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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 16, Issue 6 (March-2 2019)

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Open AccessReview The State of Public Health Lead Policies: Implications for Urban Health Inequities and Recommendations for Health Equity
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1064; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061064 (registering DOI)
Received: 21 February 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 24 March 2019
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Abstract
Although lead has been removed from paint and gasoline sold in the U.S., lead exposures persist, with communities of color and residents in urban and low-income areas at greatest risk for exposure. The persistence of and inequities in lead exposures raise questions about [...] Read more.
Although lead has been removed from paint and gasoline sold in the U.S., lead exposures persist, with communities of color and residents in urban and low-income areas at greatest risk for exposure. The persistence of and inequities in lead exposures raise questions about the scope and implementation of policies that address lead as a public health concern. To understand the multi-level nature of lead policies, this paper and case study reviews lead policies at the national level, for the state of California, and for Santa Ana, CA, a dense urban city in Southern California. Through a community-academic partnership process, this analysis examines lead exposure pathways represented, the level of intervention (e.g., prevention, remediation), and whether policies address health inequities. Results indicate that most national and state policies focus on establishing hazardous lead exposure levels in settings and consumer products, disclosing lead hazards, and remediating lead paint. Several policies focus on mitigating exposures rather than primary prevention. The persistence of lead exposures indicates the need to identify sustainable solutions to prevent lead exposures in the first place. We close with recommendations to reduce lead exposures across the life course, consider multiple lead exposure pathways, and reduce and eliminate health inequities related to lead. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Disparities in Urban Areas)
Open AccessArticle ‘It’s Important to Make Changes.’ Insights about Motivators and Enablers of Healthy Lifestyle Modification from Young Aboriginal Men in Western Australia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1063; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061063 (registering DOI)
Received: 9 February 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 24 March 2019
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Abstract
Lifestyle modification can improve the health of people with or at risk of non-communicable diseases; however, initiating and maintaining positive health behaviours including healthy eating and physical activity is challenging. Young remote Aboriginal people who had successfully made significant healthy lifestyle changes were [...] Read more.
Lifestyle modification can improve the health of people with or at risk of non-communicable diseases; however, initiating and maintaining positive health behaviours including healthy eating and physical activity is challenging. Young remote Aboriginal people who had successfully made significant healthy lifestyle changes were sought out to explore how they achieved this success. Four Aboriginal men aged 20–35 years were identified and consented to participate. Their perceptions of motivation for change, strategies, and facilitators and barriers were explored through in-depth interviews. Themes developed from the interviews included self-efficacy, self-reliance, and increased knowledge and altered health beliefs underpinning change. Participants with diabetes were highly motivated to avoid diabetes complications and had a strong belief that their actions could achieve this. In a setting with high levels of disadvantage, participants had relatively favourable socioeconomic circumstances with solid social supports. These findings highlight that lifestyle modification programs that foster internal motivation, enhance key health knowledge, and modify health beliefs and risk perception are needed. Increasing diabetes awareness among at-risk young people is important, emphasising the largely preventable and potentially reversible nature of the condition. Broad health improvements and individual changes will be facilitated by equitable socioeconomic circumstances and environments that support health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rural and Remote Health)
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Open AccessArticle LPG Cars in a Car Park Environment—How to Make It Safe
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1062; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061062 (registering DOI)
Received: 27 February 2019 / Revised: 20 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 24 March 2019
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Abstract
Alternative and innovative fuel types are being introduced to power cars. These include liquified petroleum gas (LPG) gas and hydrogen energy sources. However, they also introduce new hazards, requiring revised thinking with respect to safety within car parking environments. One of the most [...] Read more.
Alternative and innovative fuel types are being introduced to power cars. These include liquified petroleum gas (LPG) gas and hydrogen energy sources. However, they also introduce new hazards, requiring revised thinking with respect to safety within car parking environments. One of the most significant dangers is accidental gas release from a car’s system, especially in underground car parks. Jet fan systems are widely used for ventilation of such enclosures, but currently their design is most often based on computational fluid dynamics (CFD) according to computer simulations that may not be relevant for such new fuels. This paper presents the results of full-scale tests which demonstrate the operational factors of jet fan ventilation systems, and assesses the conditions which can occur in a car park when a small volume of LPG is released. On the basis of measurements undertaken, Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) software was validated against the air velocity flows and LPG gas dispersion patterns. Finally, the simulations were used to demonstrate the effectiveness of systems in an actual car park, in the case of an accidental LPG car tank release. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
Open AccessArticle Do Healthy City Performance Awards Lead to Health in All Policies? A Case of Taiwan
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1061; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061061 (registering DOI)
Received: 23 January 2019 / Revised: 4 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 24 March 2019
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Abstract
The Healthy Cities (HC) Project, which was introduced by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1986, has been recognized as the best setting approach for health promotion. However, very few studies have addressed how to use HC approaches to establish public policies in [...] Read more.
The Healthy Cities (HC) Project, which was introduced by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1986, has been recognized as the best setting approach for health promotion. However, very few studies have addressed how to use HC approaches to establish public policies in non-health departments in cities. This paper describes the strategies for the HC Performance Awards used in Taiwan to draw attention from different departments and to sustain intersectoral collaboration for the purpose of establishing Health in All Policies (HiAP). The methods include: (1) setting up the Taiwan Healthy City Alliance; (2) establishing HC Innovation Performance Awards; (3) reviewing the award applications according to seven criteria; and (4) analyzing the topic content of the award applications. We collected 961 HC award applications during 2013–2016 to analyze their content. The results showed that the number of applications increased nearly every year while significantly more non-health departments applied for the awards compared to health departments (73.3% vs. 26.7%). The award rates of non-health departments have also increased twice from 13.9% in 2013 to 25.8% in 2016. By examining the topics of the award winners, we concluded that “HC Innovation Performance Awards” indeed provide a role and opportunity for political involvement, intersectoral collaboration, co-opetition and capacity building that is necessary for establishing health in all policies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthy Cities)
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Open AccessReview Waste Mismanagement in Developing Countries: A Review of Global Issues
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1060; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061060 (registering DOI)
Received: 6 March 2019 / Revised: 20 March 2019 / Accepted: 22 March 2019 / Published: 24 March 2019
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Abstract
Environmental contamination due to solid waste mismanagement is a global issue. Open dumping and open burning are the main implemented waste treatment and final disposal systems, mainly visible in low-income countries. This paper reviews the main impacts due to waste mismanagement in developing [...] Read more.
