Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 197

Search results for: intervention

197 The Effectiveness of Cognitive Behavioural Intervention in Alleviating Social Avoidance for Blind Students

Authors: Mohamed M. Elsherbiny

Abstract:

Social Avoidance is one of the most important problems that face a good number of disabled students. It results from the negative attitudes of non-disabled students, teachers and others. Some of the past research has shown that non-disabled individuals hold negative attitudes toward persons with disabilities. The present study aims to alleviate Social Avoidance by applying the Cognitive Behavioral Intervention. 24 Blind students aged 19–24 (university students) were randomly chosen we compared an experimental group (consisted of 12 students) who went through the intervention program, with a control group (12 students also) who did not go through such intervention. We used the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale (SADS) to assess social anxiety and distress behavior. The author used many techniques of cognitive behavioral intervention such as modeling, cognitive restructuring, extension, contingency contracts, selfmonitoring, assertiveness training, role play, encouragement and others. Statistically, T-test was employed to test the research hypothesis. Result showed that there is a significance difference between the experimental group and the control group after the intervention and also at the follow up stages of the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale. Also for the experimental group, there is a significance difference before the intervention and the follow up stages for the scale. Results showed that, there is a decrease in social avoidance. Accordingly, cognitive behavioral intervention program was successful in decreasing social avoidance for blind students.

Keywords: Social avoidance, cognitive behavioral intervention, blind disability, disability.

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196 Sonic Therapeutic Intervention for Preventing Financial Fraud: A Phenomenological Study

Authors: Vasudev Das

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The specific problem is that private and public organizational leaders often do not understand the importance of sonic therapeutic intervention in preventing financial fraud. The study aimed to explore sonic therapeutic intervention practitioners' lived experiences regarding the value of sonic therapeutic intervention in preventing financial fraud. The data collection methods were semi-structured interviews of purposeful samples and documentary reviews, which were analyzed thematically. Four themes emerged from the analysis of interview transcription data: Sonic therapeutic intervention enabled self-control, pro-spiritual values, consequentiality mindset, and post-conventional consciousness. The itemized four themes helped non-engagement in financial fraud. Implications for positive social change include enhanced financial fraud management, more significant financial leadership, and result-oriented decision-taking in the financial market. Also, the study results can improve the increased de-escalation of anxiety/stress associated with defrauding.

Keywords: consciousness, consequentiality, rehabilitation, reintegration

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195 Effectiveness of a Malaysian Workplace Intervention Study on Physical Activity Levels

Authors: M. Z. Bin Mohd Ghazali, N. C. Wilson, A. F. Bin Ahmad Fuad, M. A. H. B. Musa, M. U. Mohamad Sani, F. Zulkifli, M. S. Zainal Abidin

Abstract:

Physical activity levels are low in Malaysia and this study was undertaken to determine if a four week work-based intervention program would be effective in changing physical activity levels. The study was conducted in a Malaysian Government Department and had three stages: baseline data collection, four-week intervention and two-month post intervention data collection. During the intervention and two-month post intervention phases, physical activity levels (determined by a pedometer) and basic health profiles (BMI, abdominal obesity, blood pressure) were measured. Staff (58 males, 47 females) with an average age of 33 years completed baseline data collection. Pedometer steps averaged 7,102 steps/day at baseline, although male step counts were significantly higher than females (7,861 vs. 6114). Health profiles were poor: over 50% were overweight/obese (males 66%, females 40%); hypertension (males 23%, females 6%); excess waist circumference (males 52%, females 17%). While 86 staff participated in the intervention, only 49 regularly reported their steps. There was a significant increase (17%) in average daily steps from 8,965 (week 1) to 10,436 (week 4). Unfortunately, participation in the intervention program was avoided by the less healthy staff. Two months after the intervention there was no significant difference in average steps/day, despite the fact that 89% of staff reporting they planned to make long-term changes to their lifestyle. An unexpected average increase of 2kg in body weight occurred in participants, although this was less than the 5.6kg in non-participants. A number of recommendations are made for future interventions, including the conclusion that pedometers were a useful tool and popular with participants.

Keywords: Pedometers, walking, health, intervention.

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194 Peer-Mediated Intervention for Social Communication Difficulties in Adolescents with Autism: Literature Review and Research Recommendations

Authors: Christine L. Cole

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Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) often experience social-communication difficulties that negatively impact their social interactions with typical peers. However, unlike other age and disability groups, there is little intervention research to inform best practice for these students. One evidence-based strategy for younger students with ASD is peer-mediated intervention (PMI). PMI may be particularly promising for use with adolescents, as peers are readily available and are natural experts for encouraging authentic high school conversations. This paper provides a review of previous research that evaluated the use of PMI to improve the socialcommunication skills of students with ASD. Specific intervention features associated with positive student outcomes are identified and recommendations for future research are provided. Adolescents with ASD are targeted due the critical importance of social conversation at the high school level.

