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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 19, Issue 1 (January-1 2022) – 615 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The respiratory route is the main mode of transmission for the virus causing COVID-19. There is uncertainty about the viral loads of infectious individuals required to transmit SARS-CoV-2 via aerosol. To perform an infection risk assessment for airborne transmission and to introduce appropriate preventive measures, it is necessary to know the amount of aerosol particles produced by an infected person during various activities, how many viruses stick to the particles, and how many viruses are necessary to cause an infection. Thus, there is a lack of both quantification of the influencing parameters and simple-to-use models for assessing the risk of infection in practice, which further quantify the influence of nonmedical preventive measures. We have performed a close look at the influencing parameters and suggest a simple approach for practical recommendations. View this paper.
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Article
Impact of Parents’ Attitudes on Learning Ineffectiveness: The Mediating Role of Parental Self-Efficacy
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 615; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010615 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 6062
Abstract
Parents play a key role in children’s home-based online learning. This study constructed a mediating model to explore the mechanism of parents’ attitudes toward online learning (PATOL) and the perceived online learning ineffectiveness (POLI) of their children and to investigate the mediating effect [...] Read more.
Parents play a key role in children’s home-based online learning. This study constructed a mediating model to explore the mechanism of parents’ attitudes toward online learning (PATOL) and the perceived online learning ineffectiveness (POLI) of their children and to investigate the mediating effect of parents’ self-efficacy (PSE) on PATOL and POLI. Valid questionnaire data from 18,170 middle school parents were collected by snowball sampling. The hypotheses proposed in this study were verified by using Model 4 of PROCESS. The results showed that: when controlling parents’ gender, age, and children’s length of online learning in regression equations, (1) both PATOL and PSE were negatively related to POLI, while PATOL was positively related to PSE; (2) PSE played a mediating role in the relationship between PATOL and POLI. This study also discusses how to support parents to assist children’s home-based online learning. Schools should carry out some necessary training for parents. Parents can get guidance and advice on how to create an environment conducive to children’s online learning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neuroscience and Technology Based Approaches for Education)
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Systematic Review
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Stress Reduction in Family Carers of People Living with Dementia: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 614; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010614 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3193
Abstract
The prevalence of dementia is increasing and the care needs of people living with dementia are rising. Family carers of people living with dementia are a high-risk group for psychological and physical health comorbidities. Mindfulness-based interventions such as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy show potential [...] Read more.
The prevalence of dementia is increasing and the care needs of people living with dementia are rising. Family carers of people living with dementia are a high-risk group for psychological and physical health comorbidities. Mindfulness-based interventions such as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy show potential for reducing stress experienced by family carers of people living with dementia. This study aims to systematically assess the efficacy of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy in reducing stress experienced by family carers of people living with dementia. Electronic databases including MEDLINE, APA PsycINFO, EMBASE, CINAHL, Scopus, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, AMED, ICTRP, and ALOIS were searched for relevant studies up to August 2020. All types of intervention studies were included. Quantitative findings were explored. Seven studies were eligible for inclusion. The analysis showed that there was a statistically significant reduction in self-rated carer stress in four studies for the mindfulness-based cognitive therapy group compared to controls. One study that was adequately powered also showed reductions in carer burden, depression, and anxiety compared to control. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy appears to be a potentially effective intervention for family carers of people living with dementia, but large, high-quality randomized controlled trials in ethnically diverse populations are required to evaluate its effectiveness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diagnosis and Healthcare for Dementias)
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Article
The Influence of Acute Sprint Interval Training on Cognitive Performance of Healthy Younger Adults
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 613; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010613 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2357
Abstract
There is considerable evidence showing that an acute bout of physical exercises can improve cognitive performance, but the optimal exercise characteristics (e.g., exercise type and exercise intensity) remain elusive. In this regard, there is a gap in the literature to which extent sprint [...] Read more.
There is considerable evidence showing that an acute bout of physical exercises can improve cognitive performance, but the optimal exercise characteristics (e.g., exercise type and exercise intensity) remain elusive. In this regard, there is a gap in the literature to which extent sprint interval training (SIT) can enhance cognitive performance. Thus, this study aimed to investigate the effect of a time-efficient SIT, termed as “shortened-sprint reduced-exertion high-intensity interval training” (SSREHIT), on cognitive performance. Nineteen healthy adults aged 20–28 years were enrolled and assessed for attentional performance (via the d2 test), working memory performance (via Digit Span Forward/Backward), and peripheral blood lactate concentration immediately before and 10 min after an SSREHIT and a cognitive engagement control condition (i.e., reading). We observed that SSREHIT can enhance specific aspects of attentional performance, as it improved the percent error rate (F%) in the d-2 test (t (18) = −2.249, p = 0.037, d = −0.516), which constitutes a qualitative measure of precision and thoroughness. However, SSREHIT did not change other measures of attentional or working memory performance. In addition, we observed that the exercise-induced increase in the peripheral blood lactate levels correlated with changes in attentional performance, i.e., the total number of responses (GZ) (rm = 0.70, p < 0.001), objective measures of concentration (SKL) (rm = 0.73, p < 0.001), and F% (rm = −0.54, p = 0.015). The present study provides initial evidence that a single bout of SSREHIT can improve specific aspects of attentional performance and conforming evidence for a positive link between cognitive improvements and changes in peripheral blood lactate levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Health Outcomes of High-Intensity Interval Exercise and Training)
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Article
Female Sexual Dysfunction and Pelvic Floor Muscle Function Associated with Systemic Sclerosis: A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 612; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010612 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1812
Abstract
Only a few studies have addressed sexual health in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). This study aimed to compare female sexual function and pelvic floor muscle function in SSc patients with healthy controls (HC) matched by age, and to identify the potential implications [...] Read more.
