Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 225

Search results for: M. Abbas

15 Barriers of the Development and Implementation of Health Information Systems in Iran

Authors: Abbas Sheikhtaheri, Nasim Hashemi


Health information systems have great benefits for clinical and managerial processes of health care organizations. However, identifying and removing constraints and barriers of implementing and using health information systems before any implementation is essential. Physicians are one of the main users of health information systems, therefore, identifying the causes of their resistance and concerns about the barriers of the implementation of these systems is very important. So the purpose of this study was to determine the barriers of the development and implementation of health information systems in terms of the Iranian physicians’ perspectives. In this study conducted in 8 selected hospitals affiliated to Tehran and Iran Universities of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran in 2014, physicians (GPs, residents, interns, specialists) in these hospitals were surveyed. In order to collect data, a research made questionnaire was used (Cronbach’s α = 0.95). The instrument included 25 about organizational (9), personal (4), moral and legal (3) and technical barriers (9). Participants were asked to answer the questions using 5 point scale Likert (completely disagree=1 to completely agree=5). By using a simple random sampling method, 200 physicians (from 600) were invited to study that eventually 163 questionnaires were returned. We used mean score and t-test and ANOVA to analyze the data using SPSS software version 17. 52.1% of respondents were female. The mean age was 30.18 ± 7.29. The work experience years for most of them were between 1 to 5 years (80.4 percent). The most important barriers were organizational ones (3.4 ± 0.89), followed by ethical (3.18 ± 0.98), technical (3.06 ± 0.8) and personal (3.04 ± 1.2). Lack of easy access to a fast Internet (3.67±1.91) and the lack of exchanging information (3.61±1.2) were the most important technical barriers. Among organizational barriers, the lack of efficient planning for the development and implementation systems (3.56±1.32) and was the most important ones. Lack of awareness and knowledge of health care providers about the health information systems features (3.33±1.28) and the lack of physician participation in planning phase (3.27±1.2) as well as concerns regarding the security and confidentiality of health information (3.15 ± 1.31) were the most important personal and ethical barriers, respectively. Women (P = 0.02) and those with less experience (P = 0.002) were more concerned about personal barriers. GPs also were more concerned about technical barriers (P = 0.02). According to the study, technical and ethics barriers were considered as the most important barriers however, lack of awareness in target population is also considered as one of the main barriers. Ignoring issues such as personal and ethical barriers, even if the necessary infrastructure and technical requirements were provided, may result in failure. Therefore, along with the creating infrastructure and resolving organizational barriers, special attention to education and awareness of physicians and providing solution for ethics concerns are necessary.

Keywords: barriers, development health information systems, implementation, physicians

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14 Bandgap Engineering of CsMAPbI3-xBrx Quantum Dots for Intermediate Band Solar Cell

Authors: Deborah Eric, Abbas Ahmad Khan


Lead halide perovskites quantum dots have attracted immense scientific and technological interest for successful photovoltaic applications because of their remarkable optoelectronic properties. In this paper, we have simulated CsMAPbI3-xBrx based quantum dots to implement their use in intermediate band solar cells (IBSC). These types of materials exhibit optical and electrical properties distinct from their bulk counterparts due to quantum confinement. The conceptual framework provides a route to analyze the electronic properties of quantum dots. This layer of quantum dots optimizes the position and bandwidth of IB that lies in the forbidden region of the conventional bandgap. A three-dimensional MAPbI3 quantum dot (QD) with geometries including spherical, cubic, and conical has been embedded in the CsPbBr3 matrix. Bound energy wavefunction gives rise to miniband, which results in the formation of IB. If there is more than one miniband, then there is a possibility of having more than one IB. The optimization of QD size results in more IBs in the forbidden region. One band time-independent Schrödinger equation using the effective mass approximation with step potential barrier is solved to compute the electronic states. Envelope function approximation with BenDaniel-Duke boundary condition is used in combination with the Schrödinger equation for the calculation of eigen energies and Eigen energies are solved for the quasi-bound states using an eigenvalue study. The transfer matrix method is used to study the quantum tunneling of MAPbI3 QD through neighbor barriers of CsPbI3. Electronic states are computed using Schrödinger equation with effective mass approximation by considering quantum dot and wetting layer assembly. Results have shown the varying the quantum dot size affects the energy pinning of QD. Changes in the ground, first, second state energies have been observed. The QD is non-zero at the center and decays exponentially to zero at boundaries. Quasi-bound states are characterized by envelope functions. It has been observed that conical quantum dots have maximum ground state energy at a small radius. Increasing the wetting layer thickness exhibits energy signatures similar to bulk material for each QD size.