Keywords: Autism, peer-mediation, social communication, adolescents.

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193 The Effects of an Online Career Intervention on University Students’ Levels of Career Adaptability

Authors: Anna Veres

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People’s ability to adapt to a constantly changing environment is essential. Career adaptability is central to Career Construction Theory, where proper adaptation to new situations, changing environments, and jobs require adequate career development. Based on current career theories and the possibilities offered by digital technology, the primary goal of this study is to develop career adaptability through an online tool. Its secondary goal is to apply for an online career intervention program and explore its developmental possibilities. A total of 132 university students from the bachelor program took part in the study, from which 65 students received a four-week online career intervention, while 67 participants formed the control group. Based on the results, it can state that career adaptability can be developed, and there is a great demand and interest from university students to use career-related programs on online platforms. Career interventions should be performed online as well if there is suitable software and a well-constructed program. Limitations and further implications are discussed.

Keywords: career adaptability, career development, online career intervention, university student

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192 The Care Management Network as an Effective Intervention in Mitigating the Risks of Hypertension

Authors: Feng-Chuan Pan, Fang-Yue Liu

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Hospitals in southern Hualien teamed with the Hypertension Joint Care Network. Working with the network, the team provided a special designed health education to the individual who had been identified as a hypertension patient in the outpatient department. Some metabolism improvements achieved. This is a retrospective study by purposively taking 106 patients from a hospital between 2008 and 2010. Records of before and after education intervention of the objects was collected and analyzed to see the how the intervention affected the patients- hypertension control via clinical parameter monitoring. The results showed that the clinical indicators, the LDL-C, the cholesterol and the systolic blood pressure were significantly improved. The study provides evidence for the effectiveness of the network in controlling hypertension.

Keywords: hypertension, joint care management network, cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome.

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191 Physical Exercise Intervention on Hypertension Patients

Authors: Ling-Lih Shen, Feng-Chuan Pan

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Chronic diseases prevailed along with economic growth as well as life style changed in recent years in Taiwan. According to the governmental statistics, hypertension related disease is the tenth of death causes with 1,816 died directly from hypertension in 2010. There were more death causes amongst the top ten had been proofed that having strong association with the hypertension, such as heart diseases, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes. Hypertension or High blood pressure is one of the major indicators for chronic diseases, and was generally perceived as the major causes of mortality. The literature generally suggested that regular physical exercise was helpful to prevent the occurrence or to ease the progress of a hypertension. This paper reported the process and outcomes in detailed of an improvement project of physical exercise intervention specific for hypertension patients. Physical information were measured before and after the project to obtain information such as weight, waistline, cholesterol (HD & LD), blood examination, as well as self-perceived health status. The intervention project involved a six-week exercise program, of which contained three times a week, 30 minutes of tutored physical exercise intervention. The project had achieved several gains in changing the subjects- behavior in terms of many important biophysical indexes. Around 20% of the participants had significantly improved their cholesterols, BMI, and changed unhealthy behaviors. Results from the project were encouraging, and would be good reference for other samples.

Keywords: Intervention, biological information, hypertension patients, behavioral changes, chronic disease

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190 Remedying Students’ Misconceptions in Learning of Chemical Bonding and Spontaneity through Intervention Discussion Learning Model (IDLM)

Authors: Ihuarulam Ambrose Ikenna

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In the past few decades, the field of chemistry education has grown tremendously and researches indicated that after traditional chemistry instruction students often lacked deep conceptual understanding and failed to integrate their ideas into coherent conceptual framework. For several concepts in chemistry, students at all levels have demonstrated difficulty in changing their initial perceptions. Their perceptions are most often wrong and don't agree with correct scientific concepts. This study explored the effectiveness of intervention discussion sections for a college general chemistry course designed to apply research on students preconceptions, knowledge integration and student explanation. Three interventions discussions lasting three hours on bond energy and spontaneity were done tested and intervention (treatment) students’ performances were compared with that of control group which did not use the experimental pedagogy. Results indicated that this instruction which was capable of identifying students' misconceptions, initial conceptions and integrating those ideas into class discussion led to enhanced conceptual understanding and better achievement for the experimental group.

Keywords: Intervention Discussion Learning Model, Learning, Remedying, Students’ misconceptions.

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189 Teachers and Sports Coaches Supporting Young People-s Mental Health: Promotion, Prevention, and Early Intervention

Authors: Kelly R. Mazzer, Debra J. Rickwood, Thea Vanags

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Young people have a high prevalence of mental health problems, yet tend not to seek help. Trusted adults in young people-s lives, such as teachers and sports coaches, can make a major positive contribution to the mental health of young people. Teachers and sports coaches may be in a position to be effective in supporting young people-s mental health through promotion, prevention and early intervention. This study reports findings from interviews with 21 teachers and 13 sports coaches of young people aged 12 to 18 in Canberra, Australia, regarding their perceptions of the relevance and effectiveness of their role in supporting young people-s mental health. Both teachers and coaches perceived having influential but slightly different roles to play in supporting mental health. There may be potential to elevate the influence of teachers and coaches as sources of support for young people and their mental health care.