Environmental contamination due to solid waste mismanagement is a global issue. Open dumping and open burning are the main implemented waste treatment and final disposal systems, mainly visible in low-income countries. This paper reviews the main impacts due to waste mismanagement in developing countries, focusing on environmental contamination and social issues. The activity of the informal sector in developing cities was also reviewed, focusing on the main health risks due to waste scavenging. Results reported that the environmental impacts are pervasive worldwide: marine litter, air, soil and water contamination, and the direct interaction of waste pickers with hazardous waste are the most important issues. Many reviews were published in the scientific literature about specific waste streams, in order to quantify its effect on the environment. This narrative literature review assessed global issues due to different waste fractions showing how several sources of pollution are affecting the environment, population health, and sustainable development. The results and case studies presented can be of reference for scholars and stakeholders for quantifying the comprehensive impacts and for planning integrated solid waste collection and treatment systems, for improving sustainability at a global level. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hazardous Waste and Human Health)
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Open AccessComment No Established Link between Repeated Transient Chokes and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Related Effects. Comment on Lim, L.J.H. et al. Dangers of Mixed Martial Arts in the Development of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 254
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1059; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061059 (registering DOI)
Received: 2 February 2019 / Accepted: 19 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
This letter to the editor is in response to “Dangers of Mixed Martial Arts in the Development of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy” by authors Lim, Ho, and Ho, which was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (2019; 16: 254). [...] Read more.
This letter to the editor is in response to “Dangers of Mixed Martial Arts in the Development of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy” by authors Lim, Ho, and Ho, which was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (2019; 16: 254). This communication clarifies some potentially misleading word choices by the authors and addresses the insinuated, but not established, link between repeated transient choking episodes during martial arts training and a gradual decline in neuropsychiatric testing in the patient presented in the report. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Spatial and Heterogeneity Impacts of Population Urbanization on Fine Particulate (PM2.5) in the Yangtze River Economic Belt, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1058; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061058 (registering DOI)
Received: 31 January 2019 / Revised: 19 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
This paper addresses the effect of population urbanization on Fine Particulate (PM2.5) in the Yangtze River Economic Belt in China from 2006 to 2016 by employing PM2.5 remote sensing data and using the Stochastic Impacts by Regression on Population, Affluence and [...] Read more.
This paper addresses the effect of population urbanization on Fine Particulate (PM2.5) in the Yangtze River Economic Belt in China from 2006 to 2016 by employing PM2.5 remote sensing data and using the Stochastic Impacts by Regression on Population, Affluence and Technology (STIRPAT) model. The study contributes to the growing empirical literature by addressing heterogeneity, spillover, and dynamic effects in the dynamic spatial panel modeling process simultaneously. The empirical results show that population urbanization has a significant impact on PM2.5 with a positive spillover effect and a dynamic effect being detected and controlled. The heterogeneity effects of population urbanization on PM2.5 due to geographical positions show evidence of an obvious inverted U-shaped curve relationship in the upstream area and an increasing function curve in the midstream and downstream areas. The heterogeneity effects due to population urbanization levels show that an inverted N-shape curve relationship exists in low and medium urbanization level areas, while a U-shape curve relationship exists in high urbanization level areas. It is hoped that this study will inform the local governments about the heterogeneity of population urbanization and spillover effects of air pollution when addressing air pollution control. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Panel Study on Lung Function and Bronchial Inflammation among Children Exposed to Ambient SO2 from an Oil Refinery
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1057; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061057 (registering DOI)
Received: 11 February 2019 / Revised: 12 March 2019 / Accepted: 15 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
To determine the acute effects on respiratory function of children exposed to sulphur dioxide (SO2), we conducted two population-based longitudinal investigations near a major oil refinery. We enrolled 233 children, age 8–14, in Sarroch (Italy). The first study entailed five monthly [...] Read more.
To determine the acute effects on respiratory function of children exposed to sulphur dioxide (SO2), we conducted two population-based longitudinal investigations near a major oil refinery. We enrolled 233 children, age 8–14, in Sarroch (Italy). The first study entailed five monthly spirometric visits (Panel 5). In a subgroup, children positive for history of respiratory symptoms were tested weekly (20 times) with spirometry and fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) measurement (Panel 20). Baseline questionnaires and daily diaries were recorded. SO2, NO2, PM10 and O3 were measured by monitoring stations. Multiple regression models were fitted. Using a multipollutant model, we found that a 10 µg/m3 SO2 increase at lag0–2 days determined a percent variation (PV) of −3.37 (90% confidence interval, CI: −5.39; −1.30) for forced expiratory volume after one second (FEV1) in Panel 5 and a PV = −3.51 (90% CI: −4.77; −2.23) in Panel 20. We found a strong dose-response relation: 1-h SO2 peaks >200 µg/m3 at lag2 days = FEV1 PV −2.49. For FeNO, we found a PV = 38.12 (90% CI: 12.88; 69.01) for each 10 µg/m3 SO2 increase at 8-h time lag and a strong dose-response relation. Exposure to SO2 is strongly associated with reduction of lung function and an increase in airway inflammation. This new evidence of harmful effects of SO2 peaks should induce regulatory intervention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Children Health)
Open AccessArticle The Evaluation of Organizational Well-Being in An Italian Teaching Hospital Using the ANAC Questionnaire
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1056; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061056 (registering DOI)
Received: 14 February 2019 / Revised: 19 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
In Italy, the Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority (Autorità Nazionale Anti-corruzione—ANAC) has developed a questionnaire to assess the organizational well-being of employees within public agencies. The study aimed to explore the relationship among variables in the ANAC questionnaire: Several job resources (lack of discrimination, [...] Read more.
