3,158 research outputs found

    Nursing research for a multi-ethnic society

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    Summary points • Conducting research that appropriately and sensitively pays attention to ethnicity presents an important challenge to nursing researchers and demands particular competencies. • Nursing research must recognise the multifaceted nature of ethnicity and the varied ways in which health-related experiences and outcomes may be associated with ethnicity. • Ethnic identities are complex and fluid so that using fixed ethnic categories in research requires careful consideration. • Describing and explaining differences between ethnic 'groups' demands careful attention to sampling, data generation and analysis so that partial or misleading interpretations are avoided. • Researchers should be alert to the potential for research on minority ethnic groups to do more harm than good and should seek to ensure that their research focus and approach is informed by the experiences and priorities of these groups

    Enhancing the quality of published research on ethnicity and health: is journal guidance feasible and useful?

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    Researching ethnicity and health presents significant ethical, conceptual and methodological challenges. While the potential contribution of research evidence to tackling ethnic inequalities in health is recognised, there are widespread concerns regarding the ethical and scientific rigour of much of this research and its potential to do more harm than good. The introduction of guidance documents at critical points in the research cycle - including within the peer-review publication process - might be one way to enhance the quality of such research. This article reports the findings from the piloting of a guidance checklist within an international journal. The checklist was positively received by authors and reviewers, the majority of whom reported it to be comprehensible, relevant and potentially useful in improving the quality of published research. However, participation in the pilot was poor, suggesting that the impact of such a checklist would be very limited unless it was perceived to be an aid to authors and reviewers, rather than an additional burden, and was strongly promoted by journal editors

    Duty to Warn and Protect

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    Professional counselors, spurred by the courts, have a dual ethical and legal responsibility to protect others from potentially dangerous clients, to protect clients from being harmed by others, and to protect clients from themselves. The delicate balance between confidentiality and the duty to warn and protect others must be handled on a case-by-case basis. The majority of individual state laws require counselors to breach confidentiality in order to warn and protect someone who is in danger. All states and U.S. jurisdictions now have mandatory reporting statutes for suspected physical, sexual, or emotional child abuse or neglect. There are also several states with mandatory reporting statutes for elder abuse or abuse of other persons presumed to have limited ability to care for themselves

    Might temporal logic improve the specification of directed acyclic graphs (DAGs)?

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    Temporality-driven covariate classification had limited impact on: the specification of directed acyclic graphs (DAGs) by 85 novice analysts (medical undergraduates); or the risk of bias in DAG-informed multivariable models designed to generate causal inference from observational data. Only 71 students (83.5%) managed to complete the ‘Temporality-driven Covariate Classification’ task, and fewer still completed the ‘DAG Specification’ task (77.6%) or both tasks in succession (68.2%). Most students who completed the first task misclassified at least one covariate (84.5%), and misclassification rates were even higher amongst students who specified a DAG (92.4%). Nonetheless, across the 512 and 517 covariates considered by each of these tasks, ‘confounders’ were far less likely to be misclassified (11/252, 4.4%; and 8/261, 3.1%) than ‘mediators’ (70/123, 56.9%; and 56/115, 48.7%) or ‘competing exposures (93/137, 67.9%; and 86/138, 62.3%), respectively. Since estimates of total causal effects are biased in multivariable models that: fail to adjust ‘confounders’; or adjust for ‘mediators’ misclassified as ‘confounders’ or ‘competing exposures’, a substantial proportion of any models informed by the present study’s DAGs would have generated biased estimates of total causal effects (50/66, 76.8%); and this would have only been slightly lower for models informed by temporality-driven covariate classification alone (47/71, 66.2%)

    Development of a GPS/GPRS prompted-recall solution for longitudinal driving behaviour studies

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    This paper details the development of a GPS/GPRS data collection solution for a longitudinal (twelve week) study of driving behaviour in Sydney, investigating behavioural responses to variable rate charging. The study calls for data to be regularly downloaded to check the quality of data as it is being collected and provide the basis for a web-based prompted recall (PR) survey in which participants can view their trips, confirm details and provide information on who was driving, number of passengers and trip purpose. Following details of the technological setup, we detail the data processing issues involved and the development of the PR survey. Pilot testing of the approach on thirty motorists demonstrates that contrary to popular belief, data of this nature can be collected for several weeks with little respondent burden at high levels of accuracy

    Thermoregulation and energy metabolism of the pouched mouse Saccostomus campestris Peters from southern Africa

