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Healthcare, Volume 5, Issue 3 (September 2017)

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Open AccessCommunication Progestin Intrauterine Devices and Metformin: Endometrial Hyperplasia and Early Stage Endometrial Cancer Medical Management
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 30; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030030
Received: 4 June 2017 / Revised: 1 July 2017 / Accepted: 6 July 2017 / Published: 8 July 2017
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Abstract
Globally, endometrial cancer is the sixth leading cause of female cancer-related deaths. Non-atypical endometrial hyperplasia (EH), has a lifetime progression rate to endometrial cancer ranging from less than 5%, if simple without atypia, to 40%, if complex with atypia. Site specific, long-acting intrauterine
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Globally, endometrial cancer is the sixth leading cause of female cancer-related deaths. Non-atypical endometrial hyperplasia (EH), has a lifetime progression rate to endometrial cancer ranging from less than 5%, if simple without atypia, to 40%, if complex with atypia. Site specific, long-acting intrauterine devices (IUDs) provide fertility sparing, progestin-based EH medical management. It is unclear which IUD is most beneficial, or if progesterone sensitizing metformin offers improved outcomes. For resolution, PubMed searches for “Mirena” or “Metformin,” “treatment,” “endometrial hyperplasia,” or “stage 1 endometrial cancer,” were performed, yielding 33 articles. Of these, 19 articles were included. The 60 mg high-dose frameless IUD/20 mcg levonorgestrel has achieved sustained regression of Grade 3 endometrial intraepithelial neoplasia for 14 years. Case series on early stage endometrial cancer (EC) treatment with IUDs have 75% or greater regression rates. For simple through complex EH with atypia, the 52 mg-IUD/10–20 mcg-LNG-14t has achieved 100% complete regression in 6-months. Clearly, IUDs have an outcome advantage over oral progestins. However, studies on metformin for EH, and of progestins or metformin for early stage EC management are underpowered, with inadequate dose ranges to achieve significant differences in, or optimal outcomes for, the treatment modalities. Therefore, outcomes from the feMMe trial for the 52 mg-IUD/10–20 mcg-LNG-14t and metformin will fill a gap in the literature. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Integrating Mental and Physical Health Care for Low-Income Americans: Assessing a Federal Program’s Initial Impact on Access and Cost
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 32; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030032
Received: 6 June 2017 / Revised: 7 July 2017 / Accepted: 10 July 2017 / Published: 12 July 2017
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Abstract
Individuals with mental health disorders often die decades earlier than the average person, and low-income individuals disproportionately experience limited access to necessary services. In 2014, the U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) leveraged Affordable Care Act funds to address these challenges through
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Individuals with mental health disorders often die decades earlier than the average person, and low-income individuals disproportionately experience limited access to necessary services. In 2014, the U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) leveraged Affordable Care Act funds to address these challenges through behavioral health integration. The objective of this study is to assess the US$55 million program’s first-year impact on access and cost. This analysis uses multivariable difference-in-difference regression models to estimate changes in outcomes between the original 219 Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Behavioral Health Integration grantees and two comparison groups. The primary outcome variables are annual depression screening rate, percentage of mental health and substance use patients served, and per capita cost. The results change when comparing the Behavioral Health Integration (BHI) grantees to a propensity score-matched comparison group versus comparing the grantees to the full population of health centers. After one year of implementation, the grant program appeared ineffective as measured by this study’s outcomes, though costs did not significantly rise because of the program. This study has limitations that must be discussed, including non-randomized study design, FQHC data measurement, and BHI program design consequences. Time will tell if FQHC-based behavioral–physical health care integration will improve access among low-income, medically-underserved populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Population Health Management)
Open AccessArticle Lateral Violence in Nursing Survey: Instrument Development and Validation
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 33; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030033
Received: 1 June 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 8 July 2017 / Published: 19 July 2017
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Abstract
An examination of the psychometric properties of the Lateral Violence in Nursing Survey (LVNS), an instrument previously developed to measure the perceived incidence and severity of lateral violence (LV) in the nursing workplace, was carried out. Conceptual clustering and principal components analysis were
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An examination of the psychometric properties of the Lateral Violence in Nursing Survey (LVNS), an instrument previously developed to measure the perceived incidence and severity of lateral violence (LV) in the nursing workplace, was carried out. Conceptual clustering and principal components analysis were used with survey responses from 663 registered nurses and ancillary nursing staff in a southeastern tertiary care medical center. Where appropriate, Cronbach’s alpha (α) evaluated internal consistency. The prevalence/severity of lateral violence items constitute two distinct subscales (LV by self and others) with Cronbach’s alpha of 0.74 and 0.86, respectively. The items asking about potential causes of LV are unidimensional and internally consistent (alpha = 0.77) but there is no conceptually coherent theme underlying the various causes. Respondents rating a potential LV cause as “major” scored higher on both prevalence/severity subscales than those rating it a “minor” cause or not a cause. Subsets of items on the LVNS are internally reliable, supporting construct validity. Revisions of the original LVNS instrument will improve its use in future work. Full article
Open AccessArticle Pediatric Respiratory Support Technology and Practices: A Global Survey
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 34; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030034
Received: 24 May 2017 / Revised: 7 July 2017 / Accepted: 13 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
