Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 256

Online Information Seeking: A Review of the Literature in the Health Domain

The development of the information technology and Internet has been transforming the healthcare industry. The internet is continuously accessed to seek for health information and there are variety of sources, including search engines, health websites, and social networking sites. Providing more and better information on health may empower individuals, however, ensuring a high quality and trusted health information could pose a challenge. Moreover, there is an ever-increasing amount of information available, but they are not necessarily accurate and up to date. Thus, this paper aims to provide an insight of the models and frameworks related to online health information seeking of consumers. It begins by exploring the definition of information behavior and information seeking to provide a better understanding of the concept of information seeking. In this study, critical factors such as performance expectancy, effort expectancy, and social influence will be studied in relation to the value of seeking health information. It also aims to analyze the effect of age, gender, and health status as the moderator on the factors that influence online health information seeking, i.e. trust and information quality. A preliminary survey will be carried out among the health professionals to clarify the research problems which exist in the real world, at the same time producing a conceptual framework. A final survey will be distributed to five states of Malaysia, to solicit the feedback on the framework. Data will be analyzed using SPSS and SmartPLS 3.0 analysis tools. It is hoped that at the end of this study, a novel framework that can improve online health information seeking is developed. Finally, this paper concludes with some suggestions on the models and frameworks that could improve online health information seeking.

A Real Time Ultra-Wideband Location System for Smart Healthcare
Driven by the demand of intelligent monitoring in rehabilitation centers or hospitals, a high accuracy real-time location system based on UWB (ultra-wideband) technology was proposed. The system measures precise location of a specific person, traces his movement and visualizes his trajectory on the screen for doctors or administrators. Therefore, doctors could view the position of the patient at any time and find them immediately and exactly when something emergent happens. In our design process, different algorithms were discussed, and their errors were analyzed. In addition, we discussed about a , simple but effective way of correcting the antenna delay error, which turned out to be effective. By choosing the best algorithm and correcting errors with corresponding methods, the system attained a good accuracy. Experiments indicated that the ranging error of the system is lower than 7 cm, the locating error is lower than 20 cm, and the refresh rate exceeds 5 times per second. In future works, by embedding the system in wearable IoT (Internet of Things) devices, it could provide not only physical parameters, but also the activity status of the patient, which would help doctors a lot in performing healthcare.
Development of Affordable and Reliable Diagnostic Tools to Record Vital Parameters for Improving Health Care in Low Resources Settings

In most developing countries, although the vast majority of the people are living in the rural areas, the qualified medical doctors are not available there. Health care workers and paramedics, called village doctors, informal healthcare providers, are largely responsible for the rural medical care. Mishaps due to wrong diagnosis and inappropriate medication have been causing serious suffering that is preventable. While innovators have created many devices, the vast majority of these technologies do not find applications to address the needs and conditions in low-resource settings. The primary motive is to address the acute lack of affordable medical technologies for the poor people in low-resource settings. A low cost smart medical device that is portable, battery operated and can be used at any point of care has been developed to detect breathing rate, electrocardiogram (ECG) and arterial pulse rate to improve diagnosis and monitoring of patients and thus improve care and safety. This simple and easy to use smart medical device can be used, managed and maintained effectively and safely by any health worker with some training. In order to empower the health workers and village doctors, our device is being further developed to integrate with ICT tools like smart phones and connect to the medical experts wherever available, to manage the serious health problems.

A Procedure for Post-Earthquake Damage Estimation Based on Detection of High-Frequency Transients
In the current research structural health monitoring is considered for addressing the critical issue of post-earthquake damage detection. A non-standard approach for damage detection via acoustic emission is presented - acoustic emissions are monitored in the low frequency range (up to 120 Hz). Such emissions are termed high-frequency transients. Further a damage indicator defined as the Time-Ratio Damage Indicator is introduced. The indicator relies on time-instance measurements of damage initiation and deformation peaks. Based on the time-instance measurements a procedure for estimation of the maximum drift ratio is proposed. Monitoring data is used from a shaking-table test of a full-scale reinforced concrete bridge pier. Damage of the experimental column is successfully detected and the proposed damage indicator is calculated.
Factors Determining Intention to Pursue Genetic Testing for People in Taiwan

The Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion proposed that the role of health services should shift the focus from cure to prevention. Nowadays, besides having physical examinations, people could also conduct genetic tests to provide important information for diagnosing, treating, and/or preventing illnesses. However, because of the incompletion of the Chinese Genetic Database, people in Taiwan were still unfamiliar with genetic testing. The purposes of the present study were to: (1) Figure out people’s attitudes towards genetic testing. (2) Examine factors that influence people’s intention to pursue genetic testing by means of the Health Belief Model (HBM). A pilot study was conducted on 249 Taiwanese in 2017 to test the feasibility of the self-developed instrument. The reliability and construct validity of scores on the self-developed questionnaire revealed that this HBM-based questionnaire with 40 items was a well-developed instrument. A total of 542 participants were recruited and the valid participants were 535 (99%) between the ages of 20 and 86. Descriptive statistics, one-way ANOVA, two-way contingency table analysis, Pearson’s correlation, and stepwise multiple regression analysis were used in this study. The main results were that only 32 participants (6%) had already undergone genetic testing; moreover, their attitude towards genetic testing was more positive than those who did not have the experience. Compared with people who never underwent genetic tests, those who had gone for genetic testing had higher self-efficacy, greater intention to pursue genetic testing, had academic majors in health-related fields, had chronic and genetic diseases, possessed Catastrophic Illness Cards, and all of them had heard about genetic testing. The variables that best predicted people’s intention to pursue genetic testing were cues to action, self-efficacy, and perceived benefits (the three variables all correlated with one another positively at high magnitudes). To sum up, the HBM could be effective in designing and identifying the needs and priorities of the target population to pursue genetic testing.

A Posterior Predictive Model-Based Control Chart for Monitoring Healthcare

Quality measurement and reporting systems are used in healthcare internationally. In Australia, the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards records and reports hundreds of clinical indicators (CIs) nationally across the healthcare system. These CIs are measures of performance in the clinical setting, and are used as a screening tool to help assess whether a standard of care is being met. Existing analysis and reporting of these CIs incorporate Bayesian methods to address sampling variation; however, such assessments are retrospective in nature, reporting upon the previous six or twelve months of data. The use of Bayesian methods within statistical process control for monitoring systems is an important pursuit to support more timely decision-making. Our research has developed and assessed a new graphical monitoring tool, similar to a control chart, based on the beta-binomial posterior predictive (BBPP) distribution to facilitate the real-time assessment of health care organizational performance via CIs. The BBPP charts have been compared with the traditional Bernoulli CUSUM (BC) chart by simulation. The more traditional “central” and “highest posterior density” (HPD) interval approaches were each considered to define the limits, and the multiple charts were compared via in-control and out-of-control average run lengths (ARLs), assuming that the parameter representing the underlying CI rate (proportion of cases with an event of interest) required estimation. Preliminary results have identified that the BBPP chart with HPD-based control limits provides better out-of-control run length performance than the central interval-based and BC charts. Further, the BC chart’s performance may be improved by using Bayesian parameter estimation of the underlying CI rate.

The Effects of Physical Activity and Serotonin on Depression, Anxiety, Body Image and Mental Health

Sport has found a special place as an effective phenomenon in all societies of the contemporary world. The relationship between physical activity and exercise with different sciences has provided new fields for human study. The range of issues related to exercise and physical education is such that it requires specialized sciences and special studies. In this article, the psychological and social sections of exercise have been investigated for children and adults. It can be used for anyone in different age groups. Exercise and regular physical movements have a great impact on the mental and social health of the individual in addition to body health. It affects the individual's adaptability in society and his/her personality. Exercise affects the treatment of diseases such as depression, anxiety, stress, body image, and memory. Exercise is a safe haven for young people to achieve the optimum human development in its shelter. The effects of sensorimotor skills on mental actions and mental development are such a way that many psychologists and sports science experts believe these activities should be included in training programs in the first place. Familiarity of students and scholars with different programs and methods of sensorimotor activities not only causes their mental actions; but also increases mental health and vitality, enhances self-confidence and, therefore, mental health.

