Aim: The aim of this study was to describe the experiences of parents handling oral anticancer drugs in a home setting. Methods: Parents of children with cancer were recruited from a pediatric oncology ward in Sweden to participate in an interview. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and subjected to qualitative content analysis. Results: We found the following categories and subcategories: parents’ views on the provided information - lack of, too little or contradictory information, and parents’ preferences for information delivery; safety over time; correct drug dose; and drug administration. As time passed, most parents adapted to their child’s illness, felt safer, and found it easier to take in and process any given information. Parents preferred information in different formats (written, movie clips and orally) and in their mother tongue. Many parents were aware of the importance of giving an accurate dose to their child and described the process of drug administration as overwhelming. Conclusions: Parents need to be provided with accurate, timely, nonconflicting and repeated information – in different forms and in their mother tongue – on how to handle oral anticancer drugs at home.
Both in medicine and in psychiatry, it’s essential to thoroughly identify the cases in which it is necessary to intervene therapeutically, and justify a sick leave or make forensic interpretations, among others. Therefore, it is important to find a general concept and definition for medical and psychiatric disorders. Boorse, develops one of the most widespread models of medical disorder that aspired to be value-free and that was based in medical dysfunction. But values appear implicitly or explicitly with a deeper analysis of this concept. On the other hand, there is the overtly value laden (harm) component that has been used in the definition of disorder, defended as essential by several authors over the time, once symptoms and their consequences (disability, distress) have been considered as a priority in medicine. In this article, we intend to review, through a conceptual analysis, the proximity between the concepts of mental and physical disorders regarding the presence of values, and to propose a way to deal with the different kinds of values that might be present. It is concluded that values are present in the main concepts that have been used to define medical or psychiatric disorder. What is essential is to understand what is descriptive and what is value and to try to avoid moral values.
Rationale, aims, and objectives: Portenoy and Foley’s 1986 landmark study “Chronic use of opioid analgesics in non-malignant pain: report of 38 cases” has been reproached for opening the floodgates of opioid prescribing for chronic non-cancer pain and the attendant harms. This influential article has been cited over 500 times in the scientific literature over the last four decades. This study seeks to understand the impact of Portenoy and Foley’s article on subsequent discussions and research about opioids. Methods: We conducted a multi-method bibliometric analysis of all citations of this article from 1986 through 2019 using quantitative relational and qualitative content analysis to determine how uses and interpretations of this case series and associated prescribing guidance have changed over time, in relationship to the evolution of the North American opioid crises. Results: Using time series analysis, we identified three periods with distinct interpretations and uses of the index study. In the first “exploration” period (1986-1996), the index study was well-received by the scientific community and motivated further study of the effects of opioids. In the second “implementation” period (1997-2003, coinciding with the release of OxyContin®), this study was used as evidence to support widespread prescribing of opioid analgesics, even while it was recognized that long-term effects had not yet been evaluated. The third “reassessment” period (2004-2019) focused on how opioid-related harms had been overlooked, and in many cases these harms were directly attributed to this study. Conclusion: These changes in interpretation demonstrate shifting currents of the use and mobilization of evidence regarding pain and opioids, and how these currents both impact and are impacted by clinical practices and major sociohistorical phenomena such as the opioid crisis. Researchers and clinicians must account for these shifting dynamics when developing and interpreting scientific knowledge, including in the form of clinical practice guidelines.
The Universal Health (UHC) movement in its latest iteration, has adopted key objectives of Primary Health Care (PHC). This is a notable shift in the right direction but achieving what appears to be simple targets is a highly complex endeavour across both wealthy and less wealthy countries and jurisdictions. Improving health for all targets requires political-economic, bureaucratic and alignment with bottom-up grass-roots agencies. Despite present successes, there is a need to adapt to constant challenges including pandemics, adverse climate phenomena and political-economic shifts.