Objective: This global survey aimed to assess the current respiratory support capabilities for children with hypoxemia and respiratory failure in different economic settings. Methods: An online, anonymous survey of medical providers with experience in managing pediatric acute respiratory illness was distributed electronically to
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Objective: This global survey aimed to assess the current respiratory support capabilities for children with hypoxemia and respiratory failure in different economic settings. Methods: An online, anonymous survey of medical providers with experience in managing pediatric acute respiratory illness was distributed electronically to members of the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Society, and other critical care websites for 3 months. Results: The survey was completed by 295 participants from 64 countries, including 28 High-Income (HIC) and 36 Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMIC). Most respondents (≥84%) worked in urban tertiary care centers. For managing acute respiratory failure, endotracheal intubation with mechanical ventilation was the most commonly reported form of respiratory support (≥94% in LMIC and HIC). Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) was the most commonly reported form of non-invasive positive pressure support (≥86% in LMIC and HIC). Bubble-CPAP was used by 36% HIC and 39% LMIC participants. ECMO for acute respiratory failure was reported by 45% of HIC participants, compared to 34% of LMIC. Oxygen, air, gas humidifiers, breathing circuits, patient interfaces, and oxygen saturation monitoring appear widely available. Reported ICU patient to health care provider ratios were higher in LMIC compared to HIC. The frequency of respiratory assessments was hourly in HIC, compared to every 2–4 h in LMIC. Conclusions: This survey indicates many apparent similarities in the presence of respiratory support systems in urban care centers globally, but system quality, quantity, and functionality were not established by this survey. LMIC ICUs appear to have higher patient to medical staff ratios, with decreased patient monitoring frequencies, suggesting patient safety should be a focus during the introduction of new respiratory support devices and practices. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Student Perceptions and Acceptance of Mobile Technology in an Undergraduate Nursing Program
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 35; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030035
Received: 3 June 2017 / Revised: 13 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
Mobile technology allows healthcare students to access current evidence-based resources. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the student experience of implementing point-of-care (POC) smartphone applications in a first-semester undergraduate nursing program. Teaching methods included using case studies in the laboratory to
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Mobile technology allows healthcare students to access current evidence-based resources. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the student experience of implementing point-of-care (POC) smartphone applications in a first-semester undergraduate nursing program. Teaching methods included using case studies in the laboratory to familiarize students with the apps. At community screening sites, evidence-based guidelines were referenced when students discussed screening results with patients. Surveys were administered prior to implementing this innovation and after the students utilized the apps in direct patient interactions. Survey results were analyzed to evaluate student perceptions and acceptance of mobile technology. Students felt that healthcare smartphone apps were a helpful and convenient way to obtain evidence-based clinical information pertinent to direct care settings. Over 90% of students planned to continue using healthcare smartphone apps. In conclusion, healthcare smartphone apps are a way for students to become comfortable accessing evidence-based clinical resources. It is important to encourage students to use these resources early in the curriculum. Community screenings are an independent health promotion activity which assists in the attainment of health equity and fosters nursing leadership. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Population Health Management)
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Open AccessArticle Healtheatre: Drama and Medicine in Concert
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 37; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030037
Received: 28 June 2017 / Revised: 20 July 2017 / Accepted: 24 July 2017 / Published: 28 July 2017
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Abstract
Introduction: Clinical practice includes expressing empathy and understanding key features of humanity, such as mortality and illness. The Stanislavski “System” of actor training negotiates a journey from the unconscious via feeling, will and intellect to a proposed supertask. This study explored these areas
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Introduction: Clinical practice includes expressing empathy and understanding key features of humanity, such as mortality and illness. The Stanislavski “System” of actor training negotiates a journey from the unconscious via feeling, will and intellect to a proposed supertask. This study explored these areas during collaborative learning amongst undergraduate medical and drama students. Materials and Methods: Each of two interactive sessions involved teams of final year medical students rotating through challenging simulated clinical scenarios, enacted by undergraduate drama students, deploying key techniques from the Stanslavski system of actor training. Team assessment of performance was via a ratified global scoring system and dynamic debriefing techniques. Results: Medical students reported an enhanced immersive experience within simulated clinical scenarios. Drama students reported increased challenge and immersion within their roles. Medical faculty and standardised patients reported positive utility and value for the approach. Clinical team assessment scores increased by 47% (p < 0.05) with this intervention. Discussion: Qualitative and quantitative data demonstrated the merit and utility of such interdisciplinary learning. All students and faculty appreciated the value of the activity and described enhanced learning. Collaborative dynamic debriefing allowed for a continuation of the immersive experience and allowed for an exploration of arenas such as empathy. Conclusions: The deployment of drama students trained in the Stanislavski system significantly enriched medical and drama student experience and performance. Team assessment scores further demonstrated the effectiveness of this approach. Feedback from students, faculty and standardised patients was uniformly positive. The approach facilitated exploration of empathy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
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Open AccessArticle A Population-Based, Cross-Sectional Study Examining Health Services Deficits of US Veterans Using 2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Data: Is Rural Residency an Independent Risk Factor after Controlling for Multiple Covariates?
