Open AccessArticle
Effective Partnership in Community-Based Health Promotion: Lessons from the Health Literacy Partnership
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1550; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121550 -
Abstract
This paper aims to explore key elements needed to successfully develop healthy partnerships and collaborative working in community-based health promotion. It draws upon the lessons learned from a case study with the Health Literacy Partnership in Stoke-on-Trent, UK in developing the health literacy
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This paper aims to explore key elements needed to successfully develop healthy partnerships and collaborative working in community-based health promotion. It draws upon the lessons learned from a case study with the Health Literacy Partnership in Stoke-on-Trent, UK in developing the health literacy strategy in the area. The process was underpinned by respect for diverse yet complementary perspectives and skills from the grassroots up. This involved engagement with key stakeholders, development and support for community projects, and sharing of good practice with other national and local organizations. Stakeholders involved in developing the strategy also had a keen interest in health literacy and a strong commitment to promoting health and well-being in the area. Through patience, perseverance, and continuous open communication and learning, the health literacy strategy in Stoke-on-Trent, UK is beginning to have a ripple effect into local practice, and will potentially influence policy in the future. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Acceptance among Pregnant Women in Zhejiang Province, China: Evidence Based on Health Belief Model
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1551; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121551 -
Abstract
Background: Reasons for acceptance of seasonal influenza vaccine (SIV) vaccination among pregnant women in China are poorly understood. We assessed the intention to accept SIV among pregnant women in Zhejiang province, by using a self-administrated structured questionnaire developed on the basis of health
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Background: Reasons for acceptance of seasonal influenza vaccine (SIV) vaccination among pregnant women in China are poorly understood. We assessed the intention to accept SIV among pregnant women in Zhejiang province, by using a self-administrated structured questionnaire developed on the basis of health belief model (HBM). Methods: From 1 January to 31 March 2014, pregnant women with ≥12 gestational weeks who attended antenatal clinics (ANCs) at public hospitals in 6 out of 90 districts were surveyed using a self-administered questionnaire that covered knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs related to SIV vaccination and influenza infection. We examined the associations between the acceptance of SIV vaccination and the demographic factors and HBM constructs using the logistic regression model, calculating the adjusted odds ratio (AOR). Results: Of the 1252 participants, 76.28% were willing to receive the SIV vaccination during their current pregnancy. High levels of perceived susceptibility of influenza (AOR = 1.75 (95%CI: 1.36–2.08)), high levels of perceived severity of influenza (AOR = 1.62 (95%CI: 1.25–1.95)), high level of perceived benefits of vaccination (AOR = 1.97 (95%CI: 1.76–2.21)), and high levels of cues to action were positively associated with the acceptance of SIV vaccination among pregnant women (AOR = 2.03 (95%CI: 1.70–2.69)), while high level of perceived barriers of vaccination was a negative determinant (AOR = 0.76 (95%CI: 0.62–0.94)). Conclusions: Poor knowledge and negative attitude towards SIV were associated with the poor acceptance of SIV. Health providers’ recommendations were important to pregnant women’s acceptance of SIV. Health education and direct communication strategies on SIV vaccination and influenza infection are necessary to improve the acceptance of SIV vaccination among pregnant women. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Same Abbreviated Injury Scale Values May Be Associated with Different Risks to Mortality in Trauma Patients: A Cross-Sectional Retrospective Study Based on the Trauma Registry System in a Level I Trauma Center
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1552; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121552 -
Abstract
The Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) measures injury severity of a trauma patient with a numeric method for ranking anatomy-based specific injuries. The summation of the squares of the three most severe injuries in the AIS of six predefined body regions comprises the Injury
