81 research outputs found

    The perspective of rural physicians providing abortion in Canada: qualitative findings of the BC Abortion Providers Survey (BCAPS).

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    BACKGROUND: An increasing proportion of Canadian induced abortions are performed in large urban areas. For unknown reasons the number of rural abortion providers in Canadian provinces, such as British Columbia (BC), has declined substantially. This study explored the experiences of BC rural and urban physicians providing abortion services. METHODS: The mixed methods BC Abortion Providers Survey employed self-administered questionnaires, distributed to all known current and some past BC abortion providers in 2011. The optional semi-structured interviews are the focus of this analysis. Interview questions probed the experiences, facilitators and challenges faced by abortion providers, and their future intentions. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using cross-case and thematic analysis. RESULTS: Twenty interviews were completed and transcribed, representing 13/27 (48.1%) rural abortion providers, and 7/19 (36.8%) of urban providers in BC. Emerging themes differed between urban and rural providers. Most urban providers worked within clinics and reported a supportive environment. Rural physicians, all providing surgical abortions within hospitals, reported challenging barriers to provision including operating room scheduling, anesthetist and nursing logistical issues, high demand for services, professional isolation, and scarcity of replacement abortion providers. Many rural providers identified a need to "fly under the radar" in their small community. DISCUSSION: This first study of experiences among rural and urban abortion providers in Canada identifies addressable challenges faced by rural physicians. Rural providers expressed a need for increased support from hospital administration and policy. Further challenges identified include a desire for continuing professional education opportunities, and for available replacement providers

    Dispensing mifepristone for medical abortion in Canada: Pharmacists' experiences of the first year.

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    BACKGROUND: Mifepristone for medical abortion was first dispensed by community pharmacists in Canada directly to patients in January 2017. We asked about pharmacists' experiences over their first year dispensing mifepristone in order to evaluate the frequency of the new practice and assess availability in urban/rural pharmacies. METHODS: From August to December 2019, we invited 433 community pharmacists who had completed a baseline survey at least 1 year prior to participate in a follow-up online survey. We summarized categorical data using counts and proportions and conducted a qualitative thematic analysis of open-ended responses. RESULTS: Among 122 participants, 67.2% had dispensed the product, and 48.4% routinely stocked mifepristone. Pharmacists reported a mean of 26 and median of 3 (interquartile range, 1, 8) mifepristone prescriptions filled in their pharmacies in the previous year. Participants perceived that the benefits of making mifepristone available in pharmacies included increased abortion access for patients (n = 115; 94.3%), reduced pressure on the health care system (n = 104; 85.3%), increased rural and remote abortion access (n = 103; 84.4%) and increased interprofessional collaborations (n = 48; 39.3%). Few participants reported challenges to maintaining adequate stock of mifepristone, but these challenges included low demand (n = 24; 19.7%), short expiry dating (n = 12; 9.8%) and drug shortages (n = 8; 6.6%). The overwhelming majority, 96.7%, reported that their communities did not resist the provision of mifepristone by their pharmacy. INTERPRETATION: Participating pharmacists reported many benefits and very few barriers to stocking and dispensing mifepristone. Both urban and rural communities responded positively to enhanced access to mifepristone in their community. CONCLUSIONS: Mifepristone is well accepted by pharmacists within the primary care system in Canada

    Slow implementation of mifepristone medical termination of pregnancy in Quebec, Canada: a qualitative investigation.

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    Objectives: Mifepristone for first-trimester medical termination of pregnancy (MTOP) became available in Quebec in 2018, one year after the rest of Canada. Using the theory of the Diffusion of Innovation (DOI) and the transtheoretical model of change (TTM), we investigated factors influencing the implementation of mifepristone MTOP in Quebec.Material and Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 37 Quebec physicians in early 2018. Deductive thematic analysis guided by the theory of DOI explored facilitators and barriers to physicians' adoption of mifepristone MTOP. We then classified participants into five stages of mifepristone adoption based on the TTM. Follow-up data collection one year later assessed further adoption.Results: At baseline, three physicians provided mifepristone MTOP (Maintenance) and two were about to start (Action). Thirteen physicians at Preparation and Advanced Contemplation stages intended to start while, within the Slow Contemplation, two intended to start and ten were unsure. Seven had no intention to provide mifepristone MTOP (Pre-Contemplation). Major reported barriers were: complexity of local health care organisations, medical policy restrictions, lack of support, and general uncertainty. One year later, ten physicians provided mifepristone MTOP (including three at baseline) and nine still intended to, while seventeen did not intend to start provision. Seven of sixteen participants (44%) who worked in TOP clinics at baseline were still not providing MTOP with mifepristone one year later.Conclusion: Despite ideological support, mifepristone MTOP uptake in Quebec is slow and laborious, mainly due to restrictive medical policies, vested interests in surgical provision and administrative inertia

    A Virtual Community of Practice to Support Physician Uptake of a Novel Abortion Practice: Mixed Methods Case Study.