Keywords: perovskite, intermediate bandgap, quantum dots, miniband formation

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13 Investigation of Mangrove Area Effects on Hydrodynamic Conditions of a Tidal Dominant Strait Near the Strait of Hormuz

Authors: Maryam Hajibaba, Mohsen Soltanpour, Mehrnoosh Abbasian, S. Abbas Haghshenas


This paper aims to evaluate the main role of mangroves forests on the unique hydrodynamic characteristics of the Khuran Strait (KS) in the Persian Gulf. Investigation of hydrodynamic conditions of KS is vital to predict and estimate sedimentation and erosion all over the protected areas north of Qeshm Island. KS (or Tang-e-Khuran) is located between Qeshm Island and the Iranian mother land and has a minimum width of approximately two kilometers. Hydrodynamics of the strait is dominated by strong tidal currents of up to 2 m/s. The bathymetry of the area is dynamic and complicated as 1) strong currents do exist in the area which lead to seemingly sand dune movements in the middle and southern parts of the strait, and 2) existence a vast area with mangrove coverage next to the narrowest part of the strait. This is why ordinary modeling schemes with normal mesh resolutions are not capable for high accuracy estimations of current fields in the KS. A comprehensive set of measurements were carried out with several components, to investigate the hydrodynamics and morpho-dynamics of the study area, including 1) vertical current profiling at six stations, 2) directional wave measurements at four stations, 3) water level measurements at six stations, 4) wind measurements at one station, and 5) sediment grab sampling at 100 locations. Additionally, a set of periodic hydrographic surveys was included in the program. The numerical simulation was carried out by using Delft3D – Flow Module. Model calibration was done by comparing water levels and depth averaged velocity of currents against available observational data. The results clearly indicate that observed data and simulations only fit together if a realistic perspective of the mangrove area is well captured by the model bathymetry data. Generating unstructured grid by using RGFGRID and QUICKIN, the flow model was driven with water level time-series at open boundaries. Adopting the available field data, the key role of mangrove area on the hydrodynamics of the study area can be studied. The results show that including the accurate geometry of the mangrove area and consideration of its sponge-like behavior are the key aspects through which a realistic current field can be simulated in the KS.

Keywords: Khuran Strait, Persian Gulf, tide, current, Delft3D

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12 Optimization of Mechanical Properties of Alginate Hydrogel for 3D Bio-Printing Self-Standing Scaffold Architecture for Tissue Engineering Applications

Authors: Ibtisam A. Abbas Al-Darkazly


In this study, the mechanical properties of alginate hydrogel material for self-standing 3D scaffold architecture with proper shape fidelity are investigated. In-lab built 3D bio-printer extrusion-based technology is utilized to fabricate 3D alginate scaffold constructs. The pressure, needle speed and stage speed are varied using a computer-controlled system. The experimental result indicates that the concentration of alginate solution, calcium chloride (CaCl2) cross-linking concentration and cross-linking ratios lead to the formation of alginate hydrogel with various gelation states. Besides, the gelling conditions, such as cross-linking reaction time and temperature also have a significant effect on the mechanical properties of alginate hydrogel. Various experimental tests such as the material gelation, the material spreading and the printability test for filament collapse as well as the swelling test were conducted to evaluate the fabricated 3D scaffold constructs. The result indicates that the fabricated 3D scaffold from composition of 3.5% wt alginate solution, that is prepared in DI water and 1% wt CaCl2 solution with cross-linking ratios of 7:3 show good printability and sustain good shape fidelity for more than 20 days, compared to alginate hydrogel that is prepared in a phosphate buffered saline (PBS). The fabricated self-standing 3D scaffold constructs measured 30 mm × 30 mm and consisted of 4 layers (n = 4) show good pore geometry and clear grid structure after printing. In addition, the percentage change of swelling degree exhibits high swelling capability with respect to time. The swelling test shows that the geometry of 3D alginate-scaffold construct and of the macro-pore are rarely changed, which indicates the capability of holding the shape fidelity during the incubation period. This study demonstrated that the mechanical and physical properties of alginate hydrogel could be tuned for a 3D bio-printing extrusion-based system to fabricate self-standing 3D scaffold soft structures. This 3D bioengineered scaffold provides a natural microenvironment present in the extracellular matrix of the tissue, which could be seeded with the biological cells to generate the desired 3D live tissue model for in vitro and in vivo tissue engineering applications.

Keywords: biomaterial, calcium chloride, 3D bio-printing, extrusion, scaffold, sodium alginate, tissue engineering

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11 Application of the Material Point Method as a New Fast Simulation Technique for Textile Composites Forming and Material Handling