Rationale, aims and objectives 39 Evidence-based medicine (EBM) holds that estimates of effects of health interventions based on 40 high-certainty evidence (CoE) are expected to change less frequently than the effects generated 41 in low CoE studies. However, this foundational principle of EBM has never been empirically 42 tested. 43 Methods 44 We reviewed all systematic reviews and meta-analyses in Cochrane Database of Systematic 45 Reviews from January 2016 through May 2021 (n=3,323). We identified 414(207x2) and 384 46 (192x2) pairs of original and updated Cochrane reviews that assessed CoE and pooled 47 treatment effect estimates. We appraised CoE using the Grading of Recommendations 48 Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) method. We assessed the difference in 49 effect sizes between the original versus updated reviews as a function of change in CoE, which 50 we report as a ratio of odds ratio (ROR). We compared ROR generated in the studies that 51 changed CoE from very low/low (VL/L) to moderate/high (M/H) vs. MH/H VL/L. We also 52 assessed the heterogeneity and inconsistency (using the tau and I2 statistic), the change in 53 precision of effect estimates (by calculating the ratio of standard errors) (seR), and the absolute 54 deviation in estimates of treatment effects (aROR). 55 Results 56 57 We found that CoE originally appraised as VL/L had 2.1 (95%CI: 1.19 to 4.12; p=0.0091) times 58 higher odds to be changed in the future studies than M/H CoE. However, the effect size was not 59 different when CoE changed from VL/L M/H vs. M/H VL/L [ROR=1.02 (95%CI: 0.74 to 1.39) 60 vs. 1.02 (95%CI: 0.44 to 2.37); p=1 for the between subgroup differences]. aROR was similar 61 between the subgroups [median (IQR):1.12 (1.07 to 1.57) vs 1.21 (1.12 to 2.43)]. We observed 62 large inconsistency (I 2=99%) and imprecision in treatment effects (seR=1.09). 63 Conclusions 64 We provide the first empirical support for a foundational principle of EBM showing that low65 quality evidence changes more often than high CoE. However, the effect size was not different 66 between studies with low vs high CoE. The finding that the effect size did not differ between low 67 and high CoE indicate urgent need to refine current EBM critical appraisal methods
RATIONALE, AIMS, AND OBJECTIVES: This study aims to investigate how reported comprehension of the Medicare program and its prescription drug benefits affects cost-related medication nonadherence (CRN) among Medicare beneficiaries with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors. METHODS: This cross-sectional study used the 2017 Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey Public Use File data and included Medicare beneficiaries aged ≥ 65 years who reported having at least one CVD risk factor (i.e., hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, smoking, and obesity) (n=2,821). A survey-weighted logistic model was used to examine associations between lack of difficulty understanding the Medicare program and its prescription drug benefits and CRN, controlling for beneficiaries’ demographic (e.g., age) and clinical characteristics (e.g, comorbidities). This study further analyzed five subgroups based on the type of CVD risk factors involved. RESULTS: Among Medicare beneficiaries with CVD risk factors, 14.4% reported CRN. Medicare beneficiaries with CVD risk factors who reported difficulty understanding the overall Medicare program and its prescription drug benefits were more likely to report CRN, compared to those who reported easy understanding of the overall Medicare program (OR=1.49; 95% CI=1.09, 2.04; p<0.001) and its prescription drug benefits (OR=2.01; 95% CI=1.51, 2.67; p<0.001). Similar results were obtained for the subgroups with obesity, hypertension, or hyperlipidemia. CONCLUSIONS: Perceived lack of difficulty understanding the Medicare Program and its prescription drug benefits has a positive impact on CRN reduction among Medicare beneficiaries with CVD risk factors, especially those with obesity, hypertension or hyperlipidemia. Monitoring and enhancing Medicare beneficiaries’ overall understanding of the Medicare program may reduce CRN.