Keywords: Early intervention, mental health promotion, coaches, teachers, young people

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188 A Nutritional Wellness Program for Overweight Health Care Providers in Hospital Setting: A Randomized Controlled Trial Pilot Study

Authors: Kim H. K. Choy, Oliva H. K. Chu, W. Y. Keung, B. Lim, Winnie P. Y. Tang

Abstract:

Background: The prevalence of workplace obesity is rising worldwide; therefore, the workplace is an ideal venue to implement weight control intervention. This pilot randomized controlled trial aimed to develop, implement, and evaluate a nutritional wellness program for obese health care providers working in a hospital. Methods: This hospital-based nutritional wellness program was an 8-week pilot randomized controlled trial for obese health care providers. The primary outcomes were body weight and body mass index (BMI). The secondary outcomes were serum fasting glucose, fasting cholesterol, triglyceride, high-density (HDL) and low-density (LDL) lipoprotein, body fat percentage, and body mass. Participants were randomly assigned to the intervention (n = 20) or control (n = 22) group. Participants in both groups received individual nutrition counselling and nutrition pamphlets, whereas only participants in the intervention group were given mobile phone text messages. Results: 42 participants completed the study. In comparison with the control group, the intervention group showed approximately 0.98 kg weight reduction after two months. Participants in intervention group also demonstrated clinically significant improvement in BMI, serum cholesterol level, and HDL level. There was no improvement of body fat percentage and body mass for both intervention and control groups. Conclusion: The nutritional wellness program for obese health care providers was feasible in hospital settings. Health care providers demonstrated short-term weight loss, decrease in serum fasting cholesterol level, and HDL level after completing the program.

Keywords: Health care provider, hospital, weight management, weight control.

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187 Relationship between Trauma and Acute Scrotum: Test Torsion and Epididymal Appendix Torsion

Authors: Saimir Heta, Kastriot Haxhirexha, Virtut Velmishi, Nevila Alliu, Ilma Robo

Abstract:

Background: Testicular rotation can occur at any age. The possibility to save the testicle is the fastest possible surgical intervention which is indicated by the presence of acute pain even at rest. The time element is more important to diagnose and proceed further with surgical intervention. Testicular damage is a consequence which mainly depends on the moment of onset of symptoms, at the time when the symptoms are diagnosed, the earliest action to be performed is surgical intervention. Sometimes medical tests are needed to confirm a diagnosis, or to help identify another cause for symptoms; for example, the urine test, that is used to check for infection, associated with the scrotal ultrasound test. Control of blood flow to the longitudinal supply vessels of the testicles is indicated. The sign that indicates testicular rotation is a reduction in blood flow. This is the element which is distinguished from ultrasound examination. Surgery may be needed to determine if the patient’s symptoms are caused by the rotation of the testis or any other condition. Discussion: As a surgical intervention of the emergency, the torsion of the test depends very much on the duration of the torsion, as the success in the life of the testicle depends on the fastest surgical intervention. From the previous clinic, it is noted that in any case presented to the pediatric patient diagnosed with testicular rotation, there is always a link with personal history that the patient refers to the presence of a previous episode of testicular trauma. Literature supports this fact very logically. Conclusions: Salvation without testicular atrophy depends closely on establishing the diagnosis of testicular rotation as soon as possible. Following the logic above, it can be said that the diagnosis for rotation should be performed as soon as possible, to avoid consequences that will not be favorable for the patient.

Keywords: Acute scrotum, testicular torsion, newborns, infants, clinical presentation.

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186 A Survey Proposal towards Holistic Management of Schizophrenia

Authors: Pronab Ganguly, Ahmed A. Moustafa

Abstract:

Holistic management of schizophrenia involves mainstream pharmacological intervention, complimentary medicine intervention, therapeutic intervention and other psychosocial factors such as accommodation, education, job training, employment, relationship, friendship, exercise, overall well-being, smoking, substance abuse, suicide prevention, stigmatisation, recreation, entertainment, violent behaviour, arrangement of public trusteeship and guardianship, day-day-living skill, integration with community, and management of overweight due to medications and other health complications related to medications amongst others. Our review shows that there is no integrated survey by combining all these factors. An international web-based survey was conducted to evaluate the significance of all these factors and present them in a unified manner. It is believed this investigation will contribute positively towards holistic management of schizophrenia. There will be two surveys. In the pharmacological intervention survey, five popular drugs for schizophrenia will be chosen and their efficacy as well as harmful side effects will be evaluated on a scale of 0 -10. This survey will be done by psychiatrists. In the second survey, each element of therapeutic intervention and psychosocial factors will be evaluated according to their significance on a scale of 0 - 10. This survey will be done by care givers, psychologists, case managers and case workers. For the first survey, professional bodies of psychiatrists in English speaking countries will be contacted to request them to ask their members to participate in the survey. For the second survey, professional bodies of clinical psychologist and care givers in English speaking countries will be contacted to request them to ask their members to participate in the survey. Additionally, for both the surveys, relevant professionals will be contacted through personal contact networks. For both the surveys, mean, mode, median, standard deviation and net promoter score will be calculated for each factor and then presented in a statistically significant manner. Subsequently each factor will be ranked according to their statistical significance. Additionally, country specific variation will be highlighted to identify the variation pattern. The results of these surveys will identify the relative significance of each type of pharmacological intervention, each type of therapeutic intervention and each type of psychosocial factor. The determination of this relative importance will definitely contribute to the improvement in quality of life for individuals with schizophrenia.

Keywords: Schizophrenia, holistic management, antipsychotics, quality of life.

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185 The Effect of a Nutrient Fortified Oat Drink on Iron, Zinc, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C Status among Filipino Children

Authors: Imelda Angeles-Agdeppa, Anne C. Kurilich, Yashna Harjani, Mario V. Capanzana

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The effectiveness of consuming a nutrient fortified oat drink on iron, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin C status was assessed among a cohort of school-aged Filipino children. Ultimate study implementation permitted only a within-subject comparison of change in nutritional status after four months of consuming a nutrient fortified oat drink. Thirty-eight anemic children (5-8 years) consumed an oat drink fortified with iron as NaFeEDTA, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin C for 120 days. Height, weight, serum nutrient levels, anemia status and dietary intake were assessed pre and post intervention. Thirty-four anemic children completed the intervention. After 4 months of intervention, prevalence of anemia decreased by 68% and significant improvements in iron and vitamin A status were observed. Results demonstrate the effectiveness of the fortified oat drink in alleviating anemia in young children and highlight the value of fortification programs

Keywords: Anemia, Children, Fortified Oat Drink, Nutrient status

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184 Using Project MIND - Math Is Not Difficult Strategies to Help Children with Autism Improve Mathematics Skills

Authors: Hui Fang Huang Su, Leanne Lai, Pei-Fen Li, Mei-Hwei Ho, Yu-Wen Chiu

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This study aimed to provide a practical, systematic, and comprehensive intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). A pilot study of quasi-experimental pre-post intervention with control group design was conducted to evaluate if the mathematical intervention (Project MIND - Math Is Not Difficult) increases the math comprehension of children with ASD Children with ASD in the primary grades (K-1, 2) participated in math interventions to enhance their math comprehension and cognitive ability. The Bracken basic concept scale was used to evaluate subjects’ language skills, cognitive development, and school readiness. The study found that our systemic interventions of Project MIND significantly improved the mathematical and cognitive abilities in children with autism. The results of this study may lead to a major change in effective and adequate health care services for children with ASD and their families. All statistical analyses were performed with the IBM SPSS Statistics Version 25 for Windows. The significant level was set at 0.05 P-value.

Keywords: Young Children, Autism, Mathematics, Curriculum, teaching and learning, children with special needs, Project MIND.

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183 Drawings as a Methodical Access to Reconstruct Children's Perspective on a Horse-Assisted Intervention

Authors: Annika Barzen

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In this article, the collection and analysis of drawings are implemented and discussed as a methodological approach to reconstruct children's perspective on horse-assisted interventions. For this purpose, drawings of three children (8-10 years old) were included in the research process in order to clarify the question of what insights can be derived from the drawings about the child's perspective on the intervention. The children were asked to draw a picture of themselves at the horse stable. Practical implementation considerations are disclosed. The developed analysis steps consider the work of two art historians (Erwin Panofsky and Max Imdahl) to capture the visual sense and to interpret the children's drawings. Relevant topics about the children's perspective can be inferred from the drawings. In the drawings, the following topics are important for the children: Overcoming challenges and fears in handling the horse, support from an adult in handling the horse and feeling self-confident and competent to act after completing tasks with the horse. The drawings show the main topics which are relevant for the children and can be used as a basis for conversation. All in all, the child's drawing offers a useful addition to other survey methods in order to gain further insights into the experiences of children in a horse-assisted setting.

Keywords: Children’s perspective, interpret children’s drawings, equine-assisted-intervention, methodical analysis.