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    Thermoregulation and energy metabolism of the pouched mouse (Saccostomus campestris) was studied to establish how this species copes with different climatic conditions throughout its broad distribution in southern Africa. Nine burrows excavated at four localities in South Africa each contained a single nesting chamber, at least 200mm below ground, in which variation in temperature was minimal. Not all of the burrows contained bedding material or caches of food and there was no direct effect of photoperiod, temperature or locality on nest-building or food-hoarding behaviour in captivity which indicated that these activities do not respond to seasonal or geographical changes in climate. However, males and females were observed collecting seeds throughout the year in the wild, presumably to minimise the amount of time spent foraging outside their burrows where thermoregulatory costs and predation risks are higher. There was a multiple correlation between body size and a variety of climatic factors which was largely due to a positive correlation with rainfall. These geographical differences in body size appeared to be heritable and might represent an adaptation to reduce the energy requirements of pouched mice living in arid/semi-arid environments where food availability is low. Although there were significant differences in energy metabolism between pouched mice from nine localities, their resting metabolism was not correlated to local climatic conditions, possibly because they do not experience geographical variation in temperature when they are at rest inside their nests. Nevertheless, they do experience some seasonal and geographical differences in ambient temperatures because they are active above ground at night when cold temperatures necessitate an increase in thermoregulatory heat production. This might explain why pouched mice display seasonal changes in heat production while animals from cooler localities exhibit a higher capacity for heat production than those from warmer areas. The significance of a correlation between locality temperature and the duration of spontaneous daily torpor remains unclear, because torpor was only observed at temperatures below those usually recorded within their burrows. It therefore appears that pouched mice are able to survive under a wide variety of climatic conditions because their semi-fossorial lifestyle allows them to avoid most unfavourable temperatures. At the same time they also display ecotypic differences in body size, heat production and torpor which help them cope with geographical variation in food availability and nocturnal temperatures which they cannot escape.Thesis (PhD)--University of Pretoria, 1992.Zoology and EntomologyPhDUnrestricte

    Economic vulnerability and poor service delivery made it more difficult for shack-dwellers to comply with COVID-19 restrictions.

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    In South Africa, demand for housing close to viable/sustained sources of employment has far outstripped supply; and the size of the population living in temporary structures/shacks (and in poorly serviced informal settlements) has continued to increase. While such dwellings and settlements pose a number of established risks to the health of their residents, the present study aimed to explore whether they might also undermine the potential impact of regulations intended to safeguard public health, such as the stringent lockdown restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 in 2020 and 2021. Using a representative sample of 1381 South African households surveyed in May–June 2021, the present study found that respondents in temporary structures/shacks were more likely to report non-compliance (or difficulty in complying) with lockdown restrictions when compared to those living in traditional/formal houses/flats/rooms/hostels (OR: 1.61; 95% CI: 1.06, 2.45). However, this finding was substantially attenuated and lost precision following adjustment for preceding socio-demographic and economic determinants of housing quality (adjusted OR: 1.20; 95% CI: 0.78, 1.87). Instead, respondents were far more likely to report non-compliance (or difficulty in complying) with COVID-19 lockdown restrictions if their dwellings lacked private/indoor toilet facilities (adjusted OR: 1.56; 95% CI: 1.08, 2.22) or if they were ‘Black/African’, young, poorly educated and under-employed (regardless of their socio-economic position, or whether they resided in temporary structures/shacks, respectively). Restrictions imposed to safeguard public health need to be more sensitively designed to accommodate the critical roles that poverty and inadequate service delivery play in limiting the ability of residents living in temporary structures/shacks and inadequately serviced dwellings/settlements to comply.Significance:• South Africans living in temporary structures/shacks are more likely to be poorly educated and underemployed, with fewer assets and limited access to basic household services.• Poverty and inadequate service delivery were more important determinants of compliance with COVID-19 restrictions than housing quality.• In the absence of improvements in economic circumstances and the delivery of basic household services, restrictions imposed to safeguard public health need to be more sensitively designed to take account of the structural barriers to compliance experienced by households where poverty and/or inadequate service delivery limit their ability to stay at home; maintain hygiene; and/or practise social distancing

    Observations on the Ice-Breaking and Ice Navigation Behavior of Migrating Bowhead Whales (Balaena Mysticetus) near Point Barrow, Alaska, Spring 1985

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    During a four-day period from 28 April to 1 May 1985, we observed bowhead whales breaking up through sea ice in order to breathe. Our observations were made from grounded sea ice approximately 10 km northeast of Point Barrow, Alaska, during the spring bowhead migration (14 April to 10 June). From acoustic and visual data, it was estimated that 665 whales passed the observation perches during this four-day period. However, only 117(17%) whales were seen. The remaining whales either passed underneath the ice or were beyond the range of the visual observers. Whales used their heads, in the area of the blowholes, to push up against the ice (18 cm maximum thickness) and fracture it, creating a hummock of ice in which they were able to respire. Often during such breathing episodes, even at distances of only several hundred meters, the animal was not seen but its blows were clearly audible to the visual observers. Acoustic tracking of whales showed they avoided a large multi-year ice floe seaward of the observation perch. We hypothesize that bowheads use their calls to assess the thickness of ice in their migratory path. In assessing their calls, we suggest the whales can avoid areas where the ice is too thick to break through (to breath) and/or too thick to provide clearance for them to swim beneath.Key words: Balaena mysticetus, Point Barrow, bowhead whale, ice breaking, behavior, sea ice, singer, acoustic, anatomy, censusMots clés: Balaena mysticetus, Point Barrow, baleine franche, casser la glace, comportement, glace de mer, chanteuse, acoustique, anatomie, dénombremen

