2,178 research outputs found

    Arabian adventures

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    The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is one of the world’s most rapidly urbanising countries. Despite the recent downturn in the economy, the region continues to undergo rapid development, particularly around Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Consequently the country is host to many major civil engineering projects including the world’s tallest building, artificial offshore islands, new international airports, metro systems and high-speed rail networks

    Design and Preliminary Investigation of Crosslinked Chitosan Sponges for Tailorable Drug Delivery and Infection Control

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    Musculoskeletal wound infections can be difficult to treat, often resulting in multiple surgeries and increased costs, and can be complicated by antibiotic resistant bacteria. The aim of this study was to use genipin, alone or with poly(n-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM), to crosslink chitosan sponges for a tailorable, degradable local drug delivery system to treat known musculoskeletal pathogens. Lyophilized uncrosslinked, genipin crosslinked, and PNIPAM/ genipin crosslinked chitosan sponges were evaluated in vitro for degradation, antibiotic uptake, elution, biologic activity, and biocompatibility. Crosslinked chitosan sponges exhibited decreased degradation and increased antibiotic uptake and elution. PNIPAM/genipin crosslinked sponges had the highest and prolonged release of antibiotics. Vancomycin and amikacin eluted from all sponges was active against Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and did not have significant cytotoxic effects. These results indicate that genipin crosslinked and PNIPAM/ genipin crosslinked chitosan sponges have potential as tailorable adjunctive treatments for infection control, suitable for extended degradation and antibiotic release times

    Exploring Whites\u27 Recognition of Racial Microaggressions through an Existential Lens

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    Substantive evidence demonstrates that targets of racial discrimination (i.e., people of color) are acutely aware of racial microaggressions when they occur. Far less research has explored the interpretive experiences of perpetrators and bystanders of race-related prejudice and discrimination, individuals who are typically White. The current study sought to identify personal and situational factors that affect Whites’ recognition of racial microaggressions. The sample consisted of self-identified exclusively White/Caucasian adults (N=210) who completed questionnaires exploring Belief in a Just World (BJW), Social Dominance Orientation (SDO), and three facets of Ethnocultural Empathy (Awareness, Perspective-Taking, and Empathic Action). Participants were randomly assigned to receive one of two primes (a) mortality salience or (b) neutral, and were then presented with vignettes to evaluate. It was hypothesized that participants who experienced mortality salience prior to judging racially microaggressive vignettes would be less likely to identify the vignettes as microaggressive. Analyses revealed that there were no significant differences between the mortality salience group and control group on their recognition of racial microaggressions. However, BJW, SDO, Awareness, Perspective-Taking, and Empathic Action each independently predicted Whites’ recognition of racial microaggressions. Among these five independent variables, Awareness (awareness of contemporary racism and privilege) emerged as the predominant predictive variable in an all-inclusive model. Future directions include replication of these findings and refining a measure of microaggression recognition

    Fungal and Bacterial Infection Mitigation with Antibiotic and Antifungal Loaded Biopolymer Sponges

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    Musculoskeletal injuries are some of the most prevalent injuries in both civilian and military populations and their infections can be difficult to treat, often resulting in multiple surgeries and increased costs. In both previous and recent military operations, extremity injuries have been the most common battlefield injuries and many involve complex, open fractures. These extremity injuries are especially susceptible to multiple pathogenic, and sometimes drug resistant, bacteria and fungi. Fungal infections have recently become increasingly problematic in both military and civilian populations and have significantly higher amputation rates than those from bacterial infections. Many of these bacterial and fungal strains adhere to tissue and implanted orthopaedic hardware within wounds, forming biofilms. These problematic, often polymicrobial, infections threaten the health of the patient, but the risk also exists of spreading within hospitals to become prominent resistant infections. Local antimicrobial delivery releases high levels of antimicrobials directly to injured wound tissue, overcoming sub-bactericidal or sub-fungicidal antimicrobial levels present in the avascular wound zones. This research will determine the ability of modified chitosan sponges, buffered with sodium acetate or blended with polyethylene glycol (PEG), to act as short term adjunctive therapies to initial surgical treatment for delivering both antibiotics and/or antifungals for early abatement of infection. The objective of this work was to evaluate both types of modified sponges for in vitro and in vivo material characteristics and device functionality. In vitro analysis demonstrated both the buffered and PEG modified chitosan sponges exhibited increased degradation and functional cytocompatibility. The chitosan/PEG sponges were able to be loaded with hydrophobic antifungals and the sponges released in vitro biologically active concentrations, alone or in combination with the antibiotic vancomycin. Both types of modified sponges exhibited good biocompatibility and slight, but not complete, degradation in an in vivo rat intramuscular degradation and biocompatibility model. In an in vivo bacteria biofilm infection prevention mouse model, vancomycin loaded chitosan/PEG sponges also cleared more bacteria than the unmodified chitosan sponges. These experimental results led to the conclusion that with additional research and in vivo studies, the buffered and PEG blended chitosan sponge local delivery systems exhibit potential for use as adjunctive bacterial or fungal infection prevention therapies to standard surgical treatment of musculoskeletal wounds

