(1/296) Home care of high risk pregnant women by advanced practice nurses: nurse time consumed.

This study examined the time spent by advanced practice nurses (APNs) in providing prenatal care to women with high risk pregnancies. The results indicate that the overall mean APN time spent in providing prenatal care was 51.3 hours per woman. The greatest amount of time was spent in the clinic and women with pregestational diabetes consumed the most APN time and required the most contacts. Historically, home care services have been measured by number of visits or contacts. This study assists home care nurses and administrators to consider additional measurements including time spent.  (+info)

(2/296) Cooperation or conflict over child health surveillance? Views of key actors.

OBJECTIVE: To describe the views of general practitioners, health visitors, and clinical medical officers on child health surveillance, recent changes, perceptions of each other's roles, and attitudes to audit. DESIGN: Postal questionnaire survey. SETTING: Three health districts in North West Thames health region. SUBJECTS: All 602 general practitioners, 272 health visitors, and 42 clinical medical officers in these districts. MAIN MEASURES: Attitudes to and perceptions of child health surveillance and audit. Questionnaires were completed by 440 general practitioners (response rate 73%), 164 health visitors (60%), and 39 clinical medical officers (93%). RESULTS: Attitudes to child health surveillance were less positive among general practitioners than health visitors or clinical medical officers. Few respondents agreed that child health surveillance was a cost effective use of general practitioners' time (general practitioners 28%, 113/407; health visitors 28%, 40/145; clinical medical officers 39%, 15/39) and most thought that health visitors should carry out more of the doctors' examinations (68%, 262/387; 65%, 89/136; 66%, 25/38). General practitioners thought that clinical medical officers were less supportive than other relevant groups of their doing more child health surveillance. Most (72%, 105/146) health visitors thought that the 1990 contract had reduced parental choice of where to attend for child health surveillance. General practitioners were less enthusiastic than health visitors about most forms of clinical audit. CONCLUSIONS: Despite reservations about the impact of recent changes all groups were willing to explore innovative ways of delivering child health surveillance. IMPLICATIONS: There is scope for health visitors to increase their responsibilities and for more varied relationships between general practitioners and community child health doctors.  (+info)

(3/296) Changing preventive practice: a controlled trial on the effects of outreach visits to organise prevention of cardiovascular disease.

OBJECTIVES: To assess the effects of outreach visits by trained nurse facilitators on the organisation of services used to prevent cardiovascular disease. To identify the characteristics of general practices that determined success. DESIGN: A non-randomised controlled trial of two methods of implementing guidelines to organise prevention of cardiovascular disease: an innovative outreach visit method compared with a feedback method. The results in both groups were compared with data from a control group. SETTING AND SUBJECTS: 95 general practices in two regions in The Netherlands. INTERVENTIONS: Trained nurse facilitators visited practices, focusing on solving problems in the organisation of prevention. They applied a four step model in each practice. The number of visits depended on the needs of the practice team. The feedback method consisted of the provision of a feedback report with advice specific to each practice and standardised instructions. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The proportion of practices adhering to 10 different guidelines. Guidelines were on the detection of patients at risk, their follow up, the registration of preventive activities, and teamwork within the practice. RESULTS: Outreach visits were more effective than feedback in implementing guidelines to organise prevention. Within the group with outreach visits, the increase in the number of practices adhering to the guidelines was significant for six out of 10 guidelines. Within the feedback group, a comparison of data before and after intervention showed no significant differences. Partnerships and practices with a computer changed more. CONCLUSION: Outreach visits by trained nurse facilitators proved to be effective in implementing guidelines within general practices, probably because their help was practical and designed for the individual practice, guided by the wishes and capabilities of the practice team.  (+info)

(4/296) The contribution of interagency collaboration to the promotion of young people's sexual health.

This paper employs a case study approach in order to examine the contribution of interagency working to the delivery of education and services in the difficult field of young people's sexual health. It reports on a collaborative UK initiative involving teachers, community health practitioners, health promotion staff, and youth and community workers. The provision included school-based sex education, drop-in advice and information facilities, 'detached' street work, and a young person's clinic. A qualitative study was completed involving detailed interviews with 25 staff from the different agencies involved. The findings suggest that interagency collaboration can enhance the work of each organization, and can achieve a comprehensive response to young people's sexual health needs by making positive use of the distinctive roles, skills, knowledge and approaches of the different agencies. The potential that such a collaboration will have a significant impact on young people's sexual health is discussed.  (+info)

(5/296) A randomised controlled trial of specialist health visitor intervention for failure to thrive.

AIMS: To determine whether home intervention by a specialist health visitor affects the outcome of children with failure to thrive. METHODS: Children referred for failure to thrive were randomised to receive conventional care, or conventional care and additional specialist home visiting for 12 months. Outcomes measured were growth, diet, use of health care resources, and Bayley, HAD (hospital anxiety and depression), and behavioural scales. RESULTS: Eighty three children, aged 4-30 months, were enrolled, 42 received specialist health visitor intervention. Children in both groups showed good weight gain (mean (SD) increase in weight SD score for the specialist health visitor intervention group 0.59 (0.63) v 0.42 (0.62) for the control group). Children < 12 months in the intervention group showed a higher mean (SD) increase in weight SD score than the control group (0.82 (0.86) v 0.42 (0.79)). Both groups improved in developmental score and energy intake. No significant differences were found for the primary outcome measures, but controls had significantly more dietary referrals, social service involvement, and hospital admissions, and were less compliant with appointments. CONCLUSIONS: The study failed to show that specialist health visitor intervention conferred additional benefits for the child. However, the specialist health visitor did provide a more coordinated approach, with significant savings in terms of health service use. Problems inherent to health service research are discussed.  (+info)

(6/296) Primary care group commissioning of services: the differing priorities of general practitioners and district nurses for palliative care services.

