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Sample records for emergent realist evaluation

  1. Improving the performance of community health workers in humanitarian emergencies: a realist evaluation protocol for the PIECES programme

    PubMed Central

    Gilmore, Brynne; Adams, Ben Jack; Bartoloni, Alex; Alhaydar, Bana; McAuliffe, Eilish; Raven, Joanna; Taegtmeyer, Miriam; Vallières, Frédérique

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Understanding what enhances the motivation and performance of community health workers (CHWs) in humanitarian emergencies represents a key research gap within the field of human resources for health. This paper presents the research protocol for the Performance ImprovEment of CHWs in Emergency Settings (PIECES) research programme. Enhancing Learning and Research in Humanitarian Action (ELRHA) funded the development of this protocol as part of their Health in Humanitarian Crises (R2HC) call (No.19839). PIECES aims to understand what factors improve the performance of CHWs in level III humanitarian emergencies. Methods and analysis The suggested protocol uses a realist evaluation with multiple cases across the 3 country sites: Turkey, Iraq and Lebanon. Working with International Medical Corps (IMC), an initial programme theory was elicited through literature and document reviews, semistructured interviews and focus groups with IMC programme managers and CHWs. Based on this initial theory, this protocol proposes a combination of semistructured interviews, life histories and critical incident narratives, surveys and latent variable modelling of key constructs to explain how contextual factors work to trigger mechanisms for specific outcomes relating to IMC's 300+ CHWs' performance. Participants will also include programme staff, CHWs and programme beneficiaries. Realist approaches will be used to better understand ‘what works, for whom and under what conditions’ for improving CHW performance within humanitarian contexts. Ethics and dissemination Trinity College Dublin's Health Policy and Management/Centre for Global Health Research Ethics Committee gave ethical approval for the protocol development phase. For the full research project, additional ethical approval will be sought from: Université St. Joseph (Lebanon), the Ethics Committee of the Ministry of Health in Baghdad (Iraq) and the Middle East Technical University (Turkey). Dissemination

  2. Realist evaluation: an immanent critique.

    PubMed

    Porter, Sam

    2015-10-01

    This paper critically analyses realist evaluation, focussing on its primary analytical concepts: mechanisms, contexts, and outcomes. Noting that nursing investigators have had difficulty in operationalizing the concepts of mechanism and context, it is argued that their confusion is at least partially the result of ambiguities, inconsistencies, and contradictions in the realist evaluation model. Problematic issues include the adoption of empiricist and idealist positions, oscillation between determinism and voluntarism, subsumption of agency under structure, and categorical confusion between context and mechanism. In relation to outcomes, it is argued that realist evaluation's adoption of the fact/value distinction prevents it from taking into account the concerns of those affected by interventions. The aim of the paper is to use these immanent critiques of realist evaluation to construct an internally consistent realist approach to evaluation that is more amenable to being operationalized by nursing researchers. PMID:26392234

  3. Faculty Development for Educators: A Realist Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sorinola, Olanrewaju O.; Thistlethwaite, Jill; Davies, David; Peile, Ed

    2015-01-01

    The effectiveness of faculty development (FD) activities for educators in UK medical schools remains underexplored. This study used a realist approach to evaluate FD and to test the hypothesis that motivation, engagement and perception are key mechanisms of effective FD activities. The authors observed and interviewed 33 course participants at one…

  4. Emergent properties from organisms to ecosystems: towards a realistic approach

    PubMed Central

    Ponge, Jean-François

    2005-01-01

    More realistic approaches are needed to understand the complexity of ecological systems. Emergent properties of real systems can be used as a basis for a new, neither reductionist nor holistic, approach. Three systems, termed here BUBBLEs, WAVEs and CRYSTALs, have been identified as exhibiting emergent properties. They are non-hierarchical assemblages of individual components, with amplification and connectedness being two main principles that govern their build-up, maintenance and mutual relationships. Examples from various fields of biological and ecological science are referred to, ranging from individual organisms to landscapes. PMID:16094806

  5. A realistic evaluation: the case of protocol-based care

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background 'Protocol based care' was envisioned by policy makers as a mechanism for delivering on the service improvement agenda in England. Realistic evaluation is an increasingly popular approach, but few published examples exist, particularly in implementation research. To fill this gap, within this paper we describe the application of a realistic evaluation approach to the study of protocol-based care, whilst sharing findings of relevance about standardising care through the use of protocols, guidelines, and pathways. Methods Situated between positivism and relativism, realistic evaluation is concerned with the identification of underlying causal mechanisms, how they work, and under what conditions. Fundamentally it focuses attention on finding out what works, for whom, how, and in what circumstances. Results In this research, we were interested in understanding the relationships between the type and nature of particular approaches to protocol-based care (mechanisms), within different clinical settings (context), and what impacts this resulted in (outcomes). An evidence review using the principles of realist synthesis resulted in a number of propositions, i.e., context, mechanism, and outcome threads (CMOs). These propositions were then 'tested' through multiple case studies, using multiple methods including non-participant observation, interviews, and document analysis through an iterative analysis process. The initial propositions (conjectured CMOs) only partially corresponded to the findings that emerged during analysis. From the iterative analysis process of scrutinising mechanisms, context, and outcomes we were able to draw out some theoretically generalisable features about what works, for whom, how, and what circumstances in relation to the use of standardised care approaches (refined CMOs). Conclusions As one of the first studies to apply realistic evaluation in implementation research, it was a good fit, particularly given the growing emphasis on

  6. Remembering and Celebrating a Realistic Evaluation Visionary

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patton, Michael Quinn

    2013-01-01

    In this article, Michael Quinn Patton pays tribute to Carol Hirschon Weiss, a woman who brought passion to evaluation use. She also brought attention to it, publishing the first article on evaluation in 1967. Weiss' many contributions have come into evaluation currency and overtaken formerly taken-for-granted assumptions. Indeed, her insights…

  7. The use and limitation of realistic evaluation as a tool for evidence-based practice: a critical realist perspective.

    PubMed

    Porter, Sam; O'Halloran, Peter

    2012-03-01

    The use and limitation of realistic evaluation as a tool for evidence-based practice: a critical realist perspective In this paper, we assess realistic evaluation's articulation with evidence-based practice (EBP) from the perspective of critical realism. We argue that the adoption by realistic evaluation of a realist causal ontology means that it is better placed to explain complex healthcare interventions than the traditional method used by EBP, the randomized controlled trial (RCT). However, we do not conclude from this that the use of RCTs is without merit, arguing that it is possible to use both methods in combination under the rubric of realist theory. More negatively, we contend that the rejection of critical theory and utopianism by realistic evaluation in favour of the pragmatism of piecemeal social engineering means that it is vulnerable to accusations that it promotes technocratic interpretations of human problems. We conclude that, insofar as realistic evaluation adheres to the ontology of critical realism, it provides a sound contribution to EBP, but insofar as it rejects the critical turn of Bhaskar's realism, it replicates the technocratic tendencies inherent in EBP. PMID:22212367

  8. A realist evaluation of the management of a well- performing regional hospital in Ghana

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Realist evaluation offers an interesting approach to evaluation of interventions in complex settings, but has been little applied in health care. We report on a realist case study of a well performing hospital in Ghana and show how such a realist evaluation design can help to overcome the limited external validity of a traditional case study. Methods We developed a realist evaluation framework for hypothesis formulation, data collection, data analysis and synthesis of the findings. Focusing on the role of human resource management in hospital performance, we formulated our hypothesis around the high commitment management concept. Mixed methods were used in data collection, including individual and group interviews, observations and document reviews. Results We found that the human resource management approach (the actual intervention) included induction of new staff, training and personal development, good communication and information sharing, and decentralised decision-making. We identified 3 additional practices: ensuring optimal physical working conditions, access to top managers and managers' involvement on the work floor. Teamwork, recognition and trust emerged as key elements of the organisational climate. Interviewees reported high levels of organisational commitment. The analysis unearthed perceived organisational support and reciprocity as underlying mechanisms that link the management practices with commitment. Methodologically, we found that realist evaluation can be fruitfully used to develop detailed case studies that analyse how management interventions work and in which conditions. Analysing the links between intervention, mechanism and outcome increases the explaining power, while identification of essential context elements improves the usefulness of the findings for decision-makers in other settings (external validity). We also identified a number of practical difficulties and priorities for further methodological development

  9. Considerations for realistic ECCS evaluation methodology for LWRs

    SciTech Connect

    Rohatgi, U.S.; Saha, P.; Chexal, V.K.

    1985-01-01

    This paper identifies the various phenomena which govern the course of large and small break LOCAs in LWRs, and affect the key parameters such as Peak Clad Temperature (PCT) and timing of the end of blowdown, beginning of reflood, PCT, and complete quench. A review of the best-estimate models and correlations for these phenomena in the current literature has been presented. Finally, a set of models have been recommended which may be incorporated in a present best-estimate code such as TRAC or RELAP5 in order to develop a realistic ECCS evaluation methodology for future LWRs and have also been compared with the requirements of current ECCS evaluation methodology as outlined in Appendix K of 10CFR50. 58 refs.

  10. Towards Modeling Realistic Mobility for Performance Evaluations in MANET

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aravind, Alex; Tahir, Hassan

    Simulation modeling plays crucial role in conducting research on complex dynamic systems like mobile ad hoc networks and often the only way. Simulation has been successfully applied in MANET for more than two decades. In several recent studies, it is observed that the credibility of the simulation results in the field has decreased while the use of simulation has steadily increased. Part of this credibility crisis has been attributed to the simulation of mobility of the nodes in the system. Mobility has such a fundamental influence on the behavior and performance of mobile ad hoc networks. Accurate modeling and knowledge of mobility of the nodes in the system is not only helpful but also essential for the understanding and interpretation of the performance of the system under study. Several ideas, mostly in isolation, have been proposed in the literature to infuse realism in the mobility of nodes. In this paper, we attempt a holistic analysis of creating realistic mobility models and then demonstrate creation and analysis of realistic mobility models using a software tool we have developed. Using our software tool, desired mobility of the nodes in the system can be specified, generated, analyzed, and then the trace can be exported to be used in the performance studies of proposed algorithms or systems.

  11. Evaluation of health promotion in schools: a realistic evaluation approach using mixed methods

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Schools are key settings for health promotion (HP) but the development of suitable approaches for evaluating HP in schools is still a major topic of discussion. This article presents a research protocol of a program developed to evaluate HP. After reviewing HP evaluation issues, the various possible approaches are analyzed and the importance of a realistic evaluation framework and a mixed methods (MM) design are demonstrated. Methods/Design The design is based on a systemic approach to evaluation, taking into account the mechanisms, context and outcomes, as defined in realistic evaluation, adjusted to our own French context using an MM approach. The characteristics of the design are illustrated through the evaluation of a nationwide HP program in French primary schools designed to enhance children's social, emotional and physical health by improving teachers' HP practices and promoting a healthy school environment. An embedded MM design is used in which a qualitative data set plays a supportive, secondary role in a study based primarily on a different quantitative data set. The way the qualitative and quantitative approaches are combined through the entire evaluation framework is detailed. Discussion This study is a contribution towards the development of suitable approaches for evaluating HP programs in schools. The systemic approach of the evaluation carried out in this research is appropriate since it takes account of the limitations of traditional evaluation approaches and considers suggestions made by the HP research community. PMID:20109202

  12. Realist complex intervention science: Applying realist principles across all phases of the Medical Research Council framework for developing and evaluating complex interventions

    PubMed Central

    Fletcher, Adam; Jamal, Farah; Moore, Graham; Evans, Rhiannon E.; Murphy, Simon; Bonell, Chris

    2016-01-01

    The integration of realist evaluation principles within randomised controlled trials (‘realist RCTs’) enables evaluations of complex interventions to answer questions about what works, for whom and under what circumstances. This allows evaluators to better develop and refine mid-level programme theories. However, this is only one phase in the process of developing and evaluating complex interventions. We describe and exemplify how social scientists can integrate realist principles across all phases of the Medical Research Council framework. Intervention development, modelling, and feasibility and pilot studies need to theorise the contextual conditions necessary for intervention mechanisms to be activated. Where interventions are scaled up and translated into routine practice, realist principles also have much to offer in facilitating knowledge about longer-term sustainability, benefits and harms. Integrating a realist approach across all phases of complex intervention science is vital for considering the feasibility and likely effects of interventions for different localities and population subgroups. PMID:27478401

  13. Evaluating Action Learning: A Critical Realist Complex Network Theory Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burgoyne, John G.

    2010-01-01

    This largely theoretical paper will argue the case for the usefulness of applying network and complex adaptive systems theory to an understanding of action learning and the challenge it is evaluating. This approach, it will be argued, is particularly helpful in the context of improving capability in dealing with wicked problems spread around…

  14. Basic requirements for realistic and unprejudiced evaluation of musical instruments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wogram, Klaus

    2003-10-01

    In the past, the laboratory of musical acoustics of the PTB had to develop methods of subjective and objective evaluations of all kinds of musical instruments for a competition which was launched by the German ministry of economics. For this work the following questions had to be answered: (1) What makes a musical instrument play well from physical and subjective viewpoints? (2) How does the musician play the instrument, and what does he think when playing? (3) What is the influence of room acoustical parameters on sound quality? (4) How strong is the influence of prejudices concerning the brand, color, and type? (5) How can we measure the main acoustical parameters objectively? (6) What is the correlation between objective and subjective results? This presentation will give answers to these questions based on 10 years of experience with such evaluations by the author.

  15. A realist evaluation of the role of communities of practice in changing healthcare practice

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Healthcare organisations seeking to manage knowledge and improve organisational performance are increasingly investing in communities of practice (CoPs). Such investments are being made in the absence of empirical evidence demonstrating the impact of CoPs in improving the delivery of healthcare. A realist evaluation is proposed to address this knowledge gap. Underpinned by the principle that outcomes are determined by the context in which an intervention is implemented, a realist evaluation is well suited to understand the role of CoPs in improving healthcare practice. By applying a realist approach, this study will explore the following questions: What outcomes do CoPs achieve in healthcare? Do these outcomes translate into improved practice in healthcare? What are the contexts and mechanisms by which CoPs improve healthcare? Methods The realist evaluation will be conducted by developing, testing, and refining theories on how, why, and when CoPs improve healthcare practice. When collecting data, context will be defined as the setting in which the CoP operates; mechanisms will be the factors and resources that the community offers to influence a change in behaviour or action; and outcomes will be defined as a change in behaviour or work practice that occurs as a result of accessing resources provided by the CoP. Discussion Realist evaluation is being used increasingly to study social interventions where context plays an important role in determining outcomes. This study further enhances the value of realist evaluations by incorporating a social network analysis component to quantify the structural context associated with CoPs. By identifying key mechanisms and contexts that optimise the effectiveness of CoPs, this study will contribute to creating a framework that will guide future establishment and evaluation of CoPs in healthcare. PMID:21600057

  16. Protocol—the RAMESES II study: developing guidance and reporting standards for realist evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Greenhalgh, Trisha; Wong, Geoff; Jagosh, Justin; Greenhalgh, Joanne; Manzano, Ana; Westhorp, Gill; Pawson, Ray

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Realist evaluation is an increasingly popular methodology in health services research. For realist evaluations (RE) this project aims to: develop quality and reporting standards and training materials; build capacity for undertaking and critically evaluating them; produce resources and training materials for lay participants, and those seeking to involve them. Methods To achieve our aims, we will: (1) Establish management and governance infrastructure; (2) Recruit an interdisciplinary Delphi panel of 35 participants with diverse relevant experience of RE; (3) Summarise current literature and expert opinion on best practice in RE; (4) Run an online Delphi panel to generate and refine items for quality and reporting standards; (5) Capture ‘real world’ experiences and challenges of RE—for example, by providing ongoing support to realist evaluations, hosting the RAMESES JISCmail list on realist research, and feeding problems and insights from these into the deliberations of the Delphi panel; (6) Produce quality and reporting standards; (7) Collate examples of the learning and training needs of researchers, students, reviewers and lay members in relation to RE; (8) Develop, deliver and evaluate training materials for RE and deliver training workshops; and (9) Develop and evaluate information and resources for patients and other lay participants in RE (eg, draft template information sheets and model consent forms) and; (10) Disseminate training materials and other resources. Planned outputs: (1) Quality and reporting standards and training materials for RE. (2) Methodological support for RE. (3) Increase in capacity to support and evaluate RE. (4) Accessible, plain-English resources for patients and the public participating in RE. Discussion The realist evaluation is a relatively new approach to evaluation and its overall place in the is not yet fully established. As with all primary research approaches, guidance on quality assurance and uniform

  17. Realist Evaluation in Wraparound: A New Approach in Social Work Evidence-Based Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kazi, Mansoor A. F.; Pagkos, Brian; Milch, Heidi A.

    2011-01-01

    Objectives: The purpose of this study was to develop a realist evaluation paradigm in social work evidence-based practice. Method: Wraparound (at Gateway-Longview Inc., New York) used a reliable outcome measure and an electronic database to systematically collect and analyze data on the interventions, the client demographics and circumstances, and…

  18. A New Realistic Evaluation Analysis Method: Linked Coding of Context, Mechanism, and Outcome Relationships

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jackson, Suzanne F.; Kolla, Gillian

    2012-01-01

    In attempting to use a realistic evaluation approach to explore the role of Community Parents in early parenting programs in Toronto, a novel technique was developed to analyze the links between contexts (C), mechanisms (M) and outcomes (O) directly from experienced practitioner interviews. Rather than coding the interviews into themes in terms of…

  19. Lessons learned in using realist evaluation to assess maternal and newborn health programming in rural Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Adams, Alayne; Sedalia, Saroj; McNab, Shanon; Sarker, Malabika

    2016-03-01

    Realist evaluation furnishes valuable insight to public health practitioners and policy makers about how and why interventions work or don't work. Moving beyond binary measures of success or failure, it provides a systematic approach to understanding what goes on in the 'Black Box' and how implementation decisions in real life contexts can affect intervention effectiveness. This paper reflects on an experience in applying the tenets of realist evaluation to identify optimal implementation strategies for scale-up of Maternal and Newborn Health (MNH) programmes in rural Bangladesh. Supported by UNICEF, the three MNH programmes under consideration employed different implementation models to deliver similar services and meet similar MNH goals. Programme targets included adoption of recommended antenatal, post-natal and essential newborn care practices; health systems strengthening through improved referral, accountability and administrative systems, and increased community knowledge. Drawing on focused examples from this research, seven steps for operationalizing the realist evaluation approach are offered, while emphasizing the need to iterate and innovate in terms of methods and analysis strategies. The paper concludes by reflecting on lessons learned in applying realist evaluation, and the unique insights it yields regarding implementation strategies for successful MNH programming. PMID:26104820

  20. How Do You Modernize a Health Service? A Realist Evaluation of Whole-Scale Transformation in London

    PubMed Central

    Greenhalgh, Trisha; Humphrey, Charlotte; Hughes, Jane; Macfarlane, Fraser; Butler, Ceri; Pawson, Ray

    2009-01-01

    Context: Large-scale, whole-systems interventions in health care require imaginative approaches to evaluation that go beyond assessing progress against predefined goals and milestones. This project evaluated a major change effort in inner London, funded by a charitable donation of approximately $21 million, which spanned four large health care organizations, covered three services (stroke, kidney, and sexual health), and sought to “modernize” these services with a view to making health care more efficient, effective, and patient centered. Methods: This organizational case study draws on the principles of realist evaluation, a largely qualitative approach that is centrally concerned with testing and refining program theories by exploring the complex and dynamic interaction among context, mechanism, and outcome. This approach used multiple data sources and methods in a pragmatic and reflexive manner to build a picture of the case and follow its fortunes over the three-year study period. The methods included ethnographic observation, semistructured interviews, and scrutiny of documents and other contemporaneous materials. As well as providing ongoing formative feedback to the change teams in specific areas of activity, we undertook a more abstract, interpretive analysis, which explored the context-mechanism-outcome relationship using the guiding question “what works, for whom, under what circumstances?” Findings: In this example of large-scale service transformation, numerous projects and subprojects emerged, fed into one another, and evolved over time. Six broad mechanisms appeared to be driving the efforts of change agents: integrating services across providers, finding and using evidence, involving service users in the modernization effort, supporting self-care, developing the workforce, and extending the range of services. Within each of these mechanisms, different teams chose widely differing approaches and met with differing success. The realist analysis

  1. Realistic numerical simulations of solar convection: emerging flux, pores, and Stokes spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgobiani, D.; Stein, R.; Nordlund, A.

    2012-12-01

    We report on magneto-convection simulations of magnetic flux emerging through the upper layers of the solar convection zone into the photosphere. Simulations by Georgobiani, Stein and Nordlund start from minimally structured, uniform, untwisted horizontal field advected into the computational domain by supergranule scale inflows at 20 Mm depth. At the opposite extreme, simulations by Cheung (2007, 2008, 2011) start with a coherent flux tube inserted into or forced into the bottom of the computational domain. Several robust results have emerged from the comparison of results from these two very different initial states. First, rising magnetic flux gets deformed into undulating, serpentine shapes by the influence of the convective up- and down-flows. The flux develops fine structure and appears at the surface first as a "pepper and salt" pattern of mixed polarity. Where magnetic flux approaches the surface, granules become darker and elongated in the direction of the field. Subsequently, the underlying large scale magnetic structures make the field collect into unipolar regions. Magneto-convection produces a complex, small-scale magnetic field topology, whatever the initial state. A heirarchy of magnetic loops corresponding to the different scales of convective motions are produced. Vertical vortex tubes form at intergranule lane vertices which can lead to tornado-like magnetic fields in the photosphere. Gradients in field strength and velocity produce asymmetric Stokes spectra. Where emerging Omega loops leave behind nearly vertical legs, long lived pores can spontaneously form. The field in the pores first becomes concentrated and evacuated near the surface and the evacuated flux concentration then extends downward.

  2. How does capacity building of health managers work? A realist evaluation study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Marchal, Bruno; Hoeree, Tom; Devadasan, Narayanan; Macq, Jean; Kegels, Guy; Criel, Bart

    2012-01-01

    Introduction There has been a lot of attention on the role of human resource management interventions to improve delivery of health services in low- and middle-income countries. However, studies on this subject are few due to limited research on implementation of programmes and methodological difficulties in conducting experimental studies on human resource interventions. The authors present the protocol of an evaluation of a district-level capacity-building intervention to identify the determinants of performance of health workers in managerial positions and to understand how changes (if any) are brought about. Methods and analysis The aim of this study is to understand how capacity building works. The authors will use realist evaluation to evaluate an intervention in Karnataka, India. The intervention is a capacity-building programme that seeks to improve management capacities of health managers at district and subdistrict levels through periodic classroom-based teaching and mentoring support at the workplace. The authors conducted interviews and reviewed literature on capacity building in health to draw out the programme theory of the intervention. Based on this, the authors formulated hypothetical pathways connecting the expected outcomes of the intervention (planning and supervision) to the inputs (contact classes and mentoring). The authors prepared a questionnaire to assess elements of the programme theory—organisational culture, self-efficacy and supervision. The authors shall conduct a survey among health managers as well as collect qualitative data through interviews with participants and non-participants selected purposively based on their planning and supervision performance. The authors will construct explanations in the form of context–mechanism–outcome configurations from the results. This will be iterative and the authors will use a realist evaluation framework to refine the explanatory theories that are based on the findings to explain and

  3. Conditions for production of interdisciplinary teamwork outcomes in oncology teams: protocol for a realist evaluation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Interdisciplinary teamwork (ITW) is designed to promote the active participation of several disciplines in delivering comprehensive cancer care to patients. ITW provides mechanisms to support continuous communication among care providers, optimize professionals’ participation in clinical decision-making within and across disciplines, and foster care coordination along the cancer trajectory. However, ITW mechanisms are not activated optimally by all teams, resulting in a gap between desired outcomes of ITW and actual outcomes observed. The aim of the present study is to identify the conditions underlying outcome production by ITW in local oncology teams. Methods This retrospective multiple case study will draw upon realist evaluation principles to explore associations among context, mechanisms and outcomes (CMO). The cases are nine interdisciplinary cancer teams that participated in a previous study evaluating ITW outcomes. Qualitative data sources will be used to construct a picture of CMO associations in each case. For data collection, reflexive focus groups will be held to capture patients’ and professionals’ perspectives on ITW, using the guiding question, ‘What works, for whom, and under what circumstances?’ Intra-case analysis will be used to trace associations between context, ITW mechanisms, and patient outcomes. Inter-case analysis will be used to compare the different cases’ CMO associations for a better understanding of the phenomenon under study. Discussion This multiple case study will use realist evaluation principles to draw lessons about how certain contexts are more or less likely to produce particular outcomes. The results will make it possible to target more specifically the actions required to optimize structures and to activate the best mechanisms to meet the needs of cancer patients. This project could also contribute significantly to the development of improved research methods for conducting realist evaluations of

  4. Emergency Exercise Participation and Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Julie; Black, Lynette; Williams, Linda

    2012-01-01

    Extension is uniquely positioned to participate in emergency exercises, formally or informally, with the goal of engaging community members in emergency and disaster preparedness. With their knowledge of community needs, Extension personnel are valuable resources and can assist emergency managers in the process of identifying local risks and…

  5. The management challenge for household waste in emerging economies like Brazil: realistic source separation and activation of reverse logistics.

    PubMed

    Fehr, M

    2014-09-01

    Business opportunities in the household waste sector in emerging economies still evolve around the activities of bulk collection and tipping with an open material balance. This research, conducted in Brazil, pursued the objective of shifting opportunities from tipping to reverse logistics in order to close the balance. To do this, it illustrated how specific knowledge of sorted waste composition and reverse logistics operations can be used to determine realistic temporal and quantitative landfill diversion targets in an emerging economy context. Experimentation constructed and confirmed the recycling trilogy that consists of source separation, collection infrastructure and reverse logistics. The study on source separation demonstrated the vital difference between raw and sorted waste compositions. Raw waste contained 70% biodegradable and 30% inert matter. Source separation produced 47% biodegradable, 20% inert and 33% mixed material. The study on collection infrastructure developed the necessary receiving facilities. The study on reverse logistics identified private operators capable of collecting and processing all separated inert items. Recycling activities for biodegradable material were scarce and erratic. Only farmers would take the material as animal feed. No composting initiatives existed. The management challenge was identified as stimulating these activities in order to complete the trilogy and divert the 47% source-separated biodegradable discards from the landfills. PMID:24990590

  6. Online Assessment, Measurement and Evaluation: Emerging Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, David, Ed.; Hricko, Mary, Ed.; Howell, Scott, Ed.

    2006-01-01

    "Online Assessment, Measurement and Evaluation: Emerging Practices" provides a view of the possibilities and challenges facing online educators and evaluators in the 21st Century. As technology evolves and online measurement and assessment follow, "Online Assessment, Measurement and Evaluation: Emerging Practices" uses established evaluation…

  7. The power of the context map: Designing realistic outcome evaluation strategies and other unanticipated benefits.

    PubMed

    Renger, Ralph; Foltysova, Jirina; Becker, Karin L; Souvannasacd, Eric

    2015-10-01

    Developing a feasible evaluation plan is challenging when multiple activities, often sponsored by multiple agencies, work together toward a common goal. Often, resources are limited and not every agency's interest can be represented in the final evaluation plan. The article illustrates how the Antecedent Target Measurement (ATM) approach to logic modeling was adapted to meet this challenge. The key adaptation is the context map generated in the first step of the ATM approach. The context map makes visually explicit many of the underlying conditions contributing to a problem as possible. The article also shares how a prioritization matrix can assist the evaluator in filtering through the context map to prioritize the outcomes to be included in the final evaluation plan as well as creating realistic outcomes. This transparent prioritization process can be especially helpful in managing evaluation expectations of multiple agencies with competing interests. Additional strategic planning benefits of the context map include pinpointing redundancies caused by overlapping collaborative efforts, identifying gaps in coverage, and assisting the coordination of multiple stakeholders. PMID:26036610

  8. Mechanisms for achieving adolescent-friendly services in Ecuador: a realist evaluation approach

    PubMed Central

    Goicolea, Isabel; Coe, Anna-Britt; Hurtig, Anna-Karin; San Sebastian, Miguel

    2012-01-01

    Background Despite evidence showing that adolescent-friendly health services (AFSs) increase young people's access to these services, health systems across the world are failing to integrate this approach. In Latin America, policies aimed at strengthening AFS abound. However, such services are offered only in a limited number of sites, and providers’ attitudes and respect for confidentiality have not been addressed to a sufficient extent. Methods The aim of this study was to explore the mechanisms that triggered the transformation of an ‘ordinary’ health care facility into an AFS in Ecuador. For this purpose, a realist evaluation approach was used in order to analyse three well-functioning AFSs. Information was gathered at the national level and from each of the settings including: (i) statistical information and unpublished reports; (ii) in-depth interviews and focus group discussions with policy makers, health care providers, users and adolescents participating in youth organisations and (iii) observations at the health care facilities. Thematic analysis was carried out, driven by the realist evaluation approach, namely exploring the connections between mechanisms, contexts and outcomes. Results The results highlighted that the development of the AFSs was mediated by four mechanisms: grounded self-confidence in trying new things, legitimacy, a transformative process and an integral approach to adolescents. Along this process, contextual factors at the national and institutional levels were further explored. Conclusion The Ministry of Health of Ecuador, based on the New Guidelines for Comprehensive Care of Adolescent Health, has started the scaling up of AFSs. Our research points towards the need to recognise and incorporate these mechanisms as part of the implementation strategy from the very beginning of the process. Although contextually limited to Ecuador, many mechanisms and good practices in these AFS may be relevant to the Latin American setting and

  9. The Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols Study: Statistical Methods

    PubMed Central

    Coull, Brent A.; Wellenius, Gregory A.; Gonzalez-Flecha, Beatriz; Diaz, Edgar; Koutrakis, Petros; Godleski, John J.