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The Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) measures injury severity of a trauma patient with a numeric method for ranking anatomy-based specific injuries. The summation of the squares of the three most severe injuries in the AIS of six predefined body regions comprises the Injury Severity Score (ISS). It assumes that the mortality of a given AIS value is similar across all body regions. However, such an assumption is less explored in the literature. In this study, we aimed to compare the mortality rates of the patients with the same AIS value in different injured body regions in a level I trauma center. Hospitalized adult trauma patients with isolated serious to critical injury (AIS of 3 to 5) between 1 January 2009, and 31 December 2016, from the Trauma Registry System in a level I trauma center were grouped according to the injured body regions (including, the head/neck, thorax, abdomen, or extremities) and were exclusively compared according to their AIS stratum. Categorical data were compared using the two-sided Fisher exact or Pearson chi-square tests. ANOVA with Games-Howell post hoc test was performed to assess the differences in continuous data of the patients with injury in different body regions. The primary outcome of the study was in-hospital mortality. The adjusted odds ratios (AORs) were estimated using a stepwise selection of a multivariable regression model adjusted by controlling the confounding variables such as sex, age, comorbidities, and ISS. Survival curves were estimated with the Kaplan–Meier approach with a corresponding log-rank test. The patients with AIS of 5 for abdomen injury and those with AIS of 3 for extremity injury had a significantly lower odds of adjusted mortality (adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 0.1, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.01–0.39, p = 0.004 and AOR 0.3, 95% CI 0.15–0.51, p < 0.001, respectively) than that of the patients with head/neck injury. However, the patients with AIS of 4 for extremity injury demonstrated significantly higher odds of adjusted mortality (AOR 8.4, 95% CI 2.84–25.07, p < 0.001) than the patients with head/neck injury. This study found that the risks to mortality in the patients with a given AIS value of serious to critical injury in different injured body regions were not the same, even after controlling for confounding variables such as sex, age, comorbidities, and ISS. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Practicing Dentists’ Self-Efficacy and Associated Factors in Managing the Treatment of Adults with Mental and Physical Disabilities: An Exploratory Cross-Sectional Study in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1549; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121549 -
Abstract
Background: Provision of oral healthcare to adults with mental and physical disabilities (AMPD) remains a challenging area across various healthcare systems. The present study aimed to assess self-reported efficacy and investigate factors associated with self-efficacy in the management of AMPD among practicing dentists
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Background: Provision of oral healthcare to adults with mental and physical disabilities (AMPD) remains a challenging area across various healthcare systems. The present study aimed to assess self-reported efficacy and investigate factors associated with self-efficacy in the management of AMPD among practicing dentists in Saudi Arabia. Methods: A pilot-tested, self-administered questionnaire was distributed to a convenience sample of 1000 dentists. Descriptive and inferential analyses were performed on the collected responses. Results: Among the respondents (54%), 43% were males. Only 14% described their self-efficacy in managing AMPD as “High”. Multivariable regression analyses revealed significant associations between “High” self-efficacy and male gender (Odd ratio (OR) = 2.39, 95% CI = 1.16–4.89), experience practicing dentistry for 11 years or more (OR = 2.19, 95% CI = 1.04–4.47), specialization in pediatric dentistry (OR = 3.98, 95% CI = 1.31–12.07), previous experience in managing AMPD (OR = 4.23, 95% CI = 1.59–11.22), and awareness of regulations for managing AMPD (OR = 2.62, 95% CI = 1.42–4.38). The interaction of gender x age was significantly associated (p = 0.028) with “High” self-efficacy. Gender-stratified analyses revealed a significant association between age and “High” self-efficacy among male dentists only. Conclusions: The findings of the present study highlight that a large percentage of dentists reported “Low/Moderate” self-efficacy in managing AMPD, particularly among female dentists. However, further studies are required to verify the factors associated with self-efficacy in the present study, and to identify other factors that may influence self-efficacy in managing AMPD. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Effects of Weight Loss on Advanced Glycation End Products in Subjects with and without Diabetes: A Preliminary Report