Only a few studies have addressed sexual health in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). This study aimed to compare female sexual function and pelvic floor muscle function in SSc patients with healthy controls (HC) matched by age, and to identify the potential implications of clinical features on sexual function. Our cohort included 90 women with SSc and 90 HC aged 18–70 years that completed six well-established and validated questionnaires assessing sexual function (Brief Index of Sexual Function for Women, Female Sexual Function Index, Sexual Quality of Life Questionnaire–Female, Sexual Function Questionnaire) and pelvic floor function (Pelvic Floor Impact Questionnaire–Short Form 7 and Pelvic Organ Prolapse/Urinary Incontinence Sexual Questionnaire Short Form). Results from women with SSc and HC were contrasted and correlated with relevant clinical features. The prevalence of female sexual dysfunction was 73% in SSc patients (vs. 31% in HC). Women with SSc reported significantly worse pelvic floor function and sexual function than HC. Impaired sexual function was correlated with higher disease activity, the presence of dyspnea and interstitial lung disease, increased systemic inflammation, reduced physical activity, functional disability, more severe depression, more pronounced fatigue, and impaired quality of life. We demonstrate that sexual dysfunction is highly prevalent among women with SSc. This aspect of the disease deserves more attention both in clinical care and at the level of international research collaboration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sexual Functioning, Sexual Satisfaction and Health)
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Article
Personal Exposure to Fine Particles (PM2.5) in Northwest Africa: Case of the Urban City of Bamako in Mali
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 611; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010611 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1725
Abstract
Personal exposure to particulate matter (PM) from anthropogenic activities is a major concern in African countries, including Mali. However, knowledge of particulates is scant. This study was undertaken to characterize personal exposure to PM2.5 microns or less in diameter (PM2.5) [...] Read more.
Personal exposure to particulate matter (PM) from anthropogenic activities is a major concern in African countries, including Mali. However, knowledge of particulates is scant. This study was undertaken to characterize personal exposure to PM2.5 microns or less in diameter (PM2.5) in the city of Bamako in Mali. The exposure to PM2.5, through daily activities was observed from September 2020 to February 2021. Participants wore palm-sized optical PM2.5 sensors on their chest during their daily activities. The exposure levels in four different groups of residents were investigated in relation to their daily activities. The variation in PM2.5 concentration was measured during different activities in different microenvironments, and the main sources of exposure were identified. The highest average 10 min concentrations were observed at home and in bedrooms, while the participants were using specific products typically used in Africa, Asia, and South America that included insecticides (IST; 999 µg/m3) and incense (ICS; 145 µg/m3), followed by traffic (216 µg/m3) and cooking (150 µg/m3). The lowest average 10 min concentrations were also observed in the same microenvironment lacking IST or ICS (≤14 µg/m3). With no use of specific products, office workers and students were the least exposed, and drivers and cooks were the most exposed. The concentrations are up to 7.5 and 3 times higher than the World Health Organization’s yearly and daily recommended exposure levels, respectively, indicating the need to promptly elaborate and apply effective mitigation strategies to improve air quality and protect public health. This study highlights the importance of indoor air pollution sources related to culture and confirms previous studies on urban outdoor air pollution sources, especially in developing countries. The findings could be applied to cities other than Bamako, as similar practices and lifestyles are common in different cultures. Full article
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Review
The Great Lockdown in the Wake of COVID-19 and Its Implications: Lessons for Low and Middle-Income Countries
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 610; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010610 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2906
Abstract
Concern for public health has been growing with the increasing volume of cases of COVID-19 in India. To combat this pandemic, India has implemented nationwide lockdowns, and unlocking phases continue with certain restrictions in different parts of the country. The lockdown has required [...] Read more.
Concern for public health has been growing with the increasing volume of cases of COVID-19 in India. To combat this pandemic, India has implemented nationwide lockdowns, and unlocking phases continue with certain restrictions in different parts of the country. The lockdown has required people to adopt social-distance measures to minimize contacts in order to reduce the risks of additional infection. Nevertheless, the lockdown has already impacted economic activities and other dimensions of the health of individuals and society. Although many countries have helped their people through advanced welfare protection networks and numerous support aids, several emerging economies face specific difficulties to adapt to the pandemic due to vulnerable communities and scarce resources. However, certain lower-income countries need more rigorous analysis to implement more effective strategies to combat COVID-19. Accordingly, the current systematic review addresses the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns in India in relation to health and the economy. This work also provides further information on health inequalities, eco-nomic and social disparities in the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns and also contributes pragmatic suggestions for overcoming these challenges. These observations will be useful to the relevant local and national officials for improving and adopting novel strategies to face lockdown challenges Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Burden of COVID-19 in Different Countries)
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Article
Self-Criticism in In-Work Poverty: The Mediating Role of Social Support in the Era of Flexibility
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 609; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010609 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1848
Abstract
In-work poverty reflects situations of income below the poverty threshold among employed people, involving a deterioration of wellbeing. The International Labour Organization prioritises this situation, which in countries such as Spain, Germany or Italy reaches rates of 11.8%, 10.6% and 11.8%, respectively. Within [...] Read more.
In-work poverty reflects situations of income below the poverty threshold among employed people, involving a deterioration of wellbeing. The International Labour Organization prioritises this situation, which in countries such as Spain, Germany or Italy reaches rates of 11.8%, 10.6% and 11.8%, respectively. Within a context of flexibility, the occupational situation tends to be understood as an individual responsibility, which is why this study analyses the increase in self-criticism in these situations, and the role of social support in this relationship. The mediation of social support in the manifestation of self-criticism among people experiencing in-work poverty is analysed. The participants were 1430 employed people, grouped into those in a situation of poverty and those who are not. The results show that people in a situation of in-work poverty present a higher score in self-criticism and lower in social support. Social support is a mediating variable that prevents the manifestation of self-criticism. Lastly, a gender analysis shows that women experience this relationship more intensely. These findings enable a critical assessment of the activation policies that only take an individual approach. As an alternative, we propose strengthening interventions that foster social support, particularly among women. Full article
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Article
Seasonal and Spatial Variation in Dissolved Heavy Metals in Liaodong Bay, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 608; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010608 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1351
Abstract
Spatial–seasonal variations in dissolved heavy metals in surface seawater were analyzed based on surveys at 87 sampling sites and water samples from six rivers across Liaodong Bay. The concentrations of copper (Cu), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), and zinc (Zn) had ranges of 0.20–40.00 [...] Read more.