    2013-01-01

    The Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols (TERESA) study involved withdrawal, aging, and atmospheric transformation of emissions of three coal-fired power plants. Toxicological evaluations were carried out in rats exposed to different emission scenarios with extensive exposure characterization. Data generated had multiple levels of resolution: exposure, scenario and constituent chemical composition. Here, we outline a multilayered approach to analyze the associations between exposure and health effects beginning with standard ANOVA models that treat exposure as a categorical variable. The model assessed differences in exposure effects across scenarios (by plant). To assess unadjusted associations between pollutant concentrations and health, univariate analyses were conducted using the difference between the response means under exposed and control conditions and a single constituent concentration as the predictor. Then, a novel multivariate analysis of exposure composition and health was used based on random forests, a recent extension of classification and regression trees that were applied to the outcome differences. For each exposure constituent, this approach yielded a nonparametric measure of the importance of that constituent in predicting differences in response on a given day, controlling for the other measured constituent concentrations in the model. Finally, an R2 analysis compared the relative importance of exposure scenario, plant, and constituent concentrations on each outcome. Peak expiratory flow is used to demonstrate how the multiple levels of the analysis complement each other to assess constituents most strongly associated with health effects. PMID:21913820

  10. How do primary health care teams learn to integrate intimate partner violence (IPV) management? A realist evaluation protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Despite the existence of ample literature dealing, on the one hand, with the integration of innovations within health systems and team learning, and, on the other hand, with different aspects of the detection and management of intimate partner violence (IPV) within healthcare facilities, research that explores how health innovations that go beyond biomedical issues—such as IPV management—get integrated into health systems, and that focuses on healthcare teams’ learning processes is, to the best of our knowledge, very scarce if not absent. This realist evaluation protocol aims to ascertain: why, how, and under what circumstances primary healthcare teams engage (if at all) in a learning process to integrate IPV management in their practices; and why, how, and under what circumstances team learning processes lead to the development of organizational culture and values regarding IPV management, and the delivery of IPV management services. Methods This study will be conducted in Spain using a multiple-case study design. Data will be collected from selected cases (primary healthcare teams) through different methods: individual and group interviews, routinely collected statistical data, documentary review, and observation. Cases will be purposively selected in order to enable testing the initial middle-range theory (MRT). After in-depth exploration of a limited number of cases, additional cases will be chosen for their ability to contribute to refining the emerging MRT to explain how primary healthcare learn to integrate intimate partner violence management. Discussion Evaluations of health sector responses to IPV are scarce, and even fewer focus on why, how, and when the healthcare services integrate IPV management. There is a consensus that healthcare professionals and healthcare teams play a key role in this integration, and that training is important in order to realize changes. However, little is known about team learning of IPV management, both in

  11. Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emission Source Aerosols (TERESA): Introduction and overview

    PubMed Central

    Godleski, John J.; Rohr, Annette C.; Kang, Choong M.; Diaz, Edgar A.; Ruiz, Pablo A.; Koutrakis, Petros

    2013-01-01

    Determining the health impacts of sources and components of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) is an important scientific goal. PM2.5 is a complex mixture of inorganic and organic constituents that are likely to differ in their potential to cause adverse health outcomes. The Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols (TERESA) study focused on two PM sources—coal-fired power plants and mobile sources—and sought to investigate the toxicological effects of exposure to emissions from these sources. The set of papers published here document the power plant experiments. TERESA attempted to delineate health effects of primary particles, secondary (aged) particles, and mixtures of these with common atmospheric constituents. TERESA involved withdrawal of emissions from the stacks of three coal-fired power plants in the United States. The emissions were aged and atmospherically transformed in a mobile laboratory simulating downwind power plant plume processing. Toxicological evaluations were carried out in laboratory rats exposed to different emission scenarios with extensive exposure characterization. The approach employed in TERESA was ambitious and innovative. Technical challenges included the development of stack sampling technology that prevented condensation of water vapor from the power plant exhaust during sampling and transfer, while minimizing losses of primary particles; development and optimization of a photochemical chamber to provide an aged aerosol for animal exposures; development and evaluation of a denuder system to remove excess gaseous components; and development of a mobile toxicology laboratory. This paper provides an overview of the conceptual framework, design, and methods employed in the study. PMID:21639692

  12. Evaluation of EEG localization methods using realistic simulations of interictal spikes.

    PubMed

    Grova, C; Daunizeau, J; Lina, J-M; Bénar, C G; Benali, H; Gotman, J

    2006-02-01

    Performing an accurate localization of sources of interictal spikes from EEG scalp measurements is of particular interest during the presurgical investigation of epilepsy. The purpose of this paper is to study the ability of six distributed source localization methods to recover extended sources of activated cortex. Due to the frequent lack of a gold standard to evaluate source localization methods, our evaluation was performed in a controlled environment using realistic simulations of EEG interictal spikes, involving several anatomical locations with several spatial extents. Simulated data were corrupted by physiological EEG noise. Simulations involving pairs of sources with the same amplitude were also studied. In addition to standard validation criteria (e.g., geodesic distance or mean square error), we proposed an original criterion dedicated to assess detection accuracy, based on receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis. Six source localization methods were evaluated: the minimum norm, the minimum norm weighted by multivariate source prelocalization (MSP), cortical LORETA with or without additional minimum norm regularization, and two derivations of the maximum entropy on the mean (MEM) approach. Results showed that LORETA-based and MEM-based methods were able to accurately recover sources of different spatial extents, with the exception of sources in temporo-mesial and fronto-mesial regions. Several spurious sources were generated by those methods, however, whereas methods using the MSP always located very accurately the maximum of activity but not its spatial extent. These findings suggest that one should always take into account the results from different localization methods when analyzing real interictal spikes. PMID:16271483

  13. Action learning sets in a nursing and midwifery practice learning context: a realistic evaluation.

    PubMed

    Machin, Alison I; Pearson, Pauline

    2014-08-01

    Action learning sets (ALS) are used widely for organisational and workforce development, including in nursing (Anderson and Thorpe, 2004; Pounder, 2009; Young et al., 2010). In the United Kingdom, a multi-faceted educational Pilot programme for new nurses and midwives was implemented to accelerate their clinical practice and leadership development (NHS Education Scotland, 2010). Action Learning Sets were provided for peer support and personal development. The Realistic Evaluation study reported in this paper explored issues of context, mechanism and outcome (Pawson and Tilley, 1997) influencing the action learning experiences of: programme participants (recently qualified nurses and midwives, from different practice settings); and programme supporters. A range of data were collected via: online questionnaires from 66 participants and 29 supporters; three focus groups, each comprising between eight and 10 programme participants; and one focus group with three action learning facilitators. The qualitative data pertaining to the ALS are presented in this paper. Thematic data analysis of context, mechanism and outcome configurations, generated five themes: creating and sustaining a collective learning environment; challenging constructively; collective support; the role of feedback; and effectiveness of ALS. Study outcomes suggest nursing and midwifery action learning should (a) be facilitated positively to improve participants' experience; (b) be renamed to avoid learning methodology confusion; and (c) be outcome focused to evidence impact on practice. PMID:24480095

  14. Exposing the impact of Citizens Advice Bureau services on health: a realist evaluation protocol

    PubMed Central

    Forster, N; Dalkin, S M; Lhussier, M; Hodgson, P; Carr, S M

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Welfare advice services can be used to address health inequalities, for example, through Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB). Recent reviews highlight evidence for the impact of advice services in improving people's financial position and improving mental health and well-being, daily living and social relationships. There is also some evidence for the impact of advice services in increasing accessibility of health services, and reducing general practitioner appointments and prescriptions. However, direct evidence for the impact of advice services on lifestyle behaviour and physical health is currently much less well established. There is a need for greater empirical testing of theories around the specific mechanisms through which advice services and associated financial or non-financial benefits may generate health improvements. Methods and analysis A realist evaluation will be conducted, operationalised in 5 phases: building the explanatory framework; refining the explanatory framework; testing the explanatory framework through empirical data (mixed methods); development of a bespoke data recording template to capture longer term impact; and verification of findings with a range of CAB services. This research will therefore aim to build, refine and test an explanatory framework about how CAB services can be optimally implemented to achieve health improvement. Ethics and dissemination The study was approved by the ethics committee at Northumbria University, UK. Project-related ethical issues are described and quality control aspects of the study are considered. A stakeholder mapping exercise will inform the dissemination of results in order to ensure all relevant institutions and organisations are targeted. PMID:26792219

  15. Evaluation of automated emergency response systems

    SciTech Connect

    Addis, R.P.

    1988-12-31

    Automated Emergency Response (ER) systems are playing a greater role in providing prompt and reliable predictions of the impact of inadvertent releases of hazardous materials to the environment. Observed and forecast environmental and accident source term data are input into environmental transport and dispersion models to provide dosimetry estimates used as decision making aids for responding to emergencies. Several automated ER systems have been developed for US Federal Government facilities and many are available commercially. For such systems to be useful, they must reliably and consistently deliver a timely product to the decision makers. Evaluation of the entire ER system is essential to determine the performance that can be expected from the system during an emergency. Unfortunately, seldom are ER systems evaluated as a whole. Usually Quality Assurance programs evaluate the performance of individual components of the system. Most atmospheric pollution model evaluation methods usually involve an evaluation of the predictive performance of the transport and dispersion model when compared either with experimental tracer results or results from other models. Rarely, however, is the ability of the ER system to provide timely, reliable and consistent information evaluated. Such an evaluation is vital to determine the system performance during an emergency and to provide valuable information to aid in improving the system.

  16. Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emission Source Aerosols (TERESA)-power plant studies: assessment of cellular responses

    PubMed Central

    Godleski, John J.; Diaz, Edgar A.; Lemos, Miriam; Long, Mark; Ruiz, Pablo; Gupta, Tarun; Kang, Choong-Min; Coull, Brent

    2013-01-01

    The Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emission Source Aerosols (TERESA) project assessed primary and secondary particulate by simulating the chemical reactions that a plume from a source might undergo during atmospheric transport and added other atmospheric constituents that might interact with it. Three coal-fired power plants with different coal and different emission controls were used. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed for 6 h to either filtered air or aged aerosol from the power plant. Four exposure scenarios were studied: primary particles (P); primary + secondary (oxidized) particles (PO); primary + secondary (oxidized) particles + SOA (POS); and primary + secondary (oxidized) particles neutralized + SOA (PONS). Exposure concentrations varied by scenario to a maximum concentration of 257.1 ± 10.0 µg/m3. Twenty-four hours after exposure, pulmonary cellular responses were assessed by bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), complete blood count (CBC), and histopathology. Exposure to the PONS and POS scenarios produced significant increases in BAL total cells and macrophage numbers at two plants. The PONS and P scenarios were associated with significant increases in BAL neutrophils and the presence of occasional neutrophils and increased macrophages in the airways and alveoli of exposed animals. Univariate analyses and random forest analyses showed that increases in total cell count and macrophage cell count were significantly associated with neutralized sulfate and several correlated measurements. Increases in neutrophils in BAL were associated with zinc. There were no significant differences in CBC parameters or blood vessel wall thickness by histopathology. The association between neutrophils increases and zinc raises the possibility that metals play a role in this response. PMID:21466245

  17. The organisation of interagency training to safeguard children in England: a case study using realistic evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Patsios, Demi; Carpenter, John

    2010-01-01

    Background Joint training for interagency working is carried out by Local Safeguarding Children Boards in England to promote effective local working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children. Purpose This paper reports on the findings of the outputs and outcomes of interagency training to safeguard children in eight Local Safeguarding Children Boards. Methods A review of Local Safeguarding Children Board documentation, observations of Local Safeguarding Children Board training sub-group meetings and a series of interviews with training key stakeholders in each Local Safeguarding Children Board were used to assess how partner agencies in the Local Safeguarding Children Boards carried out their statutory responsibilities to organise interagency training. ‘Realistic Evaluation’ was used to evaluate the mechanisms by which a central government mandate produced particular inter-agency training outputs (number of courses, training days) and joint working outcomes (effective partnerships), within particular Local Safeguarding Children Board contexts. Results The ‘mandated partnership’ imposed on Local Safeguarding Children Boards by central government left little choice but for partner agencies to work together to deliver joint training, which in turn affected the dynamics of working partnerships across the various sites. The effectiveness of the training sub group determined the success of the organisation and delivery of training for joint working. Despite having a central mandate, Local Safeguarding Children Boards had heterogeneous funding and training arrangements. These resulted in significant variations in the outputs in terms of the number of courses per ‘children in need’ in the locality and in the cost per course. Conclusions Interagency training which takes account of the context of the Local Safeguarding Children Board is more likely to produce better trained staff, effective partnership working, and lead to better integrated safeguarding

  18. Imaging hemorrhagic stroke with magnetic induction tomography: realistic simulation and evaluation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yinan; Yan, Ming; Chen, Dayu; Hamsch, Matthias; Liu, Hui; Jin, Hua; Vauhkonen, Marko; Igney, Claudia H; Kahlert, Joachim; Wang, Yuanyuan

    2010-06-01

    Magnetic induction tomography (MIT) is a noncontact method for detecting the internal conductivity distribution of an object. This technology has the potential to be used in the biomedical area to check bio-impedance change inside the human body, for example to detect hemorrhage in the human brain. In this study the hemorrhagic stroke detectability with a 16-channel MIT system operating at 10 MHz was evaluated. Since the conductivity distribution is changed by the hemorrhagic stroke as well as the squeezed brain tissue around the stroke, deformation of the brain tissue is also considered and simulated with the help of a FEM-based linear bio-mechanical model in this paper. To simulate the raw measurement data as realistically as possible, the noise estimated from the experimental MIT system with hypothesis testing methods at 95% confidence level is added to the simulated measurements. Stroke images of 600 noisy samples for each detection assignment are reconstructed by the one-step Tikhonov-regularized inverse eddy current solution. Under the statistical framework, the detection failure is in control of a high false negative rate which represents a large artifact visualized in the reconstruction domain. The qualitative detectability of 18 detecting assignments, with three hemorrhagic positions (shallow, medial and center of the cerebrum) and two volume values (10 ml and 20 ml), overlaid by noise with three levels (standard deviation of phase change at 5 x 10(-3) degrees , 2.5 x 10(-3) degrees , 10 x 10(-3) degrees ), are investigated. These detecting assignments are compared with each other to find out which volumes of deformed spherical hemorrhagic stroke can be detected by the modeled MIT system. PMID:20453292

  19. Implementing accountability for reasonableness framework at district level in Tanzania: a realist evaluation

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Despite the growing importance of the Accountability for Reasonableness (A4R) framework in priority setting worldwide, there is still an inadequate understanding of the processes and mechanisms underlying its influence on legitimacy and fairness, as conceived and reflected in service management processes and outcomes. As a result, the ability to draw scientifically sound lessons for the application of the framework to services and interventions is limited. This paper evaluates the experiences of implementing the A4R approach in Mbarali District, Tanzania, in order to find out how the innovation was shaped, enabled, and constrained by the interaction between contexts, mechanisms and outcomes. Methods This study draws on the principles of realist evaluation -- a largely qualitative approach, chiefly concerned with testing and refining programme theories by exploring the complex interactions of contexts, mechanisms, and outcomes. Mixed methods were used in data collection, including individual interviews, non-participant observation, and document reviews. A thematic framework approach was adopted for the data analysis. Results The study found that while the A4R approach to priority setting was helpful in strengthening transparency, accountability, stakeholder engagement, and fairness, the efforts at integrating it into the current district health system were challenging. Participatory structures under the decentralisation framework, central government's call for partnership in district-level planning and priority setting, perceived needs of stakeholders, as well as active engagement between researchers and decision makers all facilitated the adoption and implementation of the innovation. In contrast, however, limited local autonomy, low level of public awareness, unreliable and untimely funding, inadequate accountability mechanisms, and limited local resources were the major contextual factors that hampered the full implementation. Conclusion This study

  20. The Emergency School Assistance Program: An Evaluation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    American Friends Service Committee, Washington, DC.

    This report, prepared by a group of private organizations concerned with the problems of race, education, and poverty, is an evaluation of the first months of the administration of the Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP). The report is based upon personal visits to nearly 300 school districts receiving ESAP grants by attorneys and other…

  1. Simulation Evaluation of Controller-Managed Spacing Tools under Realistic Operational Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Callantine, Todd J.; Hunt, Sarah M.; Prevot, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Controller-Managed Spacing (CMS) tools have been developed to aid air traffic controllers in managing high volumes of arriving aircraft according to a schedule while enabling them to fly efficient descent profiles. The CMS tools are undergoing refinement in preparation for field demonstration as part of NASA's Air Traffic Management (ATM) Technology Demonstration-1 (ATD-1). System-level ATD-1 simulations have been conducted to quantify expected efficiency and capacity gains under realistic operational conditions. This paper presents simulation results with a focus on CMS-tool human factors. The results suggest experienced controllers new to the tools find them acceptable and can use them effectively in ATD-1 operations.

  2. Cardiac autonomic functions and the emergence of violence in a highly realistic model of social conflict in humans

    PubMed Central

    Haller, Jozsef; Raczkevy-Deak, Gabriella; Gyimesine, Katalin P.; Szakmary, Andras; Farkas, Istvan; Vegh, Jozsef

    2014-01-01

    Among the multitude of factors that can transform human social interactions into violent conflicts, biological features received much attention in recent years as correlates of decision making and aggressiveness especially in critical situations. We present here a highly realistic new model of human aggression and violence, where genuine acts of aggression are readily performed and which at the same time allows the parallel recording of biological concomitants. Particularly, we studied police officers trained at the International Training Centre (Budapest, Hungary), who are prepared to perform operations under extreme conditions of stress. We found that aggressive arousal can transform a basically peaceful social encounter into a violent conflict. Autonomic recordings show that this change is accompanied by increased heart rates, which was associated earlier with reduced cognitive complexity of perceptions (“attentional myopia”) and promotes a bias toward hostile attributions and aggression. We also observed reduced heart rate variability in violent subjects, which is believed to signal a poor functioning of prefrontal-subcortical inhibitory circuits and reduces self-control. Importantly, these autonomic particularities were observed already at the beginning of social encounters i.e., before aggressive acts were initiated, suggesting that individual characteristics of the stress-response define the way in which social pressure affects social behavior, particularly the way in which this develops into violence. Taken together, these findings suggest that cardiac autonomic functions are valuable external symptoms of internal motivational states and decision making processes, and raise the possibility that behavior under social pressure can be predicted by the individual characteristics of stress responsiveness. PMID:25374519

  3. Evaluating real-time image reconstruction in diffuse optical tomography using physiologically realistic test data

    PubMed Central

    Brigadoi, Sabrina; Powell, Samuel; Cooper, Robert J.; Dempsey, Laura A.; Arridge, Simon; Everdell, Nick; Hebden, Jeremy; Gibson, Adam P.

    2015-01-01

    In diffuse optical tomography (DOT), real-time image reconstruction of oxy- and deoxy-haemoglobin changes occurring in the brain could give valuable information in clinical care settings. Although non-linear reconstruction techniques could provide more accurate results, their computational burden makes them unsuitable for real-time applications. Linear techniques can be employed under the assumption that the expected change in absorption is small. Several approaches exist, differing primarily in their handling of regularization and the noise statistics. In real experiments, it is impossible to compute the true noise statistics, because of the presence of physiological oscillations in the measured data. This is even more critical in real-time applications, where no off-line filtering and averaging can be performed to reduce the noise level. Therefore, many studies substitute the noise covariance matrix with the identity matrix. In this paper, we examined two questions: does using the noise model with realistic, imperfect data yield an improvement in image quality compared to using the identity matrix; and what is the difference in quality between online and offline reconstructions. Bespoke test data were created using a novel process through which simulated changes in absorption were added to real resting-state DOT data. A realistic multi-layer head model was used as the geometry for the reconstruction. Results validated our assumptions, highlighting the validity of computing the noise statistics from the measured data for online image reconstruction, which was performed at 2 Hz. Our results can be directly extended to a real application where real-time imaging is required. PMID:26713189

  4. Evaluation of an Emerging Research Center: Lessons Learned.

    PubMed

    Nigg, C R; Qureshi, K; Inouye, J; Sy, A; Sullivan, K; Boland, M G

    2012-02-01

    PROBLEM STATEMENT: Rigorous evaluation assures that research endeavors meet their purpose and achieve stated goals. This is especially true for federally funded exploratory research centers, which tend to be more complex due to the involvement of multiple, interdisciplinary investigators. This study provides an overview of the approach used to develop an evaluation strategy and reports the lessons learned during the initial development of the Center for Ohana Self-Management of Chronic Illness (COSMCI) at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene. The COSMCI is composed of an interdisciplinary team of researchers and practitioners and aims to advance knowledge in the field of self management of chronic disease in the community setting. APPROACH: A systematic approach was utilized that included formative and summative strategies for ongoing evaluation. The problem was solved by addressing five key concerns: (1) development of research structure, (2) observing the process of the research pilot projects, (3) scholarly activity of COSMCI faculty, (4) dissemination and translation and (5) sustainability prospects. The method of research included formulating process strategies and determine if the plans for developing the Center were followed and whether these plans were effective. Interviews were also conducted at year one and at mid-point though the project. RESULTS: Themes that emerged from our evaluation included inclusion, timelines, realistic expectations, ongoing evaluation and preparing for changes in the team. This provided timely recognition of successes and challenges and facilitated a rapid response for interventions especially during the early development stage of the center. CONCLUSION/RECOMMENDATIONS: Effective development of a successful Center is highly dependent upon having a strong evaluation process in place that can inform ongoing development. An exploratory research center requires ongoing evaluation that allows for

  5. Use of a realistic breathing lung phantom to evaluate dose delivery errors

    SciTech Connect

    Court, Laurence E.; Seco, Joao; Lu Xingqi; Ebe, Kazuyu; Mayo, Charles; Ionascu, Dan; Winey, Brian; Giakoumakis, Nikos; Aristophanous, Michalis; Berbeco, Ross; Rottman, Joerg; Bogdanov, Madeleine; Schofield, Deborah; Lingos, Tania

    2010-11-15

    Purpose: To compare the effect of respiration-induced motion on delivered dose (the interplay effect) for different treatment techniques under realistic clinical conditions. Methods: A flexible resin tumor model was created using rapid prototyping techniques based on a computed tomography (CT) image of an actual tumor. Twenty micro-MOSFETs were inserted into the tumor model and the tumor model was inserted into an anthropomorphic breathing phantom. Phantom motion was programed using the motion trajectory of an actual patient. A four-dimensional CT image was obtained and several treatment plans were created using different treatment techniques and planning systems: Conformal (Eclipse), step-and-shoot intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) (Pinnacle), step-and-shoot IMRT (XiO), dynamic IMRT (Eclipse), complex dynamic IMRT (Eclipse), hybrid IMRT [60% conformal, 40% dynamic IMRT (Eclipse)], volume-modulated arc therapy (VMAT) [single-arc (Eclipse)], VMAT [double-arc (Eclipse)], and complex VMAT (Eclipse). The complex plans were created by artificially pushing the optimizer to give complex multileaf collimator sequences. Each IMRT field was irradiated five times and each VMAT field was irradiated ten times, with each irradiation starting at a random point in the respiratory cycle. The effect of fractionation was calculated by randomly summing the measured doses. The maximum deviation for each measurement point per fraction and the probability that 95% of the model tumor had dose deviations less than 2% and 5% were calculated as a function of the number of fractions. Tumor control probabilities for each treatment plan were calculated and compared. Results: After five fractions, measured dose deviations were less than 2% for more than 95% of measurement points within the tumor model for all plans, except the complex dynamic IMRT, step-and-shoot IMRT (XiO), complex VMAT, and single-arc VMAT plans. Reducing the dose rate of the complex IMRT plans from 600 to 200 MU

  6. Evaluation of three-dimensional anisotropic head model for mapping realistic electromagnetic fields of brain tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeong, Woo Chul; Wi, Hun; Sajib, Saurav Z. K.; Oh, Tong In; Kim, Hyung Joong; Kwon, Oh In; Woo, Eung Je

    2015-08-01

    Electromagnetic fields provide fundamental data for the imaging of electrical tissue properties, such as conductivity and permittivity, in recent magnetic resonance (MR)-based tissue property mapping. The induced voltage, current density, and magnetic flux density caused by externally injected current are critical factors for determining the image quality of electrical tissue conductivity. As a useful tool to identify bio-electromagnetic phenomena, precise approaches are required to understand the exact responses inside the human body subject to an injected currents. In this study, we provide the numerical simulation results of electromagnetic field mapping of brain tissues using a MR-based conductivity imaging method. First, we implemented a realistic three-dimensional human anisotropic head model using high-resolution anatomical and diffusion tensor MR images. The voltage, current density, and magnetic flux density of brain tissues were imaged by injecting 1 mA of current through pairs of electrodes on the surface of our head model. The current density map of anisotropic brain tissues was calculated from the measured magnetic flux density based on the linear relationship between the water diffusion tensor and the electrical conductivity tensor. Comparing the current density to the previous isotropic model, the anisotropic model clearly showed the differences between the brain tissues. This originates from the enhanced signals by the inherent conductivity contrast as well as the actual tissue condition resulting from the injected currents.

  7. Realistic evaluation of hull performance for rowing shells, canoes, and kayaks in unsteady flow.

    PubMed

    Day, Alexander; Campbell, Ian; Clelland, David; Doctors, Lawrence J; Cichowicz, Jakub

    2011-07-01

    In this study, we investigated the effect of hull dynamics in shallow water on the hydrodynamic performance of rowing shells as well as canoes and kayaks. An approach was developed to generate data in a towing tank using a test rig capable of reproducing realistic speed profiles. The impact of unsteady shallow-water effects on wave-making resistance was examined via experimental measurements on a benchmark hull. The data generated were used to explore the validity of a computational approach developed to predict unsteady shallow-water wave resistance. Comparison of measured and predicted results showed that the computational approach correctly predicted complex unsteady wave-resistance phenomena at low oscillation frequency and speed, but that total resistance was substantially under-predicted at moderate oscillation frequency and speed. It was postulated that this discrepancy arose from unsteady viscous effects. This was investigated via hot-film measurements for a full-scale single scull in unsteady flow in both towing-tank and field-trial conditions. Results suggested a strong link between acceleration and turbulence and demonstrated that the measured real-world viscous-flow behaviour could be successfully reproduced in the tank. Thus a suitable tank-test approach could provide a reliable guide to hull performance characterization in unsteady flow. PMID:21756127

  8. Advocacy evaluation: challenges and emerging trends.

    PubMed

    Devlin-Foltz, David; Fagen, Michael C; Reed, Ehren; Medina, Robert; Neiger, Brad L

    2012-09-01

    Devising, promoting, and implementing changes in policies and regulations are important components of population-level health promotion. Whether advocating for changes in school meal nutrition standards or restrictions on secondhand smoke, policy change can create environments conducive to healthier choices. Such policy changes often result from complex advocacy efforts that do not lend themselves to traditional evaluation approaches. In a challenging fiscal environment, allocating scarce resources to policy advocacy may be particularly difficult. A well-designed evaluation that moves beyond inventorying advocacy activities can help make the case for funding advocacy and policy change efforts. Although it is one thing to catalog meetings held, position papers drafted, and pamphlets distributed, it is quite another to demonstrate that these outputs resulted in useful policy change outcomes. This is where the emerging field of advocacy evaluation fits in by assessing (among other things) strategic learning, capacity building, and community organizing. Based on recent developments, this article highlights several challenges advocacy evaluators are currently facing and provides new resources for addressing them. PMID:22773623

  9. Emergency building temperature restrictions. Final evaluation

    SciTech Connect

    1980-11-01

    On July 5, 1979, DOE promulgated final regulations of the Emergency Building Temperature Restrictions program, placing emergency restrictions on thermostat settings for space heating, space cooling, and hot water in commercial, industrial, and nonresidential public buildings. The final regulations restricted space heating to a maximum of 65/sup 0/F, hot water temperature to a maximum of 105/sup 0/F, and cooling temperature to a minimum of 78/sup 0/F. A comprehensive evaluation of the entire EBTF program for a nine-month period from July 16, 1979 is presented. In Chapter 1, an estimate of the population of buildings covered by EBTR is presented. In Chapter 2, EBTR compliance by building type and region is reported. Exemptions are also discussed. In Chapter 3, the simulations of building energy use are explained and the relative impact of various building characteristics and effectiveness of different control strategies are estimated. Finally, in Chapter 4, the methodology for scaling the individual building energy savings to the national level is described, and estimated national energy savings are presented.

  10. INTRINSIC EVALUATION OF TEXT MINING TOOLS MAY NOT PREDICT PERFORMANCE ON REALISTIC TASKS

    PubMed Central

    CAPORASO, J. GREGORY; DESHPANDE, NITA; FINK, J. LYNN; BOURNE, PHILIP E.; COHEN, K. BRETONNEL; HUNTER, LAWRENCE

    2008-01-01

    Biomedical text mining and other automated techniques are beginning to achieve performance which suggests that they could be applied to aid database curators. However, few studies have evaluated how these systems might work in practice. In this article we focus on the problem of annotating mutations in Protein Data Bank (PDB) entries, and evaluate the relationship between performance of two automated techniques, a text-mining-based approach (MutationFinder) and an alignment-based approach, in intrinsic versus extrinsic evaluations. We find that high performance on gold standard data (an intrinsic evaluation) does not necessarily translate to high performance for database annotation (an extrinsic evaluation). We show that this is in part a result of lack of access to the full text of journal articles, which appears to be critical for comprehensive database annotation by text mining. Additionally, we evaluate the accuracy and completeness of manually annotated mutation data in the PDB, and find that it is far from perfect. We conclude that currently the most cost-effective and reliable approach for database annotation might incorporate manual and automatic annotation methods. PMID:18229722

  11. A Realist Evaluation Approach to Unpacking the Impacts of the Sentencing Guidelines

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hunt, Kim Steven; Sridharan, Sanjeev

    2010-01-01

    Evaluations of complex interventions such as sentencing guidelines provide an opportunity to understand the mechanisms by which policies and programs can impact intermediate and long-term outcomes. There is limited previous discussion of the underlying frameworks by which sentencing guidelines can impact outcomes such as crime rates. Guided by a…

  12. Evaluation of an improved algorithm for producing realistic 3D breast software phantoms: Application for mammography

    SciTech Connect

    Bliznakova, K.; Suryanarayanan, S.; Karellas, A.; Pallikarakis, N.

    2010-11-15

    Purpose: This work presents an improved algorithm for the generation of 3D breast software phantoms and its evaluation for mammography. Methods: The improved methodology has evolved from a previously presented 3D noncompressed breast modeling method used for the creation of breast models of different size, shape, and composition. The breast phantom is composed of breast surface, duct system and terminal ductal lobular units, Cooper's ligaments, lymphatic and blood vessel systems, pectoral muscle, skin, 3D mammographic background texture, and breast abnormalities. The key improvement is the development of a new algorithm for 3D mammographic texture generation. Simulated images of the enhanced 3D breast model without lesions were produced by simulating mammographic image acquisition and were evaluated subjectively and quantitatively. For evaluation purposes, a database with regions of interest taken from simulated and real mammograms was created. Four experienced radiologists participated in a visual subjective evaluation trial, as they judged the quality of the simulated mammograms, using the new algorithm compared to mammograms, obtained with the old modeling approach. In addition, extensive quantitative evaluation included power spectral analysis and calculation of fractal dimension, skewness, and kurtosis of simulated and real mammograms from the database. Results: The results from the subjective evaluation strongly suggest that the new methodology for mammographic breast texture creates improved breast models compared to the old approach. Calculated parameters on simulated images such as {beta} exponent deducted from the power law spectral analysis and fractal dimension are similar to those calculated on real mammograms. The results for the kurtosis and skewness are also in good coincidence with those calculated from clinical images. Comparison with similar calculations published in the literature showed good agreement in the majority of cases. Conclusions: The

  13. Using the Co-Production of Knowledge for Developing Realistic Natural Disaster Scenarios for Small-to-Medium Scale Emergency Management Exercises

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robinson, T.; Wilson, T. M.; Davies, T. R.; Orchiston, C.; Thompson, J.

    2014-12-01

    Disaster scenarios for Emergency Management (EM) exercises are a widely-used and effective tool for communicating hazard information to policy makers, EM personnel, lifelines operators and communities in general. It is crucial that the scenarios are as realistic as possible. Major disasters however, contain a series of cascading consequences, both environmental and social, which are difficult to model. Consequently, only recently have large-scale exercises included such processes; incorporating these in small- and medium-scale scenarios has yet to be attempted. This study details work undertaken in a recent medium-scale earthquake exercise in New Zealand to introduce such cascading processes into the disaster scenario. Given limited time, data, and funding, we show that the co-production of knowledge between natural disaster scientists, EM personnel, and governance and lifelines organisations can yield detailed, realistic scenarios. Using the co-production process, scenario development was able to identify where the pre-exercise state of knowledge was insufficient. This enabled a focussed research response driven by end-user needs. This found that in general, seismic hazard (ground shaking) and its likely impacts were well known and understood by all parties. However, subsequent landsliding and associated effects were poorly known and understood and their potential impacts unconsidered. Scenario development therefore focussed primarily on understanding these processes and their potential effects. This resulted in cascading hazards being included in a medium-scale NZ exercise for the first time. Further, all participants were able to focus on the potential impacts on their specific sectors, increasing the level of knowledge of cascading processes across all parties. Using group based discussions throughout the design process allowed a detailed scenario to be created, fostered stronger inter-disciplinary relationships, and identified areas for further research

  14. Challenges in Integrating Nondestructive Evaluation and Finite Element Methods for Realistic Structural Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abdul-Aziz, Ali; Baaklini, George Y.; Zagidulin, Dmitri; Rauser, Richard W.

    2000-01-01

    Capabilities and expertise related to the development of links between nondestructive evaluation (NDE) and finite element analysis (FEA) at Glenn Research Center (GRC) are demonstrated. Current tools to analyze data produced by computed tomography (CT) scans are exercised to help assess the damage state in high temperature structural composite materials. A utility translator was written to convert velocity (an image processing software) STL data file to a suitable CAD-FEA type file. Finite element analyses are carried out with MARC, a commercial nonlinear finite element code, and the analytical results are discussed. Modeling was established by building MSC/Patran (a pre and post processing finite element package) generated model and comparing it to a model generated by Velocity in conjunction with MSC/Patran Graphics. Modeling issues and results are discussed in this paper. The entire process that outlines the tie between the data extracted via NDE and the finite element modeling and analysis is fully described.

  15. Toward a comprehensive and realistic risk evaluation of engineered nanomaterials in the urban water system

    PubMed Central

    Duester, Lars; Burkhardt, Michael; Gutleb, Arno C.; Kaegi, Ralf; Macken, Ailbhe; Meermann, Björn; von der Kammer, Frank

    2014-01-01

    The European COoperation in Science and Technology (COST) Action ES1205 on the transfer of Engineered Nano materials from wastewater Treatment and stormwatEr to Rivers (ENTER) aims to create and to maintain a trans European network among scientists. This perspective article delivers a brief overview on the status quo at the beginning of the project by addressing the following aspects on engineered nano materials (ENMs) in the urban systems: (1) ENMs that need to be considered on a European level; (2) uncertainties on production-volume estimations; (3) fate of selected ENMs during waste water transport and treatment; (4) analytical strategies for ENM analysis; (5) ecotoxicity of ENMs, and (6) future needs. These six step stones deliver the derivation of the position of the ES1205 network at the beginning of the projects runtime, by defining six fundamental aspects that should be considered in future discussions on risk evaluation of ENMs in urban water systems. PMID:25003102

  16. Realistic Subscale Evaluations of the Mechanical Properties of Advanced Disk Superalloys

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gabb, Timothy P.; Gayda, John; Telesman, Jack; Kantzos, Peter T.; Konkel, William A.

    2003-01-01

    A series of experimental powder metallurgy disk alloys were evaluated for their processing characteristics and high temperature mechanical properties. Powder of each alloy was hot compacted, extruded, and isothermally forged into subscale disks. Disks were subsolvus and supersolvus heat treated, then quenched using procedures designed to reproduce the cooling paths expected in large-scale disks. Mechanical tests were then performed at 538, 704, and 815 C. Several alloys had superior tensile and creep properties at 704 C and higher temperatures, but were difficult to process and prone to quench cracking, chiefly due to their high gamma prime solvus temperature. Several other alloys had more favorable processing characteristics due to their lower gamma prime solvus temperature and balanced time-dependent properties at 704 C. Results indicate an experimental low solvus, high refractory alloy can build upon the best attributes of all these alloys, giving exceptional tensile and creep properties at high temperatures with good processing characteristics due to a low gamma prime solvus.