In Italy, the Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority (Autorità Nazionale Anti-corruzione—ANAC) has developed a questionnaire to assess the organizational well-being of employees within public agencies. The study aimed to explore the relationship among variables in the ANAC questionnaire: Several job resources (lack of discrimination, fairness, career and professional development, job autonomy, and organizational goals’ sharing) and outcomes of well-being at work, such as health and safety at work and sense of belonging. The research was carried out among workers in an Italian hospital in Northwest Italy (N = 1170), through an online self-report questionnaire. Data were grouped into two job categories: Clinical staff (N = 939) and non-clinical staff (N = 231). The hypothesized model was tested across the two groups through multi-group structural equation modeling. Results showed that health and safety at work and sense of belonging had significant positive relationships with the other variables; some differences emerged between the determinants of the two outcomes and among groups. The study aims to identify some reflections and suggestions regarding the assessment of well-being in the health care sector; implications for practice are identified to promote organizational well-being and health in organizations. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Integrating Germline and Somatic Mutation Information for the Discovery of Biomarkers in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1055; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061055 (registering DOI)
Received: 27 February 2019 / Revised: 19 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
Recent advances in high-throughput genotyping and the recent surge of next generation sequencing of the cancer genomes have enabled discovery of germline mutations associated with an increased risk of developing breast cancer and acquired somatic mutations driving the disease. Emerging evidence indicates that [...] Read more.
Recent advances in high-throughput genotyping and the recent surge of next generation sequencing of the cancer genomes have enabled discovery of germline mutations associated with an increased risk of developing breast cancer and acquired somatic mutations driving the disease. Emerging evidence indicates that germline mutations may interact with somatic mutations to drive carcinogenesis. However, the possible oncogenic interactions and cooperation between germline and somatic alterations in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) have not been characterized. The objective of this study was to investigate the possible oncogenic interactions and cooperation between genes containing germline and somatic mutations in TNBC. Our working hypothesis was that genes containing germline mutations associated with an increased risk developing breast cancer also harbor somatic mutations acquired during tumorigenesis, and that these genes are functionally related. We further hypothesized that TNBC originates from a complex interplay among and between genes containing germline and somatic mutations, and that these complex array of interacting genetic factors affect entire molecular networks and biological pathways which in turn drive the disease. We tested this hypothesis by integrating germline mutation information from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) with somatic mutation information on TNBC from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) using gene expression data from 110 patients with TNBC and 113 controls. We discovered a signature of 237 functionally related genes containing both germline and somatic mutations. We discovered molecular networks and biological pathways enriched for germline and somatic mutations. The top pathways included the hereditary breast cancer and role of BRCA1 in DNA damage response signaling pathways. In conclusion, this is the first large-scale and comprehensive analysis delineating possible oncogenic interactions and cooperation among and between genes containing germline and somatic mutations in TNBC. Genetic and somatic mutations, along with the genes discovered in this study, will require experimental functional validation in different ethnic populations. Functionally validated genetic and somatic variants will have important implications for the development of novel precision prevention strategies and discovery of prognostic markers in TNBC. Full article
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Open AccessArticle An Assessment of Long-Term Physical and Emotional Quality of Life of Persons Injured on 9/11/2001
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1054; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061054 (registering DOI)
Received: 15 February 2019 / Revised: 20 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
Fifteen years after the disaster, the World Trade Center Health Registry (Registry) conducted The Health and Quality of Life Survey (HQoL) assessing physical and mental health status among those who reported sustaining an injury on 11 September 2001 compared with non-injured persons. Summary [...] Read more.
Fifteen years after the disaster, the World Trade Center Health Registry (Registry) conducted The Health and Quality of Life Survey (HQoL) assessing physical and mental health status among those who reported sustaining an injury on 11 September 2001 compared with non-injured persons. Summary scores derived from the Short Form-12 served as study outcomes. United States (US) population estimates on the Physical Component Score (PCS-12) and Mental Component Score (MCS-12) were compared with scores from the HQoL and were stratified by Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and injury status. Linear regression models were used to estimate the association between both injury severity and PTSD and PCS-12 and MCS-12 scores. Level of injury severity and PTSD history significantly predicted poorer physical health (mean PCS-12). There was no significant difference between injury severity level and mental health (mean MCS-12). Controlling for other factors, having PTSD symptoms after 9/11 predicted a nearly 10-point difference in mean MCS-12 compared with never having PTSD. Injury severity and PTSD showed additive effects on physical and mental health status. Injury on 9/11 and a PTSD history were each associated with long-term decrements in physical health status. Injury did not predict long-term decrements in one’s mental health status. Although it is unknown whether physical wounds of the injury healed, our results suggest that traumatic injuries appear to have a lasting negative effect on perceived physical functioning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Long-Term Health Effects of the 9/11 Disaster)
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Open AccessArticle What Do Adolescents Learn from a 50 Minute Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation/Automated External Defibrillator Education in a Rural Area: A Pre-Post Design
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1053; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061053 (registering DOI)
Received: 12 February 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
Background: Literature indicates that patients who receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) from bystanders have a greater chance of surviving out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). A few evaluative studies involving CPR/AED education programs for rural adolescents have been initiated. This study [...] Read more.
