Medication misuse results in considerable problems for both patient and society. It is a complex problem with many contributing factors, including timely access to product information.
To investigate the value of 3-dimensional (3D) visualization paired with video conferencing as a tool for pharmaceutical advice over distance in terms of accessibility and ease of use for the advice seeker.
We created a Web-based communication service called AssistancePlus that allows an advisor to demonstrate the physical handling of a complex pharmaceutical product to an advice seeker with the aid of 3D visualization and audio/video conferencing. AssistancePlus was tested in 2 separate user studies performed in a usability lab, under realistic settings and emulating a real usage situation. In the first study, 10 pharmacy students were assisted by 2 advisors from the Swedish National Co-operation of Pharmacies' call centre on the use of an asthma inhaler. The student-advisor interview sessions were filmed on video to qualitatively explore their experience of giving and receiving advice with the aid of 3D visualization. In the second study, 3 advisors from the same call centre instructed 23 participants recruited from the general public on the use of 2 products: (1) an insulin injection pen, and (2) a growth hormone injection syringe. First, participants received advice on one product in an audio-recorded telephone call and for the other product in a video-recorded AssistancePlus session (product order balanced). In conjunction with the AssistancePlus session, participants answered a questionnaire regarding accessibility, perceived expressiveness, and general usefulness of 3D visualization for advice-giving over distance compared with the telephone and were given a short interview focusing on their experience of the 3D features.
In both studies, participants found the AssistancePlus service helpful in providing clear and exact instructions. In the second study, directly comparing AssistancePlus and the telephone, AssistancePlus was judged positively for ease of communication (P = .001), personal contact (P = .001), explanatory power (P
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BACKGROUND: The Edinburgh randomised trial of breast-cancer screening recruited women aged 45-64 years from 1978 to 1981 (cohort 1), and those aged 45-49 years during 1982-85 (cohorts 2 and 3). Results based on 14 years of follow-up and 270,000 woman-years of observation are reported. METHODS: Breast-cancer mortality rates in the intervention group (28,628 women offered screening) were compared with those in the control group (26,026) with adjustment for socioeconomic status (SES) of general medical practices. Rate ratios were derived by means of logistic regression for the total trial population and for women first offered screening while younger than 50 years. Analyses were by intention to treat. FINDINGS: Initial unadjusted results showed a difference of just 13% in breast-cancer mortality rates between the intervention and control groups (156 deaths [5.18 per 10,000] vs 167 [6.04 per 10,000]; rate ratio 0.87 [95% CI 0.70-1.06]), but the results were influenced by differences in SES by trial group. After adjustment for SES, the rate ratio was 0.79 (95% CI 0.60-1.02). When deaths after diagnosis more than 3 years after the end of the study were censored the rate ratio became 0.71 (0.53-0.95). There was no evidence of heterogeneity by age at entry and no evidence that younger entrants had smaller or delayed benefit (rate ratio 0.70 [0.41-1.20]). No breast-cancer mortality benefit was observed for women whose breast cancers were diagnosed when they were younger than 50 years. Other-cause mortality rates did not differ by trial group when adjusted for SES. INTERPRETATION: Our findings confirm results from randomised trials in Sweden and the USA that screening for breast cancer lowers breast-cancer mortality. Similar results are reported by the UK geographical comparison, UK Trial of Early Detection of Breast Cancer. The results for younger women suggest benefit from introduction of screening before 50 years of age.
Comment In: Lancet. 1999 Jun 5;353(9168):1896-710371561
It was the aim to study orthodontic treatment experience and past and present perceived need for treatment in 30-year-old Danes who, at adolescence, had no access to organized orthodontic care. In order to identify the malocclusion traits which elicited treatment or need for treatment, the findings were related to the occurrence of various traits which had been registered in the same individuals 15 years earlier. From questionnaires (response rate 86%, n = 841) it appeared that 10% had received treatment and 20% perceived need for treatment either in childhood or at present. At adolescence, the subjects who had subsequently received treatment, displayed relatively high frequencies of ectopic eruption, anterior cross-bite, extreme maxillary overjet, deep bite, and crowding; among those who perceived need for treatment, extreme maxillary overjet, mandibular overjet and crowding were relatively prevalent.
This article describes a case study examining the effects of participating in a health promotion project, one aspect of which was a health assessment conducted using participatory action research. The study was carried out over 2.5 years in a project for older Aboriginal women (hereafter known as the grandmothers). Participation in the project and health assessment contributed to a number of changes in them, which were categorized as cleansing and healing, connecting with self, acquiring knowledge and skills, connecting within the group, and external exposure and engagement. This experience demonstrated an approach to health promotion programming and conducting a health assessment that was acceptable to this group of people and fostered changes congruent with empowerment.