  17. Implementing health research through academic and clinical partnerships: a realistic evaluation of the Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC)

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The English National Health Service has made a major investment in nine partnerships between higher education institutions and local health services called Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC). They have been funded to increase capacity and capability to produce and implement research through sustained interactions between academics and health services. CLAHRCs provide a natural 'test bed' for exploring questions about research implementation within a partnership model of delivery. This protocol describes an externally funded evaluation that focuses on implementation mechanisms and processes within three CLAHRCs. It seeks to uncover what works, for whom, how, and in what circumstances. Design and methods This study is a longitudinal three-phase, multi-method realistic evaluation, which deliberately aims to explore the boundaries around knowledge use in context. The evaluation funder wishes to see it conducted for the process of learning, not for judging performance. The study is underpinned by a conceptual framework that combines the Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services and Knowledge to Action frameworks to reflect the complexities of implementation. Three participating CLARHCS will provide in-depth comparative case studies of research implementation using multiple data collection methods including interviews, observation, documents, and publicly available data to test and refine hypotheses over four rounds of data collection. We will test the wider applicability of emerging findings with a wider community using an interpretative forum. Discussion The idea that collaboration between academics and services might lead to more applicable health research that is actually used in practice is theoretically and intuitively appealing; however the evidence for it is limited. Our evaluation is designed to capture the processes and impacts of collaborative approaches for implementing research, and

  18. Emergency birth hybrid simulation with standardized patients in midwifery education: implementation and evaluation.

    PubMed

    Lindsay Miller, Jane; Avery, Melissa D; Larson, Karin; Woll, Anne; VonAchen, Alison; Mortenson, Angela

    2015-01-01

    Structured simulations have become a critical part of health professions education at every level, particularly for high-risk, low-incidence scenarios. This article describes the implementation and evaluation of a hybrid simulation of emergency birth situations in a graduate midwifery program. In the fall of 2011 and spring of 2012, nurse-midwifery students twice participated in 2 simulated emergencies-shoulder dystocia and postpartum hemorrhage-using hybrid simulation (a standardized patient paired with a birth task trainer). Students found the simulations to be realistic. The use of best practices (ie, repetitive practice, team learning, small group debriefing, and large group debriefing) enhanced the quality of the simulation experience and the learners' reflection about their professional skills, strengths, weaknesses, and confidence in managing these 2 obstetric emergencies. This article is part of a special series of articles that address midwifery innovations in clinical practice, education, interprofessional collaboration, health policy, and global health. PMID:25963413

  19. TOXICOLOGICAL EVALUATION OF REALISTIC EMISSIONS OF SOURCE AEROSOLS (TERESA): APPLICATION TO POWER PLANT-DERIVED PM2.5

    SciTech Connect

    Annette Rohr

    2006-03-01

    TERESA (Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols) involves exposing laboratory rats to realistic coal-fired power plant and mobile source emissions to help determine the relative toxicity of these PM sources. There are three coal-fired power plants in the TERESA program; this report describes the results of fieldwork conducted at the first plant, located in the Upper Midwest. The project was technically challenging by virtue of its novel design and requirement for the development of new techniques. By examining aged, atmospherically transformed aerosol derived from power plant stack emissions, we were able to evaluate the toxicity of PM derived from coal combustion in a manner that more accurately reflects the exposure of concern than existing methodologies. TERESA also involves assessment of actual plant emissions in a field setting--an important strength since it reduces the question of representativeness of emissions. A sampling system was developed and assembled to draw emissions from the stack; stack sampling conducted according to standard EPA protocol suggested that the sampled emissions are representative of those exiting the stack into the atmosphere. Two mobile laboratories were then outfitted for the study: (1) a chemical laboratory in which the atmospheric aging was conducted and which housed the bulk of the analytical equipment; and (2) a toxicological laboratory, which contained animal caging and the exposure apparatus. Animal exposures were carried out from May-November 2004 to a number of simulated atmospheric scenarios. Toxicological endpoints included (1) pulmonary function and breathing pattern; (2) bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cytological and biochemical analyses; (3) blood cytological analyses; (4) in vivo oxidative stress in heart and lung tissue; and (5) heart and lung histopathology. Results indicated no differences between exposed and control animals in any of the endpoints examined. Exposure concentrations for the

  20. Turning around an ailing district hospital: a realist evaluation of strategic changes at Ho Municipal Hospital (Ghana)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    as the core mechanisms underlying the changes taking place at Ho Municipal Hospital. Conclusions This study shows how a hospital management team in Ghana succeeded in resuscitating an ailing hospital. Their high commitment management approach led to the active involvement and empowerment of staff. It also showed how a realist evaluation approach such as this, could be used in the research of the management of health care organisations to explain how management interventions may or may not work. PMID:21184678

  1. Bedside pediatric emergency evaluation through ultrasonography.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Ann M; Coley, Brian D

    2008-11-01

    Bedside US has emerged as a valuable technology for the emergency department physician. It impacts clinical decision-making and the safety of procedures, and it decreases the time and increases the efficiency for completion of procedures. The portability, accuracy and noninvasive nature of US make it an ideal tool for the trained clinician. Bedside US can improve clinical decision-making for the pediatric patient by helping the clinician to identify critical pathology, direct therapeutic maneuvers and determine the futility of resuscitations. Many pediatric procedures, such as vascular access, lumbar puncture and bladder catheterization, are typically performed blindly. Bedside US enhances the success of procedures, minimizes complications and limits the number of attempts necessary to complete a procedure. Bedside US can be a valuable adjunct for complicated and time-sensitive disease processes such as ectopic pregnancy, testicular torsion and hypovolemia by providing information to guide diagnostic and therapeutic interventions that subsequently improve outcomes. PMID:18810417

  2. Chest pain evaluation in the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Foy, Andrew J; Filippone, Lisa

    2015-07-01

    Chest pain is a common complaint in the emergency department. Recognition of chest pain symptoms and electrocardiographic changes consistent with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) can lead to prompt initiation of goal-directed therapy. Cardiac troponin testing confirms the diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction, but does not reveal the mechanism of injury. When patients with chest pain rule out for ACS the use of advanced, noninvasive testing has not been found to be associated with better patient outcomes. PMID:26042885

  3. More than a checklist: a realist evaluation of supervision of mid-level health workers in rural Guatemala

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Mid-level health workers (MLHWs) form the front-line of service delivery in many low- and middle-income countries. Supervision is a critical institutional intervention linking their work to the health system, and it consists of activities intended to support health workers’ motivation and enable them to perform. However its impact depends not only on the frequency of these activities but also how they are carried out and received. This study aims to deepen understanding of the mechanisms through which supervision activities support the performance of auxiliary nurses, a cadre of MLHWs, in rural Guatemala. Methods A multiple case study was conducted to examine the operation of supervision of five health posts using a realist evaluation approach. A program theory was formulated describing local understanding of how supervision activities are intended to work. Data was collected through interviews and document review to test the theory. Analysis focused on comparison of activities, outcomes, mechanisms and the influence of context across cases, leading to revision of the program theory. Results The supervisor’s orientation was identified as the main mechanism contributing to variation observed in activities and their outcomes. Managerial control was the dominant orientation, reflecting the influence of standardized performance criteria and institutional culture. Humanized support was present in one case where the auxiliary nurse was motivated by the sense that the full scope of her work was valued. This orientation reflected the supervisor’s integration of her professional identity as a nurse. Conclusions The nature of the support health workers received was shaped by supervisors’ orientation, and in this study, nursing principles were central to humanized support. Efforts to strengthen the support that supervision provides to MLHWs should promote professional ethos as a means of developing shared performance goals and orient supervisors to a more

  4. Adnexal mass evaluation in the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Morgan, A

    2001-08-01

    Female patients who have stable vital signs presenting to the emergency department with abdominopelvic pain and an adnexal mass can be extremely difficult to manage. However, by performing a rapid problem-oriented history and physical with emphasis on the age of patient, menstrual history, and pelvic exam, a detailed differential diagnosis can be compiled. With the addition of a complete blood count and HCG, if appropriate, and a CA-125 for your consultant, additional information can be obtained while a ultrasound examination is being performed. With the above information, consultation and disposition should be readily accomplished. PMID:11554288

  5. Evaluation with an Experimental Design: The Emergency School Assistance Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crain, Robert L.; York, Robert L.

    The Evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP) for the 1971-72 school year is the first application of full-blown experimental design with randomized experimental and control cases in a federal evaluation of a large scale program. It is also one of the very few evaluations which has shown that federal programs can raise tested…

  6. Integration of robotic surgery into routine practice and impacts on communication, collaboration, and decision making: a realist process evaluation protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Robotic surgery offers many potential benefits for patients. While an increasing number of healthcare providers are purchasing surgical robots, there are reports that the technology is failing to be introduced into routine practice. Additionally, in robotic surgery, the surgeon is physically separated from the patient and the rest of the team, with the potential to negatively impact teamwork in the operating theatre. The aim of this study is to ascertain: how and under what circumstances robotic surgery is effectively introduced into routine practice; and how and under what circumstances robotic surgery impacts teamwork, communication and decision making, and subsequent patient outcomes. Methods and design We will undertake a process evaluation alongside a randomised controlled trial comparing laparoscopic and robotic surgery for the curative treatment of rectal cancer. Realist evaluation provides an overall framework for the study. The study will be in three phases. In Phase I, grey literature will be reviewed to identify stakeholders’ theories concerning how robotic surgery becomes embedded into surgical practice and its impacts. These theories will be refined and added to through interviews conducted across English hospitals that are using robotic surgery for rectal cancer resection with staff at different levels of the organisation, along with a review of documentation associated with the introduction of robotic surgery. In Phase II, a multi-site case study will be conducted across four English hospitals to test and refine the candidate theories. Data will be collected using multiple methods: the structured observation tool OTAS (Observational Teamwork Assessment for Surgery); video recordings of operations; ethnographic observation; and interviews. In Phase III, interviews will be conducted at the four case sites with staff representing a range of surgical disciplines, to assess the extent to which the results of Phase II are generalisable and to

  7. Stroke patients’ utilisation of extrinsic feedback from computer-based technology in the home: a multiple case study realistic evaluation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Evidence indicates that post − stroke rehabilitation improves function, independence and quality of life. A key aspect of rehabilitation is the provision of appropriate information and feedback to the learner. Advances in information and communications technology (ICT) have allowed for the development of various systems to complement stroke rehabilitation that could be used in the home setting. These systems may increase the provision of rehabilitation a stroke survivor receives and carries out, as well as providing a learning platform that facilitates long-term self-managed rehabilitation and behaviour change. This paper describes the application of an innovative evaluative methodology to explore the utilisation of feedback for post-stroke upper-limb rehabilitation in the home. Methods Using the principles of realistic evaluation, this study aimed to test and refine intervention theories by exploring the complex interactions of contexts, mechanisms and outcomes that arise from technology deployment in the home. Methods included focus groups followed by multi-method case studies (n = 5) before, during and after the use of computer-based equipment. Data were analysed in relation to the context-mechanism-outcome hypotheses case by case. This was followed by a synthesis of the findings to answer the question, ‘what works for whom and in what circumstances and respects?’ Results Data analysis reveals that to achieve desired outcomes through the use of ICT, key elements of computer feedback, such as accuracy, measurability, rewarding feedback, adaptability, and knowledge of results feedback, are required to trigger the theory-driven mechanisms underpinning the intervention. In addition, the pre-existing context and the personal and environmental contexts, such as previous experience of service delivery, personal goals, trust in the technology, and social circumstances may also enable or constrain the underpinning theory-driven mechanisms

  8. Emergency department evaluation and management of foot and ankle pain.

    PubMed

    Wedmore, Ian; Young, Scott; Franklin, Jill

    2015-05-01

    Foot and ankle injuries are a frequent cause for a visit to the Emergency Department. A thorough evaluation and treatment of these injuries needs to be an area of in-depth familiarity for the Emergency Medicine physician. The key to proper evaluation is first a history and physical examination that focuses on determining what, if any, imaging is required. Subsequently, a focused history, physical examination, and imaging will then determine if an injury is stable or unstable, requiring operative intervention. PMID:25892727

  9. Realist evaluation of the antiretroviral treatment adherence club programme in selected primary healthcare facilities in the metropolitan area of Western Cape Province, South Africa: a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Mukumbang, Ferdinand C; Van Belle, Sara; Marchal, Bruno; Van Wyk, Brian

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Suboptimal retention in care and poor treatment adherence are key challenges to antiretroviral therapy (ART) in sub-Saharan Africa. Community-based approaches to HIV service delivery are recommended to improve patient retention in care and ART adherence. The implementation of the adherence clubs in the Western Cape province of South Africa was with variable success in terms of implementation and outcomes. The need for operational guidelines for its implementation has been identified. Therefore, understanding the contexts and mechanisms for successful implementation of the adherence clubs is crucial to inform the roll-out to the rest of South Africa. The protocol outlines an evaluation of adherence club intervention in selected primary healthcare facilities in the metropolitan area of the Western Cape Province, using the realist approach. Methods and analysis In the first phase, an exploratory study design will be used. Document review and key informant interviews will be used to elicit the programme theory. In phase two, a multiple case study design will be used to describe the adherence clubs in five contrastive sites. Semistructured interviews will be conducted with purposively selected programme implementers and members of the clubs to assess the context and mechanisms of the adherence clubs. For the programme's primary outcomes, a longitudinal retrospective cohort analysis will be conducted using routine patient data. Data analysis will involve classifying emerging themes using the context-mechanism-outcome (CMO) configuration, and refining the primary CMO configurations to conjectured CMO configurations. Finally, we will compare the conjectured CMO configurations from the cases with the initial programme theory. The final CMOs obtained will be translated into middle range theories. Ethics and dissemination The study will be conducted according to the principles of the declaration of Helsinki (1964). Ethics clearance was obtained from the

  10. TOXICOLOGICAL EVALUATION OF REALISTIC EMISSIONS OF SOURCE AEROSOLS (TERESA): APPLICATION TO POWER PLANT-DERIVED PM2.5

    SciTech Connect

    Annette C. Rohr; Petros Koutrakis; John Godleski

    2011-03-31

    Determining the health impacts of different sources and components of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) is an important scientific goal, because PM is a complex mixture of both inorganic and organic constituents that likely differ in their potential to cause adverse health outcomes. The TERESA (Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols) study focused on two PM sources - coal-fired power plants and mobile sources - and sought to investigate the toxicological effects of exposure to realistic emissions from these sources. The DOE-EPRI Cooperative Agreement covered the performance and analysis of field experiments at three power plants. The mobile source component consisted of experiments conducted at a traffic tunnel in Boston; these activities were funded through the Harvard-EPA Particulate Matter Research Center and will be reported separately in the peer-reviewed literature. TERESA attempted to delineate health effects of primary particles, secondary (aged) particles, and mixtures of these with common atmospheric constituents. The study involved withdrawal of emissions directly from power plant stacks, followed by aging and atmospheric transformation of emissions in a mobile laboratory in a manner that simulated downwind power plant plume processing. Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) derived from the biogenic volatile organic compound {alpha}-pinene was added in some experiments, and in others ammonia was added to neutralize strong acidity. Specifically, four scenarios were studied at each plant: primary particles (P); secondary (oxidized) particles (PO); oxidized particles + secondary organic aerosol (SOA) (POS); and oxidized and neutralized particles + SOA (PONS). Extensive exposure characterization was carried out, including gas-phase and particulate species. Male Sprague Dawley rats were exposed for 6 hours to filtered air or different atmospheric mixtures. Toxicological endpoints included (1) breathing pattern; (2) bronchoalveolar lavage

  11. Development of a versatile experimental setup for the evaluation of the photocatalytic properties of construction materials under realistic outdoor conditions.

    PubMed

    Suárez, S; Portela, R; Hernández-Alonso, M D; Sánchez, B

    2014-10-01

    samples at the same time. The suitability of the system for the evaluation of the DeNO x properties of construction elements at realistic outdoor conditions was demonstrated. The designed experimental device can be used 24/7 for testing materials under real fluctuations of NO x concentration, temperature, UV irradiation, and relative humidity and the presence of other outdoor air pollutants such as VOCs, SO x , or NH3. The chamber-based design allows comparing a photocatalytic material with respect to a reference substrate without the photoactive phase, or even the comparison of several outdoor elements at the same time. PMID:24652575

  12. Evaluation of semidecentralized emergency drinking water treatment.

    PubMed

    Eloidin, Océane; Dorea, Caetano C

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluates the potential for a novel semidecentralized approach that uses coagulant disinfectant products (CDPs) for humanitarian water treatment, by testing two commercially available products (CDP-W and CDP-T). Their performances were evaluated against the relevant water quality treatment objectives (The Sphere Project) under laboratory conditions, using a standardized testing protocol with both synthetic and natural surface test waters. Tests indicated a satisfactory performance by one of the products (CDP-W) with respect to humanitarian water quality objectives, (i.e., free chlorine residual, pH, and turbidity) that was dependent on initial water quality characteristics. Adequate bacterial inactivation (final thermotolerant coliform concentration of < 1 cfu/100 mL) was always attained and log reductions of up to 5 were achieved. The other product (CDP-T) did not exhibit any measurable coagulation and disinfection properties, indicating the variability of product quality and the need to conduct evaluations such as the ones presented in this study. Such results are of relevance to relief agencies delivering water supply interventions. PMID:26121019

  13. An Emerging Model for Student Feedback: Electronic Distributed Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brunk-Chavez, Beth; Arrigucci, Annette

    2012-01-01

    In this article we address several issues and challenges that the evaluation of writing presents individual instructors and composition programs as a whole. We present electronic distributed evaluation, or EDE, as an emerging model for feedback on student writing and describe how it was integrated into our program's course redesign. Because the…

  14. Towards a Holistic Framework for the Evaluation of Emergency Plans in Indoor Environments

    PubMed Central

    Serrano, Emilio; Poveda, Geovanny; Garijo, Mercedes

    2014-01-01

    One of the most promising fields for ambient intelligence is the implementation of intelligent emergency plans. Because the use of drills and living labs cannot reproduce social behaviors, such as panic attacks, that strongly affect these plans, the use of agent-based social simulation provides an approach to evaluate these plans more thoroughly. (1) The hypothesis presented in this paper is that there has been little interest in describing the key modules that these simulators must include, such as formally represented knowledge and a realistic simulated sensor model, and especially in providing researchers with tools to reuse, extend and interconnect modules from different works. This lack of interest hinders researchers from achieving a holistic framework for evaluating emergency plans and forces them to reconsider and to implement the same components from scratch over and over. In addition to supporting this hypothesis by considering over 150 simulators, this paper: (2) defines the main modules identified and proposes the use of semantic web technologies as a cornerstone for the aforementioned holistic framework; (3) provides a basic methodology to achieve the framework; (4) identifies the main challenges; and (5) presents an open and free software tool to hint at the potential of such a holistic view of emergency plan evaluation in indoor environments. PMID:24662453

  15. Towards a holistic framework for the evaluation of emergency plans in indoor environments.

    PubMed

    Serrano, Emilio; Poveda, Geovanny; Garijo, Mercedes

    2014-01-01

    One of the most promising fields for ambient intelligence is the implementation of intelligent emergency plans. Because the use of drills and living labs cannot reproduce social behaviors, such as panic attacks, that strongly affect these plans, the use of agent-based social simulation provides an approach to evaluate these plans more thoroughly. (1) The hypothesis presented in this paper is that there has been little interest in describing the key modules that these simulators must include, such as formally represented knowledge and a realistic simulated sensor model, and especially in providing researchers with tools to reuse, extend and interconnect modules from different works. This lack of interest hinders researchers from achieving a holistic framework for evaluating emergency plans and forces them to reconsider and to implement the same components from scratch over and over. In addition to supporting this hypothesis by considering over 150 simulators, this paper: (2) defines the main modules identified and proposes the use of semantic web technologies as a cornerstone for the aforementioned holistic framework; (3) provides a basic methodology to achieve the framework; (4) identifies the main challenges; and (5) presents an open and free software tool to hint at the potential of such a holistic view of emergency plan evaluation in indoor environments. PMID:24662453

  16. TOXICOLOGICAL EVALUATION OF REALISTIC EMISSIONS OF SOURCE AEROSOLS (TERESA): APPLICATION TO POWER PLANT-DERIVED PM2.5

    SciTech Connect

    Annette Rohr

    2004-12-02

    slightly higher. Exposure concentrations were about 249 {micro}g/m{sup 3} PM, of which 87 {micro}g/m{sup 3} was sulfate and approximately 110 {micro}g/m{sup 3} was secondary organic material ({approx}44%). Results indicated subtle differences in breathing pattern between exposed and control (sham) animals, but no differences in other endpoints (in vivo chemiluminescence, blood cytology, bronchoalveolar lavage fluid analysis). It was suspected that primary particle losses may have been occurring in the venturi aspirator/orifice sampler; therefore, the stack sampling system was redesigned. The modified system resulted in no substantial increase in particle concentration in the emissions, leading us to conclude that the electrostatic precipitator at the power plant has high efficiency, and that the sampled emissions are representative of those exiting the stack into the atmosphere. This is important, since the objective of the Project is to carry out exposures to realistic coal combustion-derived secondary PM arising from power plants. During the next reporting period, we will document and describe the remainder of the fieldwork at Plant 0, which we expect to be complete by mid-November 2004. This report will include detailed Phase I toxicological findings for all scenarios run, and Phase II toxicological findings for one selected scenario. Depending upon the outcome of the ongoing fieldwork at Plant 0 (i.e. the biological effects observed), not all the proposed scenarios may be evaluated. The next report is also expected to include preliminary field data for Plant 1, located in the Southeast.

  17. Can "realist" randomised controlled trials be genuinely realist?

    PubMed

    Van Belle, Sara; Wong, Geoff; Westhorp, Gill; Pearson, Mark; Emmel, Nick; Manzano, Ana; Marchal, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we respond to a paper by Jamal and colleagues published in Trials in October 2015 and take an opportunity to continue the much-needed debate about what applied scientific realism is. The paper by Jamal et al. is useful because it exposes the challenges of combining a realist evaluation approach (as developed by Pawson and Tilley) with the randomised controlled trial (RCT) design.We identified three fundamental differences that are related to paradigmatic differences in the treatment of causation between post-positivist and realist logic: (1) the construct of mechanism, (2) the relation between mediators and moderators on one hand and mechanisms and contexts on the other hand, and (3) the variable-oriented approach to analysis of causation versus the configurational approach.We show how Jamal et al. consider mechanisms as observable, external treatments and how their approach reduces complex causal processes to variables. We argue that their proposed RCT design cannot provide a truly realist understanding. Not only does the proposed realist RCT design not deal with the RCT's inherent inability to "unpack" complex interventions, it also does not enable the identification of the dynamic interplay among the intervention, actors, context, mechanisms and outcomes, which is at the core of realist research. As a result, the proposed realist RCT design is not, as we understand it, genuinely realist in nature. PMID:27387202

  18. The New Mexico School Nurse and Emergency Medical Services Emergency Preparedness Course: Program Description and Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elgie, Robert; Sapien, Robert E.; Fullerton-Gleason, Lynne

    2005-01-01

    Illness and injuries are common among students and school staff. Therefore, school nurses must be prepared. In this study, a 16-hour scenario-based emergency preparedness course for school nurses was evaluated for its effectiveness. Effectiveness was measured by (a) traditional methods (written exams and confidence surveys) and (b) skills and…

  19. Realist RCTs of complex interventions - an oxymoron.

    PubMed

    Marchal, Bruno; Westhorp, Gill; Wong, Geoff; Van Belle, Sara; Greenhalgh, Trisha; Kegels, Guy; Pawson, Ray

    2013-10-01

    Bonell et al. discuss the challenges of carrying out randomised controlled trials (RCTs) to evaluate complex interventions in public health, and consider the role of realist evaluation in enhancing this design (Bonell, Fletcher, Morton, Lorenc, & Moore, 2012). They argue for a "synergistic, rather than oppositional relationship between realist and randomised evaluation" and that "it is possible to benefit from the insights provided by realist evaluation without relinquishing the RCT as the best means of examining intervention causality." We present counter-arguments to their analysis of realist evaluation and their recommendations for realist RCTs. Bonell et al. are right to question whether and how (quasi-)experimental designs can be improved to better evaluate complex public health interventions. However, the paper does not explain how a research design that is fundamentally built upon a positivist ontological and epistemological position can be meaningfully adapted to allow it to be used from within a realist paradigm. The recommendations for "realist RCTs" do not sufficiently take into account important elements of complexity that pose major challenges for the RCT design. They also ignore key tenets of the realist evaluation approach. We propose that the adjective 'realist' should continue to be used only for studies based on a realist philosophy and whose analytic approach follows the established principles of realist analysis. It seems more correct to call the approach proposed by Bonell and colleagues 'theory informed RCT', which indeed can help in enhancing RCTs. PMID:23850482

  20. Evaluation of the Emergency Response Dose Assessment System(ERDAS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Evans, Randolph J.; Lambert, Winifred C.; Manobianco, John T.; Taylor, Gregory E.; Wheeler, Mark M.; Yersavich, Ann M.

    1996-01-01

    The emergency response dose assessment system (ERDAS) is a protype software and hardware system configured to produce routine mesoscale meteorological forecasts and enhanced dispersion estimates on an operational basis for the Kennedy Space Center (KSC)/Cape Canaveral Air Station (CCAS) region. ERDAS provides emergency response guidance to operations at KSC/CCAS in the case of an accidental hazardous material release or an aborted vehicle launch. This report describes the evaluation of ERDAS including: evaluation of sea breeze predictions, comparison of launch plume location and concentration predictions, case study of a toxic release, evaluation of model sensitivity to varying input parameters, evaluation of the user interface, assessment of ERDA's operational capabilities, and a comparison of ERDAS models to the ocean breeze dry gultch diffusion model.

  1. Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emissions of Source Aerosols (TERESA): Application to Power Plant-Derived PM2.5

    SciTech Connect

    Annette Rohr

    2004-02-29

    This report documents progress made on the subject project during the period of September 1, 2003 through February 28, 2004. The TERESA Study is designed to investigate the role played by specific emissions sources and components in the induction of adverse health effects by examining the relative toxicity of coal combustion and mobile source (gasoline and/or diesel engine) emissions and their oxidative products. The study involves on-site sampling, dilution, and aging of coal combustion emissions at three coal-fired power plants, as well as mobile source emissions, followed by animal exposures incorporating a number of toxicological endpoints. The DOE-EPRI Cooperative Agreement (henceforth referred to as ''the Agreement'') for which this technical progress report has been prepared covers the analysis and interpretation of the field data collected at the first power plant (located in the Upper Midwest), followed by the performance and analysis of similar field experiments at two additional coal-fired power plants utilizing different coal types and with different plant configurations. Modifications to the original study design, which will improve the atmospheric aging component of the project and ensure that emissions are as realistic as possible, have resulted in project delays, and, at the time of report preparation, fieldwork at the Upper Midwest plant had not begun. However, such activities are imminent. This report therefore does not present data for activities covered by the Agreement, but does present results for the laboratory methods development work. This work is critical for the future success of the project. In particular, the atmospheric reaction simulation system is of paramount importance to the TERESA study design, since the basis for the toxicity assessment lies in the generation of realistic exposure atmospheres. The formation, composition, and toxicity of particles will be related to different atmospheric conditions and plume dilution scenarios

  2. Evaluation of a metabolic cotton seedling emergence model

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A model for cotton seedling emergence (MaGi) based on malate synthase kinetics was evaluated in the field at two locations, Lubbock and Big Spring, TX. Cotton, cvar. DP 444, was planted through the early spring and into typical planting times for the areas. Soil temperatures at seed depth was used a...

  3. Engineering Coronaviruses to Evaluate Emergence and Pathogenic Potential.

    PubMed

    Lau, Susanna K P; Woo, Patrick C Y

    2016-06-01

    A recent study provides a platform for generating infectious coronavirus genomes using sequence data, examining their capabilities of replicating in human cells and causing diseases in animal models, and evaluating therapeutics and vaccines. Similar approaches could be used to assess the potential of human emergence and pathogenicity for other viruses. PMID:27095615

  4. Evaluating phenological indicators for predicting giant foxtail (Setaria faberi) emergence

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We evaluated the use of ornamental plants as phenological indicators for predicting giant foxtail emergence, and compared their performance with predictions based upon calendar date, cumulative growing degree-days (GDD) and the WeedCast program. From 1997 to 2001, we monitored giant foxtail emergenc...

  5. Understanding the motivation and performance of community health volunteers involved in the delivery of health programmes in Kampala, Uganda: a realist evaluation protocol

    PubMed Central

    Vareilles, Gaëlle; Pommier, Jeanine; Kane, Sumit; Pictet, Gabriel; Marchal, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The recruitment of community health volunteers to support the delivery of health programmes is a well-established approach in many countries, particularly where health services are not readily available. However, studies on management of volunteers are scarce and current research on human resource management of volunteers faces methodological challenges. This paper presents the protocol of a realist evaluation that aims at identifying the factors influencing the performance of community health volunteers involved in the delivery of a Red Cross immunisation programme in Kampala (Uganda) with a specific focus on motivation. Methods and analysis The realist evaluation cycle structures the protocol. To develop the theoretical basis for the evaluation, the authors conducted interviews and reviewed the literature on community health volunteers’ performance, management and organisational behaviour. This led to the formulation of the initial programme theory, which links the intervention inputs (capacity-building strategies) to the expected outcomes (positive work behaviour) with mechanisms that point in the direction of drivers of motivation. The contextual elements include components such as organisational culture, resource availability, etc. A case study design will be adopted. We define a case as a Red Cross branch, run by a programme manager, and will select two cases at the district level in Kampala. Mixed methods will be used in data collection, including individual interviews of volunteers, participant observation and document review. The thematic analysis will be based on the initial programme theory and will seek for context-mechanism-outcome configurations. Findings from the two cases will be compared. Discussion We discuss the scope for applying realist evaluation and the methodological challenges we encountered in developing this protocol. Ethics and dissemination The study was approved by the Ethical Committee at Rennes University Hospital

  6. Avertable dose intervention applied in emergency response dose evaluation system for nuclear emergency preparedness in Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Chung-hsin; Teng, Jen-hsin; Yang, Yung-muh; Chang, Bor-jing

    2010-06-01

    In Taiwan the new guides for the nuclear emergency public protective action were laid down by the Atomic Energy Council (AEC) of Executive Yuan, Taiwan, ROC on July 15th, 2005. The main modifications of the guides are that the avertable dose is applied as the intervention levels and suggests the public protective actions. The emergency response dose evaluation system named RPDOSE, which was developed in 2005, was employed in this work to enhance the capability of the avertable dose evaluation for the villages in the emergency planning zone (EPZ). The period of the long-term weather forecasting data was extended from 4 to 8 days to satisfy the requirement of avertable dose computing. According to the intervention levels, the RPDOSE system is used to calculate the avertable dose and suggest appropriate public protective actions such as sheltering, evacuation or iodine prophylaxis as well as the proposed acting times for each village in the EPZ. This system was employed and examined in the annual nuclear emergency exercise of 2008 in the Maanshan nuclear power plant.

  7. Development of a realistic photonic modeling for the evaluation of infrared reflections in the metallic environment of ITER

    SciTech Connect

    Aumeunier, M.-H.; Travere, J.-M.

    2010-10-15

    In nuclear fusion experiments, the plasma facing components are exposed to high heat fluxes and infrared (IR) imaging diagnostics are routinely used for surveying their surface temperature for preventing damages. However the future use of metallic components in the ITER tokamak adds complications in temperature estimation. Indeed, low and variable emissivity of the observed surface and the multiple reflections of the light coming from hot regions will have to be understood and then taken into account. In this paper, a realistic photonic modeling based on Monte Carlo ray-tracing codes is used to predict the global response of the complete IR survey system. This also includes the complex vessel geometry and the thermal and optical surface properties using the bidirectional reflectivity distribution function that models the photon-material interactions. The first results of this simulation applied to a reference torus are presented and are used as a benchmark to investigate the validity of the global model. Finally the most critical key model parameters in the reflected signals are identified and their contribution is discussed.

