308 research outputs found

    Local Government, local development and citizen participation

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    Traditionally the local government system had engaged citizens only in limited passive participation. It was no coincidence that the local development structures put in place to counteract the inadequacies in the local government system introduced different and innovative, opportunities for citizen participation. The scope for engagement in the processes of local government and governance has been significantly extended through a number of pilot initiatives as detailed in the preceding sections and especially through the partnership bodies. Most recently the establishment of County/City Development Boards has been an attempt to integrate local government and local development structures and to enhance participatory democracy. This paper looks at citizen participation in the local development/local government process and, through a series of case studies, puts formward a 10 point charter for citizen participation

    Copy number variation of plasmepsins 2 and 3 genes in Plasmodium falciparum isolates and implication for dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine resistance in Ghana

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    Background: In 2008, dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine and artemether-lumefantrine were introduced to supplement artesunate-amodiaquine for the treatment of uncomplicated malaria in Ghana. Drug pressure over the years enhances the development of parasite resistance to drugs. The World Health Organization recommends the detection of copy number variations of plasmepsins 2 (PfPm2) and plasmepsins 3 (PfPm3) genes linked to dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine resistance in treatment efficacy studies.Objective: This study investigated the copy number variations of PfPm2 and PfPm3 genes in the malaria parasite population in Ghana.Methods: Overall, 313 blood samples from children ≤ 9 years presenting with uncomplicated malaria at three sentinel sites used for monitoring antimalarial drug efficacy and resistance in Ghana were used for genetic investigations. The samples were collected in the malaria transmission seasons of 2015 and 2016. Malaria parasite DNA extraction from the blood samples followed by real-time quantitative PCR was used to determine the copy number of the PfPm2 and PfPm3 genes. The gene copy number was calculated by the relative expression formula 2-ΔΔCt for quantification, where ΔΔ is the relative delta-delta, and Ct is the cycle threshold. ΔΔCt was calculated as (Ctβ-tubulin − Ctpfpm2/3) - (Ctβ-tubulin cal − Ctpfpm2/3 cal), where cal is the calibration control of genomic 3D7 DNA with one copy of both the β-tubulin endogenous control and pfpm2 and pfpm3. A change in Ct (ΔCt = Ct PfPm2/3 - Ct Pfβ-tubulin) where is the difference in Ct values for the target gene of interest PfPm2 and PfPm3 and the reference gene Pfβ-tubulin. Statistical significance was defined as p < 0.05.Results: Of the parasites analyzed, 79.2% (n = 228/288) and 80.5% (n = 227/282) had one gene copy for PfPm2 and PfPm3, respectively. For PfPm2, 14.9% (n = 43/288), 3.8% (n = 11/288), and 2.1% (n = 6/288) of the isolates had copy numbers 2, 3 and 4 respectively. For PfPm3, gene copies of 2, 3 and 4 were observed in 16.3% (n = 46/282), 2.1% (n = 6/282), and 1.1% (n = 3/282) of isolates. Analysis of the copy number variation across the three study sites in Cape-Coast, Begoro, and the Navrongo areas showed no significant difference for PfPm2 (p = 0.93) and PfPm3 (p = 0.94) genes.Conclusion: After over a decade of the use of dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine, the mutations associated with resistance to the drug have been observed in Ghanaian P. falciparum isolates. This serves as baseline data for further monitoring of this molecular marker extensively as part of ongoing surveillance of antimalarial drug efficacy studies in Ghana

    Recognition of Depression in Older Medical Inpatients

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    BACKGROUND: Studies of recognition of depression in older (aged 65 or more) medical inpatients show low rates of recognition of depression by attending physicians. However, few studies have compared different measures of recognition of depression. OBJECTIVES: (1) To compare the validity of four indicators of recognition of depression and a global measure of recognition against a diagnosis of depression and (2) to explore the effect of patient characteristics on recognition of depression. METHODS: In a cohort of 264 medical inpatients 65 years and older (115 with major or minor depression, 78 with no depression), sensitivities, specificities, and diagnostic odds ratios (DOR) of 4 indicators of recognition (symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and referral) and a global measure of recognition (any of the 4 indicators) were calculated. The associations between patient characteristics (age, sex, history of depression, antidepressant use before admission, severity of depression, comorbidity, duration of hospitalization, disability, and hospital of admission) and recognition were explored using multiple logistic regression. RESULTS: Less than half of the depressed patients were recognized. The indicator with the highest sensitivity was treatment (27.8%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 20.0–37.0), whereas the indicator with the best specificity was diagnosis (96.6%, 95% CI 91.9–98.7). The unadjusted DOR of global recognition was 2.6 (95% CI 1.5, 4.4). Less comorbidity, more severe depression symptoms, a history of depression, longer hospital stay, and antidepressant use before admission were significantly associated with better global recognition. CONCLUSION: Recognition of depression in elderly medical inpatients depends upon the indicator of recognition used