Authors: Amir Nazemi, Milad Ramezankhani, Marian Kӧrber, Abbas S. Milani


The excellent strength to weight ratio of woven fabric composites, along with their high formability, is one of the primary design parameters defining their increased use in modern manufacturing processes, including those in aerospace and automotive. However, for emerging automated preform processes under the smart manufacturing paradigm, complex geometries of finished components continue to bring several challenges to the designers to cope with manufacturing defects on site. Wrinklinge. g. is a common defectoccurring during the forming process and handling of semi-finished textile composites. One of the main reasons for this defect is the weak bending stiffness of fibers in unconsolidated state, causing excessive relative motion between them. Further challenges are represented by the automated handling of large-area fiber blanks with specialized gripper systems. For fabric composites forming simulations, the finite element (FE)method is a longstanding tool usedfor prediction and mitigation of manufacturing defects. Such simulations are predominately meant, not only to predict the onset, growth, and shape of wrinkles but also to determine the best processing condition that can yield optimized positioning of the fibers upon forming (or robot handling in the automated processes case). However, the need for use of small-time steps via explicit FE codes, facing numerical instabilities, as well as large computational time, are among notable drawbacks of the current FEtools, hindering their extensive use as fast and yet efficient digital twins in industry. This paper presents a novel woven fabric simulation technique through the application of the material point method (MPM), which enables the use of much larger time steps, facing less numerical instabilities, hence the ability to run significantly faster and efficient simulationsfor fabric materials handling and forming processes. Therefore, this method has the ability to enhance the development of automated fiber handling and preform processes by calculating the physical interactions with the MPM fiber models and rigid tool components. This enables the designers to virtually develop, test, and optimize their processes based on either algorithmicor Machine Learning applications. As a preliminary case study, forming of a hemispherical plain weave is shown, and the results are compared to theFE simulations, as well as experiments.

Keywords: material point method, woven fabric composites, forming, material handling

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10 Telemedicine Services in Ophthalmology: A Review of Studies

Authors: Nasim Hashemi, Abbas Sheikhtaheri


Telemedicine is the use of telecommunication and information technologies to provide health care services that would often not be consistently available in distant rural communities to people at these remote areas. Teleophthalmology is a branch of telemedicine that delivers eye care through digital medical equipment and telecommunications technology. Thus, teleophthalmology can overcome geographical barriers and improve quality, access, and affordability of eye health care services. Since teleophthalmology has been widespread applied in recent years, the aim of this study was to determine the different applications of teleophthalmology in the world. To this end, three bibliographic databases (Medline, ScienceDirect, Scopus) were comprehensively searched with these keywords: eye care, eye health care, primary eye care, diagnosis, detection, and screening of different eye diseases in conjunction with telemedicine, telehealth, teleophthalmology, e-services, and information technology. All types of papers were included in the study with no time restriction. We conducted the search strategies until 2015. Finally 70 articles were surveyed. We classified the results based on the’type of eye problems covered’ and ‘the type of telemedicine services’. Based on the review, from the ‘perspective of health care levels’, there are three level for eye health care as primary, secondary and tertiary eye care. From the ‘perspective of eye care services’, the main application of teleophthalmology in primary eye care was related to the diagnosis of different eye diseases such as diabetic retinopathy, macular edema, strabismus and aged related macular degeneration. The main application of teleophthalmology in secondary and tertiary eye care was related to the screening of eye problems i.e. diabetic retinopathy, astigmatism, glaucoma screening. Teleconsultation between health care providers and ophthalmologists and also education and training sessions for patients were other types of teleophthalmology in world. Real time, store–forward and hybrid methods were the main forms of the communication from the perspective of ‘teleophthalmology mode’ which is used based on IT infrastructure between sending and receiving centers. In aspect of specialists, early detection of serious aged-related ophthalmic disease in population, screening of eye disease processes, consultation in an emergency cases and comprehensive eye examination were the most important benefits of teleophthalmology. Cost-effectiveness of teleophthalmology projects resulted from reducing transportation and accommodation cost, access to affordable eye care services and receiving specialist opinions were also the main advantages of teleophthalmology for patients. Teleophthalmology brings valuable secondary and tertiary care to remote areas. So, applying teleophthalmology for detection, treatment and screening purposes and expanding its use in new applications such as eye surgery will be a key tool to promote public health and integrating eye care to primary health care.

Keywords: applications, telehealth, telemedicine, teleophthalmology

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9 The Effects of Stoke's Drag, Electrostatic Force and Charge on Penetration of Nanoparticles through N95 Respirators

Authors: Jacob Schwartz, Maxim Durach, Aniruddha Mitra, Abbas Rashidi, Glen Sage, Atin Adhikari


NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) approved N95 respirators are commonly used by workers in construction sites where there is a large amount of dust being produced from sawing, grinding, blasting, welding, etc., both electrostatically charged and not. A significant portion of airborne particles in construction sites could be nanoparticles created beside coarse particles. The penetration of the particles through the masks may differ depending on the size and charge of the individual particle. In field experiments relevant to this current study, we found that nanoparticles of medium size ranges are penetrating more frequently than nanoparticles of smaller and larger sizes. For example, penetration percentages of nanoparticles of 11.5 – 27.4 nm into a sealed N95 respirator on a manikin head ranged from 0.59 to 6.59%, whereas nanoparticles of 36.5 – 86.6 nm ranged from 7.34 to 16.04%. The possible causes behind this increased penetration of mid-size nanoparticles through mask filters are not yet explored. The objective of this study is to identify causes behind this unusual behavior of mid-size nanoparticles. We have considered such physical factors as Boltzmann distribution of the particles in thermal equilibrium with the air, kinetic energy of the particles at impact on the mask, Stoke’s drag force, and electrostatic forces in the mask stopping the particles. When the particles collide with the mask, only the particles that have enough kinetic energy to overcome the energy loss due to the electrostatic forces and the Stokes’ drag in the mask can pass through the mask. To understand this process, the following assumptions were made: (1) the effect of Stoke’s drag depends on the particles’ velocity at entry into the mask; (2) the electrostatic force is proportional to the charge on the particles, which in turn is proportional to the surface area of the particles; (3) the general dependence on electrostatic charge and thickness means that for stronger electrostatic resistance in the masks and thicker the masks’ fiber layers the penetration of particles is reduced, which is a sensible conclusion. In sampling situations where one mask was soaked in alcohol eliminating electrostatic interaction the penetration was much larger in the mid-range than the same mask with electrostatic interaction. The smaller nanoparticles showed almost zero penetration most likely because of the small kinetic energy, while the larger sized nanoparticles showed almost negligible penetration most likely due to the interaction of the particle with its own drag force. If there is no electrostatic force the fraction for larger particles grows. But if the electrostatic force is added the fraction for larger particles goes down, so diminished penetration for larger particles should be due to increased electrostatic repulsion, may be due to increased surface area and therefore larger charge on average. We have also explored the effect of ambient temperature on nanoparticle penetrations and determined that the dependence of the penetration of particles on the temperature is weak in the range of temperatures in the measurements 37-42°C, since the factor changes in the range from 3.17 10-3K-1 to 3.22 10-3K-1.

Keywords: respiratory protection, industrial hygiene, aerosol, electrostatic force

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8 Resistance Training and Ginger Consumption on Cytokines Levels

Authors: Alireza Barari, Ahmad Abdi


Regular body trainings cause adaption in various system in body. One of the important effect of body training is its effect on immune system. It seems that cytokines usually release after long period exercises or some exercises which cause skeletal muscular damages. If some of the cytokines which cause responses such as inflammation of cells in skeletal muscles, with manipulating of training program, it can be avoided or limited from those exercises which induct cytokines release. Ginger plant is a kind of medicinal plants which is known as a anti inflammation plant. This plant is as most precedence medicinal plants in medicine science especially in inflammation cure. The aim of the present study was the effect of selected resistance training and consumption of ginger extract on IL-1α and TNFα untrained young women. The population includes young women interested in participating in the study with the average of 30±2 years old from Abbas Abad city among which 32 participants were chosen randomly and divided into 4 four groups, resistance training (R), resistance training and ginger consumption(RG), Ginger consumption(G)and Control group(C). The training groups performed circuit resistance training at the intensity of 65-75% one repeat maximum, 3 days a week for 6 weeks. Besides resistance training, subjects were given either ginseng (5 mg/kg per day) or placebo. Prior to and 48 hours after interventions body composition was measured and blood samples were taken in order to assess serum levels of IL-1α and TNFα. Plasma levels of cytokines were measured with commercially available ELISA Kits.IL-1α kit and TNFα kit were used in this research. To demonstrate the effectiveness of the independent variable and the comparison between groups, t-test and ANOVA were used. To determine differences between the groups, the Scheffe test was used that showed significant changes in any of the variables. we observed that circuit resistance training in R and RG groups can significant decreased in weight and body mass index in untrained females (p<0.05). The results showed a significant decreased in the mean level of IL-1α levels before and after the training period in G group (p=0.046) and RG group (p=0.022). Comparison between groups also showed there was significant difference between groups R-RG and RG-C. Intergroup comparison results showed that the mean levels of TNFα before and after the training in group G (p=0.044) and RG (p=0.037), significantly decreased. Comparison between groups also showed there was significant difference between groups R–RG , R-G ,RG-C and G-C. The research shows that circuit resistance training with reducing overload method results in systemic inflammation had significant effect on IL-1α levels and TNFα. Of course, Ginger can counteract the negative effects of resistance training exercise on immune function and stability of the mast cell membrane. Considerable evidence supported the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger for several constituents, especially gingerols, shogaols, paradols, and zingerones, through decreased cytokine gene TNF α and IL-1Α expression and inhibition of cyclooxygenase 1 and 2. These established biological actions suggest that ingested ginger could block the increase in IL-1α.

Keywords: resistance training, ginger, IL-1α , TNFα

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7 Nanoparticle Exposure Levels in Indoor and Outdoor Demolition Sites

Authors: Aniruddha Mitra, Abbas Rashidi, Shane Lewis, Jefferson Doehling, Alexis Pawlak, Jacob Schwartz, Imaobong Ekpo, Atin Adhikari