    Workforce issues in nursing in Queensland: 2001 and 2004

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    [Abstract]: Aims and objectives: The aim of the study was to identify the factors impacting upon nursing work and to use the results to inform strategic planning of the Queensland Nurses Union. Background: In 2001 and 2004, a study was undertaken to gather data on the level of satisfaction of nurses with their working life. This paper reports the 2004 results on workload, skill mix, remuneration and morale. Where applicable, the results are compared to 2001 data. Methods: A questionnaire was mailed to 3000 Assistants-in-Nursing, Enrolled and Registered Nurses in October 2004. All participants were members of the Queensland Nurses Union. The results are reported in three sectors – public, private and aged care. A total of 1349 nurses responded to the survey, a response rate of 45%. Results: Nurses in the 2004 study believed: their workload was heavy; their skills and experience poorly rewarded; work stress was high; morale was perceived to be poor and, similar to 2001, deteriorating; the skill mix was often inadequate; and the majority of nurses are unable to complete their work in the time available. Nursing morale was found to be associated with autonomy, workplace equipment, workplace safety, teamwork, work stress, the physical demand of nursing work, workload, rewards for skills and experience, career prospects, status of nursing, and remuneration. Conclusion: Overall the findings of the study are consistent with those determined by the 2001 survey. Relevance to clinical practice. The findings of this study indicate the importance of factors such as workplace autonomy, teamwork, the levels of workplace stress, workload and remuneration on nursing morale. The data also indicate that workplace safety and workplace morale are linked. These findings provide information for policy makers and nurse managers on areas that need to be addressed to retain nurses within aged care, acute hospital and community nursing

    Nurses worth listening to

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    [Executive Summary]: In 2001 the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in conjunction with the Queensland Nurses’ Union (QNU) undertook a study of enrolled and registered nurse and assistant-in-nursing members. In Queensland, registered nurses (RNs) and enrolled nurses (ENs) are qualified to practice nursing and are licensed by the Queensland Nursing Council (QNC), an independent body responsible for the setting and maintaining of nursing standards in the State. Although not licensed by the QNC Assistants in Nursing (AINs) work within a nursing model of care. These workers may also have other titles such as Personal Care Assistants or Carers. Regardless of their title, they work under the direct or indirect supervision of a RN. The study was confined to nurses employed in the public sector (acute hospitals, community health), the private sector (acute hospitals and domicillary nursing) and the aged care sector (government and non-government). In 2004 a similar study was conducted. The major findings of the 2004 study were that nurses believed: • nursing is emotionally challenging and physically demanding • their workload is heavy and that their skills and experience as a professional nurse are poorly rewarded (remunerated or recognised) • work stress is high and morale is perceived to be poor and, similar to 2001, deteriorating • there are insufficient staff in their workplace and that the skill mix is inadequate • the majority of nurses are unable to complete their work to their level of professional satisfaction in the time available. While there were some changes between 2001 and 2004 (some could be seen as improvements, others deteriorations), the overwhelming impression one has, especially from the qualitative data, is of a workforce frustrated and unable to provide safe and quality care to their patients/clients within the time allocated

    Brain Responses to Smoking-Related and Emotionally Positive Pictures in Smokers and Non-Smokers

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    The effects of anticipating smoking-related pictures on a brain measure of anticipation, the contingent negative variation (CNV), were assessed in 6 habitual smokers and in 6 nonsmokers. Groups were balanced by gender. The CNV was measured using a standard 16-channel EEG cap. The participants viewed 30 repeated images that were smoking-related, positive, or neutral. Smokers generated a greater CNV during the anticipation of smoking-related pictures, compared to non-smokers. The present findings indicate that the procedures used in the present study might be useful to assess the effects of smoking cessation treatments and individual differences in the degree to which smokers are addicted to smoking and are sensitive to environmental stimuli associated with smoking

    Final Report: California Tribal Nations Transportation Planning Needs Assessment Study

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    The Tribal Transportation Planning Needs Assessment Study was a collaborative project conducted by Caltrans and the Mineta Transportation Institute, San Jose State University. The primary goal of the project was to identify the current state of transportation planning activities and partnerships within Tribal governments in California, so that Caltrans can meaningfully engage more actively with Tribal governments early in the planning process and better meet the transportation needs of Tribal communities. The study focused on the 109 federally recognized Tribal Nations in California, and collected data through a survey questionnaire. The key task undertaken by the study team was to engage and support Tribes to ensure that their opinions were heard and to provide as much or as little technical assistance on the questionnaire as they needed. The findings of the study clearly demonstrate that Tribal Nations have challenges related to technical and staff capacity, funding, lack of resources to meet transportation needs, and lack of collaborative partnerships at the local, state and federal levels, among other issues. This study identifies specific needs and provides recommendations for future engagement between Caltrans, local, state and federal agencies with the Tribal Nations
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