    Criteria for the selective use of chest computed tomography in blunt trauma patients

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    Item does not contain fulltextPURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to derive parameters that predict which high-energy blunt trauma patients should undergo computed tomography (CT) for detection of chest injury. METHODS: This observational study prospectively included consecutive patients (>or=16 years old) who underwent multidetector CT of the chest after a high-energy mechanism of blunt trauma in one trauma centre. RESULTS: We included 1,047 patients (median age, 37; 70% male), of whom 508 had chest injuries identified by CT. Using logistic regression, we identified nine predictors of chest injury presence on CT (age >or=55 years, abnormal chest physical examination, altered sensorium, abnormal thoracic spine physical examination, abnormal chest conventional radiography (CR), abnormal thoracic spine CR, abnormal pelvic CR or abdominal ultrasound, base excess or=1 positive predictors, 484 had injury on CT (95% of all 508 patients with injury). Of all 192 patients with no positive predictor, 24 (13%) had chest injury, of whom 4 (2%) had injuries that were considered clinically relevant. CONCLUSION: Omission of CT in patients without any positive predictor could reduce imaging frequency by 18%, while most clinically relevant chest injuries remain adequately detected.1 april 201

    Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics of re-presentation to an Australian inner-city emergency department: implications for service delivery

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    BACKGROUND: People who have complex health care needs frequently access emergency departments for treatment of acute illness and injury. In particular, evidence suggests that those who are homeless, or suffer mental illness, or have a history of substance misuse, are often repeat users of emergency departments. The aim of this study was to describe the socio-demographic and clinical characteristics of emergency department re-presentations. Re-presentation was defined as a return visit to the same emergency department within 28 days of discharge from hospital. METHODS: A retrospective cohort study was conducted of emergency department presentations occurring over a 24-month period to an Australian inner-city hospital. Characteristics were examined for their influence on the binary outcome of re-presentation within 28 days of discharge using logistic regression with the variable patient fitted as a random effect. RESULTS: From 64,147 presentations to the emergency department the re-presentation rate was 18.0% (n = 11,559) of visits and 14.4% (5,894/40,942) of all patients. Median time to re-presentation was 6 days, with more than half occurring within one week of discharge (60.8%; n = 6,873), and more than three-quarters within two weeks (80.9%; n = 9,151). The odds of re-presentation increased three-fold for people who were homeless compared to those living in stable accommodation (adjusted OR 3.09; 95% CI, 2.83 to 3.36). Similarly, the odds of re-presentation were significantly higher for patients receiving a government pension compared to those who did not (adjusted OR 1.73; 95% CI, 1.63 to 1.84), patients who left part-way through treatment compared to those who completed treatment and were discharged home (adjusted OR 1.64; 95% CI, 1.36 to 1.99), and those discharged to a residential-care facility compared to those who were discharged home (adjusted OR 1.46: 95% CI, 1.03 to 2.06). CONCLUSION: Emergency department re-presentation rates cluster around one week after discharge and rapidly decrease thereafter. Housing status and being a recipient of a government pension are the most significant risk factors. Early identification and appropriate referrals for those patients who are at risk of emergency department re-presentation will assist in the development of targeted strategies to improve health service delivery to this vulnerable group

    Bacteria and Their Antibiotic Resistance Profiles in Ambient Air in Accra, Ghana, February 2020: A Cross-Sectional Study

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    Inappropriate use of antibiotics has led to the presence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in ambient air. There is no published information about the presence and resistance profiles of bacteria in ambient air in Ghana. We evaluated the presence and antibiotic resistance profiles of selected bacterial, environmental and meteorological characteristics and airborne bacterial counts in 12 active air quality monitoring sites (seven roadside, two industrial and three residential) in Accra in February 2020. Roadside sites had the highest median temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and PM10 concentrations, and median airborne bacterial counts in roadside sites (115,000 CFU/m3) were higher compared with industrial (35,150 CFU/m3) and residential sites (1210 CFU/m3). Bacillus species were isolated in all samples and none were antibiotic resistant. There were, however, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas species, non-hemolytic Streptococci, Coliforms and Staphylococci species, of which six (50%) showed mono-resistance or multidrug resistance to four antibiotics (penicillin, ampicillin, ciprofloxacin and ceftriaxone). There was a positive correlation between PM10 concentrations and airborne bacterial counts (rs = 0.72), but no correlations were found between PM10 concentrations and the pathogenic bacteria nor their antibiotic resistance. We call for the expansion of surveillance of ambient air to other cities of Ghana to obtain nationally representative information