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1553; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121553 -
Abstract
Advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) are formed endogenously as a normal ageing process and during food processing. High levels of AGEs have been implicated in the development of both macrovascular disease and microvascular disease. The purpose of this secondary analysis was to determine whether
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Advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) are formed endogenously as a normal ageing process and during food processing. High levels of AGEs have been implicated in the development of both macrovascular disease and microvascular disease. The purpose of this secondary analysis was to determine whether a major AGE species, Nε-carboxymethyllysine (CML), was reduced after weight loss. CML values decreased by 17% after weight loss. Participants with diabetes and pre-diabetes had a lower CML values at baseline and a smaller change in CML than overweight participants without diabetes. We conclude that, in addition to the known health benefits, weight loss may reduce AGEs. Randomized studies of the effect of weight loss on AGE in people with and without type 2 diabetes are needed to confirm these results. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Rapid Assessment of Stakeholder Concerns about Public Health. An Introduction to a Fast and Inexpensive Approach Applied on Health Concerns about Intensive Animal Production Systems
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1534; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121534 -
Abstract
To effectively manage environmental health risks, stakeholders often need to act collectively. Stakeholders vary in their desire to act due to many factors, such as knowledge, risk perception, interests, and worldviews. Understanding their perceptions of the issues at stake is crucial to support
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To effectively manage environmental health risks, stakeholders often need to act collectively. Stakeholders vary in their desire to act due to many factors, such as knowledge, risk perception, interests, and worldviews. Understanding their perceptions of the issues at stake is crucial to support the risk governance process. Even though concern assessment is a pivotal element of risk governance, few tools for rapid assessment are reported in the literature. We tested a rapid and relatively cheap approach, taking the Dutch debate on Intensive Animal Production Systems (IAPS) and health as an example. Dutch policy-oriented publications on IAPS and health and ten semi-structured in-depth interviews with a variety of stakeholders were analyzed to identify stakeholders and concerns involved in the Dutch debate about IAPS and health. Concerns were mapped and a stakeholder network was derived. Three classes of concerns were recognized in the discussions about IAPS and health: concerns related to health risks, concerns regarding the activity causing the risks (IAPS), and concerns about the process to control the risks. The notions of ‘trust’ and ‘scientific uncertainty’ appeared as important themes in the discussions. Argumentation based on concerns directly related to health risks, the activity causing the risk (IAPS), and its risk management can easily become muddled up in a societal debate, limiting the development of effective action perspectives. Acknowledging these multiple stakeholder concerns can clarify the positions taken by stakeholders and allow for more and other action perspectives to develop. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Exploratory Temporal and Spatial Analysis of Myocardial Infarction Hospitalizations in Calgary, Canada
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1555; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121555 -
Abstract
Spatial and temporal analyses are critical to understand the pattern of myocardial infarction (MI) hospitalizations over space and time, and to identify their underlying determinants. In this paper, we analyze MI hospitalizations in Calgary from 2004 to 2013, stratified by age and gender.