    My favorite unreliable source? Information sharing and acquisition through informal networks

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    Informal information networks are the personal connections of friends, family and colleagues that people use to help them find information. Recently, a great deal of attention has been paid to social network sites, and other social media, as a key source of information and misinformation in contemporary society. This panel will probe deeper, to investigate the personal connections that underpin and lie behind the social connections visible on social network sites. This issue is of increasing importance as more of our everyday lives are moved online. We will debate what we actually know, and do not know, about how people find information through others, both on‐ and off‐line. From the panel we hope to create a network of scholars interested in creating a research agenda to make informal networks a focus of study going forward.Peer Reviewedhttp://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/163474/2/pra2294.pdfhttp://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/163474/1/pra2294_am.pd

    Structural and Attitudinal Barriers to Bicycle Ownership and Cycle-Based Transport in Gauteng, South Africa

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    Policies that aim to facilitate and promote non-motorised transport (NMT), and in particular cycling, have been developed by many high-income countries facing increasingly congested roads and saturated public transport systems. Such policies are also emerging in many low- and middle-income settings where high rates of urbanisation have led to similar problems with motorised transport. The aim of the present study was to better understand the potential structural and attitudinal barriers to cycle-based transport in one such context: South Africa’s Gauteng Province, the industrial powerhouse of sub-Saharan Africa that has recently made a firm commitment to NMT. The study focussed on demographic and socioeconomic variation in bicycle and car ownership, and related this to: (1) the reported use of motorised and non-motorised transport (both private and public); and (2) perceived ‘problems’ with cycling. The analyses drew on interviews with key respondents from n = 27,490 households conducted in 2013 as part of the third Quality of Life survey undertaken by the Gauteng City Regional Observatory. The survey contained items on three outcomes of interest: household vehicle ownership (bicycles and cars); modes of transport used for the “trips” most often made; and respondents’ “single biggest problem with… cycling”. Respondent- and household-level demographic and socioeconomic determinants of these outcomes were examined using descriptive and multivariable statistical analyses, the latter after adjustment for measured potential confounders identified using a theoretical causal path diagram (in the form of a directed acyclic graph). Of the n = 26,469 households providing complete data on all of the variables examined in the present study, only n = 8722 (32.9%) owned a car and fewer still (n = 2244; 8.4%) owned a bicycle. The ownership of these assets was commonest amongst wealthier, economically active households; and those that owned a car had over five times the odds of also owning a bicycle, even after adjustment for potential confounding (OR 5.17; 95% CI 4.58, 5.85). Moreover, of household respondents who reported making ‘trips’ during the preceding month (n = 18,209), over two-thirds of those whose households owned a car (70.1%) reported private car-based transport for such trips, while only 3.2% of those owning a bicycle reported cycling. Amongst the specific responses given to the item requesting the “single biggest problem with… cycling” by far the commonest was “Don’t know how to cycle” (32.2%), less than half as many citing “Vehicle accident risk” (15.9%), and fewer still: “Destination is too far” (13.9%); “Crime” (10.3%); “Too much effort” (9.2%); or “Lack of good paths” (4.6%). While the first of these reasons was commonest amongst poorer households, concerns about risk and effort were both most common amongst better educated, economically active and wealthier/better serviced households. In contrast, concerns over (cycle) paths were only common amongst those owning bicycles. The low prevalence of household bicycle ownership, and the disproportionate number of households owning bicycles that also owned cars, might explain the very small proportion of the ‘the trips most often made’ that involved cycle-based transport (0.3%), and the preferential use of cars amongst households owning both bicycles and cars. Low levels of bicycle ownership might also explain why so many respondents cited “Don’t know how” as the “single biggest problem with… cycling”; although risk and effort were also substantial concerns (presumably for many who did, and some who did not, know how to cycle); the lack of suitable cycle lanes being only primarily a concern for those who actually owned bicycles. Structural and attitudinal barriers to cycle-based transport limit the use of cycle-based transport in Gauteng, not only amongst the vast majority of household respondents who lack the means to cycle (and the means to learn how), but also amongst those dissuaded from learning to cycle, purchasing a bicycle and/or using a bicycle they own by: the risks and effort involved; the lack of suitable cycle paths; and/or because they also own a car and prefer to drive than cycle