simple approach for rapid in-situ assessment and monitoring of the eutrophication of estuarine and offshore areas.

  2. Impact of rapid methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus polymerase chain reaction testing on mortality and cost effectiveness in hospitalized patients with bacteraemia: a decision model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Jack; Paladino, Joseph A

    2010-01-01

    Patients hospitalized with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia have an unacceptably high mortality rate. Literature available to date has shown that timely selection of the most appropriate antibacterial may reduce mortality. One tool that may help with this selection is a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay that distinguishes methicillin (meticillin)-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) from methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) in less than 1 hour. To date, no information is available evaluating the impact of this PCR technique on clinical or economic outcomes. To evaluate the effect of a rapid PCR assay on mortality and economics compared with traditional empiric therapy, using a literature-derived model. A literature search for peer-reviewed European (EU) and US publications regarding treatment regimens, outcomes and costs was conducted. Information detailing the rates of infection, as well as the specificity and sensitivity of a rapid PCR assay (Xpert MRSA/SA Blood Culture PCR) were obtained from the peer-reviewed literature. Sensitivity analysis varied the prevalence rate of MRSA from 5% to 80%, while threshold analysis was applied to the cost of the PCR test. Hospital and testing resource consumption were valued with direct medical costs, adjusted to year 2009 values. Adjusted life-years were determined using US and WHO life tables. The cost-effectiveness ratio was defined as the cost per life-year saved. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) were calculated to determine the additional cost necessary to produce additional effectiveness. All analyses were performed using TreeAge Software (2008). The mean mortality rates were 23% for patients receiving empiric vancomycin subsequently switched to semi-synthetic penicillin (SSP) for MSSA, 36% for patients receiving empiric vancomycin treatment for MRSA, 59% for patients receiving empiric SSP subsequently switched to vancomycin for MRSA and 12% for patients receiving empiric SSP for MSSA. Furthermore, with an

  3. Rapid quality assessment of Radix Aconiti Preparata using direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhu Hongbin; Wang Chunyan; Qi Yao [Changchun Center of Mass Spectrometry and Chemical Biology Laboratory, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (China); University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China); Song Fengrui, E-mail: songfr@ciac.jl.cn [Changchun Center of Mass Spectrometry and Chemical Biology Laboratory, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (China); Liu Zhiqiang; Liu Shuying [Changchun Center of Mass Spectrometry and Chemical Biology Laboratory, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (China)

    2012-11-08

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer DART MS combined with PCA and HCA was used to rapidly identify markers of Radix Aconiti. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The DART MS behavior of six aconitine-type alkaloids was investigated. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Chemical markers were recognized between the qualified and unqualified samples. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer DART MS was shown to be an effective tool for quality control of Radix Aconiti Preparata. - Abstract: This study presents a novel and rapid method to identify chemical markers for the quality control of Radix Aconiti Preparata, a world widely used traditional herbal medicine. In the method, the samples with a fast extraction procedure were analyzed using direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (DART MS) combined with multivariate data analysis. At present, the quality assessment approach of Radix Aconiti Preparata was based on the two processing methods recorded in Chinese Pharmacopoeia for the purpose of reducing the toxicity of Radix Aconiti and ensuring its clinical therapeutic efficacy. In order to ensure the safety and effectivity in clinical use, the processing degree of Radix Aconiti should be well controlled and assessed. In the paper, hierarchical cluster analysis and principal component analysis were performed to evaluate the DART MS data of Radix Aconiti Preparata samples in different processing times. The results showed that the well processed Radix Aconiti Preparata, unqualified processed and the raw Radix Aconiti could be clustered reasonably corresponding to their constituents. The loading plot shows that the main chemical markers having the most influence on the discrimination amongst the qualified and unqualified samples were mainly some monoester diterpenoid aconitines and diester diterpenoid aconitines, i.e. benzoylmesaconine, hypaconitine, mesaconitine, neoline, benzoylhypaconine, benzoylaconine, fuziline, aconitine and 10-OH-mesaconitine. The established DART MS approach in

  4. Subgroup analyses in cost-effectiveness analyses to support health technology assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fletcher, Christine; Chuang-Stein, Christy; Paget, Marie-Ange; Reid, Carol; Hawkins, Neil

    2014-01-01

    'Success' in drug development is bringing to patients a new medicine that has an acceptable benefit-risk profile and that is also cost-effective. Cost-effectiveness means that the incremental clinical benefit is deemed worth paying for by a healthcare system, and it has an important role in enabling manufacturers to obtain new medicines to patients as soon as possible following regulatory approval. Subgroup analyses are increasingly being utilised by decision-makers in the determination of the cost-effectiveness of new medicines when making recommendations. This paper highlights the statistical considerations when using subgroup analyses to support cost-effectiveness for a health technology assessment. The key principles recommended for subgroup analyses supporting clinical effectiveness published by Paget et al. are evaluated with respect to subgroup analyses supporting cost-effectiveness. A health technology assessment case study is included to highlight the importance of subgroup analyses when incorporated into cost-effectiveness analyses. In summary, we recommend planning subgroup analyses for cost-effectiveness analyses early in the drug development process and adhering to good statistical principles when using subgroup analyses in this context. In particular, we consider it important to provide transparency in how subgroups are defined, be able to demonstrate the robustness of the subgroup results and be able to quantify the uncertainty in the subgroup analyses of cost-effectiveness. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  5. Rapid response for invasive waterweeds at the arctic invasion front: Assessment of collateral impacts from herbicide treatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sethi, Suresh; Carey, Michael P.; Morton, John M.; Guerron-Orejuela, Edgar; Decino, Robert; Willette, Mark; Boersma, James; Jablonski, Jillian; Anderson, Cheryl

    2017-01-01

    The remoteness of subarctic and arctic ecosystems no longer protects against invasive species introductions. Rather, the mix of urban hubs surrounded by undeveloped expanses creates a ratchet process whereby anthropogenic activity is sufficient to introduce and spread invaders, but for which the costs of monitoring and managing remote ecosystems is prohibitive. Elodea spp. is the first aquatic invasive plant to become established in Alaska and has potential for widespread deleterious ecological and economic impacts. A rapid eradication response with herbicides has been identified as a priority invasion control strategy. We conducted a multi-lake monitoring effort to assess collateral impacts from herbicide treatment for Elodea in high latitude systems. Variability in data was driven by seasonal dynamics and natural lake-to-lake differences typical of high latitude waterbodies, indicating lack of evidence for systematic impacts to water quality or plankton communities associated with herbicide treatment of Elodea. Impacts on native macrophytes were benign with the exception of some evidence for earlier onset of leaf senescence for lily pads(Nuphar spp.) in treated lakes. We observed a substantial increase in detected native flora richness after Elodea was eradicated from the most heavily infested lake, indicating potential for retention of native macrophyte communities if infestations are addressed quickly. While avoiding introductions through prevention may be the most desirable outcome, these applications indicated low risks of non-target impacts associated with herbicide treatment as a rapid response option for Elodea in high latitude systems.

  6. Development of a methodical approach to the cost-risks assessment of launch vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Protsch, Rainer W.

    1988-08-01

    A method for the assessment and documentation of cost risks in the development and operation of launch vehicles is presented. Special attention is paid to the complex logistics of modern launch vehicles, the possible reusability of launcher components, and the annual launch demand. The fundamentals of cost risk assessment for launch vehicles are summarized. The implementation of a developed stochastic simulation model on a personal computer using the FORTRAN 77 standard and the Monte Carlo technique facilitates the assessment as well as the graphical output. The possibilities of the method are demonstrated by the Space Transportation System. It turns out that the consideration of logistic relationships is of particular importance for the cost risk assessment of reusable launch vehicles.

  7. Cost-effectiveness analysis: adding value to assessment of animal health welfare and production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babo Martins, S; Rushton, J

    2014-12-01

    Cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) has been extensively used in economic assessments in fields related to animal health, namely in human health where it provides a decision-making framework for choices about the allocation of healthcare resources. Conversely, in animal health, cost-benefit analysis has been the preferred tool for economic analysis. In this paper, the use of CEA in related areas and the role of this technique in assessments of animal health, welfare and production are reviewed. Cost-effectiveness analysis can add further value to these assessments, particularly in programmes targeting animal welfare or animal diseases with an impact on human health, where outcomes are best valued in natural effects rather than in monetary units. Importantly, CEA can be performed during programme implementation stages to assess alternative courses of action in real time.

  8. Six rapid assessments of alcohol and other substance use in populations displaced by conflict

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adelekan Moruf

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Substance use among populations displaced by conflict is a neglected area of public health. Alcohol, khat, benzodiazepine, opiate, and other substance use have been documented among a range of displaced populations, with wide-reaching health and social impacts. Changing agendas in humanitarian response-including increased prominence of mental health and chronic illness-have so far failed to be translated into meaningful interventions for substance use. Methods Studies were conducted from 2006 to 2008 in six different settings of protracted displacement, three in Africa (Kenya, Liberia, northern Uganda and three in Asia (Iran, Pakistan, and Thailand. We used intervention-oriented qualitative Rapid Assessment and Response methods, adapted from two decades of experience among non-displaced populations. The main sources of data were individual and group interviews conducted with a culturally representative (non-probabilistic sample of community members and service providers. Results Widespread use of alcohol, particularly artisanally-produced alcohol, in Kenya, Liberia, Uganda, and Thailand, and opiates in Iran and Pakistan was believed by participants to be linked to a range of health, social and protection problems, including illness, injury (intentional and unintentional, gender-based violence, risky behaviour for HIV and other sexually transmitted infection and blood-borne virus transmission, as well as detrimental effects to household economy. Displacement experiences, including dispossession, livelihood restriction, hopelessness and uncertain future may make communities particularly vulnerable to substance use and its impact, and changing social norms and networks (including the surrounding population may result in changed - and potentially more harmful-patterns of use. Limited access to services, including health services, and exclusion from relevant host population programmes, may exacerbate the harmful consequences

  9. Cost-effectiveness analysis of antiviral treatment in the management of seasonal influenza A: point-of-care rapid test versus clinical judgment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nshimyumukiza, Léon; Douville, Xavier; Fournier, Diane; Duplantie, Julie; Daher, Rana K; Charlebois, Isabelle; Longtin, Jean; Papenburg, Jesse; Guay, Maryse; Boissinot, Maurice; Bergeron, Michel G; Boudreau, Denis; Gagné, Christian; Rousseau, François; Reinharz, Daniel

    2016-03-01

    A point-of-care rapid test (POCRT) may help early and targeted use of antiviral drugs for the management of influenza A infection. (i) To determine whether antiviral treatment based on a POCRT for influenza A is cost-effective and, (ii) to determine the thresholds of key test parameters (sensitivity, specificity and cost) at which a POCRT based-strategy appears to be cost effective. An hybrid « susceptible, infected, recovered (SIR) » compartmental transmission and Markov decision analytic model was used to simulate the cost-effectiveness of antiviral treatment based on a POCRT for influenza A in the social perspective. Data input parameters used were retrieved from peer-review published studies and government databases. The outcome considered was the incremental cost per life-year saved for one seasonal influenza season. In the base-case analysis, the antiviral treatment based on POCRT saves 2 lives/100,000 person-years and costs $7600 less than the empirical antiviral treatment based on clinical judgment alone, which demonstrates that the POCRT-based strategy is dominant. In one and two way-sensitivity analyses, results were sensitive to the POCRT accuracy and cost, to the vaccination coverage as well as to the prevalence of influenza A. In probabilistic sensitivity analyses, the POCRT strategy is cost-effective in 66% of cases, for a commonly accepted threshold of $50,000 per life-year saved. The influenza antiviral treatment based on POCRT could be cost-effective in specific conditions of performance, price and disease prevalence. © 2015 The Authors. Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Rapid in situ assessment of physiological activities in bacterial biofilms using fluorescent probes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, F. P.; McFeters, G. A.

    1994-01-01

    Two rapid in situ enumeration methods using fluorescent probes were used to assess the physiological activities of Klebsiella pneumoniae biofilms on stainless steel. Fluorescent dyes, 5-cyano-2,3-ditolyl tetrazolium chloride (CTC) and rhodamine 123 (Rh 123), were chosen to perform this study. CTC is a soluble redox indicator which can be reduced by respiring bacteria to fluorescent CTC-formazan crystals. Rh 123 is incorporated into bacteria with respect to cellular proton motive force. The intracellular accumulation of these fluorescent dyes can be determined using epifluorescence microscopy. The results obtained with these two fluorescent probes in situ were compared to the plate count (PC) and in situ direct viable count (DVC) methods. Viable cell densities within biofilms determined by the three in situ methods were comparable and always showed approximately 2-fold higher values than those obtained with the PC method. As an additional advantage, the results were observed after 2 h, which was shorter than the 4 h incubation time required for the DVC method and 24 h for colony formation. The results indicate that staining with CTC and Rh 123 provides rapid information regarding cell numbers and physiological activities of bacteria within biofilms.

  11. A rapid assessment survey of invasive species of macrobenthic invertebrates in Korean waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Chul; Kim, Sung-Tae; Hong, Jae-Sang; Choi, Keun-Hyung

    2017-09-01

    Introduced species are a growing and imminent threat to living marine resources in parts of the world's oceans. The present study is a rapid assessment survey of invasive macrobenthic invertebrate species in Korean ports. We surveyed over 40 ports around Korea during the period of May 2010 March 2013. Among the sampling sites were concrete walls, docks and associated floats, bumpers, tires, and ropes which might harbor non-native species. We found 15 invasive species as follows: one Sponge, two Bryozoans, three Mollusks, one Polychaete, four Cirripedes, and four Ascidians. Three morphologically similar species, namely X. atrata, M. galloprovincialis, and X. securis were further examined for distinctions in their morphology. Although they could be reasonably distinguished based on shell shapes, significant overlap was noted so that additional analysis may be required to correctly distinguish them. Although many of the introduced species have already spread to all three coastal areas, newly arrived invasive species showed a relatively restricted range, with a serpulid polychaete Ficopomatus enigmaticus and a mytilid bivalve Xenostrobus securis found only at a few sites on the East Coast. An exception is for Balanus perforatus, which has rapidly colonized the East coast of Korea following its introduction into the region. Successful management of invasive macrobenthic invertebrates should be established in order to contain the spread of these newly arrived species.

  12. Rapid health response, assessment, and surveillance after a tsunami--Thailand, 2004-2005.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-01-28

    On December 26, 2004, an earthquake triggered a devastating tsunami that caused an estimated 225,000 deaths in eight countries (India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives, Seychelles, Somalia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand) on two continents. In Thailand, six provinces (Krabi, Phang-Nga, Phuket, Ranong, Satun, and Trang) were impacted, including prominent international tourist destinations. The Thai Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) responded with rapid mobilization of local and nonlocal clinicians, public health practitioners, and medical supplies; assessment of health-care needs; identification of the dead, injured, and missing; and active surveillance of syndromic illness. The MOPH response was augmented by technical assistance from the Thai MOPH-U.S. CDC Collaboration (TUC) and the Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences (AFRIMS), with support from the office of the World Health Organization (WHO) representative to Thailand. This report summarizes these activities. The experiences in Thailand underscore the value of written and rehearsed disaster plans, capacity for rapid mobilization, local coordination of relief activities, and active public health surveillance.

  13. Rapid non-destructive assessment of pork edible quality by using VIS/NIR spectroscopic technique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Leilei; Peng, Yankun; Dhakal, Sagar; Song, Yulin; Zhao, Juan; Zhao, Songwei

    2013-05-01

    The objectives of this research were to develop a rapid non-destructive method to evaluate the edible quality of chilled pork. A total of 42 samples were packed in seal plastic bags and stored at 4°C for 1 to 21 days. Reflectance spectra were collected from visible/near-infrared spectroscopy system in the range of 400nm to 1100nm. Microbiological, physicochemical and organoleptic characteristics such as the total viable counts (TVC), total volatile basic-nitrogen (TVB-N), pH value and color parameters L* were determined to appraise pork edible quality. Savitzky-Golay (SG) based on five and eleven smoothing points, Multiple Scattering Correlation (MSC) and first derivative pre-processing methods were employed to eliminate the spectra noise. The support vector machines (SVM) and partial least square regression (PLSR) were applied to establish prediction models using the de-noised spectra. A linear correlation was developed between the VIS/NIR spectroscopy and parameters such as TVC, TVB-N, pH and color parameter L* indexes, which could gain prediction results with Rv of 0.931, 0.844, 0.805 and 0.852, respectively. The results demonstrated that VIS/NIR spectroscopy technique combined with SVM possesses a powerful assessment capability. It can provide a potential tool for detecting pork edible quality rapidly and non-destructively.

  14. Rapid in situ assessment for predicting soil quality using an algae-soaked disc seeding assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Sun-Hwa; Moon, Jongmin; Kim, Shin Woong; Kim, Hakyeong; Jeong, Seung-Woo; An, Youn-Joo

    2017-11-16

    The soil quality of remediated land is altered and this land consequently exerts unexpected biological effects on terrestrial organisms. Therefore, field evaluation of such land should be conducted using biological indicators. Algae are a promising new biological indicator since they are a food source for organisms in higher soil trophic levels and easily sampled from the soil. Field evaluation of soil characteristics is preferred to be testing in laboratory conditions because many biological effects cannot be duplicated during laboratory evaluations. Herein, we describe a convenient and rapid algae-soaked disc seeding assay for assessing soil quality in the field based on soil algae. The collection of algae is easy and rapid and the method predicts the short-term quality of contaminated, remediated, and amended farm and paddy soils. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay is yet to be extensively evaluated, and the method cannot be applied to loamy sand soil in in situ evaluations. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay is recommended for prediction of soil quality in in situ evaluations because it reflects all variations in the environment. The algae-soaked disc seeding assay will help to develop management strategies for in situ evaluation.