Background: Literature indicates that patients who receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) from bystanders have a greater chance of surviving out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). A few evaluative studies involving CPR/AED education programs for rural adolescents have been initiated. This study aimed to examine the impact of a 50 min education program that combined CPR with AED training in two rural campuses. Methods: A quasi-experimental pre-post design was used. The 50 min CPR/AED training and individual performance using a Resusci Anne manikin was implemented with seventh grade students between August and December 2018. Results: A total of 336 participants were included in this study. The findings indicated that the 50 min CPR/AED education program significantly improved participant knowledge of emergency responses (p < 0.001), correct actions at home (p < 0.01) and outside (p < 0.001) during an emergency, and willingness to perform CPR if necessary (p < 0.001). Many participants described that “I felt more confident to perform CPR/AED,” and that “It reduces my anxiety and saves the valuable rescue time.” Conclusions: The brief education program significantly improved the immediate knowledge of cardiac emergency in participants and empowered them to act as first responders when they witnessed someone experiencing a cardiac arrest. Further studies should consider the study design and explore the effectiveness of such brief programs. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Staple Food Item Availability among Small Retailers in Providence, RI
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1052; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061052 (registering DOI)
Received: 28 February 2019 / Revised: 12 March 2019 / Accepted: 14 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
Inventory requirements for authorized Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) retailers have undergone several revisions to increase the availability of healthful foods. A proposed rule of 84 staple food items was not implemented due to concerns that stores would not withstand this expansion, resulting [...] Read more.
Inventory requirements for authorized Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) retailers have undergone several revisions to increase the availability of healthful foods. A proposed rule of 84 staple food items was not implemented due to concerns that stores would not withstand this expansion, resulting in a final rule requiring 36 items. This study used the Food Access Research Atlas data to characterize food provisions in 30 small retailers in areas with high and low proportions of SNAP and racial minority residents in Providence, Rhode Island (RI). Stores were assessed with an audit instrument to tally variety, perishability, and depth of stock of four staple food categories. Descriptive, analysis of variance, and chi-square analyses were performed. Across stores, 80% were compliant with the final rule, but 66.7% would need to expand their offerings to meet the proposed rule. Mean dairy variety was lowest among all categories (p < 0.05). Most stores met the perishability (92.3%) and depth-of-stock requirements (96.1%) under both rules. No difference was detected between areas with high and low proportions of SNAP and racial minority residents. Future expansion of requirements may increase healthful food availability without imposing undue burdens on retailers in Providence, RI, excluding increased requirements for dairy variety. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Effect of Heart Rate Variability Biofeedback Training on Mental Health of Pregnant and Non-Pregnant Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1051; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061051 (registering DOI)
Received: 15 February 2019 / Revised: 13 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
In this study, we examined the efficacy of heart rate variability (HRV)-biofeedback on stress and stress-related mental health problems in women. Furthermore, we examined whether the efficacy differed between pregnant and non-pregnant women. Fifty women (20 pregnant, 30 non-pregnant; mean age 31.6, SD [...] Read more.
In this study, we examined the efficacy of heart rate variability (HRV)-biofeedback on stress and stress-related mental health problems in women. Furthermore, we examined whether the efficacy differed between pregnant and non-pregnant women. Fifty women (20 pregnant, 30 non-pregnant; mean age 31.6, SD = 5.9) were randomized into an intervention (n = 29) or a waitlist condition (n = 21). All participants completed questionnaires on stress, anxiety, depressive symptoms, sleep, and psychological well-being on three occasions with 6-week intervals. Women in the intervention condition received HRV-biofeedback training between assessment 1 and 2, and women in the waitlist condition received the intervention between assessment 2 and 3. The intervention consisted of a 5-week HRV-biofeedback training program with weekly 60–90 min. sessions and daily exercises at home. Results indicated a statistically significant beneficial effect of HRV-biofeedback on psychological well-being for all women, and an additional statistically significant beneficial effect on anxiety complaints for pregnant women. No significant effect was found for the other stress-related complaints. These findings support the use of HRV-biofeedback as a stress-reducing technique among women reporting stress and related complaints in clinical practice to improve their well-being. Furthermore, it supports the use of this technique for reducing anxiety during pregnancy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Factors Shaping Attitudes of Medical Staff towards Acceptance of the Standard Precautions
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1050; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061050 (registering DOI)
Received: 19 February 2019 / Revised: 20 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
Standard precautions (SPs) guidelines are the minimum infection prevention practices that apply to all types of patient care, regardless of suspected or confirmed infection status of the patient. They are based on risk assessment, make use of common sense practices and personal protective [...] Read more.
Standard precautions (SPs) guidelines are the minimum infection prevention practices that apply to all types of patient care, regardless of suspected or confirmed infection status of the patient. They are based on risk assessment, make use of common sense practices and personal protective equipment that protect healthcare providers from infection and prevent the spread of infection from patient to patient. The aim of this study was to determine medical staff’s attitudes towards SPs and analyse the factors shaping these attitudes. The study was conducted using a questionnaire that comprised 25 statements describing the attitudes of medical personnel towards SPs. They were designed to pinpoint the factors that determine these attitudes. There were five factors identified that shape employees’ attitudes towards SPs: assessment of the situation, favourable patterns of behaviour, negative norms, unfavourable patterns of behaviour and rationalising. The study analysed 505 questionnaires filled in by hospital workers from five Polish cities. The majority of the respondents were women (92.1%), nurses (87.5%); the average age was 41.8 and the average seniority was 19.2 years. Over one-third of the respondents worked in non-surgical (36.4%) and surgical (31.6%) wards, 12.3% were employed in intensive care units (ICUs) and 8.9% in emergency departments (EDs). The variable significantly affecting the level of acceptance of SPs was seniority: initially the support was high, then it later decreased, with the greatest decrease occurring between the third and eighth year of work. The staff of medical wards and ICUs demonstrated significantly lower support for SPs and strong environmental impact on SPs perception; low degree of acceptance among medical ward staff correlated negatively with factors from the category “favourable patterns of behaviour”. The substantially strongest support for SPs was found in ED workers. The results indicate the need for continuous education of individual groups of workers concerning the application of SPs, but also the necessity to change the organisational culture in Polish hospitals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Care Sciences & Services)
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Open AccessArticle Relationships between Parent-Reported Parenting, Child-Perceived Parenting, and Children’s Mental Health in Taiwanese Children
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1049; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061049 (registering DOI)
Received: 7 March 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 19 March 2019 / Published: 23 March 2019
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Abstract
The current study examines the relationship between parents’ and children’s reports of parenting and their effects on children’s mental health symptoms. Six hundred and sixty-six parent-child dyads in Taiwan participated in this study. The parents and the children filled out the parenting questionnaires, [...] Read more.