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182 The IVAIRE Study: Relative Performance of Energy and Heat Recovery Ventilators in Cold Climates

Authors: D. Aubin, D. Won, H. Schleibinger, P. Lajoie, D. Gauvin, J.-M. Leclerc

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This paper describes the results obtained in a two-year randomized intervention field study investigating the impact of ventilation rates on indoor air quality (IAQ) and the respiratory health of asthmatic children in Québec City, Canada. The focus of this article is on the comparative effectiveness of heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) at increasing ventilation rates, improving IAQ, and maintaining an acceptable indoor relative humidity (RH). In 14% of the homes, the RH was found to be too low in winter. Providing more cold and dry outside air to under-ventilated homes in winter further reduces indoor RH. Thus, low-RH homes in the intervention group were chosen to receive ERVs (instead of HRVs) to increase the ventilation rate. The installation of HRVs or ERVs led to a near doubling of the ventilation rates in the intervention group homes which led to a significant reduction in the concentration of several key of pollutants. The ERVs were also effective in maintaining an acceptable indoor RH since they avoided excessive dehumidification of the home by recovering moisture from the exhaust airstream through the enthalpy core, otherwise associated with increased cold supply air rates.

Keywords: Asthma, field study, indoor air quality, ventilation.

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181 Application of the Transtheoretical Model of Exercise Behavior Change Plan in High School Students

Authors: Frank C. Pan, Chih-Hao Chen

Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to discuss the effect of the intervention of exercise behavior change plan for high school students on study subjects- social and psychological factors and exercise stages. This research uses the transtheoretical model as the research framework. One experiment group and one control group were used in a quasi-experimental design research. The experimental group accepted health-related physical fitness course and the traditional course; the control group accepted traditional physical education course. There is a significant difference before and after the intervention in the experimental group. Karl-s test shows the experimental group gained a better improvement than that in the control group. The Analysis of Covariance had shown the exercise stages (F=7.62, p<0.05), and the perceived exercise benefit (F=16.91, p<0.05) of the experimental group were obviously larger than those of the control group. There was no major effect on the perceived exercise barrier (F=0.61, p>0.05) after the intervention of exercise behavior change plan. However, the rate of high school students the practical implementation of the exercise is not high, obviously influenced by the exercise barrier. The academic and examination pressure may be the major causes of the exercise barrier in the high school.

Keywords: Transtheoretical model (TTM), High school students, exercise behavior

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180 Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Work Stress: Variation in Perceived Group Process and Outcomes

Authors: William H. O'Brien, Erin Bannon, M.A., Heather McCarren, Eileen Delaney

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Employees commonly encounter unpredictable and unavoidable work related stressors. Exposure to such stressors can evoke negative appraisals and associated adverse mental, physical, and behavioral responses. Because Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) emphasizes acceptance of unavoidable stressors and diffusion from negative appraisals, it may be particularly beneficial for work stress. Forty-five workers were randomly assigned to an ACT intervention for work stress (n = 21) or a waitlist control group (n = 24). The intervention consisted of two 3-hour sessions spaced one week apart. An examination of group process and outcomes was conducted using the Revised Sessions Rating Scale. Results indicated that the ACT participants reported that they perceived the intervention to be supportive, task focused, and without adverse therapist behaviors (e.g., feelings of being criticized or discounted). Additionally, the second session (values clarification and commitment to action) was perceived to be more supportive and task focused than the first session (mindfulness, defusion). Process ratings were correlated with outcomes. Results indicated that perceptions of therapy supportiveness and task focus were associated with reduced psychological distress and improved perceived physical health.

Keywords: Work stress, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, therapy process.

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179 Investigating the Efficacy of HIV/AIDS Psycho-Education and Behavioural Skills Training in Reducing Sexual Risk Behaviours in a Trucking Population in Nigeria

Authors: Abiodun M. Lawal, Benjamin O. Olley

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Long Distance Truck Drivers (LDTDs) have been found to be a high risk group in the spread of HIV/AIDS globally; perhaps, due to their high Sexual Risk Behaviours (SRBs). Interventions for reducing SRBs in trucking population have not been fully exploited. A quasi-experimental control group pretest-posttest design was used to assess the efficacy of psycho-education and behavioural skills training in reducing SRBs among LDTDs. Sixteen drivers rivers were randomly assigned into either experimental or control groups using balloting technique. Questionnaire was used as an instrument for data collection. Repeated measures t-test and independent t-test were used to test hypotheses. Intervention had significant effect on the SRBs among LDTDs at post-test (t{7}= 6.01, p<.01) and at follow up (t{7} = 6.42, p<.01). No significant difference in sexual risk behaviour of LDTDs at post-test and at follow-up stage. Similarly, intervention had significant effects on sexual risk behaviour at post-test (t {14} = - 4.69, p<.05) and at follow-up (t {14} = -9.56, p<.05) respectively. At post-test and follow-up stages, drivers in experimental group reported reduced SRBs than those in control group. Drivers in experimental group reported lower sexual risk behaviour a week after intervention as well as at three months follow-up than those in control group. It is concluded that HIV/AIDS preventive intervention that provides the necessary informational and behavioural skills content can significantly impact long distance truck drivers’ sexual risk behaviours.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS interventions, Long distance truck drivers, Nigeria, Sexual risk behaviours.