  15. Assessing the value of mepolizumab for severe eosinophilic asthma: a cost-effectiveness analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittington, Melanie D; McQueen, R Brett; Ollendorf, Daniel A; Tice, Jeffrey A; Chapman, Richard H; Pearson, Steven D; Campbell, Jonathan D

    2017-02-01

    Adding mepolizumab to standard treatment with inhaled corticosteroids and controller medications could decrease asthma exacerbations and use of long-term oral steroids in patients with severe disease and increased eosinophils; however, mepolizumab is costly and its cost effectiveness is unknown. To estimate the cost effectiveness of mepolizumab. A Markov model was used to determine the incremental cost per quality-adjusted life year (QALY) gained for mepolizumab plus standard of care (SoC) and for SoC alone. The population, adults with severe eosinophilic asthma, was modeled for a lifetime time horizon. A responder scenario analysis was conducted to determine the cost effectiveness for a cohort able to achieve and maintain asthma control. Over a lifetime treatment horizon, 23.96 exacerbations were averted per patient receiving mepolizumab plus SoC. Avoidance of exacerbations and decrease in long-term oral steroid use resulted in more than $18,000 in cost offsets among those receiving mepolizumab, but treatment costs increased by more than $600,000. Treatment with mepolizumab plus SoC vs SoC alone resulted in a cost-effectiveness estimate of $386,000 per QALY. To achieve cost effectiveness of approximately $150,000 per QALY, mepolizumab would require a more than 60% price discount. At current pricing, treating a responder cohort yielded cost-effectiveness estimates near $160,000 per QALY. The estimated cost effectiveness of mepolizumab exceeds value thresholds. Achieving these thresholds would require significant discounts from the current list price. Alternatively, treatment limited to responders improves the cost effectiveness toward, but remains still slightly above, these thresholds. Payers interested in improving the efficiency of health care resources should consider negotiations of the mepolizumab price and ways to predict and assess the response to mepolizumab. Copyright © 2016 American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All

  16. Costs of drug delivery for CHOP, COP/CVP, and fludarabine: an international assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herold, Michael; Hieke, Klaus

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this analysis was to assess the real-life direct costs of drug delivery for frequently used chemotherapeutic regimens in patients with relapsed low-grade non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). This was a retrospective analysis of direct costs of drug delivery (acquisition plus administration) of relapsed low-grade NHL in 424 patients in Canada, Germany, and Italy. Results were expressed as an average treatment cost per patient for six cycles of chemotherapy. Exchange rates used were $1 (Canada)= currency 0.672, 1 DM (Germany)= currency 0.511, and 1 Lit (Italy)= currency 0.000517. Direct costs of drug delivery were greater for inpatients receiving fludarabine (Canada currency 12,669; Italy currency 13,027) than for CHOP (Canada currency 7856; Germany currency 7218; Italy currency 4251) or COP/CVP (Canada currency 7360; Germany currency 8449). Treatment administration setting was a major cost driver with inpatient treatment up to 9-fold more expensive than the same regimen given to outpatients. Drug administration costs comprised the largest proportion of the total for each regimen in the inpatient setting (69-98%). Costs of drug delivery in the outpatient setting were 10% to 65% of those in the inpatient setting. Again, fludarabine was more expensive (Italy currency 8493; Canada currency 7269) than CHOP (Canada currency 4403; Germany currency 2150; Italy currency 1264) and COP/CVP (Canada currency 3009; Germany currency 867). Administration costs were 2.5- to 15-fold higher for inpatients compared to outpatients. Costs of drug administration are a major driver for total direct treatment costs in the treatment of relapsed low-grade NHL and are at least as important as drug acquisition costs. Drug administration practices, in terms of inpatient or outpatient treatment, are a major factor in determining overall direct costs. Therapeutic strategies, which offer shortened treatment duration and/or a simple mode of administration, are likely to be economically

  17. Life-Cycle Cost/Benefit Assessment of Expedite Departure Path (EDP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianzhong Jay; Chang, Paul; Datta, Koushik

    2005-01-01

    This report presents a life-cycle cost/benefit assessment (LCCBA) of Expedite Departure Path (EDP), an air traffic control Decision Support Tool (DST) currently under development at NASA. This assessment is an update of a previous study performed by bd Systems, Inc. (bd) during FY01, with the following revisions: The life-cycle cost assessment methodology developed by bd for the previous study was refined and calibrated using Free Flight Phase 1 (FFP1) cost information for Traffic Management Advisor (TMA, or TMA-SC in the FAA's terminology). Adjustments were also made to the site selection and deployment scheduling methodology to include airspace complexity as a factor. This technique was also applied to the benefit extrapolation methodology to better estimate potential benefits for other years, and at other sites. This study employed a new benefit estimating methodology because bd s previous single year potential benefit assessment of EDP used unrealistic assumptions that resulted in optimistic estimates. This methodology uses an air traffic simulation approach to reasonably predict the impacts from the implementation of EDP. The results of the costs and benefits analyses were then integrated into a life-cycle cost/benefit assessment.

  18. Rapid and Quantitative Assessment of Cancer Treatment Response Using In Vivo Bioluminescence Imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alnawaz Rehemtulla

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available Current assessment of orthotopic tumor models in animals utilizes survival as the primary therapeutic end point. In vivo bioluminescence imaging (BLI is a sensitive imaging modality that is rapid and accessible, and may comprise an ideal tool for evaluating antineoplastic therapies [1 ]. Using human tumor cell lines constitutively expressing luciferase, the kinetics of tumor growth and response to therapy have been assessed in intraperitoneal [2], subcutaneous, and intravascular [3] cancer models. However, use of this approach for evaluating orthotopic tumor models has not been demonstrated. In this report, the ability of BLI to noninvasively quantitate the growth and therapeuticinduced cell kill of orthotopic rat brain tumors derived from 9L gliosarcoma cells genetically engineered to stably express firefly luciferase (9LLuc was investigated. Intracerebral tumor burden was monitored over time by quantitation of photon emission and tumor volume using a cryogenically cooled CCD camera and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI, respectively. There was excellent correlation (r=0.91 between detected photons and tumor volume. A quantitative comparison of tumor cell kill determined from serial MRI volume measurements and BLI photon counts following 1,3-bis(2-chloroethyl-1-nitrosourea (BCNU treatment revealed that both imaging modalities yielded statistically similar cell kill values (P=.951. These results provide direct validation of BLI imaging as a powerful and quantitative tool for the assessment of antineoplastic therapies in living animals.

  19. Evaluation of ergonomic postures of dental professions by Rapid Entire Body Assessment (REBA, in Birjand, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nasl Saraji J.

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available Statement of Problem: Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs are major parts of the occupational diseases in workplaces. Protection from such diseases is dependent on assessment and improvement of job postures by using job analysis methods in ergonomics. Purpose: This study was aimed to evaluate ergonomic conditions in dental professions by rapid entire body assessment (REBA in Birjand city and also to assess the relation between MSDS in different parts of the body and work conditions. Materials and Methods: This study was a descriptive-analytical approach performed on 48 persons working at different professions by using REBA method. The prevalence of MSDs was obtained by using Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (NMQ. The data were analyzed by independent t-test, Chi-square and Fisher tests with P<0.05 as the limit of significance. Results: In this investigation, the prevalence of disorders for different parts of the body was as follows: 65% for neck, 60% for back, 38% for shoulders, and 31% for wrist. These disorders were higher in women than men except for the back. There were significant correlation between disorders of femur and foreleg with work history, ankle and sole with body mass index (BMI, and MSDs with work conditions (P<0.05. Conclusion: It is concluded that the work conditions and postures need to be improved. In addition the level of dental professional education regarding biomechanical hazardous effects as well as correct work conditions and postures should be increased.

  20. Ecosytem Services: A Rapid Assessment Method Tested at 35 Sites of the LTER-Europe Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dick Jan

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The identification of parameters to monitor the ecosystem services delivered at a site is fundamental to the concept’s adoption as a useful policy instrument at local, national and international scales. In this paper we (i describe the process of developing a rapid comprehensive ecosystem service assessment methodology and (ii test the applicability of the protocol at 35 long-term research (LTER sites across 14 countries in the LTER-Europe network (www.lter-europe.net including marine, urban, agricultural, forest, desert and conservation sites. An assessment of probability of occurrence with estimated confidence score using 83 ecosystem service parameters was tested. The parameters were either specific services like food production or proxies such as human activities which were considered surrogates for cultural diversity and economic activity. This initial test of the ecosystem service parameter list revealed that the parameters tested were relatively easy to score by site managers with a high level of certainty (92% scored as either occurring or not occurring at the site with certainty of over 90%. Based on this assessment, we concluded that (i this approach to operationalise the concept of ecosystem services is practical and applicable by many sectors of civil society as a first screen of the ecosystem services present at a site, (ii this study has direct relevance to land management and policy decision makers as a transparent vehicle to focus testing scenarios and target data gathering, but (iii further work beyond the scale investigated here is required to ensure global applicability.

  1. Rapid health assessments of evacuation centres in areas affected by Typhoon Haiyan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth Alma Ramos

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Typhoon Haiyan caused thousands of deaths and catastrophic destruction, leaving many homeless in Region 8 of the Philippines. A team from the Philippine Field Epidemiology Training Program conducted a rapid health assessment survey of evacuation centres severely affected by Haiyan. Methods: A descriptive study was conducted whereby a convenience sample of evacuation centres were assessed on the number of toilets per evacuee, sanitation, drinking-water, food supply source and medical services. Results: Of the 20 evacuation centres assessed, none had a designated manager. Most were located in schools (70% with the estimated number of evacuees ranging from 15 to 5000 per centre. Only four (20% met the World Health Organization standard for number of toilets per evacuee; none of the large evacuation centres had even half the recommended number of toilets. All of the evacuation centres had available drinking-water. None of the evacuation centres had garbage collection, vector control activities or standby medical teams. Fourteen (70% evacuation centres had onsite vaccination activities for measles, tetanus and polio virus. Many evacuation centres were overcrowded. Conclusion: Evacuation centres are needed in almost every disaster. They should be safely located and equipped with the required amenities. In disaster-prone areas such as the Philippines, schools and community centres should not be designated as evacuation centres unless they are equipped with adequate sanitation services.

  2. Application of a voltammetric electronic tongue and near infrared spectroscopy for a rapid umami taste assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagnasco, Lucia; Cosulich, M Elisabetta; Speranza, Giovanna; Medini, Luca; Oliveri, Paolo; Lanteri, Silvia

    2014-08-15

    The relationships between sensory attribute and analytical measurements, performed by electronic tongue (ET) and near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS), were investigated in order to develop a rapid method for the assessment of umami taste. Commercially available umami products and some aminoacids were submitted to sensory analysis. Results were analysed in comparison with the outcomes of analytical measurements. Multivariate exploratory analysis was performed by principal component analysis (PCA). Calibration models for prediction of the umami taste on the basis of ET and NIR signals were obtained using partial least squares (PLS) regression. Different approaches for merging data from the two different analytical instruments were considered. Both of the techniques demonstrated to provide information related with umami taste. In particular, ET signals showed the higher correlation with umami attribute. Data fusion was found to be slightly beneficial - not so significantly as to justify the coupled use of the two analytical techniques. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. A participatory action research pilot study of urban health disparities using rapid assessment response and evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, David Richard; Hernández, Agueda; Saint-Jean, Gilbert; Evans, Siân; Tafari, Ida; Brewster, Luther G; Celestin, Michel J; Gómez-Estefan, Carlos; Regalado, Fernando; Akal, Siri; Nierenberg, Barry; Kauschinger, Elaine D; Schwartz, Robert; Page, J Bryan

    2008-01-01

    Healthy People 2010 made it a priority to eliminate health disparities. We used a rapid assessment response and evaluation (RARE) to launch a program of participatory action research focused on health disparities in an urban, disadvantaged Black community serviced by a major south Florida health center. We formed partnerships with community members, identified local health disparities, and guided interventions targeting health disparities. We describe the RARE structure used to triangulate data sources and guide intervention plans as well as findings and conclusions drawn from scientific literature and epidemiological, historic, planning, clinical, and ethnographic data. Disenfranchisement and socioeconomic deprivation emerged as the principal determinants of local health disparities and the most appropriate targets for intervention.

  4. RAPID EXPOSURE ASSESSMENT OF NATIONWIDE RIVER FLOOD FOR DISASTER RISK REDUCTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Kwak

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available considerably increased. For flood disaster risk reduction, it is important to identify and characterize flood area, locations (particularly lowland along rivers, and durations. For this purpose, flood mapping and monitoring are an imperative process and the fundamental part of risk management as well as emergency response. Our ultimate goal is to detect flood inundation areas over a nationwide scale despite limitations of optical and multispectral images, and to estimate flood risk in terms of affected people. We propose a methodological possibility to be used as a standard approach for nationwide rapid flood exposure assessment with the use of the multi-temporal Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS, a big contributor to progress in near-real-time flood mapping. The preliminary results in Bangladesh show that a propensity of flood risk change strongly depends on the temporal and spatial dynamics of exposure such as distributed population.

  5. Professional Development Needs of Novice Nursing Clinical Teachers: A Rapid Evidence Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jetha, Farah; Boschma, Geertje; Clauson, Marion

    2016-02-26

    The current nursing profession is challenged with a decreasing supply of competent clinical teachers due to several factors consequently impacting the quality of nursing education. To meet this demand, academic nursing programs are resorting to hiring expert nurses who may have little or no teaching experience. They need support during their transition from practice to teaching. Using the systematic approach of a Rapid Evidence Assessment (REA), scholarly literature was reviewed to identify existing professional development needs for novice clinical teachers as well as supportive strategies to aid the transition of experienced nurses into teaching practice. The REA included 29 relevant studies. Findings revealed three main professional development needs for novice clinical teachers and key supportive strategies. Based on these findings recommendations for best practices to support and prepare novice clinical teachers are presented.

  6. Additional Interventions to Enhance the Effectiveness of Individual Placement and Support: A Rapid Evidence Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi Boycott

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Topic. Additional interventions used to enhance the effectiveness of individual placement and support (IPS. Aim. To establish whether additional interventions improve the vocational outcomes of IPS alone for people with severe mental illness. Method. A rapid evidence assessment of the literature was conducted for studies where behavioural or psychological interventions have been used to supplement standard IPS. Published and unpublished empirical studies of IPS with additional interventions were considered for inclusion. Conclusions. Six published studies were found which compared IPS alone to IPS plus a supplementary intervention. Of these, three used skills training and three used cognitive remediation. The contribution of each discrete intervention is difficult to establish. Some evidence suggests that work-related social skills and cognitive training are effective adjuncts, but this is an area where large RCTs are required to yield conclusive evidence.

  7. Rapid assessment of antimicrobial resistance prevalence using a Lot Quality Assurance sampling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leth, Frank; den Heijer, Casper; Beerepoot, Mariëlle; Stobberingh, Ellen; Geerlings, Suzanne; Schultsz, Constance

    2017-04-01

    Increasing antimicrobial resistance (AMR) requires rapid surveillance tools, such as Lot Quality Assurance Sampling (LQAS). LQAS classifies AMR as high or low based on set parameters. We compared classifications with the underlying true AMR prevalence using data on 1335 Escherichia coli isolates from surveys of community-acquired urinary tract infection in women, by assessing operating curves, sensitivity and specificity. Sensitivity and specificity of any set of LQAS parameters was above 99% and between 79 and 90%, respectively. Operating curves showed high concordance of the LQAS classification with true AMR prevalence estimates. LQAS-based AMR surveillance is a feasible approach that provides timely and locally relevant estimates, and the necessary information to formulate and evaluate guidelines for empirical treatment.

  8. [Development and scientific rationale for a universal index for rapid assessment of readability].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teksheva, L M

    2007-01-01

    The hygienic regulations of academic books, including teachware, for children and adolescents necessitate the performance of special studies to assess their readability by the unified procedure that would suggest a visual response while reading. This study has developed and warranted a universal readability index by the velocity of reading. There are significant regression correlations between the velocity of reading as the readability index and the degree of tiredness, detected by various visual functions. The parameters of accommodation and adaptive properties of the eye are most sensitive to visual load on reading. Reading velocity as an indicator of readability of illogical texts may be used as a rapid method under laboratory and natural conditions to determine the action of various textual loads on the visual system.

  9. Pesticide Environmental Accounting: a method for assessing the external costs of individual pesticide applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leach, A W; Mumford, J D

    2008-01-01

    The Pesticide Environmental Accounting (PEA) tool provides a monetary estimate of environmental and health impacts per hectare-application for any pesticide. The model combines the Environmental Impact Quotient method and a methodology for absolute estimates of external pesticide costs in UK, USA and Germany. For many countries resources are not available for intensive assessments of external pesticide costs. The model converts external costs of a pesticide in the UK, USA and Germany to Mediterranean countries. Economic and policy applications include estimating impacts of pesticide reduction policies or benefits from technologies replacing pesticides, such as sterile insect technique. The system integrates disparate data and approaches into a single logical method. The assumptions in the system provide transparency and consistency but at the cost of some specificity and precision, a reasonable trade-off for a method that provides both comparative estimates of pesticide impacts and area-based assessments of absolute impacts.

  10. Reliable and Rapid Robotic Assessment of Wrist Proprioception Using a Gauge Position Matching Paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderknecht, Mike D.; Popp, Werner L.; Lambercy, Olivier; Gassert, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Quantitative assessments of position sense are essential for the investigation of proprioception, as well as for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment planning for patients with somatosensory deficits. Despite the development and use of various paradigms and robotic tools, their clinimetric properties are often poorly evaluated and reported. A proper evaluation of the latter is essential to compare results between different studies and to identify the influence of possible confounds on outcome measures. The aim of the present study was to perform a comprehensive evaluation of a rapid robotic assessment of wrist proprioception using a passive gauge position matching task. Thirty-two healthy subjects undertook six test-retests of proprioception of the right wrist on two different days. The constant error (CE) was 0.87°, the absolute error (AE) was 5.87°, the variable error (VE) was 4.59° and the total variability (E) was 6.83° in average for the angles presented in the range from 10° to 30°. The intraclass correlation analysis provided an excellent reliability for CE (0.75), good reliability for AE (0.68) and E (0.68), and fair reliability for VE (0.54). Tripling the assessment length had negligible effects on the reliabilities. Additional analysis revealed significant trends of larger overestimation (constant errors), as well as larger absolute and variable errors with increased flexion angles. No proprioceptive learning occurred, despite increased familiarity with the task, which was reflected in significantly decreased assessment duration by 30%. In conclusion, the proposed automated assessment can provide sensitive and reliable information on proprioceptive function of the wrist with an administration time of around 2.5 min, demonstrating the potential for its application in research or clinical settings. Moreover, this study highlights the importance of reporting the complete set of errors (CE, AE, VE, and E) in a matching experiment for the identification of

  11. A New Rapid In Vitro Assay for Assessing Reactivity of Acyl Glucuronides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Sheng; Jones, Russell; Lu, Wenzhe; Schadt, Simone; Ottaviani, Giorgio

    2015-11-01

    Idiosyncratic drug toxicity is a major challenge for the pharmaceutical industry since complex and multifactorial steps are involved, the dose-dependency is unclear, and its occurrence is not reliably predictable. Whereas the exact mechanisms leading to idiosyncratic toxicity remain elusive in many cases, there are often hints at the involvement of reactive metabolites, such as acyl glucuronides formed by conjugation of carboxylic acids with glucuronic acid. Because the patient-related susceptibilities leading to idiosyncratic toxicity are not sufficiently understood, the best option for the pharmaceutical industry is to minimize drug-related risk factors such as potential acyl glucuronide formation. Here, we describe a rapid in vitro assay for the assessment of the reactivity of acyl glucuronides, on the basis of acyl glucuronide migration, that can support the selection of low-risk drug candidates in the drug discovery phase. Twenty marketed compounds with a wide range of half-lives were tested, their acyl glucuronide migration rates were determined and compared with the half-lives of the respective acyl glucuronides. Ranking of acyl glucuronide stability using this method compared well with the results from existing methodologies. With this method, migration rates >20% would indicate higher risk of reactivity. This simpler approach using the acyl glucuronide migration rate is not dependent on authentic standards, therefore eliminating the requirement for either lengthy chemical synthesis or in vitro biosynthesis and purification of the 1-O-β-glucuronide. This methodology provides a rapid in vitro assay to assess acyl glucuronide stability and reactivity that is well suited for use early in the drug discovery phase. Copyright © 2015 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

  12. Rapid Assessment of Health Services in Punjab using a Mixed Method Approach

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    Rajesh Kumar

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: The out-of-pocket expenditure is quite high in Punjab. Hence, a rapid review of health facilities was undertaken to suggest remedial measures. Methods: Mixed method research approach was used to identify strengths and weaknesses of the health services in Punjab. All health institutions were included in the assessment from the three purposively sampled districts – one from each of the three regions of Punjab. Tools were developed to collect data from record review, observations, and in-depth interviews. Six building blocks framework proposed by the World Health Organization was used for data collection and analyses. Results: In general physical infrastructure, especially the buildings were found to be reasonably constructed at most of the healthcare facilities. However, the maintenance was not regular. The vacancies for general doctors, specialist doctors, nurses, and paramedics were 26%, 38%, 31% and 12% respectively. Supply of drugs was irregular and inadequate. A large proportion (45% of ‘user charges’ were spent on purchase of drugs and other consumables. Most registers were found to be updated, and reports were transmitted to higher levels usually on time. However, institutionalized system of monitoring and supervision was lacking. Govt. hospitals were providing in-patient care to about 35.5% of those who were estimated to need hospitalization. State had allocated about Rs. 1200 crores to health (0.46% of GDP, thus, spending only Rs. 433 per capita per year. Conclusions: Despite constraints, the government health service is catering to the needs of a large section of the population. Rapid health system assessment at periodic intervals using a mixed method approach can supplement routine monitoring of the health system.