Working or living close to demolition sites can increase risks of dust-related health problems. Demolition of concrete buildings may produce crystalline silica dust, which can be associated with a broad range of respiratory diseases including silicosis and lung cancers. Previous studies demonstrated significant associations between demolition dust exposure and increase in the incidence of mesothelioma or asbestos cancer. Dust is a generic term used for minute solid particles of typically <500 µm in diameter. Dust particles in demolition sites vary in a wide range of sizes. Larger particles tend to settle down from the air. On the other hand, the smaller and lighter solid particles remain dispersed in the air for a long period and pose sustained exposure risks. Submicron ultrafine particles and nanoparticles are respirable deeper into our alveoli beyond our body’s natural respiratory cleaning mechanisms such as cilia and mucous membranes and are likely to be retained in the lower airways. To our knowledge, how various demolition tasks release nanoparticles are largely unknown and previous studies mostly focused on course dust, PM2.5, and PM10. General belief is that the dust generated during demolition tasks are mostly large particles formed through crushing, grinding, or sawing of various concrete and wooden structures. Therefore, little consideration has been given to the generated submicron ultrafine and nanoparticles and their exposure levels. These data are, however, critically important because recent laboratory studies have demonstrated cytotoxicity of nanoparticles on lung epithelial cells. The above-described knowledge gaps were addressed in this study by a novel newly developed nanoparticle monitor, which was used for nanoparticle monitoring at two adjacent indoor and outdoor building demolition sites in southern Georgia. Nanoparticle levels were measured (n = 10) by TSI NanoScan SMPS Model 3910 at four different distances (5, 10, 15, and 30 m) from the work location as well as in control sites. Temperature and relative humidity levels were recorded. Indoor demolition works included acetylene torch, masonry drilling, ceiling panel removal, and other miscellaneous tasks. Whereas, outdoor demolition works included acetylene torch and skid-steer loader use to remove a HVAC system. Concentration ranges of nanoparticles of 13 particle sizes at the indoor demolition site were: 11.5 nm: 63 – 1054/cm³; 15.4 nm: 170 – 1690/cm³; 20.5 nm: 321 – 730/cm³; 27.4 nm: 740 – 3255/cm³; 36.5 nm: 1,220 – 17,828/cm³; 48.7 nm: 1,993 – 40,465/cm³; 64.9 nm: 2,848 – 58,910/cm³; 86.6 nm: 3,722 – 62,040/cm³; 115.5 nm: 3,732 – 46,786/cm³; 154 nm: 3,022 – 21,506/cm³; 205.4 nm: 12 – 15,482/cm³; 273.8 nm: Keywords: demolition dust, industrial hygiene, aerosol, occupational exposure

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6 Cardiac Rehabilitation Program and Health-Related Quality of Life; A Randomized Control Trial

Authors: Zia Ul Haq, Saleem Muhammad, Naeem Ullah, Abbas Shah, Abdullah Shah


Pakistan being the developing country is facing double burden of communicable and non-communicable disease. The aspect of secondary prevention of ischemic heart disease in developing countries is the dire need for public health specialists, clinicians and policy makers. There is some evidence that psychotherapeutic measures, including psychotherapy, recreation, exercise and stress management training have positive impact on secondary prevention of cardiovascular diseases but there are some contradictory findings as well. Cardiac rehabilitation program (CRP) has not yet fully implemented in Pakistan. Psychological, physical and specific health-related quality of life (HRQoL) outcomes needs assessment with respect to its practicality, effectiveness, and success. Objectives: To determine the effect of cardiac rehabilitation program (CRP) on the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) measures of post MI patients compared to the usual care. Hypothesis: Post MI patients who receive the interventions (CRP) will have better HRQoL as compared to those who receive the usual cares. Methods: The randomized control trial was conducted at a Cardiac Rehabilitation Unit of Lady Reading Hospital (LRH), Peshawar. LRH is the biggest hospital of the Province Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). A total 206 participants who had recent first myocardial infarction were inducted in the study. Participants were randomly allocated into two group i.e. usual care group (UCG) and cardiac rehabilitation group (CRG) by permuted-block randomization (PBR) method. CRP was conducted in CRG in two phases. Three HRQoL outcomes i.e. general health questionnaire (GHQ), self-rated health (SRH) and MacNew quality of life after myocardial infarction (MacNew QLMI) were assessed at baseline and follow-up visits among both groups. Data were entered and analyzed by appropriate statistical test in STATA version 12. Results: A total of 195 participants were assessed at the follow-up period due to lost-to-follow-up. The mean age of the participants was 53.66 + 8.3 years. Males were dominant in both groups i.e. 150 (76.92%). Regarding educational status, majority of the participants were illiterate in both groups i.e. 128 (65.64%). Surprisingly, there were 139 (71.28%) who were non-smoker on the whole. The comorbid status was positive in 120 (61.54%) among all the patients. The SRH at follow-up among UCG and CRG was 4.06 (95% CI: 3.93, 4.19) and 2.36 (95% CI: 2.2, 2.52) respectively (p<0.001). GHQ at the follow-up of UCG and CRG was 20.91 (95% CI: 18.83, 21.97) and 7.43 (95% CI: 6.59, 8.27) respectively (p<0.001). The MacNew QLMI at follow-up of UCG and CRG was 3.82 (95% CI: 3.7, 3.94) and 5.62 (95% CI: 5.5, 5.74) respectively (p<0.001). All the HRQoL measures showed strongly significant improvement in the CRG at follow-up period. Conclusion: HRQOL improved in post MI patients after comprehensive CRP. Education of the patients and their supervision is needed when they are involved in their rehabilitation activities. It is concluded that establishing CRP in cardiac units, recruiting post-discharged MI patients and offering them CRP does not impose high costs and can result in significant improvement in HRQoL measures. Trial registration no: ACTRN12617000832370