The commentary discusses the importance of developing Universal Health Coverage strategies through the lens of complex systems framework that evaluates policies not only in terms of the final desired outcome but also as an interplay of disparate views among diverse actors in the system. This view also confers a degree of agency and autonomy on the individual actors, whether they be patients or healthcare workers, and necessitates the inclusion of bottom-up participatory process in the development of UHC policies and interventions. These are consistent with the Primary Health Care principles articulated in the 1978 Alma Ata Declaration and will need to be integrated into the health system development framework to achieve UHC. Ultimately, this approach would encourage the creation of a more cooperative and adaptive policy environment in which each actor is encouraged to collaborate and are nudged toward a desirable outcome rather than through coercive means.
Job satisfaction and retention of healthcare staff remains an ongoing issue in many health systems. Huddles have been endorsed as a mechanism to improve patient safety by improving teamwork, collaboration, and communication in teams. This study synthesizes the literature to investigate the impact of huddles on job satisfaction, teamwork, and work engagement in multidisciplinary healthcare teams. Five academic databases were searched to conduct a systematic review of peer-reviewed literature published from January 2000 – January 2020. Articles were included if they (1) featured a daily huddle, were conducted in a healthcare setting, and involved a multidisciplinary team and (2) measured variables including job satisfaction, work engagement, or teamwork. Results were reported in accordance with the Systematic Synthesis Without Meta-analysis (SWiM) and Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines. We identified 445 articles of which 12 met the eligibility criteria and are included in this review. All 12 studies found a predominantly positive impact on teamwork and job satisfaction. None of the studies discussed or reported evidence of the impact of huddles on work engagement. This review highlights the value of a daily multidisciplinary healthcare team huddle in improving job satisfaction and teamwork for the healthcare staff involved. However, there is a dearth of high-quality, peer-reviewed evidence regarding the direct impact of huddles on job satisfaction, teamwork and in particular on work engagement. Further research – particularly controlled studies on adoption, implementation, and outcomes for healthcare team culture – is needed to further assess this intervention.
Rationale and aims: Precision medicine (PM) raises a key question: How can we know what works when the number of people with a health problem becomes small or one (n=1)? We here present a formative case from Norway. The Norwegian Board of Health Supervision was faced with a cancer patient, who had improved after treatment with a drug in the private health sector but was refused continued treatment in the public health service due to lack of clinical trial evidence. The Board overturned this decision, arguing that the drug had been unambiguously documented to work in the individual case. We aim to provide an in-depth analysis of this case and The Board´s decision and thereby to illustrate and elucidate key epistemological and ethical issues and developments in PM. Method: We provide our analysis and discussion using tools of critical thinking and concepts from philosophy of science and medicine such as uncertainty, evidence, forms of inference and causation. We also examine the case in the light of the history of evidence-based medicine (EBM). Results and discussion: The case reflects an epistemological shift in medicine where PM puts greater emphasis on evidence that arises in individual patients after the treatment is provided over preexisting population-based evidence. PM may rely more heavily on abduction to decide what works and qualitative, rather than quantitative judgments. The case also illustrates a possible shift in the concept of causation from regularity accounts to mechanistic and process accounts. We discuss ethical implications of a shift from more “traditional” to “personalized EBM”. Conclusion: A framework that is more based on abductions and evidence arising in the individual case has problems in creating quantifiable, reliable, and generalizable evidence, and in promoting transparency and accountability. PM currently lacks clear criteria for deciding what works in an individual, posing ethical challenges.
Sturmberg and Martin’s application of systems and complexity theory to understanding Universal Health Care (UHC) and Primary Health Care (PHC) is evaluated in the light of the influence of political economy on health systems. Further the role that neoliberal approaches to governance have had in creating increased inequities is seen as a key challenge for UHC. COVID-19 has emphasized long standing discrepancies in health and these disadvantages require government will and cooperation together with adequate social services to redress these discrepancies in UHC.