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    BACKGROUND: Virtual communities of practice (VCoPs) have been used to support innovation and quality in clinical care. The drug mifepristone was introduced in Canada in 2017 for medical abortion. We created a VCoP to support implementation of mifepristone abortion practice across Canada. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to describe the development and use of the Canadian Abortion Providers Support-Communauté de pratique canadienne sur l'avortement (CAPS-CPCA) VCoP and explore physicians' experience with CAPS-CPCA and their views on its value in supporting implementation. METHODS: This was a mixed methods intrinsic case study of Canadian health care providers' use and physicians' perceptions of the CAPS-CPCA VCoP during the first 2 years of a novel practice. We sampled both physicians who joined the CAPS-CPCA VCoP and those who were interested in providing the novel practice but did not join the VCoP. We designed the VCoP features to address known and discovered barriers to implementation of medication abortion in primary care. Our secure web-based platform allowed asynchronous access to information, practice resources, clinical support, discussion forums, and email notices. We collected data from the platform and through surveys of physician members as well as interviews with physician members and nonmembers. We analyzed descriptive statistics for website metrics, physicians' characteristics and practices, and their use of the VCoP. We used qualitative methods to explore the physicians' experiences and perceptions of the VCoP. RESULTS: From January 1, 2017, to June 30, 2019, a total of 430 physicians representing all provinces and territories in Canada joined the VCoP and 222 (51.6%) completed a baseline survey. Of these 222 respondents, 156 (70.3%) were family physicians, 170 (80.2%) were women, and 78 (35.1%) had no prior abortion experience. In a survey conducted 12 months after baseline, 77.9% (120/154) of the respondents stated that they had provided mifepristone abortion and 33.9% (43/127) said the VCoP had been important or very important. Logging in to the site was burdensome for some, but members valued downloadable resources such as patient information sheets, consent forms, and clinical checklists. They found email announcements helpful for keeping up to date with changing regulations. Few asked clinical questions to the VCoP experts, but physicians felt that this feature was important for isolated or rural providers. Information collected through member polls about health system barriers to implementation was used in the project's knowledge translation activities with policy makers to mitigate these barriers. CONCLUSIONS: A VCoP developed to address known and discovered barriers to uptake of a novel medication abortion method engaged physicians from across Canada and supported some, including those with no prior abortion experience, to implement this practice. INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID): RR2-10.1136/bmjopen-2018-028443

    Could implementation of mifepristone address Canada's urban-rural abortion access disparity: a mixed-methods implementation study protocol.

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    INTRODUCTION: In January 2017, mifepristone-induced medical abortion was made available in Canada. In this study, we will seek to (1) understand facilitators and barriers to the implementation of mifepristone across Canada, (2) assess the impact of a 'community of practice' clinical and health service support platform and (3) engage in and assess the impact of integrated knowledge translation (iKT) activities aimed to improve health policy, systems and service delivery issues to enhance patient access to mifepristone. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This prospective mixed-methods implementation study will involve a national sample of physicians and pharmacists recruited via an online training programme, professional networks and a purpose-built community of practice website. Surveys that explore constructs related to diffusion of innovation and Godin's behaviour change frameworks will be conducted at baseline and at 6 months, and qualitative data will be collected from electronic interactions on the website. Survey participants and a purposeful sample of decision-makers will be invited to participate in in-depth interviews. Descriptive analyses will be conducted for quantitative data. Thematic analysis guided by the theoretical frameworks will guide interpretation of qualitative data. We will conduct and assess iKT activities involving Canada's leading health system and health professional leaders, including evidence briefs, Geographical Information System (GIS)maps, face-to-face meetings and regular electronic exchanges. Findings will contribute to understanding the mechanisms of iKT relationships and activities that have a meaningful effect on uptake of evidence into policy and practice. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethical approval was received from the University of British Columbia Children's and Women's Hospital Ethics Review Board (H16-01006). Full publication of the work will be sought in an international peer-reviewed journal. Findings will be disseminated to research participants through newsletters and media interviews, and to policy-makers through invited evidence briefs and face-to-face presentations

    Perspectives Among Canadian Physicians on Factors Influencing Implementation of Mifepristone Medical Abortion: A National Qualitative Study.