The current study examines the relationship between parents’ and children’s reports of parenting and their effects on children’s mental health symptoms. Six hundred and sixty-six parent-child dyads in Taiwan participated in this study. The parents and the children filled out the parenting questionnaires, and the children also reported their general mental health. The results demonstrated that parental-reported and child-perceived parenting were positively correlated, but parents tended to report lower scores on authoritarian parenting and higher scores on Chinese parenting than did their children. There were also significant gender differences: The mothers reported higher authoritative parenting than did the fathers; and the boys perceived higher authoritarian and Chinese-culture specific parenting than did the girls. Moreover, the Chinese parenting had a negative effect on children’s mental health outcomes. Finally, our results showed that children’s perception of parenting had a stronger effect on children’s mental health symptoms than did parental reports on parenting, urging future research to include the children’s report when investigating the effects of parenting on children’s mental health outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Parenting and Offspring Health and Well-Being)
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Measuring the Prevalence of Adverse Childhood Experiences by Survey Research Methods
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1048; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061048 (registering DOI)
Received: 30 December 2018 / Revised: 6 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Background: Child maltreatment has been firmly established as a fundamental risk factor for adult health. However, its quantification poses many questions methodologically, psychologically, and culturally alike. We carried out the first nationally representative survey research in Hungary and in Central–Eastern Europe to [...] Read more.
Background: Child maltreatment has been firmly established as a fundamental risk factor for adult health. However, its quantification poses many questions methodologically, psychologically, and culturally alike. We carried out the first nationally representative survey research in Hungary and in Central–Eastern Europe to assess the prevalence of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) among adults. Methods: Data were collected by an opinion research company using a screening tool of the Adverse Childhood Experiences study. Results: 25% (n = 293) of adults reported any childhood adversity; 5% (n = 59) of them had four or more ACEs. The most prevalent forms of child maltreatment were emotional (5%, n = 59) and physical abuse (5%, n = 59), sexual abuse (1%, n = 12) being the least prevalent. The most frequent dysfunctional household condition was parental divorce or separation (13%, n = 153), followed by household substance abuse (11%, n = 129). Conclusions: Nationally representative surveys on ACEs found a range of overall prevalence of various forms of child maltreatment between 14.1 and 35.2% into which our results fall. Nevertheless, our survey most likely underestimates the prevalence of child maltreatment in Hungary, reflecting the impact of a host of factors influencing awareness. Survey research methods are appropriate to obtain nationally representative data on child maltreatment that not only contribute to designing interventions but can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of interventions to improve child and adult health in the long run. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue IJERPH: 15th Anniversary)
Open AccessArticle Immigrant–Native Differences in Sugar-Sweetened Beverage and Snack Consumption and Preventive Behaviors Associated with Severe Early Childhood Caries: A Large-Scale Survey in Taiwan
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1047; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061047 (registering DOI)
Received: 13 January 2019 / Revised: 11 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
This study assessed the differences between immigrants and natives in terms of combined effects of sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) or snack consumption and preventive behaviors for severe early childhood caries (SECC) through a large-scale survey of 31,565 native and 1046 immigrant child–parent pairs in [...] Read more.
This study assessed the differences between immigrants and natives in terms of combined effects of sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) or snack consumption and preventive behaviors for severe early childhood caries (SECC) through a large-scale survey of 31,565 native and 1046 immigrant child–parent pairs in Taiwan. Children aged 3–5 years underwent dental examinations, and parents completed structured questionnaires. Immigrants had a significantly higher SECC prevalence than native children (32.3% vs. 19.4%). A combined effect of SECC was observed in native children who did not receive assistance when brushing teeth at night before sleep and those who consumed SSBs more than four times weekly (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 4.8). Moreover, native children who did not use dental floss and who consumed snacks more than four times weekly had an aOR of 4.1 for SECC. The combined effects of children with immigrant parents who did not receive assistance when brushing their teeth at night before sleep and those who consumed snacks more than four times weekly had an aOR of 8.2 for SECC. The results suggest the necessity of cross-cultural caries prevention programs for immigrants. Parents must limit children’s SSB and snack intake, and implement preventive measures to reduce SECC development. Full article
Open AccessArticle Planning of a Health Emergency Disaster Risk Management Programme for a Chinese Ethnic Minority Community
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1046; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061046 (registering DOI)
Received: 30 January 2019 / Revised: 6 March 2019 / Accepted: 6 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Rural populations living in poverty are the most vulnerable to disaster. Despite this increased risk of recurrent disaster, previous disaster experience is not a good predictor for disaster preparedness in these populations. This was evidenced on 31 August 2012, when a major flood [...] Read more.
Rural populations living in poverty are the most vulnerable to disaster. Despite this increased risk of recurrent disaster, previous disaster experience is not a good predictor for disaster preparedness in these populations. This was evidenced on 31 August 2012, when a major flood occurred in Sichuan, China. A health needs assessment carried out in December 2012 showed that residents of Hongyan village, a Yi-minority community in Sichuan lacked disaster preparedness. This indicated that measures were necessary to improve Health Emergency Disaster Risk Management (Health-EDRM) in the community. Nutbeam’s planning model for health promotion was used to guide the development of a Health-EDRM programme at Hongyan Village, Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan. Relevant information was obtained from sources such as literature review, household surveys and stakeholder interviews. A team of stakeholders conducted an interactive workshop to train villagers on disaster preparedness in March 2014. Disaster kits and equipment for Oral Rehydration Solution preparation were handed out to villagers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health-Related Emergency Disaster Risk Management (Health-EDRM))
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Open AccessArticle Public Perceptions of Environmental Public Health Risks in the United States
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1045; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061045 (registering DOI)
Received: 25 February 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 19 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Understanding public perceptions about environmental health hazards, exposures, and health impacts can help environmental public health practitioners to target and prioritize community activities, policy needs, and communication strategies. The online cross-sectional 2013 summer wave of the ConsumerStyles survey sampled U.S. adults and used [...] Read more.