The aim of the present paper is to describe and discuss how recent theories about translation, bridging medical and humanistic understandings of knowledge translation, in the medical humanities (Kristeva et al 2018) can bring about a new understanding of health literacy in the context of patient education. We argue that knowledge translation must be understood as a simultaneous interrogation of the patient’s and the health care providers co-construction of new and shared meanings that can create realities with medical consequences. To illustrate our points, we will describe the case of Jim, a kidney transplant recipient who received standard patient education, but lost the graft (the new kidney). If we apply Kristeva’s view onto this context, graft function is not merely a biology but a complex bio-cultural fact. In this perspective, graft function is seen as a phenomenon that embraces translation between health as a biomedical phenomenon and healing as lived experience, and that opens for shared meaning -making processes between the patient and the health care provider. In Jim’s case this means that we need to rethink the approach to patient education in a way that encourage the patient’s idiosyncratic way of thinking and experiencing – and transform health information into a means for sustaining Jim’s particular life – not life ‘in general’. The patient education program did not take into consideration the singularities of Jim’s biographical temporality, with its changes in everyday life, priorities, attitudes and values. The arguments are generic and could be applied to other contexts.
Objectives: To estimate the frequency and factors associated with foregone and delayed medical care attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic among non-elderly adults from August to December 2020 in the US. Methods: We used three survey waves from the Urban Institute’s Household Pulse Survey (HPS) collected between August 19 to 31, October 14 to 26, and December 9 to 21. The final sample included 155,825 non-elderly (18 to 64) respondents representing 135,835,598 million individuals in the US. We used two multivariable logistic regressions to estimate the association between respondents’ characteristics and foregone and delayed care. Results: The frequency of foregone and delayed medical care were 26.9% and 35.9%, respectively. Across all income levels, around 60% of respondents reported difficulties in paying for usual household expenses in the last 7 days. More than half reported several days of mental health issues. The regression results indicated that foregone or delayed care were significantly associated with difficulties in paying usual household expenses (across all income levels) (P<.001), worse self-reported health status (P<.001), increased mental health problems (P<.001), Veterans Affairs (P<.001) or Medicaid (P=.002) coverage compared to private healthcare coverage, and older age groups. Individuals who participated in the latter two waves of the survey (October, December) were less likely to report foregone and delayed care compared to those who participated in wave 1 (August). Conclusion: Overall, the frequency of foregone and delayed medical care remained high from August to December 2020 among non-elderly US adults. Our findings highlight that pandemic-induced access barriers are major drivers of reduced healthcare provision during the second half of the pandemic and highlight the need for policies to support patients in seeking timely care.
Rationale, aims and objectives The concept of patient or case complexity is relevant – and widely used – at all levels and stages of mental health service provision, but there have been few methodologically robust attempts to define this term. This study aimed to establish a consensus on factors contributing to patient complexity in adult psychological services using Delphi Methodology. Method Applied psychologists in a single urban/suburban UK National Health Service setting took part in a three-round modified Delphi study. Twenty-eight respondents in round one gave qualitative data on factors they considered when assessing complexity, which was subject to thematic analysis. Twenty-five respondents in round two rated how central/peripheral each theme was to their judgement using Likert scales. In a third round, twenty respondents addressed discrepancies and possible utilities of the emerging framework. Results Thirteen factors contributing to patient/case complexity (Active Severe/Enduring Mental Health, Current Coping/Functioning, Engagement, Forensic History, Iatrogenic Factors, Interpersonal Functioning, Neuro-Cognitive Functioning, Physical Health, Problematic Substance Use, Risk, Severity/Chronicity of Presenting Problems, Systemic and Socio-Economic Factors and Trauma) were identified with a high degree of consensus. All were rated as central to complexity. Conclusions We conclude that applied psychologists do have a shared understanding of complexity and make recommendations for further research validating, developing and applying this empirically derived framework. Keywords: psychological, complexity, definition, operationalising, framework development, clinical judgement