  13. Myths and misconceptions about cervical cancer among Zambian women: rapid assessment by peer educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chirwa, Susan; Mwanahamuntu, Mulindi; Kapambwe, Sharon; Mkumba, Gracilia; Stringer, Jeff; Sahasrabuddhe, Vikrant; Pfaendler, Krista

    2014-01-01

    Objective To make a rapid assessment of the common myths and misconceptions surrounding the causes of cervical cancer and lack of screening among unscreened low-income Zambian women. Methods We initiated a door-to-door community-based initiative, led by peer educators, to inform unscreened women about the existence of a new see-and-treat cervical cancer prevention program. During home visits peer educators posed the following two questions to women: 1. What do you think causes cervical cancer? 2. Why haven’t you been screened for cervical cancer? The most frequent types of responses gathered in this exercise were analyzed thematically. Results Peer educators contacted over 1100 unscreened women over a period of two months. Their median age was 33 years, a large majority (58%) were not educated beyond primary school, over two-thirds (71%) did not have monthly incomes over 500,000 Zambian Kwacha (US$100) per month, and just over half (51%) were married and cohabiting with their spouses. Approximately 75% of the women engaged in discussions had heard of cervical cancer and had heard of the new cervical cancer prevention program in the local clinic. The responses of unscreened low-income Zambian women to questions posed by peer educators in urban Lusaka reflect the variety of prevalent ‘folk’ myths and misconceptions surrounding cervical cancer and its prevention methods. Conclusion The information in our rapid assessment can serve as a basis for developing future educational and intervention campaigns for improving uptake of cervical cancer prevention services in Zambia. It also speaks to the necessity of ensuring that programs addressing women’s reproductive health take into account societal inputs at the time they are being developed and implemented. Taking a community-based participatory approach to program development and implementation will help ensure sustainability and impact. PMID:20595342

  14. Evaluation of thermally-modified calcium-rich attapulgite as a low-cost substrate for rapid phosphorus removal in constructed wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Hongbin; Yan, Xiaowei; Gu, Xiaohong

    2017-05-15

    The cost-effective and geographically available substrates are vital for the design of constructed wetlands (CWs), especially the saturated subsurface flow CWs, which are deemed as an efficient way to remove the inlet-lake phosphorus concentrations. In this study, phosphorus removal of thermally-treated calcium-rich attapulgite (TCAP) with varied particle sizes (0.2-0.5 mm, 0.5-1 mm and 1-2 mm) was assessed using batch and long-term column experiments to evaluate its feasibility as a CWs substrate. The phosphorus-bound mechanism in TCAP was identified in various initial phosphorus concentrations. Batch studies indicated that more than 95% of P can be rapidly (hydraulic retention time (HRT) exerts great influence on P removal performance and longer HRTs favor the dissolution of CaO in TCAP, consequently increasing the P removal rate. In a 150-day P removal experiment, TCAP removed an average of 93.1%-95.4% of the influent P with a HRT of eight hours. Both the batch and chemical extraction of the P fraction of TCAP showed that the P removed by TCAP was mainly through formation of Ca phosphate precipitation. However, the species of Ca-P precipitation formed might be varied in different phosphorus concentrations. All results indicated that TCAP can be a suitable substrate when used in CWs, and field experiments should be carried out to test its real P removal performance in the future. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Assessing benefits and costs of commercial banana production in the Philippines

    OpenAIRE

    Calderon, R.; Rola, Agnes C.

    2003-01-01

    The Philippine banana industry is currently one of the top agricultural export earners. The increasing demand worldwide has resulted in greater expansion of area planted to banana, including those in environmentally critical places. Current high chemical input technologies used in banana production have been documented to have significant environmental and public health costs. In this paper, we assess the social costs and private benefits of banana production by commercial growers. We used pr...

  16. Imaging Spectroscopy Techniques for Rapid Assessment of Geologic and Cryospheric Science Data from future Satellite Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvin, W. M.; Hill, R.

    2016-12-01

    Several efforts are currently underway to develop and launch the next generation of imaging spectrometer systems on satellite platforms for a wide range of Earth Observation goals. Systems that include the reflected solar wavelength range up to 2.5 μm will be capable of detailed mapping of the composition of the Earth's surface. Sensors under development include EnMAP, HISUI, PRISMA, HERO, and HyspIRI. These systems are expected to be able to provide global data for insights and constraints on fundamental geological processes, natural and anthropogenic hazards, water, energy and mineral resource assessments. Coupled with the development of these sensors is the challenge of bringing a multi-channel user community (from Landsat, MODIS, and ASTER) into the rich science return available from imaging spectrometer systems. Most data end users will never be spectroscopy experts so that making the derived science products accessible to a wide user community is imperative. Simple band parameterizations have been developed for the CRISM instrument at Mars, including mafic and alteration minerals, frost and volatile ice indices. These products enhance and augment the use of that data set by broader group of scientists. Summary products for terrestrial geologic and water resource applications would help build a wider user base for future satellite systems, and rapidly key spectral experts to important regions for detailed spectral mapping. Summary products take advantage of imaging spectroscopy's narrow spectral channels with band depth calculations in addition to band ratios that are commonly used by multi-channel systems (e.g. NDVI, NDWI, NDSI). We are testing summary products for Earth geologic and snow scenes over California using AVIRIS data at 18m/pixel. This has resulted in several algorithms for rapid mineral discrimination and mapping and data collects over the melting Sierra snowpack in spring 2016 are expected to generate algorithms for snow grain size and surface

  17. Rapid assessment of malaria transmission using age-specific sero-conversion rates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laveta Stewart

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Malaria transmission intensity is a crucial determinant of malarial disease burden and its measurement can help to define health priorities. Rapid, local estimates of transmission are required to focus resources better but current entomological and parasitological methods for estimating transmission intensity are limited in this respect. An alternative is determination of antimalarial antibody age-specific sero-prevalence to estimate sero-conversion rates (SCR, which have been shown to correlate with transmission intensity. This study evaluated SCR generated from samples collected from health facility attendees as a tool for a rapid assessment of malaria transmission intensity.The study was conducted in north east Tanzania. Antibodies to Plasmodium falciparum merozoite antigens MSP-1(19 and AMA-1 were measured by indirect ELISA. Age-specific antibody prevalence was analysed using a catalytic conversion model based on maximum likelihood to generate SCR. A pilot study, conducted near Moshi, found SCRs for AMA-1 were highly comparable between samples collected from individuals in a conventional cross-sectional survey and those collected from attendees at a local health facility. For the main study, 3885 individuals attending village health facilities in Korogwe and Same districts were recruited. Both malaria parasite prevalence and sero-positivity were higher in Korogwe than in Same. MSP-1(19 and AMA-1 SCR rates for Korogwe villages ranged from 0.03 to 0.06 and 0.07 to 0.21 respectively. In Same district there was evidence of a recent reduction in transmission, with SCR among those born since 1998 [MSP-1(19 0.002 to 0.008 and AMA-1 0.005 to 0.014 ] being 5 to 10 fold lower than among individuals born prior to 1998 [MSP-1(19 0.02 to 0.04 and AMA-1 0.04 to 0.13]. Current health facility specific estimates of SCR showed good correlations with malaria incidence rates in infants in a contemporaneous clinical trial (MSP-1(19 r(2 = 0.78, p<0.01 & AMA-1 r

  18. An effort to assess the relation between productivity loss costs and presenteeism at work.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vänni, Kimmo; Neupane, Subas; Nygård, Clas-Håkan

    2017-03-01

    This study assesses potential presenteeism costs and the association of these with a company's business figures. We conducted the questionnaire surveys in alternate years between 2003 and 2007 and linked them to sickness absence register data. Perceived work ability levels were assessed and converted into presenteeism days using the Presenteeism Scale tool. Sickness absence and presenteeism days were converted into monetary figures using median monthly salary information. The share of presenteeism costs was constant at about 1% of annual turnover and about 3.7% of personnel costs. The lowest annual presenteeism cost per employee was EUR 986 and the highest was EUR 1302. The lowest number of presenteeism days per employee in a year was 8.7 days and the highest number was 10.4 days. Estimated losses to a company due to sickness absences and presenteeism ranged from EUR 4.6 million to EUR 5.6 million annually. The potential presenteeism costs to the company and to Finnish society were vast. Presenteeism is a costly problem but more research is needed to reveal the connections between presenteeism and a company's turnover, personnel costs and profit.

  19. A Method to Assess the Potential Effects of Air Pollution Mitigation on Healthcare Costs

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    Bjørn Sætterstrøm

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. The aim of this study was to develop a method to assess the potential effects of air pollution mitigation on healthcare costs and to apply this method to assess the potential savings related to a reduction in fine particle matter in Denmark. Methods. The effects of air pollution on health were used to identify “exposed” individuals (i.e., cases. Coronary heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and lung cancer were considered to be associated with air pollution. We used propensity score matching, two-part estimation, and Lin’s method to estimate healthcare costs. Subsequently, we multiplied the number of saved cases due to mitigation with the healthcare costs to arrive to an expression for healthcare cost savings. Results. The potential cost saving in the healthcare system arising from a modelled reduction in air pollution was estimated at €0.1–2.6 million per 100,000 inhabitants for the four diseases. Conclusion. We have illustrated an application of a method to assess the potential changes in healthcare costs due to a reduction in air pollution. The method relies on a large volume of administrative data and combines a number of established methods for epidemiological analysis.

  20. Rapid psychological assessment of depression and its relationship with physical health among urban elderly

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pavithra Cheluvaraj

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background Old age is associated with increased occurrence of a wide array of Psychological impairments or losses, which might contribute to physical disabilities. As Depression has been identified as the most common aberration its rapid assessment would be able to identify the quality of individual and family life of the elderly. Aims To assess psychological health status with respect to depression among geriatric urban community, and the relationship of depression with health perception and physical health status has been explored. Methods A cross-sectional total geriatric population survey consisting of 254 elderly has been carried out at urban field practice area. A standard geriatric depression scale (Short form has been utilized to assess psychological status. Detailed physical examination and investigations with special reference to Diabetes, Hypertension and Visual defects was carried out. Data was analyzed to find out the relationship of various socio-demographic factors, physical morbidities with depression. Results Out of 254 elderly examined, 32 per cent females and 23 per cent males were found to be suffering from depressive disorders. When assessed for individual health status perception, 25 per cent felt to have good health. Out of 190 geriatric subjects perceiving fair to bad health, 110 were found to be suffering from depression (p<0.001. Depression was also found to be associated with history of hospital admission in the previous year (p<0.05, low vision (p<0.05, diabetes (p<0.01 and hypertension (p<0.01. Conclusion Depression among geriatric age group is associated with physical illness and perception of health.

  1. Cost-effectiveness of the polypill versus risk assessment for prevention of cardiovascular disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferket, Bart S; Hunink, M G Myriam; Khanji, Mohammed; Agarwal, Isha; Fleischmann, Kirsten E; Petersen, Steffen E

    2017-04-01

    There is an international trend towards recommending medication to prevent cardiovascular disease (CVD) in individuals at increasingly lower cardiovascular risk. We assessed the cost-effectiveness of a population approach with a polypill including a statin (simvastatin 20 mg) and three antihypertensive agents (amlodipine 2.5 mg, losartan 25 mg and hydrochlorothiazide 12.5 mg) and periodic risk assessment with different risk thresholds. We developed a microsimulation model for lifetime predictions of CVD events, diabetes, and death in 259 146 asymptomatic UK Biobank participants aged 40-69 years. We assessed incremental costs and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) for polypill scenarios with the same combination of agents and doses but differing for starting age, and periodic risk assessment with 10-year CVD risk thresholds of 10% and 20%. Restrictive risk assessment, in which statins and antihypertensives were prescribed when risk exceeded 20%, was the optimal strategy gaining 123 QALYs (95% credible interval (CI) -173 to 387) per 10 000 individuals at an extra cost of £1.45 million (95% CI 0.89 to 1.94) as compared with current practice. Although less restrictive risk assessment and polypill scenarios prevented more CVD events and attained larger survival gains, these benefits were offset by the additional costs and disutility of daily medication use. Lowering the risk threshold for prescription of statins to 10% was economically unattractive, costing £40 000 per QALY gained. Starting the polypill from age 60 onwards became the most cost-effective scenario when annual drug prices were reduced below £240. All polypill scenarios would save costs at prices below £50. Periodic risk assessment using lower risk thresholds is unlikely to be cost-effective. The polypill would become cost-effective if drug prices were reduced. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to

  2. Harvesting forest biomass for energy in Minnesota: An assessment of guidelines, costs and logistics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saleh, Dalia El Sayed Abbas Mohamed

    The emerging market for renewable energy in Minnesota has generated a growing interest in utilizing more forest biomass for energy. However, this growing interest is paralleled with limited knowledge of the environmental impacts and cost effectiveness of utilizing this resource. To address environmental and economic viability concerns, this dissertation has addressed three areas related to biomass harvest: First, existing biomass harvesting guidelines and sustainability considerations are examined. Second, the potential contribution of biomass energy production to reduce the costs of hazardous fuel reduction treatments in these trials is assessed. Third, the logistics of biomass production trials are analyzed. Findings show that: (1) Existing forest related guidelines are not sufficient to allow large-scale production of biomass energy from forest residue sustainably. Biomass energy guidelines need to be based on scientific assessments of how repeated and large scale biomass production is going to affect soil, water and habitat values, in an integrated and individual manner over time. Furthermore, such guidelines would need to recommend production logistics (planning, implementation, and coordination of operations) necessary for a potential supply with the least site and environmental impacts. (2) The costs of biomass production trials were assessed and compared with conventional treatment costs. In these trials, conventional mechanical treatment costs were lower than biomass energy production costs less income from biomass sale. However, a sensitivity analysis indicated that costs reductions are possible under certain site, prescriptions and distance conditions. (3) Semi-structured interviews with forest machine operators indicate that existing fuel reduction prescriptions need to be more realistic in making recommendations that can overcome operational barriers (technical and physical) and planning and coordination concerns (guidelines and communications

  3. Rapid assessment of quality of deer antler slices by using an electronic nose coupled with chemometric analysis

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    Guojie Xu

    Full Text Available Deer antler is a precious animal-sourced traditional Chinese medicine. We aimed to rapidly assess the quality of deer antler slices by electronic nose so that we can ensure medical safety. In this study, response intensity of the electronic nose was favorably optimized, and samples were well assessed by using an electronic nose based on LDA model. The results obtained herein suggested that electronic nose could be an effective method to rapidly assess the quality of deer antler slices, and could also be an important tool for categorization of complex aroma mixtures for the control of quality of drugs or food.

  4. Rapid Assessment of Earthquakes with Radar and Optical Geodetic Imaging and Finite Fault Models (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fielding, E. J.; Sladen, A.; Simons, M.; Rosen, P. A.; Yun, S.; Li, Z.; Avouac, J.; Leprince, S.

    2010-12-01

    Earthquake responders need to know where the earthquake has caused damage and what is the likely intensity of damage. The earliest information comes from global and regional seismic networks, which provide the magnitude and locations of the main earthquake hypocenter and moment tensor centroid and also the locations of aftershocks. Location accuracy depends on the availability of seismic data close to the earthquake source. Finite fault models of the earthquake slip can be derived from analysis of seismic waveforms alone, but the results can have large errors in the location of the fault ruptures and spatial distribution of slip, which are critical for estimating the distribution of shaking and damage. Geodetic measurements of ground displacements with GPS, LiDAR, or radar and optical imagery provide key spatial constraints on the location of the fault ruptures and distribution of slip. Here we describe the analysis of interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) and sub-pixel correlation (or pixel offset tracking) of radar and optical imagery to measure ground coseismic displacements for recent large earthquakes, and lessons learned for rapid assessment of future events. These geodetic imaging techniques have been applied to the 2010 Leogane, Haiti; 2010 Maule, Chile; 2010 Baja California, Mexico; 2008 Wenchuan, China; 2007 Tocopilla, Chile; 2007 Pisco, Peru; 2005 Kashmir; and 2003 Bam, Iran earthquakes, using data from ESA Envisat ASAR, JAXA ALOS PALSAR, NASA Terra ASTER and CNES SPOT5 satellite instruments and the NASA/JPL UAVSAR airborne system. For these events, the geodetic data provided unique information on the location of the fault or faults that ruptured and the distribution of slip that was not available from the seismic data and allowed the creation of accurate finite fault source models. In many of these cases, the fault ruptures were on previously unknown faults or faults not believed to be at high risk of earthquakes, so the area and degree of

  5. An assessment of various blood collection and transfer methods used for malaria rapid diagnostic tests

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    Baik Fred

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Four blood collection and transfer devices commonly used for malaria rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs were assessed for their consistency, accuracy and ease of use in the hands of laboratory technicians and village health workers. Methods Laboratory technicians and village health workers collected blood from a finger prick using each device in random order, and deposited the blood either on filter paper or into a suitable casette-type RDT. Consistency and accuracy of volume delivered was determined by comparing the measurements of the resulting blood spots/heights with the measurements of laboratory-prepared pipetted standard volumes. The effect of varying blood volumes on RDT sensitivity and ease of use was also observed. Results There was high variability in blood volume collected by the devices, with the straw and the loop, the most preferred devices, usually transferring volumes greater than intended, while the glass capillary tube and the plastic pipette transferring less volume than intended or none at all. Varying the blood volume delivered to RDTs indicated that this variation is critical to RDT sensitivity only when the transferred volume is very low. Conclusion None of the blood transfer devices assessed performed consistently well. Adequate training on their use is clearly necessary, with more development efforts for improved designs to be used by remote health workers, in mind.

  6. Warm-ups for military fitness testing: rapid evidence assessment of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeno, Stacey A; Purvis, Dianna; Crawford, Cindy; Lee, Courtney; Lisman, Peter; Deuster, Patricia A

    2013-07-01

    Warm-up exercises are commonly used before exercise as a method to physiologically prepare for strenuous physical activity. Various warm-up exercises are often implemented but without scientific merit and, at times, may be detrimental to performance. To date, no systematic reviews have examined the effectiveness of warm-up exercises for military physical fitness test (PFT) or combat fitness test (CFT). The purpose of this rapid evidence assessment of the literature was to examine the quantity, quality, and effectiveness of warm-up exercises for PFT and identify those that might increase PFT and/or CFT scores, as reported in the literature. Literature searches of randomized controlled trials were performed across various databases from database inception to May 2011. Methodological quality of included studies was assessed using the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) 50 criteria for randomized controlled trial designs, and studies were individually described. Subject matter experts summarized the results applicable or generalizable to military testing. The search yielded a total of 1177 citations, with 37 fitting our inclusion criteria. Cardiovascular warm-ups increased sprint/running time, but dynamic stretching and dynamic warm-ups had the most positive outcome for the various exercise tests examined. Systematically, static stretching had no beneficial or detrimental effect on exercise performance but did improve range of movement exercises. Selected warm-up exercise may increase PFT and possibly CFT scores. Further research is needed to investigate the efficacy of dynamic stretching and dynamic warm-ups.

  7. Periodontal and dental effects of surgically assisted rapid maxillary expansion, assessed by using digital study models

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    Danilo Furquim Siqueira

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The present study assessed the maxillary dental arch changes produced by surgically assisted rapid maxillary expansion (SARME. METHODS: Dental casts from 18 patients (mean age of 23.3 years were obtained at treatment onset (T1, three months after SARME (T2 and 6 months after expansion (T3. The casts were scanned in a 3D scanner (D-250, 3Shape, Copenhagen, Denmark. Maxillary dental arch width, dental crown tipping and height were measured and assessed by ANOVA and Tukey's test. RESULTS: Increased transversal widths from T1 and T2 and the maintenance of these values from T2 and T3 were observed. Buccal teeth tipping also showed statistically significant differences, with an increase in all teeth from T1 to T2 and a decrease from T2 to T3. No statistically significant difference was found for dental crown height, except for left first and second molars, although clinically irrelevant. CONCLUSION: SARME proved to be an effective and stable procedure, with minimum periodontal hazards.