Understanding public perceptions about environmental health hazards, exposures, and health impacts can help environmental public health practitioners to target and prioritize community activities, policy needs, and communication strategies. The online cross-sectional 2013 summer wave of the ConsumerStyles survey sampled U.S. adults and used questions from the Centers for Disease Control’s Environmental Public Health Tracking Program to measure public awareness of governmental efforts to track environmental exposures and links to health impacts, as well as perceptions of environmental health issues. Unadjusted and adjusted logistic regressions examined the associations between demographic characteristics and level of awareness of government environmental public health efforts or level of concern about health risks associated with environmental pollutants. Responses were received from 4033 participants, yielding a response rate of 66.0%. More than half of respondents (57.8%) noted concerns about health risks from environmental pollutants. More than one-third (40.0%) of respondents reported awareness of government efforts. Nearly 40% of respondents felt that none of the health impacts listed in the survey were related to environmental issues. Multiple logistic regression models showed that non-Hispanic blacks, other races, females, people with a college or higher education, and people living in the Midwest or South regions were more likely than their counterparts to be concerned about how the environment affects their health. Future work should focus on improving risk communication, filling the information gap on environmental health issues, and understanding how perceptions change over time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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Open AccessArticle Protective Effects of Nargenicin A1 against Tacrolimus-Induced Oxidative Stress in Hirame Natural Embryo Cells
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1044; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061044 (registering DOI)
Received: 16 February 2019 / Revised: 14 March 2019 / Accepted: 15 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Tacrolimus is widely used as an immunosuppressant to reduce the risk of rejection after organ transplantation, but its cytotoxicity is problematic. Nargenicin A1 is an antibiotic extracted from Nocardia argentinensis and is known to have antioxidant activity, though its mode of action is [...] Read more.
Tacrolimus is widely used as an immunosuppressant to reduce the risk of rejection after organ transplantation, but its cytotoxicity is problematic. Nargenicin A1 is an antibiotic extracted from Nocardia argentinensis and is known to have antioxidant activity, though its mode of action is unknown. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the protective effects of nargenicin A1 on DNA damage and apoptosis induced by tacrolimus in hirame natural embryo (HINAE) cells. We found that reduced HINAE cell survival by tacrolimus was due to the induction of DNA damage and apoptosis, both of which were prevented by co-treating nargenicin A1 or N-acetyl-l-cysteine, a reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger, with tacrolimus. In addition, apoptosis induction by tacrolimus was accompanied by increases in ROS generation and decreases in adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels caused by mitochondrial dysfunction, and these changes were significantly attenuated in the presence of nargenicin A1, which further indicated tacrolimus-induced apoptosis involved an oxidative stress-associated mechanism. Furthermore, nargenicin A1 suppressed tacrolimus-induced B-cell lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2) down-regulation, Bax up-regulation, and caspase-3 activation. Collectively, these results demonstrate that nargenicin A1 protects HINAE cells against tacrolimus-induced DNA damage and apoptosis, at least in part, by scavenging ROS and thus suppressing the mitochondrial-dependent apoptotic pathway. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Global Health)
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Open AccessArticle Concurrent Drought and Temperature Stress in Rice—A Possible Result of the Predicted Climate Change: Effects on Yield Attributes, Eating Characteristics, and Health Promoting Compounds
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1043; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061043 (registering DOI)
Received: 19 February 2019 / Revised: 8 March 2019 / Accepted: 19 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Despite the likely increasing co-occurrence of drought and heat stress, not least in equatorial regions, due to climate change, little is known about the combinational effect of these stresses on rice productivity and quality. This study evaluated the impact of simultaneous drought and [...] Read more.
Despite the likely increasing co-occurrence of drought and heat stress, not least in equatorial regions, due to climate change, little is known about the combinational effect of these stresses on rice productivity and quality. This study evaluated the impact of simultaneous drought and temperature stress on growth, grain yield, and quality characteristics of seven rice cultivars from Rwanda, grown in climate chambers. Two temperature ranges—23/26 °C night/day and 27/30 °C night/day—together with single or repeated drought treatments, were applied during various plant developmental stages. Plant development and yield were highly influenced by drought, while genotype impacted the quality characteristics. The combination of a high temperature with drought at the seedling and tillering stages resulted in zero panicles for all evaluated cultivars. The cultivar ‘Intsindagirabigega’ was most tolerant to drought, while ‘Zong geng’ was the most sensitive. A “stress memory” was recorded for ‘Mpembuke’ and ‘Ndamirabahinzi’, and these cultivars also had a high content of bioactive compounds, while ’Jyambere’ showed a high total protein content. Thus, climate change may severely impact rice production. The exploitation of genetic diversity to breed novel rice cultivars that combine drought and heat stress tolerance with high nutritional values is a must to maintain food security. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climate Change and Health)
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Open AccessArticle Factors Associated with Leptospirosis in Domestic Cattle in Salakphra Wildlife Sanctuary, Thailand
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1042; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061042 (registering DOI)
Received: 29 January 2019 / Revised: 14 March 2019 / Accepted: 18 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Leptospirosis found in cattle (Bos taurus indicus) has potentially increased in economic impact. The objective was to investigate the factors associated with leptospirosis in cattle in the protected area. We investigated the seroprevalence of leptospirosis in cattle in Salakphra Wildlife Sanctuary, [...] Read more.