  8. Diversion to the mental health system: emergency psychiatric evaluations.

    PubMed

    Janofsky, Jeffrey S; Tamburello, Anthony C

    2006-01-01

    In Maryland, any citizen may petition to have individuals brought against their will for an examination by a physician. In this retrospective chart review, we evaluated the characteristics of 300 persons referred to the Johns Hopkins Hospital on emergency petitions. Sixty-one percent of petitions described individuals who made verbal or physical threats of self-harm. Forty-seven percent of the petitions described individuals who could have been arrested based on dangerousness to others or property, but were instead diverted to the emergency room for psychiatric evaluation. Although not promoted as a jail diversion program, this process has the potential to direct mentally ill citizens appropriately from the criminal justice system into the mental health system. Greater involvement of mental health professionals at all stages, including police training and participation in crisis response teams in the community, may improve this process. PMID:17032950

  9. What works in ‘real life’ to facilitate home deaths and fewer hospital admissions for those at end of life?: results from a realist evaluation of new palliative care services in two English counties

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background We evaluated end of life care services in two English counties including: coordination centres, telephone advice line, ‘Discharge in Reach’ nurses, a specialist community personal care team and community nurse educators. Elsewhere, we published findings detailing high family carer satisfaction and fewer hospital admissions, Accident and Emergency attendances and hospital deaths for service users compared to controls. The aim of this paper is to discuss what contributed to those outcomes. Methods Using realist evaluation, data collection included documentation (e.g. referral databases), 15 observations of services and interviews with 43 family carers and 105 professionals. Data were analysed using framework analysis, applying realist evaluation concepts. Findings were discussed at successive team meetings and further data was collected until team consensus was reached. Results Services ‘worked’ primarily for those with cancer with ‘fast track’ funding who were close to death. Factors contributing to success included services staffed with experienced palliative care professionals with dedicated (and sufficient) time for difficult conversations with family carers, patients and/or clinical colleagues about death and the practicalities of caring for the dying. Using their formal and informal knowledge of the local healthcare system, they accessed community resources to support homecare and delivered excellent services. This engendered confidence and reassurance for staff, family carers and patients, possibly contributing to less hospital admissions and A&E attendances and more home deaths. Conclusions With demand for 24-hour end of life care growing and care provision fragmented across health and social care boundaries, services like these that cut across organisational sectors may become more important. They offer an overview to help navigate those desiring a home death through the system. PMID:25075202

  10. The Development and Initial Evaluation of a Realistic Simulated SPECT Dataset with Simultaneous Respiratory and Cardiac Motion for Gated Myocardial Perfusion SPECT

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Taek-Soo; Tsui, Benjamin M. W.

    2015-01-01

    We developed a realistic simulation dataset for simultaneous respiratory and cardiac (R&C) gated SPECT/CT using the 4D NURBS-based Cardiac-Torso (NCAT) Phantom and Monte Carlo simulation methods, and evaluated it for a sample application study. The 4D NCAT phantom included realistic respiratory motion and beating heart motion based on respiratory gated CT and cardiac tagged MRI data of normal human subjects. To model the respiratory motion, a set of 24 separate 3D NCAT phantoms excluding the heart was generated over a respiratory cycle. The beating heart motion was modelled separately with 48 frames per cardiac cycle for each of the 24 respiratory phases. The resultant set of 24×48 3D NCAT phantoms provides a realistic model of a normal human subject at different phases of combined R&C motions. An almost noise-free SPECT projection dataset for each of the 1,152 3D NCAT phantoms was generated using Monte Carlo simulation techniques and the radioactivity uptake distribution of 99mTc sestamibi in different organs. By grouping and summing the separate projection datasets, separate or simultaneous R&C gated acquired data with different gating schemes could be simulated. In the initial evaluation, we combined the projection datasets into no gating, 6 respiratory-gates only, 8 cardiac-gates only, and combined 6 respiratory-gates & 8 cardiac-gates projection datasets. Each dataset was reconstructed using 3D OS-EM without and with attenuation correction using the averaged and respiratory-gated attenuation maps, and the resulting reconstructed images were compared. These results were used to demonstrate the effects of R&C motions and the reduction of image artifact due to R&C motions by gating and attenuation corrections. We concluded that the realistic 4D NCAT phantom and Monte Carlo simulated SPECT projection datasets with R&C motions are powerful tools in the study of the effects of R&C motions, as well as in the development of R&C gating schemes and motion correction

  11. The development and initial evaluation of a realistic simulated SPECT dataset with simultaneous respiratory and cardiac motion for gated myocardial perfusion SPECT.

    PubMed

    Lee, Taek-Soo; Tsui, Benjamin M W

    2015-02-21

    We developed a realistic simulation dataset for simultaneous respiratory and cardiac (R&C) gated SPECT/CT using the 4D NURBS-based Cardiac-Torso (NCAT) Phantom and Monte Carlo simulation methods, and evaluated it for a sample application study. The 4D NCAT phantom included realistic respiratory motion and beating heart motion based on respiratory gated CT and cardiac tagged MRI data of normal human subjects. To model the respiratory motion, a set of 24 separate 3D NCAT phantoms excluding the heart was generated over a respiratory cycle. The beating heart motion was modeled separately with 48 frames per cardiac cycle for each of the 24 respiratory phases. The resultant set of 24  ×  48 3D NCAT phantoms provides a realistic model of a normal human subject at different phases of combined R&C motions. An almost noise-free SPECT projection dataset for each of the 1152 3D NCAT phantoms was generated using Monte Carlo simulation techniques and the radioactivity uptake distribution of (99m)Tc sestamibi in different organs. By grouping and summing the separate projection datasets, separate or simultaneous R&C gated acquired data with different gating schemes could be simulated. In the initial evaluation, we combined the projection datasets into ungated, 6 respiratory-gates only, 8 cardiac-gates only, and combined 6 respiratory-gates & 8 cardiac-gates projection datasets. Each dataset was reconstructed using 3D OS-EM without and with attenuation correction using the averaged and respiratory-gated attenuation maps, and the resulting reconstructed images were compared. These results were used to demonstrate the effects of R&C motions and the reduction of image artifact due to R&C motions by gating and attenuation corrections. We concluded that the realistic 4D NCAT phantom and Monte Carlo simulated SPECT projection datasets with R&C motions are powerful tools in the study of the effects of R&C motions, as well as in the development of R&C gating schemes and motion

  12. The development and initial evaluation of a realistic simulated SPECT dataset with simultaneous respiratory and cardiac motion for gated myocardial perfusion SPECT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Taek-Soo; Tsui, Benjamin M. W.

    2015-02-01

    We developed a realistic simulation dataset for simultaneous respiratory and cardiac (R&C) gated SPECT/CT using the 4D NURBS-based Cardiac-Torso (NCAT) Phantom and Monte Carlo simulation methods, and evaluated it for a sample application study. The 4D NCAT phantom included realistic respiratory motion and beating heart motion based on respiratory gated CT and cardiac tagged MRI data of normal human subjects. To model the respiratory motion, a set of 24 separate 3D NCAT phantoms excluding the heart was generated over a respiratory cycle. The beating heart motion was modeled separately with 48 frames per cardiac cycle for each of the 24 respiratory phases. The resultant set of 24  ×  48 3D NCAT phantoms provides a realistic model of a normal human subject at different phases of combined R&C motions. An almost noise-free SPECT projection dataset for each of the 1152 3D NCAT phantoms was generated using Monte Carlo simulation techniques and the radioactivity uptake distribution of 99mTc sestamibi in different organs. By grouping and summing the separate projection datasets, separate or simultaneous R&C gated acquired data with different gating schemes could be simulated. In the initial evaluation, we combined the projection datasets into ungated, 6 respiratory-gates only, 8 cardiac-gates only, and combined 6 respiratory-gates & 8 cardiac-gates projection datasets. Each dataset was reconstructed using 3D OS-EM without and with attenuation correction using the averaged and respiratory-gated attenuation maps, and the resulting reconstructed images were compared. These results were used to demonstrate the effects of R&C motions and the reduction of image artifact due to R&C motions by gating and attenuation corrections. We concluded that the realistic 4D NCAT phantom and Monte Carlo simulated SPECT projection datasets with R&C motions are powerful tools in the study of the effects of R&C motions, as well as in the development of R&C gating schemes and motion

  13. Information technology model for evaluating emergency medicine teaching

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vorbach, James; Ryan, James

    1996-02-01

    This paper describes work in progress to develop an Information Technology (IT) model and supporting information system for the evaluation of clinical teaching in the Emergency Medicine (EM) Department of North Shore University Hospital. In the academic hospital setting student physicians, i.e. residents, and faculty function daily in their dual roles as teachers and students respectively, and as health care providers. Databases exist that are used to evaluate both groups in either academic or clinical performance, but rarely has this information been integrated to analyze the relationship between academic performance and the ability to care for patients. The goal of the IT model is to improve the quality of teaching of EM physicians by enabling the development of integrable metrics for faculty and resident evaluation. The IT model will include (1) methods for tracking residents in order to develop experimental databases; (2) methods to integrate lecture evaluation, clinical performance, resident evaluation, and quality assurance databases; and (3) a patient flow system to monitor patient rooms and the waiting area in the Emergency Medicine Department, to record and display status of medical orders, and to collect data for analyses.

  14. Establishing Fair and Realistic Entry and Exit Criteria Using the General Evaluation Matrix (GEM), a Special Education Decision Making Tool.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maxwell, Kenneth G.

    The paper describes the development and use of a General Evaluation Matrix (GEM), a profile technique by which major handicaps are graphically presented along with school grades and achievements in basic skills. The approach lends itself to establishing entry level criteria for special education suited to the needs of specific communities.…

  15. Toxicological Evaluation of Realistic Emission Source Aerosols (TERESA)—Power plant studies: assessment of breathing pattern

    PubMed Central

    Diaz, Edgar A.; Lemos, Miriam; Coull, Brent; Long, Mark S.; Rohr, Annette C.; Ruiz, Pablo; Gupta, Tarun; Kang, Choong-Min; Godleski, John J.

    2013-01-01

    Our approach to study multi-pollutant aerosols isolates a single emissions source, evaluates the toxicity of primary and secondary particles derived from this source, and simulates chemical reactions that occur in the atmosphere after emission. Three U.S. coal-fired power plants utilizing different coals and with different emission controls were evaluated. Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) derived from α-pinene and/or ammonia was added in some experiments. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed for 6 h to filtered air or different atmospheric mixtures. Scenarios studied at each plant included the following: primary particles (P); secondary (oxidized) particles (PO); oxidized particles + SOA (POS); and oxidized and neutralized particles + SOA (PONS); additional control scenarios were also studied. Continuous respiratory data were obtained during exposures using whole body plethysmography chambers. Of the 12 respiratory outcomes assessed, each had statistically significant changes at some plant and with some of the 4 scenarios. The most robust outcomes were found with exposure to the PO scenario (increased respiratory frequency with decreases in inspiratory and expiratory time); and the PONS scenario (decreased peak expiratory flow and expiratory flow at 50%). PONS findings were most strongly associated with ammonium, neutralized sulfate, and elemental carbon (EC) in univariate analyses, but only with EC in multivariate analyses. Control scenario O (oxidized without primary particles) had similar changes to PO. Adjusted R2 analyses showed that scenario was a better predictor of respiratory responses than individual components, suggesting that the complex atmospheric mixture was responsible for respiratory effects. PMID:21639693

  16. Understanding the motivation and performance of community health volunteers involved in the delivery of health programmes in Kampala, Uganda: a realist evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Vareilles, Gaëlle; Marchal, Bruno; Kane, Sumit; Petrič, Taja; Pictet, Gabriel; Pommier, Jeanine

    2015-01-01

    Objectives This paper presents the results of a realist evaluation that aimed to understand how, why and under what circumstances a Red Cross (RC) capacity-building intervention influences the motivation and the performance of RC community health volunteers involved in the delivery of an immunisation programme in Kampala, Uganda. Method Given the complexity of the intervention, we adopted realist evaluation as our methodological approach and the case study as our study design. Data collection included document review, participant observation and interviews. The constant comparative method was used for the analysis. Two contrasted cases were selected within the five Kampala districts. Each case covers the management of the immunisation programme implemented at a RC branch. In each case, a programme manager and 15 RC volunteers were interviewed. The selection of the volunteers was purposive. Results We found that a capacity-building programme including supervision supportive of autonomy, skills and knowledge enhancement, and adapted to the different subgroups of volunteers, leads to satisfaction of the three key drivers of volunteer motivation: feelings of autonomy, competence and connectedness. This contributes to higher retention, and better task performance and well-being among the volunteers. Enabling contextual conditions include the responsiveness of the Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS) to community needs, and recognition of the work of the volunteers, from the URCS and the community. Conclusions A management approach that caters for the different motivational states and changing needs of the volunteers will lead to better performance. The findings will inform not only the management of community health volunteers, but also the management of all kinds of health workers. PMID:26525721

  17. 75 FR 22817 - Emerging Infectious Diseases: Evaluation to Implementation for Transfusion and Transplantation...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-04-30

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Emerging Infectious Diseases: Evaluation to Implementation... Infectious Diseases: Evaluation to Implementation for Transfusion and Transplantation Safety'' (EID public... of risk from, and prioritization of response to, emerging infectious diseases relevant to...

  18. An evaluation into the efficiency and effectiveness of machine learning algorithms in realistic traffic pattern prediction using field data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ekedebe, Nnanna; Yu, Wei; Lu, Chao; Moulema, Paul

    2015-05-01

    Accurate and timely knowledge is critical in intelligent transportation system (ITS) as it leads to improved traffic flow management. The knowledge of the past can be useful for the future as traffic patterns normally follow a predictable pattern with respect to time of day, and day of week. In this paper, we systematically evaluated the prediction accuracy and speed of several supervised machine learning algorithms towards congestion identification based on six weeks real-world traffic data from August 1st, 2012 to September 12th, 2012 in the Maryland (MD)/Washington DC, and Virginia (VA) area. Our dataset consists of six months traffic data pattern from July 1, 2012 to December 31, 2012, of which 6 weeks was used as a representative sample for the purposes of this study on our reference roadway - I-270. Our experimental data shows that with respect to classification, classification tree (Ctree) could provide the best prediction accuracy with an accuracy rate of 100% and prediction speed of 0.34 seconds. It is pertinent to note that variations exist respecting prediction accuracy and prediction speed; hence, a tradeoff is often necessary respecting the priority of the applications in question. It is also imperative to note from the outset that, algorithm design and calibration are important factors in determining their effectiveness.

  19. Evaluation of a micro-scale wind model's performance over realistic building clusters using wind tunnel experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ning; Du, Yunsong; Miao, Shiguang; Fang, Xiaoyi

    2016-08-01

    The simulation performance over complex building clusters of a wind simulation model (Wind Information Field Fast Analysis model, WIFFA) in a micro-scale air pollutant dispersion model system (Urban Microscale Air Pollution dispersion Simulation model, UMAPS) is evaluated using various wind tunnel experimental data including the CEDVAL (Compilation of Experimental Data for Validation of Micro-Scale Dispersion Models) wind tunnel experiment data and the NJU-FZ experiment data (Nanjing University-Fang Zhuang neighborhood wind tunnel experiment data). The results show that the wind model can reproduce the vortexes triggered by urban buildings well, and the flow patterns in urban street canyons and building clusters can also be represented. Due to the complex shapes of buildings and their distributions, the simulation deviations/discrepancies from the measurements are usually caused by the simplification of the building shapes and the determination of the key zone sizes. The computational efficiencies of different cases are also discussed in this paper. The model has a high computational efficiency compared to traditional numerical models that solve the Navier-Stokes equations, and can produce very high-resolution (1-5 m) wind fields of a complex neighborhood scale urban building canopy (~ 1 km ×1 km) in less than 3 min when run on a personal computer.

  20. Evaluation of the dentists' knowledge on medical urgency and emergency.

    PubMed

    Stafuzza, Tássia Carina; Carrara, Cleide Felício Carvalho; Oliveira, Fernanda Veronese; Santos, Carlos Ferreira; Oliveira, Thais Marchini

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed at evaluating how well dentists understand medical emergency/urgency procedures and issues during dental treatment at a hospital specialized in cleft lip and palate. It comprised a hundred dentists from the Hospital for Rehabilitation of Craniofacial Anomalies, University of São Paulo (HRAC/USP), Brazil, from different dental specialties. A questionnaire was applied to evaluate their knowledge of medical emergencies/urgencies from June through September 2011. The questionnaire was anonymous, confidential and constructed with closed questions and either yes-no or multiple-choice responses. Results showed that most professionals (87%) were trained in basic life support (BLS), but only 43% considered themselves capable of providing first aid and performing the necessary maneuvers. Most participants (94%) claimed that they knew the difference between medical urgencies and emergencies, and 69% had BLS training in their undergraduate courses, as opposed to 37%, during their specialization. Some participants (23%) mentioned that they had received knowledge of the subject during extracurricular courses and/or graduate courses (12%). Only 9% had not been educated on the subject; however, all participants showed interest in attending a course in BLS. In regard to assessing training that dentists who attended BLS courses received, 49% were satisfied and 42% were dissatisfied. Results of the present study emphasize that dentists from HRAC/USP have little knowledge about BLS procedures to perform them. Dentists must gain adequate education and training to minimize possible technical, ethical and legal problems associated with dental practice. It is necessary to improve both knowledge and practice in order to become well-qualified practitioners. PMID:25141014

  1. TOXICOLOGICAL EVALUATION OF REALISTIC EMISSIONS OF SOURCE AEROSOLS (TERESA): APPLICATION TO POWER PLANT-DERIVED PM2.5

    SciTech Connect

    Annette Rohr

    2005-03-31

    emissions were performed. Stage I toxicological assessments were carried out in Sprague-Dawley rats. Biological endpoints included breathing pattern/pulmonary function; in vivo chemiluminescence (an indicator of oxidative stress); blood cytology; bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid analysis; and histopathology. No significant differences between exposed animals and sham animals (exposed to filtered air) were observed for any of the endpoints; histopathological results are pending and will be reported in the next semiannual report. The scenarios evaluated during this reporting period were slightly modified from those originally proposed. We substituted a new scenario, secondary aerosol + SOA, to investigate the effects of a strongly acidic aerosol with a biogenic component. Since we did not observe any biological response to this scenario, the neutralized secondary aerosol scenario (i.e., oxidized emissions + ammonia) was deemed unnecessary. Moreover, in light of the lack of response observed in the Stage I assessment, it was decided that a Stage II assessment (evaluation of cardiac function in a compromised rat model) was unlikely to provide useful information. However, this model will be employed at Plant 1 and/or 2. During this reporting period, significant progress was made in planning for fieldwork at Plant 1. Stack sampling was carried out at the plant in mid-December to determine the concentration of primary particles. It was found that PM{sub 2.5} mass concentrations were approximately three times higher than those observed at Plant 0. In mid-February, installation and setup for the mobile laboratories began. Animal exposures are scheduled to begin at this plant on March 21, 2005. During the next reporting period, we will initiate fieldwork at Plant 1. At either or both Plants 1 and 2, a detailed Stage II assessment will be performed, even if no significant findings are observed in Stage I. The next semiannual report is expected to include a detailed description of

  2. Can a sustainability and health scenario provide a realistic challenge to student nurses and provoke changes in practice? An evaluation of a training intervention.

    PubMed

    Grose, J; Richardson, J

    2016-06-01

    Climate change and limited natural resources will impact on the sustainable supply and disposal of materials used in health care. Healthcare students need opportunities to reflect on the ecological footprint of health services to mitigate against negative effects on service delivery. In order to raise awareness of these issues, there is a need for evidence-based teaching tools which are relevant and meaningful to nursing practice. An evidence-based sustainability skills teaching session was delivered to 293 nursing students from child and adult health disciplines. Following the sessions, evaluation sheets were distributed to the participants, of which 290 responded. The majority of nurses valued both the delivery and the content of the training and some were motivated to complete further study. The evaluation provided valuable information on how to deliver sustainability education and important insights into where more information and support was needed in order to change practice. Embedding sustainability teaching in skill sessions appears to be a realistic way of informing and motivating learners to consider current and best practice. Following training, further evaluation of practice-based behaviour is needed. PMID:26354719

  3. Evaluation of phytotoxicity and ecotoxicity potentials of a cyanobacterial extract containing microcystins under realistic environmental concentrations and in a soil-plant system.

    PubMed

    Corbel, Sylvain; Mougin, Christian; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Crouzet, Olivier; Bru, David; Nélieu, Sylvie; Bouaïcha, Noureddine

    2015-06-01

    The impact of a crude extract of Microcystis aeruginosa (PCC7820) containing 14 microcystin variants was investigated on seeds germination and radicles development of four agricultural plants: two tomato varieties Solanum lycopersicum (MicroTom and Saint-Pierre), the wheat Triticum aestivum and the lettuce Lactuca sativa. In addition, the effect of 14 d-exposure to irrigation water containing realistic concentrations of microcystins (0-0.1 mg eq. microcystin-LRL(-1)) on the tomato MicroTom seedling growth was further evaluated on roots and aerial part biomasses. Impacts on soil bacterial parameters, as such extracellular enzymatic activities, nitrification activity and abundances of ammonia-oxidizing microorganisms were also investigated. In germination-test, the cyanobacterial extract inhibited only the germination of the wheat seeds, with an EC50 of 11 mg eq. microcystin-LRL(-1); which is 13 times lower than that of the cadmium chloride (EC50 of 145 mg L(-1)). Moreover, the cyanobacterial extract containing low concentrations of microcystins increased the growth of primary roots; however, high concentrations decreased it for all plants except for the wheat. In the soil-plant approach, only aerial part biomass of the tomato MicroTom was enhanced significantly. In addition, only soil nitrification potential and ammonia-oxidizing bacterial abundances were consistently impacted. A significant positive correlation (r=0.56) was found between the increase of nitrification potential and abundances of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria. This work suggested, that exposure to a cyanobacterial extract containing realistic environmental microcystins concentrations could affect seed germination, depending plant species. It was also highlighted, for the first time, disturbances in soil bacteria functioning, evidences on soil nitrification process. PMID:25754013

  4. Performance evaluation of two emerging media processors: VIRAM and imagine

    SciTech Connect

    Oliker, Leonid; Duell, Jason; Narayanan, Manikandan; Chatterji, Sourav

    2003-01-01

    This work presents two emerging media microprocessors, VIRAM and Imagine, and compares the implementation strategies and performance results of these unique architectures. VIRAM is a complete system on a chip which uses PIM technology to combine vector processing with embedded DRAM. Imagine is a programmable streaming architecture with a specialized memory hierarchy designed for computationally intensive data-parallel codes. First, we present a simple and effective approach for understanding and optimizing vector/stream applications. Performance results are then presented from a number of multimedia benchmarks and a computationally intensive scientific kernel. We explore the complex interact ions between programming paradigms, the architectural support at the ISA lever and the underlying microarchitecture of these two systems. Our long term goal is to evaluate leading media microprocessors as possible building blocks for future high performance systems.

  5. Evaluation of quantitative imaging methods for organ activity and residence time estimation using a population of phantoms having realistic variations in anatomy and uptake

    SciTech Connect

    He Bin; Du Yong; Segars, W. Paul; Wahl, Richard L.; Sgouros, George; Jacene, Heather; Frey, Eric C.

    2009-02-15

    Estimating organ residence times is an essential part of patient-specific dosimetry for radioimmunotherapy (RIT). Quantitative imaging methods for RIT are often evaluated using a single physical or simulated phantom but are intended to be applied clinically where there is variability in patient anatomy, biodistribution, and biokinetics. To provide a more relevant evaluation, the authors have thus developed a population of phantoms with realistic variations in these factors and applied it to the evaluation of quantitative imaging methods both to find the best method and to demonstrate the effects of these variations. Using whole body scans and SPECT/CT images, organ shapes and time-activity curves of 111In ibritumomab tiuxetan were measured in dosimetrically important organs in seven patients undergoing a high dose therapy regimen. Based on these measurements, we created a 3D NURBS-based cardiac-torso (NCAT)-based phantom population. SPECT and planar data at realistic count levels were then simulated using previously validated Monte Carlo simulation tools. The projections from the population were used to evaluate the accuracy and variation in accuracy of residence time estimation methods that used a time series of SPECT and planar scans. Quantitative SPECT (QSPECT) reconstruction methods were used that compensated for attenuation, scatter, and the collimator-detector response. Planar images were processed with a conventional (CPlanar) method that used geometric mean attenuation and triple-energy window scatter compensation and a quantitative planar (QPlanar) processing method that used model-based compensation for image degrading effects. Residence times were estimated from activity estimates made at each of five time points. The authors also evaluated hybrid methods that used CPlanar or QPlanar time-activity curves rescaled to the activity estimated from a single QSPECT image. The methods were evaluated in terms of mean relative error and standard deviation of the

  6. Evaluation of quantitative imaging methods for organ activity and residence time estimation using a population of phantoms having realistic variations in anatomy and uptake

    PubMed Central

    He, Bin; Du, Yong; Segars, W. Paul; Wahl, Richard L.; Sgouros, George; Jacene, Heather; Frey, Eric C.

    2009-01-01

    Estimating organ residence times is an essential part of patient-specific dosimetry for radioimmunotherapy (RIT). Quantitative imaging methods for RIT are often evaluated using a single physical or simulated phantom but are intended to be applied clinically where there is variability in patient anatomy, biodistribution, and biokinetics. To provide a more relevant evaluation, the authors have thus developed a population of phantoms with realistic variations in these factors and applied it to the evaluation of quantitative imaging methods both to find the best method and to demonstrate the effects of these variations. Using whole body scans and SPECT∕CT images, organ shapes and time-activity curves of 111In ibritumomab tiuxetan were measured in dosimetrically important organs in seven patients undergoing a high dose therapy regimen. Based on these measurements, we created a 3D NURBS-based cardiac-torso (NCAT)-based phantom population. SPECT and planar data at realistic count levels were then simulated using previously validated Monte Carlo simulation tools. The projections from the population were used to evaluate the accuracy and variation in accuracy of residence time estimation methods that used a time series of SPECT and planar scans. Quantitative SPECT (QSPECT) reconstruction methods were used that compensated for attenuation, scatter, and the collimator-detector response. Planar images were processed with a conventional (CPlanar) method that used geometric mean attenuation and triple-energy window scatter compensation and a quantitative planar (QPlanar) processing method that used model-based compensation for image degrading effects. Residence times were estimated from activity estimates made at each of five time points. The authors also evaluated hybrid methods that used CPlanar or QPlanar time-activity curves rescaled to the activity estimated from a single QSPECT image. The methods were evaluated in terms of mean relative error and standard deviation of

  7. Evaluation of quantitative imaging methods for organ activity and residence time estimation using a population of phantoms having realistic variations in anatomy and uptake.

    PubMed

    He, Bin; Du, Yong; Segars, W Paul; Wahl, Richard L; Sgouros, George; Jacene, Heather; Frey, Eric C

    2009-02-01

    Estimating organ residence times is an essential part of patient-specific dosimetry for radioimmunotherapy (RIT). Quantitative imaging methods for RIT are often evaluated using a single physical or simulated phantom but are intended to be applied clinically where there is variability in patient anatomy, biodistribution, and biokinetics. To provide a more relevant evaluation, the authors have thus developed a population of phantoms with realistic variations in these factors and applied it to the evaluation of quantitative imaging methods both to find the best method and to demonstrate the effects of these variations. Using whole body scans and SPECT/CT images, organ shapes and time-activity curves of 111In ibritumomab tiuxetan were measured in dosimetrically important organs in seven patients undergoing a high dose therapy regimen. Based on these measurements, we created a 3D NURBS-based cardiac-torso (NCAT)-based phantom population. SPECT and planar data at realistic count levels were then simulated using previously validated Monte Carlo simulation tools. The projections from the population were used to evaluate the accuracy and variation in accuracy of residence time estimation methods that used a time series of SPECT and planar scans, Quantitative SPECT (QSPECT) reconstruction methods were used that compensated for attenuation, scatter, and the collimator-detector response. Planar images were processed with a conventional (CPlanar) method that used geometric mean attenuation and triple-energy window scatter compensation and a quantitative planar (QPlanar) processing method that used model-based compensation for image degrading effects. Residence times were estimated from activity estimates made at each of five time points. The authors also evaluated hybrid methods that used CPlanar or QPlanar time-activity curves rescaled to the activity estimated from a single QSPECT image. The methods were evaluated in terms of mean relative error and standard deviation of the

  8. Evaluation of Rugged Wireless Mesh Nodes for Use In Emergency Response

    SciTech Connect

    Kevin L Young; Alan M Snyder

    2007-11-01

    During the summer of 2007, engineers at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) conducted a two-day evaluation of commercially available battery powered, wireless, self-forming mesh nodes for use in emergency response. In this paper, the author describes the fundamentals of this emerging technology, applciations for emergency response and specific results of the technology evaluation conducted at the Idaho National Laboratory.

  9. Emergency contraception: preliminary report of a demonstration and evaluation project.

    PubMed

    Petitti, D B; Harvey, S M; Preskill, D; Beckman, L J; Postlethwaite, D; Switzky, H; Sherman, C

    1998-01-01

    Kaiser Permanente Southern California and the Pacific Institute for Women's Health began a demonstration and evaluation project on emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs) in the summer of 1996 with the goal of evaluating the feasibility and acceptability of ECPs in a large health maintenance organization and developing institutional templates, provider training and patient education materials that could be used to replicate the project. The ECP program had six components: repackaging of oral contraceptives in an ECP "kit," development of provider education materials, development of patient education materials, in-service training, making ECPs kits available in convenient locations, and development of materials to support replication of the project inside and outside Kaiser Permanente. Although data are still being analyzed, preliminary results are promising. The success of the project within this relatively conservative, but well-established medical care organization provides a model for others. The development of a standard set of educational materials and approaches to implementation should facilitate dispensing ECPs in other settings. PMID:9859634

  10. How shall we examine and learn about public-private partnerships (PPPs) in the health sector? Realist evaluation of PPPs in Hong Kong.

    PubMed

    Wong, Eliza L Y; Yeoh, Eng-Kiong; Chau, Patsy Y K; Yam, Carrie H K; Cheung, Annie W L; Fung, Hong

    2015-12-01

    The World Health Organization advocates the goal of universal coverage of health systems to ensure that everyone can avail the services they need and are protected from the associated financial risks. Governments are increasingly engaging and interacting with the private sector in initiatives collectively referred to as public-private partnerships (PPPs) to enhance the capacity of health systems to meet this objective. Understanding the values that motivate partners and demonstrating commitment for building relationships were found to be key lessons in building effective PPPs; however there, remain many research gaps. This study focusses on the practice of PPPs at the inter-organisational (meso) level and interpersonal (micro) level in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). The influence of the structural components of different PPPs on stakeholder interpretation and actions, as well as the eventual outcomes of the PPPs, is examined, in terms of a realist evaluation, which applies a context-mechanism-outcome configuration as the research methodology. Seven key factors initiating commitment in a partnership, critical for sustainable PPPs, were identified as follows: (1) building of trust; (2) clearly defined objectives and roles; (3) time commitment; (4) transparency and candid information, particularly in relation to risk and benefit; (5) contract flexibility; (6) technical assistance or financial incentive behind procedural arrangements; and (7) the awareness and acceptability of structural changes related to responsibility and decisions (power and authority). PMID:26605970

  11. Realistic collective nuclear Hamiltonian

    SciTech Connect

    Dufour, M.; Zuker, A.P.

    1996-10-01

    The residual part of the realistic forces{emdash}obtained after extracting the monopole terms responsible for bulk properties{emdash}is strongly dominated by pairing and quadrupole interactions, with important {sigma}{tau}{center_dot}{sigma}{tau}, octupole, and hexadecapole contributions. Their forms retain the simplicity of the traditional pairing plus multipole models, while eliminating their flaws through a normalization mechanism dictated by a universal {ital A}{sup {minus}1/3} scaling. Coupling strengths and effective charges are calculated and shown to agree with empirical values. Comparisons between different realistic interactions confirm the claim that they are very similar. {copyright} {ital 1996 The American Physical Society.}

  12. Performance Evaluation of Emerging High Performance Computing Technologies using WRF

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newby, G. B.; Morton, D.