Applying Resilience Engineering to improve Safety Management in a Construction Site: Design and Validation of a Questionnaire

Resilience Engineering is a new paradigm of safety management that proposes to change the way of managing the safety to focus on the things that go well instead of the things that go wrong. Many complex and high-risk sectors such as air traffic control, health care, nuclear power plants, railways or emergencies, have applied this new vision of safety and have obtained very positive results. In the construction sector, safety management continues to be a problem as indicated by the statistics of occupational injuries worldwide. Therefore, it is important to improve safety management in this sector. For this reason, it is proposed to apply Resilience Engineering to the construction sector. The Construction Phase Health and Safety Plan emerges as a key element for the planning of safety management. One of the key tools of Resilience Engineering is the Resilience Assessment Grid that allows measuring the four essential abilities (respond, monitor, learn and anticipate) for resilient performance. The purpose of this paper is to develop a questionnaire based on the Resilience Assessment Grid, specifically on the ability to learn, to assess whether a Construction Phase Health and Safety Plans helps companies in a construction site to implement this ability. The research process was divided into four stages: (i) initial design of a questionnaire, (ii) validation of the content of the questionnaire, (iii) redesign of the questionnaire and (iii) application of the Delphi method. The questionnaire obtained could be used as a tool to help construction companies to evolve from Safety-I to Safety-II. In this way, companies could begin to develop the ability to learn, which will serve as a basis for the development of the other abilities necessary for resilient performance. The following steps in this research are intended to develop other questions that allow evaluating the rest of abilities for resilient performance such as monitoring, learning and anticipating.

Safety Climate Assessment and Its Impact on the Productivity of Construction Enterprises

Research background: Problems related to the occupational health and decreasing level of safety occur commonly in the construction industry. Important factor in the occupational safety in construction industry is scaffold use. All scaffolds used in construction, renovation, and demolition shall be erected, dismantled and maintained in accordance with safety procedure. Increasing demand for new construction projects unfortunately still is linked to high level of occupational accidents. Therefore, it is crucial to implement concrete actions while dealing with scaffolds and risk assessment in construction industry, the way on doing assessment and liability of assessment is critical for both construction workers and regulatory framework. Unfortunately, professionals, who tend to rely heavily on their own experience and knowledge when taking decisions regarding risk assessment, may show lack of reliability in checking the results of decisions taken. Purpose of the article: The aim was to indicate crucial parameters that could be modeling with Risk Assessment Model (RAM) use for improving both building enterprise productivity and/or developing potential and safety climate. The developed RAM could be a benefit for predicting high-risk construction activities and thus preventing accidents occurred based on a set of historical accident data. Methodology/Methods: A RAM has been developed for assessing risk levels as various construction process stages with various work trades impacting different spheres of enterprise activity. This project includes research carried out by teams of researchers on over 60 construction sites in Poland and Portugal, under which over 450 individual research cycles were carried out. The conducted research trials included variable conditions of employee exposure to harmful physical and chemical factors, variable levels of stress of employees and differences in behaviors and habits of staff. Genetic modeling tool has been used for developing the RAM. Findings and value added: Common types of trades, accidents, and accident causes have been explored, in addition to suitable risk assessment methods and criteria. We have found that the initial worker stress level is more direct predictor for developing the unsafe chain leading to the accident rather than the workload, or concentration of harmful factors at the workplace or even training frequency and management involvement.

Interventions and Supervision in Mental Health Services: Experiences of a Working Group in Brazil

The Regional Conference to Restructure Psychiatric Care in Latin America, convened by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in 1990, oriented the Brazilian Federal Act in 2001 that stipulated the psychiatric reform which requires deinstitutionalization and community-based treatment. Since then, the 15 years’ experience of different working teams in mental health led an academic working group – supervisors from personal practices, professors and researchers – to discuss certain clinical issues, as well as supervisions, and to organize colloquia in different cities as a methodology. These colloquia count on the participation of different working teams from the cities in which they are held, with team members with different levels of educational degrees and prior experiences, in order to increase dialogue right where it does not always appear to be possible. The principal aim of these colloquia is to gain interlocution between practitioners and academics. Working with the theory of case constructions, this methodology revealed itself helpful in unfolding new solutions. The paper also observes that there is not always harmony between what the psychiatric reform demands and clinical ethics.