Leptospirosis found in cattle (Bos taurus indicus) has potentially increased in economic impact. The objective was to investigate the factors associated with leptospirosis in cattle in the protected area. We investigated the seroprevalence of leptospirosis in cattle in Salakphra Wildlife Sanctuary, Thailand. Serum was collected to investigate the seroprevalence by agglutination test and their associated factors. From a total of 513 samples, antibodies against Leptospira were detected in 92.2% of samples. Within a total of 42 herds, the serovar with the highest prevalence was L interrogans serovar Tarassovi (92.9%). Most leptospirosis was found in medium-sized herds with the highest concentrations in cattle farms close to cities (52.4%, p < 0.05). Seroprevalence was associated with herd size, raising pattern in the dry and wet seasons, grazing distance, number of years that cattle were kept in the farm, the introduction of new cattle into the farm, and keeping some pets in the farm. The results of the study suggest that keeping cattle in larger herds, raising pattern and distance, keeping period, and introducing new cattle and having pets impart potential risk of increasing leptospirosis exposure. These results indicate that cattle are important hosts of Leptospira in Thailand and may act as sentinels of Leptospira infection for wildlife and people in the protected areas. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Combined Toxicity of Nitro-Substituted Benzenes and Zinc to Photobacterium Phosphoreum: Evaluation and QSAR Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1041; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061041 (registering DOI)
Received: 17 February 2019 / Revised: 16 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
The single toxicity (IC50) of zinc (Zn) and 11 nitro-substituted benzenes to Photobacterium phosphoreum were determined, respectively. On basis of single toxicity, the joint toxicity of binary mixtures of Zn and 11 nitro-substituted benzenes at different Zn concentrations of 0.2 IC [...] Read more.
The single toxicity (IC50) of zinc (Zn) and 11 nitro-substituted benzenes to Photobacterium phosphoreum were determined, respectively. On basis of single toxicity, the joint toxicity of binary mixtures of Zn and 11 nitro-substituted benzenes at different Zn concentrations of 0.2 IC50, 0.5 IC50, and 0.8 IC50 were measured. The joint toxicity was evaluated by toxic unit (TU) and additive index (AI) methods. The results indicated that the joint toxicity was not only depending on the Zn concentrations but also on the substituted groups of nitro-substituted benzenes. The quantitative structure-activity relation (QSAR) equations were developed and the results showed that the toxicity of nitro-substituted benzenes has different joint effect at the different Zn concentrations. At the Zn concentration of 0.2 IC50, the binary joint effects were mainly antagonism and the joint toxicity was negatively related to descriptors called VE2_B(p) and TIC3. At the Zn concentration of 0.5 IC50 and 0.8 IC50, the binary joint effects were mainly antagonism and simple addition, and the joint toxicity was related to the same descriptor Eig06_ AEA(dm). It indicated that the joint toxic actions were similar when combined at the medium and high concentrations of Zn. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Primary Cooking Fuel Choice and Respiratory Health Outcomes among Women in Charge of Household Cooking in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso: Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1040; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061040 (registering DOI)
Received: 1 November 2018 / Revised: 20 December 2018 / Accepted: 29 December 2018 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Background: Approximately 3 billion people, worldwide, rely primarily on biomass for cooking. This study aimed to investigate the association between respiratory symptoms among women in charge of household cooking and the type of fuel used for cooking. Methods: A community-based cross-sectional [...] Read more.
Background: Approximately 3 billion people, worldwide, rely primarily on biomass for cooking. This study aimed to investigate the association between respiratory symptoms among women in charge of household cooking and the type of fuel used for cooking. Methods: A community-based cross-sectional survey was conducted. A total of 1705 women that were randomly selected, completed the survey. We also performed a bivariate and a multivariate analysis to verify the possible associations between respiratory symptoms in women in charge of household cooking and the type of cooking fuel used. Results: Dry cough, breathing difficulties, and throat irritation frequencies were statistically high in biomass fuel users when compared to liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) users. It was also the case for some chronic respiratory symptoms, such as sputum production, shortness of breath, wheezing, wheezing with dyspnea, wheezing without a cold, waking up with shortness of breath, waking up with coughing attacks, and waking up with breathing difficulty. After adjustment for the respondents’ and households’ characteristics; dry cough, breathing difficulties, sneezing, nose tingling, throat irritation, chronic sputum production, wheezing, wheezing with dyspnea, wheezing without a cold, waking up with shortness of breath, waking up with coughing attacks, and waking up with breathing difficulty were symptoms that remained associated to biomass fuel compared to LPG. Women who used charcoal reported the highest proportion of all the chronic respiratory symptoms compared to the firewood users. However, this difference was not statistically significant except for the wheezing, waking up with coughing attacks, and waking up with breath difficulty, after adjustment. Conclusion: Exposure to biomass smoke is responsible for respiratory health problems in women. Charcoal, which is often considered as a clean fuel compared to other biomass fuels and often recommended as an alternative to firewood, also presents health risks, including increased respiratory morbidity in women. Effective and efficient energy policies are needed to accelerate the transition to clean and sustainable energies. Full article
Open AccessArticle A Two-Stage Decision Framework for Resolving Brownfield Conflicts
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1039; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061039 (registering DOI)
Received: 21 February 2019 / Revised: 16 March 2019 / Accepted: 17 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Based on the Graph Model of Conflict Resolution (GMCR), a two-stage decision framework is developed to reveal the essence of brownfield incidents and facilitate the resolution of brownfield conflicts caused by the incidents. More particularly, the forward GMCR is utilized in Stage I, [...] Read more.
Based on the Graph Model of Conflict Resolution (GMCR), a two-stage decision framework is developed to reveal the essence of brownfield incidents and facilitate the resolution of brownfield conflicts caused by the incidents. More particularly, the forward GMCR is utilized in Stage I, the negotiation stage, to simulate the evolution of a Brownfield Conflict (BC) and predict its potential resolution via stability analysis. If no acceptable equilibrium can be obtained, the BC progresses into Stage II, the third-party-intervention stage, where the inverse GMCR is used to assist a third party in intervening the conflict to achieve a desirable outcome. To illustrate the practicality of this framework, a recent BC that occurred in Changzhou, China, is taken as a case study. Invaluable insights are provided through the computation and investigation of the corresponding preference relationships. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Assessing Spatial Accessibility to Hierarchical Urban Parks by Multi-Types of Travel Distance in Shenzhen, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1038; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061038 (registering DOI)
Received: 19 February 2019 / Revised: 18 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Urban green spaces play a critical role in public health and human wellbeing for urban residents. Due to the uneven spatial distribution of urban green spaces in most of cities, the issue of the disparity between supply and demand has aroused public concern. [...] Read more.