Spatial–seasonal variations in dissolved heavy metals in surface seawater were analyzed based on surveys at 87 sampling sites and water samples from six rivers across Liaodong Bay. The concentrations of copper (Cu), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), and zinc (Zn) had ranges of 0.20–40.00 (5.45 ± 5.67), 0.51–33.64 (4.68 ± 3.93), 0.03–13.47 (2.22 ± 2.01), and 0.50–80.09 μg/L (14.22 ± 16.32), respectively, throughout the four seasons of 2020. The trace metal concentration showed a spatial gradient of high to low from river to estuary and from inshore to offshore areas. A combination of pollution levels and marine sensitivity was employed to assess the pollution degree of the heavy metals. As a whole, the single pollution factors of trace metals in Liaodong Bay were ranged in the order Pb > Zn > Cu > Cd. The total pollution degree was relatively high in autumn and summer due to increased riverine inputs after the rainy season, while relatively low in spring and winter. These findings provide baseline data for future targeting policies to protect marine environments in Liaodong Bay. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Evaluation and Health Impact of Toxic Metals Pollution)
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Article
Social Environment and Healthy Investment Behavior: Joint Influence of Culture and Institution on China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 607; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010607 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1389
Abstract
The influence of the social environment on healthy investment behavior is a vital research topic. This paper focuses on foreign direct investment (FDI) as an important part of its broad impact in improving the level of capital circulation and diversifying the non-systemic risk [...] Read more.
The influence of the social environment on healthy investment behavior is a vital research topic. This paper focuses on foreign direct investment (FDI) as an important part of its broad impact in improving the level of capital circulation and diversifying the non-systemic risk of a single country portfolio. Using data from 35 countries on direct investment in China, we find that the impact of the social environment on healthy investment behavior is mainly reflected in investors’ resistance to cultural distance and their benefit compensation across institutional distance. In addition, their joint influence is still negative, dominated by cultural distance, which can still verify that institutional distance mitigates the negative effect of cultural distance on FDI. Therefore, in order to promote international healthy investment behavior, it is feasible to improve both the mitigation effect of the institution in the short term and promote the level of cultural exchange in the long term, according to the research results of this paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environment and Behavior)
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Article
Influence of Different Cooking Methods on Fillet Steak Physicochemical Characteristics
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 606; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010606 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1916
Abstract
Meat is a source of protein widely consumed by the population in many countries due mainly to the nutritional aspects, sensory characteristics, and cultural aspects. The meat cooking preparation can promote significant changes in the meat’s chemical composition and physical characteristics. Such transformations [...] Read more.
Meat is a source of protein widely consumed by the population in many countries due mainly to the nutritional aspects, sensory characteristics, and cultural aspects. The meat cooking preparation can promote significant changes in the meat’s chemical composition and physical characteristics. Such transformations can impact both the acceptance of the product and consumers’ health. Due to the different thermal processes altering the physical-chemical characteristics of meat, the present study aimed to evaluate the physicochemical characteristics of fillet steak submitted to different cooking methods: pan-frying with and without oil and air fryer. We performed the analysis to evaluate the physicochemical characteristics considering moisture, lipid, protein, ash, sodium, and potassium content, cooking loss index and colorimetry in three degrees of doneness of the meat, rare, medium, and well done. The fillet steak prepared by pan-frying with oil lost higher moisture and weight than the other samples. The air fryer method presented the highest moisture content. There was a significant difference in lipid content in which the pan-frying with oil fillet steak showed the highest amount of lipids. The pan-frying with oil steak fillet also presented more changes in the colorimetric parameters evaluated compared to the other samples. The pan-frying with oil cooking method promoted more pronounced changes in the steak fillet, and the cooking air fryer, the changes in meat quality are less pronounced. Therefore, the air fryer can be considered a good alternative for cooking meat. Full article
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Article
Trust in Medicine as a Factor Conditioning Behaviors Recommended by Healthcare Experts during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 605; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010605 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1351
Abstract
Objective: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, public health experts have faced the challenge of convincing people to change their everyday habits. This study aims to evaluate the impact of trust in medicine on Polish citizens’ adherence to recommended behaviors. Methods: An online survey [...] Read more.
Objective: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, public health experts have faced the challenge of convincing people to change their everyday habits. This study aims to evaluate the impact of trust in medicine on Polish citizens’ adherence to recommended behaviors. Methods: An online survey was conducted on a quota sample of adult Poles (n = 1072) during the second wave of COVID-19. Results: The trust-in-medicine index was created from statements relating to trust in healthcare professionals, vaccines, and medicines. This index showed that 27.1% of respondents expressed low trust, 36.7% expressed moderate trust, and 36.3% expressed high trust. The recommended behavior index was created from nine statements. This index showed that 15.8% of respondents had low adherence, 38.2% had moderate adherence, and 46.0% had high adherence to the healthcare experts’ recommendations. One-way analysis of variance showed that people with a high trust had significantly higher scores on the recommended behavior index when compared to people with a moderate or low trust. Conclusions: This study suggests that those responsible for health policy should put more effort into building trust not only in health professionals, but also in pharmaceutical companies. We also determined the socio-demographic features of people to whom such actions of trust building should be directed. Full article
Article
Monitoring of Eccentric Hamstring Strength and Eccentric Derived Strength Ratios in Judokas from a Single Weight Category
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 604; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010604 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1408
Abstract
Background: This study was designed to perform isokinetic knee testing of male judokas competing in the under 73 kg category. The main aims were: to establish the concentric (CON) and eccentric (ECC) strength profile of hamstrings (H) and CON profile of quadriceps (Q) [...] Read more.
