Jacobs Institute of Women's Health

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    GW Medicine, Fall 1970

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    Break out: Urogenital schistosomiasis and Schistosoma haematobium infection in the post-genomic era

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    Information Interface - Volume 11, Issue 6 - November/December 1987

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    A New Look at Care in Pregnancy: Simple, Effective Interventions for Neglected Populations

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    Background Although this is beginning to change, the content of antenatal care has been relatively neglected in safe-motherhood program efforts. This appears in part to be due to an unwarranted belief that interventions over this period have far less impact than those provided around the time of birth. In this par, we review available evidence for 21 interventions potentially deliverable during pregnancy at high coverage to neglected populations in low income countries, with regard to effectiveness in reducing risk of: maternal mortality, newborn mortality, stillbirth, prematurity and intrauterine growth restriction. Selection was restricted to interventions that can be provided by non-professional health auxiliaries and not requiring laboratory support. Methods In this narrative review, we included relevant Cochrane and other systematic reviews and did comprehensive bibliographic searches. Inclusion criteria varied by intervention; where available randomized controlled trial evidence was insufficient, observational study evidence was considered. For each intervention we focused on overall contribution to our outcomes of interest, across varying epidemiologies. Results In the aggregate, achieving high effective coverage for this set of interventions would very substantially reduce risk for our outcomes of interest and reduce outcome inequities. Certain specific interventions, if pushed to high coverage have significant potential impact across many settings. For example, reliable detection of pre-eclampsia followed by timely delivery could prevent up to ¼ of newborn and stillbirth deaths and over 90% of maternal eclampsia/pre-eclampsia deaths. Other interventions have potent effects in specific settings: in areas of high P falciparum burden, systematic use of insecticide-treated nets and/or intermittent presumptive therapy in pregnancy could reduce maternal mortality by up to 10%, newborn mortality by up to 20%, and stillbirths by up to 25–30%. Behavioral interventions targeting practices at birth and in the hours that follow can have substantial impact in settings where many births happen at home: in such circumstances early initiation of breastfeeding can reduce risk of newborn death by up to 20%; good thermal care practices can reduce mortality risk by a similar order of magnitude. Conclusions Simple interventions delivered during pregnancy have considerable potential impact on important mortality outcomes. More programmatic effort is warranted to ensure high effective coverage

    A single baseline ultrasound assessment of fibroid presence and size is strongly predictive of future uterine procedure: 8-year follow-up of randomly sampled premenopausal women aged 35-49 years.

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    STUDY QUESTION: How well can a single baseline ultrasound assessment of fibroid burden (presence or absence of fibroids and size of largest, if present) predict future probability of having a major uterine procedure? SUMMARY ANSWER: During an 8-year follow-up period, the risk of having a major uterine procedure was 2% for those without fibroids and increased with fibroid size for those with fibroids, reaching 47% for those with fibroids ≥4 cm in diameter at baseline. WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY: Uterine fibroids are a leading indication for hysterectomy. However, when fibroids are found, there are few available data to help clinicians advise patients about disease progression. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION: Women who were 35-49 years old were randomly selected from the membership of a large urban health plan; 80% of those determined to be eligible were enrolled and screened with ultrasound for fibroids ≥0.5 cm in diameter. African-American and white premenopausal participants who responded to at least one follow-up interview (N = 964, 85% of those eligible) constituted the study cohort. During follow-up (5822 person-years), participants self-reported any major uterine procedure (67% hysterectomies). Life-table analyses and Cox regression (with censoring for menopause) were used to estimate the risk of having a uterine procedure for women with no fibroids, small (diameter), medium (2-3.9 cm), and large fibroids (≥4 cm). Differences between African-American and white women, importance of a clinical diagnosis of fibroids prior to study enrollment, and the impact of submucosal fibroids on risk were investigated. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS: There was a greater loss to follow-up for African-Americans than whites (19 versus 11%). For those with follow-up data, 64% had fibroids at baseline, 33% of whom had had a prior diagnosis. Of those with fibroids, 27% had small fibroids (diameter), 46% had medium (largest fibroid 2-3.9 cm in diameter), and 27% had large fibroids (largest ≥4 cm in diameter). Twenty-one percent had at least one submucosal fibroid. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE: Major uterine procedures were reported by 115 women during follow-up. The estimated risk of having a procedure in any given year of follow-up for those with fibroids compared with those without fibroids increased markedly with fibroid-size category (from 4-fold, confidence interval (CI) (1.4-11.1) for the small fibroids to 10-fold, CI (4.4-24.8) for the medium fibroids, to 27-fold, CI (11.5-65.2) for the large fibroids). This influence of fibroid size on risk did not differ between African-Americans and whites (P-value for interaction = 0.88). Once fibroid size at enrollment was accounted for, having a prior diagnosis at the time of ultrasound screening was not predictive of having a procedure. Exclusion of women with a submucosal fibroid had little influence on the results. The 8-year risk of a procedure based on lifetable analyses was 2% for women with no fibroids, 8, 23, and 47%, respectively, for women who had small, medium or large fibroids at enrollment. Given the strong association of fibroid size with subsequent risk of a procedure, these findings are unlikely to be due to chance. LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION: Despite a large sample size, the number of women having procedures during follow-up was relatively small. Thus, covariates such as BMI, which were not important in our analyses, may have associations that were too small to detect with our sample size. Another limitation is that the medical procedures were self-reported. However, we attempted to retrieve medical records when participants agreed, and 77% of the total procedures reported were verified. Our findings are likely to be generalizable to other African-American and white premenopausal women in their late 30s and 40s, but other ethnic groups have not been studied. WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS: Though further studies are needed to confirm and extend the results, our findings provide an initial estimate of disease progression that will be helpful to clinicians and their patients. STUDY FUNDING/COMPETING INTERESTS: Funding came from the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the Office of Research on Minority Health, National Institutes of Health, Health and Human Services (IRB #OH95-E-N048). The authors have no conflicts of interest. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: Not applicable