Rationale, aims and objectives: Increased incidence of chronic illnesses coupled with physician shortages have yielded strain on primary care providers (PCP) to meet care demands. Interdisciplinary providers such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants have increasingly been embedded into primary care teams to alleviate some workload demand. Little evidence exists about the impact of interdisciplinary PCP care delivery models on provider outcomes. The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of interdisciplinary PCP care delivery on provider burnout, job satisfaction and intention to leave current position. Methods: We conducted a cross sectional mail survey using Dillman methodology of primary care practices (e.g., internal medicine) across New York State. A random sample of interdisciplinary PCPs (physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants) (n=333) responded. The Provider Co-management Index (α = .85) was used to measure how well interdisciplinary dyads co-management care delivery attributes (effective communication; mutual respect and trust; shared philosophy of care). Provider outcomes were measured with validated AHRQ and HRSA items for burnout, job satisfaction and intention to leave position. Descriptive statistics, logistic regression models, crude and adjusted odds ratios were calculated, controlling for participant and practice characteristics. Results: Almost 30% of participants reported burnout with three times the odds of intending to leave their current position within one year. With each unit increase in effective co-management between interdisciplinary dyads there was 15% less burnout and 10% less odds of intention to leave position. Conclusion: Incorporating interdisciplinary specialties in primary care appears promising to alleviate some adverse provider outcomes. Organizations contemplating delivery models to promote well-being and retention may consider co-management. Cost effectiveness research is needed to determine financial sustainability of interdisciplinary care delivery.
Rationale, aims and objectives: There is a large body of literature from all over the world that describes, analyzes, or evaluates home care models and interventions. The present article aims to identify the practical lessons that can be gained from a systematic examination of that literature. Method: We conducted a three-step sequential search process from which 113 documents were selected. That corpus was then narratively analyzed according to a realist review approach. Results: A first level of observation is that there are multiple blind spots in the existing literature on home care. The definition and delimitation of what constitutes home care services is generally under-discussed. In the same way, the composition of the basket of care provided and its fit with the need of recipients is under-addressed. Finally, the literature relies heavily on RCTs whose practical contribution to decisions or policy is disputable.At a second level, our analysis suggests that three mechanisms (system integration, case management and relational continuity) are core characteristics of home care models effectiveness. Conclusion: We conclude by providing advice for creating effective home care system change through rational and participatory design and evaluation alongside public dialogue about the purpose and future of home care.
The well-known clinical axiom stating that “common things are common” attests to the pivotal role of probability in diagnosis. Despite the popularity of this and related axioms, there is no operationalized definition of a common disease, and no practicable way of incorporating actual disease frequencies into differential diagnosis. In this expository essay, we aim to reduce the ambiguity surrounding the definition of a common (or rare) disease and show that incidence – not prevalence – is the proper metric of disease frequency for diagnosis. We explore how a numerical estimates of disease frequencies based on incidence can be incorporated into differential diagnosis as well as the inherent limitations of this method. These concepts have important implications for diagnostic decision making and medical education, and hold promise as a method to improve diagnostic accuracy.
Background: Optimizing the monitoring of peripheral venous catheters is essential. We developed a nursing record system at bedside (Patient Smart Reader®) to track peripheral venous catheters acts. Aims: Improve peripheral venous catheter monitoring. To improve the quality of monitoring, we aimed to increase the usage rate of nursing record system at bedside. Methods: We developed a “commitment intervention” course based on binding communication paradigm. Evaluation of its performance on monitoring was analyzed using a p-chart and time series analysis. Findings: Nurses observed a significant improvement in compliance with catheter monitoring over time (shifts after shifts), ranging from 27.6% (CI = [25.3; 30.0]) of compliance before commitment intervention to 47.4% (CI = [45.0; 49.9]) after training. The commitment intervention increased the chances of carrying out monitoring through the tool for acts related to peripheral venous catheter by 2.42 (odds ratio) (CI = [1.88; 3.11]). Conclusion: Binding communication provides an effective method for changing nurses’ behaviors in terms of safe care. The determinants of engagement (individual vs. collective) can be indicators for defining future communication and training strategies in care centers for all Health care workers.