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Spatial and temporal analyses are critical to understand the pattern of myocardial infarction (MI) hospitalizations over space and time, and to identify their underlying determinants. In this paper, we analyze MI hospitalizations in Calgary from 2004 to 2013, stratified by age and gender. First, a seasonal trend decomposition analyzes the seasonality; then a linear regression models the trend component. Moran’s I and hot spot analyses explore the spatial pattern. Though exploratory, results show that most age and gender groups feature a statistically significant decline over the 10 years, consistent with previous studies in Canada. Decline rates vary across ages and genders, with the slowest decline observed for younger males. Each gender exhibits a seasonal pattern with peaks in both winter and summer. Spatially, MI hot spots are identified in older communities, and in socioeconomically and environmentally disadvantaged communities. In the older communities, higher MI rates appear to be more highly associated with demographics. Conversely, worse air quality appears to be locally associated with higher MI incidence in younger age groups. The study helps identify areas of concern, where MI hot spots are identified for younger age groups, suggesting the need for localized public health policies to target local risk factors. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Investigating Lushan Earthquake Victims’ Individual Behavior Response and Rescue Organization
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1556; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121556 -
Abstract
Research concerning the impact of earthquake victims’ individual behavior and its association with earthquake-related injuries is lacking. This study examined this relationship along with effectiveness of earthquake rescue measures. The six most severely destroyed townships during the Lushan earthquake were examined; 28 villages
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Research concerning the impact of earthquake victims’ individual behavior and its association with earthquake-related injuries is lacking. This study examined this relationship along with effectiveness of earthquake rescue measures. The six most severely destroyed townships during the Lushan earthquake were examined; 28 villages and three earthquake victims’ settlement camp areas were selected as research areas. Inclusion criteria comprised living in Lushan county for a longtime, living in Lushan county during the 2013 Lushan earthquake, and having one’s home destroyed. Earthquake victims with an intellectual disability or communication problems were excluded. The earthquake victims (N (number) = 5165, male = 2396) completed a questionnaire (response rate: 94.7%). Among them, 209 were injured (5.61%). Teachers (p < 0.0001, OR (odds ratios) = 3.33) and medical staff (p = 0.001, OR = 4.35) were more vulnerable to the earthquake than were farmers. Individual behavior was directly related to injuries, such as the first reaction after earthquake and fear. There is an obvious connection between earthquake-related injury and individual behavior characteristics. It is strongly suggested that victims receive mental health support from medical practitioners and the government to minimize negative effects. The initial reaction after an earthquake also played a vital role in victims’ trauma; therefore, earthquake-related experience and education may prevent injuries. Self-aid and mutual help played key roles in emergency, medical rescue efforts. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Food (In)Security in Rapidly Urbanising, Low-Income Contexts
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1554; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121554 -
Abstract
Urbanisation in low and middle-income nations presents both opportunities and immense challenges. As urban centres grow rapidly, inadequate housing and the lack of basic infrastructure and services affect a large and growing proportion of their population. There is also a growing body of
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Urbanisation in low and middle-income nations presents both opportunities and immense challenges. As urban centres grow rapidly, inadequate housing and the lack of basic infrastructure and services affect a large and growing proportion of their population. There is also a growing body of evidence on urban poverty and its links with environmental hazards. There is, however, limited knowledge of how these challenges affect the ways in which poor urban residents gain access to food and secure healthy and nutritious diets. With some important exceptions, current discussions on food security continue to focus on production, with limited attention to consumption. Moreover, urban consumers are typically treated as a homogenous group and access to food markets is assumed to be sufficient. This paper describes how, for the urban poor in low and middle-income countries, food affordability and utilisation are shaped by the income and non-income dimensions of poverty that include the urban space. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Differences in Spontaneous Intracerebral Hemorrhage Cases between Urban and Rural Regions of Taiwan: Big Data Analytics of Government Open Data
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1548; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121548 -
Abstract