Background: This study was designed to perform isokinetic knee testing of male judokas competing in the under 73 kg category. The main aims were: to establish the concentric (CON) and eccentric (ECC) strength profile of hamstrings (H) and CON profile of quadriceps (Q) muscles; to evaluate the differences in CON and ECC peak torques (PT) with various strength ratios and their bilateral asymmetries; the calculation of the dynamic control ratio (DCR) and H ECC to CON ratio (HEC); Methods: 12 judokas competing on a national and international levels with a mean age of 19 ± 4 years, a weight of 75 ± 2 kg and with a height of 176 ± 5 cm were tested. All the subjects were right-hand dominant. Isokinetic testing was performed on iMOMENT, SMM isokinetic machine (SMM, Maribor, Slovenia). The paired t-test was used to determine the difference between paired variables. The level of significance was set at p ≤ 0.05; Results: Statistical differences between left (L) and right (R) Q PT (L 266; R 241 Nm), H ECC PT (L 145; R 169 Nm), HQR (L 0.54; R 0.63), DCR (L 0.55; R 0.70), HEC (L 1.02; R 1.14) and PTQ/BW (L 3.57; R 3.23 Nm/kg) were shown. Bilateral strength asymmetries in CON contraction of 13.52% ± 10.04 % for Q, 10.86% ± 7.67 % for H and 22.04% ± 12.13% for H ECC contraction were shown. Conclusions: This study reports the isokinetic strength values of judokas in the under 73 kg category, emphasising eccentric hamstring strength and eccentric derived strength ratios DCR and HEC. It was shown that asymmetries are better detected using eccentric testing and that the dominant leg in judokas had stronger eccentric hamstring strength resulting in higher DCR and HEC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Impact of Martial Arts and Combat Sports on Health)
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Brief Report
Enhancing Australian Mortality Data to Meet Future Health Information Demands
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 603; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010603 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 941
Abstract
The Australian mortality data are a foundational health dataset which supports research, policy and planning. The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated the need for more timely mortality data that could assist in monitoring direct mortality from the virus as well as indirect mortality due to [...] Read more.
The Australian mortality data are a foundational health dataset which supports research, policy and planning. The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated the need for more timely mortality data that could assist in monitoring direct mortality from the virus as well as indirect mortality due to social and economic societal change. This paper discusses the evolution of mortality data in Australia during the pandemic and looks at emerging opportunities associated with electronic infrastructure such as electronic Medical Certificates of Cause of Death (eMCCDs), ICD-11 and automated coding tools that will form the foundations of a more responsive and comprehensive future mortality dataset. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Statistics: The Australian Experience and Opportunities)
Article
Nutritional Status Disorders and Selected Risk Factors of Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia (VAP) in Patients Treated in the Intensive Care Ward—A Retrospective Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 602; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010602 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1341
Abstract
Introduction: The development of pneumonia in patients treated in intensive care wards is influenced by numerous factors resulting from the primary health condition and co-morbidities. The aim of this study is the determination of the correlation between nutritional status disorders and selected risk [...] Read more.
Introduction: The development of pneumonia in patients treated in intensive care wards is influenced by numerous factors resulting from the primary health condition and co-morbidities. The aim of this study is the determination of the correlation between nutritional status disorders and selected risk factors (type of injury, epidemiological factors, mortality risk, inflammation parameters, age, and gender) and the time of pneumonia occurrence in patients mechanically ventilated in intensive care wards. Material and method: The study included 121 patients with injuries treated in the intensive care ward who had been diagnosed with pneumonia related to mechanical ventilation. The data were collected using the method of retrospective analysis of patients’ medical records available in the electronic system. Results: Ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) occurred more frequently in patients over 61 years of age (40.4%), men (67.8%), after multiple-organ injury (45.5%), and those with a lower albumin level (86%), higher CRP values (83.5%), and leukocytes (68.6%). The risk of under-nutrition assessed with the NRS-2002 system was confirmed in the whole study group. The statistical analysis demonstrated a correlation between the leukocytes level (p = 0.012) and epidemiological factors (p = 0.035) and the VAP contraction time. Patients infected with Staphylococcus aureus had 4% of odds for the development of late VAP in comparison to Acinetobacter baumannii (p < 0.001), whereas patients infected by any other bacteria or fungi had about four times lower odds of the development of late VAP in comparison to Acinetobacter baumannii (p = 0.02). Patients with results in APACHE from 20 to 24 and from 25 to 29 had 13% and 21%, respectively, odds of the development of late VAP in comparison to patients with APACHE II scores ranging from 10 to 19 (respectively, p = 0.006; p = 0.028). Conclusions: The development of VAP is impacted by many factors, the monitoring of which has to be included in prophylactics and treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intensive and Critical Care Nursing Research)
Article
Psychosocial Profile of Juvenile and Adult Offenders Who Acknowledge Having Committed Child-to-Parent Violence
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 601; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010601 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1304
Abstract
The main objective of this study was to establish the psychosocial profile of adolescents and adults who have admitted to committing child-to-parent violence (CPV) and were serving a judicial sanction or prison sentence, respectively. Two groups of participants took part in this study. [...] Read more.
The main objective of this study was to establish the psychosocial profile of adolescents and adults who have admitted to committing child-to-parent violence (CPV) and were serving a judicial sanction or prison sentence, respectively. Two groups of participants took part in this study. The first group was made up of 89 male youths who were serving judicial sanctions, and the second group was made up of 70 men serving a prison sentence. A cross-sectional retrospective design with concurrent measurements was used in this study. Group differences in the exposure-to-violence variables were conducted. Automatic regression models were used to estimate a self-reported CPV. In relation to the variables of indirect exposure to violence, statistically significant differences between those who admitted having committed CPV and those who did not, irrespective of being adults or adolescents, were found for seeing violence in class and at home but not for seeing violence on the street or on television. Regarding the variables related to experiencing violence, the results showed statistically significant differences in experiencing violence at home but not in class or on the street. The best predictive model of CPV includes some of the dimensions of self-concept, specifically academic and family self-concept, as well as the avoidant and rational problem-solving styles and the negative orientation toward problems. The results have shown the existence of a CPV offender profile that is common to minors and adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antisocial Behavior in Youth: Victims and Offenders)
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Article
Active Ageing in Italy: A Systematic Review of National and Regional Policies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 600; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010600 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1951
Abstract
Active ageing is defined as the process of optimizing opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. The design of active ageing policies intersects with different overarching societal challenges, especially ageing populations, social rights and [...] Read more.