Safety Assessment of Traditional Ready-to-Eat Meat Products Vended at Retail Outlets in Kebbi and Sokoto States, Nigeria

Food safety is a significant and growing public health problem in the world and Nigeria as a developing country, since food-borne diseases are important contributors to the huge burden of sickness and death of humans. In Nigeria, traditional ready-to-eat meat products (RTE-MPs) like balangu, tsire, guru and dried meat products like kilishi, dambun nama, banda, were reported to be highly appreciated because of their eating qualities. The consumption of these products was considered as safe due to the treatments that are usually involved during their production process. However, during processing and handling, the products could be contaminated by pathogens that could cause food poisoning. Therefore, a hazard identification for pathogenic bacteria on some traditional RTE-MPs was conducted in Kebbi and Sokoto States, Nigeria. A total of 116 RTE-MPs (balangu-38, kilishi-39 and tsire-39) samples were obtained from retail outlets and analyzed using standard cultural microbiological procedures in general and selective enrichment media to isolate the target pathogens. A six-fold serial dilution was prepared and using the pour plating method, colonies were counted. Serial dilutions were selected based on the prepared pre-labeled Petri dishes for each sample. A volume of 10-12 ml of molten Nutrient agar cooled to 42-45°C was poured into each Petri dish and 1 ml each from dilutions of 102, 104 and 106 for every sample was respectively poured on a pre-labeled Petri plate after which colonies were counted. The isolated pathogens were identified and confirmed after series of biochemical tests. Frequencies and percentages were used to describe the presence of pathogens. The General Linear Model was used to analyze data on pathogen presence according to RTE-MPs and means were separated using the Tukey test at 0.05 confidence level. Of the 116 RTE-MPs samples collected, 35 (30.17%) samples were found to be contaminated with some tested pathogens. Prevalence results showed that Escherichia coli, salmonella and Staphylococcus aureus were present in the samples. Mean total bacterial count was 23.82×106 cfu/g. The frequency of individual pathogens isolated was; Staphylococcus aureus 18 (15.51%), Escherichia coli 12 (10.34%) and Salmonella 5 (4.31%). Also, among the RTE-MPs tested, the total bacterial counts were found to differ significantly (P < 0.05), with 1.81, 2.41 and 2.9×104 cfu/g for tsire, kilishi, and balangu, respectively. The study concluded that the presence of pathogenic bacteria in balangu could pose grave health risks to consumers, and hence, recommended good manufacturing practices in the production of balangu to improve the products’ safety.

Proposition of an Ontology of Diseases and Their Signs from Medical Ontologies Integration
To assist medical diagnosis, we propose a federation of several existing and open medical ontologies and terminologies. The goal is to merge the strengths of all these resources to provide clinicians the access to a variety of shared knowledges that can facilitate identification and association of human diseases and all of their available characteristic signs such as symptoms and clinical signs. This work results to an integration model loaded from target known ontologies of the bioportal platform such as DOID, MESH, and SNOMED for diseases selection, SYMP, and CSSO for all existing signs.
Obstruction to Treatments Meeting International Standards for Lyme and Relapsing Fever Borreliosis Patients

We reviewed how certain institutional policies and practices, as well as questionable research, are creating obstacles to care and informed consent for Lyme and relapsing fever Borreliosis patients. The interference is denying access to treatments that meet the internationally accepted standards as set by the Institute of Medicine. This obstruction to care contributes to significant human suffering, disability and negative economic effect across many nations and in many regions of the world. We note how evidence based medicine emphasizes the importance of clinical experience and patient-centered care and how these patients benefit significantly when their rights to choose among treatment options are upheld.  

A Pre-Assessment Questionnaire to Identify Healthcare Professionals’ Perception on Information Technology Implementation

Health information technologies promise higher quality, safer care and much more for both patients and professionals. Despite their promise, they are costly to develop and difficult to implement. On the other hand, user acceptance and usage determine the success of implemented information technology in healthcare. This study provides a model to understand health professionals’ perception and expectation of health information technology. Extensive literature review has been conducted to determine the main factors to be measured. A questionnaire has been designed as a measurement model and submitted to the personnel of an in vitro fertilization clinic. The respondents’ degree of agreement according to five-point Likert scale was 72% for convenient access to data and 69.4% for the importance of data security. There was a significant difference in acceptance of electronic data storage for female respondents. Also, other significant differences between professions were obtained.

