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(1/1632) Randomised controlled trial of effect of feedback on general practitioners' prescribing in Australia.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effect on general practitioners' prescribing of feedback on their levels of prescribing. DESIGN: Randomised controlled trial. SETTING: General practice in rural Australia. PARTICIPANTS: 2440 full time recognised general practitioners practising in non-urban areas. INTERVENTION: Two sets of graphical displays (6 months apart) of their prescribing rates for 2 years, relative to those of their peers, were posted to participants. Data were provided for five main drug groups and were accompanied by educational newsletters. The control group received no information on their prescribing. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Prescribing rates in the intervention and control groups for the five main drug groups, total prescribing and potential substitute prescribing and ordering before and after the interventions. RESULTS: The intervention and control groups had similar baseline characteristics (age, sex, patient mix, practices). Median prescribing rates for the two groups were almost identical before and after the interventions. Any changes in prescribing observed in the intervention group were also seen in the control group. There was no evidence that feedback reduced the variability in prescribing nor did it differentially affect the very high or very low prescribers. CONCLUSIONS: The form of feedback evaluated here-mailed, unsolicited, centralised, government sponsored, and based on aggregate data-had no impact on the prescribing levels of general practitioners.  (+info)

(2/1632) Canada's "disasters-R-us" medical platoon a hit in Honduras.

The Canadian Forces Disaster Assistance Response Team did not take long to adapt to the medical needs of 90,000 survivors of Hurricane Mitch last November.  (+info)

(3/1632) Residents' exposure to aboriginal health issues. Survey of family medicine programs in Canada.

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether Canadian family medicine residency programs currently have objectives, staff, and clinical experiences for adequately exposing residents to aboriginal health issues. DESIGN: A one-page questionnaire was developed to survey the details of teaching about and exposure to aboriginal health issues. SETTING: Family medicine programs in Canada. PARTICIPANTS: All Canadian family medicine program directors in the 18 programs (16 at universities and two satellite programs) were surveyed between October 1997 and March 1998. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Whether programs had teaching objectives for exposing residents to aboriginal health issues, whether they had resource people available, what elective and core experiences in aboriginal health were offered, and what types of experiences were available. RESULTS: Response rate was 100%. No programs had formal, written curriculum objectives for residency training in aboriginal health issues, although some were considering them. Some programs, however, had objectives for specific weekend or day sessions. No programs had a strategy for encouraging enrollment of residents of aboriginal origin. Eleven programs had at least one resource person with experience in aboriginal health issues, and 12 had access to community-based aboriginal groups. Core experiences were all weekend seminars or retreats. Elective experiences in aboriginal health were available in 16 programs, and 11 programs were active on reserves. CONCLUSIONS: Many Canadian family medicine programs give residents some exposure to aboriginal health issues, but most need more expertise and direction on these issues. Some programs have unique approaches to teaching aboriginal health care that could be shared. Formalized objectives derived in collaboration with other family medicine programs and aboriginal groups could substantially improve the quality of education in aboriginal health care in Canada.  (+info)

(4/1632) Pap screening clinics with native women in Skidegate, Haida Gwaii. Need for innovation.

PROBLEM ADDRESSED: First Nations women in British Columbia, especially elders, are underscreened for cancer of the cervix compared with the general population and are much more likely to die of the disease than other women. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM: To develop a pilot program, in consultation with community representatives, to address the Pap screening needs of First Nations women 40 years and older on a rural reserve. MAIN COMPONENTS OF PROGRAM: Identification of key links to the population; consultation with the community to design an outreach process; identification of underscreened women; implementation of community Pap screening clinics; evaluation of the pilot program. CONCLUSIONS: We developed a Pap screening outreach program that marked a departure from the usual screening approach in the community. First Nations community health representatives were key links for the process that involved family physicians and office staff at a local clinic on a rural reserve. Participation rate for the pilot program was 48%, resulting in an increase of 15% over the previously recorded screening rate for this population. More screening clinics of this type and evaluation for sustainability are proposed.  (+info)

(5/1632) Comprehensive computerized diabetes registry. Serving the Cree of Eeyou Istchee (eastern James Bay).