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    PURPOSE: Access to family planning health services in Canada has been historically inadequate and inequitable. A potential solution appeared when Health Canada approved mifepristone, the gold standard for medical abortion, in July 2015. We sought to investigate the factors that influence successful initiation and ongoing provision of medical abortion services among Canadian health professionals and how these factors relate to abortion policies, systems, and service access throughout Canada. METHODS: We conducted 1-on-1 semistructured interviews with a national sample of abortion-providing and nonproviding physicians and health system stakeholders in Canadian health care settings. Our data collection, thematic analysis, and interpretation were guided by Diffusion of Innovation theory. RESULTS: We conducted interviews with 90 participants including rural practitioners and those with no previous abortion experience. In the course of our study, Health Canada removed mifepristone restrictions. Our results suggest that Health Canada's initial restrictions discouraged physicians from providing mifepristone and were inconsistent with provincial licensing standards, thereby limiting patient access. Once deregulated, remaining factors were primarily related to local and regional implementation processes. Participants held strong perceptions that mifepristone was the new standard of care for medical abortion in Canada and within the scope of primary care practice. CONCLUSION: Health Canada's removal of mifepristone restrictions facilitated the implementation of abortion care in the primary care setting. Our results are unique because Canada is the first country to facilitate provision of medical abortion in primary care via evidence-based deregulation of mifepristone

    Variation in the ICAM1-ICAM4-ICAM5 locus is associated with systemic lupus erythematosus susceptibility in multiple ancestries

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    Objective: Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE; OMIM 152700) is a chronic autoimmune disease for which the aetiology includes genetic and environmental factors. ITGAM, integrin ?M(complement component 3 receptor 3 subunit) encoding a ligand for intracellular adhesion molecule (ICAM) proteins, is an established SLE susceptibility locus. This study aimed to evaluate the independent and joint effects of genetic variations in the genes that encode ITGAM and ICAM. Methods: The authors examined several markers in the ICAM1-ICAM4-ICAM5 locus on chromosome 19p13 and the single ITGAM polymorphism (rs1143679) using a large-scale case-control study of 17 481 unrelated participants from four ancestry populations. The singlemarker association and gene-gene interaction were analysed for each ancestry, and a meta-analysis across the four ancestries was performed. Results: The A-allele of ICAM1-ICAM4-ICAM5 rs3093030, associated with elevated plasma levels of soluble ICAM1, and the A-allele of ITGAM rs1143679 showed the strongest association with increased SLE susceptibility in each of the ancestry populations and the trans-ancestry meta-analysis (ORmeta=1.16, 95% CI 1.11 to 1.22; p=4.88 × 10-10 and ORmeta=1.67, 95% CI 1.55 to 1.79; p=3.32 × 10-46, respectively). The effect of the ICAM single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) was independent of the effect of the ITGAM SNP rs1143679, and carriers of both ICAM rs3093030-AA and ITGAM rs1143679-AA had an OR of 4.08 compared with those with no risk allele in either SNP (95% CI 2.09 to 7.98; p=3.91 × 10-5). Conclusion: These findings are the first to suggest that an ICAM-integrin-mediated pathway contributes to susceptibility to SLE