Active ageing is defined as the process of optimizing opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. The design of active ageing policies intersects with different overarching societal challenges, especially ageing populations, social rights and sustainability. However, there are no previous attempts to review active ageing policies in the light of these challenges and the international policy objectives and targets that are guiding the international community. The aim of this study is to systematically identify, review and analyse all national and regional policies on active ageing adopted in Italy, by applying a conceptual framework derived from main international policy initiatives in the three areas. The research was conducted in two stages. First, a case study analysis was carried out per each relevant national institution and regional government. Standardised interviews were combined with policy document search, selection and analysis. Second, we performed a policy analysis in the light of a conceptual framework adopted. This latter was composed by nine policy domains, selected and integrated from principles and objectives of three overarching international frameworks on ageing—i.e., the Regional Implementation Strategy (RIS) commitments of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing (MIPAA), social rights—i.e., the European Pillar of Social Rights and sustainability—i.e., the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. Results pointed out that out of the identified nine policy fields, the major intervention areas by Italian policy makers concerned labour market participation, life-long learning, social and economic inequalities, health and well-being. Less attention had been given to issues such as gender and equal opportunities and sustainable cities. This systematic policy review is a milestone for understanding how active ageing policies contribute to address major societal challenges and what domains need further policy development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthy and Active Ageing)
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Article
The Psychosocial Burden of Families with Childhood Blood Cancer
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 599; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010599 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1775
Abstract
Cancer is the second leading cause of death for children, and leukemias are the most common pediatric cancer diagnoses in Chile. Childhood cancer is a traumatic experience and is associated with distress, pain, and other negative experiences for patients and their families. Thus, [...] Read more.
Cancer is the second leading cause of death for children, and leukemias are the most common pediatric cancer diagnoses in Chile. Childhood cancer is a traumatic experience and is associated with distress, pain, and other negative experiences for patients and their families. Thus, psychosocial costs represent a large part of the overall burden of cancer. This study examines psychosocial experiences in a sample of 90 families of children with blood-related cancer in Chile. We provide a global overview of the family experience, focusing on patients, caregivers, and siblings. We find that most families report a negative impact upon diagnosis; disruptions in family dynamics; a range of negative feelings of the patient, such as depression, discouragement, and irritability; and difficulty with social lives. Additionally, they report negative effects in the relationship between the siblings of the patient and their parents, and within their caregivers’ spouse/partner relationship, as well as a worsening of the economic condition of the primary caregiver. Furthermore, over half of the families in the sample had to move due to diagnosis and/or treatment. Promoting interventions that can help patients, siblings, and parents cope with distress and promote resilience and well-being are important. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Economic Burden of Cancers)
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Article
Prevalence and Correlates of Intimate Partner Violence among Women Attending Different Primary Health Centers in Aljouf Region, Saudi Arabia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 598; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010598 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1334
Abstract
Background and Objectives: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a serious and widespread problem worldwide. IPV can seriously influence the physical, mental, sexual, and reproductive health of women as well as the welfare of their children. In the Middle East, IPV is pervasive and [...] Read more.
Background and Objectives: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a serious and widespread problem worldwide. IPV can seriously influence the physical, mental, sexual, and reproductive health of women as well as the welfare of their children. In the Middle East, IPV is pervasive and widely acceptable. The present study was done to determine the prevalence and correlates of IPV among women attending different primary health centers in the Aljouf region, Saudi Arabia. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 403 Saudi women attending different primary health centers in the Aljouf region, Saudi Arabia. A structured anonymous questionnaire was distributed to the targeted population during a face-to-face interview. Data analysis was done using the SPSS program, version 24. Results: The present study showed that 30.3% of the participants had been exposed to IPV over the last year. Concerning the types of violence, the present study revealed that emotional violence is the highest followed by physical and then sexual violence representing 92.6%, 67.2%, and 44.3%, respectively. The significant predictors of IPV were women with one to three children (OR = 7.322, p-value = 0.006), women with four children or more (OR = 13.463, p-value = 0.006), and women married to husbands with aggressive behavior (OR = 98.703, p-value < 0.001). Not taking the approval on marriage was significantly associated with more exposure to violence (OR = 3.190, p-value = 0.042). In addition, husband smoking status was a significant predictor for IPV (OR = 2.774, p-value = 0.012). However, women married to alcoholic drinkers had a significantly lower risk for exposure to IPV (OR = 0.108, p-value = 0.040). On the other hand, women’s age, marital status, women’s educational level, monthly income in RS, perception of income sufficiency, marriage duration, the age difference between women and their husband, and drug abuse status of the husband were not significant predictors of IPV (p-value ≥ 0.05). Sociocultural effects were the most frequent reason for IPV as reported by the participants (57.4%). The most common consequences of IPV were psychological problems (75.4%) and injuries (42.6%). Women’s reactions to IPV were leaving home (32.8%) or no reaction (36.8%) to retain their marriage. Conclusions: IPV remains an important public health problem among married women in this study area. Urgent interventions including educational and screening programs for Saudi women are required to mitigate the problem. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wellbeing and Mental Health among Students and Young People)
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Article
Fear, Efficacy, and Environmental Health Risk Reporting: Complex Responses to Water Quality Test Results in Low-Income Communities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 597; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010597 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1683
Abstract
Reducing disease from unsafe drinking-water is a key environmental health objective in rural Sub-Saharan Africa, where water management is largely community-based. The effectiveness of environmental health risk reporting to motivate sustained behaviour change is contested but as efforts to increase rural drinking-water monitoring [...] Read more.