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 39; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030039
Received: 16 June 2017 / Revised: 21 July 2017 / Accepted: 26 July 2017 / Published: 31 July 2017
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Abstract
Introduction: In 2014, it was reported that there was a backlog of an estimated 1.2 million claims nationwide at the United States Veterans Administration (VA). This ecological occurrence opened up a space for asking and answering some important questions about health service deficits
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Introduction: In 2014, it was reported that there was a backlog of an estimated 1.2 million claims nationwide at the United States Veterans Administration (VA). This ecological occurrence opened up a space for asking and answering some important questions about health service deficits (HSD) of US veterans, which is the focus of the research reported on in this paper. The purpose of this study was to ascertain if rural veterans were more likely to experience HSDs than urban military veterans after controlling for a number of covariates. Methods: Bivariate and multivariate data analysis strategies were used to examine 2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey data. HSD was the dependent variable. Results: Two multivariate models were tested. The first logistic regression analysis yielded that rural veterans had higher odds of having at least one HSD. The second yielded that rural US veterans in 2014 who had higher odds of having at least one HSD were: 18–64 years of age, unemployed seeking employment, living in households with annual incomes lower than $75,000, without a university degree, not part of a married or unmarried couple, a current smoker, and/or a binge drinker within the last 30 days. Conclusions: The study described here fills identified epidemiological gaps in our knowledge regarding rural US military veterans and HSDs. The findings are not only interesting but important, and should be used to inform interventions to reduce HSDs for rural veterans. Full article
Open AccessArticle Chronic Respiratory Disorders and Their Treatment among Older People with Intellectual Disability and/or Autism Spectrum Disorder in Comparison with the General Population
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 40; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030040
Received: 27 June 2017 / Revised: 25 July 2017 / Accepted: 27 July 2017 / Published: 1 August 2017
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Abstract
Respiratory disorders are common among people with intellectual disabilities (ID). However, few studies have investigated these disorders among older people with ID. We identified 7936 people, aged 55+ years, with ID and a reference cohort from the general population. Data on diagnoses of
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Respiratory disorders are common among people with intellectual disabilities (ID). However, few studies have investigated these disorders among older people with ID. We identified 7936 people, aged 55+ years, with ID and a reference cohort from the general population. Data on diagnoses of chronic respiratory disorders, with a focus on asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), were collected, as was information on health care visits due to such disorders. We also added data on the prescription of drugs for obstructive airway diseases. Whereas the risk of having at least one diagnosis of asthma during the study period was similar in the two cohorts, people with ID were less likely than the general population to have been diagnosed with COPD. The same was found for health care visits due to asthma and COPD, respectively. The patterns of drug prescription were similar among people with ID and the general population, with the exception of adrenergics for systemic use, which were more commonly prescribed to people with ID. Thus, older people with ID do not seem to have an increased risk of asthma or COPD. Moreover, the indications are that when diagnosed with any of these disorders, they receive treatment adapted to their particular needs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing with Chronic Disease and Disability)
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Open AccessArticle Using Jazz as a Metaphor to Teach Improvisational Communication Skills
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 41; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030041
Received: 16 May 2017 / Revised: 28 July 2017 / Accepted: 31 July 2017 / Published: 4 August 2017
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Abstract
Metaphor helps humans understand complex concepts by “mapping” them onto accessible concepts. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of using jazz as a metaphor to teach senior medical students improvisational communication skills, and to understand student learning experiences. The
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Metaphor helps humans understand complex concepts by “mapping” them onto accessible concepts. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of using jazz as a metaphor to teach senior medical students improvisational communication skills, and to understand student learning experiences. The authors designed a month-long course that used jazz to teach improvisational communication. A sample of fourth-year medical students (N = 30) completed the course between 2011 and 2014. Evaluation consisted of quantitative and qualitative data collected pre- and post-course, with comparison to a concurrent control group on some measures. Measures included: (a) Student self-reports of knowledge and ability performing communicative tasks; (b) blinded standardized patient assessment of students’ adaptability and quality of listening; and (c) qualitative course evaluation data and open-ended interviews with course students. Compared to control students, course students demonstrated statistically significant and educationally meaningful gains in adaptability and listening behaviors. Students’ course experiences suggested that the jazz components led to high engagement and creativity, and provided a model to guide application of improvisational concepts to their own communication behaviors. Metaphor proved to be a powerful tool in this study, partly through enabling increased reflection and decreased resistance to behaviors that, on the surface, tended to run counter to generally accepted norms. The use of jazz as a metaphor to teach improvisational communication warrants further refinement and investigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
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Open AccessArticle Ability to Work among Patients with ESKD: Relevance of Quality Care Metrics
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 42; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030042
Received: 16 June 2017 / Revised: 28 July 2017 / Accepted: 2 August 2017 / Published: 7 August 2017
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Abstract
Enabling patient ability to work was a key rationale for enacting the United States (US) Medicare program that provides financial entitlement to renal replacement therapy for persons with end-stage kidney disease (ESKD). However, fewer than half of working-age individuals in the US report
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Enabling patient ability to work was a key rationale for enacting the United States (US) Medicare program that provides financial entitlement to renal replacement therapy for persons with end-stage kidney disease (ESKD). However, fewer than half of working-age individuals in the US report the ability to work after starting maintenance hemodialysis (HD). Quality improvement is a well-established objective in oversight of the dialysis program, but a more patient-centered quality assessment approach is increasingly advocated. The ESKD Quality Incentive Program (QIP) initiated in 2012 emphasizes clinical performance indicators, but a newly-added measure requires the monitoring of patient depression—an issue that is important for work ability and employment. We investigated depression scores and four dialysis-specific QIP measures in relation to work ability reported by a multi-clinic cohort of 528 working-age maintenance HD patients. The prevalence of elevated depression scores was substantially higher among patients who said they were not able to work, while only one of the four dialysis-specific clinical measures differed for patients able/not able to work. Ability to work may be among patients’ top priorities. As the parameters of quality assessment continue to evolve, increased attention to patient priorities might facilitate work ability and employment outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Socio-Economic Impact of End Stage Kidney Disease)