    2008-12-01

    The Arctic Region Supercomputing Center (ARSC) has evaluated multicore processors and other emerging processor technologies for a variety of high performance computing applications in the earth and space sciences, especially climate and weather applications. A flagship effort has been to assess dual core processor nodes on ARSC's Midnight supercomputer, in which two-socket systems were compared to eight-socket systems. Midnight is utilized for ARSC's twice-daily weather research and forecasting (WRF) model runs, available at weather.arsc.edu. Among other findings on Midnight, it was found that the Hypertransport system for interconnecting Opteron processors, memory, and other subsystems does not scale as well on eight-socket (sixteen processor) systems as well as two-socket (four processor) systems. A fundamental limitation is the cache snooping operation performed whenever a computational thread accesses main memory. This increases memory latency as the number of processor sockets increases. This is particularly noticeable on applications such as WRF that are primarily CPU-bound, versus applications that are bound by input/output or communication. The new Cray XT5 supercomputer at ARSC features quad core processors, and will host a variety of scaling experiments for WRF, CCSM4, and other models. Early results will be presented, including a series of WRF runs for Alaska with grid resolutions under 2km. ARSC will discuss a set of standardized test cases for the Alaska domain, similar to existing test cases for CONUS. These test cases will provide different configuration sizes and resolutions, suitable for single processors up to thousands. Beyond multi-core Opteron-based supercomputers, ARSC has examined WRF and other applications on additional emerging technologies. One such technology is the graphics processing unit, or GPU. The 9800-series nVidia GPU was evaluated with the cuBLAS software library. While in-socket GPUs might be forthcoming in the future, current

  13. Supporting Sustainable Markets Through Life Cycle Assessment: Evaluating emerging technologies, incorporating uncertainty and the consumer perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merugula, Laura

    As civilization's collective knowledge grows, we are met with the realization that human-induced physical and biological transformations influenced by exogenous psychosocial and economic factors affect virtually every ecosystem on the planet. Despite improvements in energy generation and efficiencies, demand of material goods and energy services increases with no sign of a slowing pace. Sustainable development requires a multi-prong approach that involves reshaping demand, consumer education, sustainability-oriented policy, and supply chain management that does not serve the expansionist mentality. Thus, decision support tools are needed that inform developers, consumers, and policy-makers for short-term and long-term planning. These tools should incorporate uncertainty through quantitative methods as well as qualitatively informing the nature of the model as imperfect but necessary and adequate. A case study is presented of the manufacture and deployment of utility-scale wind turbines evaluated for a proposed change in blade manufacturing. It provides the first life cycle assessment (LCA) evaluating impact of carbon nanofibers, an emerging material, proposed for integration to wind power generation systems as blade reinforcement. Few LCAs of nanoproducts are available in scientific literature due to research and development (R&D) for applications that continues to outpace R&D for environmental, health, and safety (EHS) and life cycle impacts. LCAs of emerging technologies are crucial for informing developers of potential impacts, especially where market growth is swift and dissipative. A second case study is presented that evaluates consumer choice between disposable and reusable beverage cups. While there are a few studies that attempt to make the comparison using LCA, none adequately address uncertainty, nor are they representative for the typical American consumer. By disaggregating U.S. power generation into 26 subregional grid production mixes and evaluating

  14. Realistic and Schematic Visuals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heuvelman, Ard

    1996-01-01

    A study examined three different visual formats (studio presenter only, realistic visuals, or schematic visuals) of an educational television program. Recognition and recall of the abstract subject matter were measured in 101 adult viewers directly after the program and 3 months later. The schematic version yielded better recall of the program,…

  15. Improving emergency department flow through Rapid Medical Evaluation unit

    PubMed Central

    Chartier, Lucas; Josephson, Timothy; Bates, Kathy; Kuipers, Meredith

    2015-01-01

    The Toronto Western Hospital is an academic hospital in Toronto, Canada, with an annual Emergency Department (ED) volume of 64,000 patients. Despite increases in patient volumes of almost six percent per annum over the last decade, there have been no commensurate increases in resources, infrastructure, and staffing. This has led to substantial increase in patient wait times, most specifically for those patients with lower acuity presentations. Despite requiring only minimal care, these patients contribute disproportionately to ED congestion, which can adversely impact resource utilization and quality of care for all patients. We undertook a retrospective evaluation of a quality improvement initiative aimed at improving wait times experienced by patients with lower acuity presentations. A rapid improvement event was organized by frontline workers to rapidly overhaul processes of care, leading to the creation of the Rapid Medical Evaluation (RME) unit – a new pathway of care for patients with lower acuity presentations. The RME unit was designed by re-purposing existing resources and re-assigning one physician and one nurse towards the specific care of these patients. We evaluated the performance of the RME unit through measurement of physician initial assessment (PIA) times and total length of stay (LOS) times for multiple groups of patients assigned to various ED care pathways, during three periods lasting three months each. Weekly measurements of mean and 90th percentile of PIA and LOS times showed special cause variation in all targeted patient groups. Of note, the patients seen in the RME unit saw their median PIA and LOS times decrease from 98min to 70min and from 165min to 130min, respectively, from baseline. Despite ever-growing numbers of patient visits, wait times for all patients with lower acuity presentations remained low, and wait times of patients with higher acuity presentations assigned to other ED care pathways were not adversely affected. By

  16. Investigating the organisational impacts of quality improvement: a protocol for a realist evaluation of improvement approaches drawing on the Resource Based View of the Firm

    PubMed Central

    Burton, Christopher R; Rycroft Malone, Jo; Robert, Glenn; Willson, Alan; Hopkins, Angela

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Little is understood about the role of quality improvement in enabling health organisations to survive and thrive in the contemporary context of financial and economic challenges. We will draw on the theoretical foundations of the ‘Resource Based View of the Firm’ (RBV) to develop insights into why health organisations engage in improvement work, how impacts are conceptualised, and ‘what works’ in delivering these impacts. Specifically, RBV theorises that the mix and use of resources across different organisations may explain differences in performance. Whether improvement work influences these resources is unclear. Methods and analysis Case study research will be conducted across health organisations participating in four approaches to improvement, including: a national improvement programme; a multiorganisational partnership around implementation; an organisational strategy for quality improvement; and a coproduction project designed to enhance the experience of a clinical service from the perspective of patients. Data will comprise in-depth interviews with key informants, observation of key events and documents; analysed within and then across cases. Adopting a realist perspective, the core tenets of RBV will be evaluated as a programme theory, focusing on the interplay between organisational conditions and behavioural or resource responses that are reported through engagement in improvement. Ethics and dissemination The study has been approved by Bangor University Ethics Committee. The investigation will not judge the relative merits of different approaches to healthcare quality improvement. Rather, we will develop unique insights into the organisational consequences, and dependencies of quality improvement, providing an opportunity to add to the explanatory potential of RBV in this and other contexts. In addition to scientific and lay reports of the study findings, research outputs will include a framework for constructing the economic

  17. Advancing the application of systems thinking in health: realist evaluation of the Leadership Development Programme for district manager decision-making in Ghana

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Although there is widespread agreement that strong district manager decision-making improves health systems, understanding about how the design and implementation of capacity-strengthening interventions work is limited. The Ghana Health Service has adopted the Leadership Development Programme (LDP) as one intervention to support the development of management and leadership within district teams. This paper seeks to address how and why the LDP ‘works’ when it is introduced into a district health system in Ghana, and whether or not it supports systems thinking in district teams. Methods We undertook a realist evaluation to investigate the outcomes, contexts, and mechanisms of the intervention. Building on two working hypotheses developed from our earlier work, we developed an explanatory case study of one rural district in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. Data collection included participant observation, document review, and semi-structured interviews with district managers prior to, during, and after the intervention. Working backwards from an in-depth analysis of the context and observed short- and medium-term outcomes, we drew a causal loop diagram to explain interactions between contexts, outcomes, and mechanisms. Results The LDP was a valuable experience for district managers and teams were able to attain short-term outcomes because the novel approach supported teamwork, initiative-building, and improved prioritisation. However, the LDP was not institutionalised in district teams and did not lead to increased systems thinking. This was related to the context of high uncertainty within the district, and hierarchical authority of the system, which triggered the LDP’s underlying goal of organisational control. Conclusions Consideration of organisational context is important when trying to sustain complex interventions, as it seems to influence the gap between short- and medium-term outcomes. More explicit focus on systems thinking principles that

  18. Low-severity Musculoskeletal Complaints Evaluated in the Emergency Department

    PubMed Central

    Mehta, Samir; Hollander, Judd E.; Shofer, Frances; Bernstein, Joseph

    2008-01-01

    Patients with musculoskeletal disorders represent a considerable percentage of emergency department volume. Although patients with acute or high-severity conditions are encouraged to seek care in the emergency department, patients with nonacute, low-severity conditions may be better served elsewhere. This study prospectively assessed patients presenting to the emergency department with nonacute, low-severity musculoskeletal conditions to test the hypothesis that these patients have access to care outside the emergency department. One thousand ten adult patients with a musculoskeletal complaint were identified, and a detailed questionnaire was completed by 862 (85.3%) during their emergency department stay. Three hundred fifty (40.6%) patients presented with nonacute, low-severity conditions. Patients with nonacute, low-severity problems were less likely to have a primary care physician (62.5% versus 72.3%) or to have medical insurance (82.5% versus 87.7%), but a majority had both (59.3%). Only 14.3% had neither. Forty-four percent of all patients with primary care physicians believed their primary care physician was incapable of managing musculoskeletal problems. Appropriate use of the emergency department by patients with musculoskeletal disorders may require not only increased access to insurance and primary care, but also improved public understanding of the scope of care offered by primary care physicians and the conflicting demands placed on emergency department providers. Level of Evidence: Level I, prognostic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence. PMID:18496728

  19. Simulation of realistic retinoscopic measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Bo; Chen, Ying-Ling; Baker, K.; Lewis, J. W.; Swartz, T.; Jiang, Y.; Wang, M.

    2007-03-01

    Realistic simulation of ophthalmic measurements on normal and diseased eyes is presented. We use clinical data of ametropic and keratoconus patients to construct anatomically accurate three-dimensional eye models and simulate the measurement of a streak retinoscope with all the optical elements. The results show the clinical observations including the anomalous motion in high myopia and the scissors reflex in keratoconus. The demonstrated technique can be applied to other ophthalmic instruments and to other and more extensively abnormal eye conditions. It provides promising features for medical training and for evaluating and developing ocular instruments.

  20. Realistic Solar Surface Convection Simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stein, Robert F.; Nordlund, Ake

    2000-01-01

    We perform essentially parameter free simulations with realistic physics of convection near the solar surface. We summarize the physics that is included and compare the simulation results with observations. Excellent agreement is obtained for the depth of the convection zone, the p-mode frequencies, the p-mode excitation rate, the distribution of the emergent continuum intensity, and the profiles of weak photospheric lines. We describe how solar convection is nonlocal. It is driven from a thin surface thermal boundary layer where radiative cooling produces low entropy gas which forms the cores of the downdrafts in which most of the buoyancy work occurs. We show that turbulence and vorticity are mostly confined to the intergranular lanes and underlying downdrafts. Finally, we illustrate our current work on magneto-convection.

  1. 1992 UPDATE OF U.S. EPA'S SUPERFUND INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY EVALUATION (SITE) EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Emerging Technology Program (ETP) has encouraged and financially supported further development of bench- and pilot-scale testing and evaluation of innovative technologies suitable for use at hazardous waste sites for five year...

  2. Time/Loss Analysis in the development and evaluation of emergency response procedures

    SciTech Connect

    Francis, A.A.

    1994-08-01

    Time/Loss Analysis (T/LA) provides a standard for conducting technically consistent and objective evaluations of emergency response planning and procedures. T/LA is also a sound tool for evaluating the performance of safeguards and procedures.

  3. Evaluation of a Tabletop Emergency Preparedness Exercise for Pharmacy Students.

    PubMed

    Pate, Adam; Bratberg, Jeffrey P; Robertson, Courtney; Smith, Gregory

    2016-04-25

    Objective. To describe the implementation and effect of an emergency preparedness laboratory activity on student knowledge, willingness to participate in emergency preparedness training, current level of preparedness, and the importance of a pharmacist's role in disaster response. Design. Second-year pharmacy students in the infectious disease module participated in a laboratory activity based on a basic disaster response tabletop exercise format. Three case-based scenarios involving infectious diseases were created by participating faculty members. Assessment. Surveys before and after the laboratory were used to assess the activity's effect on student knowledge, willingness to participate in emergency preparedness training, current level of preparedness, and the importance of a pharmacist's role in disaster response. In addition, the postsurvey assessed student perceptions of the activity's success at accomplishing faculty-specified outcomes from Appendix B of the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education's (ACPE) Standards. Conclusion. Implementation of an emergency response laboratory activity may improve overall students' knowledge of, confidence in, and understanding of their role as pharmacists in an emergency response, while incorporating a variety of skills and knowledge outcomes. PMID:27170821

  4. Evaluation of a Tabletop Emergency Preparedness Exercise for Pharmacy Students

    PubMed Central

    Bratberg, Jeffrey P.; Robertson, Courtney; Smith, Gregory

    2016-01-01

    Objective. To describe the implementation and effect of an emergency preparedness laboratory activity on student knowledge, willingness to participate in emergency preparedness training, current level of preparedness, and the importance of a pharmacist’s role in disaster response. Design. Second-year pharmacy students in the infectious disease module participated in a laboratory activity based on a basic disaster response tabletop exercise format. Three case-based scenarios involving infectious diseases were created by participating faculty members. Assessment. Surveys before and after the laboratory were used to assess the activity’s effect on student knowledge, willingness to participate in emergency preparedness training, current level of preparedness, and the importance of a pharmacist’s role in disaster response. In addition, the postsurvey assessed student perceptions of the activity’s success at accomplishing faculty-specified outcomes from Appendix B of the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education’s (ACPE) Standards. Conclusion. Implementation of an emergency response laboratory activity may improve overall students’ knowledge of, confidence in, and understanding of their role as pharmacists in an emergency response, while incorporating a variety of skills and knowledge outcomes. PMID:27170821

  5. A realistic lattice example

    SciTech Connect

    Courant, E.D.; Garren, A.A.

    1985-10-01

    A realistic, distributed interaction region (IR) lattice has been designed that includes new components discussed in the June 1985 lattice workshop. Unlike the test lattices, the lattice presented here includes utility straights and the mechanism for crossing the beams in the experimental straights. Moreover, both the phase trombones and the dispersion suppressors contain the same bending as the normal cells. Vertically separated beams and 6 Tesla, 1-in-1 magnets are assumed. Since the cells are 200 meters long, and have 60 degree phase advance, this lattice has been named RLD1, in analogy with the corresponding test lattice, TLD1. The quadrupole gradient is 136 tesla/meter in the cells, and has similar values in other quadrupoles except in those in the IR`s, where the maximum gradient is 245 tesla/meter. RLD1 has distributed IR`s; however, clustered realistic lattices can easily be assembled from the same components, as was recently done in a version that utilizes the same type of experimental and utility straights as those of RLD1.

  6. Retrospective evaluation of urological admissions to emergency service of a training and research hospital

    PubMed Central

    Topaktaş, Ramazan; Altın, Selçuk; Aydın, Cemil; Akkoç, Ali; Yılmaz, Yakup

    2014-01-01

    Objective: Many patients consult emergency services with urological complaints. The aim of this study was to investigate the epidemiology, clinical presentation and treatments of urological emergency cases in a training and research hospital. Material and methods: We retrospectively evaluated urological emergency patients referred to the emergency unit between July 2012 and July 2013 according to age, gender, affected organ, radiological imaging techniques and treatment. Results: Among 141.844 emergency cases, 3.113 (2.19%) were urological emergencies and 53.2% of the patients were male (mean age: 49.1), and 46.8% of them were female (median age: 42.8). The most frequent illness was genitourinary infection constituting 41.2% of the cases followed by renal colic (36.9%). Among the urological emergencies 483 (15.5%) patients were hospitalized and 152 surgical operations were performed. The mostly performed procedure was the placement of a suprapubic catheter in 34 patients constituting (22.3%) of the cases. Totally eight patients were referred to another experienced health center due to different reasons. Conclusion: Most of the urological emergency patients do not require emergency surgical interventions however, timely identification and management of urological emergencies with in-depth clinical evaluation are important to prevent late complications. Therefore the doctors working in emergency services must be heedful of urological emergencies. PMID:26328181

  7. Project Emerge, Dayton, Ohio. 1973-74 Final Evaluation Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crawford, James

    Project Emerge was initiated in reaction to a high dropout rate at Roosevelt High School, which was attributed to low self-concept, low motivation, underachievement and the internalization of failure, irregular attendance, health problems, and disruptive classroom behavior. The enrollment of Roosevelt High School is 1395 students, of whom…

  8. Small bowel wall thickening: MDCT evaluation in the emergency room.

    PubMed

    Akcalar, Seray; Turkbey, Baris; Karcaaltincaba, Musturay; Akpinar, Erhan; Akhan, Okan

    2011-10-01

    Small bowel wall thickening detected on computed tomography is a frequent finding in patients referring to emergency room with acute abdominal pain. In this pictorial review, we aim to discuss patterns of small bowel wall thickening and to explain hints for differential diagnosis with imaging findings. PMID:21681404

  9. Training Teachers to Evaluate Emerging Bilingual Students' Biliterate Writing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Butvilofsky, Sandra Adriana; Sparrow, Wendy Lynn

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this mixed-methods study was to explore and identify issues related to training teachers to use a bilingual writing rubric designed to examine the biliterate writing of emerging bilingual students who are participating in a biliteracy model. Findings indicate the need to provide clarifications on the rubric rating criteria and the…

  10. Evaluating the Emergence of Reverse Intraverbals in Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Allan, Alicia C.; Vladescu, Jason C.; Kisamore, April N.; Reeve, Sharon A.; Sidener, Tina M.

    2015-01-01

    Verbal behavior plays a fundamental role in the development of complex social and communication skills. Many children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder exhibit profound deficiencies in intraverbal repertoires and the development of social relationships. Recent studies that investigated the effects of intraverbal training on the emergence of…

  11. An evaluation of coordination relationships during earthquake emergency rescue using entropy theory.

    PubMed

    Rong, Huang; Xuedong, Liang; Guizhi, Zeng; Yulin, Ye; Da, Wang

    2015-05-01

    Emergency rescue after an earthquake is complex work which requires the participation of relief and social organizations. Studying earthquake emergency coordination efficiency can not only help rescue organizations to define their own rescue missions, but also strengthens inter-organizational communication and collaboration tasks, improves the efficiency of emergency rescue, and reduces loss. In this paper, collaborative entropy is introduced to study earthquake emergency rescue operations. To study the emergency rescue coordination relationship, collaborative matrices and collaborative entropy functions are established between emergency relief work and relief organizations, and the collaborative efficiency of the emergency rescue elements is determined based on this entropy function. Finally, the Lushan earthquake is used as an example to evaluate earthquake emergency rescue coordination efficiency. PMID:26083170

  12. A Preliminary Evaluation of the Emergence of Novel Mand Forms

    PubMed Central

    Hernandez, Emma; Hanley, Gregory P; Ingvarsson, Einar T; Tiger, Jeffrey H

    2007-01-01

    Strategies that produce generalized responding are valuable, especially with regard to language acquisition, because relatively little training may result in large behavior changes. Conditions that result in generalized manding were analyzed in the current study. We demonstrated in reversal designs that undesirable or single-word responses were the predominant mand forms of 3 preschool children. Multiple baseline designs with 2 participants and a reversal design with 1 participant were then used to demonstrate the extent to which differential reinforcement of single-word mands (e.g., “cars”) or framed mands (e.g., “I want the cars, please”) would result in the emergence of other single-word and framed mands for different items (e.g., mands for music, puppets, or puzzles). Results showed that prompting and differential reinforcement of one or two mand frames resulted in the emergence of other framed mands for all participants. PMID:17471798

  13. Evaluation of the shock index in dogs presenting as emergencies

    PubMed Central

    Porter, Adam E.; Rozanski, Elizabeth A.; Sharp, Claire R.; Dixon, Kursten L.; Lyn Price, Lori; Shaw, Scott P.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives To 1) determine the normal range for Shock Index (SI) [defined as heart rate (HR)/systolic blood pressure (SBP)], in healthy dogs, and 2) compare SI in healthy dogs with dogs presenting to the emergency room (ER) deemed to be in or not in a state of shock. Design Prospective study. Animals 68 clinically normal dogs,,18 dogs that were presented to the ER deemed to be in shock and 19 dogs presenting to the ER not deemed to be in shock. Setting University teaching hospital. Interventions Peripheral or central venous blood sampling. Measurements and Main Results Heart rate and SBP were recorded on simulated presentation (healthy dogs), and emergency presentations for both dogs deemed to be in shock and dogs not deemed in shock. Dogs in shock had a median SI of 1.37 (0.87–3.13), which was significantly higher than both other groups; dogs not deemed in shock had median SI 0.73 (0.56–1.20), P<0.0001 and healthy dogs had median SI 0.78 (0.37–1.30) P<0.0001), respectively. Receiver operator characteristic curve analysis suggested a SI cut-off of 1.0, yielding an area under the receiver operator characteristic (AUROC) of 0.89 (Specificity (Sp) 89, Sensitivity (Sn) 90) when comparing dogs deemed in shock with healthy dogs, and 0.92 (Sp 95, Sn 89) when comparing dogs in shock with to dogs not deemed in shock. Conclusions The SI is an easy and non-invasive patient parameter that is higher in dogs that are deemed to be in shock than both healthy dogs and dogs presented as emergencies but not deemed to be in a state of shock. The measurement of SI may have some benefit in clinical assessment of emergency patients. PMID:23855723

  14. Emergent Evaluation and Educational Reforms in Latin America

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martinic, Sergio

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this chapter is to characterize educational reforms in Latin America over the last 25 years, and the way they reflect the role, method, and use of evaluation processes. The main theoretical and methodological tensions that are created by the development of evaluations will be reviewed, concluding with the identification of some of the…

  15. Secondary Analysis of the Emergency School Assistance Program. Executive Summary, Planning/Evaluation Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Office of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC. Office of Planning, Budgeting, and Evaluation.

    A 1973 evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP) showed that it was effective in improving the academic achievement of tenth grade black male students. This study further analyzes this important result with the aim of finding useful information for the operation of the Emergency School Aid Act (ESAA) which replaced ESAP. Several…

  16. Assessment and Evaluation of National Human Resource Development System Competitiveness in Emerging Countries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oh, HunSeok; Seo, DongIn; Kim, JuSeuk; Yoo, SangOk; Seong, HeeChang

    2015-01-01

    This study assessed and evaluated the competitiveness of national human resource development (NHRD) systems in emerging countries with potential for growth. The literature on emerging countries and NHRD systems was reviewed. The study developed a model mechanism with forty-one indices and nine sub-components for the NHRD system assessment in…

  17. Transient Global Amnesia: Emergency Department Evaluation And Management.

    PubMed

    Faust, Jeremy Samuel; Nemes, Andreea

    2016-08-01

    Transient global amnesia is a clinically distinct syndrome characterized by the acute inability to form new memories. It can last up to 24 hours. The diagnosis is dependent on eliminating other more serious etiologies including toxic ingestions, acute strokes, complex partial seizures, and central nervous system infections. Transient global amnesia confers no known long-term risks; however, when abnormal signs or symptoms are present, they take precedence and guide the formulation of a differential diagnosis and investigation. In witnessed transient global amnesia with classic features, a minimalist approach is reasonable, avoiding overtesting, inappropriate medication, and medical interventions in favor of observation, ensuring patient safety, and reassuring patients and their families. This review provides a detailed framework for distinguishing transient global amnesia from its dangerous mimics and managing its course in the emergency department. PMID:27416582

  18. 1994 UPDATE OF U.S. EPA'S SUPERFUND INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY EVALUATION (SITE) EMERGING TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE), Emerging Technology Partnership (ETP) has initiated actions since 1987 that support the Clinton Administration's policy to foster and accelerate the research and development of inn...

  19. Special Emergency Education for the Disadvantaged. Final Evaluation Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greene; Mark M.; And Others

    This evaluation of Project Special Elementary Education for the Disadvantaged (SEED) sought to assess the impact of SEED instruction upon students enrolled in disadvantaged schools (grades three to six) in four major study areas: mathematics achievement, interest in math and other school subjects, motivation, and self concept. In addition, the…

  20. Evaluation of an emergency response model for the Rocky Flats Plant: Charter

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-01-01

    This Charter provides a basis for a cooperative, interagency effort to evaluate the Terrain-Responsive Atmospheric Code for emergency response and emergency planning for the Rocky Flats Plant. This document establishes the foundation for the project entitled, Evaluation of an Emergency Response Model for the Rocky Flats Plant'' (to be referred to as the Project). This document meets the following objectives: Identify the Project; establish the project management structure, organizational responsibilities, and organizational commitments for reaching the goals of the Project, and identify a process for model revision and revelation for acceptance. 2 figs.

  1. The Evaluation of Time Performance in the Emergency Response Center to Provide Pre-Hospital Emergency Services in Kermanshah

    PubMed Central

    Mohammadi, Mohsen; Nasiripour Amir, Ashkan; Fakhri, Mahmood; Bakhtiari, Ahad; Azari, Samad; Akbarzadeh, Arash; Goli, Ali; Mahboubi, Mohammad

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluated the time performance in the emergency response center to provide pre-hospital emergency services in Kermanshah. This study was a descriptive retrospective cross-sectional study. In this study 500 cases of patients from Shahrivar (September) 2012 to the end of Shahrivar (September) 2013 were selected and studied by the non-probability quota method. The measuring tool included a preset cases record sheet and sampling method was completing the cases record sheet by referring to the patients’ cases. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 18 and the concepts of descriptive and inferential statistics (Kruskal-Wallis test, benchmark Eta (Eta), Games-Howell post hoc test). The results showed that the interval mean between receiving the mission to reaching the scene, between reaching the scene to moving from the scene, and between moving from the scene to a health center was 7.28, 16.73 and 7.28 minutes. The overall mean of time performance from the scene to the health center was 11.34 minutes. Any intervention in order to speed up service delivery, reduce response times, ambulance equipment and facilities required for accuracy, validity and reliability of the data recorded in the emergency dispatch department, Continuing Education of ambulance staffs, the use of manpower with higher specialize levels such as nurses, supply the job satisfaction, and increase the coordination with other departments that are somehow involved in this process can provide the ground for reducing the loss and disability resulting from traffic accidents. PMID:25560357

  2. The evaluation of time performance in the emergency response center to provide pre-hospital emergency services in Kermanshah.

    PubMed

    Mohammadi, Mohsen; Nasiripour, Amir Ashkan; Fakhri, Mahmood; Bakhtiari, Ahad; Azari, Samad; Akbarzadeh, Arash; Goli, Ali; Mahboubi, Mohammad

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluated the time performance in the emergency response center to provide pre-hospital emergency services in Kermanshah. This study was a descriptive retrospective cross-sectional study. In this study 500 cases of patients from Shahrivar (September) 2012 to the end of Shahrivar (September) 2013 were selected and studied by the non-probability quota method. The measuring tool included a preset cases record sheet and sampling method was completing the cases record sheet by referring to the patients' cases. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 18 and the concepts of descriptive and inferential statistics (Kruskal-Wallis test, benchmark Eta (Eta), Games-Howell post hoc test). The results showed that the interval mean between receiving the mission to reaching the scene, between reaching the scene to moving from the scene, and between moving from the scene to a health center was 7.28, 16.73 and 7.28 minutes. The overall mean of time performance from the scene to the health center was 11.34 minutes. Any intervention in order to speed up service delivery, reduce response times, ambulance equipment and facilities required for accuracy, validity and reliability of the data recorded in the emergency dispatch department, Continuing Education of ambulance staffs, the use of manpower with higher specialize levels such as nurses, supply the job satisfaction, and increase the coordination with other departments that are somehow involved in this process can provide the ground for reducing the loss and disability resulting from traffic accidents. PMID:25560357

  3. Outside Educational Evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program. Interim Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    RMC Research Corp., Arlington, VA.

    This progress report describes study objectives, research design, field survey activities, and analysis plans for the evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP), a federal program to aid local educational agencies in bringing about racial desegregation of their public school systems. A need for evaluation is explained in terms of…

  4. The Emergence of Contesting Motives for Student Feedback-Based Evaluation in Australian Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Darwin, Stephen

    2016-01-01

    Student feedback-based evaluation performs a significant social role in framing perceptions of the quality of teaching in contemporary Australian higher education. Yet its emergence is a relatively recent phenomenon, having only been in widespread application since the mid-1980s. The early manifestations of student feedback-based evaluation came…

  5. Protected clinical teaching time and a bedside clinical evaluation instrument in an emergency medicine training program.

    PubMed

    Shayne, Philip; Heilpern, Katherine; Ander, Douglas; Palmer-Smith, Victoria

    2002-11-01

    In a process that has evolved over the last four years, the Emory University Emergency Medicine Education Committee has developed an "academic attending" teaching shift incorporating a formatted lecture series with a clinical evaluation exercise (CEE). The program structures the approach to clinical teaching at the bedside, provides an objective clinical evaluation tool specific to emergency medicine residents, and provides targeted learning for medical students and residents rotating in the emergency department (ED). The CEE instrument was designed to be quick and efficient, satisfy requirements of assessment of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) general competencies, and incorporate the language of the "Model of the Clinical Practice of Emergency Medicine." The original program called for unstructured bedside teaching three days a week, by faculty freed from clinical duties, combined with a limited series of introductory emergency medicine lectures. The program proved more successful when concentrated in a once weekly structured educational program. The prepared, repeating lecture series has been expanded to include many of the most common ED presenting chief complaints and has significantly advanced a curriculum for medical students and visiting interns. A CEE was developed to evaluate and provide immediate feedback to residents on many of the core ACGME competencies. The CEE has been successfully used to structure the bedside educational encounter. This dedicated non-clinical "teaching" shift appears effective in meeting the educational goals of the authors' academic ED. This is a description of the program and its evolution; the program has not been formally evaluated. PMID:12414493

  6. Generating realistic images using Kray

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanski, Grzegorz

    2004-07-01

    Kray is an application for creating realistic images. It is written in C++ programming language, has a text-based interface, solves global illumination problem using techniques such as radiosity, path tracing and photon mapping.

  7. RAMESES publication standards: realist syntheses

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background There is growing interest in realist synthesis as an alternative systematic review method. This approach offers the potential to expand the knowledge base in policy-relevant areas - for example, by explaining the success, failure or mixed fortunes of complex interventions. No previous publication standards exist for reporting realist syntheses. This standard was developed as part of the RAMESES (Realist And MEta-narrative Evidence Syntheses: Evolving Standards) project. The project's aim is to produce preliminary publication standards for realist systematic reviews. Methods We (a) collated and summarized existing literature on the principles of good practice in realist syntheses; (b) considered the extent to which these principles had been followed by published syntheses, thereby identifying how rigor may be lost and how existing methods could be improved; (c) used a three-round online Delphi method with an interdisciplinary panel of national and international experts in evidence synthesis, realist research, policy and/or publishing to produce and iteratively refine a draft set of methodological steps and publication standards; (d) provided real-time support to ongoing realist syntheses and the open-access RAMESES online discussion list so as to capture problems and questions as they arose; and (e) synthesized expert input, evidence syntheses and real-time problem analysis into a definitive set of standards. Results We identified 35 published realist syntheses, provided real-time support to 9 on-going syntheses and captured questions raised in the RAMESES discussion list. Through analysis and discussion within the project team, we summarized the published literature and common questions and challenges into briefing materials for the Delphi panel, comprising 37 members. Within three rounds this panel had reached consensus on 19 key publication standards, with an overall response rate of 91%. Conclusion This project used multiple sources to develop and

  8. Measuring quality of care in psychiatric emergencies: construction and evaluation of a Bayesian index.

    PubMed Central

    Gustafson, D H; Sainfort, F; Johnson, S W; Sateia, M

    1993-01-01

    OBJECTIVE. This study was conducted to determine whether an index for measuring quality of care for psychiatric emergencies is reliable and valid. DATA SOURCES/STUDY SETTING. The study used primary data collected over a 12-month period from two urban hospitals in the Northeast. One had 700 inpatient beds, an inpatient psychiatric unit, and community mental health personnel located in the emergency department. The other had 300 beds but none of the other hospital's features. STUDY DESIGN. The index was developed by a panel of experts in emergency psychiatry using a subjective Bayesian statistical methodology and was evaluated in terms of its ability to: (1) predict a second panel's judgments of quality; (2) predict a specific quality-related patient outcome, i.e., compliance with follow-up recommendations; (3) provide a reliable measurement procedure; and (4) detect variations in patterns of emergency department practices. DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS. Data were collected on 2,231 randomly selected emergency psychiatric patients (psychiatric diagnosis, alcohol abuse, nonverbal patients experiencing a psychiatric emergency, and patients with somatic complaints such as life crisis) treated in the emergency departments of the two hospitals. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS. The index predicted physician judgments of quality, was reliable, exhibited sufficient variation in scores, and was strongly associated with patient compliance. CONCLUSIONS. The study demonstrated that a subjective Bayesian model can be used to develop a reliable and valid index for measuring quality of care, with potential for practical application in management of health services. PMID:8514497

  9. 77 FR 50546 - Agency Information Collection: Emergency Submission for OMB Review (CEPACT (Center for Evaluation...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-21

    ... of PACT) Demographic Questionnaire and Patient Focus Group); Comment Request AGENCY: Veterans Health... U.S.C. 3507(j)(1)). An emergency clearance is being requested for information needed to focus on... Evaluation of PACT) Demographic Questionnaire, VA Form 10-0534 and Patient Focus Group. OMB Control...

  10. Evaluation of Access, a Primary Care Program for Indigent Patients: Inpatient and Emergency Room Utilization.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davidson, Richard A.; Giancola, Angela; Gast, Andrea; Ho, Janice; Waddell, Rhondda

    2003-01-01

    Evaluated the impact of Accessing Community Care through Eastside Social Services (ACCESS), a program that provided indigent patients with free primary care, on inpatient admissions, emergency room (ER) visits, and subsequent charges. Data on 19 people before and after program enrollment showed significant decreases in ER visits following…

  11. Evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program. Volume I: Summary. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    RMC Research Corp., Arlington, VA.

    The Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP) was developed as a Federal program to aid local education agencies (LEAs) in achieving and adjusting to recent racial desegregation of their public school systems. This is one of three volumes that constitute the final report of the evaluation of the ESAP. In Volume I, a summary of the overall study…

  12. Design for the Evaluation of the San Francisco Home Health Services. Emergency Family Care Services Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Remy, Linda L.

    This is a design for the evaluation of emergency family care programs of the San Francisco, California Home Health Services administration. The design objectives are qiven as the promotion of the health and welfare of the family unit and the reduction of the number of out-of-home placements of children and subsequent crises. The objectives of the…

  13. Mentoring Australian Emerging Researchers in Aging: Evaluation of a Pilot Mentoring Scheme

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henwood, Tim; Bartlett, Helen; Carroll, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    A survey of Australian emerging researchers in aging identified the need for greater professional development and networking opportunities. To address this, a formal mentorship scheme was developed and evaluated. Fourteen postgraduate researchers (proteges) were matched by discipline and research interest to experienced academics (mentors).…

  14. Asbestos in Schools: Evaluation of the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA): A Fact Sheet.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. Office of Toxic Substances.