Reducing disease from unsafe drinking-water is a key environmental health objective in rural Sub-Saharan Africa, where water management is largely community-based. The effectiveness of environmental health risk reporting to motivate sustained behaviour change is contested but as efforts to increase rural drinking-water monitoring proceed, it is timely to ask how water quality information feedback can improve water safety management. Using cross-sectional (1457 households) and longitudinal (167 participants) surveys, semi-structured interviews (73 participants), and water quality monitoring (79 sites), we assess water safety perceptions and evaluate an information intervention through which Escherichia coli monitoring results were shared with water managers over a 1.5-year period in rural Kitui County, Kenya. We integrate the extended parallel process model and the precaution adoption process model to frame risk information processing and stages of behaviour change. We highlight that responses to risk communications are determined by the specificity, framing, and repetition of messaging and the self-efficacy of information recipients. Poverty threatscapes and gender norms hinder behaviour change, particularly at the household-level; however, test results can motivate supply-level managers to implement hazard control measures—with effectiveness and sustainability dependent on infrastructure, training, and ongoing resourcing. Our results have implications for rural development efforts and environmental risk reporting in low-income settings. Full article
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Article
Acceptance of Digital Sports: A Study Showing the Rising Acceptance of Digital Health Activities Due to the SARS-CoV-19 Pandemic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 596; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010596 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2159
Abstract
In pandemic times, the possibilities for conventional sports activities are severely limited; many sports facilities are closed or can only be used with restrictions. To counteract this lack of health activities and social exchange, people are increasingly adopting new digital sports solutions—a behavior [...] Read more.
In pandemic times, the possibilities for conventional sports activities are severely limited; many sports facilities are closed or can only be used with restrictions. To counteract this lack of health activities and social exchange, people are increasingly adopting new digital sports solutions—a behavior change that had already started with the trend towards fitness apps and activity trackers. Existing research suggests that digital solutions increase the motivation to move and stay active. This work further investigates the potentials of digital sports incorporating the dimensions gender and preference for team sports versus individual sports. The study focuses on potential users, who were mostly younger professionals and academics. The results show that the SARS-CoV-19 pandemic had a significant negative impact on sports activity, particularly on persons preferring team sports. To compensate, most participants use more digital sports than before, and there is a positive correlation between the time spent physically active during the pandemic and the increase in motivation through digital sports. Nevertheless, there is still considerable skepticism regarding the potential of digital sports solutions to increase the motivation to do sports, increase performance, or raise a sense of team spirit when done in groups. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sport, Physical Activity and Health at Time of COVID-19)
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Review
Systematic Comparison of OWAS, RULA, and REBA Based on a Literature Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 595; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010595 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2843
Abstract
This study aimed to systematically compare three representative observational methods for assessing musculoskeletal loadings and their association with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs): Ovako Working Posture Analysis System (OWAS), Rapid Upper Limb Assessment (RULA), and Rapid Entire Body Assessment (REBA). The comparison was based on [...] Read more.
This study aimed to systematically compare three representative observational methods for assessing musculoskeletal loadings and their association with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs): Ovako Working Posture Analysis System (OWAS), Rapid Upper Limb Assessment (RULA), and Rapid Entire Body Assessment (REBA). The comparison was based on a literature review without time limitations and was conducted on various factors related to observational methods. The comparisons showed that although it has a significant limitation of comprising only two classifications for the leg postures, (1) the RULA is the most frequently used method among the three techniques; (2) many studies adopted the RULA even in evaluation of unstable lower limb postures; (3) the RULA assessed postural loads as higher risk levels in most studies reviewed in this research; (4) the intra- and inter-reliabilities for the RULA were not low; and (5) the risk levels assessed by the RULA were more significantly associated with postural load criteria such as discomfort, MHTs and % capable at the trunk, and MSDs. Full article
Article
Perceived Health and Earnings: Evidence from the European Working Conditions Survey 2015
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 594; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010594 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 781
Abstract
This paper aims to analyse the relationship between perceived health and earnings across Europe. Empirical analysis is based on the last published round from the European Working Conditions Survey (N = 43,850) and offers updated evidence on the effect of earnings on perceived [...] Read more.
This paper aims to analyse the relationship between perceived health and earnings across Europe. Empirical analysis is based on the last published round from the European Working Conditions Survey (N = 43,850) and offers updated evidence on the effect of earnings on perceived health in 35 countries. The main findings show a positive and significant relationship between earnings and health, which is consistent with the existing literature. Moreover, health seems to be U-shaped relative to earnings. On the other hand, age is negatively related to health, which is consistent with previous research. This paper shows the health differences between countries, where cultural, geographic, and economic differences imply health inequalities across countries. From a practical perspective, understanding the dynamics of perceived health and earnings’ processes can contribute to health policy. Full article
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Article
Health and Economic Burden of the 2017 Portuguese Extreme Wildland Fires on Children
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 593; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010593 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 938
Abstract
Wildland fires release substantial amounts of hazardous contaminants, contributing to a decline in air quality and leading to serious health risks. Thus, this study aimed to understand the contributions of the 2017 extreme wildland fires in Portugal on children health, compared to 2016 [...] Read more.