PROBLEM BEING ADDRESSED: Diabetes is rapidly evolving as a major health concern in the Cree population of eastern James Bay (Eeyou Istchee). The Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay (CBHSSJB) diabetes registry was the initial phase in the development of a comprehensive program for diabetes in this region. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM: The CBHSSJB diabetes registry was developed to provide a framework to track the prevalence of diabetes and the progression of diabetic complications. The database will also identify patients not receiving appropriate clinical and laboratory screening for diabetic complications, and will provide standardized clinical flow sheets for routine patient management. MAIN COMPONENTS OF PROGRAM: The CBHSSJB diabetes registry uses a system of paper registration forms and clinical flow sheets kept in the nine community clinics. Information from these sheets is entered into a computer database annually. The flow sheets serve as a guideline for appropriate management of patients with diabetes, and provide a one-page summary of relevant clinical and laboratory information. CONCLUSIONS: A diabetes registry is vital to follow the progression of diabetes and diabetic complications in the region served by the CBHSSJB. The registry system incorporates both a means for regional epidemiologic monitoring of diabetes mellitus and clinical tools for managing patients with the disease.  (+info)

(6/1632) Obstetrics anyone? How family medicine residents' interests changed.

OBJECTIVE: To determine family medicine residents' attitudes and plans about practising obstetrics when they enter and when they graduate from their residency programs. DESIGN: Residents in each of 4 consecutive years, starting July 1991, were surveyed by questionnaire when they entered the program and again when they graduated (ending in June 1996). Only paired questionnaires were used for analysis. SETTING: Family medicine residency programs at the University of Toronto in Ontario. PARTICIPANTS: Of 358 family medicine residents who completed the University of Toronto program, 215 (60%) completed questionnaires at entry and exit. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Changes in attitudes and plans during the residency program as ascertained from responses to entry and exit questionnaires. RESULTS: Analysis was based on 215 paired questionnaires. Women residents had more interest in obstetric practice at entry: 58% of women, but only 31% of men were interested. At graduation, fewer women (49%) and men (22%) were interested in practising obstetrics. The intent to undertake rural practice was strongly associated with the intent to practise obstetrics. By graduation, residents perceived lifestyle factors and compensation as very important negative factors in relation to obstetric practice. Initial interest and the eventual decision to practise obstetrics were strongly associated. CONCLUSIONS: Intent to practise obstetrics after graduation was most closely linked to being a woman, intending to practise in a rural area, and having an interest in obstetrics prior to residency. Building on the interest in obstetrics that residents already have could be a better strategy for producing more physicians willing to practise obstetrics than trying to change the minds of those uninterested in such practice.  (+info)

(7/1632) The impact of alternative cost recovery schemes on access and equity in Niger.

The authors examine accessibility and the sustainability of quality health care in a rural setting under two alternative cost recovery methods, a fee-for-service method and a type of social financing (risk-sharing) strategy based on an annual tax+fee-for-service. Both methods were accompanied by similar interventions aimed at improving the quality of primary health services. Based on pilot tests of cost recovery in the non-hospital sector in Niger, the article presents results from baseline and final survey data, as well as from facility utilization, cost, and revenue data collected in two test districts and a control district. Cost recovery accompanied by quality improvements increases equity and access to health care and the type of cost recovery method used can make a difference. In Niger, higher access for women, children, and the poor resulted from the tax+fee method, than from the pure fee-for-service method. Moreover, revenue generation per capita under the tax+fee method was two times higher than under the fee-for-service method, suggesting that the prospects of sustainability were better under the social financing strategy. However, sustainability under cost recovery and improved quality depends as much on policy measures aimed at cost containment, particularly for drugs, as on specific cost recovery methods.  (+info)

(8/1632) Factors affecting acceptance of immunization among children in rural Bangladesh.

This paper uses the Bangladesh Fertility Survey 1989 data to identify the factors affecting acceptance of immunization among children in rural Bangladesh. Acceptance of DPT, measles and BCG vaccinations were the dependent variables. The independent variables included proximity to health facilities, frequency of visit by health worker, respondent's mobility, media exposure, education, age, economic status of household, region of residence, and gender of child. Logistic regression analysis was performed to assess the net effects of the variables in addition to univariate analysis. Among the independent variables, proximity to health facility, frequency of health worker's visit, mother's mobility, education, age, gender of child, ownership of radio, economic condition of household, and region of residence showed statistically significant association with acceptance of immunization. The effect of frequency of health worker's visit was dependent on region of residence, possession of radio, and mother's education. The effect of mother's ability to visit health centre alone was also dependent on ownership of radio, economic condition of household, and mother's education.  (+info)