Open AccessArticle Psychotherapy Training on Psychological Mindedness in a Japanese Nurse Population: Effects and Personality Correlates
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 43; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030043
Received: 17 June 2017 / Revised: 28 July 2017 / Accepted: 31 July 2017 / Published: 8 August 2017
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Abstract
Aims and objective: The aim of this study was to determine whether the training would influence the psychological mindedness of nurses and midwives. In addition, we explored the relationship of the change of psychological mindedness before and after the training and the
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Aims and objective: The aim of this study was to determine whether the training would influence the psychological mindedness of nurses and midwives. In addition, we explored the relationship of the change of psychological mindedness before and after the training and the correlation with their personality traits. Background: It is important for perinatal health professionals such as nurses and midwives to acquire intervention skills such as psychotherapy and counselling techniques. We think that one of the essential requisites is psychological mindedness. Method: A total of 45 perinatal health professionals who participated in the postpartum depression prevention programme were distributed a set of questionnaires including the Psychological Mindedness Scale (PMS) and Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI) at the beginning and end of the training. Results: The PMS scores increased significantly after the training. A structured equation modelling suggested that PMS and self-directedness predicted each other whereas PMS predicted low harm avoidance. Conclusion: These findings indicate that the psychological mindedness of nurses and midwives could be advanced by a course of training and that this could be supported by high self-directedness. The harm avoidance trait may be reduced by increased psychological mindedness. Relevance to clinical practice: Nurses and nursing students are apt to psychological skill training in the advancement of psychological mindedness. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Healthy Ageing in People with Intellectual Disabilities from Managers’ Perspective: A Qualitative Study
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 45; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030045
Received: 23 May 2017 / Revised: 28 July 2017 / Accepted: 4 August 2017 / Published: 18 August 2017
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Abstract
An increasing number of people with intellectual disability (ID) are reaching older ages today although they experience more health problems than the older population without ID. Leaders in intellectual disability services can greatly influence the conditions for a healthy ageing, and the aim
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An increasing number of people with intellectual disability (ID) are reaching older ages today although they experience more health problems than the older population without ID. Leaders in intellectual disability services can greatly influence the conditions for a healthy ageing, and the aim of the present study was to explore healthy ageing in this group from the perspective of the leaders. Interviews with 20 leaders were subjected to qualitative content analysis. The findings gave rise to the overall theme ageing in dependence, which emerged from the following six categories: Supporting self-determination; Inaccessible activities after retirement; Signs of decline; Increased and specific needs for support and care; A non-question of gender; Aspects concerning the end of life and death. A prerequisite for healthy ageing in the case of people with ID is, according to the leaders, that they can live the life according to their preferences and make independent choices whilst at the same time receiving adequate support. With the shrinking of their social network after retirement, they become increasingly dependent on staff and leaders in the group home, who need to know what healthy ageing implies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing with Chronic Disease and Disability)
Open AccessArticle Content Analysis of Student Essays after Attending a Problem-Based Learning Course: Facilitating the Development of Critical Thinking and Communication Skills in Japanese Nursing Students
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 47; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030047
Received: 6 July 2017 / Revised: 16 August 2017 / Accepted: 18 August 2017 / Published: 22 August 2017
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Abstract
The importance of active learning has continued to increase in Japan. The authors conducted classes for first-year students who entered the nursing program using the problem-based learning method which is a kind of active learning. Students discussed social topics in classes. The purposes
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The importance of active learning has continued to increase in Japan. The authors conducted classes for first-year students who entered the nursing program using the problem-based learning method which is a kind of active learning. Students discussed social topics in classes. The purposes of this study were to analyze the post-class essay, describe logical and critical thinking after attended a Problem-Based Learning (PBL) course. The authors used Mayring’s methodology for qualitative content analysis and text mining. In the description about the skills required to resolve social issues, seven categories were extracted: (recognition of diverse social issues), (attitudes about resolving social issues), (discerning the root cause), (multi-lateral information processing skills), (making a path to resolve issues), (processivity in dealing with issues), and (reflecting). In the description about communication, five categories were extracted: (simple statement), (robust theories), (respecting the opponent), (communication skills), and (attractive presentations). As the result of text mining, the words extracted more than 100 times included “issue,” “society,” “resolve,” “myself,” “ability,” “opinion,” and “information.” Education using PBL could be an effective means of improving skills that students described, and communication in general. Some students felt difficulty of communication resulting from characteristics of Japanese. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Collaborative Payer Provider Model Enhances Primary Care, Producing Triple Aim Plus One Outcomes: A Cohort Study
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 48; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030048
Received: 10 July 2017 / Revised: 18 August 2017 / Accepted: 25 August 2017 / Published: 27 August 2017
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Abstract
Rising health care costs are threatening the fiscal solvency of patients, employers, payers, and governments. The Collaborative Payer Provider Model (CPPM) addresses this challenge by reinventing the role of the payer into a full-service collaborative ally of the physician. From 2010 through 2014,