Wildland fires release substantial amounts of hazardous contaminants, contributing to a decline in air quality and leading to serious health risks. Thus, this study aimed to understand the contributions of the 2017 extreme wildland fires in Portugal on children health, compared to 2016 (with burned area, in accordance with the average of the previous 15 years). The impact of long-term exposure to PM10 and NO2 concentrations, associated with wildland fires, on postneonatal mortality, bronchitis prevalence, and bronchitis symptoms in asthmatic children was estimated, as well as the associated costs. The excess health burden in children attributable to exposure to PM10 and NO2, was calculated based on WHO HRAPIE relative risks. Fire emissions were obtained from the Fire INventory from NCAR (FINN). The results obtained indicate that the smoke from wildfires negatively impacts children’s lung function (PM10 exposure: increase of 320 and 648 cases of bronchitis in 2016 and 2017; NO2 exposure: 24 and 40 cases of bronchitis symptoms in asthmatic children in 2016 and 2017) and postneonatal mortality (PM10 exposure: 0.2 and 0.4 deaths in 2016 and 2017). Associated costs were increased in 2017 by around 1 million € for all the evaluated health endpoints, compared to 2016. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Pollution Impact on Children’s Health)
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Article
COVID-19 and Air Pollution: A Spatial Analysis of Particulate Matter Concentration and Pandemic-Associated Mortality in the US
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 592; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010592 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1514
Abstract
In 2019, a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, was first reported in Wuhan, China. The virus causes the disease commonly known as COVID-19, and, since its emergence, it has infected over 252 million individuals globally and taken the lives of over 5 million in the [...] Read more.
In 2019, a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, was first reported in Wuhan, China. The virus causes the disease commonly known as COVID-19, and, since its emergence, it has infected over 252 million individuals globally and taken the lives of over 5 million in the same time span. Primary research on SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 focused on understanding the biomolecular composition of the virus. This research has led to the development of multiple vaccines with great efficacy and antiviral treatments for the disease. The development of biomedical interventions has been crucial to combating this pandemic; additionally, environmental confounding variables that could have exacerbated the pandemic need further assessment. In this research study, we conducted a spatial analysis of particulate matter (PM) concentration and its association with COVID-19 mortality in the United States. Results of this study demonstrate a significant positive correlation between PM concentration levels and COVID-19 mortality; however, this does not necessarily imply a causal relationship. These results are consistent with similar studies in Italy and China, where significant COVID-19 cases and corresponding deaths were exhibited. Furthermore, maps of the data demonstrate clustering of COVID-19 mortality which suggest further investigation into the social determinants of health impacting the pandemic. Full article
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Article
Abdominal Aortic Screening Is a Priority for Health in Smoker Males: A Study on Central Italian Population
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 591; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010591 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 908
Abstract
Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a major public health problem. In the last decade, in some European countries, abdominal aortic screening (AAS) is emerging as a potential prevention for the rupture of AAA. The goals of our study were to estimate AAA prevalence [...] Read more.
Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a major public health problem. In the last decade, in some European countries, abdominal aortic screening (AAS) is emerging as a potential prevention for the rupture of AAA. The goals of our study were to estimate AAA prevalence and risk factors in males and females in a central Italian population, also defining the cost-effectiveness of AAS programs. A pilot study screening was conducted between 1 January 2015 and 31 December 2019 in the municipality of Teramo (Abruzzo Region, Italy) in a group of men and women, ranging from the age of 65 to 79, who were not previously operated on for AAA. The ultrasound was performed by means of Acuson sequoia 512 Simens with a Convex probe. The anterior posterior of the infra-renal aorta was evaluated. The odds ratio values (ORs) were used to evaluate the risk of AAA, and the following determinants were taken into consideration: gender, smoke use, hypertension, and ischemic heart disease. We also estimated the direct costs coming from aneurysmectomy (surgical repair or endovascular aneurysms repair—EVAR). A total of 62 AAA (2.7%, mean age 73.8 ± 4.0) were diagnosed, of which 57 were in men (3.7%, mean age 73.6 ± 4.0) and 5 were in women (0.7%, mean age 74.3 ± 4.1). Male gender and smoke use are more important risk factors for AAA ≥ 3 cm, respectively: OR = 5.94 (2.37–14.99, p < 0.001) and OR = 5.21 (2.63–10.30, p < 0.000). A significant increase in OR was noted for AAA ≥ 3 cm and cardiac arrhythmia and ischemic heart disease, respectively: OR = 2.81 (1.53–5.15, p < 0.000) and OR = 2.76 (1.40–5.43, p = 0.006). Regarding the cost analysis, it appears that screening has contributed to the reduction in costs related to urgency. In fact, the synthetic indicator given by the ratio between the DRGs (disease related group) relating to the emergency and those of the elective activity went from 1.69 in the year prior to the activation of the screening to a median of 0.39 for the five-year period of activation of the screening. It is important to underline that the results of our work confirm that the screening activated in our territory has led to a reduction in the expenditure for AAA emergency interventions, having increased the planned interventions. This must be a warning for local stakeholders, especially in the post-pandemic period, in order to strengthen prevention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthcare and Cardiovascular Diseases)
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Article
Enhancing Public Participation in Public Health Offerings: Patient Preferences for Facilities in the Western Cape Province Using a Discrete Choice Experiment
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 590; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010590 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 968
Abstract
Understanding patients’ preferences for health facilities could help decision makers in designing patient-centered services. Therefore, this study aims to understand how patients’ willingness to trade for certain attributes affects the choice of public health facilities in the Western Cape province of Cape Town, [...] Read more.
Understanding patients’ preferences for health facilities could help decision makers in designing patient-centered services. Therefore, this study aims to understand how patients’ willingness to trade for certain attributes affects the choice of public health facilities in the Western Cape province of Cape Town, South Africa. A discrete choice experiment was conducted in two community day centers (CDCs). Patients repetitively chose between two hypothetical health facilities that differed in six attributes: distance to facility, treatment by doctors vs. nurses, confidentiality during treatment, availability of medication, first visit (drop-in) waiting times, and appointment waiting times. The sample consisted of 463 participants. The findings showed that availability of medication (50.5%), appointment waiting times (19.5%), and first visit waiting times (10.2%) were the most important factors for patients when choosing a health facility. In addition, respondents preferred shorter appointment and first visit waiting times (<2 h). These results identified important characteristics in choosing public health facilities in Cape Town. These public health facilities could be improved by including patient voices to inform operational and policy decisions in a low-income setting. Full article
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Article
Mapping Problematic Drinking Trends over Time in Urban, Semi-Urban, and Rural Populations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 589; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010589 - 05 Jan 2022
Viewed by 919
Abstract
Current alcohol public health policy in Australia is not uniform but is generally focused on restricting access and early prevention of problematic alcohol use. Semi-urban and rural populations are at greater risk of disease and other poor health outcomes due to a variety [...] Read more.