A Close Study on the Nitrate Fertilizer Use and Environmental Pollution for Human Health in Iran

Nitrogen accumulates in soils during the process of fertilizer addition to promote the plant growth. When the organic matter decomposes, the form of available nitrogen produced is in the form of nitrate, which is highly mobile. The most significant health effect of nitrate ingestion is methemoglobinemia in infants under six months of age (blue baby syndrome). The mobile nutrients, like nitrate nitrogen, are not stored in the soil as the available forms for the long periods and in large amounts. It depends on the needs for the crops such as vegetables. On the other hand, the vegetables will compete actively for nitrate nitrogen as a mobile nutrient and water. The mobile nutrients must be shared. The fewer the plants, the larger this share is for each plant. Also, this nitrate nitrogen is poisonous for the people who use these vegetables. Nitrate is converted to nitrite by the existing bacteria in the stomach and the Gastro-Intestinal (GI) tract. When nitrite is entered into the blood cells, it converts the hemoglobin to methemoglobin, which causes the anoxemia and cyanosis. The increasing use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers, especially the fertilizers with nitrates compounds, which have been common for the increased production of agricultural crops, has caused the nitrate pollution in the (soil, water, and environment). They have caused a lot of damage to humans and animals. In this research, the nitrate accumulation in different kind of vegetables such as; green pepper, tomatoes, egg plants, watermelon, cucumber, and red pepper were observed in the suburbs of Mashhad, Neisabour, and Sabzevar cities. In some of these cities, the information forms of agronomical practices collected were such as; different vegetable crops fertilizer recommendations, varieties, pesticides, irrigation schedules, etc., which were filled out by some of our colleagues in the research areas mentioned above. Analysis of the samples was sent to the soil and water laboratory in our department in Mashhad. The final results from the chemical analysis of samples showed that the mean levels of nitrates from the samples of the fruit crops in the mentioned cities above were all lower than the critical levels. These fruit crop samples were in the order of: 35.91, 8.47, 24.81, 6.03, 46.43, 2.06 mg/kg dry matter, for the following crops such as; tomato, cucumber, eggplant, watermelon, green pepper, and red pepper. Even though, this study was conducted with limited samples and by considering the mean levels, the use of these crops from the nutritional point of view will not cause the poisoning of humans.

Power Transformer Risk-Based Maintenance by Optimization of Transformer Condition and Transformer Importance
This paper presents a risk-based maintenance strategy of a power transformer in order to optimize operating and maintenance costs. The methodology involves the study and preparation of a database for the collection the technical data and test data of a power transformer. An evaluation of the overall condition of each transformer is performed by a program developed as a result of the measured results; in addition, the calculation of the main equipment separation to the overall condition of the transformer (% HI) and the criteria for evaluating the importance (% ImI) of each location where the transformer is installed. The condition assessment is performed by analysis test data such as electrical test, insulating oil test and visual inspection. The condition of the power transformer will be classified from very poor to very good condition. The importance is evaluated from load criticality, importance of load and failure consequence. The risk matrix is developed for evaluating the risk of each power transformer. The high risk power transformer will be focused firstly. The computerized program is developed for practical use, and the maintenance strategy of a power transformer can be effectively managed.
Apparent Temperature Distribution on Scaffoldings during Construction Works

People on construction scaffoldings work in dynamically changing, often unfavourable climate. Additionally, this kind of work is performed on low stiffness structures at high altitude, which increases the risk of accidents. It is therefore desirable to define the parameters of the work environment that contribute to increasing the construction worker occupational safety level. The aim of this article is to present how changes in microclimate parameters on scaffolding can impact the development of dangerous situations and accidents. For this purpose, indicators based on the human thermal balance were used. However, use of this model under construction conditions is often burdened by significant errors or even impossible to implement due to the lack of precise data. Thus, in the target model, the modified parameter was used – apparent environmental temperature. Apparent temperature in the proposed Scaffold Use Risk Assessment Model has been a perceived outdoor temperature, caused by the combined effects of air temperature, radiative temperature, relative humidity and wind speed (wind chill index, heat index). In the paper, correlations between component factors and apparent temperature for facade scaffolding with a width of 24.5 m and a height of 42.3 m, located at south-west side of building are presented. The distribution of factors on the scaffolding has been used to evaluate fitting of the microclimate model. The results of the studies indicate that observed ranges of apparent temperature on the scaffolds frequently results in a worker’s inability to adapt. This leads to reduced concentration and increased fatigue, adversely affects health, and consequently increases the risk of dangerous situations and accidental injuries

A Location-Allocation-Routing Model for a Home Health Care Supply Chain Problem

With increasing life expectancy in developed countries, the role of home care services is highlighted by both academia and industrial contributors in Home Health Care Supply Chain (HHCSC) companies. The main decisions in such supply chain systems are the location of pharmacies, the allocation of patients to these pharmacies and also the routing and scheduling decisions of nurses to visit their patients. In this study, for the first time, an integrated model is proposed to consist of all preliminary and necessary decisions in these companies, namely, location-allocation-routing model. This model is a type of NP-hard one. Therefore, an Imperialist Competitive Algorithm (ICA) is utilized to solve the model, especially in large sizes. Results confirm the efficiency of the developed model for HHCSC companies as well as the performance of employed ICA.