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178 Implementing a Database from a Requirement Specification

Authors: M. Omer, D. Wilson

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Creating a database scheme is essentially a manual process. From a requirement specification the information contained within has to be analyzed and reduced into a set of tables, attributes and relationships. This is a time consuming process that has to go through several stages before an acceptable database schema is achieved. The purpose of this paper is to implement a Natural Language Processing (NLP) based tool to produce a relational database from a requirement specification. The Stanford CoreNLP version 3.3.1 and the Java programming were used to implement the proposed model. The outcome of this study indicates that a first draft of a relational database schema can be extracted from a requirement specification by using NLP tools and techniques with minimum user intervention. Therefore this method is a step forward in finding a solution that requires little or no user intervention.

Keywords: Information Extraction, Natural Language Processing, Relation Extraction.

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177 Italian Central Guarantee Fund: An Analysis of the Guaranteed SMEs’ Default Risk

Authors: M. C. Arcuri, L. Gai, F. Ielasi

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Italian Central Guarantee Fund (CGF) has the purpose to facilitate Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs)’ access to credit. The aim of the paper is to study the evaluation method adopted by the CGF with regard to SMEs requiring its intervention. This is even more important in the light of the recent CGF reform. We analyse an initial sample of more than 500.000 guarantees from 2012 to 2018. We distinguish between a counter-guarantee delivered to a mutual guarantee institution and a guarantee directly delivered to a bank. We investigate the impact of variables related to the operations and the SMEs on Altman Z’’-score and the score consistent with CGF methodology. We verify that the type of intervention affects the scores and the initial condition changes with the new assessment criterions. 

Keywords: Banks, default risk, Italian Guarantee Fund, mutual guarantee institutions.

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176 Using Critical Systems Thinking to Improve Student Performance in Networking

Authors: Albertus G. Joubert, Roelien Goede

Abstract:

This paper explores how Critical Systems Thinking and Action Research can be used to improve student performance in Networking. When describing a system from a systems thinking perspective, the following aspects can be identified: the total system performance, the systems environment, the resources, the components and the management of the system. Following the history of system thinking we observe three emerged methodologies namely, hard systems, soft systems, and critical systems. This paper uses Critical Systems Thinking (CST) which describes systems in terms of contradictions and conflict. It demonstrates how CST can be used in an Action Research (AR) project to improve the performance of students. Intervention in terms of student assessment is discussed and the impact of the intervention is discussed.

Keywords: Action research, computer networks, critical systems thinking, higher education.

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175 Bio-Psycho-Social Consequences and Effects in Fall-Efficacy Scale in Seniors Using Exercise Intervention of Motor Learning According to Yoga Techniques

Authors: Milada Krejci, Martin Hill, Vaclav Hosek, Dobroslava Jandova, Jiri Kajzar, Pavel Blaha

Abstract:

The paper declares effects of exercise intervention of the research project “Basic research of balance changes in seniors”, granted by the Czech Science Foundation. The objective of the presented study is to define predictors, which influence bio-psycho-social consequences and effects of balance ability in senior 65 years old and above. We focused on the Fall-Efficacy Scale changes evaluation in seniors. Comprehensive hypothesis of the project declares, that motion uncertainty (dyskinesia) can negatively affect the well-being of a senior in bio-psycho-social context. In total, random selection and testing of 100 seniors (30 males, 70 females) from Prague and Central Bohemian region was provided. The sample was divided by stratified random selection into experimental and control groups, who underwent input and output testing. For diagnostics the methods of Medical Anamnesis, Functional anthropological examinations, Tinetti Balance Assessment Tool, SF-36 Health Survey, Anamnestic comparative self-assessment scale were used. Intervention method called "Life in Balance" based on yoga techniques was applied in four-week cycle. Results of multivariate regression were verified by repeated measures ANOVA: subject factor, phase of intervention (between-subject factor), body fluid (within-subject factor) and phase of intervention × body fluid interaction). ANOVA was performed with a repetition involving the factors of subjects, experimental/control group, phase of intervention (independent variable), and x phase interaction followed by Bonferroni multiple comparison assays with a test strength of at least 0.8 on the probability level p < 0.05. In the paper results of the first-year investigation of the three years running project are analysed. Results of balance tests confirmed no significant difference between females and males in pre-test. Significant improvements in balance and walking ability were observed in experimental group in females comparing to males (F = 128.4, p < 0.001). In the females control group, there was no significant change in post- test, while in the female experimental group positive changes in posture and spine flexibility in post-tests were found. It seems that females even in senior age react better to incentives of intervention in balance and spine flexibility. On the base of results analyses, we can declare the significant improvement in social balance markers after intervention in the experimental group (F = 10.5, p < 0.001). In average, seniors are used to take four drugs daily. Number of drugs can contribute to allergy symptoms and balance problems. It can be concluded that static balance and walking ability of seniors according Tinetti Balance scale correlate significantly with psychic and social monitored markers.