    The CCP4 suite: integrative software for macromolecular crystallography

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    The Collaborative Computational Project No. 4 (CCP4) is a UK-led international collective with a mission to develop, test, distribute and promote software for macromolecular crystallography. The CCP4 suite is a multiplatform collection of programs brought together by familiar execution routines, a set of common libraries and graphical interfaces. The CCP4 suite has experienced several considerable changes since its last reference article, involving new infrastructure, original programs and graphical interfaces. This article, which is intended as a general literature citation for the use of the CCP4 software suite in structure determination, will guide the reader through such transformations, offering a general overview of the new features and outlining future developments. As such, it aims to highlight the individual programs that comprise the suite and to provide the latest references to them for perusal by crystallographers around the world.Jon Agirre is a Royal Society University Research Fellow (UF160039 and URF\R\221006). Mihaela Atanasova is funded by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC; EP/R513386/1). Haroldas Bagdonas is funded by The Royal Society (RGF/R1/181006). Jose´ Javier Burgos-Ma´rmol and Daniel J. Rigden are supported by the BBSRC (BB/S007105/1). Robbie P. Joosten is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 871037 (iNEXTDiscovery) and by CCP4. This work was supported by the Medical Research Council as part of United Kingdom Research and Innovation, also known as UK Research and Innovation: MRC file reference No. MC_UP_A025_1012 to Garib N. Murshudov, which also funded Keitaro Yamashita, Paul Emsley and Fei Long. Robert A. Nicholls is funded by the BBSRC (BB/S007083/1). Soon Wen Hoh is funded by the BBSRC (BB/T012935/1). Kevin D. Cowtan and Paul S. Bond are funded in part by the BBSRC (BB/S005099/1). John Berrisford and Sameer Velankar thank the European Molecular Biology Laboratory–European Bioinformatics Institute, who supported this work. Andrea Thorn was supported in the development of AUSPEX by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (05K19WWA and 05K22GU5) and by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (TH2135/2-1). Petr Kolenko and Martin Maly´ are funded by the MEYS CR (CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/16_019/0000778). Martin Maly´ is funded by the Czech Academy of Sciences (86652036) and CCP4/STFC (521862101). Anastassis Perrakis acknowledges funding from iNEXT (grant No. 653706), iNEXT-Discovery (grant No. 871037), West-Life (grant No. 675858) and EOSC-Life (grant No. 824087) funded by the Horizon 2020 program of the European Commission. Robbie P. Joosten has been the recipient of a Veni grant (722.011.011) and a Vidi grant (723.013.003) from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). Maarten L. Hekkelman, Robbie P. Joosten and Anastassis Perrakis thank the Research High Performance Computing facility of the Netherlands Cancer Institute for providing and maintaining computation resources and acknowledge the institutional grant from the Dutch Cancer Society and the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. Tarik R. Drevon is funded by the BBSRC (BB/S007040/1). Randy J. Read is supported by a Principal Research Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust (grant 209407/Z/17/Z). Atlanta G. Cook is supported by a Wellcome Trust SRF (200898) and a Wellcome Centre for Cell Biology core grant (203149). Isabel Uso´n acknowledges support from STFC-UK/CCP4: ‘Agreement for the integration of methods into the CCP4 software distribution, ARCIMBOLDO_LOW’ and Spanish MICINN/AEI/FEDER/UE (PID2021-128751NB-I00). Pavol Skubak and Navraj Pannu were funded by the NWO Applied Sciences and Engineering Domain and CCP4 (grant Nos. 13337 and 16219). Bernhard Lohkamp was supported by the Ro¨ntgen A˚ ngstro¨m Cluster (grant 349-2013-597). Nicholas Pearce is currently funded by the SciLifeLab and Wallenberg Data Driven Life Science Program (grant KAW 2020.0239) and has previously been funded by a Veni Fellowship (VI.Veni.192.143) from the Dutch Research Council (NWO), a Long-term EMBO fellowship (ALTF 609-2017) and EPSRC grant EP/G037280/1. David M. Lawson received funding from BBSRC Institute Strategic Programme Grants (BB/P012523/1 and BB/P012574/1). Lucrezia Catapano is the recipient of an STFC/CCP4-funded PhD studentship (Agreement No: 7920 S2 2020 007).Peer reviewe

    The FANCM:p.Arg658* truncating variant is associated with risk of triple-negative breast cancer

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    Abstract: Breast cancer is a common disease partially caused by genetic risk factors. Germline pathogenic variants in DNA repair genes BRCA1, BRCA2, PALB2, ATM, and CHEK2 are associated with breast cancer risk. FANCM, which encodes for a DNA translocase, has been proposed as a breast cancer predisposition gene, with greater effects for the ER-negative and triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) subtypes. We tested the three recurrent protein-truncating variants FANCM:p.Arg658*, p.Gln1701*, and p.Arg1931* for association with breast cancer risk in 67,112 cases, 53,766 controls, and 26,662 carriers of pathogenic variants of BRCA1 or BRCA2. These three variants were also studied functionally by measuring survival and chromosome fragility in FANCM−/− patient-derived immortalized fibroblasts treated with diepoxybutane or olaparib. We observed that FANCM:p.Arg658* was associated with increased risk of ER-negative disease and TNBC (OR = 2.44, P = 0.034 and OR = 3.79; P = 0.009, respectively). In a country-restricted analysis, we confirmed the associations detected for FANCM:p.Arg658* and found that also FANCM:p.Arg1931* was associated with ER-negative breast cancer risk (OR = 1.96; P = 0.006). The functional results indicated that all three variants were deleterious affecting cell survival and chromosome stability with FANCM:p.Arg658* causing more severe phenotypes. In conclusion, we confirmed that the two rare FANCM deleterious variants p.Arg658* and p.Arg1931* are risk factors for ER-negative and TNBC subtypes. Overall our data suggest that the effect of truncating variants on breast cancer risk may depend on their position in the gene. Cell sensitivity to olaparib exposure, identifies a possible therapeutic option to treat FANCM-associated tumors
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