This study evaluated the differences in spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH) between rural and urban areas of Taiwan with big data analysis. We used big data analytics and visualization tools to examine government open data, which included the residents’ health medical administrative data, economic
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This study evaluated the differences in spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH) between rural and urban areas of Taiwan with big data analysis. We used big data analytics and visualization tools to examine government open data, which included the residents’ health medical administrative data, economic status, educational status, and relevant information. The study subjects included sICH patients of Taipei region (29,741 cases) and Eastern Taiwan (4565 cases). The incidence of sICH per 100,000 population per year in Eastern Taiwan (71.3 cases) was significantly higher than that of the Taipei region (42.3 cases). The mean coverage area per hospital in Eastern Taiwan (452.4 km2) was significantly larger than the Taipei region (24 km2). The residents educational level in the Taipei region was significantly higher than that in Eastern Taiwan. The mean hospital length of stay in the Taipei region (17.9 days) was significantly greater than that in Eastern Taiwan (16.3 days) (p < 0.001). There were no significant differences in other medical profiles between two areas. Distance and educational barriers were two possible reasons for the higher incidence of sICH in the rural area of Eastern Taiwan. Further studies are necessary in order to understand these phenomena in greater depth. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Does the Short-Term Effect of Air Pollution Influence the Incidence of Spontaneous Intracerebral Hemorrhage in Different Patient Groups? Big Data Analysis in Taiwan
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1547; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121547 -
Abstract
Spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH) has a high mortality rate. Research has demonstrated that the occurrence of sICH is related to air pollution. This study used big data analysis to explore the impact of air pollution on the risk of sICH in patients of
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Spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH) has a high mortality rate. Research has demonstrated that the occurrence of sICH is related to air pollution. This study used big data analysis to explore the impact of air pollution on the risk of sICH in patients of differing age and geographic location. 39,053 cases were included in this study; 14,041 in the Taipei region (Taipei City and New Taipei City), 5537 in Taoyuan City, 7654 in Taichung City, 4739 in Tainan City, and 7082 in Kaohsiung City. The results of correlation analysis indicated that there were two pollutants groups, the CO and NO2 group and the PM2.5 and PM10 group. Furthermore, variations in the correlations of sICH with air pollutants were identified in different age groups. The co-factors of the influence of air pollutants in the different age groups were explored using regression analysis. This study integrated Taiwan National Health Insurance data and air pollution data to explore the risk factors of sICH using big data analytics. We found that PM2.5 and PM10 are very important risk factors for sICH, and age is an important modulating factor that allows air pollutants to influence the incidence of sICH. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Urinary Concentrations of Triclosan, Benzophenone-3, and Bisphenol A in Taiwanese Children and Adolescents
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1545; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121545 -
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to determine the levels of urinary triclosan (TCS), benzophenone-3 (BP-3), and bisphenol A (BPA) in 52 children and 71 adolescents. The effects of age and sex on the levels of urinary TCS, BP-3, and BPA were explored,
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The purpose of this study was to determine the levels of urinary triclosan (TCS), benzophenone-3 (BP-3), and bisphenol A (BPA) in 52 children and 71 adolescents. The effects of age and sex on the levels of urinary TCS, BP-3, and BPA were explored, respectively. Results demonstrated the overall detection rates of urinary TCS, BP-3, and BPA were 18.7%, 8.1%, and 49.6%, respectively. The females had higher TCS concentrations than males (p = 0.051). The detection rate of urinary BP-3 in females (12.3%) was higher than that in males (0%) (p = 0.015). Moreover, the detection rate of urinary BP-3 in adolescents (14.1%) was higher than that in children (0%) (p = 0.005). For children, no urinary BP-3 was found. There were no differences in detection rates and concentrations of urinary TCS, BP-3, and BPA between males and females, respectively. For adolescents, urinary BP-3 was only found in the females. Urinary TCS levels in females were higher than those in males (p = 0.047). The present study showed that urinary TCS concentrations in females were significantly higher than those in males, respectively. In addition, BP-3 was only detected in urine samples of female adolescents. Sex and age were the important factors influencing urinary TCS and BP-3 concentrations. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Race, Ethnicity, Income Concentration and 10-Year Change in Urban Greenness in the United States
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1546; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121546 -
Abstract