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently completed an evaluation of the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) regulatory program in schools. The purpose of the fact sheet is to inform schools of their initial AHERA successes, note areas for improvement, and provide additional guidance. Major findings pertaining to school building…

  15. EVALUATING AND TESTING EMERGENCY TESTING MONITORING DEVICES IN EXTREME COLD TEMPERATURES

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA Identifier: F8P11070
    Title: Evaluating and Testing Emergency Testing Monitoring Devices in Extreme Cold Temperatures
    Fellow (Principal Investigator): Tyler S. O’Dell
    Institution: Lake Superior State University
    EPA GRANT Represent...

  16. The emergency system for the town of Milano: evaluation of an help point.

    PubMed

    Steffan, Isabella Tiziana

    2012-01-01

    The article presents a complex work of which the author has been asked by the Municipality of Milan an its Service Company (AEM, now A2A) to apply Ergonomics to evaluate a product designed for asking information and emergency, with particular attention to vulnerable city users. PMID:22316814

  17. Preliminary evaluation of the use of a CDMA-based emergency telemedicine system.

    PubMed

    Kang, Jaemin; Chun, Honggu; Shin, Il Hyung; Shin, Sang Do; Suh, Gil Joon; Kim, Hee Chan

    2006-01-01

    We have conducted a preliminary evaluation of the use of a code division multiple access (CDMA)-based emergency telemedicine system to be used by emergency rescuers providing first-aid treatment for patients. The prototype system included five instrumentation modules for measuring non-invasive arterial blood pressure (NIBP), arterial oxygen saturation (SpO(2)), six-channel electrocardiogram (ECG), blood glucose concentration and body temperature. The patient data were transferred to a doctor's PC through CDMA and TCP/IP networks using an embedded personal digital assistant (PDA) phone. Performance tests in the laboratory showed that the system provided reliable values with error ranges within +/-1% for heart rate, +/-5 mmHg for NIBP, +/-2% for SpO(2) and +/-1% for glucose. The feasibility of the prototype system was then evaluated with 15 real emergency patients on Jeju Island over a two-month period. Measured data were transmitted from a moving ambulance to the emergency medical centre without significant CDMA connection loss or transmission errors. The average transfer time was 8 min. Four emergency doctors and 11 rescuers completed a questionnaire. There were favourable reviews from the users. PMID:17227609

  18. Trauma in elderly patients evaluated in a hospital emergency department in Konya, Turkey: a retrospective study

    PubMed Central

    Kara, Hasan; Bayir, Aysegul; Ak, Ahmet; Akinci, Murat; Tufekci, Necmettin; Degirmenci, Selim; Azap, Melih

    2014-01-01

    Purpose Trauma is a common cause of admission to the hospital emergency department. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the cause of admission, clinical characteristics, and outcomes of patients aged ≥65 years admitted to an emergency department in Turkey because of blunt trauma. Materials and methods Medical records were retrospectively reviewed for 568 patients (314 women and 254 men) aged ≥65 years who were admitted to an emergency department of a tertiary care hospital. Results Trauma was caused by low-energy fall in 379 patients (67%), traffic accident in 79 patients (14%), high-energy fall in 69 patients (12%), and other causes in 41 patients (7%). The most frequent sites of injury were the lower extremity, thorax, upper extremity, and head. The femur was the most frequent fracture site. After evaluation in the emergency department, 377 patients (66%) were hospitalized. There were 31 patients (5%) who died. Risk of hospitalization after trauma was significantly associated with trauma to the lower extremity, thorax, and spine; fractures of the femur and rib; and intracranial injury. Conclusion Emergency department admission after trauma in patients aged ≥65 years is common after low-energy falls, and most injuries occur to the extremities. It is important to focus on prevention of falls to decrease the frequency of trauma in the elderly. PMID:24376346

  19. Realistic Radio Communications in Pilot Simulator Training

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burki-Cohen, Judith; Kendra, Andrew J.; Kanki, Barbara G.; Lee, Alfred T.

    2000-01-01

    Simulators used for total training and evaluation of airline pilots must satisfy stringent criteria in order to assure their adequacy for training and checking maneuvers. Air traffic control and company radio communications simulation, however, may still be left to role-play by the already taxed instructor/evaluators in spite of their central importance in every aspect of the flight environment. The underlying premise of this research is that providing a realistic radio communications environment would increase safety by enhancing pilot training and evaluation. This report summarizes the first-year efforts of assessing the requirement and feasibility of simulating radio communications automatically. A review of the training and crew resource/task management literature showed both practical and theoretical support for the need for realistic radio communications simulation. A survey of 29 instructor/evaluators from 14 airlines revealed that radio communications are mainly role-played by the instructor/evaluators. This increases instructor/evaluators' own workload while unrealistically lowering pilot communications load compared to actual operations, with a concomitant loss in training/evaluation effectiveness. A technology review searching for an automated means of providing radio communications to and from aircraft with minimal human effort showed that while promising, the technology is still immature. Further research and the need for establishing a proof-of-concept are also discussed.

  20. Mechanisms that Trigger a Good Health-Care Response to Intimate Partner Violence in Spain. Combining Realist Evaluation and Qualitative Comparative Analysis Approaches

    PubMed Central

    Goicolea, Isabel; Vives-Cases, Carmen; Hurtig, Anna-Karin; Marchal, Bruno; Briones-Vozmediano, Erica; Otero-García, Laura; García-Quinto, Marta; San Sebastian, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Background Health care professionals, especially those working in primary health-care services, can play a key role in preventing and responding to intimate partner violence. However, there are huge variations in the way health care professionals and primary health care teams respond to intimate partner violence. In this study we tested a previously developed programme theory on 15 primary health care center teams located in four different Spanish regions: Murcia, C Valenciana, Castilla-León and Cantabria. The aim was to identify the key combinations of contextual factors and mechanisms that trigger a good primary health care center team response to intimate partner violence. Methods A multiple case-study design was used. Qualitative and quantitative information was collected from each of the 15 centers (cases). In order to handle the large amount of information without losing familiarity with each case, qualitative comparative analysis was undertaken. Conditions (context and mechanisms) and outcomes, were identified and assessed for each of the 15 cases, and solution formulae were calculated using qualitative comparative analysis software. Results The emerging programme theory highlighted the importance of the combination of each team’s self-efficacy, perceived preparation and women-centredness in generating a good team response to intimate partner violence. The use of the protocol and accumulated experience in primary health care were the most relevant contextual/intervention conditions to trigger a good response. However in order to achieve this, they must be combined with other conditions, such as an enabling team climate, having a champion social worker and having staff with training in intimate partner violence. Conclusions Interventions to improve primary health care teams’ response to intimate partner violence should focus on strengthening team’s self-efficacy, perceived preparation and the implementation of a woman-centred approach. The use of the

  1. Evaluation of local electric fields generated by transcranial direct current stimulation with an extracephalic reference electrode based on realistic 3D body modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Im, Chang-Hwan; Park, Ji-Hye; Shim, Miseon; Chang, Won Hyuk; Kim, Yun-Hee

    2012-04-01

    In this study, local electric field distributions generated by transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) with an extracephalic reference electrode were evaluated to address extracephalic tDCS safety issues. To this aim, we generated a numerical model of an adult male human upper body and applied the 3D finite element method to electric current conduction analysis. In our simulations, the active electrode was placed over the left primary motor cortex (M1) and the reference electrode was placed at six different locations: over the right temporal lobe, on the right supraorbital region, on the right deltoid, on the left deltoid, under the chin, and on the right buccinator muscle. The maximum current density and electric field intensity values in the brainstem generated by the extracephalic reference electrodes were comparable to, or even less than, those generated by the cephalic reference electrodes. These results suggest that extracephalic reference electrodes do not lead to unwanted modulation of the brainstem cardio-respiratory and autonomic centers, as indicated by recent experimental studies. The volume energy density was concentrated at the neck area by the use of deltoid reference electrodes, but was still smaller than that around the active electrode locations. In addition, the distributions of elicited cortical electric fields demonstrated that the use of extracephalic reference electrodes might allow for the robust prediction of cortical modulations with little dependence on the reference electrode locations.

  2. Evaluation of Emerging Fusarium mycotoxins beauvericin, Enniatins, Fusaproliferin and Moniliformin in Domestic Rice in Iran

    PubMed Central

    Nazari, Firouzeh; Sulyok, Michael; Kobarfard, Farzad; Yazdanpanah, Hassan; Krska, Rudolf

    2015-01-01

    The occurrence of emerging Fusarium mycotoxins beauvericin (BEA), enniatins (ENNs) (A, A1, B, B1), Fusaproliferin and moniliformin was evaluated by a liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometric (LC/ESI-MS/MS) technique in 65 domestic rice samples produced in Gilan and Mazandaran Provinces in Iran. The results showed that 46% of the samples were contaminated with at least one of the emerging mycotoxins. BEA was the most prevalent mycotoxin, which was found in 26 out of 65 rice samples at the concentrations up to 0.47 µg/Kg. Enniatin A1 which was the only member of ENNs was detected in the samples, occurred in 7.7% of samples with an average level of 0.06 μg/Kg. No detectable level of Fusaproliferin and moniliformin was found. This is the first report concerning the contamination of Iranian domestic rice samples with the emerging Fusarium mycotoxins. PMID:25901158

  3. Development and use of consolidated criteria for evaluation of emergency preparedness plans for DOE facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Lerner, K.; Kier, P.H.; Baldwin, T.E.

    1995-07-01

    Emergency preparedness at US Department of Energy (DOE) facilities is promoted by development and quality control of response plans. To promote quality control efforts, DOE has developed a review document that consolidates requirements and guidance pertaining to emergency response planning from various DOE and regulatory sources. The Criteria for Evaluation of Operational Emergency Plans (herein referred to as the Criteria document) has been constructed and arranged to maximize ease of use in reviewing DOE response plans. Although developed as a review instrument, the document also serves as a de facto guide for plan development, and could potentially be useful outside the scope of its original intended DOE clientele. As regulatory and DOE requirements are revised and added in the future, the document will be updated to stay current.

  4. Performance Evaluation of Mobile Ad Hoc Network Based Communications for Future Mobile Tele-Emergency System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viswacheda, D. V.; Barukang, L.; Hamid, M. Y.; Arifianto, M. S.

    Sparked by awareness of the limitations to provide medical services in remote areas, researchers have perceived that developing telemedicine systems is inevitable. In most cases very remote areas and disaster struck areas lack telecommunication infrastructure. Telemedicine system operating in such areas must have advanced wireless technology supporting it in devastating situation, hence it is called as tele-emergency system. Our approach is on MANET combined with Mobile IP and MIPV6, is the basis of infrastructure for the mobile tele-emergency system. The tele-emergency system requires data, voice and video transmission in its network. In this investigation, evaluation is based on simulation of the various ITU-T standard CODECs of VoIP and video transmission over MANET using discrete event simulator NS-2. The results of simulation showed that ITU-T G723.1 worked well in the MANET environment than the other CODECs for VoIP in fixed and mobility tele-emergency environments. From the simulation of video CODEC performance evaluation, it was observed that H.263 performed to a great extent in random small scale environment and also in multiple video flow of 57.6kbps speed video transmission.

  5. The Evaluation Exchange: Emerging Strategies in Evaluating Child and Family Services, 2002.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lopez, M. Elena, Ed.

    2002-01-01

    This document is comprised of the three 2002 issues of a newsletter of the Harvard Family Research Project, designed to share new ideas and experiences in evaluating systems reform and comprehensive child and family services. The Spring issue focuses on family support evaluations and their role in advancing the field of family support and includes…

  6. The Evaluation Exchange: Emerging Strategies in Evaluating Child and Family Services, 2001.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodyear, Leslie, Ed.; Bohan-Baker, Marielle, Ed.

    2001-01-01

    This document is comprised of the two 2001 issues of a newsletter of the Harvard Family Research Project, designed to share new ideas and experiences in evaluating systems reform and comprehensive child and family services. The first issue focuses on strategic communications and efforts of nonprofit agencies to evaluate strategic communication…

  7. Evaluation of the Xpert Flu Rapid PCR Assay in High-Risk Emergency Department Patients

    PubMed Central

    Valsamakis, Alexandra; Gaydos, Charlotte A.; Forman, Michael; Hardick, Justin; Kidambi, Pranav; Amin, Sharmeen; Gupta, Alisha; Rothman, Richard E.

    2014-01-01

    We prospectively evaluated the performance of Cepheid's GeneXpert Xpert Flu assay in a target population of 281 adults presenting to the emergency department with an acute respiratory illness who met Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria for recommended antiviral treatment. Compared with the Prodesse ProFlu+ assay, Xpert Flu had an overall sensitivity of 95.3% and specificity of 99.2%. PMID:25253792

  8. The Potential and Challenges of Critical Realist Ethnography

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barron, Ian

    2013-01-01

    This article revisits the critical realist ethnographic process that was adopted in my doctoral thesis, which was concerned with the experiences of ethnic identity of white British and Pakistani British children as they started kindergarten in the northwest of England. The article focuses on the ethnography that emerged from the visits that I…

  9. Evaluator/controller practicum for US Department of Energy emergency exercises

    SciTech Connect

    Lacher, L.; Converse, R.; Gasper, W.; Mitrani, J.

    1996-12-31

    Argonne National Laboratory has designed a practicum to help ensure that exercises at Department of Energy (DOE) facilities provide results that will be useful in maintaining or improving emergency preparedness while ensuring the safety of the public and the exercise participants. Participants in the first two offerings of the practicum came from DOE facilities nationwide. The practicum augments the usual forms of controller and evaluator training with actual practice in carrying out controller and evaluator roles. Feedback from participants indicated substantial benefit from the training. Many of the participants expressed a desire to present such training to others at their home facilities.

  10. Teaching and evaluating multitasking ability in emergency medicine residents - what is the best practice?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Multitasking is an essential skill to develop during Emergency Medicine (EM) residency. Residents who struggle to cope in a multitasking environment risk fatigue, stress, and burnout. Improper management of interruption has been causally linked with medical errors. Formal teaching and evaluation of multitasking is often lacking in EM residency programs. This article reviewed the literature on multitasking in EM to identify best practices for teaching and evaluating multitasking amongst EM residents. With the advancement in understanding of what multitasking is, deliberate attempts should be made to teach residents pitfalls and coping strategies. This can be taught through a formal curriculum, role modeling by faculty, and simulation training. The best way to evaluate multitasking ability in residents is by direct observation. The EM Milestone Project provides a framework by which multitasking can be evaluated. EM residents should be deployed in work environments commiserate with their multitasking ability and their progress should be graduated after identified deficiencies are remediated. PMID:25635201

  11. State-of-the-Art Evaluation of Emergency Department Patients Presenting With Potential Acute Coronary Syndromes.

    PubMed

    Hollander, Judd E; Than, Martin; Mueller, Christian

    2016-08-16

    It is well established that clinicians cannot use clinical judgment alone to determine whether an individual patient who presents to the emergency department has an acute coronary syndrome. The history and physical examination do not distinguish sufficiently between the many conditions that can cause acute chest pain syndromes. Cardiac risk factors do not have sufficient discriminatory ability in symptomatic patients presenting to the emergency department. Most patients with non-ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction do not present with electrocardiographic evidence of active ischemia. The improvement in cardiac troponin assays, especially in conjunction with well-validated clinical decision algorithms, now enables the clinician to rapidly exclude myocardial infarction. In patients in whom unstable angina remains a concern or there is a desire to evaluate for underlying coronary artery disease, coronary computed tomography angiography can be used in the emergency department. Once a process that took ≥24 hours, computed tomography angiography now can rapidly exclude myocardial infarction and coronary artery disease in patients in the emergency department. PMID:27528647

  12. Evaluation of Pharmacists' Services for Dispensing Emergency Contraceptive Pills in Delhi, India: A Mystery Shopper Study

    PubMed Central

    Saxena, Pikee; Mishra, Archana; Nigam, Aruna

    2016-01-01

    Background: Although emergency contraceptive pills are available over the counter, the quality of consultation, including key areas of contraceptive counseling and prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STI), has not been well documented. Objective: To evaluate actual pharmacist services while dispensing emergency contraception through a mystery shopper technique. Material and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in 81 pharmacies situated in Delhi by 4 trained mystery shoppers posed as customers over a period of 6 months. Results: None of the pharmacists asked about the time lapsed since last unprotected sexual intercourse or last menstrual period before deciding the eligibility of the customer. The majority were unclear about side effects associated with emergency contraception (78.57%) or with anticipated changes in menstrual flow (78.57%); 85.71% did not know whether subsequent unprotected intercourse would be protected. Only 15.71% counseled shoppers regarding risk of STI on asking leading questions and 88.5% did not provide any contraceptive advice. Conclusion: There is a huge gap in the technical knowledge and mindset of the pharmacists when it comes to checking for the eligibility of the client and providing advice regarding use of regular contraception and barrier for protection from STI, which needs to be addressed in order to realize the full benefit of making emergency contraceptive pills available over the counter. PMID:27385872

  13. ANALYSIS OF EMERGING NDE TECHNIQUES: METHODS FOR EVALUATING AND IMPLEMENTING CONTINUOUS ONLINE MONITORING

    SciTech Connect

    Cumblidge, Stephen E.; Doctor, Steven R.; Bond, Leonard J.; Taylor, Theodore T.; Lupold, Timothy R.; Hull, Amy; Malik, Shah

    2009-08-05

    One of the goals of the program for the proactive management of materials degradation (PMMD) is to manage proactively the in-service degradation of metallic components in aging NPPs. As some forms of degradation, such as stress corrosion cracking, are characterized by a long initiation time followed by a rapid growth phase, new inspection or monitoring technologies may be required. New nondestructive evaluation (NDE) techniques that may be needed include techniques to find stress corrosion cracking (SCC) precursors, on-line monitoring techniques to detect cracks as they initiate and grow, as well as advances in NDE technologies. This paper reports on the first part of the development of a methodology to determine the effectiveness of these emerging NDE techniques for managing metallic degradation. This methodology will draw from experience derived from evaluating techniques that have "emerged" in the past. The methodology will follow five stages: a definition of inspection parameters, a technical evaluation, laboratory testing, round robin testing, and the design of a performance demonstration program. This methodology will formalize the path taken for previous techniques and set a predictable course for future NDE techniques. This paper then applies the expert review section of the methodology to the acoustic emission technique to evaluate the use of acoustic emission in performing continuous online monitoring of reactor components.

  14. What Can Emergency Medicine Learn From Kinetics: Introducing an Alternative Evaluation and a Universal Criterion Standard for Emergency Department Performance

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Chih-Long; Chang, Chin-Fu; Chiu, Chun-Wen; Chi, Chih-Hsien; Tian, Zhong; Wen, Jyh-Horng; Wen, Jet-Chau

    2016-01-01

    Abstract This research focuses on developing an improved and robust measurement for emergency department (ED) performance and a criterion standard for global use via kinetic analysis. Based on kinetic approach, the input-throughput-output conceptual model of ED crowding is compared to the procedure of enzyme catalysis. All in average, the retented patients in EDs are defined as substrate ( ), whereas the patients who depart the EDs as product ( ). Therefore, the average ED departure velocity ( ) can be presented as   divided by a given time (t) of the ED length of stay (LOS). The   and   plots are depicted hourly for the kinetic analysis. The long-term stability of the kinetic parameters is ascertained by the method of coefficient of variation (CV). The participants collected for this study are from the EDs of Changhua Christian Medical Center and the five branched hospitals, all located in Taiwan. Based on the   plot analysis, the results clearly show 2 curves, an upper and a lower curve. The timeline of the lower curve includes approximately the total ED busy hours, and thus it can be used for the subsequent kinetic analysis. In order to explore the adequate kinetic parameters for ED performance, the try-and-error process was followed in this study. As a result, the   plots adapted from the lower curves show the best linear regression of   on   with a good coefficient of determination (R2). The Pan-Wen constant (PW), which is the slope of the liner regression line, and the ED medical personnel unit turnover number (EDMPU TON) were deduced from the kinetic meanings of   plots. In this research, the 2 kinetic parameters, PW and EDMPU TON were applied for the ED performance evaluations. An innovative relationship between the ED retented patients and the ED departure velocity is verified as PW; whereas, a feasible kinetic parameter, the EDMPU TON explicates the teamwork efficiency of the ED providers. Moreover, the EDMPU TON may not only be a reliable

  15. What Can Emergency Medicine Learn From Kinetics: Introducing an Alternative Evaluation and a Universal Criterion Standard for Emergency Department Performance.

    PubMed

    Pan, Chih-Long; Chang, Chin-Fu; Chiu, Chun-Wen; Chi, Chih-Hsien; Tian, Zhong; Wen, Jyh-Horng; Wen, Jet-Chau

    2016-03-01

    This research focuses on developing an improved and robust measurement for emergency department (ED) performance and a criterion standard for global use via kinetic analysis. Based on kinetic approach, the input-throughput-output conceptual model of ED crowding is compared to the procedure of enzyme catalysis. All in average, the retented patients in EDs are defined as substrate (S), whereas the patients who depart the EDs as product (P). Therefore, the average ED departure velocity (V) can be presented as (P)divided by a given time (t) of the ED length of stay (LOS). The S-V and S²-P plots are depicted hourly for the kinetic analysis. The long-term stability of the kinetic parameters is ascertained by the method of coefficient of variation (CV). The participants collected for this study are from the EDs of Changhua Christian Medical Center and the five branched hospitals, all located in Taiwan. Based on the S-V plot analysis, the results clearly show 2 curves, an upper and a lower curve. The timeline of the lower curve includes approximately the total ED busy hours, and thus it can be used for the subsequent kinetic analysis. In order to explore the adequate kinetic parameters for ED performance, the try-and-error process was followed in this study. As a result, the S²-V plots adapted from the lower curves show the best linear regression of S² on V with a good coefficient of determination (R). The Pan-Wen constant (PW), which is the slope of the liner regression line, and the ED medical personnel unit turnover number (EDMPU TON) were deduced from the kinetic meanings of (Equation is included in full-text article.)plots. In this research, the 2 kinetic parameters, PW and EDMPU TON were applied for the ED performance evaluations. An innovative relationship between the ED retented patients and the ED departure velocity is verified as PW; whereas, a feasible kinetic parameter, the EDMPU TON explicates the teamwork efficiency of the ED providers. Moreover, the EDMPU

  16. Emergency medical services data for cardiovascular disease surveillance, program planning, and evaluation in Maine.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Katie A; Decker, Kathy; Mervis, Cynthia A; Louder, Danielle; Bradshaw, Jay; DeVader, Shannon; Wigand, Debra

    2008-04-01

    Rapid access to medical treatment is a key determinant of outcomes for cardiovascular events. Emergency medical services (EMS) play an important role in delivering early treatment for acute cardiovascular events. Attention has increased on the potential for EMS data to contribute to our understanding of prehospital treatment. Maine recently began to explore the possible role of EMS data in cardiovascular disease surveillance and cardiovascular health program planning and evaluation. We describe the Maine EMS data system, discuss findings on ease of data use and data quality, provide a sample of findings, and share how we plan to use EMS data for program planning and evaluation of community-level interventions and to partner with EMS provider organizations to improve treatment. Our objective is to increase understanding of the promise and limitations of using EMS data for cardiovascular disease surveillance and program planning and evaluation. PMID:18341789

  17. Maternal Evaluations of Children's Emergent Literacy Level, Maternal Mediation in Book Reading, and Children's Emergent Literacy Level: A Comparison Between SES Groups

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Korat, Ofra; Haglili, Sharon

    2007-01-01

    This study examined whether maternal evaluations of children's emergent literacy (EL) levels, maternal mediation during a book-reading activity with children, and the children's EL levels differ as a function of socioeconomic status (SES; low vs. high), and whether the relationships between these variables differ as a function of SES levels. Study…

  18. Electromagnetic Scattering from Realistic Targets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Shung- Wu; Jin, Jian-Ming

    1997-01-01

    The general goal of the project is to develop computational tools for calculating radar signature of realistic targets. A hybrid technique that combines the shooting-and-bouncing-ray (SBR) method and the finite-element method (FEM) for the radiation characterization of microstrip patch antennas in a complex geometry was developed. In addition, a hybridization procedure to combine moment method (MoM) solution and the SBR method to treat the scattering of waveguide slot arrays on an aircraft was developed. A list of journal articles and conference papers is included.

  19. Evaluation of emergency drug releases from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Quarantine Stations.

    PubMed

    Roohi, Shahrokh; Grinnell, Margaret; Sandoval, Michelle; Cohen, Nicole J; Crocker, Kimberly; Allen, Christopher; Dougherty, Cindy; Jolly, Julian; Pesik, Nicki

    2015-01-01

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Quarantine Stations distribute select lifesaving drug products that are not commercially available or are in limited supply in the United States for emergency treatment of certain health conditions. Following a retrospective analysis of shipment records, the authors estimated an average of 6.66 hours saved per shipment when drug products were distributed from quarantine stations compared to a hypothetical centralized site from CDC headquarters in Atlanta, GA. This evaluation supports the continued use of a decentralized model which leverages CDC's regional presence and maximizes efficiency in the distribution of lifesaving drugs. PMID:25779896

  20. Evaluation and management of acute abdominal pain in the emergency department

    PubMed Central

    Macaluso, Christopher R; McNamara, Robert M

    2012-01-01

    Evaluation of the emergency department patient with acute abdominal pain is sometimes difficult. Various factors can obscure the presentation, delaying or preventing the correct diagnosis, with subsequent adverse patient outcomes. Clinicians must consider multiple diagnoses, especially those life-threatening conditions that require timely intervention to limit morbidity and mortality. This article will review general information on abdominal pain and discuss the clinical approach by review of the history and the physical examination. Additionally, this article will discuss the approach to unstable patients with abdominal pain. PMID:23055768

  1. Evaluation of emergency-locator-transmitter performance in real and simulated crash tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carden, H. D.

    1981-01-01

    Emergency locator transmitter (ELT) activation problems were investigated by testing a sampling of ELT units in actual airplane crashes and in a special test apparatus which simulated longitudinal crash pulses with superimposed local structural resonances. Probable causes of excessive false alarms and nonactivations of ELT's during crash situations were determined and solutions to the current operational and technical problems were obtained. The results, which considered placement, mounting, and activation of ELT's under simulated crash impacts, and an evaluation of the sensitivity of ELT impact switches to orientation and to local structural vibrations are discussed.

  2. How Does Emergency Department Crowding Affect Medical Student Test Scores and Clerkship Evaluations?

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Grant; Arya, Rajiv; Ritz, Z. Trevor; He, Albert S.; Ohman-Strickland, Pamela A.; McCoy, Jonathan V.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The effect of emergency department (ED) crowding has been recognized as a concern for more than 20 years; its effect on productivity, medical errors, and patient satisfaction has been studied extensively. Little research has reviewed the effect of ED crowding on medical education. Prior studies that have considered this effect have shown no correlation between ED crowding and resident perception of quality of medical education. Objective To determine whether ED crowding, as measured by the National ED Overcrowding Scale (NEDOCS) score, has a quantifiable effect on medical student objective and subjective experiences during emergency medicine (EM) clerkship rotations. Methods We collected end-of-rotation examinations and medical student evaluations for 21 EM rotation blocks between July 2010 and May 2012, with a total of 211 students. NEDOCS scores were calculated for each corresponding period. Weighted regression analyses examined the correlation between components of the medical student evaluation, student test scores, and the NEDOCS score for each period. Results When all 21 rotations are included in the analysis, NEDOCS scores showed a negative correlation with medical student tests scores (regression coefficient= −0.16, p=0.04) and three elements of the rotation evaluation (attending teaching, communication, and systems-based practice; p<0.05). We excluded an outlying NEDOCS score from the analysis and obtained similar results. When the data were controlled for effect of month of the year, only student test score remained significantly correlated with NEDOCS score (p=0.011). No part of the medical student rotation evaluation attained significant correlation with the NEDOCS score (p≥0.34 in all cases). Conclusion ED overcrowding does demonstrate a small but negative association with medical student performance on end-of-rotation examinations. Additional studies are recommended to further evaluate this effect. PMID:26594289

  3. Electrokinetic transport in realistic nanochannels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Moran; Liu, Jin; Kang, Qinjun

    2009-11-01

    When an electrolyte solution contacts with a solid surface, the surface will likely be charged through an electrochemical adsorption process. The surface charge in general varies with the local bulk ionic concentration, the pH value and the temperature of the solution, and even with the double layer interactions in the narrow channel. Most of the previous studies are based on a constant zeta potential or surface charge density assumption, which does not reflect the realistic charge status at interfaces and may lead to inaccurate predictions. In this work, we first develop a generalized model for electrochemical boundary conditions on solid-liquid interfaces, which can closely approximate the known experimental properties. We further present nonequilibrium molecular dynamic (NEMD) simulations of electrokinetic transport in nanochannels. We take silica and carbon as examples of channel materials. Both monovalent and multivalent ionic solutions are considered. The electrokinetic transport properties for realistic nanochannels are therefore studied and a multiscale analysis for a new energy conversion device is performed.

  4. Logic Modeling as a Tool to Prepare to Evaluate Disaster and Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery in Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zantal-Wiener, Kathy; Horwood, Thomas J.

    2010-01-01

    The authors propose a comprehensive evaluation framework to prepare for evaluating school emergency management programs. This framework involves a logic model that incorporates Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) measures as a foundation for comprehensive evaluation that complements performance monitoring used by the U.S. Department of…

  5. A process for evaluation and state approval of an emergency response atmospheric dispersion model for Rocky Flats, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Hodgin, C.R.

    1991-11-06

    This document contains copies of the vugraphs used by C. R. Hodgin for the November 6, 1991 presentation summarizing the process to be used for evaluation of the Emergency Response Dispersion Model. (MHB)

  6. Developing and implementing an intervention. Evaluation of an emergency department pilot on partner abuse.

    PubMed

    Spinola, C; Stewart, L; Fanslow, J; Norton, R

    1998-03-01

    This article discusses the role of formative and process evaluation in the development and implementation of a pilot intervention to improve the identification, treatment, and referral of women abused by their partners who present to an emergency department (ED). These evaluations were undertaken in conjunction with an outcome evaluation of training in and use of a five-step protocol of care piloted in a New Zealand public hospital. The outcome evaluation showed there was an improvement in identification and acute care of abused women following the intervention. The article highlights key factors that were relevant to the intervention's development and implementation, including social context, development processes, appropriateness for the setting, and level of support from key stakeholders. Factors identified as key to intervention effectiveness included its appropriateness for abused women and responsiveness to specific hospital, department, and staff needs. The key role of formative and process evaluation in the development and implementation of pilot interventions is highlighted, and the particular lessons gained from this study have relevance and application to other interventions. PMID:10183341

  7. Evaluation of a Sickle Cell Disease Educational Website for Emergency Providers.

    PubMed

    Kayle, Mariam; Brennan-Cook, Jill; Carter, Brigit M; Derouin, Anne L; Silva, Susan G; Tanabe, Paula

    2016-01-01

    Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a complex multisystem debilitating disease. Despite its complexity, health care providers who are not SCD experts receive little formal education on SCD. An open-access, educational website, "Emergency Department Sickle Cell Disease: Crisis Management and Beyond," was created to provide education about SCD to emergency department (ED) providers who are not SCD experts but who provide care for patients with SCD. Electronic surveys were used to conduct a formal evaluation of the accuracy and relevance of the website's content, as well as the effectiveness of the education modules in improving knowledge among health care providers. The evaluation consisted of (1) individual module pre- and post-knowledge assessment, (2) content validity assessment of educational modules, (3) overall website content assessment, and (4) overall website assessment (Health on the Net core principles). A convenient sample of ED providers, accelerated bachelor of science in nursing students, SCD experts, and website experts completed the anonymous surveys. Descriptive statistics and paired t tests were used to compare mean difference in post- minus pre-knowledge test scores. Knowledge scores statistically improved for nursing students (p value less than 0.0001). Emergency department providers showed a mean improvement of 3.2 points on the eight-item knowledge assessment. Both SCD experts and ED providers agreed that the module content was clear and easy to understand, accurate, comprehensive, relevant, and met module objectives. Participants agreed that the website was clear, easy to navigate, and visually appealing. Website experts stated that the website met much of the Health on the Net criteria. The website is a useful resource for providers and nursing students, especially those who serve or plan to serve in EDs. PMID:27139134

  8. Multidetector computed tomography in the evaluation of pediatric acute abdominal pain in the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Lin, Wei-Ching; Lin, Chien-Heng

    2016-06-01

    The accurate diagnosis of pediatric acute abdominal pain is one of the most challenging tasks in the emergency department (ED) due to its unclear clinical presentation and non-specific findings in physical examinations, laboratory data, and plain radiographs. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of abdominal multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) performed in the ED on pediatric patients presenting with acute abdominal pain. A retrospective chart review of children aged <18 years with acute abdominal pain who visited the emergency department and underwent MDCT between September 2004 and June 2007 was conducted. Patients with a history of trauma were excluded. A total of 156 patients with acute abdominal pain (85 males and 71 females, age 1-17 years; mean age 10.9 ± 4.6 years) who underwent abdominal MDCT in the pediatric ED during this 3-year period were enrolled in the study. One hundred and eighteen patients with suspected appendicitis underwent abdominal MDCT. Sixty four (54.2%) of them had appendicitis, which was proven by histopathology. The sensitivity of abdominal MDCT for appendicitis was found to be 98.5% and the specificity was 84.9%. In this study, the other two common causes of nontraumatic abdominal emergencies were gastrointestinal tract (GI) infections and ovarian cysts. The most common etiology of abdominal pain in children that requires imaging with abdominal MDCT is appendicitis. MDCT has become a preferred and invaluable imaging modality in evaluating uncertain cases of pediatric acute abdominal pain in ED, in particular for suspected appendicitis, neoplasms, and gastrointestinal abnormalities. PMID:27154197

  9. Optomechanical considerations for realistic tolerancing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Eric; Sasián, José; Youngworth, Richard N.