Keywords: cardiovascular diseases, cardiac rehabilitation, health-related quality of life, HRQoL, myocardial infarction, quality of life, QoL, rehabilitation, randomized control trial

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5 Implementation of a Multidisciplinary Weekly Safety Briefing in a Tertiary Paediatric Cardiothoracic Transplant Unit

Authors: Lauren Dhugga, Meena Parameswaran, David Blundell, Abbas Khushnood


Context: A multidisciplinary weekly safety briefing was implemented at the Paediatric Cardiothoracic Unit at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. It is a tertiary referral centre with a quarternary cardiac paediatric intensive care unit and provides complexed care including heart and lung transplants, mechanical support and advanced heart failure assessment. Aim: The aim of this briefing is to provide a structured platform of communication, in an effort to improve efficiency, safety, and patient care. Problem: The paediatric cardiothoracic unit is made up of a vast multidisciplinary team including doctors, intensivists, anaesthetists, surgeons, specialist nurses, echocardiogram technicians, physiotherapists, psychologists, dentists, and dietitians. It provides care for children with congenital and acquired cardiac disease and is one of only two units in the UK to offer paediatric heart transplant. The complexity of cases means that there can be many teams involved in providing care to each patient, and frequent movement of children between ward, high dependency, and intensive care areas. Currently, there is no structured forum for communicating important information across the department, for example, staffing shortages, prescribing errors and significant events. Strategy: An initial survey questioning the need for better communication found 90% of respondents agreed that they could think of an incident that had occurred due to ineffective communication, and 85% felt that incident could have been avoided had there been a better form of communication. Lastly, 80% of respondents felt that a weekly 60 second safety briefing would be beneficial to improve communication within our multidisciplinary team. Based on those promising results, a weekly 60 second safety briefing was implemented to be conducted on a Monday morning. The safety briefing covered four key areas (SAFE): staffing, awareness, fix and events. This was to highlight any staffing gaps, any incident reports to be learned from, any issues that required fixing and any events including teachings for the week ahead. The teams were encouraged to email suggestions or issues to be raised for the week or to approach in person with information to add. The safety briefing was implemented using change theory. Effect: The safety briefing has been trialled over 6 weeks and has received a good buy in from staff across specialties. The aim is to embed this safety briefing into a weekly meeting using the PDSA cycle. There will be a second survey in one month to assess the efficacy of the safety briefing and to continue to improve the delivery of information. The project will be presented at the next clinical governance briefing to attract wider feedback and input from across the trust. Lessons: The briefing displays promise as a tool to improve vigilance and communication in a busy multi-disciplinary unit. We have learned about how to implement quality improvement and about the culture of our hospital - how hierarchy influences change. We demonstrate how to implement change through a grassroots process, using a junior led briefing to improve the efficiency, safety, and communication in the workplace.

Keywords: briefing, communication, safety, team

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4 Wood Dust and Nanoparticle Exposure among Workers during a New Building Construction

Authors: Atin Adhikari, Aniruddha Mitra, Abbas Rashidi, Imaobong Ekpo, Jefferson Doehling, Alexis Pawlak, Shane Lewis, Jacob Schwartz


Building constructions in the US involve numerous wooden structures. Woods are routinely used in walls, framing floors, framing stairs, and making of landings in building constructions. Cross-laminated timbers are currently being used as construction materials for tall buildings. Numerous workers are involved in these timber based constructions, and wood dust is one of the most common occupational exposures for them. Wood dust is a complex substance composed of cellulose, polyoses and other substances. According to US OSHA, exposure to wood dust is associated with a variety of adverse health effects among workers, including dermatitis, allergic respiratory effects, mucosal and nonallergic respiratory effects, and cancers. The amount and size of particles released as wood dust differ according to the operations performed on woods. For example, shattering of wood during sanding operations produces finer particles than does chipping in sawing and milling industries. To our knowledge, how shattering, cutting and sanding of woods and wood slabs during new building construction release fine particles and nanoparticles are largely unknown. General belief is that the dust generated during timber cutting and sanding tasks are mostly large particles. Consequently, little attention has been given to the generated submicron ultrafine and nanoparticles and their exposure levels. These data are, however, critically important because recent laboratory studies have demonstrated cytotoxicity of nanoparticles on lung epithelial cells. The above-described knowledge gaps were addressed in this study by a novel newly developed nanoparticle monitor and conventional particle counters. This study was conducted in a large new building construction site in southern Georgia primarily during the framing of wooden side walls, inner partition walls, and landings. Exposure levels of nanoparticles (n = 10) were measured by a newly developed nanoparticle counter (TSI NanoScan SMPS Model 3910) at four different distances (5, 10, 15, and 30 m) from the work location. Other airborne particles (number of particles/m3) including PM2.5 and PM10 were monitored using a 6-channel (0.3, 0.5, 1.0, 2.5, 5.0 and 10 µm) particle counter at 15 m, 30 m, and 75 m distances at both upwind and downwind directions. Mass concentration of PM2.5 and PM10 (µg/m³) were measured by using a DustTrak Aerosol Monitor. Temperature and relative humidity levels were recorded. Wind velocity was measured by a hot wire anemometer. Concentration ranges of nanoparticles of 13 particle sizes were: 11.5 nm: 221 – 816/cm³; 15.4 nm: 696 – 1735/cm³; 20.5 nm: 879 – 1957/cm³; 27.4 nm: 1164 – 2903/cm³; 36.5 nm: 1138 – 2640/cm³; 48.7 nm: 938 – 1650/cm³; 64.9 nm: 759 – 1284/cm³; 86.6 nm: 705 – 1019/cm³; 115.5 nm: 494 – 1031/cm³; 154 nm: 417 – 806/cm³; 205.4 nm: 240 – 471/cm³; 273.8 nm: 45 – 92/cm³; and 365.2 nm: Keywords: wood dust, industrial hygiene, aerosol, occupational exposure