Background: Cross-sectional studies suggest urban greenness is unequally distributed by neighborhood demographics. However, the extent to which inequalities in greenness have changed over time remains unknown. Methods: We estimated 2001 and 2011 greenness using Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite-derived normalized difference vegetative index
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Background: Cross-sectional studies suggest urban greenness is unequally distributed by neighborhood demographics. However, the extent to which inequalities in greenness have changed over time remains unknown. Methods: We estimated 2001 and 2011 greenness using Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite-derived normalized difference vegetative index (NDVI) in 59,483 urban census tracts in the contiguous U.S. We fit spatial error models to estimate the association between baseline census tract demographic composition in 2000 and (1) 2001 greenness and (2) change in greenness between 2001 and 2011. Results: In models adjusted for population density, climatic factors, housing tenure, and Index of Concentration at the Extremes for income (ICE), an SD increase in percent White residents (a 30% increase) in 2000 was associated with 0.021 (95% CI: 0.018, 0.023) higher 2001 NDVI. We observed a stepwise reduction in 2001 NDVI with increased concentration of poverty. Tracts with a higher proportion of Hispanic residents in 2000 lost a small, statistically significant amount of greenness between 2001 and 2011 while tracts with higher proportions of Whites experienced a small, statistically significant increase in greenness over the same period. Conclusions: Census tracts with a higher proportion of racial/ethnic minorities, compared to a higher proportion of White residents, had less greenness in 2001 and lost more greenness between 2001 and 2011. Policies are needed to increase greenness, a health-promoting neighborhood asset, in disadvantaged communities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Setting Housing Standards to Improve Global Health
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1542; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121542 -
Abstract
Developing World Health Organization international guidelines is a highly formal process. Yet the resulting guidelines, which Member States are encouraged, but not required to adopt, are a powerful way of developing rigorous policy and fostering implementation. Using the example of the housing and
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Developing World Health Organization international guidelines is a highly formal process. Yet the resulting guidelines, which Member States are encouraged, but not required to adopt, are a powerful way of developing rigorous policy and fostering implementation. Using the example of the housing and health guidelines, which are currently being finalised, this paper outlines the process for developing WHO guidelines. This includes: forming a Guidelines Review Group that represents all regions of the world, and ensures gender balance and technical expertise; identifying key health outcomes of interest; commissioning systematic reviews of the evidence; assessing the evidence; and formulating recommendations. The strength of each recommendation is assessed based on the quality of the evidence, along with consideration of issues such as equity, acceptability, and feasibility of the implementation of the recommendation. The proposed housing guidelines will address: cold and hot indoor temperatures, home injuries, household crowding, accessibility and access to active travel infrastructure. Full article
Open AccessReview
Individual Data Linkage of Survey Data with Claims Data in Germany—An Overview Based on a Cohort Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1543; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121543 -
Abstract
Research based on health insurance data has a long tradition in Germany. By contrast, data linkage of survey data with such claims data is a relatively new field of research with high potential. Data linkage opens up new opportunities for analyses in the
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Research based on health insurance data has a long tradition in Germany. By contrast, data linkage of survey data with such claims data is a relatively new field of research with high potential. Data linkage opens up new opportunities for analyses in the field of health services research and public health. Germany has comprehensive rules and regulations of data protection that have to be followed. Therefore, a written informed consent is needed for individual data linkage. Additionally, the health system is characterized by heterogeneity of health insurance. The lidA-living at work-study is a cohort study on work, age and health, which linked survey data with claims data of a large number of statutory health insurance data. All health insurance funds were contacted, of whom a written consent was given. This paper will give an overview of individual data linkage of survey data with German claims data on the example of the lidA-study results. The challenges and limitations of data linkage will be presented. Despite heterogeneity, such kind of studies is possible with a negligibly small influence of bias. The experience we gain in lidA will be shown and provide important insights for other studies focusing on data linkage. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
An Exploration of Intent to Use Telehealth at Home for Patients with Chronic Diseases
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1544; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121544 -