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Rising health care costs are threatening the fiscal solvency of patients, employers, payers, and governments. The Collaborative Payer Provider Model (CPPM) addresses this challenge by reinventing the role of the payer into a full-service collaborative ally of the physician. From 2010 through 2014, a Medicare Advantage plan prospectively deployed the CPPM, averaging 30,561 members with costs that were 73.6% of fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare (p < 0.001). The health plan was not part of an integrated delivery system. After allocating $80 per member per month (PMPM) for primary care costs, the health plan had medical cost ratios averaging 75.1% before surplus distribution. Member benefits were the best in the market. The health plan was rated 4.5 Stars by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for years 1–4, and 5 Stars in study year 5 for quality, patient experience, access to care, and care process metrics. Primary care and specialist satisfaction were significantly better than national benchmarks. Savings resulted from shifts in spending from inpatient to outpatient settings, and from specialists to primary care physicians when appropriate. The CPPM is a scalable model that enables a win-win-win system for patients, providers, and payers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Breakfast Cereal Consumption and Obesity Risk amongst the Mid-Age Cohort of the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 49; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030049
Received: 26 July 2017 / Revised: 16 August 2017 / Accepted: 25 August 2017 / Published: 30 August 2017
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Abstract
Obesity affects 27.5% of Australian women. Breakfast cereal consumption has been proposed to be protective against obesity. This study investigated the association of breakfast cereal consumption with the risk of developing obesity (Body Mass Index (BMI) ≥ 30 kg/m2) over 12
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Obesity affects 27.5% of Australian women. Breakfast cereal consumption has been proposed to be protective against obesity. This study investigated the association of breakfast cereal consumption with the risk of developing obesity (Body Mass Index (BMI) ≥ 30 kg/m2) over 12 years among mid-age participants in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH). Dietary data were obtained at S3 and obesity incidence at S4–S7. Women were excluded if: dietary data were incomplete, energy intake was <4500 or >20,000 kJ/day, or they reported being overweight or obese at S3. Logistic regressions with discrete time survival analysis investigated the association between breakfast cereal intake and incident obesity and were adjusted for: area of residency, income, smoking, physical activity, hypertension, dietary intakes and a discrete measure of time. There were 308 incident cases of obesity. Any breakfast cereal intake was not associated with incident obesity (Odds Ratio (OR): 0.92; p = 0.68). Oat-based cereal (OR: 0.71; p = 0.01), muesli (OR: 0.57; p = 0.00) and All-Bran (OR: 0.62; p = 0.01) intakes were associated with a significant reduction in obesity risk. Among this cohort, muesli on its own, or as part of oat-based cereals, and All-Bran, were associated with a reduction in obesity. This effect may be due to particular characteristics of these cereal eaters, but the relationship warrants further investigation. Full article
Open AccessArticle Nurse Perceptions of Artists as Collaborators in Interprofessional Care Teams
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 50; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030050
Received: 31 July 2017 / Revised: 21 August 2017 / Accepted: 23 August 2017 / Published: 30 August 2017
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Abstract
Increased attention is being given to interprofessional collaboration in healthcare, which has been shown to improve patient satisfaction, patient safety, healthcare processes, and health outcomes. As the arts and artists are being more widely incorporated into healthcare settings throughout the world, professional artists
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Increased attention is being given to interprofessional collaboration in healthcare, which has been shown to improve patient satisfaction, patient safety, healthcare processes, and health outcomes. As the arts and artists are being more widely incorporated into healthcare settings throughout the world, professional artists are contributing to interprofessional care teams. A secondary directed content analysis of interviews with 31 nurses on a medical-surgical care unit investigated the roles and impacts of professional artists on the interprofessional care team. The investigation utilized established domains of interprofessional care, including values and ethics, roles and responsibilities, interprofessional communication, and teams and teamwork, and created the domain of quality of care. Findings suggest that artists are valued by nurses as members of the interprofessional care team, that they enhance the provision of patient-centered care, and that they improve quality of care by providing holistic dimensions of caring, including cognitive and social engagement, and meaningful interaction. The presence of artists on interprofessional teams provides a cost-effective and welcome resource for clinical staff and builds a culture in which creativity and interdisciplinary collaboration are more highly valued and activated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
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Open AccessArticle Paint it Black: Using Change-Point Analysis to Investigate Increasing Vulnerability to Depression towards the End of Vincent van Gogh’s Life
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 53; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030053
Received: 24 July 2017 / Revised: 22 August 2017 / Accepted: 23 August 2017 / Published: 4 September 2017
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Abstract
This study investigated whether Vincent van Gogh became increasingly self-focused—and thus vulnerable to depression—towards the end of his life, through a quantitative analysis of his written pronoun use over time. A change-point analysis was conducted on the time series formed by the pronoun
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This study investigated whether Vincent van Gogh became increasingly self-focused—and thus vulnerable to depression—towards the end of his life, through a quantitative analysis of his written pronoun use over time. A change-point analysis was conducted on the time series formed by the pronoun use in Van Gogh’s letters. We used time as a predictor to see whether there was evidence for increased self-focus towards the end of Van Gogh’s life, and we compared this to the pattern in the letters written before his move to Arles. Specifically, we examined Van Gogh’s use of first person singular pronouns (FPSP) and first person plural pronouns (FPPP) in the 415 letters he wrote while working as an artist before his move to Arles, and in the next 248 letters he wrote after his move to Arles until his death in Auvers-sur-Oise. During the latter period, Van Gogh’s use of FPSP showed an annual increase of 0.68% (SE = 0.15, p < 0.001) and his use of FPPP showed an annual decrease of 0.23% (SE = 0.04, p < 0.001), indicating increasing self-focus and vulnerability to depression. This trend differed from Van Gogh’s pronoun use in the former period (which showed no significant trend in FPSP, and an annual increase of FPPP of 0.03%, SE = 0.02, p = 0.04). This study suggests that Van Gogh’s death was preceded by a gradually increasing self-focus and vulnerability to depression. It also illustrates how existing methods (i.e., quantitative linguistic analysis and change-point analysis) can be combined to study specific research questions in innovative ways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
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Open AccessCommunication Attitudes towards Human Papilloma Virus Vaccination in the Latin American Andean Region
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 55; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030055
Received: 30 July 2017 / Revised: 31 August 2017 / Accepted: 6 September 2017 / Published: 8 September 2017
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Abstract
