Rapid technological advances have led to an explosion of biomedical data in recent years. The pace of change has inspired new collaborative approaches for sharing materials and resources to help train life scientists both in the use of cutting-edge bioinformatics tools and databases and in how to analyse and interpret large datasets. A prototype platform for sharing such training resources was recently created by the Bioinformatics Training Network (BTN). Building on this work, we have created a centralized portal for sharing training materials and courses, including a catalogue of trainers and course organizers, and an announcement service for training events. For course organizers, the portal provides opportunities to promote their training events; for trainers, the portal offers an environment for sharing materials, for gaining visibility for their work and promoting their skills; for trainees, it offers a convenient one-stop shop for finding suitable training resources and identifying relevant training events and activities locally and worldwide. Availability and implementation: http://mygoblet.org/training-portal CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alliances, affiliations, and partnerships continue to grow as one way for health care organizations to better serve their customers and compete with other organizations and networks. These organizational relationships are often promoted through co-branding joint programs and services. A study of consumers was conducted and shows that these organizational relationships positively affect consumer future behavior and benefit the organizations involved. Most importantly, the benefits of these organizational relationships grow as familiarity and understanding of the "new" partner in the market increases.
At least 20 continuity-of-care experiences are compulsory for student midwives in Australia, but little is known about this learning component. This paper presents an analysis of continuity experiences in one Region, incorporating diverse stakeholder perspectives from student midwives, maternity managers and registered midwives, with the aim of better understanding and optimizing experiences. Qualitative methods were utilized, employing mainly focus groups. Participants included 15 student midwives from the Regional University, 14 midwives and six managers, employed at the Regional referral hospital. Four themes were identified in the data; "woman-centred care", "counting the cost", "mutual benefits" and "into the future". The significant benefits of student continuity-of-care experiences were outlined by all three participant groups. Continuity experiences for student midwives facilitated the development of a woman-centred focus in the provision of maternity care. While the experience was challenging for students it was beneficial not only to them, but to registered midwives, the maternity services, and ultimately childbearing women. In order to appropriately prepare midwives for existing and future maternity services, and to continue to meet women's needs in all service delivery models, we require midwives who are well grounded in a woman-centred care philosophy and have had exposure to various care models.
midwifery relationships, especially ones developed over time, are viewed and valued as practical and political health interventions that increase the likelihood of good health for women and infants and assist with health challenges. Thus the continuity relationships with women required for each Bachelor of Midwifery student are used, not only to expand students learning but also, in a fragmented maternity care system, to provide opportunities for women to experience the care of a known person through their pregnancy, labour and early parenting time.
OBJECTIVE: by exploring midwives communication techniques intended to promote a wellness focus in the antenatal period, this study identified strategies midwives use to amplify womens own resources and capacities, with the aim of reducing antenatal anxiety. DESIGN: a qualitative design utilising focus groups as a means of generating data. SETTING: two Australian cities: Canberra, ACT and Sydney NSW. PARTICIPANTS: 14 experienced, practising midwives across two states/territories, employed in multiple hospitals and community settings. FINDINGS: three themes emerged from the analysis: calm unhurriedness, speaking in wellness and reassuring bodies. Midwives in these focus groups used strategies in antenatal care that could be co-ordinated into a planned process for wellness focussed care. KEY CONCLUSIONS: individually midwives used a variety of strategies specifically intended to facilitate womens capabilities, to employ worry usefully and to reduce anxiety. Midwives in the study clearly viewed this kind of wellness focussed care as their responsibility and their right. IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: the midwives collective wisdom could be shared and developed further into an overall salutogenic antenatal strategy to be used for the good of pregnant women and their infants.
The primary purpose of this article is to evaluate a proposal for a regional hospital to create a second Pulmonary Function Test laboratory (PFT lab) for outpatients. We separated the PFT lab from its departmental budget, thereby allowing a unique determination of the labs profitability. The labs separate financial analysis helped us to gain an understanding of the revenues and expenses of the PFT lab, providing information needed to comment on the proposed second lab. Additionally, we recommend a means for maintaining separate control over the PFT labs revenues and costs and ascertain the efficacy of instituting a separate budget for the PFT lab.
Customer advisory groups (CAGs) are formal groups of customers (referring physicians, patients, health insurance brokers, etc.) who meet regularly to share their ideas and to provide feedback to proposed or existing marketing strategies, programs, and activities. While CAGs are very prevalent in other industries they appear to be relatively underutilized in health care. This article provides an overview of how CAGs work, their advantages and disadvantages, tips on how to make them work better, and insights from interviews with 39 healthcare chief marketing officers on their use of CAGs.
Low temperatures in northern winters are energetically challenging for mammals, and a special energetic burden is expected for diminutive species like shrews, which are among the smallest of mammals. Surprisingly, shrews shrink their body size in winter and reduce body and brain mass, an effect known as Dehnels phenomenon, which is suggested to lower absolute energy intake requirements and thereby enhance survival when food availability is low. Yet reduced body size coupled with higher body-surface-to-mass ratio in these tiny mammals may result in thermoregulatory heat production at a given temperature constituting a larger proportion of the total energy expenditure. To evaluate energetic consequences of reduced body size in winter, we investigated common shrews Sorex araneus in northeastern Poland. Average body mass decreased by 19.0% from summer to winter, and mean skull depth decreased by 13.1%. There was no difference in Dehnels phenomenon between years despite different weather conditions. The whole-animal thermal conductance (proportional to absolute heat loss) in shrews was 19% lower in winter than in summer; the difference between the two seasons remained significant after correcting for body mass and was caused by improved fur insulation in winter. Thermogenic capacity of shrews, although much enhanced in winter, did not reach its full potential of increase, and this corresponded with relatively mild subnivean temperatures. These findings indicate that, despite their small body size, shrews effectively decrease their costs of thermoregulation. The recorded decrease in body mass from summer to winter resulted in a reduction of overall resting metabolic rate (in thermoneutrality) by 18%. This, combined with the reduced heat loss, should translate to food requirements that are substantially lower than would be the case if shrews did not undergo seasonal decrease in body mass.
According to life-history theory, investment in reproduction is associated with costs, which should appear as decreased survival to the next reproduction or lower future reproductive success. It has been suggested that oxidative stress may be the proximate mechanism of these trade-offs. Despite numerous studies of the defense against reactive oxygen species (ROS) during reproduction, very little is known about the damage caused by ROS to the tissues of wild breeding animals. We measured oxidative damage to lipids and proteins in breeding bank vole (Myodes glareolus) females after rearing one and two litters, and in non-breeding females. We used bank voles from lines selected for high maximum aerobic metabolic rates (which also had high resting metabolic rates and food intake) and non-selected control lines. The oxidative damage was determined in heart, kidneys and skeletal muscles by measuring the concentration of thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, as markers of lipid peroxidation, and carbonyl groups in proteins, as markers of protein oxidation. Surprisingly, we found that the oxidative damage to lipids in kidneys and muscles was actually lower in breeding than in non-breeding voles, and it did not differ between animals from the selected and control lines. Thus, contrary to our predictions, females that bred suffered lower levels of oxidative stress than those that did not reproduce. Elevated production of antioxidant enzymes and the protective role of sex hormones may explain the results. The results of the present study do not support the hypothesis that oxidative damage to tissues is the proximate mechanism of reproduction costs.
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