Keywords: Exercises, balance, seniors 65+, health, mental and social balance.

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174 A Review of Pharmacological Prevention of Peri-and Post-Procedural Myocardial Injury after Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

Authors: Syed Dawood Md. Taimur, Md. Hasanur Rahman, Syeda Fahmida Afrin, Farzana Islam

Abstract:

The concept of myocardial injury, although first recognized from animal studies, is now recognized as a clinical phenomenon that may result in microvascular damage, no-reflow phenomenon, myocardial stunning, myocardial hibernation and ischemic preconditioning. The final consequence of this event is left ventricular (LV) systolic dysfunction leading to increased morbidity and mortality. The typical clinical case of reperfusion injury occurs in acute myocardial infarction (MI) with ST segment elevation in which an occlusion of a major epicardial coronary artery is followed by recanalization of the artery. This may occur spontaneously or by means of thrombolysis and/or by primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with efficient platelet inhibition by aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid), clopidogrel and glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors. In recent years, percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has become a well-established technique for the treatment of coronary artery disease. PCI improves symptoms in patients with coronary artery disease and it has been increasing safety of procedures. However, peri- and post-procedural myocardial injury, including angiographical slow coronary flow, microvascular embolization, and elevated levels of cardiac enzyme, such as creatine kinase and troponin-T and -I, has also been reported even in elective cases. Furthermore, myocardial reperfusion injury at the beginning of myocardial reperfusion, which causes tissue damage and cardiac dysfunction, may occur in cases of acute coronary syndrome. Because patients with myocardial injury is related to larger myocardial infarction and have a worse long-term prognosis than those without myocardial injury, it is important to prevent myocardial injury during and/or after PCI in patients with coronary artery disease. To date, many studies have demonstrated that adjunctive pharmacological treatment suppresses myocardial injury and increases coronary blood flow during PCI procedures. In this review, we highlight the usefulness of pharmacological treatment in combination with PCI in attenuating myocardial injury in patients with coronary artery disease.

Keywords: Coronary artery disease, Percutaneous coronary intervention, Myocardial injury, Pharmacology.

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173 Pilot Trial of Evidence-Based Integrative Group Therapy to Improve Executive Functioning among Adults: Implications for Community Mental Health and Training Clinics

Authors: B. Parchem, M. Watanabe, D. Modrakovic, L. Mathew, A. Franklin, M. Cao, R. E. Broudy

Abstract:

Objective: Executive functioning (EF) deficits underlie several mental health diagnoses including ADHD, anxiety, and depression. Community mental health clinics face extensive waitlists for services with many referrals involving EF deficits. A pilot trial of a four-week group therapy was developed using key components from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and mindfulness with an aim to improve EF skills and offer low-fee services. Method: Eight adults (M = 34.5) waiting for services at a community clinic were enrolled in a four-week group therapy at an in-house training clinic for doctoral trainees. Baseline EF, pre-/post-intervention ADHD and distress symptoms, group satisfaction, and curriculum helpfulness were assessed. Results: Downward trends in ADHD and distress symptoms pre/post-intervention were not significant. Favorable responses on group satisfaction and helpfulness suggest clinical utility. Conclusion: Preliminary pilot data from a brief group therapy to improve EF may be an efficacious, acceptable, and feasible intervention for adults waiting for services at community mental health and training clinics where there are high demands and limits to services and staffs.

Keywords: Executive functioning, cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, mindfulness, adult group therapy.

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172 The Effect of Motor Learning Based Computer-Assisted Practice for Children with Handwriting Deficit – Comparing with the Effect of Traditional Sensorimotor Approach

Authors: Shao-Hsia Chang, Nan-Ying Yu

Abstract:

The objective of this study was to test how advanced digital technology enables a more effective training on the handwriting of children with handwriting deficit. This study implemented the graphomotor apparatuses to a computer-assisted instruction system. In a randomized controlled trial, the experiments for verifying the intervention effect were conducted. Forty two children with handwriting deficit were assigned to computer-assisted instruction, sensorimotor training or control (no intervention) group. Handwriting performance was measured using the Elementary reading/writing test and computerized handwriting evaluation before and after 6 weeks of intervention. Analysis of variance of change scores were conducted to show whether statistically significant difference across the three groups. Significant difference was found among three groups. Computer group shows significant difference from the other two groups. Significance was denoted in near-point, far-point copy, dictation test, and writing from phonetic symbols. Writing speed and mean stroke velocity in near-, far-point and short paragraph copy were found significantly difference among three groups. Computer group shows significant improvement from the other groups. For clinicians and school teachers, the results of this study provide a motor control based insight for the improvement of handwriting difficulties.