  8. Acute Kidney Injury Risk Assessment and the Nephrology Rapid Response Team.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizo-Topete, Lilia Maria; Rosner, Mitchell H; Ronco, Claudio

    2017-01-01

    Acute kidney Injury (AKI) is a serious medical condition affecting more than 10 million people around the world annually and resulting in poor outcomes. It has been suggested that late recognition of the syndrome may lead to delayed interventions with increased morbidity and mortality. Early diagnosis and timely therapeutic strategies may be the cornerstone of future improvement in outcomes. The purpose of this article is to provide a practical model to identify patients at high risk for AKI in different environments, with the goal to prevent AKI. We describe the AKI Risk Assessment (ARA) as a proposed algorithm that systematically evaluates the patient in high-risk situations of AKI in a simple way no matter where the patient is located, and allows different medical specialists to approach patients as a team with a nephrologist to improve outcomes. The goal of the nephrology rapid response team (NRRT) is to prevent AKI or start treatment if AKI is already diagnosed as a consequence of progressive events that can lead to progressive deterioration of kidney tissues and eventual decline in renal function and to ensure appropriate follow-up of patients at risk for progressive chronic kidney disease after the episode of AKI. Prevention is the key to avoid mortality and morbidity associated with AKI. Integration of these assessment tools in a global methodology that includes a multi-disciplinary team (NRRT) is critical to success. Video Journal Club 'Cappuccino with Claudio Ronco' at http://www.karger.com/?doi=452402. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Earthquake Magnitude and Shaking Intensity Dependent Fragility Functions for Rapid Risk Assessment of Buildings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-José Nollet

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available An integrated web application, referred to as ER2 for rapid risk evaluator, is under development for a user-friendly seismic risk assessment by the non-expert public safety community. The assessment of likely negative consequences is based on pre-populated databases of seismic, building inventory and vulnerability parameters. To further accelerate the computation for near real-time analyses, implicit building fragility curves were developed as functions of the magnitude and the intensity of the seismic shaking defined with a single intensity measure, input spectral acceleration at 1.0 s implicitly considering the epicentral distance and local soil conditions. Damage probabilities were compared with those obtained with the standard fragility functions explicitly considering epicentral distances and local site classes in addition to the earthquake magnitudes and respective intensity of the seismic shaking. Different seismic scenarios were considered first for 53 building classes common in Eastern Canada, and then a reduced number of 24 combined building classes was proposed. Comparison of results indicate that the damage predictions with implicit fragility functions for short (M ≤ 5.5 and medium strong motion duration (5.5 < M ≤ 7.5 show low variation with distance and soil class, with average error of less than 3.6%.

  10. A Framework for Rapid Impact Assessment with special reference to wildfires

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isak D. Jansen Van Vuuren

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Geographical Information Systems (GIS technology is a powerful tool that can support decision-making in all the facets of disaster risk management. Being at the centre of all disaster risk management functions, GIS activities such as data acquisition, processing, analysis and visualisation should be seamless from planning to prediction, preparation, response and recovery. A case study of devastating wildfires that destroyed thousands of hectares of agricultural land during August 2011 in the North-West province, South Africa, identifies the lack of a comprehensive framework within which information-based disaster impact assessments are undertaken and which is integrated with the larger context of disaster risk management. Problems relating to the availability, quality and integration of data are typical of the ad hoc approach to the implementation of information technologies, indicating the need for an integrated and coordinated approach. The aim of this paper is to establish a framework for rapid impact assessment, with specific reference to geospatial data management. The framework is put into the theoretical context of disaster risk management and information management, with data acquisition and processing functions being anchored in the principles of information systems theory.

  11. Rapid full-field OCT assessment of clinical tissue specimens (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalimier, Eugénie; Harms, Fabrice; Brossollet, Charles; Benoit, Emilie; Martins, Franck; Boccara, Claude A.

    2016-03-01

    FFOCT (Full Field Optical Coherence Tomography) is a novel optical technology that gives access to very high resolution tomography images of biological tissues within minutes, non-invasively. This makes it an attractive tool to bridge the gap between medical imaging modalities (MRI, ultrasound, CT) used for cancer lesion identification or targeting and histological diagnosis. Clinical tissue specimens, such as surgical cancer margins or biopsies, can potentially be assessed rapidly, by the clinician, in the aim to help him decide on the course of action. A fast FFOCT prototype was built, that provides 1cm2 images with 1 µm resolution in 1 minute, and can accommodate samples up to 50mm diameter. Specific work was carried out to implement a large sample holder, high-speed image acquisition system, optimized scanning, and accelerated GPU tiles stitching. Results obtained on breast, urology, and digestive tissues show the efficiency of the technique for the detection of cancer on clinical tissue specimens, and reinforce the clinical relevance of the technique. The technical and clinical results show that the fast FFOCT system can successfully be used for a fast assessment of cancer excision margins or biopsies providing a very valuable tool in the clinical environment.

  12. The Agile Rapid Global Combat Support (ARGCS) System: A Cost and Benefit Analysis of Including the ARGCS Technologies in the Acquisition of the Enhanced Consolidated Support System (ECASS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-12-01

    Franck and Carmelita Troy in January 2007. Revised in May of 2007, this interim BCA, based on the data then available, offered an assessment of the...www.drivedemand.com/roipart1.html Franck, Raymond and Carmelita Troy, Agile Rapid Global Combat Support, Business Case Analysis, Version 1.0. Naval

  13. Assessing learning outcomes and cost effectiveness of an online sleep curriculum for medical students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bandla, Hari; Franco, Rose A; Simpson, Deborah; Brennan, Kimberly; McKanry, Jennifer; Bragg, Dawn

    2012-08-15

    Sleep disorders are highly prevalent across all age groups but often remain undiagnosed and untreated, resulting in significant health consequences. To overcome an inadequacy of available curricula and learner and instructor time constraints, this study sought to determine if an online sleep medicine curriculum would achieve equivalent learner outcomes when compared with traditional, classroom-based, face-to-face instruction at equivalent costs. Medical students rotating on a required clinical clerkship received instruction in 4 core clinical sleep-medicine competency domains in 1 of 2 delivery formats: a single 2.5-hour face-to-face workshop or 4 asynchronous e-learning modules. Immediate learning outcomes were assessed in a subsequent clerkship using a multiple-choice examination and standardized patient station, with long-term outcomes assessed through analysis of students' patient write-ups for inclusion of sleep complaints and diagnoses before and after the intervention. Instructional costs by delivery format were tracked. Descriptive and inferential statistical analyses compared learning outcomes and costs by instructional delivery method (face-to-face versus e-learning). Face-to-face learners, compared with online learners, were more satisfied with instruction. Learning outcomes (i.e., multiple-choice examination, standardized patient encounter, patient write-up), as measured by short-term and long-term assessments, were roughly equivalent. Design, delivery, and learner-assessment costs by format were equivalent at the end of 1 year, due to higher ongoing teaching costs associated with face-to-face learning offsetting online development and delivery costs. Because short-term and long-term learner performance outcomes were roughly equivalent, based on delivery method, the cost effectiveness of online learning is an economically and educationally viable instruction platform for clinical clerkships.

  14. Development of a rapid loop-mediated isothermal amplification assay for diagnosis and assessment of cure of Leishmania infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Sandeep; Singh, Ruchi; Sharma, Vanila; Bumb, Ram Avtar; Negi, Narendra Singh; Ramesh, V; Salotra, Poonam

    2017-03-23

    Leishmaniasis is a spectrum of diseases with great relevance to public health. Conventional diagnostic methods are time consuming, needing trained personnel. A robust, rapid and cost effective diagnostic test is warranted for on-time diagnosis and field application. We have developed a loop mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay with primers (n = 6) based on Leishmania donovani kDNA for detection of Leishmania infection, using a closed tube to prevent cross-contamination. The assay was used to detect Leishmania infection in biological samples obtained from patients of visceral leishmaniasis (VL), post kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis (PKDL) and cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL). The assay was positive for L. donovani, L. tropica and L. major parasites, with the highest sensitivity towards L. donovani (1 fg DNA). The high sensitivity of the assay for detection of L. donovani was reflected in its ability to detect parasite DNA within 30 min of amplification time with a threshold detection limit of ≥25 copies per reaction. The assay detected parasite in 64 of 66 VL blood samples (sensitivity, 96.9%; 95% CI: 89.6-99.2%), 15 of 15 VL bone marrow aspirate samples (sensitivity, 100%; 95% CI:79.6-100%), 65 of 67 PKDL tissue biopsy samples (sensitivity, 97%; 95% CI:89.7-99.2%). The assay was evaluated in a few cases of CL wherein it was found positive in 8 of 10 tissue biopsies (sensitivity, 80%; 95% CI: 49-94.3%). The assay was negative in all control blood (n = 76) and tissue biopsy (n = 24) samples (specificity, 100%; 95% CI: 96.3-100%). Further, the assay was evaluated for its utility in assessment of cure in treated VL and PKDL patients. The assay detected parasite DNA in 2 of 20VL blood samples and 2 of 21 PKDL tissue samples. Out of 4 cases that were positive for parasite DNA at post treatment stage, 2 patients (1VL and 1 PKDL) returned with relapse. The study demonstrated a Leishmania genus specific closed tube LAMP assay for reliable and rapid

  15. Low-cost Method for Obtaining Medical Rapid Prototyping Using Desktop 3D printing: A Novel Technique for Mandibular Reconstruction Planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velasco, Ignacio; Vahdani, Soheil; Ramos, Hector

    2017-09-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) printing is relatively a new technology with clinical applications, which enable us to create rapid accurate prototype of the selected anatomic region, making it possible to plan complex surgery and pre-bend hardware for individual surgical cases. This study aimed to express our experience with the use of medical rapid prototype (MRP) of the maxillofacial region created by desktop 3D printer and its application in maxillofacial reconstructive surgeries. Three patients with benign mandible tumors were included in this study after obtaining informed consent. All patient's maxillofacial CT scan data was processed by segmentation and isolation software and mandible MRP was printed using our desktop 3D printer. These models were used for preoperative surgical planning and prebending of the reconstruction plate. MRP created by desktop 3D printer is a cost-efficient, quick and easily produced appliance for the planning of reconstructive surgery. It can contribute in patient orientation and helping them in a better understanding of their condition and proposed surgical treatment. It helps surgeons for pre-operative planning in the resection or reconstruction cases and represent an excellent tool in academic setting for residents training. The pre-bended reconstruction plate based on MRP, resulted in decreased surgery time, cost and anesthesia risks on the patients. Key words: 3D printing, medical modeling, rapid prototype, mandibular reconstruction, ameloblastoma.

  16. Using rapid assessment and response to operationalise physical activity strategic health communication campaigns in Tonga.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turk, Tahir; Latu, Netina; Cocker-Palu, Elizabeth; Liavaa, Villiami; Vivili, Paul; Gloede, Sara; Simons, Allison

    2013-04-01

    The aim of the present study was to identify stakeholder and program beneficiary needs and wants in relation to a netball communication strategy in Tonga. In addition, the study aimed to more clearly identify audience segments for targeting of communication campaigns and to identify any barriers or benefits to engaging in the physical activity program. A rapid assessment and response (RAR) methodology was used. The elicitation research encompassed qualitative fieldwork approaches, including semistructured interviews with key informants and focus group discussions with program beneficiaries. Desk research of secondary data sources supported in-field findings. A number of potential barriers to behavioural compliance existed, including cultural factors, gender discrimination, socioeconomic factors, stigmatising attitudes, the threat of domestic violence, infrastructure and training issues. Factors contributing to participation in physical activity included the fun and social aspects of the sport, incentives (including career opportunities, highlighting the health benefits of the activity and the provision of religious and cultural sanctions by local leaders towards the increased physical activity of women. The consultative approach of RAR provided a more in-depth understanding of the need for greater levels of physical activity and opportunities for engagement by all stakeholders. The approach facilitated opportunities for the proposed health behaviours to be realised through the communication strategy. Essential insights for the strategy design were identified from key informants, as well as ensuring future engagement of these stakeholders into the strategy. So what? The expanded use of RAR to inform the design of social marketing interventions is a practical approach to data collection for non-communicable diseases and other health issues in developing countries. The approach allows for the rapid mobilisation of scarce resources for the implementation of more

  17. A regional human services authority's rapid needs assessment of evacuees following natural disasters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Post, David E; Kasofsky, Jan M; Hunte, Christopher N; Diaz, James H

    2008-01-01

    The Atlantic hurricane season of 2005 was not an ordinary season, and Hurricane Katrina was not an ordinary hurricane. Hurricane Katrina damaged more than 93,000 square miles of Gulf of Mexico coastline, displaced more than 1 million residents from New Orleans, and flooded more than 80 percent of New Orleans for weeks, which killed more than 1,300 people, mostly New Orleanians. Inland regional state and local healthcare and human services agencies rushed to assist evacuees, most of whom were uninsured or displaced without employer healthcare coverage. The initial evacuation brought more than 350,000 evacuees seeking shelter to the greater Baton Rouge area, LA, 80 miles north of New Orleans, the closest high ground. This investigation describes the rapid needs assessment developed and conducted by the Capital Area Human Services District of the greater Baton Rouge area, a quasi-governmental human services authority, the regional provider of state-funded mental health, addictive disorders, and developmental disabilities services, on a sample of 6,553 Katrina evacuees in the greater Baton Rouge area. In the event of catastrophic natural and manmade disasters, state and federal decision makers should follow the National Incident Management System and support local designated lead agencies with additional resources as requested. They must rely on designated lead agencies to use their knowledge of the locale, local resources, and relationships with other providers and volunteers to respond rapidly and efficiently to evacuee needs identified through a designated, concise tool that is singularly utilized across the impacted region by all providers to determine the needed response.

  18. Rapid assessment of insect fauna based on local knowledge: comparing ecological and ethnobiological methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Daniele Cristina de Oliveira; Ramos, Marcelo Alves; da Silva, Henrique Costa Hermenegildo; Alves, Angelo Giuseppe Chaves

    2016-03-01

    The rapid assessment of biodiversity making use of surveys of local knowledge has been successful for different biological taxa. However, there are no reports on the testing of such tools for sampling insect fauna. The present study aimed to evaluate the efficiency of different ethnobiological techniques for rapid sampling of insect fauna. Field research for the conventional survey of insect fauna was conducted on a private farm (9 ° 43'38.95 "S, 37 ° 45'11.97" W) , where there was intensive cultivation of okra (Abelmoschus esculentus L. (Moench)). The survey of local entomological knowledge was conducted among all the producers of okra living in the rural villages Pereira, Santa Luzia, and Nassau de Souza, within the Jacaré Curituba irrigated settlement scheme. The combined use of the techniques "free list" and projective interviews was analyzed, using two types of visual stimuli: stock photos and an entomological box. During the conventional survey of insect fauna, the species Bemisia tabaci biotype B, Aphis gossypii, Phenacoccus sp., Icerya purchasi and Lagria villosa were the primary pests found in the okra crop. Regarding the survey of insect pests, the results were convergent  in both techniques (conventional sampling and free list). Comparing the interview with visual stimuli (pictures) and specimen witnesses (entomological box) revealed that the latter was more effective. Techniques based on the recording and analysis of local knowledge about insects are effective for quick sampling of pest insects, but ineffective in sampling predator insects. The utilization of collected insects, infested branches, or photos of the symptoms of damage caused by pests in projective interviews is recommended.

  19. A rapid, noninvasive immunoassay for frataxin: utility in assessment of Friedreich ataxia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deutsch, Eric C; Santani, Avni B; Perlman, Susan L; Farmer, Jennifer M; Stolle, Catherine A; Marusich, Michael F; Lynch, David R

    2010-01-01

    Friedreich ataxia (FRDA) is an autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disorder caused by reduced amounts of the mitochondrial protein frataxin. Frataxin levels in research studies are typically measured via Western blot analysis from patient fibroblasts, lymphocytes, or muscle biopsies; none of these is ideal for rapid detection in large scale clinical studies. Recently, a rapid, noninvasive lateral flow immunoassay was developed to accurately measure picogram levels of frataxin protein and shown to distinguish lymphoblastoid cells from FRDA carriers, patients and controls. We expanded the immunoassay to measure frataxin directly in buccal cells and whole blood from a large cohort of controls, known carriers and patients typical of a clinical trial population. The assay in buccal cells shared a similar degree of variability with previous studies conducted in lymphoblastoid cells (~10% coefficient of variation in controls). Significant differences in frataxin protein quantity were seen between the mean group values of controls, carriers, and patient buccal cells (100, 50.2, and 20.9% of control, respectively) and in protein extracted from whole blood (100, 75.3, and 32.2%, respectively), although there was some overlap between the groups. In addition, frataxin levels were inversely related to GAA repeat length and correlated directly with age of onset. Subjects with one expanded GAA repeat and an identified frataxin point mutation also carried frataxin levels in the disease range. Some patients displaying an FRDA phenotype but carrying only a single identifiable mutation had frataxin levels in the FRDA patient range. One patient from this group has a novel deletion that included exons 2 and 3 of the FXN gene based on multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) analysis of the FXN gene. The lateral flow immunoassay may be a useful means to noninvasively assess frataxin levels repetitively with minimal discomfort in FRDA patients in specific situations such

  20. Cost analysis of the Geriatric Resources for Assessment and Care of Elders care management intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Counsell, Steven R; Callahan, Christopher M; Tu, Wanzhu; Stump, Timothy E; Arling, Gregory W

    2009-08-01

    To provide, from the healthcare delivery system perspective, a cost analysis of the Geriatric Resources for Assessment and Care of Elders (GRACE) intervention, which is effective in improving quality of care and outcomes. Randomized controlled trial with physicians as the unit of randomization. Community-based primary care health centers. Nine hundred fifty-one low-income seniors aged 65 and older; 474 participated in the intervention and 477 in usual care. Home-based care management for 2 years by a nurse practitioner and social worker who collaborated with the primary care physician and a geriatrics interdisciplinary team and were guided by 12 care protocols for common geriatric conditions. Chronic and preventive care costs, acute care costs, and total costs in the full sample (n5951) and predefined high-risk (n5226) and low-risk (n5725) groups. Mean 2-year total costs for intervention patients were not significantly different from those for usual care patients in the full sample ($14,348 vs $11,834; P=.20) and high-risk group ($17,713 vs $18,776; P=.38). In the high-risk group, increases in chronic and preventive care costs were offset by reductions in acute care costs, and the intervention was cost saving during the postintervention, or third, year ($5,088 vs $6,575; Pcosts were higher in the low-risk group ($13,307 vs $9,654; P=.01). In patients at high risk of hospitalization, the GRACE intervention is cost neutral from the healthcare delivery system perspective. A cost-effectiveness analysis is needed to guide decisions about implementation in low-risk patients.

  1. Fabrication and response of alpha-hydroxybutyrate sensors for rapid assessment of cardiometabolic disease risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarswat, Prashant K; Mishra, Yogendra Kumar; Free, Michael L

    2017-03-15

    Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent or delay progression of early-stage type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. Unfortunately, tests such as hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c)/fasting plasma glucose (FPG) alone fail to diagnose or miscategorize up to 40% of individuals with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or frank diabetes based on the rarely utilized oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). The serum metabolite alpha-hydroxybutyrate (AHB) is increasingly recognized as a reliable IGT and diabetes predictor, and can be measured using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. However, to address AHB adoption as a population screening tool, the reliable and low-cost measurement techniques are proposed. A periodate based oxidation was performed for an AHB-based buffer, and both nitroprusside and Raman tests confirmed the formation of a slow-oxidation product. Electrochemical tests of AHB-based buffers using electrodes such as Au-honeycomb, thiol self-assembled monolayers coated Au, 2D material (black-P) coated FTO, (3-aminophenyl) triethoxysilane modified TiO2, were performed. Many of these electrodes exhibited a systematic response when AHB concentration was varied from ~1.0-12.0µg/ml. A colorimetric assay containing a vicinal-diol recognition moiety, additives, and a photoinitiator, exhibited a different color for AHB based buffer. Benesi-Hildebrand analysis indicated the association behavior of boronic acid and AHB. These methods have a potential to be used for rapid point-of-care measurements of AHB that could enhance population-wide diabetes and prediabetes screening strategies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. A comparative assessment of the financial costs and carbon benefits of REDD+ strategies in Southeast Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Victoria; Laurance, Susan G.; Grech, Alana; McGregor, Andrew; Venter, Oscar

    2016-11-01

    REDD+ holds potential for mitigating emissions from tropical forest loss by providing financial incentives for carbon stored in forests, but its economic viability is under scrutiny. The primary narrative raised in the literature is that REDD+ will be of limited utility for reducing forest carbon loss in Southeast Asia, while the level of finance committed falls short of profits from alternative land-use activities in the region, including large-scale timber and oil palm operations. Here we assess the financial costs and carbon benefits of various REDD+ strategies deployed in the region. We find the cost of reducing emissions ranges from 9 to 75 per tonne of avoided carbon emissions. The strategies focused on reducing forest degradation and promoting forest regrowth are the most cost-effective ways of reducing emissions and used in over 60% of REDD+ projects. By comparing the financial costs and carbon benefits of a broader range of strategies than previously assessed, we highlight the variation between different strategies and draw attention to opportunities where REDD+ can achieve maximum carbon benefits cost-effectively. These findings have broad policy implications for Southeast Asia. Until carbon finance escalates, emissions reductions can be maximized from reforestation, reduced-impact logging and investing in improved management of protected areas. Targeting cost-efficient opportunities for REDD+ is important to improve the efficiency of national REDD+ policy, which in-turn fosters greater financial and political support for the scheme.