Abstract
Telecare is defined as care practiced at a distance. It is an effective strategy for improving the self-health care management of home-patients with chronic diseases. The purpose of this study was to explore the intent to use of telehealth patients. The correlation between
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Telecare is defined as care practiced at a distance. It is an effective strategy for improving the self-health care management of home-patients with chronic diseases. The purpose of this study was to explore the intent to use of telehealth patients. The correlation between the self-care behaviors, the intent to use of telehealth, and the effects on physiological indicators of patients with chronic disease at home were studied. A cross-sectional study design employing purposive sampling was selected. The structured questionnaire ‘Telecare Usage Intention Scale and Self-Care Behavior Scale’ were used, ‘HbA1c, glucose levels and monthly blood pressure measurements’ were analyzed in this thirteen month study. The self-care behaviors of the participants were positively correlated with their intent to use telehealth (p < 0.01). The results also indicated that HbA1c, glucose levels and frequency BP measurement of the participants improved significantly after using telecare (p < 0.005). The results indicated a strong intent to use telehealth and positive perception of telecare services by in-home patients with a chronic disease. Telehealth improves the self-care behavior of in-home chronic disease patients and enhances medical professionals’ ability to deliver quality and effective healthcare. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Prevalence and Determinants of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus: A Cross-Sectional Study in China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1532; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121532 -
Abstract
Objectives: This study aimed to identify the prevalence of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and to examine its associations with social and behavioral factors, maternal body mass index (BMI), anemia, and hypertension. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis was performed on data collected from 2345 pregnant
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Objectives: This study aimed to identify the prevalence of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and to examine its associations with social and behavioral factors, maternal body mass index (BMI), anemia, and hypertension. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis was performed on data collected from 2345 pregnant women from 16 hospitals in five selected provinces in mainland China. Results: Prevalence of GDM was as follows: overall: 3.7%; pregnant women in the first pregnancy: 3.4%; pregnant women in the second pregnancy: 4.6%. Compared with early pregnancy women, late-stage pregnant women were more likely to have GDM (OR = 4.32, 95% CI (1.82, 10.27)). Compared with 18–25 years old pregnant women, women aged 36–45 years were more likely to have GDM (OR = 3.98, 95% CI (1.41, 11.28). Compared with non-hypertensive patients, hypertensive patients were more likely to have GDM (OR = 6.93, 95% CI (1.28, 37.64)). However, second pregnancy, high maternal BMI, prolonged screen time (TV-viewing time, computer-using time, and mobile-phone using time), insufficient and excessive sleep duration, poor sleep quality, smoking, and secondhand smoke exposure were not significantly associated with an increased risk of GDM. Conclusions: Women in the second pregnancy do not appear to predict an increased risk for developing GDM than women in the first pregnancy. High-risk groups of GDM included women in their late pregnancy, aged 36–45 years old, and with hypertension. The findings will contribute to an improved understanding of social and behavioral determinants of GDM in Chinese population and contribute to the development of health-prevention promotion interventions to address GDM. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Tackling Health Disparities for People Who Are Homeless? Start with Social Determinants
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1535; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121535 -
Abstract
Background: Homelessness is associated with enormous health inequalities, including shorter life expectancy, higher morbidity and greater usage of acute hospital services. Viewed through the lens of social determinants, homelessness is a key driver of poor health, but homelessness itself results from accumulated adverse
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Background: Homelessness is associated with enormous health inequalities, including shorter life expectancy, higher morbidity and greater usage of acute hospital services. Viewed through the lens of social determinants, homelessness is a key driver of poor health, but homelessness itself results from accumulated adverse social and economic conditions. Indeed, in people who are homeless, the social determinants of homelessness and health inequities are often intertwined, and long term homelessness further exacerbates poor health. Aggregated health service data can mask this, and case histories thus provide important insights. Methods: This paper presents three case histories of homeless patients seen at an inner city public hospital in Perth, Western Australia. The case histories draw on several data sources: hospital data, information collected from rough sleepers and clinical observations. Estimates of the cost to the health system of the observed hospital usage by the three patients are included. Findings: The case histories illustrate the interplay of social determinants of health in homelessness that help explain the high level of hospital usage by rough sleepers. The cumulative healthcare costs for the three individuals over a 33 months period were substantial. Hospital attendance plummeted even in the short term when housing needs were addressed. Conclusions: Treating homelessness as a combined health and social issue is critical to improving the abysmal health outcomes of people experiencing homelessness. In addition, the enormous economic costs of hospital care for people who are homeless can be reduced when housing and other social determinants are taken into account. Full article