    2013-09-01

    Optical tolerancing simulation has improved so that the modeling of optomechanical accuracy can better predict as-built performance. A key refinement being proposed within this paper is monitoring formal interference fits and checking lens elements within their mechanical housings. Without proper checks, simulations may become physically unrealizable and pessimistic, thereby resulting in lower simulated yields. An improved simulation method has been defined and demonstrated in this paper with systems that do not have barrel constraints. The demonstration cases clearly show the trend of the beneficial impact with yield results, as a yield increase of 36.3% to 39.2% is garnered by one example. Considerations in simulating the realistic optomechanical system will assist in controlling cost and providing more accurate simulation results.

  10. Realistic Ground Motion Scenarios: Methodological Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Nunziata, C.; Peresan, A.; Romanelli, F.; Vaccari, F.; Zuccolo, E.; Panza, G. F.

    2008-07-08

    The definition of realistic seismic input can be obtained from the computation of a wide set of time histories, corresponding to possible seismotectonic scenarios. The propagation of the waves in the bedrock from the source to the local laterally varying structure is computed with the modal summation technique, while in the laterally heterogeneous structure the finite difference method is used. The definition of shear wave velocities within the soil cover is obtained from the non-linear inversion of the dispersion curve of group velocities of Rayleigh waves, artificially or naturally generated. Information about the possible focal mechanisms of the sources can be obtained from historical seismicity, based on earthquake catalogues and inversion of isoseismal maps. In addition, morphostructural zonation and pattern recognition of seismogenic nodes is useful to identify areas prone to strong earthquakes, based on the combined analysis of topographic, tectonic, geological maps and satellite photos. We show that the quantitative knowledge of regional geological structures and the computation of realistic ground motion can be a powerful tool for a preventive definition of the seismic hazard in Italy. Then, the formulation of reliable building codes, based on the evaluation of the main potential earthquakes, will have a great impact on the effective reduction of the seismic vulnerability of Italian urban areas, validating or improving the national building code.

  11. Realistic modeling of neurons and networks: towards brain simulation

    PubMed Central

    D’Angelo, Egidio; Solinas, Sergio; Garrido, Jesus; Casellato, Claudia; Pedrocchi, Alessandra; Mapelli, Jonathan; Gandolfi, Daniela; Prestori, Francesca

    Summary Realistic modeling is a new advanced methodology for investigating brain functions. Realistic modeling is based on a detailed biophysical description of neurons and synapses, which can be integrated into microcircuits. The latter can, in turn, be further integrated to form large-scale brain networks and eventually to reconstruct complex brain systems. Here we provide a review of the realistic simulation strategy and use the cerebellar network as an example. This network has been carefully investigated at molecular and cellular level and has been the object of intense theoretical investigation. The cerebellum is thought to lie at the core of the forward controller operations of the brain and to implement timing and sensory prediction functions. The cerebellum is well described and provides a challenging field in which one of the most advanced realistic microcircuit models has been generated. We illustrate how these models can be elaborated and embedded into robotic control systems to gain insight into how the cellular properties of cerebellar neurons emerge in integrated behaviors. Realistic network modeling opens up new perspectives for the investigation of brain pathologies and for the neurorobotic field. PMID:24139652

  12. Emergency and backup power supplies at Department of Energy facilities: Augmented Evaluation Team -- Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-11-01

    This report documents the results of the Defense Programs (DP) Augmented Evaluation Team (AET) review of emergency and backup power supplies (i.e., generator, uninterruptible power supply, and battery systems) at DP facilities. The review was conducted in response to concerns expressed by former Secretary of Energy James D. Watkins over the number of incidents where backup power sources failed to provide electrical power during tests or actual demands. The AET conducted a series of on-site reviews for the purpose of understanding the design, operation, maintenance, and safety significance of emergency and backup power (E&BP) supplies. The AET found that the quality of programs related to maintenance of backup power systems varies greatly among the sites visited, and often among facilities at the same site. No major safety issues were identified. However, there are areas where the AET believes the reliability of emergency and backup power systems can and should be improved. Recommendations for improving the performance of E&BP systems are provided in this report. The report also discusses progress made by Management and Operating (M&O) contractors to improve the reliability of backup sources used in safety significant applications. One area that requires further attention is the analysis and understanding of the safety implications of backup power equipment. This understanding is needed for proper graded-approach implementation of Department of Energy (DOE) Orders, and to help ensure that equipment important to the safety of DOE workers, the public, and the environment is identified, classified, recognized, and treated as such by designers, users, and maintainers. Another area considered important for improving E&BP system performance is the assignment of overall ownership responsibility and authority for ensuring that E&BP equipment performs adequately and that reliability and availability are maintained at acceptable levels.

  13. UAV Deployment Exercise for Mapping Purposes: Evaluation of Emergency Response Applications

    PubMed Central

    Boccardo, Piero; Chiabrando, Filiberto; Dutto, Furio; Giulio Tonolo, Fabio; Lingua, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Exploiting the decrease of costs related to UAV technology, the humanitarian community started piloting the use of similar systems in humanitarian crises several years ago in different application fields, i.e., disaster mapping and information gathering, community capacity building, logistics and even transportation of goods. Part of the author’s group, composed of researchers in the field of applied geomatics, has been piloting the use of UAVs since 2006, with a specific focus on disaster management application. In the framework of such activities, a UAV deployment exercise was jointly organized with the Regional Civil Protection authority, mainly aimed at assessing the operational procedures to deploy UAVs for mapping purposes and the usability of the acquired data in an emergency response context. In the paper the technical features of the UAV platforms will be described, comparing the main advantages/disadvantages of fixed-wing versus rotor platforms. The main phases of the adopted operational procedure will be discussed and assessed especially in terms of time required to carry out each step, highlighting potential bottlenecks and in view of the national regulation framework, which is rapidly evolving. Different methodologies for the processing of the acquired data will be described and discussed, evaluating the fitness for emergency response applications. PMID:26147728

  14. Evaluation of Emerging Energy-Efficient Heterogeneous Computing Platforms for Biomolecular and Cellular Simulation Workloads

    PubMed Central

    Stone, John E.; Hallock, Michael J.; Phillips, James C.; Peterson, Joseph R.; Luthey-Schulten, Zaida; Schulten, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    Many of the continuing scientific advances achieved through computational biology are predicated on the availability of ongoing increases in computational power required for detailed simulation and analysis of cellular processes on biologically-relevant timescales. A critical challenge facing the development of future exascale supercomputer systems is the development of new computing hardware and associated scientific applications that dramatically improve upon the energy efficiency of existing solutions, while providing increased simulation, analysis, and visualization performance. Mobile computing platforms have recently become powerful enough to support interactive molecular visualization tasks that were previously only possible on laptops and workstations, creating future opportunities for their convenient use for meetings, remote collaboration, and as head mounted displays for immersive stereoscopic viewing. We describe early experiences adapting several biomolecular simulation and analysis applications for emerging heterogeneous computing platforms that combine power-efficient system-on-chip multi-core CPUs with high-performance massively parallel GPUs. We present low-cost power monitoring instrumentation that provides sufficient temporal resolution to evaluate the power consumption of individual CPU algorithms and GPU kernels. We compare the performance and energy efficiency of scientific applications running on emerging platforms with results obtained on traditional platforms, identify hardware and algorithmic performance bottlenecks that affect the usability of these platforms, and describe avenues for improving both the hardware and applications in pursuit of the needs of molecular modeling tasks on mobile devices and future exascale computers. PMID:27516922

  15. Simulator Evaluation of Simplified Propulsion-Only Emergency Flight Control Systems on Transport Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Kaneshige, John; Bull, John; Maine, Trindel A.

    1999-01-01

    With the advent of digital engine control systems, considering the use of engine thrust for emergency flight control has become feasible. Many incidents have occurred in which engine thrust supplemented or replaced normal aircraft flight controls. In most of these cases, a crash has resulted, and more than 1100 lives have been lost. The NASA Dryden Flight Research Center has developed a propulsion-controlled aircraft (PCA) system in which computer-controlled engine thrust provides emergency flight control capability. Using this PCA system, an F-15 and an MD-11 airplane have been landed without using any flight controls. In simulations, C-17, B-757, and B-747 PCA systems have also been evaluated successfully. These tests used full-authority digital electronic control systems on the engines. Developing simpler PCA systems that can operate without full-authority engine control, thus allowing PCA technology to be installed on less capable airplanes or at lower cost, is also a desire. Studies have examined simplified ?PCA Ultralite? concepts in which thrust control is provided using an autothrottle system supplemented by manual differential throttle control. Some of these concepts have worked well. The PCA Ultralite study results are presented for simulation tests of MD-11, B-757, C-17, and B-747 aircraft.

  16. UAV Deployment Exercise for Mapping Purposes: Evaluation of Emergency Response Applications.

    PubMed

    Boccardo, Piero; Chiabrando, Filiberto; Dutto, Furio; Tonolo, Fabio Giulio; Lingua, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Exploiting the decrease of costs related to UAV technology, the humanitarian community started piloting the use of similar systems in humanitarian crises several years ago in different application fields, i.e., disaster mapping and information gathering, community capacity building, logistics and even transportation of goods. Part of the author's group, composed of researchers in the field of applied geomatics, has been piloting the use of UAVs since 2006, with a specific focus on disaster management application. In the framework of such activities, a UAV deployment exercise was jointly organized with the Regional Civil Protection authority, mainly aimed at assessing the operational procedures to deploy UAVs for mapping purposes and the usability of the acquired data in an emergency response context. In the paper the technical features of the UAV platforms will be described, comparing the main advantages/disadvantages of fixed-wing versus rotor platforms. The main phases of the adopted operational procedure will be discussed and assessed especially in terms of time required to carry out each step, highlighting potential bottlenecks and in view of the national regulation framework, which is rapidly evolving. Different methodologies for the processing of the acquired data will be described and discussed, evaluating the fitness for emergency response applications. PMID:26147728

  17. Users' experiences of an emergency department patient admission predictive tool: A qualitative evaluation.

    PubMed

    Jessup, Melanie; Crilly, Julia; Boyle, Justin; Wallis, Marianne; Lind, James; Green, David; Fitzgerald, Gerard

    2016-09-01

    Emergency department overcrowding is an increasing issue impacting patients, staff and quality of care, resulting in poor patient and system outcomes. In order to facilitate better management of emergency department resources, a patient admission predictive tool was developed and implemented. Evaluation of the tool's accuracy and efficacy was complemented with a qualitative component that explicated the experiences of users and its impact upon their management strategies, and is the focus of this article. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 pertinent users, including bed managers, after-hours managers, specialty department heads, nurse unit managers and hospital executives. Analysis realised dynamics of accuracy, facilitating communication and enabling group decision-making Users generally welcomed the enhanced potential to predict and plan following the incorporation of the patient admission predictive tool into their daily and weekly decision-making processes. They offered astute feedback with regard to their responses when faced with issues of capacity and communication. Participants reported an growing confidence in making informed decisions in a cultural context that is continually moving from reactive to proactive. This information will inform further patient admission predictive tool development specifically and implementation processes generally. PMID:25916833

  18. Study Designs and Evaluation Models for Emergency Department Public Health Research

    PubMed Central

    Broderick, Kerry B.; Ranney, Megan L.; Vaca, Federico E.; D’Onofrio, Gail; Rothman, Richard E.; Rhodes, Karin V.; Becker, Bruce; Haukoos, Jason S.

    2011-01-01

    Public health research requires sound design and thoughtful consideration of potential biases that may influence the validity of results. It also requires careful implementation of protocols and procedures that are likely to translate from the research environment to actual clinical practice. This article is the product of a breakout session from the 2009 Academic Emergency Medicine consensus conference entitled “Public Health in the ED: Screening, Surveillance, and Intervention” and serves to describe in detail aspects of performing emergency department (ED)-based public health research, while serving as a resource for current and future researchers. In doing so, the authors describe methodologic features of study design, participant selection and retention, and measurements and analyses pertinent to public health research. In addition, a number of recommendations related to research methods and future investigations related to public health work in the ED are provided. Public health investigators are poised to make substantial contributions to this important area of research, but this will only be accomplished by employing sound research methodology in the context of rigorous program evaluation. PMID:20053232

  19. Tracking Pertussis and Evaluating Control Measures through Enhanced Pertussis Surveillance, Emerging Infections Program, United States

    PubMed Central

    Baumbach, Joan; Cieslak, Paul R.

    2015-01-01

    Despite high coverage with pertussis-containing vaccines, pertussis remains endemic to the United States. There have been increases in reported cases in recent years, punctuated by striking epidemics and shifting epidemiology, both of which raise questions about current policies regarding its prevention and control. Limited data on pertussis reported through the National Notifiable Disease Surveillance System have proved insufficient to answer these questions. To address shortcomings of national pertussis data, the Emerging Infections Program at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched Enhanced Pertussis Surveillance (EPS), which is characterized by systematic case ascertainment, augmented data collection, and collection of Bordetella pertussis isolates. Data collected through EPS have been instrumental in understanding the rapidly evolving epidemiology and molecular epidemiology of pertussis and have contributed essential information regarding pertussis vaccines. EPS also serves as a platform for conducting critical and timely evaluations of pertussis prevention and control strategies, including targeting of vaccinations and antimicrobial prophylaxis. PMID:26291475

  20. Implementation and performance evaluation of mobile ad hoc network for Emergency Telemedicine System in disaster areas.

    PubMed

    Kim, J C; Kim, D Y; Jung, S M; Lee, M H; Kim, K S; Lee, C K; Nah, J Y; Lee, S H; Kim, J H; Choi, W J; Yoo, S K

    2009-01-01

    So far we have developed Emergency Telemedicine System (ETS) which is a robust system using heterogeneous networks. In disaster areas, however, ETS cannot be used if the primary network channel is disabled due to damages on the network infrastructures. Thus we designed network management software for disaster communication network by combination of Mobile Ad hoc Network (MANET) and Wireless LAN (WLAN). This software maintains routes to a Backbone Gateway Node in dynamic network topologies. In this paper, we introduce the proposed disaster communication network with management software, and evaluate its performance using ETS between Medical Center and simulated disaster areas. We also present the results of network performance analysis which identifies the possibility of actual Telemedicine Service in disaster areas via MANET and mobile network (e.g. HSDPA, WiBro). PMID:19964544

  1. Emergency Department Evaluation and Management of Children With Simple Febrile Seizures.

    PubMed

    Carapetian, Stephanie; Hageman, Joseph; Lyons, Evelyn; Leonard, Daniel; Janies, Kathryn; Kelley, Kent; Fuchs, Susan

    2015-09-01

    Workup of simple febrile seizures (SFS) has changed as the American Academy of Pediatrics made revisions to practice guidelines. In 2011, revisions were made regarding need for lumbar puncture (LP) as part of the SFS workup. This study surveyed more than 100 emergency departments regarding workup of children with SFS and performed a medical record review of workup that was performed. The survey shows that laboratory workup is done routinely and LP is done infrequently. The majority documents a complete exam. The medical record review demonstrates documentation of the examination, frequent laboratory and infrequent LP evaluation. Consistent with the American Academy of Pediatrics' revisions, survey and record reviews demonstrate that LP testing is infrequent. Contrary to the guideline, laboratory studies are routinely performed. This study suggests there is an opportunity to improve management of SFS by directing efforts toward finding the source of the fever and away from laboratory workup. PMID:25667312

  2. Tracking Pertussis and Evaluating Control Measures through Enhanced Pertussis Surveillance, Emerging Infections Program, United States.

    PubMed

    Skoff, Tami H; Baumbach, Joan; Cieslak, Paul R

    2015-09-01

    Despite high coverage with pertussis-containing vaccines, pertussis remains endemic to the United States. There have been increases in reported cases in recent years, punctuated by striking epidemics and shifting epidemiology, both of which raise questions about current policies regarding its prevention and control. Limited data on pertussis reported through the National Notifiable Disease Surveillance System have proved insufficient to answer these questions. To address shortcomings of national pertussis data, the Emerging Infections Program at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched Enhanced Pertussis Surveillance (EPS), which is characterized by systematic case ascertainment, augmented data collection, and collection of Bordetella pertussis isolates. Data collected through EPS have been instrumental in understanding the rapidly evolving epidemiology and molecular epidemiology of pertussis and have contributed essential information regarding pertussis vaccines. EPS also serves as a platform for conducting critical and timely evaluations of pertussis prevention and control strategies, including targeting of vaccinations and antimicrobial prophylaxis. PMID:26291475

  3. Allergy evaluation after emergency treatment: anaphylaxis to the over-the-counter medication clobutinol.

    PubMed

    Seitz, Cornelia S; Bröcker, Eva-B; Trautmann, Axel

    2007-03-01

    Anaphylaxis is traditionally diagnosed and treated as an acute emergency but should be always followed by a search for specific triggers, resulting in avoidance strategies. This case report highlights the relevance of a detailed evaluation after anaphylaxis for diagnosis of a rare but potentially life-threatening allergy. Considering the high frequency of clobutinol application, IgE-mediated allergic hypersensitivity seems extremely rare and has to be distinguished from infection-associated urticaria and angioedema as well as non-specific summation effects. Accidental re-exposure has to be strictly avoided and therefore after identification of clobutinol as the anaphylaxis trigger, the patient received detailed allergy documents including international non-proprietary and trade names of the culprit drug. PMID:17351213

  4. Allergy evaluation after emergency treatment: anaphylaxis to the over‐the‐counter medication clobutinol

    PubMed Central

    Seitz, Cornelia S; Bröcker, Eva‐B; Trautmann, Axel

    2007-01-01

    Anaphylaxis is traditionally diagnosed and treated as an acute emergency but should be always followed by a search for specific triggers, resulting in avoidance strategies. This case report highlights the relevance of a detailed evaluation after anaphylaxis for diagnosis of a rare but potentially life‐threatening allergy. Considering the high frequency of clobutinol application, IgE‐mediated allergic hypersensitivity seems extremely rare and has to be distinguished from infection‐associated urticaria and angioedema as well as non‐specific summation effects. Accidental re‐exposure has to be strictly avoided and therefore after identification of clobutinol as the anaphylaxis trigger, the patient received detailed allergy documents including international non‐proprietary and trade names of the culprit drug. PMID:17351213

  5. Recruitment strategies. Pharmacists' participation in an evaluation project to dispense emergency contraception.

    PubMed

    Cockerill, Rhonda; Cohen, Marsha; Dunn, Sheila; Brown, Thomas

    2004-03-01

    The objective of this article was to describe the effectiveness of a multifocus recruitment strategy to a pilot project allowing direct provision of emergency contraception (EC) in a community pharmacy through collaborative agreements between pharmacists and physicians. The project recruited pharmacies through direct appeals to pharmacists, pharmacy managers and/or owners, and corporate pharmacy chains. The evaluation project was successful in recruiting sufficient numbers of pharmacies to warrant proceeding with the project. The most successful component of the recruitment strategy was reference to the opportunities that participation offered to expand the pharmacist's role in patient-focused care. The importance of peer influence was also noted in terms of encouraging pharmacy involvement. PMID:14994560

  6. New methods for improved evaluation of patients with suspected acute coronary syndrome in the emergency department

    PubMed Central

    Ekelund, U; Forberg, J L

    2007-01-01

    This paper aims to identify and review new and unproven emergency department (ED) methods for improved evaluation in cases of suspected acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Systematic news coverage through PubMed from 2000 to 2006 identified papers on new methods for ED assessment of patients with suspected ACS. Articles found described decision support models, new ECG methods, new biomarkers and point‐of‐care testing, cardiac imaging, immediate exercise tests and the chest pain unit concept. None of these new methods is likely to be the perfect solution, and the best strategy today is therefore a combination of modern methods, where the optimal protocol depends on local resources and expertise. With a suitable combination of new methods, it is likely that more patients can be managed as outpatients, that length of stay can be shortened for those admitted, and that some patients with ACS can get earlier treatment. PMID:18029508

  7. Flight Simulator Evaluation of Enhanced Propulsion Control Modes for Emergency Operation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litt, Jonathan, S; Sowers, T.; Owen, A., Karl; Fulton, Christopher, E.; Chicatelli, Amy, K.

    2012-01-01

    This paper describes piloted evaluation of enhanced propulsion control modes for emergency operation of aircraft. Fast Response and Overthrust modes were implemented to assess their ability to help avoid or mitigate potentially catastrophic situations, both on the ground and in flight. Tests were conducted to determine the reduction in takeoff distance achievable using the Overthrust mode. Also, improvements in Dutch roll damping, enabled by using yaw rate feedback to the engines to replace the function of a stuck rudder, were investigated. Finally, pilot workload and ability to handle the impaired aircraft on approach and landing were studied. The results showed that improvement in all aspects is possible with these enhanced propulsion control modes, but the way in which they are initiated and incorporated is important for pilot comfort and perceived benefit.

  8. Headache in Pregnancy: An Approach to Emergency Department Evaluation and Management

    PubMed Central

    Schoen, Jessica C.; Campbell, Ronna L.; Sadosty, Annie T.

    2015-01-01

    Headache is a common presenting complaint in the emergency department. The differential diagnosis is broad and includes benign primary causes as well as ominous secondary causes. The diagnosis and management of headache in the pregnant patient presents several challenges. There are important unique considerations regarding the differential diagnosis, imaging options, and medical management. Physiologic changes induced by pregnancy increase the risk of cerebral venous thrombosis, dissection, and pituitary apoplexy. Preeclampsia, a serious condition unique to pregnancy, must also be considered. A high index of suspicion for carbon monoxide toxicity should be maintained. Primary headaches should be a diagnosis of exclusion. When advanced imaging is indicated, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) should be used, if available, to reduce radiation exposure. Contrast agents should be avoided unless absolutely necessary. Medical therapy should be selected with careful consideration of adverse fetal effects. Herein, we present a review of the literature and discuss an approach to the evaluation and management of headache in pregnancy PMID:25834672

  9. Microfluidic technology as an emerging clinical tool to evaluate thrombosis and hemostasis

    PubMed Central

    Branchford, Brian R.; Ng, Christopher J.; Neeves, Keith B.; Di Paola, Jorge

    2015-01-01

    Assessment of platelet function and coagulation under flow conditions can augment traditional static assays used to evaluate patients with suspected hemostatic or thrombotic disorders. Among the available flow-based assays, microfluidic devices require the smallest blood volume and provide multiple output options. These assays are based on the presence of wall shear stress that mimics in vivo interactions between blood components and vessel walls. Microfluidic devices can generate essential information regarding homeostatic regulation of platelet activation and subsequent engagement of the coagulation cascade leading to fibrin deposition and clot formation. Emerging data suggest that microfluidic assays may also reveal consistent patterns of hemostatic or thrombotic pathology, and could aid in assessing and monitoring patient-specific effects of coagulation-modifying therapies. PMID:26014643

  10. Emergent Expertise?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGivern, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    The concept of emergence appears in various places within the literature on expertise and expert practice. Here, I examine some of these applications of emergence in the light of two prominent accounts of emergence from the philosophy of science and philosophy of mind. I evaluate these accounts with respect to several specific contexts in which…

  11. Evaluation of emerging factors blocking filtration of high-adjunct-ratio wort.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ting; Zhu, Linjiang; Zheng, Feiyun; Li, Yongxian; Li, Qi

    2014-08-20

    Corn starch has become a common adjunct for beer brewing in Chinese breweries. However, with increasing ratio of corn starch, problems like poor wort filtration performance arise, which will decrease production capacity of breweries. To solve this problem, factors affecting wort filtration were evaluated, such as the size of corn starch particle, special yellow floats formed during liquefaction of corn starch, and residual substance after liquefaction. The effects of different enzyme preparations including β-amylase and β-glucanase on filtration rate were also evaluated. The results indicate that the emerging yellow floats do not severely block filtration, while the fine and uniform-shape corn starch particle and its incompletely hydrolyzed residue after liquefaction are responsible for filtration blocking. Application of β-amylase preparation increased the filtration rate of liquefied corn starch. This study is useful for our insight into the filtration blocking problem arising in the process of high-adjunct-ratio beer brewing and also provides a feasible solution using enzyme preparations. PMID:25088033

  12. Evaluation of BWR emergency procedure guidelines for BWR ATWS using RAMONA-3B code

    SciTech Connect

    Neymotin, L.; Slovik, G.; Cazzoli, E.; Saha, P.

    1985-01-01

    An MSIV Closure ATWS calculation for a typical BWR/4 (Browns Ferry, Unit 1) was performed using the RAMONA-3B code which is a BWR systems transient code combining three-dimensional neutronic core representation with multi-channel one-dimensional thermal hydraulics. The main objective of the study was to perform a best-estimate evaluation of the recently proposed Emergency Procedure Guidelines for Anticipated Transients Without Scram (ATWS). Emphasis was placed on evaluating the effects of lowering the downcomer water level to the Top of Active Fuel (TAF) and vessel depressurization. The calculation was run up to approximately 1200 seconds. Both actions, namely, lowering the water level and vessel depressurization, lowered the reactor power to some extent. However, the pressure suppression pool water temperature still reached approximately 90/sup 0/C (potential High Pressure Coolant Injection (HPCI) pump seal failure temperature) in twenty minutes. Thus, other actions such as boron injection and/or manual control rod insertion are necessary to mitigate a BWR/4 Main Steam Isolation Valve (MSIV) closure ATWS. 19 refs., 14 figs., 3 tabs.

  13. Evaluation of PACS at Hammersmith Hospital: assessment of radiology performance in the accident and emergency department

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weatherburn, Gwyneth C.; Bryan, Stirling; Cocks, Robert

    1993-09-01

    In the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E) x-ray images are used to assist in the initial diagnosis and management of the patient. It is therefore expected that the main benefits of PACS in A&E will arise from the ability of clinicians to manipulate the digital image and thus potentially improve their diagnostic performance. In order to evaluate whether this benefit is realized or not a case-study evaluation has been undertaken; this has three components: (a) monitoring the extent of misdiagnosis by A&E clinicians before and after the PACS implementation; (b) an examination of the decision performance of the clinician-image combination for the visualization of the lower cervical spine/upper thoracic spine and of fracture of the head of the radius; and (c) a more general monitoring of the impact of the image archiving and communication aspects of PACS. In this paper the study of the impact of PACS on misdiagnosis by A&E clinicians at the Hammersmith Hospital, London, is described and pre-PACS results for the period 31 March 1992 to 30 September 1992 are presented.

  14. A new head phantom with realistic shape and spatially varying skull resistivity distribution.

    PubMed

    Li, Jian-Bo; Tang, Chi; Dai, Meng; Liu, Geng; Shi, Xue-Tao; Yang, Bin; Xu, Can-Hua; Fu, Feng; You, Fu-Sheng; Tang, Meng-Xing; Dong, Xiu-Zhen

    2014-02-01

    Brain electrical impedance tomography (EIT) is an emerging method for monitoring brain injuries. To effectively evaluate brain EIT systems and reconstruction algorithms, we have developed a novel head phantom that features realistic anatomy and spatially varying skull resistivity. The head phantom was created with three layers, representing scalp, skull, and brain tissues. The fabrication process entailed 3-D printing of the anatomical geometry for mold creation followed by casting to ensure high geometrical precision and accuracy of the resistivity distribution. We evaluated the accuracy and stability of the phantom. Results showed that the head phantom achieved high geometric accuracy, accurate skull resistivity values, and good stability over time and in the frequency domain. Experimental impedance reconstructions performed using the head phantom and computer simulations were found to be consistent for the same perturbation object. In conclusion, this new phantom could provide a more accurate test platform for brain EIT research. PMID:24196845

  15. Gravity waves in a realistic atmosphere.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liemohn, H. B.; Midgley, J. E.

    1966-01-01

    Internal atmospheric gravity waves in isothermal medium, solving hydrodynamic equations, determining wave propagation in realistic atmosphere for range of wave parameters, wind amplitude, reflected energy, etc

  16. Medical Operations Console Procedure Evaluation: BME Response to Crew Call Down for an Emergency

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson-Troop; Pettys, Marianne; Hurst, Victor, IV; Smaka, Todd; Paul, Bonnie; Rosenquist, Kevin; Gast, Karin; Gillis, David; McCulley, Phyllis

    2006-01-01

    International Space Station (ISS) Mission Operations are managed by multiple flight control disciplines located at the lead Mission Control Center (MCC) at NASA-Johnson Space Center (JSC). ISS Medical Operations are supported by the complementary roles of Flight Surgeons (Surgeon) and Biomedical Engineer (BME) flight controllers. The Surgeon, a board certified physician, oversees all medical concerns of the crew and the BME provides operational and engineering support for Medical Operations Crew Health Care System. ISS Medical Operations is currently addressing the coordinated response to a crew call down for an emergent medical event, in particular when the BME is the only Medical Operations representative in MCC. In this case, the console procedure BME Response to Crew Call Down for an Emergency will be used. The procedure instructs the BME to contact a Surgeon as soon as possible, coordinate with other flight disciplines to establish a Private Medical Conference (PMC) for the crew and Surgeon, gather information from the crew if time permits, and provide Surgeon with pertinent console resources. It is paramount that this procedure is clearly written and easily navigated to assist the BME to respond consistently and efficiently. A total of five BME flight controllers participated in the study. Each BME participant sat in a simulated MCC environment at a console configured with resources specific to the BME MCC console and was presented with two scripted emergency call downs from an ISS crew member. Each participant used the procedure while interacting with analog MCC disciplines to respond to the crew call down. Audio and video recordings of the simulations were analyzed and each BME participant's actions were compared to the procedure. Structured debriefs were conducted at the conclusion of both simulations. The procedure was evaluated for its ability to elicit consistent responses from each BME participant. Trials were examined for deviations in procedure task

  17. 1992 update of US EPA's Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Emerging Technology Program

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, N.M.; Barkley, N.P.; Williams, T. )

    1992-12-01

    The Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Emerging Technology Program (ETP) has financially supported further development of bench- and pilot-scale testing and evaluation of innovative technologies for use at hazardous waste sites for five years. The ETP was established under the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) of 1986. The ETP complies with the goal of the SITE Program to promote, accelerate and make commercially available the development of alternative/innovative treatment technologies for use at Superfund sites. Technologies are submitted to the ETP through yearly solicitations for Preproposals. Applicants are asked to submit a detailed project proposal and a cooperative agreement application that requires Developer/EPA cost sharing. EPA co-funds selected Developers for one to two years. Second-year funding requires documentation of significant progress during the first year. Facilities, equipment, data collection, performance and development are monitored throughout the project. The US Department of Energy (DOE) and the US Air Force (USAF) are participants in the ETP. DOE has co-funded ETP projects since 1990 and the USAF since 1991. A goal of the ETP is to move developed technologies to the field-demonstration stage. A developer may be considered for participation in the SITE Demonstration Program if performance in the ETP indicates the technology is field-ready for evaluation. Six technology categories: biological, chemical, materials handling, physical, solidification/stabilization and thermal, are presently in the ETP. Technologies of primary interest to EPA are those that can treat complex mixtures of hazardous organic and inorganic contaminants and provide improved solids handling and/or pretreatment. An account of the background and progress of the ETP's first five years is presented in this paper. Technologies currently in the ETP are noted, and developers and EPA Project Managers, are listed. 4 refs., 11 figs., 6 tabs.

  18. An Independent Human Factors Analysis and Evaluation of the Emergency Medical Protocol Checklist for the International Space Station

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshburn, Thomas; Whitmore, Mihriban; Ortiz, Rosie; Segal, Michele; Smart, Kieran; Hughes, Catherine

    2003-01-01

    Emergency medical capabilities aboard the ISS include a Crew Medical Officer (CMO) (not necessarily a physician), and back-up, resuscitation equipment, and a medical checklist. It is essential that CMOs have reliable, usable and informative medical protocols that can be carried out independently in flight. The study evaluates the existing ISS Medical Checklist layout against a checklist updated to reflect a human factors approach to structure and organization. Method: The ISS Medical checklist was divided into non-emergency and emergency sections, and re-organized based on alphabetical and a body systems approach. A desk-top evaluation examined the ability of subjects to navigate to specific medical problems identified as representative of likely non-emergency events. A second evaluation aims to focus on the emergency section of the Medical Checklist, based on the preliminary findings of the first. The final evaluation will use Astronaut CMOs as subjects comparing the original checklist against the updated layout in the task of caring for a "downed crewmember" using a Human Patient Simulator [Medical Education Technologies, Inc.]. Results: Initial results have demonstrated a clear improvement of the re-organized sections to determine the solution to the medical problems. There was no distinct advantage for either alternative, although subjects stated having a preference for the body systems approach. In the second evaluation, subjects will be asked to identify emergency medical conditions, with measures including correct diagnosis, time to completion and solution strategy. The third evaluation will compare the original and fully updated checklists in clinical situations. Conclusions: Initial findings indicate that the ISS Medical Checklist will benefit from a reorganization. The present structure of the checklist has evolved over recent years without systematic testing of crewmember ability to diagnose medical problems. The improvements are expected to enable ISS

  19. Protective Action Evaluator for Chemical Emergencies: A user's manual (MS-DOS reg sign Version 1. 0)

    SciTech Connect

    Rogers, G.O.; Sharp, R.D.