    Medicine + Health Magazine, Fall 2015

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    Site Visit to Richmond and Hampton Roads — Bon Secours Health System, Inc.

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    The first in a series of three site visits leading to an April 27–28, 2000, conference in Annapolis, Maryland, on hospital-based health care systems in transition after the enactment of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (BBA) and the Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP Balanced Budget Refinement Act of 1999 (BBRA). The site visit was designed to better understand how changing payment incentives — particularly the move to prospective payment systems for postacute services — has affected the ability to implement a continuum of care across delivery sites. It examined the Bon Secours Health System\u27s operations in Virginia, which include four hospitals in Richmond and three hospitals in the Hampton Roads area, in addition to nursing care, home health, assisted living, and ambulatory care facilities. Discussions centered on shifts in sources of revenue, market consolidation and competition, and the challenges of developing an infrastructure across the continuum of care

    Return to University After a Stroke: An Autoethnography

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    Background and Aims: Return to university presents a unique transition for the person with stroke who may demonstrate with impairments and may have difficulties while engaging in this change. This study will explore elements that comprise the needs and factors of the stroke survivor and supports or accommodations that may improve success of the student returning to university. Methods: An autoethnography was used with narrative journals and poems dated June 2003 to October 2005, interviews with friends, family and professors and a literature review. Data analysis included an open-coding procedure to find themes from the journal entries, interviews and narrative poems. Results: The participant was 24 years old at the time of the stroke and 18 months later started to engage in clinical rotations experiencing difficulties. Four themes emerged from the analysis of the narrative journal entries, poems and interviews: internal/external personal attributes evolve over time, shaping success or failure as the stroke survivor returns to university, internal/external perceptions of self evolve over time, shaping success or failure as the stroke survivor returns to university, emotional awareness shapes success or failure as the stroke survivor returns to university and the external environment shapes success or failure as the stroke survivor returns to university. Discussion: The results demonstrate the process of change of the participant that was ongoing and dynamic throughout the journey and dependent upon the environment, perceptions of others, perceptions of self, personal attributes, and the emotions. The impact of time and experience are highlighted throughout the return to university. Recommendations for students and educators are provided

    Children with Special Health Care Needs: Minding the Gaps

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    This background paper examines the issue of children with special health care needs and their interaction with the health care system. Results from recent national and state surveys and studies were used to review the medical expenditures, utilization, and insurance coverage of these children. The paper also discusses weaknesses within the private and public delivery and financing systems that may hinder the access of certain families with children with special health care needs to important services


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