This commentary explores the distribution of human papilloma virus (HPV) and HPV-related diseases, and factors affecting attitudes towards HPV, HPV-related diseases, and HPV vaccination in the Latin American Andean region. Lack of knowledge of HPV, known negative attitudes or incorrect assumptions about HPV,
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This commentary explores the distribution of human papilloma virus (HPV) and HPV-related diseases, and factors affecting attitudes towards HPV, HPV-related diseases, and HPV vaccination in the Latin American Andean region. Lack of knowledge of HPV, known negative attitudes or incorrect assumptions about HPV, HPV-related diseases, and HPV vaccination provide a basis upon which to develop targeted HPV awareness and preventive health media campaigns. For maximal effect, media campaigns should use the internet, radio, and television to address health care providers, parents, and students. Additional programming can be developed for clinics to use in-house with their clients. Ministries of Education, Finance, and Health all have roles to play to increase national HPV, HPV-related diseases, and HPV vaccination awareness. Full article
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Open AccessArticle “Found Performance”: Towards a Musical Methodology for Exploring the Aesthetics of Care
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 59; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030059
Received: 30 July 2017 / Revised: 17 August 2017 / Accepted: 24 August 2017 / Published: 18 September 2017
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Abstract
Concepts of performance in fine art reflect key processes in music therapy. Music therapy enables practitioners to reframe patients as performers, producing new meanings around the clinical knowledge attached to medical histories and constructs. In this paper, music therapy practices are considered in
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Concepts of performance in fine art reflect key processes in music therapy. Music therapy enables practitioners to reframe patients as performers, producing new meanings around the clinical knowledge attached to medical histories and constructs. In this paper, music therapy practices are considered in the wider context of art history, with reference to allied theories from social research. Tracing a century in art that has revised the performativity of found objects (starting with Duchamp’s “Fountain”), and of found sound (crystallised by Cage’s 4′ 33) this paper proposes that music therapy might be a pioneer methodology of “found performance”. Examples from music therapy and contemporary socially engaged art practices are brought as potential links between artistic methodologies and medical humanities research, with specific reference to notions of Aesthetics of Care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)

Review

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Open AccessReview Interventions to Support Integrated Psychological Care and Holistic Health Outcomes in Paediatrics
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 44; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030044
Received: 7 July 2017 / Revised: 4 August 2017 / Accepted: 7 August 2017 / Published: 16 August 2017
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Abstract
There are strong calls from many national and international bodies for there to be a ‘holistic’ and integrated approach to the understanding and management of psychological and physical health needs. Such holistic approaches are characterized by the treatment of the whole person, taking
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There are strong calls from many national and international bodies for there to be a ‘holistic’ and integrated approach to the understanding and management of psychological and physical health needs. Such holistic approaches are characterized by the treatment of the whole person, taking into account mental and social factors, rather than just the symptoms of a disease. Holistic approaches can impact on mental and physical health and are cost-effective. Several psychological interventions have demonstrated efficacy in improving holistic health outcomes, for example Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Behavioural Therapies and Problem Solving Therapies. They have shown to impact upon a wide range of outcomes, including psychological distress, pain, physical health, medication adherence, and family outcomes. There is increasing recognition that the holistic goals of the child and family should be prioritised, and that interventions and outcomes should reflect these goals. A focus on holistic goals in therapy can be achieved through a combination of personalised goal-based outcomes in addition to symptom-based measures. Full article
Open AccessReview Nature Versus Nurture: Does Proteostasis Imbalance Underlie the Genetic, Environmental, and Age-Related Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s Disease?
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 46; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030046
Received: 29 June 2017 / Revised: 27 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 August 2017 / Published: 22 August 2017
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Abstract
Aging is a risk factor for a number of “age-related diseases”, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). AD affects more than a third of all people over the age of 85, and is the leading cause of dementia worldwide. Symptoms include forgetfulness, memory loss, and
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Aging is a risk factor for a number of “age-related diseases”, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). AD affects more than a third of all people over the age of 85, and is the leading cause of dementia worldwide. Symptoms include forgetfulness, memory loss, and cognitive decline, ultimately resulting in the need for full-time care. While there is no cure for AD, pharmacological approaches to alleviate symptoms and target underlying causes of the disease have been developed, albeit with limited success. This review presents the age-related, genetic, and environmental risk factors for AD and proposes a hypothesis for the mechanistic link between genetics and the environment. In short, much is known about the genetics of early-onset familial AD (EO-FAD) and the central role played by the Aβ peptide and protein misfolding, but late-onset AD (LOAD) is not thought to have direct genetic causes. Nonetheless, genetic risk factors such as isoforms of the protein ApoE have been identified. Additional findings suggest that air pollution caused by the combustion of fossil fuels may be an important environmental risk factor for AD. A hypothesis suggesting that poor air quality might act by disrupting protein folding homeostasis (proteostasis) is presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing with Chronic Disease and Disability)
Open AccessReview The Impact of Hemodialysis Frequency and Duration on Blood Pressure Management and Quality of Life in End-Stage Renal Disease Patients
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 52; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030052
Received: 21 July 2017 / Revised: 22 August 2017 / Accepted: 29 August 2017 / Published: 2 September 2017
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Abstract
Cardiovascular complications are the most prominent causes of morbidity and mortality among chronic kidney disease (CKD) and end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients undergoing standard hemodialysis (HD) therapy. Cardiovascular disease risk is increased significantly through persistent hypertension and blood pressure (BP) fluctuation, which are