    1990-10-01

    The protective action evaluator for chemical emergencies (PAECE) is a package of computer programs developed to simulate an emergency response to airborne release of chemical agents. This user's manual documents the use of PAECE in the evaluation of chemical agent emergencies in areas potentially affected by the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Planning Program (CSEPP). This research documents the development and use of a method for the evaluation of protective action alternatives in conjunction with potential chemical agent emergencies. The user's manual highlights the development of the PAECE model, the selection of appropriate parameters to represent various scenarios, generate results and interpret them in the analysis of protective action alternatives during the planning and preparedness phases of the CSEPP. The PAECE model is designed to evaluate protective actions in the context of potential accidents, the emergency management systems required to implement protective actions, and the anticipated consequences for human receptors. The implications and uncertainties of the model are discussed to provide potential users with insight into the use, limitations, and uncertainties associated with evaluating the effectiveness of protective action alternatives. While PAECE represents a unique and powerful tool to evaluate protective actions, the user must exercise caution when interpreting the results to avoid misrepresentation. The expected value interpretation of the PAECE results biases the results toward extreme values. Hence, the PAECE results have to be interpreted in the context exposures similar to those represented by the unprotected exposure and the protection capacity that tend to be associated with people completing the implementation of the required actions later than and earlier than average, respectively. 16 refs., 24 figs., 1 tab. (JF)

  20. Bosonic condensates in realistic supersymmetric GUT cosmic strings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allys, Erwan

    2016-04-01

    We study the realistic structure of F-term Nambu-Goto cosmic strings forming in a general supersymmetric Grand Unified Theory implementation, assuming standard hybrid inflation. Examining the symmetry breaking of the unification gauge group down to the Standard Model, we discuss the minimal field content necessary to describe abelian cosmic strings appearing at the end of inflation. We find that several fields will condense in most theories, questioning the plausible occurrence of associated currents (bosonic and fermionic). We perturbatively evaluate the modification of their energy per unit length due to the condensates. We provide a criterion for comparing the usual abelian Higgs approximation used in cosmology to realistic situations.

  1. Evaluation of immunochromatographic tests for the rapid detection of the emerging GII.17 norovirus in stool samples, January 2016.

    PubMed

    Théry, Lucie; Bidalot, Maxime; Pothier, Pierre; Ambert-Balay, Katia

    2016-01-01

    A novel GII.17 norovirus emerged in Asia in the winter of 2014/15. A worldwide spread is conceivable and norovirus diagnostic assays need to be evaluated to investigate if they adequately detect this emerging genotype. Seven immunochromatographic kits commercially available in Europe were evaluated on ten stool samples where GII.17 virus had been quantified by real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. All the kits detected GII.17 with various sensitivities, partly depending on the virus titre. PMID:26848594

  2. Realistic Control of Network Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Cornelius, Sean P.; Kath, William L.; Motter, Adilson E.

    2014-01-01

    The control of complex networks is of paramount importance in areas as diverse as ecosystem management, emergency response, and cell reprogramming. A fundamental property of networks is that perturbations to one node can affect other nodes, potentially causing the entire system to change behavior or fail. Here, we show that it is possible to exploit the same principle to control network behavior. Our approach accounts for the nonlinear dynamics inherent to real systems, and allows bringing the system to a desired target state even when this state is not directly accessible due to constraints that limit the allowed interventions. Applications show that this framework permits reprogramming a network to a desired task as well as rescuing networks from the brink of failure—which we illustrate through the mitigation of cascading failures in a power-grid network and the identification of potential drug targets in a signaling network of human cancer. PMID:23803966

  3. Role of presepsin for the evaluation of sepsis in the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Pizzolato, Elisa; Ulla, Marco; Galluzzo, Claudia; Lucchiari, Manuela; Manetta, Tilde; Lupia, Enrico; Mengozzi, Giulio; Battista, Stefania

    2014-10-01

    Sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock are among the most common conditions handled in the emergency department (ED). According to new Sepsis Guidelines, early diagnosis and treatment are the keys to improve survival. Plasma C-reactive protein (CRP) and procalcitonin (PCT) levels, when associated with documented or suspected infection, are now part of the definitions of sepsis. Blood culture is the gold standard method for detecting microorganisms but it requires too much time for results to be known. Sensitive biomarkers are required for early diagnosis and as indexes of prognosis sepsis. CRP is one of the acute phase proteins synthesized by the liver: it has a great sensitivity but a very poor specificity for bacterial infections. Moreover, the evolution of sepsis does not correlate with CRP plasma changes. In recent years PCT has been widely used for sepsis differential diagnosis, because of its close correlation with infections, but it still retains some limitations and false positivity (such as in multiple trauma and burns). Soluble CD14 subtype (sCD14-ST), also known as presepsin, is a novel and promising biomarker that has been shown to increase significantly in patients with sepsis, in comparison to the healthy population. Studies pointed out the capability of this biomarker for diagnosing sepsis, assessing the severity of the disease and providing a prognostic evaluation of patient outcome. In this mini review we mainly focused on presepsin: we evaluate its diagnostic and prognostic roles in patients presenting to the ED with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), suspected sepsis or septic shock. PMID:24897403

  4. Emergency department imaging protocol for suspected acute renal colic: re-evaluating our service

    PubMed Central

    Patatas, K; Panditaratne, N; Wah, T M; Weston, M J; Irving, H C

    2012-01-01

    Objectives The objective of our study is to determine the positive rate for urolithiasis in male and female patients, and evaluate whether there has been any change at our institution in the use and outcome of unenhanced multidetector CT (CT KUB) performed in the emergency department (ER) for patients presenting with suspected acute renal colic. Methods A retrospective review of all 1357 consecutive cases between August 2007 and August 2009 admitted to the ER and investigated with CT KUB. Results The positive rate for urolithiasis was 47.5% and the rate of other significant findings was 10%. Female patients had a significantly lower positive rate than male patients (26.8% vs 61.6%, p<0.001). Urological intervention was required in 37% and these patients had a larger average stone size. In young female patients with a significantly sized ureteric calculus (>4 mm), the presence of hydronephrosis vs no hydronephrosis was 83% vs 17%, respectively. Among them, only three patients required ureteroscopy for stone removal. Conclusion Contrary to other studies there has been no “indication creep” in the use of CT KUB at our institution. However, the young female patient presenting with suspected urolithiasis presents a particular diagnostic problem, and the significant percentage of negative examinations in females implies that an improvement in current practice is needed. The indiscriminate use of CT KUB in all female patients with flank pain should be avoided, and it is suggested that they should be initially evaluated with ultrasound to detect the presence of hydronephrosis. PMID:22496069

  5. Developing and evaluating an automated appendicitis risk stratification algorithm for pediatric patients in the emergency department

    PubMed Central

    Deleger, Louise; Brodzinski, Holly; Zhai, Haijun; Li, Qi; Lingren, Todd; Kirkendall, Eric S; Alessandrini, Evaline; Solti, Imre

    2013-01-01

    Objective To evaluate a proposed natural language processing (NLP) and machine-learning based automated method to risk stratify abdominal pain patients by analyzing the content of the electronic health record (EHR). Methods We analyzed the EHRs of a random sample of 2100 pediatric emergency department (ED) patients with abdominal pain, including all with a final diagnosis of appendicitis. We developed an automated system to extract relevant elements from ED physician notes and lab values and to automatically assign a risk category for acute appendicitis (high, equivocal, or low), based on the Pediatric Appendicitis Score. We evaluated the performance of the system against a manually created gold standard (chart reviews by ED physicians) for recall, specificity, and precision. Results The system achieved an average F-measure of 0.867 (0.869 recall and 0.863 precision) for risk classification, which was comparable to physician experts. Recall/precision were 0.897/0.952 in the low-risk category, 0.855/0.886 in the high-risk category, and 0.854/0.766 in the equivocal-risk category. The information that the system required as input to achieve high F-measure was available within the first 4 h of the ED visit. Conclusions Automated appendicitis risk categorization based on EHR content, including information from clinical notes, shows comparable performance to physician chart reviewers as measured by their inter-annotator agreement and represents a promising new approach for computerized decision support to promote application of evidence-based medicine at the point of care. PMID:24130231

  6. An evaluation of hospital emergency department (HED) adherence to universal precautions.

    PubMed

    Rydman, R J; Tannebaum, R D; Zalenski, R J

    1994-08-01

    A longitudinal cross sectional study of Hospital Emergency Department (HED) procedures over a nine month period was conducted. A total of 1,541 procedures were observed on 56 randomly selected 8-h work shifts. Shifts were distributed: 34% day shift; 34% evening shift; and 32% on the night shift. Observations on the evening shift were oversampled to capture an adequate number of trauma patients. Observations were distributed: 33% day shift; 39% evening shift; and 28% on the night shift. Measurements included: type of procedure; adherence to specific barrier technique, i.e., use of gloves, gowns, masks, and eye protection; and occurrence of adverse exposure. Ten types of HED procedures were documented and analyzed. Computerized tracking of study observations established periodic rates of HED health care worker (HCW) adherence to universal precautions. These data are important for internal quality control/assurance programs and rate comparisons within and across institutions over time. The longitudinal evaluation of the database revealed that glove compliance increased over the period of the study and adverse exposure decreased. Conducting ongoing or periodic observational studies of this kind are important and necessary in order to gauge HED response to the epidemiologic challenges of urban society. PMID:7829982

  7. Evaluation of emerging contaminants in a drinking water treatment plant using electrodialysis reversal technology.

    PubMed

    Gabarrón, S; Gernjak, W; Valero, F; Barceló, A; Petrovic, M; Rodríguez-Roda, I

    2016-05-15

    Emerging contaminants (EC) have gained much attention with globally increasing consumption and detection in aquatic ecosystems during the last two decades from ng/L to lower ug/L. The aim of this study was to evaluate the occurrence and removal of pharmaceutically active compounds (PhACs), endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and related compounds in a Drinking Water Treatment Plant (DWTP) treating raw water from the Mediterranean Llobregat River. The DWTP combined conventional treatment steps with the world's largest electrodialysis reversal (EDR) facility. 49 different PhACs, EDCs and related compounds were found above their limit of quantification in the influent of the DWTP, summing up to a total concentration of ECs between 1600-4200 ng/L. As expected, oxidation using chlorine dioxide and granular activated carbon filters were the most efficient technologies for EC removal. However, despite the low concentration detected in the influent of the EDR process, it was also possible to demonstrate that this process partially removed ionized compounds, thereby constituting an additional barrier against EC pollution in the product. In the product of the EDR system, only 18 out of 49 compounds were quantifiable in at least one of the four experimental campaigns, showing in all cases removals higher than 65% and often beyond 90% for the overall DWTP process. PMID:26894293

  8. Evaluation and risk stratification of patients with chest pain in the emergency department. Predictors of life-threatening events.

    PubMed

    Zalenski, R J; Shamsa, F; Pede, K J

    1998-08-01

    While assessing chest pain in the emergency department, physicians must first estimate the probability of acute ischemic states in the patient. This first estimate is based on the patient's history, physical examination, and electrocardiogram. Patients who meet the threshold for acute cardiac ischemia are further evaluated to confirm or exclude this diagnosis, while other life-threatening factors are excluded. PMID:9739772

  9. Novel effects-based monitoring approaches to evaluate chemicals of emerging concern in the St. Louis River estuary

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of an on-going program of research in support of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, the US EPA MED laboratory has been developing effects-based biomonitoring tools to evaluate the occurrence and potential hazards associated with Chemicals of Emerging Concern (CECs). ...

  10. Evaluation of the Emergency School Assistance Program. Volume II: Design and Findings of Phase I Survey. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    RMC Research Corp., Arlington, VA.

    An effort by the Office of Education to assist some 900 school districts, through financial aid, with the problems attendant with the final stages of their desegregation plan or the carrying out of a court-ordered plan is discussed. This effort, the Emergency School Assistance Program (ESAP), was evaluated to determine: (1) overall effectiveness,…

  11. Problems and Issues in Using Emerging Computer Technologies To Manage and Evaluate Instructional Programs 1, 2, 3.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atwood, Nancy K.

    School districts have begun examining the feasibility of, and in some cases are developing and implementing automated systems for, managing and evaluating instructional programs. This paper describes and analyzes the issues and problems that emerged over the course of three projects--a large suburban school in the West, a consortium of five small…

  12. Novel effects-based monitoring approaches to evaluate chemicals of emerging concern in Great Lakes areas of concern

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of an on-going program of research in support of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, we have been developing effects-based biomonitoring tools to evaluate the occurrence and potential hazards associated with Chemicals of Emerging Concern (CECs). Over three field seaso...

  13. Medical Team Evaluation: Effect on Emergency Department Waiting Time and Length of Stay

    PubMed Central

    Lauks, Juliane; Mramor, Blaz; Baumgartl, Klaus; Maier, Heinrich; Nickel, Christian H.; Bingisser, Roland

    2016-01-01

    Emergency Departments (ED) are trying to alleviate crowding using various interventions. We assessed the effect of an alternative model of care, the Medical Team Evaluation (MTE) concept, encompassing team triage, quick registration, redesign of triage rooms and electronic medical records (EMR) on door-to-doctor (waiting) time and ED length of stay (LOS). We conducted an observational, before-and-after study at an urban academic tertiary care centre. On July 17th 2014, MTE was initiated from 9:00 a.m. to 10 p.m., 7 days a week. A registered triage nurse was teamed with an additional senior ED physician. Data of the 5-month pre-MTE and the 5-month MTE period were analysed. A matched comparison of waiting times and ED LOS of discharged and admitted patients pertaining to various Emergency Severity Index (ESI) triage categories was performed based on propensity scores. With MTE, the median waiting times improved from 41.2 (24.8–66.6) to 10.2 (5.7–18.1) minutes (min; P < 0.01). Though being beneficial for all strata, the improvement was somewhat greater for discharged, than for admitted patients. With a reduction from 54.3 (34.2–84.7) to 10.5 (5.9–18.4) min (P < 0.01), in terms of waiting times, MTE was most advantageous for ESI4 patients. The overall median ED LOS increased for about 15 min (P < 0.01), increasing from 3.4 (2.1–5.3) to 3.7 (2.3–5.6) hours. A significant increase was observed for all the strata, except for ESI5 patients. Their median ED LOS dropped by 73% from 1.2 (0.8–1.8) to 0.3 (0.2–0.5) hours (P < 0.01). In the same period the total orders for diagnostic radiology increased by 1,178 (11%) from 10,924 to 12,102 orders, with more imaging tests being ordered for ESI 2, 3 and 4 patients. Despite improved waiting times a decrease of ED LOS was only seen in ESI level 5 patients, whereas in all the other strata ED LOS increased. We speculate that this was brought about by the tendency of triage physicians to order more diagnostic radiology

  14. Evaluating Crisis Intervention Services for Youth within an Emergency Department: A View from within

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dion, Jacinthe; Kennedy, Allison; Cloutier, Paula; Gray, Clare

    2010-01-01

    An innovative crisis intervention programme was created at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Canada in order to provide emergency assessments for youth presenting with mental health crises. The current investigation presents an overview of the programme and examines the emergency staff's perception and satisfaction with it.…

  15. Experimental evaluation of an interactive information processing aid for an emergency poison center.

    PubMed

    Robertson, C K

    1981-07-01

    In the recent literature, many studies have addressed the evaluation of the user interface in interactive systems. However, there are few theoretically based methodologies for this purpose. This study is an attempt to develop a methodology for examining the complex division of information processing labor between user and computer. A special concern was the computer-naive user searching for information using a self-teaching system. Our test bed was an emergency poison information center whose functioning depended on fast, accurate processing of patient and antidote data by a nurse. We augmented the nurses' traditional information support--a manual card file and reference books--with an interactive software system which summarized and suggested inferences from data on past successful treatment of patients. Analysis of recordings of user comments and user-system interactions showed that: (1) the support system should be more robust and have more "reasoning" power; and (2) the users' expressed information needs changed after the new support was introduced. From the results, we abstracted elements of an effective naive user-support system division of labor: (1) the support system should "actively" help the user's error recovery; (2) the system should have a sufficient knowledge base to allow "intelligent" conversation about the problem domain; and (3) the support system should allow the user to reconceptualize his information problem as his environment changes. Our method of recording user-system interactions and verbal protocols was time consuming, but did yield significant insight into the user-system division of labor. Also, considering the poison center as a living system, analysis of processing by the nurse and the traditional, the new, or an envisioned information support system showed that a highly dispersed associator and effective internal transducer promoted the functioning of the entire group. PMID:7247908

  16. Evaluating Contaminants of Emerging Concern as tracers of wastewater from septic systems.

    PubMed

    James, C Andrew; Miller-Schulze, Justin P; Ultican, Shawn; Gipe, Alex D; Baker, Joel E

    2016-09-15

    Bacterial and nutrient contamination from anthropogenic sources impacts fresh and marine waters, reducing water quality and restricting recreational and commercial activities. In many cases the source of this contamination is ambiguous, and a tracer or set of tracers linking contamination to source would be valuable. In this work, the effectiveness of utilizing a suite of Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CECs) as tracers of bacteria from human septic system effluent is investigated. Field sampling was performed at more than 20 locations over approximately 18 months and analyzed for a suite of CECs and fecal coliform bacteria. The sampling locations included seeps and small freshwater discharges to the shoreline. Sites were selected and grouped according to level of impact by septic systems as determined by previous field sampling programs. A subset of selected locations had been positively identified as being impacted by effluent from failing septic systems through dye testing. The CECs were selected based on their predominant use, their frequency of use, and putative fate and transport properties. In addition, two rounds of focused sampling were performed at selected sites to characterize short-term variations in CEC and fecal coliform concentrations, and to evaluate environmental persistence following source correction activities. The results indicate that a suite of common use compounds are suitable as generalized tracers of bacterial contamination from septic systems and that fate and transport properties are important in tracer selection. Highly recalcitrant or highly labile compounds likely follow different loss profiles in the subsurface compared to fecal bacteria and are not suitable tracers. The use of more than one tracer compound is recommended due to source variability of septic systems and to account for variations in the subsurface condition. In addition, concentrations of some CECs were measured in receiving waters at levels which suggested the

  17. [Evaluation of emergency services of the hospitals from the QualiSUS program].

    PubMed

    O'Dwyer, Gisele Oliveira; de Oliveira, Sergio Pacheco; de Seta, Marismary Horsth

    2009-01-01

    The aid lent by the emergency services is the object of this paper, which aims to assess the emergency service of the QualiSUS program. The study is descriptive with the application of a questionnaire to the responsible of the emergency services in eight hospitals. The emergency services were always overcrowded, and the causes pointed were the low resolutivity of basic attention and the precariousness of the hospital network. Contributing to this there is the primary care decreased resolutivity and the precariousness of the hospital network. Six hospitals do not manage the emergency service. The entrance system is not organized and only three hospitals work with risk classification. All of them refer difficulties with internal and external services. The hardest pathologies to refer to other services are the chronicles, neurological and social. The professionals do not have specific qualification and the precariousness job contracts do not contribute neither for the professional's fixation nor for his qualification. Clinical protocols are used by one service. It was noticed the influence of the QualiSUS in the hospitals. The failure of the health services network interferes with the emergency patient's profile. The investment of the QualiSUS cannot be restrained to the hospital. Emergency should be more integrated to the system and hospital. The qualification of human resources is indispensable as well as the bed's regulation. PMID:19851601

  18. Evaluation of child maltreatment in the emergency department setting: an overview for behavioral health providers.

    PubMed

    Leetch, Aaron N; Leipsic, John; Woolridge, Dale P

    2015-01-01

    Emergency providers are confronted with medical, social, and legal dilemmas with each case of possible child maltreatment. Keeping a high clinical suspicion is key to diagnosing latent abuse. Child abuse, especially sexual abuse, is best handled by a multidisciplinary team including emergency providers, nurses, social workers, and law enforcement trained in caring for victims and handling forensic evidence. The role of the emergency provider in such cases is to identify abuse, facilitate a thorough investigation, treat medical needs, protect the patient, provide an unbiased medical consultation to law enforcement, and provide an ethical testimony if called to court. PMID:25455575

  19. Evaluating the Pediatric Early Warning Score (PEWS) System for Admitted Patients in the Pediatric Emergency Department

    PubMed Central

    Gold, Delia L.; Mihalov, Leslie K.; Cohen, Daniel M.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives The Pediatric Early Warning Score (PEWS) systems were developed to provide a reproducible assessment of a child’s clinical status while hospitalized. Most studies investigating the PEWS evaluate its usefulness in the inpatient setting. Limited studies evaluate the effectiveness and integration of PEWS in the pediatric emergency department (ED). The goal of this study was to explore the test characteristics of an ED-assigned PEWS score for intensive care unit (ICU) admission or clinical deterioration in admitted patients. Methods This was a prospective 12-month observational study of patients, aged 0 to 21 years, admitted from the ED of an urban, tertiary care children’s hospital. ED nurses were instructed in PEWS assignment and electronic medical record (EMR) documentation. Interrater reliability between nurses was evaluated. PEWS scores were measured at initial assessment (P0) and time of admission (P1). Patients were stratified into outcome groups: those admitted to the ICU either from the ED or as transfers from the floor and those admitted to the floor only. Clinical deterioration was defined as transfer to the ICU within 6 hours or within 6 to 24 hours of admission. PEWS scores and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were compared for patients admitted to the floor, ICU, and with clinical deterioration. Results The authors evaluated 12,306 consecutively admitted patients, with 99% having a PEWS documented in the EMR. Interrater reliability was excellent (intraclass coefficient 0.91). A total of 1,300 (10.6%) patients were admitted to the ICU and 11,066 (89.4%) were admitted to the floor. PEWS scores were higher for patients in the ICU group (P0 = 2.8, SD ± 2.4; P1 = 3.2, SD ± 2.4; p < 0.0001) versus floor patients (P0 = 0.7, SD ± 1.2; P1 = 0.5, SD ± 0.9; p < 0.0001). To predict the need for ICU admission, the optimal cutoff points on the ROC are P0 = 1 and P1 = 2, with areas under the ROC curve (AUCs) of 0.79 and 0

  20. Vibration signaling in mobile devices for emergency alerting: a study with deaf evaluators.

    PubMed

    Harkins, Judith; Tucker, Paula E; Williams, Norman; Sauro, Jeff

    2010-01-01

    In the United States, a nationwide Commercial Mobile Alert Service (CMAS) is being planned to alert cellular mobile device subscribers to emergencies occurring near the location of the mobile device. The plan specifies a unique audio attention signal as well as a unique vibration attention signal (for mobile devices set to vibrate) to identify that the incoming message pertains to an emergency. Ratings of vibration signals of varying lengths and patterns were obtained from 44 deaf users of mobile devices for the perceived effectiveness of the signal in getting their attention in an emergency situation. Longer signals received higher ratings than shorter ones, and three signals with temporal on-off patterns were rated significantly better than a constant vibration. The U.S. government's recommended vibration signal for the CMAS, an important feature for access to emergency alerts by deaf persons, is supported by the results of the study. PMID:20511351

  1. Identifying preschool children at risk of later reading difficulties: evaluation of two emergent literacy screening tools.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Shauna B; Lonigan, Christopher J

    2010-01-01

    Emergent literacy skills are predictive of children's early reading success, and literacy achievement in early schooling declines more rapidly for children who are below-average readers. It is therefore important for teachers to identify accurately children at risk for later reading difficulty so children can be exposed to effective emergent literacy interventions. In this study, 176 preschoolers were administered two screening tools, the Revised Get Ready to Read! (GRTR-R) and the Individual Growth and Development Indicators (IGDIs), and a diagnostic measure at two time points. Receiver operating characteristic curve analyses revealed that, at optimal cut scores, GRTR-R provided more accurate classification of children's overall emergent literacy skills than did IGDIs. However, neither measure was particularly good at classifying specific emergent literacy skills. PMID:19822699

  2. Systems approach to detect and evaluate contaminants of emerging concern in the Great Lakes

    EPA Science Inventory

    The release of chemicals of emerging concern threatens near shore health in the Great Lakes, particularly in regions already suffering from degradation of water and environmental quality due to past and present anthropogenic activities. Critical issues remain in delisting Areas ...

  3. Marine Corps Recruit Training Attrition: The Effect of Realistic Job Preview and Stress-Coping Films.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Githens, William H.; Zalinski, James

    Two films were evaluated to determine their effectiveness in reducing attrition among Marine Corps recruits. The films were a realistic job preview of military training and a stress-coping film. Platoons of Marine recruits were randomly assigned to four treatment groups: viewing the realistic job preview film, viewing the stress-coping film,…

  4. An evidence-based approach to the evaluation and treatment of low back pain in the emergency department.

    PubMed

    Borczuk, Pierre

    2013-07-01

    Low back pain is the most common musculoskeletal complaint that results in a visit to the emergency department, and it is 1 of the top 5 most common complaints in emergency medicine. Estimates of annual healthcare expenditures for low back pain in the United States exceed $90 billion annually, not even taking lost productivity and business costs into account. This review explores an evidence-based rationale for the evaluation of the patient with low back pain, and it provides guidance on risk stratification pertaining to laboratory assessment and radiologic imaging in the emergency department. Published guidelines from the American College of Physicians and American Pain Society are reviewed, with emphasis on best evidence for pharmacologic treatments, self-care interventions, and more invasive procedures and surgery in management of low back pain. Utilizing effective and proven strategies will avoid medical errors, provide better care for patients, and help manage healthcare resources and costs. PMID:24044786

  5. Echocardiography, nuclear scintigraphy, and stress testing in the emergency department evaluation of acute coronary syndrome.

    PubMed

    Mather, P J; Shah, R

    2001-05-01

    There are between 3 and 5 million visits to EDs each year for complaints of chest pain. Of these, about one half of the patients have a noncardiac cause for their chest pain. Of the remainder, about 30% to 50% have significant coronary disease. It is quite clear that patients who are at high risk for a coronary event should be admitted to the hospital. For the low-to-moderate risk patients, the decision to admit or discharge the patient from the ED is not quite so easy. The emergency physician has to decide which tests can be helpful in the decision-making process, this can be undertaken in conjunction with a consultative cardiologist. It can be argued that if a patient does not have a normal test result whichever that evaluatory test is), then the patient should be admitted for further work-up and evaluation. The easiest test to perform in the ED setting is an echocardiogram. The images can be sent by telecommunication to a qualified echocardiogram reader for interpretation. This also has a reasonable NPV, although not necessarily as good as some of the other modalities available, unless interpreted in light of cardiac enzyme test results. If the index of suspicion is still high, then a stress echocardiogram can be considered. This has an excellent NPV and can be easily performed in [table: see text] most patients. This should not be undertaken in the face of an evolving MI, and patients should be observed for at least 8 hours after their initial presentation to the ED prior to undergoing a provocative test. Nuclear scintigraphy, another modality available for cardiac risk stratification, can be a logistical nightmare. The nuclear isotopes are strictly regulated by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The emergency physician may inject the isotopes, provided that he or she has undergone the necessary radiation training. Also, the patient must be removed from the ED to a radioisotope-approved area for the duration of the scan. One of the most difficult questions left

  6. Evaluation of the cytotoxicity, mutagenicity and antimutagenicity of emerging edible plants.

    PubMed

    Yen, G C; Chen, H Y; Peng, H H

    2001-11-01

    This study evaluates the toxic, mutagenic and antimutagenic effects of emerging edible plants that are consumed as new leafy vegetables in Taiwan. Among eight plant extracts, only the extracts of Sol (Solanum nigrum L.) showed cytotoxicity to Salmonella typhimurium TA100 in the absence of S9 mix. The toxicity of extracts from different parts of the Sol plant, such as leaf and stem, immature fruit and mature fruit, towards S. typhimurium TA100 and human lymphocytes was also assayed. The immature fruit extracts of Sol exhibited strong cytotoxicity with dose dependence and induced significant DNA damage in human lymphocytes based on the comet assay. However, no mutagenicity was found in eight plant extracts to TA98 or TA100 either with or without the S9 mixture. Sol and Sec [Sechium edule (Jacq.) Swartz] extracts showed the strongest inhibitory effect towards the mutagenicity of 2-amino-3-methyl-imidazo[4,5-f]quinoline (IQ) in S. typhimurium TA98 and TA100; the ID(50) was less then 1 mg/plate. Cra [Crassocephalum creidioides (Benth.) S. Moore] extracts also expressed moderate antimutagenic activities towards IQ and benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P) either in TA98 or in TA100; the ID(50) was 1.63-2.41 mg/plate. The extracts from Bas (Basella alba L.), Bou (Boussingaultia gracilis Miers var. pseudobaselloides Bailey), Cen (Centella asiatica L. Urban), Cor (Corchorus olitorius L.) and Por (Portulaca oleracea L.) showed weak to moderate inhibition of mutagenicity of IQ. However, the potential antimutagenicity of these plant extracts towards B[a]P was weaker than that towards IQ. For a direct mutagen, 4-nitroquinoline-N-oxide (NQNO), only the Sol extracts showed strong inhibitory effects in the TA100 system. The antimutagenic activity of water extracts of Sec was partly reduced by heating at 100 degrees C for 20 min. The heat-stable antimutagens in Sec extracts could be produced in the plant extract preparation process. Fractions with molecular weights above 30,000 showed the

  7. Thallium myocardial scanning in the emergency department evaluation of chest pain

    SciTech Connect

    Mace, S.E.

    1989-05-01

    Chest pain is a common complaint of patients seen in the emergency department. The causes are legion, and range from the non-life threatening to the potentially catastrophic. Thallium heart scanning was done prospectively in 20 patients with a ''classic'' history for myocardial infarction (eight patients) or atypical chest pain and/or associated symptoms plus an abnormal ECG (12 patients) to discern a subset of patients from whom thallium scintography may be indicated in the emergency department. Although further investigation is needed, our preliminary study suggests that myocardial scanning with thallium can be a safe, fairly rapid, and useful objective parameter in the emergency department detection of suspected myocardial infarction, and in differential diagnosis of chest pain when other data such as the history, physical examination, ECG, or enzymes are inconclusive.

  8. Blend Shape Interpolation and FACS for Realistic Avatar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alkawaz, Mohammed Hazim; Mohamad, Dzulkifli; Basori, Ahmad Hoirul; Saba, Tanzila

    2015-03-01

    The quest of developing realistic facial animation is ever-growing. The emergence of sophisticated algorithms, new graphical user interfaces, laser scans and advanced 3D tools imparted further impetus towards the rapid advancement of complex virtual human facial model. Face-to-face communication being the most natural way of human interaction, the facial animation systems became more attractive in the information technology era for sundry applications. The production of computer-animated movies using synthetic actors are still challenging issues. Proposed facial expression carries the signature of happiness, sadness, angry or cheerful, etc. The mood of a particular person in the midst of a large group can immediately be identified via very subtle changes in facial expressions. Facial expressions being very complex as well as important nonverbal communication channel are tricky to synthesize realistically using computer graphics. Computer synthesis of practical facial expressions must deal with the geometric representation of the human face and the control of the facial animation. We developed a new approach by integrating blend shape interpolation (BSI) and facial action coding system (FACS) to create a realistic and expressive computer facial animation design. The BSI is used to generate the natural face while the FACS is employed to reflect the exact facial muscle movements for four basic natural emotional expressions such as angry, happy, sad and fear with high fidelity. The results in perceiving the realistic facial expression for virtual human emotions based on facial skin color and texture may contribute towards the development of virtual reality and game environment of computer aided graphics animation systems.

  9. Development of a realistic human airway model.

    PubMed

    Lizal, Frantisek; Elcner, Jakub; Hopke, Philip K; Jedelsky, Jan; Jicha, Miroslav

    2012-03-01

    Numerous models of human lungs with various levels of idealization have been reported in the literature; consequently, results acquired using these models are difficult to compare to in vivo measurements. We have developed a set of model components based on realistic geometries, which permits the analysis of the effects of subsequent model simplification. A realistic digital upper airway geometry except for the lack of an oral cavity has been created which proved suitable both for computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations and for the fabrication of physical models. Subsequently, an oral cavity was added to the tracheobronchial geometry. The airway geometry including the oral cavity was adjusted to enable fabrication of a semi-realistic model. Five physical models were created based on these three digital geometries. Two optically transparent models, one with and one without the oral cavity, were constructed for flow velocity measurements, two realistic segmented models, one with and one without the oral cavity, were constructed for particle deposition measurements, and a semi-realistic model with glass cylindrical airways was developed for optical measurements of flow velocity and in situ particle size measurements. One-dimensional phase doppler anemometry measurements were made and compared to the CFD calculations for this model and good agreement was obtained. PMID:22558834

  10. Evaluation and correlation of sensory attributes and chemical compositions of emerging fresh produce: Microgreens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Microgreens are an emerging healthy food product with vivid colors and diverse flavors. However, information pertaining to their sensory attributes is scarce. In this study, six microgreen varieties were specifically selected from 25 varieties to represent five distinct flavor groups: 1) mustard (Di...