AIM: The aim of this study was to analyse whether immigrant women request induced abortion more frequently than Swedish-born women and, if so, to study possible explanations, including contraceptive practices and attitudes. METHODS: All women who requested induced abortion during a period of one year were included in the study. The 1289 women, of whom 36% were born outside Sweden, were interviewed by a nurse-midwife who, using a structured protocol, gathered information on socioeconomic factors, reasons for abortion, experience of contraceptive methods, and family planning counselling. The proportion of women with non-Swedish origin in the study population was compared with the official demographic statistics of the corresponding area. RESULTS: The number of women born outside Sweden who requested induced abortion was larger than expected from their proportion in the population. The immigrant women originated from 77 countries and four continents, the largest subgroup, 11%, coming from Iran. Immigrant women had less experience of contraceptive use, more previous pregnancies and more induced abortions than women born in Sweden. In a multivariate analysis, immigrant status and educational level were found to be independent risk factors for repeat abortion. CONCLUSION: Immigrant status seems to be an independent risk factor for induced abortion. The immigrant women originated from a wide range of cultures. There is no reason to believe that the women in this heterogeneous group should have any cultural factor in common that could explain their higher proneness to seek induced abortion. The most probable cause is that immigrant status is associated more often with low education, weak social network, poverty, unemployment, and being outside common pathways to healthcare.
The development of knowledge for health promotion requires an effective mechanism for collaboration between academics, practitioners, and policymakers. The challenge is better to understand the dynamic and ever-changing context of the researcher-practitioner-policymaker-community relationship.
The aims were to explore the factors that foster Academic Practice Policy (APP) partnerships, and to systematically and transparently to review three cases.
Three partnerships were included: Power and Commitment-Alcohol and Drug Prevention by Non-Governmental Organizations in Sweden; Healthy City-Social Inclusion, Urban Governance, and Sustainable Welfare Development; and Empowering Families with Teenagers-Ideals and Reality in Karlskoga and Degerfors. The analysis includes searching for evidence for three hypotheses concerning contextual factors in multi-stakeholder collaboration, and the cumulative effects of partnership synergy.
APP partnerships emerge during different phases of research and development. Contextual factors are important; researchers need to be trusted by practitioners and politicians. During planning, it is important to involve the relevant partners. During the implementation phase, time is important. During data collection and capacity building, it is important to have shared objectives for and dialogues about research. Finally, dissemination needs to be integrated into any partnership. The links between process and outcomes in participatory research (PR) can be described by the theory of partnership synergy, which includes consideration of how PR can ensure culturally and logistically appropriate research, enhance recruitment capacity, and generate professional capacity and competence in stakeholder groups. Moreover, there are PR synergies over time.
The fundamentals of a genuine partnership are communication, collaboration, shared visions, and willingness of all stakeholders to learn from one another.
Birch and Abelson  argue that non-income based barriers might explain differences in utilization of health services within and between income groups. Databases which contain utilization data rarely allow for the modelling of geographic variation. In the Ontario Health Survey (OHS), individual observations are georeferenced at the Public Health Unit (PHU) scale, but PHUs cannot easily be used because of the large coefficients of variation. To overcome this problem, a cluster analysis is performed to create a service environment variable, which reflects differences in service availability, population size and rurality. Utilization of health services is then modelled as a logistic regression equation where the independent variables are age, sex, service environment and income to test the Birch and Abelson argument. This argument is then extended by controlling for age, health and income status. Based on the modelling results, the importance of geography to access and utilization is assessed.
To evaluate the accessibility and distribution of the Norwegian National Air Emergency Service in the 10-year period from 1988 to 1998.
The primary material was annual standardized activity data that included all helicopter missions. A multivariate model of determinants for use of the helicopter service was computed by linear regression. Accessibility was measured as the percentage of the population reached in different flying times, and we evaluated the service using a simulation of alternative locations for the helicopter bases.
The helicopter service (HEMS) has short access times, with a mean reaction time of 8 minutes and a mean response time of 26 minutes for acute missions. Nearly all patients (98%) are reached within 1 hour. A simulation that tested alternative locations of the helicopter bases compared with current locations showed no increase in accessibility. The use of the service shows large regional differences. Multivariate analyses showed that the distances of the patients from the nearest helicopter base and the nearest hospital are significant determinants for the use of HEMS.
Establishment of a national service has given the Norwegian population better access to highly qualified prehospital emergency services. Furthermore, the HEMS has a compensating effect in adjusting for differences in traveling distances to a hospital. Safety, cost-containment, and gatekeeper functions remain challenges.