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Cardiovascular complications are the most prominent causes of morbidity and mortality among chronic kidney disease (CKD) and end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients undergoing standard hemodialysis (HD) therapy. Cardiovascular disease risk is increased significantly through persistent hypertension and blood pressure (BP) fluctuation, which are the most common complications of CKD. It was hypothesized that an extended approach with lengthier and more frequent dialysis sessions, referred to in this paper as “extended hemodialysis” (EHD), can potentially lower and stabilize blood pressure, and consequently reduce the rate of morbidity and mortality. A greater reduction of volume (salt and water) with higher frequency can improve patient quality of life (QOL). Eleven papers, including clinical trials and systematic reviews were chosen and analyzed. The extracted data was used to evaluate the change in blood pressure levels between standard HD and EHD. Overall, the studies showed that EHD resulted in improved blood pressure management; therefore, we concluded that there will be a decrease in cardiovascular disease risk, stroke, and morbidity and mortality rate. There will be also an improvement in patient QOL due to beneficial effects of the EHD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Socio-Economic Impact of End Stage Kidney Disease)
Open AccessReview Reducing the Shared Burden of Chronic Conditions among Persons Aging with Disability and Older Adults in the United States through Bridging Aging and Disability
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 56; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030056
Received: 15 July 2017 / Revised: 21 August 2017 / Accepted: 29 August 2017 / Published: 12 September 2017
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Abstract
Persons aging with long-term disabilities such as spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis and older adults share similar chronic conditions in mid and later life in the United States. The rising general interest and more prevalent federal requirements for use of evidence-based practices
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Persons aging with long-term disabilities such as spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis and older adults share similar chronic conditions in mid and later life in the United States. The rising general interest and more prevalent federal requirements for use of evidence-based practices (EBP) in health promotion and chronic condition interventions highlight the gap between demand and the availability of EBPs for persons aging with disability in particular. Addressing this gap will require focused efforts that will benefit substantially by bridging the fields of aging and disability/rehabilitation to develop new EBPs, translate existing EBPs across populations, and borrow best practices across fields where there are few current EBPs. Understanding distinctions between disability-related secondary conditions and age-related chronic conditions is a first step in identifying shared conditions that are important to address for both mid-life and older adults with disabilities. This review articulates these distinctions, describes shared conditions, and discusses the current lack of EBPs for both populations. It also provides recommendations for bridging activities in the United States by researchers, professionals, and consumer advocates. We argue that these can more efficiently move research and practice than if activities were undertaken separately in each field (aging and disability/rehabilitation). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing with Chronic Disease and Disability)
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Other

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Open AccessPerspective End Stage Renal Disease—A Nephrologist’s Perspective of Two Different Circumstances as Typified by Kidney Transplantation Experience in a Nigerian Hospital Versus a Large US Medical School
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 31; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030031
Received: 28 May 2017 / Revised: 29 June 2017 / Accepted: 3 July 2017 / Published: 11 July 2017
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Abstract
Renal transplantation is the sine qua non consummate form of renal replacement therapy (RRT) for end stage renal disease (ESRD). Despite the increasing ESRD burden worldwide, developing countries continue to experience a gross lack of RRT options for its teeming citizens with ESRD.
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Renal transplantation is the sine qua non consummate form of renal replacement therapy (RRT) for end stage renal disease (ESRD). Despite the increasing ESRD burden worldwide, developing countries continue to experience a gross lack of RRT options for its teeming citizens with ESRD. This report is a demonstration of a nephrologist’s experience and dilemma trying to make sense of the yawning disparity between RRT options, especially renal transplantation, as it applies to the citizens of the USA versus the citizens of Nigeria. The limited three-year experience of renal transplantation at Garki Hospital, located in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, which is one of the very few centers carrying out renal transplantation in Nigeria, was starkly contrasted with this author’s first-hand experience at the University of Maryland Medical School, in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, as a Nephrology Fellow between 2000 and 2002. The potential role of public-private partnership (PPP) ventures in developing countries is considered as a way to help bridge this gap. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Socio-Economic Impact of End Stage Kidney Disease)
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Open AccessProject Report Through the Patients’ Eyes: The Experience of End-Stage Renal Disease Patients Concerning the Provided Nursing Care
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 36; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030036
Received: 17 May 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
Chronic kidney disease is a condition that affects both the physical and mental abilities of patients. Nursing care is of pivotal importance, in particular when end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients are concerned, since the quality of the provided care may severely influence the
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Chronic kidney disease is a condition that affects both the physical and mental abilities of patients. Nursing care is of pivotal importance, in particular when end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients are concerned, since the quality of the provided care may severely influence the patient’s quality of life. This is why it is important to explore patient experiences concerning the rendered care. However, limited up-to-date studies have addressed this issue. The aim of the present study was to stress the experiences of ESRD patients concerning the provided nursing care in the hemodialysis unit at the University Hospital in Heraklion, Crete. A qualitative methodological approach was used, based on the principles of phenomenological epistemology. Semi-structured interviews were conducted, and open-ended questions were applied to record how patients experienced the rendered care during dialysis. The recorded data were analyzed via qualitative content analysis, which revealed three main themes: ‘Physical Care’, ‘Psychological Support’ and ‘Education’. Patients’ views were conceptualized into sub-themes within each main theme. The interviews revealed the varied and distinct views of ESRD patients, indicating that the rendered care should be individualized. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Socio-Economic Impact of End Stage Kidney Disease)
Open AccessDiscussion Challenges in Expanding Access to Dialysis in South Africa—Expensive Modalities, Cost Constraints and Human Rights
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 38; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030038
Received: 28 June 2017 / Revised: 21 July 2017 / Accepted: 24 July 2017 / Published: 31 July 2017
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Abstract
South Africa is a country with two distinct health sectors, which are both characterised by inequalities. Within this context, patients with end stage renal disease face unique and sometimes impenetrable barriers to accessing dialysis. There are a number of reasons for this situation.