  3. Rapid assessment of infrastructure of primary health care facilities - a relevant instrument for health care systems management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholz, Stefan; Ngoli, Baltazar; Flessa, Steffen

    2015-05-01

    Health care infrastructure constitutes a major component of the structural quality of a health system. Infrastructural deficiencies of health services are reported in literature and research. A number of instruments exist for the assessment of infrastructure. However, no easy-to-use instruments to assess health facility infrastructure in developing countries are available. Present tools are not applicable for a rapid assessment by health facility staff. Therefore, health information systems lack data on facility infrastructure. A rapid assessment tool for the infrastructure of primary health care facilities was developed by the authors and pilot-tested in Tanzania. The tool measures the quality of all infrastructural components comprehensively and with high standardization. Ratings use a 2-1-0 scheme which is frequently used in Tanzanian health care services. Infrastructural indicators and indices are obtained from the assessment and serve for reporting and tracing of interventions. The tool was pilot-tested in Tanga Region (Tanzania). The pilot test covered seven primary care facilities in the range between dispensary and district hospital. The assessment encompassed the facilities as entities as well as 42 facility buildings and 80 pieces of technical medical equipment. A full assessment of facility infrastructure was undertaken by health care professionals while the rapid assessment was performed by facility staff. Serious infrastructural deficiencies were revealed. The rapid assessment tool proved a reliable instrument of routine data collection by health facility staff. The authors recommend integrating the rapid assessment tool in the health information systems of developing countries. Health authorities in a decentralized health system are thus enabled to detect infrastructural deficiencies and trace the effects of interventions. The tool can lay the data foundation for district facility infrastructure management.

  4. Validation and adaptation of rapid neurodevelopmental assessment instrument for infants in Guatemala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, L; Peñaloza, R A; Stormfields, K; Kooistra, R; Valencia-Moscoso, G; Muslima, H; Khan, N Z

    2015-11-01

    Timely detection of neurodevelopmental impairments in children can prompt referral for critical services that may prevent permanent disability. However, screening of impairments is a significant challenge in low-resource countries. We adapted and validated the rapid neurodevelopmental assessment (RNDA) instrument developed in Bangladesh to assess impairment in nine domains: primitive reflexes, gross and fine motor development, vision, hearing, speech, cognition, behaviour and seizures. We conducted a cross-sectional study of 77 infants (0-12 months) in rural Guatemala in July 2012 and July 2013. We assessed inter-rater reliability and predictive validity between the 27-item RNDA and the 325-item Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, Third Edition (BSID-III) and concurrent validity based on chronic malnutrition, a condition associated with neurodevelopmental impairments. For both RNDA and BSID-III, standardized scores below 80 were defined as borderline impairment. Children came from rural households (92%), were born to indigenous women of Mayan descent (73%) and had moderate or severe growth stunting (43%). Inter-rater reliability for eight RNDA domains was of moderate to high reliability (weighted κ coefficients, 0.49-0.99). Children screened positive for impairment in fine motor (17%) and gross motor (14%) domains using the RNDA. The RNDA had good concurrent ability; infants who were growth stunted had higher mean levels of impairment in gross motor, speech and cognition domains (all p < 0.001). The RNDA took 20-30 min to complete compared with 45-60 min for BSID-III. Wide-scale implementation of a simple, valid and reliable screening tool like the RNDA by community health workers would facilitate early screening and referral of infants at-risk for neurodevelopmental impairment. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Zika Virus in Ontario: Evaluating a Rapid Risk Assessment Tool for Emerging Infectious Disease Threats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Meer, Ryan; Hohenadel, Karin; Fitzgerald-Husek, Alanna; Warshawsky, Bryna; Sider, Doug; Schwartz, Brian; Nelder, Mark P

    To determine the Ontario-specific risk of local and travel-related Zika virus transmission in the context of a public health emergency of international concern, Public Health Ontario (PHO) completed a rapid risk assessment (RRA) on January 29, 2016, using a newly developed RRA guidance tool. The RRA concluded that risk of local mosquito-borne transmission was low, with a high risk of imported cases through travel. The RRA was updated 3 times based on predetermined triggers. An independent evaluation assessed both the application of the RRA guidance tool (process evaluation) and the usefulness of the RRA (outcome evaluation). We conducted face-to-face, semi-structured interviews with 7 individuals who participated in the creation or review of the Zika virus RRA and 4 end-users at PHO and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. An inductive thematic analysis of responses was undertaken, whereby themes were directly informed by the data. The process evaluation determined that most steps outlined in the RRA guidance tool were adhered to, including forming a cross-functional writing team, clarifying the scope and describing context, completing the RRA summary report, and updating the RRA based on predefined triggers. The outcome evaluation found that end-users judged the Zika virus RRA as evidence-informed, useful, consistent, and timely. The evaluation established that the locally tailored guidance tool, adapted from national and international approaches to RRAs, facilitated a systematic, evidence-informed, and timely formal RRA process at PHO for the Zika virus RRA, which met the needs of end-users. Based on the evaluation, PHO will modify future RRAs by incorporating some flexibility into the literature review process to support timeliness of the RRA, explicitly describing the limitations of studies used to inform the RRA, and refining risk algorithms to better suit emerging infectious disease threats. It is anticipated that these refinements will improve upon the

  6. Time-driven activity-based costing: A dynamic value assessment model in pediatric appendicitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yangyang R; Abbas, Paulette I; Smith, Carolyn M; Carberry, Kathleen E; Ren, Hui; Patel, Binita; Nuchtern, Jed G; Lopez, Monica E

    2017-06-01

    Healthcare reform policies are emphasizing value-based healthcare delivery. We hypothesize that time-driven activity-based costing (TDABC) can be used to appraise healthcare interventions in pediatric appendicitis. Triage-based standing delegation orders, surgical advanced practice providers, and a same-day discharge protocol were implemented to target deficiencies identified in our initial TDABC model. Post-intervention process maps for a hospital episode were created using electronic time stamp data for simple appendicitis cases during February to March 2016. Total personnel and consumable costs were determined using TDABC methodology. The post-intervention TDABC model featured 6 phases of care, 33 processes, and 19 personnel types. Our interventions reduced duration and costs in the emergency department (-41min, -$23) and pre-operative floor (-57min, -$18). While post-anesthesia care unit duration and costs increased (+224min, +$41), the same-day discharge protocol eliminated post-operative floor costs (-$306). Our model incorporating all three interventions reduced total direct costs by 11% ($2753.39 to $2447.68) and duration of hospitalization by 51% (1984min to 966min). Time-driven activity-based costing can dynamically model changes in our healthcare delivery as a result of process improvement interventions. It is an effective tool to continuously assess the impact of these interventions on the value of appendicitis care. II, Type of study: Economic Analysis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. An assessment of monitoring requirements and costs of 'Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation'

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCallum Ian

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Negotiations on a future climate policy framework addressing Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD are ongoing. Regardless of how such a framework will be designed, many technical solutions of estimating forest cover and forest carbon stock change exist to support policy in monitoring and accounting. These technologies typically combine remotely sensed data with ground-based inventories. In this article we assess the costs of monitoring REDD based on available technologies and requirements associated with key elements of REDD policy. Results We find that the design of a REDD policy framework (and specifically its rules can have a significant impact on monitoring costs. Costs may vary from 0.5 to 550 US$ per square kilometre depending on the required precision of carbon stock and area change detection. Moreover, they follow economies of scale, i.e. single country or project solutions will face relatively higher monitoring costs. Conclusion Although monitoring costs are relatively small compared to other cost items within a REDD system, they should be shared not only among countries but also among sectors, because an integrated monitoring system would have multiple benefits for non-REDD management. Overcoming initialization costs and unequal access to monitoring technologies is crucial for implementation of an integrated monitoring system, and demands for international cooperation.

  8. Forced Adoption of IFRS by Czech Non-Listed Companies: An Assessment of Benefits and Costs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Procházka

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper deals with the effects of IFRS adoption by a specific group of companies. It focuses on the so-called forced IFRS adopters, which are such private (non-listed companies that (a are forced to adopt the IFRS (because their parent prepares IFRS consolidated statements and simultaneously (b are not permitted by the regulatory framework of a given jurisdiction to apply the IFRS in their individual financial statements on a  voluntary basis. In particular, benefits and costs connected with the forced IFRS adoption by Czech private companies are assessed. The results, based on a  questionnaire survey among affected companies, confirm the intuitive presumption that accounting treatment of certain items significantly differs between Czech GAAP and IFRS, which requires the use of advanced methods for the conversion of financial statements. Regardless of which conversion method is used, perceptions of both benefits and appropriateness of incurred costs vary across entities. The benefit-to-cost ratio for the two most commonly used conversion methods (spreadsheets and dual accounting software is comparable, as the first method generates fewer benefits for lower costs and the second method is connected with more benefits, but at higher costs. Finally, the survey reveals that actual costs of IFRS adoption are higher than the expected costs regardless of the conversion method applied.

  9. Assessing the costs and benefits of improved land management practices in three watershed areas in Ethiopia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abonesh Tesfaye

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Unsustainable land use management and the resulting soil erosion are among the most pervasive problems in rural Ethiopia, where most of the country’s people live, jeopardizing food security. Despite various efforts to introduce soil conservation measures and assess their costs and benefits, it is unclear how efficient these measures are from an economic point of view in securing food production. This paper examines the costs and benefits of three soil conservation measures applied in the country in three different rural districts facing different degrees of soil erosion problems using survey data collected from 750 farm households. A production function is estimated to quantify the costs and benefits of more sustainable land use management practices. We show that the soil conservation measures significantly increase productivity and hence food security. Comparing the costs and benefits, the results indicate that implementing soil conservation measures would benefit farm communities in the case study areas through increased grain productivity and food security.

  10. An Approach for Rapid Assessment of Seismic Hazards in Turkey by Continuous GPS Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haluk Ozener

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The Earth is being monitored every day by all kinds of sensors. This leads an overflow of data in all branches of science nowadays, especially in Earth Sciences. Data storage and data processing are the problems to be solved by current technologies, as well as by those accessing and analyzing these large data sources. Once solutions have been created for collecting, storing and accessing data, then the challenge becomes how to effectively share data, applications and processing resources across many locations. The Global Positioning System (GPS sensors are being used as geodetic instruments to precisely detect crustal motion in the Earth’s surface. Rapid access to data provided by GPS sensors is becoming increasingly important for deformation monitoring and rapid hazard assessments. Today, reliable and fast collection and distribution of data is a challenge and advances in Internet technologies have made it easier to provide the needed data. This study describes a system which will be able to generate strain maps using data from continuous GPS stations for seismic hazard analysis. Strain rates are a key factor in seismic hazard analyses. Turkey is a country prone to earthquakes with a long history of seismic hazards and disasters. This situation has resulted in the studies by Earth scientists that focus on Turkey in order to improve their understanding of the Earth’s crust structure and seismic hazards. Nevertheless, the construction of models, data access and analysis are often not fast as expected, but the combination of Internet technologies with continuous GPS sensors can be a solution to overcome this problem. This system would have the potential to answer many important questions to assess seismic hazards such as how much stretching, squashing and shearing is taking place in different parts of Turkey, and how do velocities change from place to place? Seismic hazard estimation is the most effective way to reduce

  11. An Approach for Rapid Assessment of Seismic Hazards in Turkey by Continuous GPS Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozener, Haluk; Dogru, Asli; Unlutepe, Ahmet

    2009-01-01

    The Earth is being monitored every day by all kinds of sensors. This leads an overflow of data in all branches of science nowadays, especially in Earth Sciences. Data storage and data processing are the problems to be solved by current technologies, as well as by those accessing and analyzing these large data sources. Once solutions have been created for collecting, storing and accessing data, then the challenge becomes how to effectively share data, applications and processing resources across many locations. The Global Positioning System (GPS) sensors are being used as geodetic instruments to precisely detect crustal motion in the Earth's surface. Rapid access to data provided by GPS sensors is becoming increasingly important for deformation monitoring and rapid hazard assessments. Today, reliable and fast collection and distribution of data is a challenge and advances in Internet technologies have made it easier to provide the needed data. This study describes a system which will be able to generate strain maps using data from continuous GPS stations for seismic hazard analysis. Strain rates are a key factor in seismic hazard analyses. Turkey is a country prone to earthquakes with a long history of seismic hazards and disasters. This situation has resulted in the studies by Earth scientists that focus on Turkey in order to improve their understanding of the Earth's crust structure and seismic hazards. Nevertheless, the construction of models, data access and analysis are often not fast as expected, but the combination of Internet technologies with continuous GPS sensors can be a solution to overcome this problem. This system would have the potential to answer many important questions to assess seismic hazards such as how much stretching, squashing and shearing is taking place in different parts of Turkey, and how do velocities change from place to place? Seismic hazard estimation is the most effective way to reduce earthquake losses. It is clear that reliability

  12. Prevalence of visual impairment due to uncorrected refractive error: Results from Delhi-Rapid Assessment of Visual Impairment Study

    OpenAIRE

    Suraj Singh Senjam; Praveen Vashist; Noopur Gupta; Sumit Malhotra; Vasundhara Misra; Amit Bhardwaj; Vivek Gupta

    2016-01-01

    Aim: To estimate the prevalence of visual impairment (VI) due to uncorrected refractive error (URE) and to assess the barriers to utilization of services in the adult urban population of Delhi. Materials and Methods: A population-based rapid assessment of VI was conducted among people aged 40 years and above in 24 randomly selected clusters of East Delhi district. Presenting visual acuity (PVA) was assessed in each eye using Snellen's E chart. Pinhole examination was done if PVA was

  13. A Non-linear Eulerian Approach for Assessment of Health-cost Externalities of Air Pollution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Mikael Skou; Frohn, Lise Marie; Nielsen, Jytte Seested

    Integrated assessment models which are used in Europe to account for the external costs of air pollution as a support for policy-making and cost-benefit analysis have in order to cope with complexity resorted to simplifications of the non-linear dynamics of atmospheric sciences. In this paper we...... explore the possible significance of such simplifications by reviewing the improvements that result from applying a state-of-the-art atmospheric model for regional transport and non-linear chemical transformations of air pollutants to the impact-pathway approach of the ExternE-method. The more rigorous...... approach results in lower damage costs per unit of NOx and allows for an improved assessment of ozone formation....

  14. Integrating Life-cycle Assessment into Transport Cost-benefit Analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manzo, Stefano; Salling, Kim Bang

    2016-01-01

    Traditional transport Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA) commonly ignores the indirect environmental impacts of an infrastructure project deriving from the overall life-cycle of the different project components. Such indirect impacts are instead of key importance in order to assess the long......-term sustainability of a transport infrastructure project. In the present study we suggest to overcome this limit by combining a conventional life-cycle assessment approach with standard transport cost-benefit analysis. The suggested methodology is tested upon a case study project related to the construction of a new...... fixed link across the Roskilde fjord in Frederikssund (Denmark). The results are then compared with those from a standard CBA framework. The analysis shows that indirect environmental impacts represent a relevant share of the estimated costs of the project, clearly affecting the final project evaluation...

  15. Learning from a Rapid Health Impact Assessment of a proposed maternity service reconfiguration in the English NHS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haroon Sophie

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Within many parts of the country, the NHS is undertaking reconfiguration of services. Such proposals can prove a tipping point and provoke public protest, often with significant involvement of local and national politicians. We undertook a rapid Health Impact Assessment (HIA of a proposed reconfiguration of maternity services in Huddersfield and Halifax in England. The aim of the HIA was to help the PCT Boards to assess the reconfiguration's possible consequences on access to maternity services, and maternal and infant health outcomes across different socio-economic groups in Kirklees. We report on the findings of the HIA and the usefulness of the process to decision making. Methods This HIA used routine maternity data for 2004–2005 in Huddersfield, in addition to published evidence. Standard HIA techniques were used. Results We re-highlighted the socio economic differences in smoking status at booking and quitting during pregnancy. We focused on the key concerns of the public, that of adverse obstetric events on a Midwife Led Unit (MLU with distant obstetric cover. We estimate that twenty percent of women giving birth in a MLU may require urgent transfer to obstetric care during labour. There were no significant socio economic differences. Much of the risk can be mitigated though robust risk management policies. Additional travelling distances and costs could affect lower socio-economic groups the greatest because of lower car ownership and geographical location in relation to the units. There is potential that with improved community antenatal and post natal care, population outcomes could improve significantly, the available evidence supports this view. Conclusion Available evidence suggests that maternity reconfiguration towards enhanced community care could have many potential benefits but carries risk. Investment is needed to realise the former and mitigate the latter. The usefulness of this Health Impact Assessment

  16. An assessment of interventions for improving communication and trust in cost benefit analysis processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beukers, E.; Bertolini, L.; te Brömmelstroet, M.

    2014-01-01

    Evaluation literature suggests that assessments of integrated transport plans should be an inclusive dialogue, for which it is crucial that participants communicate with and trust each other. However, cost benefit analysis (CBA) of integrated transport plans is often characterized by communication

  17. RSV vaccine in development : Assessing the potential cost-effectiveness in the Dutch elderly population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijboom, M J; Pouwels, K B; Luytjes, W; Postma, Maarten; Hak, E

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is increasingly recognized as an important cause of morbidity, mortality and health-care utilization in the elderly population. A theoretical model was built to assess the levels of vaccine effectiveness and vaccine costs for which a hypothetical

  18. Assessing the costs and benefits of improved land management practices in three watershed areas in Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tesfaye, Abonesh; Brouwer, Roy; van der Zaag, P.; Negatu, Workneh

    2016-01-01

    Unsustainable land use management and the resulting soil erosion are among the most pervasive problems in rural Ethiopia, where most of the country's people live, jeopardizing food security. Despite various efforts to introduce soil conservation measures and assess their costs and benefits, it is

  19. Prospective study on cost-effectiveness of home-based motor assessment in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cubo, E; Mariscal, N; Solano, B; Becerra, V; Armesto, D; Calvo, S; Arribas, J; Seco, J; Martinez, A; Zorrilla, L; Heldman, D

    2017-02-01

    Introduction Treatment adjustments in Parkinson's disease (PD) are in part dependent on motor assessments. The aim of this study was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of home-based motor monitoring plus standard in-office visits versus in-office visits alone in patients with advanced PD. Methods The procedures consisted of a prospective, one-year follow-up, randomized, case-control study. A total of 40 patients with advanced PD were randomized into two groups: 20 patients underwent home-based motor monitoring by using wireless motion sensor technology, while the other 20 patients had in-office visits. Motor and non-motor symptom severities, quality of life, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and comorbidities were assessed every four months. Direct costs were assessed using a standardized questionnaire. Cost-effectiveness was assessed using the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER). Results Both groups of PD patients were largely comparable in their clinical and demographic variables at baseline; however, there were more participants using levodopa-carbidopa intestinal gel in the home-based motor monitoring group. There was a trend for lower Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale functional status (UPDRS II) scores in the patients monitored at home compared to the standard clinical follow-up ( p = 0.06). However, UPDRS parts I, III, IV and quality-adjusted life-years scores were similar between both groups. Home-based motor monitoring was cost-effective in terms of improvement of functional status, motor severity, and motor complications (UPDRS II, III; IV subscales), with an ICER/UPDRS ranging from €126.72 to €701.31, respectively. Discussion Home-based motor monitoring is a tool which collects cost-effective clinical information and helps augment health care for patients with advanced PD.