Keywords: Dysgraphia, computerized handwriting evaluation, sensorimotor program, computer assisted program.

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171 Java Based Automatic Curriculum Generator for Children with Trisomy 21

Authors: E. Supriyanto, S. C. Seow

Abstract:

Early Intervention Program (EIP) is required to improve the overall development of children with Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome). In order to help trainer and parent in the implementation of EIP, a support system has been developed. The support system is able to screen data automatically, store and analyze data, generate individual EIP (curriculum) with optimal training duration and to generate training automatically. The system consists of hardware and software where the software has been implemented using Java language and Linux Fedora. The software has been tested to ensure the functionality and reliability. The prototype has been also tested in Down syndrome centers. Test result shows that the system is reliable to be used for generation of an individual curriculum which includes the training program to improve the motor, cognitive, and combination abilities of Down syndrome children under 6 years.

Keywords: Early intervention program (curriculum), Trisomy21, support system, Java.

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170 PRENACEL: Development and Evaluation of an M-Health Strategy to Improve Prenatal Care in Brazil

Authors: E. M. Vieira, C. S. Vieira, L. P. Bonifácio, L. M. de Oliveira Ciabati, A. C. A. Franzon, F. S. Zaratini, J. A. C. Sanchez, M. S. Andrade, J. P. Dias de Souza

Abstract:

The quality of prenatal care is key to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality. Communication between the health service and users can stimulate prevention and care. M-health has been an important and low cost strategy to health education. The PRENACEL programme (prenatal in the cell phone) was developed. It consists of a programme of information via SMS from the 20th week of pregnancy up to 12th week after delivery. Messages were about prenatal care, birth, contraception and breastfeeding. Communication of the pregnant woman asking questions about their health was possible. The objective of this study was to evaluate the implementation of PRENACEL as a useful complement to the standard prenatal care. Twenty health clinics were selected and randomized by cluster, 10 as the intervention group and 10 as the control group. In the intervention group, women and their partner were invited to participate. The control group received the standard prenatal care. All women were interviewed in the immediate post-partum and in the 12th and 24th week post-partum. Most women were married, had more than 8 years of schooling and visit the clinic more than 6 times during prenatal care. The intervention group presented lowest percentage of higher economic participants (5.6%), less single mothers and no drug user. It also presented more prenatal care visits than the control group and it was less likely to present Severe Acute Maternal Mortality when compared to control group as well as higher percentage of partners (75.4%) was present at the birth compared to control group. Although the study is still being carried out, preliminary data are showing positive results of the compliance of women to prenatal care.

Keywords: Cellphone, health technology, prenatal care, prevention.

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169 Human Security Providers in Fragile State under Asymmetric War Conditions

Authors: Luna Shamieh

Abstract:

Various players are part of the game in an asymmetric war, all making efforts to provide human security to their own adherents. Although a fragile state is not able to provide sufficient and comprehensive services, it still provides special services and security to the elite; the insurgents as well provide services and security to their associates. The humanitarian organisations, on the other hand, provide some fundamental elements of human security, but only in the regions, they are able to access when possible (if possible). The counterinsurgents (security forces of the state and intervention forces) operate within a narrow band defined by the vision of the responsibility to protect and the perspective of the resolution of the conflict through combat; hence, the possibility to provide human security is shaken at this end. This article examines how each player provides human security from the perspective of freedom from want in order to secure basic and strategic needs, freedom from fear through providing protection against all kinds of violence, and the freedom to live in dignity. It identifies a vicious cycle caused by the intervention of the different players causing a centrifugal force that may lead to disintegration of the nation under war.

Keywords: Human security, asymmetric war, counter insurgency, fragile state, insurgency.

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168 Water Reallocation Policies – The Importance of Rural and Urban Differences in Alberta, Canada

Authors: Henning Bjornlund, Alec Zuo, Sarah Wheeler, Rob de Loë

Abstract:

There is currently intensive debate in Alberta, Canada, regarding rural to urban water reallocation. This paper explores the demographic and attitudinal influences that are associated with the acceptance of water reallocation policies and whether such acceptance differs between urban and rural residents. We investigate three policy orientations in regards to water policies: i) government intervention; ii) environmental protection; and iii) protecting irrigators- water rights. We find that urban dwellers are more likely to favour government intervention while rural dwellers are more likely to support policies that aim at protecting irrigators- water rights. While urban dwellers are also more likely to favour environmental protection, the difference is not statistically significant. We also find that other factors have a significant impact on policy choice irrespective of residence such as demographic and socioeconomic factors as well as the values people hold toward water and the environment.

Keywords: Canada, rural, urban, water transfers.

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