Forecasting of Scaffolding Work Comfort Parameters Based on Data from Meteorological Stations
Work at height, such as construction works on scaffoldings, is associated with a considerable risk. Scaffolding workers are usually exposed to changing weather conditions what can additionally increase the risk of dangerous situations. Therefore, it is very important to foresee the risk of adverse conditions to which the worker may be exposed. The data from meteorological stations may be used to asses this risk. However, the dependency between weather conditions on a scaffolding and in the vicinity of meteorological station, should be determined. The paper presents an analysis of two selected environmental parameters which have influence on the behavior of workers – air temperature and wind speed. Measurements of these parameters were made between April and November of 2016 on ten scaffoldings located in different parts of Poland. They were compared with the results taken from the meteorological stations located closest to the studied scaffolding. The results gathered from the construction sites and meteorological stations were not the same, but statistical analyses have shown that they were correlated.
Towards Better Quality in Healthcare and Operations Management: A Developmental Literature Review

This work presents the various perspectives, dimensions, components and definitions given to quality in the operations management (OM) and healthcare services (HCS) literature in time, highlighting gaps and learning opportunities between the two disciplines through a thorough search into their rich and distinct body of knowledge. Greater and new insights about the general nature of quality are obtained with findings such as in OM, quality has been approached in six fairly distinct paradigms (excellence, value, conformity to specifications, attributes, satisfaction and meeting or exceeding customer expectations), whereas in HCS, two approaches are prominent (Donabedian’s structure, process and outcomes model and Lohr and Schroeder’s circumscribed definition). The two disciplines views on quality seem to have progressed much in parallel with little cross-learning from each other. This work then proposes an encompassing definition of quality as a lever and suggests further research and development avenues for a better use of the concept of quality by academics and practitioners alike toward the goals of greater organizational performance and improved management in healthcare and possibly other service domains.

The Effects of Pilates and McKenzie Exercises on Quality of Life and Lumbar Spine Position Sense in Patients with Low Back Pain: A Comparative Study with a 4-Week Follow-Up

Non-specific chronic low back pain (NSCLBP) is a common condition with no exact diagnosis and mechanism for its occurrence. Recently, different therapeutic exercises have taken into account to manage NSCLBP. So, the aim of this study has mainly been placed on comparing the effects of Pilates and Mackenzie exercises on quality of life (QOL) lumbar spine position sense (LSPS) in patients with NSCLBP. In this randomized clinical trial, 47 patients with NSCLBP were voluntarily divided into three groups of Pilates (n=16) (with mean age 37.1 ± 9.5 years, height 168.9 ± 7.4 cm, body mass 76.1 ± 5.9 k), McKenzie (n=15) (with mean age 42.7 ± 8.1 years, height 165.7 ± 6.8, body mass 74.1 ± 4.8 kg) and control (n=16) (with mean age 39.3 ± 9.8 years, height 168.1 ± 8.1 cm, body mass 74.2 ± 5.8 kg). Primary outcome included QOL and secondary was LSPS. Both variables were assessed by the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaires and electrogoniameter, respectively. The measurements were performed at baseline, following a 6-week intervention, and after a 4-week follow-up. The ANCOVA test at P < 0.05 was administrated to analyze the collected data using SPSS software. There was a statistically significant difference between experimental groups and the control group to improve QOL. But, no difference was seen regarding the effects of two exercises on LSPS (p < 0.05). Both Pilates and Mackenzie exercises demonstrated improvement in QOL after 6-week intervention and a 4-week follow-up while none of them considerably affected LSPS. Further studies are required to establish a supporting evidence for the effectiveness of two exercises on NSCLBP.