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3 Correlation of Hyperlipidemia with Platelet Parameters in Blood Donors

Authors: S. Nishat Fatima Rizvi, Tulika Chandra, Abbas Ali Mahdi, Devisha Agarwal


Introduction: Blood components are an unexplored area prone to numerous discoveries which influence patient’s care. Experiments at different levels will further change the present concept of blood banking. Hyperlipidemia is a condition of elevated plasma level of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) as well as decreased plasma level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Studies show that platelets play a vital role in the progression of atherosclerosis and thrombosis, a major cause of death worldwide. They are activated by many triggers like elevated LDL in the blood resulting in aggregation and formation of plaques. Hyperlipidemic platelets are frequently transfused to patients with various disorders. Screening the random donor platelets for hyperlipidemia and correlating the condition with other donor criteria such as lipid rich diet, oral contraceptive pills intake, weight, alcohol intake, smoking, sedentary lifestyle, family history of heart diseases will lead to further deciding the exclusion criteria for donor selection. This will help in making the patients safe as well as the donor deferral criteria more stringent to improve the quality of blood supply. Technical evaluation and assessment will enable blood bankers to supply safe blood and improve the guidelines for blood safety. Thus, we try to study the correlation between hyperlipidemic platelets with platelets parameters, weight, and specific history of the donors. Methodology: This case control study included 100 blood samples of Blood donors, out of 100 only 30 samples were found to be hyperlipidemic and were included as cases, while rest were taken as controls. Lipid Profile were measured by fully automated analyzer (TRIGL:triglycerides),(LDL-C:LDL –Cholesterol plus 2nd generation),CHOL 2: Cholesterol Gen 2), HDL C 3: HDL-Cholesterol plus 3rdgeneration)-(Cobas C311-Roche Diagnostic).And Platelets parameters were analyzed by the Sysmex KX21 automated hematology analyzer. Results: A significant correlation was found amongst hyperlipidemic level in single time donor. In which 80% donors have history of heart disease, 66.66% donors have sedentary life style, 83.3% donors were smokers, 50% donors were alcoholic, and 63.33% donors had taken lipid rich diet. Active physical activity was found amongst 40% donors. We divided donors sample in two groups based on their body weight. In group 1, hyperlipidemic samples: Platelet Parameters were 75% in normal 25% abnormal in >70Kg weight while in 50-70Kg weight 90% were normal 10% were abnormal. In-group 2, Non Hyperlipidemic samples: platelet Parameters were 95% normal and 5% abnormal in >70Kg weight, while in 50-70Kg Weight, 66.66% normal and 33.33% abnormal. Conclusion: The findings indicate that Hyperlipidemic status of donors may affect the platelet parameters and can be distinguished on history by their weight, Smoking, Alcoholic intake, Sedentary lifestyle, Active physical activity, Lipid rich diet, Oral contraceptive pills intake, and Family history of heart disease. However further studies on a large sample size will affirm this finding.

Keywords: blood donors, hyperlipidemia, platelet, weight

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2 Flourishing in Marriage among Arab Couples in Israel: The Impact of Capitalization Support and Accommodation on Positive and Negative Affect