  20. Final Report - Stationary and Emerging Market Fuel Cell System Cost Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Contini, Vince [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Heinrichs, Mike [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); George, Paul [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Eubanks, Fritz [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Jansen, Mike [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Valluri, Manoj [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Mansouri, Mahan [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States); Swickrath, Mike [Battelle Memorial Inst., Columbus, OH (United States)

    2017-04-30

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is focused on providing a portfolio of technology solutions to meet energy security challenges of the future. Fuel cells are a part of this portfolio of technology offerings. To help meet these challenges and supplement the understanding of the current research, Battelle has executed a five-year program that evaluated the total system costs and total ownership costs of two technologies: (1) an ~80 °C polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) technology and (2) a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology, operating with hydrogen or reformate for different applications. Previous research conducted by Battelle, and more recently by other research institutes, suggests that fuel cells can offer customers significant fuel and emission savings along with other benefits compared to incumbent alternatives. For this project, Battelle has applied a proven cost assessment approach to assist the DOE Fuel Cell Technologies Program in making decisions regarding research and development, scale-up, and deployment of fuel cell technology. The cost studies and subsequent reports provide accurate projections of current system costs and the cost impact of state-of-the-art technologies in manufacturing, increases in production volume, and changes to system design on system cost and life cycle cost for several near-term and emerging fuel cell markets. The studies also provide information on types of manufacturing processes that must be developed to commercialize fuel cells and also provide insights into the optimization needed for use of off-the-shelf components in fuel cell systems. Battelle’s analysis is intended to help DOE prioritize investments in research and development of components to reduce the costs of fuel cell systems while considering systems optimization.

  1. Obesity and Surgical Treatment – A Cost-Effectiveness Assessment for Sweden

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sixten Borg

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Background:The rising trend in the prevalence of obesity has during the past decades become a major public health concern in many countries, as obesity may lead to comorbidities and death. A frequent used marker for obesity is the Body Mass Index (BMI. The cost of treatment for obesity related diseases has become a heavy burden on national health care budget in many countries. While diet and exercise are the cornerstones of weight management, pharmaco­therapy is often needed to achieve and maintain desired weight loss.  In some cases of extreme obesity, bariatric surgery may be recommended. It is expected to increase by 50% in Sweden.Objective: The overall objective was to develop a cost-effectiveness model using the best available evidence to assess the cost-effectiveness of gastric bypass (GBP surgical treatments for obesity in adult patients, in comparison with conventional treatment (CT, in Sweden from a healthcare perspective. With the model we also seeked to identify the lower cut-off point using BMI criteria, for the surgical intervention to be cost-effective. Methods:A micro-simulation model with an underlying Markov methodology was developed, that simulates individual patients. It simulates the outcomes of the patients in terms of treatment costs, life years, and quality adjusted life years (QALY over his/her remaining lifetime. The costs are presented in SEK in the year 2006 price level (1 SEK ≈ 0.11 EUR ≈ 0.14 USD.Results: We estimated that the incremental cost per QALY gained will not exceed SEK 33,000 per QALY in patients with BMI < 35. In patients with BMI > 35 kg/m2, gastric bypass surgery has lower costs compared to conventional treatment. Conclusion: Gastric bypass surgery is a cost-effective intervention compared to conventional treatment consisting of watchful waiting, diet and exercise.

  2. Rapid assessment of visual impairment (RAVI in marine fishing communities in South India - study protocol and main findings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madala Sreenivas R

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Reliable data are a pre-requisite for planning eye care services. Though conventional cross sectional studies provide reliable information, they are resource intensive. A novel rapid assessment method was used to investigate the prevalence and causes of visual impairment and presbyopia in subjects aged 40 years and older. This paper describes the detailed methodology and study procedures of Rapid Assessment of Visual Impairment (RAVI project. Methods A population-based cross-sectional study was conducted using cluster random sampling in the coastal region of Prakasam district of Andhra Pradesh in India, predominantly inhabited by fishing communities. Unaided, aided and pinhole visual acuity (VA was assessed using a Snellen chart at a distance of 6 meters. The VA was re-assessed using a pinhole, if VA was Results The data collection was completed in Conclusion There is a high prevalence of visual impairment in marine fishing communities in Prakasam district in India. The data from this rapid assessment survey can now be used as a baseline to start eye care services in this region. The rapid assessment methodology (RAVI reported in this paper is robust, quick and has the potential to be replicated in other areas.

  3. A tool for rapid assessment of product usability and universal design: development and preliminary psychometric testing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenker, James A; Nasarwanji, Mahiyar; Paquet, Victor; Feathers, David

    2011-01-01

    While there are many available tools and methods to evaluate product usability, few have been tested on user groups with disabilities and even fewer systematically consider universal design principles. This paper describes the development and preliminary psychometric testing of the Rapid Assessment of Product Usability & Universal Design (RAPUUD), a 12-item user-report tool based on the seven principles of universal design. A preliminary set of items was created to elicit ratings of diverse product characteristics (e.g., physical effort, cognitive effort, assistance required, safety). Data were gathered from 61 participants who rated the usability of products they use in their own environments. Each item elicited a full range of responses, with no apparent floor or ceiling effects. Collectively, the 12 items achieved a high internal consistency (Cronbach's α=0.80). The data indicate that the tool was sensitive to differences in functional abilities, as well as differences in product characteristics. The instrument was usable for a range of consumer products, though not all items were appropriate for each and every product. The results suggest that the instrument could become a pragmatic tool for designers to identify usability problems experienced by a diversity of user populations. © 2011 - IOS Press and the authors. All rights reserved

  4. Use of a modified cluster sampling method to perform rapid needs assessment after Hurricane Andrew.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hlady, W G; Quenemoen, L E; Armenia-Cope, R R; Hurt, K J; Malilay, J; Noji, E K; Wurm, G

    1994-04-01

    To rapidly obtain population-based estimates of needs in the early aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in South Florida. We used a modified cluster-sampling method (the Expanded Programme on Immunization [EPI] method) for three surveys. We selected a systematic sample of 30 quarter-mile square clusters for each survey and, beginning from a random start, interviewed members of seven consecutive occupied households in each cluster. Two surveys were of the most affected area (1990 population, 32,672) at three and ten days after the hurricane struck; one survey was of a less affected area (1990 population, 15,576) seven days after the hurricane struck. Results were available within 24 hours of beginning each survey. Initial findings emphasized the need for restoring utilities and sanitation and helped to focus medical relief on primary care and preventive services. The second survey of the most affected area showed improvement in the availability of food, water, electricity, and sanitation (P < or = .05). There was no evidence of disease outbreaks. For the first time, the EPI method provided population-based information to guide and evaluate relief operations after a sudden-impact natural disaster. An improvement over previous approaches, the EPI method warrants further evaluation as a needs assessment tool in acute disasters.

  5. Radiometric and geometric assessment of data from the RapidEye constellation of satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chander, Gyanesh; Haque, Md. Obaidul; Sampath, Aparajithan; Brunn, A.; Trosset, G.; Hoffmann, D.; Roloff, S.; Thiele, M.; Anderson, C.

    2013-01-01

    To monitor land surface processes over a wide range of temporal and spatial scales, it is critical to have coordinated observations of the Earth's surface using imagery acquired from multiple spaceborne imaging sensors. The RapidEye (RE) satellite constellation acquires high-resolution satellite images covering the entire globe within a very short period of time by sensors identical in construction and cross-calibrated to each other. To evaluate the RE high-resolution Multi-spectral Imager (MSI) sensor capabilities, a cross-comparison between the RE constellation of sensors was performed first using image statistics based on large common areas observed over pseudo-invariant calibration sites (PICS) by the sensors and, second, by comparing the on-orbit radiometric calibration temporal trending over a large number of calibration sites. For any spectral band, the individual responses measured by the five satellites of the RE constellation were found to differ B2B) alignment of the image data sets. The position accuracy was assessed by comparing the RE imagery against high-resolution aerial imagery, while the B2B characterization was performed by registering each band against every other band to ensure that the proper band alignment is provided for an image product. The B2B results indicate that the internal alignments of these five RE bands are in agreement, with bands typically registered to within 0.25 pixels of each other or better.

  6. Comparison between rapid and mixed maxillary expansion through an assessment of arch changes on dental casts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grassia, Vincenzo; d'Apuzzo, Fabrizia; Jamilian, Abdolreza; Femiano, Felice; Favero, Lorenzo; Perillo, Letizia

    2015-01-01

    Aim of this retrospective observational study was to compare upper and lower dental changes in patients treated with Rapid Maxillary Expansion (RME) and Mixed Maxillary Expansion (MME), assessed by dental cast analysis. Treatment groups consisted of 42 patients: the RME group (n = 21) consisted of 13 female and 8 male subjects with the mean age of 8.8 years ± 1.37 at T0 and 9.6 years ± 1.45 at T1; the MME group (n = 21) consisted of 12 female and 9 male patients with a mean age of 8.9 years ± 2.34 at T0 and 10.5 years ± 2.08 at T1. The upper and lower arch analysis was performed on four dental bilateral landmarks, on upper and lower casts; also upper and lower arch depths were measured. The groups were compared using independent sample t-test to estimate dental changes in upper and lower arches. Before expansion treatment (T0), the groups were similar for all examined variables (p>0.05). In both RME and MME group, significant increments in all the variables for maxillary and mandibular arch widths were observed after treatment. No significant differences in maxillary and mandibular arch depths were observed at the end of treatment in both groups. An evaluation of the changes after RME and MME (T1) showed statistically significant differences in mandibular arch depth (plip bumper effects" observed in the MME protocol.

  7. Application of near-infrared spectroscopy for the rapid quality assessment of Radix Paeoniae Rubra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhan, Hao; Fang, Jing; Tang, Liying; Yang, Hongjun; Li, Hua; Wang, Zhuju; Yang, Bin; Wu, Hongwei; Fu, Meihong

    2017-08-01

    Near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy with multivariate analysis was used to quantify gallic acid, catechin, albiflorin, and paeoniflorin in Radix Paeoniae Rubra, and the feasibility to classify the samples originating from different areas was investigated. A new high-performance liquid chromatography method was developed and validated to analyze gallic acid, catechin, albiflorin, and paeoniflorin in Radix Paeoniae Rubra as the reference. Partial least squares (PLS), principal component regression (PCR), and stepwise multivariate linear regression (SMLR) were performed to calibrate the regression model. Different data pretreatments such as derivatives (1st and 2nd), multiplicative scatter correction, standard normal variate, Savitzky-Golay filter, and Norris derivative filter were applied to remove the systematic errors. The performance of the model was evaluated according to the root mean square of calibration (RMSEC), root mean square error of prediction (RMSEP), root mean square error of cross-validation (RMSECV), and correlation coefficient (r). The results show that compared to PCR and SMLR, PLS had a lower RMSEC, RMSECV, and RMSEP and higher r for all the four analytes. PLS coupled with proper pretreatments showed good performance in both the fitting and predicting results. Furthermore, the original areas of Radix Paeoniae Rubra samples were partly distinguished by principal component analysis. This study shows that NIR with PLS is a reliable, inexpensive, and rapid tool for the quality assessment of Radix Paeoniae Rubra.

  8. Quality controls in cellular immunotherapies: rapid assessment of clinical grade dendritic cells by gene expression profiling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castiello, Luciano; Sabatino, Marianna; Zhao, Yingdong; Tumaini, Barbara; Ren, Jiaqiang; Ping, Jin; Wang, Ena; Wood, Lauren V; Marincola, Francesco M; Puri, Raj K; Stroncek, David F

    2013-02-01

    Cell-based immunotherapies are among the most promising approaches for developing effective and targeted immune response. However, their clinical usefulness and the evaluation of their efficacy rely heavily on complex quality control assessment. Therefore, rapid systematic methods are urgently needed for the in-depth characterization of relevant factors affecting newly developed cell product consistency and the identification of reliable markers for quality control. Using dendritic cells (DCs) as a model, we present a strategy to comprehensively characterize manufactured cellular products in order to define factors affecting their variability, quality and function. After generating clinical grade human monocyte-derived mature DCs (mDCs), we tested by gene expression profiling the degrees of product consistency related to the manufacturing process and variability due to intra- and interdonor factors, and how each factor affects single gene variation. Then, by calculating for each gene an index of variation we selected candidate markers for identity testing, and defined a set of genes that may be useful comparability and potency markers. Subsequently, we confirmed the observed gene index of variation in a larger clinical data set. In conclusion, using high-throughput technology we developed a method for the characterization of cellular therapies and the discovery of novel candidate quality assurance markers.

  9. Use of rapid needs assessment as a tool to identify vaccination delays in Guatemala and Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Ardenne, Katie K; Darrow, Juliana; Furniss, Anna; Chavez, Catia; Hernandez, Herminio; Berman, Stephen; Asturias, Edwin J

    2016-03-29

    To explore the use of rapid needs assessment (RNA) surveys to determine the prevalence and factors contributing to delays in vaccination of children in two low middle-income countries (LMIC). Data from two RNA surveys performed as part of program improvement evaluations in Guatemala and Peru were used for this analysis. The primary endpoint was the timeliness of immunization with delay defined as administration of vaccines beyond 28 days from recommended age for DTwP-HepB-Hib (Penta) and measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccines, as well as past age-restrictions for rotavirus vaccine. Independent risk factors analyzed included child's gender, birth year, number of children in household, maternal age, maternal education, and food insecurity. Vaccine information was available from 811 children from 838 households surveyed. High rate of immunization delays was observed, with 75.6% of children in Guatemala and 57.8% of children in Peru being delayed for the third dose of Penta primary series. Factors associated with delayed vaccination in Guatemala included advanced maternal age and increased number of children in household. In Peru, significant associations were birth year before 2009, lower maternal education level, and increased number of children in household. RNA is a fast and effective method to identify timely vaccine coverage and derive a hypothesis of factors possibly associated with vaccination delay. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Utility and assessment of non-technical skills for rapid response systems and medical emergency teams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalwin, R P; Flabouris, A

    2013-09-01

    Efforts are ongoing to improve outcomes from cardiac arrest and medical emergencies. A promising quality improvement modality is use of non-technical skills (NTS) that aim to address human factors through improvements in performance of leadership, communication, situational awareness and decision-making. Originating in the airline industry, NTS training has been successfully introduced into anaesthesia, surgery, emergency medicine and other acute medical specialities. Some aspects of NTS have already achieved acceptance for cardiac arrest teams. Leadership skills are emphasised in advanced life support training and have shown favourable results when employed in simulated and clinical resuscitation scenarios. The application of NTS in medical emergency teams as part of a rapid response system attending medical emergencies is less certain; however, observations of simulations have also shown promise. This review highlights the potential benefits of NTS competency for cardiac arrest teams and, more importantly, medical emergency teams because of the diversity of clinical scenarios encountered. Discussion covers methods to assess and refine NTS and NTS training to optimise performance in the clinical environment. Increasing attention should be applied to yielding meaningful patient and organisational outcomes from use of NTS. Similarly, implementation of any training course should receive appropriate scrutiny to refine team and institutional performance. © 2013 The Authors; Internal Medicine Journal © 2013 Royal Australasian College of Physicians.

  11. Development and evaluation of an office ergonomic risk checklist: ROSA--rapid office strain assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonne, Michael; Villalta, Dino L; Andrews, David M

    2012-01-01

    The Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA) was designed to quickly quantify risks associated with computer work and to establish an action level for change based on reports of worker discomfort. Computer use risk factors were identified in previous research and standards on office design for the chair, monitor, telephone, keyboard and mouse. The risk factors were diagrammed and coded as increasing scores from 1 to 3. ROSA final scores ranged in magnitude from 1 to 10, with each successive score representing an increased presence of risk factors. Total body discomfort and ROSA final scores for 72 office workstations were significantly correlated (R = 0.384). ROSA final scores exhibited high inter- and intra-observer reliability (ICCs of 0.88 and 0.91, respectively). Mean discomfort increased with increasing ROSA scores, with a significant difference occurring between scores of 3 and 5 (out of 10). A ROSA final score of 5 might therefore be useful as an action level indicating when immediate change is necessary. ROSA proved to be an effective and reliable method for identifying computer use risk factors related to discomfort. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  12. Assessment of Mechanical Performance of Bone Architecture Using Rapid Prototyping Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saparin, Peter; Woesz, Alexander; Thomsen, Jasper S.; Fratzl, Peter

    2008-06-01

    The aim of this on-going research project is to assess the influence of bone microarchitecture on the mechanical performance of trabecular bone. A testing chain consist-ing of three steps was established: 1) micro computed tomography (μCT) imaging of human trabecular bone; 2) building of models of the bone from a light-sensitive polymer using Rapid Prototyping (RP); 3) mechanical testing of the models in a material testing machine. A direct resampling procedure was developed to convert μCT data into the format of the RP machine. Standardized parameters for production and testing of the plastic models were established by use of regular cellular structures. Next, normal, osteoporotic, and extreme osteoporotic vertebral trabecular bone architectures were re-produced by RP and compression tested. We found that normal architecture of vertebral trabecular bone exhibit behaviour characteristic of a cellular structure. In normal bone the fracture occurs at much higher strain values that in osteoporotic bone. After the fracture a normal trabecular architecture is able to carry much higher loads than an osteoporotic architecture. However, no statistically significant differences were found in maximal stress during uniaxial compression of the central part of normal, osteoporotic, and extreme osteoporotic vertebral trabecular bone. This supports the hypothesis that osteoporotic trabecular bone can compensate for a loss of trabeculae by thickening the remaining trabeculae in the loading direction (compensatory hypertrophy). The developed approach could be used for mechanical evaluation of structural data acquired non-invasively and assessment of changes in performance of bone architecture.

  13. Rapid assessment of stony coral richness and condition on Saba Bank, Netherlands Antilles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila A McKenna

    Full Text Available The benthic habitats of Saba Bank (17 degrees 25'N, 63 degrees 30'W are at risk from maritime traffic, especially oil tankers (e.g., anchoring. To mitigate this risk, information is needed on the biodiversity and location of habitats to develop a zone use plan. A rapid survey to document the biodiversity of macro-algae, sponges, corals and fishes was conducted. Here we report on the richness and condition of stony coral species at 18 select sites, and we test for the effects of bottom type, depth, and distance from platform edge. Species richness was visually assessed by roving scuba diver with voucher specimens of each species collected. Coral tissue was examined for bleaching and diseases. Thirty-three coral species were documented. There were no significant differences in coral composition among bottom types or depth classes (ANOSIM, P>0.05. There was a significant difference between sites (ANOSIM, P<0.05 near and far from the platform edge. The number of coral species observed ranged from zero and one in algal dominated habitats to 23 at a reef habitat on the southern edge of the Bank. Five reef sites had stands of Acropora cervicornis, a critically endangered species on the IUCN redlist. Bleaching was evident at 82% of the sites assessed with 43 colonies bleached. Only three coral colonies were observed to have disease. Combining our findings with that of other studies, a total of 43 species have been documented from Saba Bank. The coral assemblage on the bank is representative and typical of those found elsewhere in the Caribbean. Although our findings will help develop effective protection, more information is needed on Saba Bank to create a comprehensive zone use plan. Nevertheless, immediate action is warranted to protect the diverse coral reef habitats documented here, especially those containing A. cervicornis.

  14. A rapid method for assessing the environmental performance of commercial farms in the Pampas of Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viglizzo, E F; Frank, F; Bernardos, J; Buschiazzo, D E; Cabo, S

    2006-06-01

    The generation of reliable updated information is critical to support the harmonization of socio-economic and environmental issues in a context of sustainable development. The agro-environmental assessment and management of agricultural systems often relies on indicators that are necessary to make sound decisions. This work aims to provide an approach to (a) assess the environmental performance of commercial farms in the Pampas of Argentina, and (b) propose a methodological framework to calculate environmental indicators that can rapidly be applied to practical farming. 120 commercial farms scattered across the Pampas were analyzed in this study during 2002 and 2003. Eleven basic indicators were identified and calculation methods described. Such indicators were fossil energy (FE) use, FE use efficiency, nitrogen (N) balance, phosphorus (P) balance, N contamination risk, P contamination risk, pesticide contamination risk, soil erosion risk, habitat intervention, changes in soil carbon stock, and balance of greenhouse gases. A model named Agro-Eco-Index was developed on a Microsoft-Excel support to incorporate on-farm collected data and facilitate the calculation of indicators by users. Different procedures were applied to validate the model and present the results to the users. Regression models (based on linear and non-linear models) were used to validate the comparative performance of the study farms across the Pampas. An environmental dashboard was provided to represent in a graphical way the behavior of farms. The method provides a tool to discriminate environmentally friendly farms from those that do not pay enough attention to environmental issues. Our procedure might be useful for implementing an ecological certification system to reward a good environmental behavior in society (e.g., through tax benefits) and generate a commercial advantage (e.g., through the allocation of green labels) for committed farmers.