Open AccessReview
WHO Environmental Noise Guidelines for the European Region: A Systematic Review on Environmental Noise and Annoyance
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1539; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121539 -
Abstract
Background: This paper describes a systematic review and meta-analyses on effects of environmental noise on annoyance. The noise sources include aircraft, road, and rail transportation noise as well as wind turbines and noise source combinations. Objectives: Update knowledge about effects of environmental
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Background: This paper describes a systematic review and meta-analyses on effects of environmental noise on annoyance. The noise sources include aircraft, road, and rail transportation noise as well as wind turbines and noise source combinations. Objectives: Update knowledge about effects of environmental noise on people living in the vicinity of noise sources. Methods: Eligible were published studies (2000–2014) providing comparable acoustical and social survey data including exposure-response functions between standard indicators of noise exposure and standard annoyance responses. The systematic literature search in 20 data bases resulted in 62 studies, of which 57 were used for quantitative meta-analyses. By means of questionnaires sent to the study authors, additional study data were obtained. Risk of bias was assessed by means of study characteristics for individual studies and by funnel plots to assess the risk of publication bias. Main Results: Tentative exposure-response relations for percent highly annoyed residents (%HA) in relation to noise levels for aircraft, road, rail, wind turbine and noise source combinations are presented as well as meta-analyses of correlations between noise levels and annoyance raw scores, and the OR for increase of %HA with increasing noise levels. Quality of evidence was assessed using the GRADE terminology. The evidence of exposure-response relations between noise levels and %HA is moderate (aircraft and railway) or low (road traffic and wind turbines). The evidence of correlations between noise levels and annoyance raw scores is high (aircraft and railway) or moderate (road traffic and wind turbines). The evidence of ORs representing the %HA increase by a certain noise level increase is moderate (aircraft noise), moderate/high (road and railway traffic), and low (wind turbines). Strengths and Limitations: The strength of the evidence is seen in the large total sample size encompassing the included studies (e.g., 18,947 participants in aircraft noise studies). Main limitations are due to the variance in the definition of noise levels and %HA. Interpretation: The increase of %HA in newer studies of aircraft, road and railway noise at comparable Lden levels of earlier studies point to the necessity of adjusting noise limit recommendations. Funding: The review was funded by WHO Europe. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Family Affluence Scale as an Indicator for Socioeconomic Status: Validation on Regional Income Differences in the Czech Republic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1540; doi:10.3390/ijerph14121540 -
Abstract
The Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children study (HBSC) uses the Family Affluence Scale (FAS) as a tool to identify the socioeconomic status of children and adolescents. Even though it is now widely applied in research studies, the external criterion validation of FAS has
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The Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children study (HBSC) uses the Family Affluence Scale (FAS) as a tool to identify the socioeconomic status of children and adolescents. Even though it is now widely applied in research studies, the external criterion validation of FAS has not been verified in terms of objective economic indicators in Central Europe. The aim of this study is to validate FAS in terms of disposable income per capita in 14 Czech administrative regions. Regional differences in the FAS score were analyzed using Pearson correlation and linear regression to measure the dependency of the aggregated mean of the FAS index at the regional level on data from the Czech HSBC survey carried out from April to June 2014 (n = 10,361). The data analysis has shown an overall positive correlation between the FAS index and regional disposable income (R = 0.77, p < 0.01). The regional disposable income per person could explain 59.7% of the variance in the FAS index (p < 0.01). By validating individual items, the authors identified three items with a significant correlation (p < 0.01): number of computers, dishwasher at home, and number of holidays. FAS seems to be a valid instrument to measure adolescents’ socioeconomic status. Full article