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South Africa is a country with two distinct health sectors, which are both characterised by inequalities. Within this context, patients with end stage renal disease face unique and sometimes impenetrable barriers to accessing dialysis. There are a number of reasons for this situation. These include: the South African government’s endorsement of discordant, unequal policies, which disadvantage the most vulnerable; a lack of robust national guidelines; and divisive rationing practices, which are ad hoc and place the burden of responsibility for rationing dialysis on the clinician. In this paper, we trace the socio-economic mechanisms of how we have come to be in this situation, and overlay this with a detailed examination of South African legislation. Finally, we make comprehensive practical recommendations for rectifying the situation, which include engagement with key stakeholders, public–private partnerships, and more equitable funding mechanisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Socio-Economic Impact of End Stage Kidney Disease)
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Open AccessCase Report Telemonitoring via Self-Report and Video Review in Community Palliative Care: A Case Report
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 51; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030051
Received: 11 July 2017 / Revised: 9 August 2017 / Accepted: 24 August 2017 / Published: 31 August 2017
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Abstract
Continuous monitoring and management of a person’s symptoms and performance status are critical for the delivery of effective palliative care. This monitoring occurs routinely in inpatient settings; however, such close evaluation in the community has remained elusive. Patient self-reporting using telehealth offers opportunities
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Continuous monitoring and management of a person’s symptoms and performance status are critical for the delivery of effective palliative care. This monitoring occurs routinely in inpatient settings; however, such close evaluation in the community has remained elusive. Patient self-reporting using telehealth offers opportunities to identify symptom escalation and functional decline in real time, and facilitate timely proactive management. We report the case of a 57­year-old man with advanced non-small cell lung cancer who participated in a telehealth trial run by a community palliative care service. This gentleman was able to complete self-reporting of function and symptoms via iPad although at times he was reticent to do so. Self-reporting was perceived as a means to communicate his clinical needs without being a bother to the community palliative care team. He also participated in a videoconference with clinical staff from the community palliative care service and his General Practitioner. Videoconferencing with the nurse and GP was highly valued as an effective way to communicate and also because it eliminated the need for travel. This case report provides important information about the feasibility and acceptability of palliative care telehealth as a way to better manage clinical care in a community setting. Full article
Open AccessBrief Report Decrease in Healthcare Utilization and Costs for Opioid Users Following Residential Integrated Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 54; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030054
Received: 10 June 2017 / Revised: 28 August 2017 / Accepted: 30 August 2017 / Published: 7 September 2017
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Abstract
Background: Opioid use results in higher healthcare utilization and costs, particularly among those with co-occurring mental health disorders. Presumably, effective treatment would result in a reduction in healthcare utilization and costs. To date, research has not examined this question. As such, the purpose
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Background: Opioid use results in higher healthcare utilization and costs, particularly among those with co-occurring mental health disorders. Presumably, effective treatment would result in a reduction in healthcare utilization and costs. To date, research has not examined this question. As such, the purpose of this study was to estimate and compare pre- and post-treatment healthcare utilization and costs for individuals receiving residential integrated treatment for co-occurring mental health and opioid use disorders. Methods: A single-group, repeated measures design was used to examine changes in pre- and post-treatment healthcare utilization and costs among a sample of individuals with co-occurring mental health and opioid use disorders who received residential, integrated treatment. Results: Significant reductions in emergency rooms visits, inpatient admissions, and resulting costs were observed in the six months following treatment. Conclusions: Residential, integrated treatment of co-occurring mental health and opioid use disorders can significantly decrease both utilization and cost of healthcare among opioid users with co-occurring mental health disorders. Full article
Open AccessConcept Paper Performable Case Studies in Ethics Education
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 57; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030057
Received: 2 August 2017 / Revised: 3 September 2017 / Accepted: 8 September 2017 / Published: 12 September 2017
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Abstract
Bioethics education often includes the study of short stories, novels, plays, and films, because such materials present case examples that can highlight relevant issues and questions especially vividly for a wide range of students. In addition, creative writing is widely used in the
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Bioethics education often includes the study of short stories, novels, plays, and films, because such materials present case examples that can highlight relevant issues and questions especially vividly for a wide range of students. In addition, creative writing is widely used in the education of health professional students and in continuing education settings for health professionals. There are very few academic or professional disciplines that do not use case studies, but the case study in dialogic form has not been standard practice for thousands of years. Dramatic arts casuistry—the creation and performance of short case studies designed specifically to raise bioethics issues for discussion—represents an application of literature and the medical humanities that is both unique and uniquely valuable. This essay describes the development and history of a course that has been successfully taught to medical students and graduate bioethics students, in which the class researches, writes, and performs a case study designed to elicit reflection and discussion about a topic and set of bioethics issues of current interest to both academic and general audiences. The model is also suited to the presentation and discussion of existing case studies, both live and via on-demand audio. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
Open AccessPerspective Force and Presence in the World of Medicine
Healthcare 2017, 5(3), 58; doi:10.3390/healthcare5030058
Received: 25 July 2017 / Revised: 31 August 2017 / Accepted: 3 September 2017 / Published: 13 September 2017
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Abstract
Medicine can not only be read with a poetic imagination, but also configured as a poetic practice, moving beyond the instrumental. The poet Wallace Stevens made a distinction between ‘Force’ and ‘Presence’—the former can be read as combative, the latter as pacific. Modern
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Medicine can not only be read with a poetic imagination, but also configured as a poetic practice, moving beyond the instrumental. The poet Wallace Stevens made a distinction between ‘Force’ and ‘Presence’—the former can be read as combative, the latter as pacific. Modern medicine has been shaped historically by the combative metaphor of a ‘war against disease’, turning medicine into a quasi-militaristic culture fond of hierarchy. This is supplemented by the metaphor of the ‘body as machine’, reducing the complex and unpredictable body to a linear, if complicated, apparatus. The two metaphors align medicine with the modern industrial–military complex that is masculine, heroic, and controlling in character. In an era in which medicine is feminising and expected to be patient-centred, collaborative (inter-professional) and transparent to the public as a democratic gesture, the industrial–military metaphor complex should no longer be shaping medicine—yet its influence is still keenly felt, especially in surgery. This continuing dominance of Force over Presence matters because it is a style running counter to the collaborative, team-based medicine needed for high levels of patient safety. Medicine will authentically democratise only as new, pacific shaping metaphors emerge: those of ‘Presence’, such as ‘hospitality’. Hospitals can once again become places of hospitality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Humanities and Healthcare)
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