  15. Use of automated radon measurements for rapid assessment of groundwater flow into Florida streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnett, William C.; Peterson, Richard N.; Santos, Isaac R.; Hicks, Richard W.

    2010-01-01

    SummaryNaturally occurring 222Rn (radon; t1/2 = 3.8 days) is a good natural tracer of groundwater discharge because it is conservative and typically 2-3 orders of magnitude higher in groundwater than surface waters. In addition, new technology has allowed rapid and inexpensive field measurements of radon-in-water. Results from the C-25 Canal, a man-made canal in east-central Florida thought to be dominated by groundwater inflows, display how one can quickly assess a water body for locations of groundwater inputs. Although only the eastern portion of the canal was surveyed, use of a few assumptions together with some continuous radon measurements allowed reasonable estimates of the groundwater inflows to be made. Groundwater discharge estimates of 327,000 m 3/day and 331,000 m 3/day were measured for two stations based on determining the groundwater fraction of the total stream flow. This fraction in each case was calculated by correcting radon concentrations for decay over transit times determined from concentration differences between the apparent focal point of groundwater discharge (with a concentration of 520 ± 80 dpm/L) estimated to be ˜17.7 km upstream from the downstream sample locations. During the same period, an average flow of 312,000 ± 70,000 m 3/day was determined from time-series measurements of radon at a fixed downstream location. Coincident current meter readings and a measured cross-section area allowed an independent assessment of the total stream discharge of 336,000 m 3/day. The radon-derived estimates thus indicate that >90% of the total flow is groundwater derived, consistent with the known characteristics of this waterway.

  16. Quantitative Rapid Assessment of Leukoaraiosis in CT : Comparison to Gold Standard MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanning, Uta; Sporns, Peter Bernhard; Schmidt, Rene; Niederstadt, Thomas; Minnerup, Jens; Bier, Georg; Knecht, Stefan; Kemmling, André

    2017-10-20

    The severity of white matter lesions (WML) is a risk factor of hemorrhage and predictor of clinical outcome after ischemic stroke; however, in contrast to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) reliable quantification for this surrogate marker is limited for computed tomography (CT), the leading stroke imaging technique. We aimed to present and evaluate a CT-based automated rater-independent method for quantification of microangiopathic white matter changes. Patients with suspected minor stroke (National Institutes of Health Stroke scale, NIHSS < 4) were screened for the analysis of non-contrast computerized tomography (NCCT) at admission and compared to follow-up MRI. The MRI-based WML volume and visual Fazekas scores were assessed as the gold standard reference. We employed a recently published probabilistic brain segmentation algorithm for CT images to determine the tissue-specific density of WM space. All voxel-wise densities were quantified in WM space and weighted according to partial probabilistic WM content. The resulting mean weighted density of WM space in NCCT, the surrogate of WML, was correlated with reference to MRI-based WML parameters. The process of CT-based tissue-specific segmentation was reliable in 79 cases with varying severity of microangiopathy. Voxel-wise weighted density within WM spaces showed a noticeable correlation (r = -0.65) with MRI-based WML volume. Particularly in patients with moderate or severe lesion load according to the visual Fazekas score the algorithm provided reliable prediction of MRI-based WML volume. Automated observer-independent quantification of voxel-wise WM density in CT significantly correlates with microangiopathic WM disease in gold standard MRI. This rapid surrogate of white matter lesion load in CT may support objective WML assessment and therapeutic decision-making during acute stroke triage.

  17. Rapid assessment of visual impairment in urban population of Delhi, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Noopur; Vashist, Praveen; Malhotra, Sumit; Senjam, Suraj Singh; Misra, Vasundhara; Bhardwaj, Amit

    2015-01-01

    To determine the prevalence, causes and associated demographic factors related to visual impairment amongst the urban population of New Delhi, India. A population-based, cross-sectional study was conducted in East Delhi district using cluster random sampling methodology. This Rapid Assessment of Visual Impairment (RAVI) survey involved examination of all individuals aged 40 years and above in 24 randomly selected clusters of the district. Visual acuity (VA) assessment and comprehensive ocular examination were done during the door-to-door survey. A questionnaire was used to collect personal and demographic information of the study population. Blindness and Visual Impairment was defined as presenting VA visual impairment. Of 2421 subjects enumerated, 2331 (96.3%) were available for ophthalmic examination. Among those examined, 49.3% were males. The prevalence of visual impairment (VI) in the study population, was 11.4% (95% C.I. 10.1, 12.7) and that of blindness was 1.2% (95% C.I. 0.8, 1.6). Uncorrected refractive error was the leading cause of VI accounting for 53.4% of all VI followed by cataract (33.8%). With multivariable logistic regression, the odds of having VI increased with age (OR = 24.6[95% C.I.: 14.9, 40.7]; p visual impairment is considerable in this region despite availability of adequate eye care facilities. Awareness generation and simple interventions like cataract surgery and provision of spectacles will help to eliminate the major causes of blindness and visual impairment in this region.

  18. Rapid assessment of trachoma in underserved population of Car-Nicobar Island, India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Praveen Vashist

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: To determine the burden of trachoma and its related risk factors amongst the native population of Car-Nicobar Island in India. METHODS: Rapid assessment for trachoma was conducted in ten villages of Car-Nicobar Island according to standard WHO guidelines. An average of 50 children aged 1-9 years were assessed clinically for signs of active trachoma and facial cleanliness in each village. Additionally, all adults above 15 years of age in these households were examined for evidence of trachomatous trichiasis and corneal opacity. Environmental risk factors contributing to trachoma like limited access to potable water & functional latrine, presence of animal pen and garbage within the Nicobari hut were also noted in all villages. RESULTS: Out of a total of fifteen villages in Car-Nicobar Island, ten villages were selected for trachoma survey depending on evidence of socio-developmental indicators like poverty and decreased access to water, sanitation and healthcare facilities. The total population of the selected clusters was 7277 in the ten villages. Overall, 251 of 516 children (48.6%;CI: 46.5-55.1 had evidence of follicular stage of trachoma and 11 children (2.1%;CI:1.0-3.4 had evidence of inflammatory stage of trachoma. Nearly 15%(CI:12.1-18.3 children were noted to have unclean faces in the ten villages. Trachomatous trichiasis was noted in 73 adults (1.0%;CI:0.8-1.2. The environmental sanitation was not found to be satisfactory in the surveyed villages mainly due to the co-habitance of Nicobari people with domestic animals like pigs, hens, goats, dogs, cats etc in most (96.4% of the households. CONCLUSION: Active trachoma and trachomatous trichiasis was observed in all the ten villages surveyed, wherein trachoma control measures are needed.

  19. Rapid Epidemiological Assessment of Onchocerciasis in a Tropical Semi-Urban Community, Enugu State, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JE Eyo

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: This study was carried out in Opi-Agu a tropical semi-urban autonomous community comprising of three villages in Enugu State, Nigeria, between the months of April and June 2010. It was designed to determine the prevalence of Onchocerca volvulus infection and assess the perception of the disease among the inhabitants of this community.Methods: A total number of 305 individuals comprising of 148 males and 157 females were ex­amined for various manifestations of onchocerciasis symptoms using rapid epidemiological assess­ment (REA method.Results: Out of this number, 119 (39.02% individuals were infected. Prevalence of infection among age groups and villages varied. Age group 41 yr and above had the highest (31.00% prevalence, while among the villages, Ogbozalla village ranked higher (45.71% than the other villages. Overall the prevalence of infection among the sexes revealed that males were more infected (43.24% than the females (35.03%. Lichenified onchodermatitis (LOD was the most prevalent (35.29% onchocercia­sis symptom among others identified in the area, while leopard skin (LS had the lowest (20.17% occurrence and blindness (0.00% which is the most devastating effect of O. volvulus infec­tion was not observed. Questionnaire responses from 410 individuals revealed that 34.8% respon­dent from Idi village and 28.1% from Ibeku village believed that O. volvulus infection occurs through poor personal hygiene. Bite of blackfly ranked least (10.6% among the respondent’s knowledge of the causes of onchocerciasis in Opi-Agu community.Conclusion: Opi-Agu community members had poor knowledge of onchocerciasis, the vector and of its etiologic organism. There is need for integration of community health education with mass chemo­therapy

  20. Validation of the rapid assessment procedure for loiasis (RAPLOA in the democratic republic of Congo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wanji Samuel

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A simple method called RAPLOA, to rapidly assess what proportion of people in a community are infected with L. loa and hence which communities are at high risk of severe adverse reactions following ivermectin treatment, was developed in Cameroon and Nigeria. The method needed further validation in other geographical and cultural contexts before its application in all endemic countries. The present study was designed to validate RAPLOA in two regions in the North East and South West of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Methods In each study region, villages were selected from different bio-ecological zones in order to cover a wide range of loiasis endemicity. In each selected community, 80 people above the age of 15 years were interviewed for a history of eye worm (migration of adult L. loa under the conjunctiva of the eye and parasitologically examined for the presence and intensity of L. loa infection. In total, 8100 individuals from 99 villages were enrolled into the study. Results The results confirmed the findings of the original RAPLOA study: i the eye worm phenomenon was well-known in all endemic areas, ii there was a clear relationship between the prevalence of eye worm history and the prevalence and intensity of L. loa microfilaraemia, and iii using a threshold of 40%, the prevalence of eye worm history was a sensitive and specific indicator of high-risk communities. Conclusion Following this successful validation, RAPLOA was recommended for the assessment of loiasis endemicity in areas targeted for ivermectin treatment by lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis control programmes.

  1. Fundamental understanding and integration of rapid thermal processing, PECVD, and screen printing for cost-effective, high-efficiency silicon photovoltaic devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doshi, Parag Mahendra

    The final hurdle preventing widespread application of photovoltaics is cost-effectiveness. Solar cell efficiencies in the laboratory have reached 24%, but industrial cells, constrained by low-cost, high-throughput processes, are limited to 10-15%. This thesis focuses on industrially relevant technologies such as rapid thermal processing (RTP), PECVD, and screen-printing to simplify and speed up cell processing yet maintain the key features that give high efficiencies in the laboratory. RTP utilizes tungsten-halogen and UV lamps as a source of high energy photons that induce thermal and photophysical effects which can significantly increase the kinetics of semiconductor processes such as diffusion, oxidation, and annealing. PECVD also serves as a promising low-cost candidate for SiN/SiOsb2 antireflection coatings and passivation. Finally, screen printing serves as a very high-throughput technology for contact formation as a low-cost alternative to photolithography. Integration of these technologies into a single cell fabrication sequence, however, revealed the susceptibility to low internal quantum efficiencies in the long and short wavelengths. For example, the inherent rapid cooling during RTP can degrade minority-carrier lifetime and long wavelength response. Lack of knowledge in tailoring RTP emitter diffusion profiles coupled with less than perfect PECVD surface passivation and parasitic SiN absorption was found to limit short wavelength response. Problems like these limited RTP cell efficiencies to only 15.4% prior to this thesis. Through a combination of fundamental understanding of device physics, materials and device characterization, modeling, and cell fabrication these losses were quantified and overcome in this thesis. An in-situ annealing cycle during RTP was optimized to prevent quenching-induced lifetime degradation and to preserve high long wavelength response. Measurement of SiN extinction coefficients to compute parasitic absorption, optimization

  2. Demand Response Advanced Controls Framework and Assessment of Enabling Technology Costs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Potter, Jennifer; Cappers, Peter

    2017-08-28

    The Demand Response Advanced Controls Framework and Assessment of Enabling Technology Costs research describe a variety of DR opportunities and the various bulk power system services they can provide. The bulk power system services are mapped to a generalized taxonomy of DR “service types”, which allows us to discuss DR opportunities and bulk power system services in fewer yet broader categories that share similar technological requirements which mainly drive DR enablement costs. The research presents a framework for the costs to automate DR and provides descriptions of the various elements that drive enablement costs. The report introduces the various DR enabling technologies and end-uses, identifies the various services that each can provide to the grid and provides the cost assessment for each enabling technology. In addition to a report, this research includes a Demand Response Advanced Controls Database and User Manual. They are intended to provide users with the data that underlies this research and instructions for how to use that database more effectively and efficiently.

  3. An Assessment of Disproportionate Costs in WFD: The Experience of Emilia-Romagna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Galioto

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available This study develops a methodology for the assessment of disproportionate costs according to the Water Framework Directive guidelines. The originality of the approach lies in the focus on the interdependencies between water bodies and the consideration of the multiple interactions between measures and pressures. However, the broad architecture of the study fits into a wider assessment procedure, already developed in recent studies. Specifically, a cost effectiveness analysis, implemented to select an efficient combination of measures, is integrated with a cost benefit analysis, which allows for the evaluation of the economic feasibility of the proposed actions. This methodology is applied to the Emilia-Romagna Region (Italy. In spite of the uncertainties in the estimations of costs and benefits, the study enables the identification of areas where disproportionate costs are more likely to occur. The results show that disproportionality tends to increase from foothill regions, where most of the functional uses of regional water resources are found, to plain areas, where the sources of pressure tend to be located. Finally, the study offers policy direction for the selection of measures in the case study region.

  4. Assessment of cost of illness for diabetic patients in South Indian tertiary care hospital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leelavathi D Acharya

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: The impact of diabetes on health-care expenditures has been increasingly recognized. To formulate an effective health planning and resource allocation, it is important to determine economic burden. Objective: The objective of this study is to assess the cost of illness (COI for diabetic inpatients with or without complications. Methodology: The study was conducted in the medicine wards of tertiary care hospital after ethical approval by the Institutional Ethical Committee. A total of 116 each diabetic with or without complications were selected and relevant data were collected using COI questionnaire and data were analyzed using SPSS version 20. Mann–Whitney U test is used to assess the statistical significant difference in the cost of treatment of diabetes alone and with complications'. P ≤ 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: Total COI includes the cost of treatment, investigation, consultation fee, intervention cost, transportation, days lost due to work, and hospitalization. The median of total COI for diabetic care without any complication was Rs. 22,456.97/- per patient per annum and with complication was Rs. 30,634.45/-. Patients on dialysis had to spend 7.3 times higher, and patients with cardiac intervention had to spend 7.4 times higher than diabetic patients without any complication. Conclusion: Treatment costs were many times higher in patients with complications and with cardiac and renal interventions. Complications in diabetic patients will increase the economic burden to family and also to the society.

  5. A rapid evidence assessment of immersive virtual reality as an adjunct therapy in acute pain management in clinical practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrett, Bernie; Taverner, Tarnia; Masinde, Wendy; Gromala, Diane; Shaw, Chris; Negraeff, Michael

    2014-12-01

    Immersive virtual reality (IVR) therapy has been explored as an adjunct therapy for the management of acute pain among children and adults for several conditions. Therapeutic approaches have traditionally involved medication and physiotherapy but such approaches are limited over time by their cost and side effects. This review seeks to critically evaluate the evidence for and against IVR as an adjunctive therapy for acute clinical pain applications. A rapid evidence assessment (REA) strategy was used. CINAHL, Medline, Web of Science, IEEE Xplore Digital Library, and the Cochrane Library databases were screened in from December 2012 to March 2013 to identify studies exploring IVR therapies as an intervention to assist in the management of pain. Main outcome measures were for acute pain and functional impairment. Seventeen research studies were included in total including 5 RCTs, 6 randomized crossover studies, 2 case series studies, and 4 single-patient case studies. This included a total of 337 patients. Of these studies only 4 had a low risk of bias. There was strong overall evidence for immediate and short-term pain reduction, whereas moderate evidence was found for short-term effects on physical function. Little evidence exists for longer-term benefits. IVR was not associated with any serious adverse events. This review found moderate evidence for the reduction of pain and functional impairment after IVR in patients with acute pain. Further high-quality studies are required for the conclusive judgment of its effectiveness in acute pain, to establish potential benefits for chronic pain, and for safety.

  6. Prevalence of refractive error and spectacle coverage in Zoba Ma'ekel Eritrea: a rapid assessment of refractive error.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Ving Fai; Mebrahtu, Goitom; Ramson, Prasidh; Wepo, Mary; Naidoo, Kovin S

    2013-06-01

    To determine the prevalence of refractive error and spectacle coverage in Zoba Ma'ekel, Eritrea in order to assist in planning for refractive services and blindness prevention strategies. A community-based cross-sectional study using multistage cluster sampling was conducted. A total of 3200 participants aged 15-50 years were enumerated and examined using the Rapid Assessment of Refractive Error (RARE) protocol. The response rate was 99.1%. The prevalence of refractive error was 6.4% (95% confidence interval [CI], 5.6-7.2%). Spectacle coverage for refractive error was 22.2% (95% CI 16.7-28.5%). It was higher among males than females (Fisher's exact test, p = 0.028), and highest in those who had completed secondary school (48.6%, 95% CI 31.9-65.6%) and those who resided in Asmara (Fisher's exact test, p < 0.002). The prevalence of presbyopia was 32.9% (95% CI 30.3-35.7%) with 94.9% correctable. Spectacle use for presbyopia was 9.9% (95% CI 7.2-13.4%), which was lowest in those with no formal schooling but highest in those who had completed secondary school (χ(2) test, p < 0.001) and those persons who resided in Asmara (Fisher's exact test, p < 0.001). Respondents expressed different barriers to uptake of services. A total of 128 subjects were aware of the problem but did not feel the need for consultation while 83 subjects stated they could not afford the cost of examination and spectacles. The study provides helpful findings to assist with the development of appropriate refractive service planning in Zoba Ma'ekel. Uncorrected refractive error is of public health importance and prompt measures are needed to address the problem.

  7. Rapid Assessment of Distribution of Wildlife and Human Activities for Prioritizing Conservation Actions in a Patagonian Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivas, Lorena F; Novaro, Andrés J; Funes, Martín C; Walker, R Susan

    2015-01-01

    Large landscapes encompassing reserves and areas with other human uses are necessary for conservation of many species. Generating information for conservation planning over such landscapes may be expensive and time-consuming, though resources for conservation are generally limited and conservation is often urgent. We developed a sign-based occupancy survey to help prioritize conservation interventions by simultaneously assessing the distribution of 3 species, the lesser rhea, guanaco, and mara, and their association with human activities in a 20,000-km2 landscape in the northern Patagonian steppe. We used a single-season occupancy model with spatial rather than temporal replication of surveys in order to reduce costs of multiple visits to sites. We used covariates related to detectability, environmental factors, and different human activities to identify the most plausible models of occupancy, and calculated importance weights of covariates from these models to evaluate relative impacts of human activities on each species. Abundance of goats had the strongest negative association with lesser rheas and guanacos, and road density with maras. With six months of fieldwork, our results provided initial hypotheses for adaptive conservation interventions for each species. Addressing high livestock densities for rheas and guanacos, poaching by urban hunters for all three species, and hunting by rural people for rheas are priorities for conservation in this landscape. Our methodology provided new insights into the responses of these species, although low detection probabilities for maras indicate that the sampling scheme should be altered for future monitoring of this species. This method may be adapted for any large landscape where a rapid, objective means for prioritizing conservation actions on multiple species is needed and data are scarce.