Authors: Niveen Hassan-Abbas, Tammie Ronen-Rosenbaum


Background and purpose: 'Flourishing in marriage' is a concept refers to married individuals’ high positivity ratio regarding their marriage, namely greater reported positive than negative emotions. The study proposes a different approach to marriage which emphasizes the place of the individual himself as largely responsible for his personal flourishing within marriage. Accordingly, the individual's desire to preserve and strengthen his marriage largely determines the marital behavior in a way that will contribute to his marriage success (Actor Effect), regardless the contribution of his or her partner to his marriage success (Partner Effect). Another assumption was that flourishing in marriage could be achieved by two separate processes, where capitalization support increases the positive marriage's evaluations and accommodation decreases the negative one. A theoretical model was constructed, whereby individuals who were committed to their marriage were hypothesized as employing self-control skills by way of two dynamic processes. First, individual’s higher degree of 'capitalization supportive responses' - supportive responses to the partner's sharing of positive personal experiences - was hypothesized as increasing one’s positive evaluations of marriage and thereby one’s positivity ratio. Second, individual’s higher degree of 'accommodation' responses - the ability during conflict situations to control the impulse to respond destructively and instead to respond constructively - was hypothesized as decreasing one’s negative evaluations of marriage and thereby increasing one’s positivity ratio. Methods: Participants were 156 heterosexual Arab couples from different regions of Israel. The mean period of marriage was 10.19 (SD=7.83), ages were 31.53 years for women (SD=8.12) and 36.80 years for men (SD=8.07). Years of education were 13.87 for women (SD=2.84) and 13.23 years for men (SD=3.45). Each participant completed seven questionnaires: socio-demographic, self-control skills, commitment, capitalization support, accommodation, marital quality, positive and negative affect. Using statistical analyses adapted to dyadic research design, firstly descriptive statistics were calculated and preliminary tests were performed. Next, dyadic model based on the Actor-Partner Interdependence Model (APIM) were tested using structural equation modeling (SEM). Results: The assumption according to which flourishing in marriage can be achieved by two processes was confirmed. All of the Actor Effect hypotheses were confirmed. Participants with higher self-control used more capitalization support and accommodation responses. Among husbands, unlike wives, these correlations were stronger when the individual's commitment level was higher. More capitalization supportive responses were found to increase positive evaluations of marriage, and greater spousal accommodation was found to decrease negative evaluations of marriage. High positive evaluations and low negative evaluations were found to increase positivity ratio. Not according to expectation, four partner effect paths were found significant. Conclusions and Implications: The present findings coincide with the positive psychology approach that emphasizes human strengths. The uniqueness of this study is its proposal that individuals are largely responsible for their personal flourishing in marriage. This study demonstrated that marital flourishing can be achieved by two processes, where capitalization increases the positive and accommodation decreases the negative. Practical implications include the need to construct interventions that enhance self-control skills for employment of capitalizing responsiveness and accommodation processes.

Keywords: accommodation, capitalization support, commitment, flourishing in marriage, positivity ratio, self-control skills

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1 Dietetics Practice in the Scope of Disease Prevention in Community Settings: A School-Based Obesity Prevention Program

Authors: Elham Abbas Aljaaly, Nahlaa Abdulwahab Khalifa


The active method of disease prevention is seen as the most affordable and sustainable action to deal with risks of non-communicable diseases such as obesity. This eight-week project aimed to pilot the feasibility and acceptability of a school-based programme, which is proposed to prevent and modify overweight status and possible related risk factors among student girls 'at the intermediate level' in Jeddah city. The programme was conducted through comprehensible approach targeting physical environment and school policies (nutritional/exercise/behavioural approach). The programme was designed to cultivate the personal and environmental awareness in schools for girls. This was applied by promoting healthy eating and physical activity through policies, physical education, healthier options for school canteens, and the creation of school health teams. The prevention programme was applied on 68 students (who agreed to participate) from grades 7th, 8th and 9th. A pre and post assessment questionnaire was employed on 66 students. The questionnaires were designed to obtain information on students' knowledge about health, nutrition and physical activity. Survey questions included information about nutrients, food consumption patterns, food intake and lifestyle. Physical education included training sessions for new opportunities for physical activities to be performed during school or after school hours. A running competition 'to enhance students’ performance for physical activities' was also conducted during the school visit. A visit to the school canteen was conducted to check, observe, record and assess all available food/beverage items and meals. The assessment method was a subjective method for the type of food/beverages if high in saturated fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) or non-HFSS. The school canteen administrators were encouraged to provide healthy food/beverage items and a sample healthy canteen was provided for implementation. Two healthy options were introduced to the school canteen. A follow up for students’ preferences for the introduced options and the purchasing power were assessed. Thirty-eight percent of young girls (n=26) were not participating in any form of physical activities inside or outside school. Skipping breakfast was stated by 42% (n=28) of students with no daily consumption (19%, n=13) for fruit/vegetables. Significant changes were noticed in students’ (n=66) overall responses to the pre and post questions (P value=.001). All students had participated in the conducted running competition sessions and reported satisfaction and enjoyment about the sessions. No absence was reported by the research team for attending physical education and activity sessions throughout the delivered programme. The purchasing power of the introduced healthy options of 'Salad and oatmeal' was increased to 18% in 8 weeks at the school canteen, and slightly affected the purchase for other less healthy options. The piloted programme indorsed better health and nutrition knowledge, healthy eating and lifestyle attitude, which could help young girls to obtain sustainable changes. It is expected that the outcomes of the programme will be a cornerstone for the futuristic national study that will assist policy makers and participants to build a knowledgeable health promotion scenario and make sure that school students have access to healthy foods, physical exercise and healthy lifestyle.

Keywords: adolescents, diet, exercise, behaviours, overweight/obesity, prevention-intervention programme, Saudi Arabia, schoolgirls

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