Assessment of Noise Pollution in the City of Biskra, Algeria
In this research, a quantitative assessment of the urban sound environment of the city of Biskra, Algeria, was conducted. To determine the quality of the soundscape based on in-situ measurement, using a Landtek SL5868P sound level meter in 47 points, which have been identified to represent the whole city. The result shows that the urban noise level varies from 55.3 dB to 75.8 dB during the weekdays and from 51.7 dB to 74.3 dB during the weekend. On the other hand, we can also note that 70.20% of the results of the weekday measurements and 55.30% of the results of the weekend measurements have levels of sound intensity that exceed the levels allowed by Algerian law and the recommendations of the World Health Organization. These very high urban noise levels affect the quality of life, the acoustic comfort and may even pose multiple risks to people's health.
The Emotional Life of Patients with Chronic Diseases: A Framework for Health Promotion Strategies

Being a patient with a chronic disease is both a physical and emotional experience. The ability to recognize a patient’s emotional health is an important part of a health care provider’s skills. For the purposes of this paper, emotional health is viewed as the way that we feel, and the way that our feelings affect us. Understanding the patient’s emotional health leads to improved provider-patient relationships and health outcomes. For example, when a patient first hears his or her diagnosis from a provider, they might find it difficult to cope with their emotions. Struggling to cope with emotions interferes with the patient’s ability to read, understand, and act on health information and services. As a result, the patient becomes more frustrated and confused, creating barriers to accessing healthcare services. These barriers are challenging for both the patient and their healthcare providers. There are five basic emotions that are part of who we are and are always with us: fear, anger, sadness, joy, and compassion. Living with a chronic disease however can cause a patient to experience and express these emotions in new and unique ways. Within the provider-patient relationship, there needs to be an understanding that each patient experiences these five emotions and, experiences them at different times. In response to this need, the paper highlights a health promotion framework for patients with chronic disease. This framework emphasizes the emotional health of patients.

Exploring the Situational Approach to Decision Making: User eConsent on a Health Social Network

Situation Awareness can offer the potential for conscious dynamic reflection. In an era of online health data sharing, it is becoming increasingly important that users of health social networks (HSNs) have the information necessary to make informed decisions as part of the registration process and in the provision of eConsent. This research aims to leverage an adapted Situation Awareness (SA) model to explore users’ decision making processes in the provision of eConsent. A HSN platform was used to investigate these behaviours. A mixed methods approach was taken. This involved the observation of registration behaviours followed by a questionnaire and focus group/s. Early results suggest that users are apt to automatically accept eConsent, and only later consider the long-term implications of sharing their personal health information. Further steps are required to continue developing knowledge and understanding of this important eConsent process. The next step in this research will be to develop a set of guidelines for the improved presentation of eConsent on the HSN platform.

An Immersive Serious Game for Firefighting and Evacuation Training in Healthcare Facilities

In healthcare facilities, training the staff for firefighting and evacuation in real buildings is very challenging due to the presence of a vulnerable population in such an environment. In a standard environment, traditional approaches, such as fire drills, are often used to train the occupants and provide them with information about fire safety procedures. However, those traditional approaches may be inappropriate for a vulnerable population and can be inefficient from an educational viewpoint as it is impossible to expose the occupants to scenarios similar to a real emergency. Immersive serious games could be used as an alternative to traditional approaches to overcome their limitations. Serious games are already being used in different safety domains such as fires, earthquakes and terror attacks for several building types (e.g., office buildings, train stations, tunnels, etc.). In this study, we developed an immersive serious game to improve the fire safety skills of staff in healthcare facilities. An accurate representation of the healthcare environment was built in Unity3D by including visual and audio stimuli inspired from those employed in commercial action games. The serious game is organised in three levels. In each of them, the trainee is presented with a specific fire emergency and s/he can perform protective actions (e.g., firefighting, helping non-ambulant occupants, etc.) or s/he can ignore the opportunity for action and continue the evacuation. In this paper, we describe all the steps required to develop such a prototype, as well as the key questions that need to be answered, to develop a serious game for firefighting and evacuation in healthcare facilities.