Current alcohol public health policy in Australia is not uniform but is generally focused on restricting access and early prevention of problematic alcohol use. Semi-urban and rural populations are at greater risk of disease and other poor health outcomes due to a variety of factors. Little is known about problematic drinking patterns over time in semi-urban and rural populations. This study aims to assess patterns of problematic drinking defined as both long-term risky and heavy episodic drinking over time by age, sex, and mental health status among urban, semi-urban and rural populations). Four waves (2004 to 2016) of the Australian NDSHS (National Drug Strategy Household Survey) were analyzed to assess problematic drinking of participants over 18 years of age. We used regression models and predictive margins to identify trends in problematic drinking over time based on age, sex, and mental health status. Our results show young adults across all regions, males, and mentally well individuals in urban areas have reductions in the risk of problematic drinking over time. Middle-aged adults across all regions, females, and those with varying mental health presentations in rural areas have some increases in risk of problematic drinking over time. The general conclusion is that targeted alcohol-related public health policy may need to change and focus on females, middle-aged individuals, and those living in rural areas. Programs to support problematic drinking in people with mental health disorders may also need to be a priority. Full article
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Article
Nonlinear Influence of Chinese Real Estate Development on Environmental Pollution: New Evidence from Spatial Econometric Model
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 588; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010588 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1194
Abstract
Environmental pollution is a problem of universal concern throughout the globe. The development of real estate industry not only consumes huge resources, but also has close ties with high-consumption industries such as the construction industry. However, previous studies have rarely explored the impact [...] Read more.
Environmental pollution is a problem of universal concern throughout the globe. The development of real estate industry not only consumes huge resources, but also has close ties with high-consumption industries such as the construction industry. However, previous studies have rarely explored the impact of real estate development on environmental pollution. Therefore, this paper employs the entropy method to construct a comprehensive index of environmental pollution based on panel data of 31 provinces in China from 2000 to 2017, and empirically examines the impact of real estate development on environmental pollution. This article uses real estate investment to measure the development of the real estate industry. In view of the high spatial autocorrelation of environmental pollution, this paper selects a spatial econometric model. The empirical study found that: (1) By using the Spatial Durbin Model, real estate development has an inverted U-shaped impact on environmental pollution. Meanwhile, most cities have not yet reached the turning point; that is, with the continuous development of the real estate industry, environmental pollution will continue to increase. (2) Further regional heterogeneity found that the inverted U-shaped relationship still exists in coastal and inland areas. (3) Finally, this article used the Spatial Mediation Model to explain the nonlinear impact of real estate development on environmental pollution, with two important mediating variables: population density and industrial structure. Through the above analysis, it can be observed that real estate development has a significant impact on environmental pollution. Thus, the country and the government can reduce environmental pollution by improving the investment structure, using environmentally friendly building materials, guiding population flow and promoting industrial upgrading. Full article
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Review
Strengthening the Health System as a Strategy to Achieving a Universal Health Coverage in Underprivileged Communities in Africa: A Scoping Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 587; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010587 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2839
Abstract
Universal health coverage (UHC) is defined as people having access to quality healthcare services (e.g., treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care) they need, irrespective of their financial status. Access to quality healthcare services continues to be a challenge for many people in low- and [...] Read more.
Universal health coverage (UHC) is defined as people having access to quality healthcare services (e.g., treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care) they need, irrespective of their financial status. Access to quality healthcare services continues to be a challenge for many people in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The aim of this study was to conduct a scoping review to map out the health system strengthening strategies that can be used to attain universal health coverage in Africa. We conducted a scoping review and qualitatively synthesized existing evidence from studies carried out in Africa. We included studies that reported interventions to strengthen the health system, e.g., financial support, increasing work force, improving leadership capacity in health facilities, and developing and upgrading infrastructure of primary healthcare facilities. Outcome measures included health facility infrastructures, access to medicines, and sources of financial support. A total of 34 studies conducted met our inclusion criteria. Health financing and developing health infrastructure were the most reported interventions toward achieving UHC. Our results suggest that strengthening the health system, namely, through health financing, developing, and improving the health infrastructure, can play an important role in reaching UHC in the African context. Full article
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Article
On the Coupling and Coordination Development between Environment and Economy: A Case Study in the Yangtze River Delta of China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 586; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010586 - 05 Jan 2022
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 1200
Abstract
The coupling and coordination development of the environment and economy (CC2E) is one of the most vital issues to sustainable development. This paper adopted the coupling coordination model, projection pursuit algorithm, and random forest model to explore the spatial-temporal evolution and influencing factors [...] Read more.
The coupling and coordination development of the environment and economy (CC2E) is one of the most vital issues to sustainable development. This paper adopted the coupling coordination model, projection pursuit algorithm, and random forest model to explore the spatial-temporal evolution and influencing factors of the CC2E in the Yangtze River Delta from 2015 to 2019, respectively. The results showed that: (1) The degree of coupling coordination (DCC) of the CC2E in most cities of the Yangtze River Delta has risen from primary coordination to intermediate coordination. (2) In the spatial perspective, the distribution of DCC is correlated with geographical location. The value of DCC in the western region was significantly lower than that of the eastern cities. (3) The influencing factors results showed that the GDP in the economic subsystem and the annual average concentration of PM2.5 in the environmental subsystem were the most influencing factors of DCC in the Yangtze River Delta. The established index system of CC2E and the measurements of CC2E provide a new idea for how to achieve sustainable development. Meanwhile, this study can provide recommendations for formulating the environmental protection and economic development policy. Full article
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