BACKGROUND: General practitioners (GPs) have become more responsible for budget allocation over the years. The 1997 White Paper has signalled major changes in GPs' roles in commissioning. In general, palliative care is ranked as a high priority, and such services are therefore likely to be early candidates for commissioning. AIM: To examine the different commissioning priorities within the primary health care team (PHCT) by ascertaining the views of GPs and district nurses (DNs) concerning their priorities for the future planning of local palliative care services and the adequacy of services as currently provided. METHOD: A postal questionnaire survey was sent to 167 GP principals and 96 registered DNs in the Cambridge area to ascertain ratings of service development priority and service adequacy, for which written comments were received. RESULTS: Replies were received from 141 (84.4%) GPs and 86 (90%) DNs. Both professional groups agreed that the most important service developments were urgent hospice admission for symptom control or terminal care, and Marie Curie nurses. GPs gave greater priority than DNs to specialist doctor home visits and Macmillan nurses. DNs gave greater priority than GPs to Marie Curie nurses, hospital-at-home, non-cancer patients' urgent hospice admission, day care, and hospice outpatients. For each of the eight services where significant differences were found in perceptions of service adequacy, DNs rated the service to be less adequate than GPs. CONCLUSION: The 1997 White Paper, The New NHS, has indicated that the various forms of GP purchasing are to be replaced by primary care groups (PCGs), in which both GPs and DNs are to be involved in commissioning decisions. For many palliative care services, DNs' views of service adequacy and priorities for future development differ significantly from their GP colleagues; resolution of these differences will need to be attained within PCGs. Both professional groups give high priority to the further development of quick-response clinical services, especially urgent hospice admission and Marie Curie nurses.  (+info)

(7/296) Do practice-based preventive child health services affect the use of hospitals? A cross-sectional study of hospital use by children in east London.

BACKGROUND: Acute paediatric admissions have risen steadily over the past 20 years. During the same period, practice-based child health clinics have increased, although provision is less common in areas of deprivation where hospital use is greatest. AIM: To investigate the contribution of practice-based, preventive child health services to rates of hospital utilisation in children under five years of age. METHOD: A cross-sectional retrospective study examining practice variations in paediatric acute admissions, outpatient referrals, and accident and emergency (A&E) department attendances in the East London and the City Health authority, including all 164 practices in the inner-city boroughs of Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets, and the City of London. The main outcome measures were practice-based paediatric hospital attendance rates, for discrete age and sex bands, for the year to 31 March 1996. RESULTS: Hospital use varied with age and sex, with the rates being highest for the youngest children and for boys. The median A&E attendance rate (including reattendances) for boys up to one year of age was 897 per thousand children per practice. In east London, 62% of practices are registered for child health surveillance and 71% provide a child health clinic. Practice approval for child health surveillance, and the provision of child health clinics, did not account for differences between practices in hospital use, but proportionally greater health visiting hours were significantly related to lower rates of emergency hospital admission by young children. Multivariate analyses revealed that up to 23% of the variation between practice admission rates could be explained by health visiting hours. CONCLUSIONS: We found significant associations between the amount of health visiting time available to the practice population and rates of acute admission and outpatient referral among children up to five years of age. These findings suggest that increasing health visitor provision could contribute to lower paediatric emergency admission and outpatient referral rates. A small change would have a significant effect, particularly among the youngest children, given that during the study year 10,000 children under two years of age in east London were either admitted or referred to hospital.  (+info)

(8/296) A sustainable programme to prevent falls and near falls in community dwelling older people: results of a randomised trial.

STUDY OBJECTIVE: In the causative mechanism of falls among older community dwellers, slips and trips have been found to be significant precursors. The purpose of the two year trial was to assess the effectiveness of multi-component interventions targeting major risk factors for falls in reducing the incidence of slips, trips and falls among the well, older community. DESIGN: Four groups with approximately equal numbers of participants were randomly allocated to interventions. The prevention strategies included education and awareness raising of falls risk factors, exercise sessions to improve strength and balance, home safety advice to modify environmental hazards, and medical assessment to optimise health. The interventions combined the strategies in an add on approach. The first intervention group receiving the information session only was regarded as the control. The outcome of interest was the occurrence of a slip, trip or fall, monitored prospectively using a daily calendar diary. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING: Two hundred and fifty two members of the National Seniors Association in the Brisbane district agreed to participate. National Seniors clubs provide a forum for active, community dwelling Australians aged 50 and over to participate in policy, personal development and recreation. MAIN RESULTS: Using Cox's proportional hazards regression model, adjusted hazard ratios comparing intervention groups with the control ranged from 0.35 (95% CI 0.17, 0.73) to 0.48 (0.25, 0.91) for slips; 0.29 (0.16, 0.51) to 0.45 (0.27, 0.74) for trips; and 0.60 (0.36, 1.01) to 0.82 (0.51, 1.31) for falls. While calendar monitoring recorded outcome, it was also assessed as a prevention strategy by comparing the intervention groups with a hypothetical nonintervened group. At one year after intervention, reductions in the probability of slips, trips and falls (61 (95% CI 54, 66)%; 56 (49, 63)%; 29 (22, 36)% respectively) were demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: This study makes an important contribution to the priority community health issue of falls prevention by showing that effective, sustainable, low cost programmes can be introduced through community-based organisations to reduce the incidence of slips, trips and falls in well older people.  (+info)