Critical Approach to Define the Architectural Structure of a Health Prototype in a Rural Area of Brazil
A primary healthcare facility in developing countries should be a multifunctional space able to respond to different requirements: Flexibility, modularity, aggregation and reversibility. These basic features could be better satisfied if applied to an architectural artifact that complies with the typological, figurative and constructive aspects of the context in which it is located. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to identify a procedure that can define the figurative aspects of the architectural structure of the health prototype for the marginal areas of developing countries through a critical approach. The application context is the rural areas of the Northeast of Bahia in Brazil. The prototype should be located in the rural district of Quingoma, in the municipality of Lauro de Freitas, a particular place where there is still a cultural fusion of black and indigenous populations. Based on the historical analysis of settlement strategies and architectural structures in spaces of public interest or collective use, this paper aims to provide a procedure able to identify the categories and rules underlying typological and figurative aspects, in order to detect significant and generalizable elements, as well as materials and constructive techniques typically adopted in the rural areas of Brazil. The object of this work is therefore not only the recovery of certain constructive approaches but also the development of a procedure that integrates the requirements of the primary healthcare prototype with its surrounding economic, social, cultural, settlement and figurative conditions.
Consumer Choice Determinants in Context of Functional Food
The aim of this study was to analyze and evaluate the consumption of functional food by consumers by: age, sex, formal education level, place of residence and diagnosed diseases. The study employed an ad hoc questionnaire in a group of 300 inhabitants of Upper Silesia voivodship. Knowledge of functional food among the group covered in the study was far from satisfactory. The choice of functional food was of intuitive character. In addition, the group covered was more likely to choose pharmacotherapy instead of diet-related prevention then, which can be associated with presumption of too distant effects and a long period of treatment.
High-Value Health System for All: Technologies for Promoting Health Education and Awareness

Health for all is considered as a sign of well-being and inclusive growth. New healthcare technologies are contributing to the quality of human lives by promoting health education and awareness, leading to the prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of the symptoms of diseases. Healthcare technologies have now migrated from the medical and institutionalized settings to the home and everyday life. This paper explores these new technologies and investigates how they contribute to health education and awareness, promoting the objective of high-value health system for all. The methodology used for the research is literature review. The paper also discusses the opportunities and challenges with futuristic healthcare technologies. The combined advances in genomics medicine, wearables and the IoT with enhanced data collection in electronic health record (EHR) systems, environmental sensors, and mobile device applications can contribute in a big way to high-value health system for all. The promise by these technologies includes reduced total cost of healthcare, reduced incidence of medical diagnosis errors, and reduced treatment variability. The major barriers to adoption include concerns with security, privacy, and integrity of healthcare data, regulation and compliance issues, service reliability, interoperability and portability of data, and user friendliness and convenience of these technologies.

Evaluation of the Effect of Nursing Services Provided in a Correctional Institution on the Physical Health Levels and Health Behaviors of Female Inmates

Female inmates placed in a Correctional Institution (CI) have more physical health problems than other women and their male counterparts. Thus, they require more health care services in the CI and nursing services in particular. CI nurses also have the opportunity to teach behaviors which will protect and improve their health to these women who are difficult to reach in the community. The aim of this study was to evaluate effect of nursing services provided in a CI on the physical health levels and health behaviors of female inmates. The study has a quasi-experimental design. The study was done in Female Closed CI in Ankara, Turkey. The study was conducted on 30 female inmates. Before the implementation of nursing interventions in the initial phase of the study, female inmates were evaluated in terms of physical health problems and health behavior using forms, a physical examination, medical history, health files (file containing medical information related to prisons) and the Omaha System (OS). Findings obtained from evaluations were grouped and symptoms-findings were expressed with OS diagnosis codes. Knowledge, behavior and status scores of prisoners in relation to health problems were determined. After the implementation of the nursing interventions, female inmates were evaluated in terms of physical health problems and health behavior using OS. The research data were collected using the Female Evaluation Form developed by the researcher and the OS. It was found that knowledge, behavior and status scores of prisoners significantly increased after the implementation of nursing interventions (p < 0.05).

Using Knowledge Management and Visualisation Concepts to Improve Patients and Hospitals Staff Workflow

This paper focuses on using knowledge management and visualisation concepts to improve the patients and hospitals employee’s workflow. Hospitals workflow is a complex and complicated process and poor patient flow can put both patients and a hospital’s reputation at risk, and can threaten the facility’s financial sustainability. Healthcare leaders are under increased pressure to reduce costs while maintaining or increasing patient care standards. In this paper, a framework is proposed to help improving patient experience, staff satisfaction, and operational efficiency across hospitals by using knowledge management based visualisation concepts. This framework is using real-time visibility to track and monitor location and status of patients, staff, rooms, and medical equipment.

Vol:13 No:01 2019
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