Urban green spaces play a critical role in public health and human wellbeing for urban residents. Due to the uneven spatial distribution of urban green spaces in most of cities, the issue of the disparity between supply and demand has aroused public concern. In a case of Shenzhen, a modified Gaussian-based two-step floating catchment area (2SFCA) method is adopted to evaluate the disparity between park provision and the demanders in terms of accessibility at hierarchical levels under four types of distance (e.g., Euclidean distance, walking distance, bicycling distance, and driving distance), which is well aligned with hierarchical systems in urban green spaces in urban planning practice. By contrast and correlation analysis, among the four types of distance, the statistical correlations are relatively high between Euclidean distance and the other three. Nonetheless, the pattern of spatial accessibility under different type of travel distance is apparently variant. Accessibility calculated by Euclidean distance is overestimated relative to that of the other three, while the pattern of walking distance and bicycling distance is similar to each other. The choice of type of distance is worthy of caution when evaluating spatial accessibility by 2SFCA method. Results show that the accessibility to parks at all hierarchical levels is high particularly, particularly at the natural level. However, the disparity between the supply and demand is significant. The percentage of communities that have high population density but low park accessibility is over 40% (equivalent to approximately 55% of the population). The finding may provide implications on access to urban greens paces for urban planners and authorities to develop effective planning strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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Open AccessArticle Organic Food Purchases in an Emerging Market: The Influence of Consumers’ Personal Factors and Green Marketing Practices of Food Stores
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1037; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061037 (registering DOI)
Received: 27 February 2019 / Revised: 20 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
The consumption of food has a significant impact on the environment, individuals and public health. This study aims to investigate the integrative effects of consumers’ personal and situational factors on their attitude and purchase behavior of organic meat. The consumption of this product [...] Read more.
The consumption of food has a significant impact on the environment, individuals and public health. This study aims to investigate the integrative effects of consumers’ personal and situational factors on their attitude and purchase behavior of organic meat. The consumption of this product has been widely regarded as contributing towards sustainable food practices. The study was conducted in an emerging market economy, i.e., Vietnam. Data were collected using a customized and validated survey instrument from a sample of 609 organic meat consumers at four food outlets in Hanoi. The findings suggested that consumers’ concerns regarding the environment, health, food safety and their knowledge of organic food, all significantly impacted their attitude towards the purchase behavior of organic meat. Interestingly, their positive attitude did not necessarily translate into their actual purchase of organic meat. Additionally, food stores’ green marketing practices significantly enhanced consumers’ actual purchase behavior. Conversely, premium prices of organic meat were certainly a deterrent for the actual purchase of organic meat. The findings of this study have several important implications for organic food producers, retailers, policy makers and socio-environmental organizations that seek to develop intervention strategies aimed at increasing organic meat consumption in Vietnam. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
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Open AccessReview Rethinking the Dental Amalgam Dilemma: An Integrated Toxicological Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1036; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061036 (registering DOI)
Received: 29 January 2019 / Revised: 21 February 2019 / Accepted: 4 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
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Abstract
Mercury (Hg) has been identified as one of the most toxic nonradioactive materials known to man. Although mercury is a naturally occurring element, anthropogenic mercury is now a major worldwide concern and is an international priority toxic pollutant. It also comprises one of [...] Read more.
Mercury (Hg) has been identified as one of the most toxic nonradioactive materials known to man. Although mercury is a naturally occurring element, anthropogenic mercury is now a major worldwide concern and is an international priority toxic pollutant. It also comprises one of the primary constituents of dental amalgam fillings. Even though dental mercury amalgams have been used for almost two centuries, its safety has never been tested or proven in the United States by any regulatory agency. There has been an ongoing debate regarding the safety of its use since 1845, and many studies conclude that its use exposes patients to troublesome toxicity. In this review, we present in an objective way the danger of dental amalgam to human health based on current knowledge. This dilemma is addressed in terms of an integrated toxicological approach by focusing on four mayor issues to show how these interrelate to create the whole picture: (1) the irrefutable constant release of mercury vapor from dental amalgams which is responsible for individual chronic exposure, (2) the evidence of organic mercury formation from dental amalgam in the oral cavity, (3) the effect of mercury exposure on gene regulation in human cells which supports the intrinsic genetic susceptibility to toxicant and, finally, (4) the availability of recent epidemiological data supporting the link of dental amalgams to diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Heavy Metal Pollution and Health Risk Assessment)
Open AccessArticle Plasma Soluble Urokinase-Type Plasminogen Activator Receptor Level as a Predictor of the Severity of Community-Acquired Pneumonia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1035; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061035
Received: 15 February 2019 / Revised: 11 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 21 March 2019
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Abstract
The urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) mediates various cellular activities and is involved in proteolysis, angiogenesis, and inflammation. The objective of this study was to investigate the association between soluble uPAR (suPAR) levels and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) severity. A commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay [...] Read more.
The urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) mediates various cellular activities and is involved in proteolysis, angiogenesis, and inflammation. The objective of this study was to investigate the association between soluble uPAR (suPAR) levels and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) severity. A commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was performed to measure the plasma suPAR levels in 67 healthy controls and 75 patients with CAP. Our results revealed that plasma suPAR levels were significantly elevated in patients with CAP compared with the controls, and antibiotic treatment was effective in reducing suPAR levels. The plasma suPAR levels were correlated with the severity of CAP based on the pneumonia severity index (PSI) scores. Furthermore, lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulation significantly increased uPAR expression in RAW 264.7 macrophages. In conclusion, plasma suPAR levels may play a role in the clinical assessment of CAP severity; these findings may provide information on new targets for treatment of CAP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Perspectives in Respiratory Diseases)
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