  8. Expert assessments of the cost of light water small modular reactors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdulla, Ahmed; Azevedo, Inês Lima; Morgan, M Granger

    2013-06-11

    Analysts and decision makers frequently want estimates of the cost of technologies that have yet to be developed or deployed. Small modular reactors (SMRs), which could become part of a portfolio of carbon-free energy sources, are one such technology. Existing estimates of likely SMR costs rely on problematic top-down approaches or bottom-up assessments that are proprietary. When done properly, expert elicitations can complement these approaches. We developed detailed technical descriptions of two SMR designs and then conduced elicitation interviews in which we obtained probabilistic judgments from 16 experts who are involved in, or have access to, engineering-economic assessments of SMR projects. Here, we report estimates of the overnight cost and construction duration for five reactor-deployment scenarios that involve a large reactor and two light water SMRs. Consistent with the uncertainty introduced by past cost overruns and construction delays, median estimates of the cost of new large plants vary by more than a factor of 2.5. Expert judgments about likely SMR costs display an even wider range. Median estimates for a 45 megawatts-electric (MWe) SMR range from $4,000 to $16,300/kWe and from $3,200 to $7,100/kWe for a 225-MWe SMR. Sources of disagreement are highlighted, exposing the thought processes of experts involved with SMR design. There was consensus that SMRs could be built and brought online about 2 y faster than large reactors. Experts identify more affordable unit cost, factory fabrication, and shorter construction schedules as factors that may make light water SMRs economically viable.

  9. sUAS for Rapid Pre-Storm Coastal Characterization and Vulnerability Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brodie, K. L.; Slocum, R. K.; Spore, N.

    2015-12-01

    Open coast beaches and surf-zones are dynamic three-dimensional environments that can evolve rapidly on the time-scale of hours in response to changing environmental conditions. Up-to-date knowledge about the pre-storm morphology of the coast can be instrumental in making accurate predictions about coastal change and damage during large storms like Hurricanes and Nor'Easters. For example, alongshore variations in the shape of ephemeral sandbars along the coastline can focus wave energy, subjecting different stretches of coastline to significantly higher waves. Variations in beach slope and width can also alter wave runup, causing higher wave-induced water levels which can cause overwash or inlet breaching. Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) offer a new capability to rapidly and inexpensively map vulnerable coastlines in advance of approaching storms. Here we present results from a prototype system that maps coastal topography and surf-zone morphology utilizing a multi-camera sensor. Structure-from-motion algorithms are used to generate topography and also constrain the trajectory of the sUAS. These data, in combination with mount boresight information, are used to rectify images from ocean-facing cameras. Images from all cameras are merged to generate a wide field of view allowing up to 5 minutes of continuous imagery time-series to be collected as the sUAS transits the coastline. Water imagery is then analyzed using wave-kinematics algorithms to provide information on surf-zone bathymetry. To assess this methodology, the absolute and relative accuracy of topographic data are evaluated in relation to simultaneously collected terrestrial lidar data. Ortho-rectification of water imagery is investigated using visible fixed targets installed in the surf-zone, and through comparison to stationary tower-based imagery. Future work will focus on evaluating how topographic and bathymetric data from this sUAS approach can be used to update forcing parameters in both

  10. Rapid assessment of Cascadia tsunamis from real-time PANGA GPS crustal deformation measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melbourne, T. I.; Santillan, M.; Miner, A.; Webb, F.

    2008-12-01

    volcanic unrest and landslide early warning, as well as critical infrastructure such as dams and bridges; - GPS-based rapid estimation from afar (central Washington) of strong ground motion from large Puget Sound or megathrust earthquakes that incapacitate local seismic networks. These measurements will then be transmitted in real-time to the seismic networks and state emergency managers to facilitate emergency response; - Training of undergraduate and graduate students in high-precision geodetic measurement techniques and analyses needed for future hazards assessment and mitigation. Although the construction phase of the real-time network is nearing completion, the data analysis aspect is still ongoing. An overview of the network, data analysis strategies, parameter estimation routines, and third- party data access options will be discussed.

  11. Phase 2 cost quality management assessment report for the Office of Technology Development (EM-50)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1994-08-01

    The Office of Environmental Management (EM) Head quarters (HQ) Cost Quality Management Assessment (CQMA) evaluated the practices of the Office of Technology Development (EM-50). The CQMA reviewed EM-50 management documents and reported results in the HQ CQMA Phase 1 report (March 1993). In this Assessment Phase, EM-50 practices were determined through interviews with staff members. The interviews were conducted from the end of September through early December 1993. EM-50 management documents (Phase 1) and practices (Phase 2) were compared to the Performance Objectives and Criteria (POCs) contained in the DOE/HQ Cost Quality Management Assessment Handbook. More detail on the CQMA process is provided in section 2. Interviewees are listed in appendix A. Documents reviewed during Phase 2 are listed in appendix B. Section 3 contains detailed observations, discussions, and recommendations. A summary of observations and recommendations is presented.

  12. Seismogeodetic monitoring techniques for tsunami and earthquake early warning and rapid assessment of structural damage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haase, J. S.; Bock, Y.; Saunders, J. K.; Goldberg, D.; Restrepo, J. I.

    2016-12-01

    As part of an effort to promote the use of NASA-sponsored Earth science information for disaster risk reduction, real-time high-rate seismogeodetic data are being incorporated into early warning and structural monitoring systems. Seismogeodesy combines seismic acceleration and GPS displacement measurements using a tightly-coupled Kalman filter to provide absolute estimates of seismic acceleration, velocity and displacement. Traditionally, the monitoring of earthquakes and tsunamis has been based on seismic networks for estimating earthquake magnitude and slip, and tide gauges and deep-ocean buoys for direct measurement of tsunami waves. Real-time seismogeodetic observations at subduction zones allow for more robust and rapid magnitude and slip estimation that increase warning time in the near-source region. A NASA-funded effort to utilize GPS and seismogeodesy in NOAA's Tsunami Warning Centers in Alaska and Hawaii integrates new modules for picking, locating, and estimating magnitudes and moment tensors for earthquakes into the USGS earthworm environment at the TWCs. In a related project, NASA supports the transition of this research to seismogeodetic tools for disaster preparedness, specifically by implementing GPS and low-cost MEMS accelerometers for structural monitoring in partnership with earthquake engineers. Real-time high-rate seismogeodetic structural monitoring has been implemented on two structures. The first is a parking garage at the Autonomous University of Baja California Faculty of Medicine in Mexicali, not far from the rupture of the 2011 Mw 7.2 El Mayor Cucapah earthquake enabled through a UCMexus collaboration. The second is the 8-story Geisel Library at University of California, San Diego (UCSD). The system has also been installed for several proof-of-concept experiments at the UCSD Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES) Large High Performance Outdoor Shake Table. We present MEMS-based seismogeodetic observations from the 10 June

  13. Assessing the costs of municipal solid waste treatment technologies in developing Asian countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aleluia, João; Ferrão, Paulo

    2017-11-01

    The management of municipal solid waste (MSW) is one of the main costs incurred by local authorities in developing countries. According to some estimates, these costs can account for up to 50% of city government budgets. It is therefore of importance that policymakers, urban planners and practitioners have an adequate understanding of what these costs consist of, from collection to final waste disposal. This article focuses on a specific stage of the MSW value chain, the treatment of waste, and it aims to identify cost patterns associated with the implementation and operation of waste treatment approaches in developing Asian countries. An analysis of the capital (CAPEX) and operational expenditures (OPEX) of a number of facilities located in countries of the region was conducted based on a database gathering nearly 100 projects and which served as basis for assessing four technology categories: composting, anaerobic digestion (AD), thermal treatment, and the production of refuse-derived fuel (RDF). Among these, it was found that the least costly to invest, asa function of the capacity to process waste, are composting facilities, with an average CAPEX per ton of 21,493 USD 2015 /ton. Conversely, at the upper end featured incineration plants, with an average CAPEX of 81,880 USD 2015 /ton, with this treatment approach ranking by and large as the most capital intensive of the four categories assessed. OPEX figures of the plants, normalized and analyzed in the form of OPEX/ton, were also found to be higher for incineration than for biological treatment methods, although on this component differences amongst the technology groups were less pronounced than those observed for CAPEX. While the results indicated the existence of distinct cost implications for available treatment approaches in the developing Asian context, the analysis also underscored the importance of understanding the local context asa means to properly identify the cost structure of each specific plant

  14. Programme Costing of a Physical Activity Programme in Primary Prevention: Should the Costs of Health Asset Assessment and Participatory Programme Development Count?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silke B. Wolfenstetter

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This analysis aims to discuss the implications of the “health asset concept”, introduced by the WHO, and the “investment for health model” requiring a “participatory approach” of cooperative programme development applied on a physical activity programme for socially disadvantaged women and to demonstrate the related costing issues as well as the relevant decision context. The costs of programme implementation amounted to €48,700. Adding the costs for developing the programme design of €48,800 results in total costs of €97,500; adding on top of that the costs of asset assessment running to €35,600 would total €133,100. These four different cost figures match four different types of potentially relevant decisions contexts. Depending on the decision context the total costs, and hence the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of a health promotion intervention, could differ considerably. Therefore, a detailed cost assessment and the identification of the decision context are of crucial importance.

  15. Environmental tipping points significantly affect the cost-benefit assessment of climate policies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yongyang; Judd, Kenneth L; Lenton, Timothy M; Lontzek, Thomas S; Narita, Daiju

    2015-04-14

    Most current cost-benefit analyses of climate change policies suggest an optimal global climate policy that is significantly less stringent than the level required to meet the internationally agreed 2 °C target. This is partly because the sum of estimated economic damage of climate change across various sectors, such as energy use and changes in agricultural production, results in only a small economic loss or even a small economic gain in the gross world product under predicted levels of climate change. However, those cost-benefit analyses rarely take account of environmental tipping points leading to abrupt and irreversible impacts on market and nonmarket goods and services, including those provided by the climate and by ecosystems. Here we show that including environmental tipping point impacts in a stochastic dynamic integrated assessment model profoundly alters cost-benefit assessment of global climate policy. The risk of a tipping point, even if it only has nonmarket impacts, could substantially increase the present optimal carbon tax. For example, a risk of only 5% loss in nonmarket goods that occurs with a 5% annual probability at 4 °C increase of the global surface temperature causes an immediate two-thirds increase in optimal carbon tax. If the tipping point also has a 5% impact on market goods, the optimal carbon tax increases by more than a factor of 3. Hence existing cost-benefit assessments of global climate policy may be significantly underestimating the needs for controlling climate change.

  16. Life Cycle Assessment and Life Cycle Cost Analysis of Magnesia Spinel Brick Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aysun Özkan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Sustainable use of natural resources in the production of construction materials has become a necessity both in Europe and Turkey. Construction products in Europe should have European Conformity (CE and Environmental Product Declaration (EPD, an independently verified and registered document in line with the European standard EN 15804. An EPD certificate can be created by performing a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA study. In this particular work, an LCA study was carried out for a refractory brick production for environmental assessment. In addition to the LCA, the Life Cycle Cost (LCC analysis was also applied for economic assessment. Firstly, a cradle-to-gate LCA was performed for one ton of magnesia spinel refractory brick. The CML IA method included in the licensed SimaPro 8.0.1 software was chosen to calculate impact categories (namely, abiotic depletion, global warming potential, acidification potential, eutrophication potential, human toxicity, ecotoxicity, ozone depletion potential, and photochemical oxidation potential. The LCC analysis was performed by developing a cost model for internal and external cost categories within the software. The results were supported by a sensitivity analysis. According to the results, the production of raw materials and the firing process in the magnesia spinel brick production were found to have several negative effects on the environment and were costly.

  17. An Assessment Of The Life Cycle Costs And GHG Emissions For Alternative Generation Technologies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Donnelly, C. Richard; Carias, Anibal; Ali, Mohammad; Wood, Nicholas; Morgenroth, Michael; Bridgeman, Andrew

    2010-09-15

    The best choices for supplying energy in a manner that can reduce emissions at a reasonable cost while still ensuring grid stability and reliability of supply is a matter of some debate. In this paper, a first principles analysis is performed to look at life-cycle costs and emissions as well as the amount of energy that is provided to the system from various low-emission alternatives, including wind, water, solar and nuclear power. These low-emission sources are then benchmarked against coal-fired energy production to establish a normalized assessment of the clean energy alternatives currently available.

  18. Industrial Cost-Benefit Assessment for Fault-tolerant Control Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thybo, C.; Blanke, M.

    1998-01-01

    against failure. The paper describes the assessments needed to find the right path for new industrial designs. The economic decisions in the design phase are discussed: cost of different failures, profits associated with available benefits, investments needed for development and life-time support....... The objective of this paper is to help, in the early product development state, to find the economical most suitable scheme. A salient result is that with increased customer awareness of total cost of ownership, new products can benefit significantly from applying fault tolerant control principles....

  19. Social Cost Assessment for Nuclear Fuel Cycle Options in the Republic of Korea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Joo, Ji-eun; Yim, Man-Sung [KAIST, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-10-15

    This paper will investigate the vast array of economic factors to estimate the true cost of the nuclear power. There are many studies addressing the external costs of energy production. However, it is only since the 1990s that the external costs of nuclear powered electricity production has been studied in detail. Each investigation has identified their own set of external costs and developed formulas and models using a variety of statistical techniques. The objective of this research is to broaden the scope of the parameters currently consider by adding new areas and expanding on the types of situations considered. Previously the approach to evaluating the external cost of nuclear power did not include various fuel cycle options and influencing parameters. Cost has always been a very important factor in decision-making, in particular for policy choices evaluating the alternative energy sources and electricity generation technologies. Assessment of external costs in support of decision-making should reflect timely consideration of important country specific policy objective. PWR-MOX and FR-Pyro are the best fuel cycle in parameter of environment impacts, but OT or OT-ER is proper than FR-Pyro in human beings. Using the OT fuel cycle is better than FR-Pyro to reduce the conflict cost. When energy supply is deficient, FR-Pyro fuel cycle stands longer than other fuel cycles. Proliferation resistance is shown as 'high' in all fuel cycles, so there are no difference between fuel cycles. When the severe accident occurs, FR-Pyro cycle is economical than other OT based fuel cycles.

  20. A Novel System for Rapid and Cost-Effective Production of Detection and Diagnostic Reagents of West Nile Virus in Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junyun He

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The threat of West Nile virus (WNV epidemics necessitates the development of a technology platform that can produce reagents to support detection and diagnosis rapidly and inexpensively. A plant expression system is attractive for protein production due to its low-cost and high-scalability nature and its ability to make appropriate posttranslational modifications. Here, we investigated the feasibility of using plants to produce two WNV detection and diagnostic reagents to address the current cost and scalability issues. We demonstrated that WNV DIII antigen and E16 monoclonal antibody are rapidly produced at high levels in two plant species and are easily purified. Furthermore, they are effective in identifying WNV and in detecting human IgM response to WNV infection. E16 mAb does not cross-react with other flaviviruses, therefore, is valuable for improving diagnostic accuracy. This study provides a proof of principle for using plants as a robust and economical system to produce diagnostic reagents for arboviruses.

  1. Assessment of Environmental and Economic Impacts of Vine-Growing Combining Life Cycle Assessment, Life Cycle Costing and Multicriterial Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giacomo Falcone

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The wine sector is going through a significant evolution dealing with the challenges of competition issues in international markets and with necessary commitments to sustainability improvement. In the wine supply chain, the agricultural phase represents a potential source of pollution and costs. From the farmers’ point of view, these contexts require them to be more attentive and find a compromise among environmental benefits, economic benefits, and costs linked to farming practices. This paper aims to make a sustainability assessment of different wine-growing scenarios located in Calabria (Southern Italy that combines conflicting insights, i.e., environmental and economic ones, by applying Life Cycle Assessment (LCA and Life Cycle Costing (LCC to identify the main hotspots and select the alternative scenarios closest to the ideal solution through the VIKOR multicriteria method. In particular, the latter allowed us to obtain synthetic indices for a two-dimensional sustainability assessment. Conventional practices associated to the espalier training system represent the best compromise from both environmental and economic points of view, due to the higher yield per hectare. The choices regarding Functional Unit (FU and indicators were shown to have a high influence on results.

  2. COMPARATIVE USABILITY ASSESSMENT OF REBA (RAPID ENTIRE BODY ASSESSMENT ERGONOMIC EVALUATION TOOL ON PAPER AND APP VERSIONS

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    Isabella de Souza Sierra

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Ferramentas para auxílio de análise ergonômica são frequentemente utilizadas quando há a necessidade de avaliação de riscos musculoesqueléticos no trabalho. Dessas ferramentas, uma das mais conhecidas é a REBA (Rapid Entire Body Assessment. Seu amplo uso fez com que suas formas de distribuição e aplicação fossem alteradas por vários autores, de forma a tentar encontrar a melhor maneira de aplicação. Inclusive, com o advento de celulares e tablets, foram feitas diversas versões em aplicativo da ferramenta. Pouco pode ser encontrado sobre a usabilidade desse método, ainda mais em qual versão é mais apropriado, em termos de usabilidade. Objetivou-se neste artigo realizar uma avaliação de usabilidade da ferramenta REBA em duas diferentes versões para verificar a influência que a usabilidade da ferramenta tem nos seus resultados. Acredita-se que qualquer tipo de ferramenta para uma avaliação ergonômica deve, de forma intrínseca, ser usável, pois sua usabilidade tem influência direta em sua confiabilidade e replicabilidade. Sendo assim, fez-se uma análise comparativa de usabilidade com a ferramenta em versão papel e aplicativos para celular com oito sujeitos para a verificação de tal usabilidade. Encontrou-se melhor usabilidade para o aplicativo, mas confiabilidade equiparada para as duas versões. Assim, constata-se que as duas podem ser igualmente usadas para avaliação REBA.

  3. Co-Morbidity, Mortality, Quality of Life and the Healthcare/Welfare/Social Costs of Disordered Sleep: A Rapid Review

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    Sergio Garbarino

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Sleep disorders are frequent (18%–23% and constitute a major risk factor for psychiatric, cardiovascular, metabolic or hormonal co-morbidity and mortality. Low social status or income, unemployment, life events such as divorce, negative lifestyle habits, and professional requirements (e.g., shift work are often associated with sleep problems. Sleep disorders affect the quality of life and impair both professional and non-professional activities. Excessive daytime drowsiness resulting from sleep disorders impairs efficiency and safety at work or on the road, and increases the risk of accidents. Poor sleep (either professional or voluntary has detrimental effects comparable to those of major sleep disorders, but is often neglected. The high incidence and direct/indirect healthcare and welfare costs of sleep disorders and poor sleep currently constitute a major medical problem. Investigation, monitoring and strategies are needed in order to prevent/reduce the effects of these disorders.

  4. Open microfluidic gel electrophoresis: Rapid and low cost separation and analysis of DNA at the nanoliter scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutzweiler, Ludwig; Gleichmann, Tobias; Tanguy, Laurent; Koltay, Peter; Zengerle, Roland; Riegger, Lutz

    2017-07-01

    Gel electrophoresis is one of the most applied and standardized tools for separation and analysis of macromolecules and their fragments in academic research and in industry. In this work we present a novel approach for conducting on-demand electrophoretic separations of DNA molecules in open microfluidic (OM) systems on planar polymer substrates. The approach combines advantages of slab gel, capillary- and chip-based methods offering low consumable costs (<0.1$) circumventing cost-intensive microfluidic chip fabrication, short process times (5 min per analysis) and high sensitivity (4 ng/μL dsDNA) combined with reasonable resolution (17 bases). The open microfluidic separation system comprises two opposing reservoirs of 2-4 μL in volume, a semi-contact written gel line acting as separation channel interconnecting the reservoirs and sample injected into the line via non-contact droplet dispensing and thus enabling the precise control of the injection plug and sample concentration. Evaporation is prevented by covering aqueous structures with PCR-grade mineral oil while maintaining surface temperature at 15°C. The liquid gel line exhibits a semi-circular cross section of adaptable width (∼200-600 μm) and height (∼30-80 μm) as well as a typical length of 15-55 mm. Layout of such liquid structures is adaptable on-demand not requiring time consuming and repetitive fabrication steps. The approach was successfully demonstrated by the separation of a standard label-free DNA ladder (100-1000 bp) at 100 V/cm via in-line staining and laser induced fluorescent end-point detection using an automated prototype. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  5. Rapid assessment of octocoral diversity and habitat on Saba Bank, Netherlands Antilles.

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    Peter J Etnoyer

    Full Text Available Saba Bank is a large submerged platform (approximately 2200 km(2, average depth 30 m, located 4 km southwest of Saba Island in Netherlands Antilles, Caribbean Sea. Ships traveling to and from oil terminals on nearby St. Eustatius routinely anchor on the Bank, damaging benthic megafauna. Gorgonian octocorals are vulnerable to anchor damage, and