Evaluation of the Norwegian campaign against the illegal spirits trade.
In 1993, a 21m NOK (3m US$) national campaign against trade with illegal spirits (homebrewed or smuggled) was launched in Norway. This article reports results of its evaluation study. Surveys covering the age range 16-80 were carried out just before the campaign started and 1 year later. Half of those responding at baseline as well as a new sample were surveyed after 1 year. While at baseline 48% reported to have drunk and 16% to have bought illegal spirits during the last 12 months, the corresponding figures after 1 year were 42 and 14%. Significant associations between being exposed to the campaign and reduced use and buying of illegal spirits were found. Further, use and buying of illegal spirits at baseline, and stopping to use and buy illegal spirits from baseline to follow-up were analyzed in bivariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses. In the multivariate prediction of stopping to use illegal spirits, only behavioral norms and significant others' opinions (both measured at baseline) obtained significance. (+info)
International developments in abortion law from 1988 to 1998.
OBJECTIVES: In 2 successive decades since 1967, legal accommodation of abortion has grown in many countries. The objective of this study was to assess whether liberalizing trends have been maintained in the last decade and whether increased protection of women's human rights has influenced legal reform. METHODS: A worldwide review was conducted of legislation and judicial rulings affecting abortion, and legal reforms were measured against governmental commitments made under international human rights treaties and at United Nations conferences. RESULTS: Since 1987, 26 jurisdictions have extended grounds for lawful abortion, and 4 countries have restricted grounds. Additional limits on access to legal abortion services include restrictions on funding of services, mandatory counseling and reflection delay requirements, third-party authorizations, and blockades of abortion clinics. CONCLUSIONS: Progressive liberalization has moved abortion laws from a focus on punishment toward concern with women's health and welfare and with their human rights. However, widespread maternal mortality and morbidity show that reform must be accompanied by accessible abortion services and improved contraceptive care and information. (+info)
Darryl, a cartoon-based measure of cardinal posttraumatic stress symptoms in school-age children.
OBJECTIVES: This report examines the reliability and validity of Darryl, a cartoon-based measure of the cardinal symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). METHODS: We measured exposure to community violence through the reports of children and their parents and then administered Darryl to a sample of 110 children aged 7 to 9 residing in urban neighborhoods with high crime rates. RESULTS: Darryl's reliability is excellent overall and is acceptable for the reexperiencing, avoidance, and arousal subscales, considered separately. Child reports of exposure to community violence were significantly associated with child reports of PTSD symptoms. CONCLUSIONS: Darryl possesses acceptable psychometric properties in a sample of children with frequent exposure to community violence. (+info)
Evaluating the impact of a street barrier on urban crime.
OBJECTIVES: Violence is a major urban public health problem in the United States. The impact of a physical barrier placed across a street in a public housing project to prevent street violence and drug activity was evaluated. METHODS: Hartford Police Department data on violent and drug related crime incidence within the housing project containing the barrier were analyzed by use of a computerized geographic information system. RESULTS: Violent crime decreased 33% on the intervention street during the 15 month period after erection of the barrier, compared with the 15 month period before erection of the barrier, but there was no change in drug related crime. On adjoining streets and surrounding blocks, violent crime decreased 30%-50% but drug related crimes roughly doubled. A non-adjacent area of the housing project and the entire city experienced 26% and 15% decreases in violent crimes, and 414% and 25% increases in drug crimes, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The barrier decreased violent crime but displaced drug crimes to surrounding areas of the housing project. These results have important implications for other cities that have erected or are considering erecting similar barriers. (+info)
Rapid gas chromatographic analysis of drugs of forensic interest.
High-speed gas chromatographic (GC) screening for drugs of forensic relevance is performed using a commercial Flash GC instrument in which the chromatographic column is resistively heated at rates of up to 30 degrees C/s. Temperature programming conditions are varied in an experiment designed to evaluate trade-offs between resolution and analysis time for a mixture of 19 drugs of abuse. All 19 components can be separated with excellent resolution in 90 s. Specific analytes can be analyzed even faster; for example, amphetamine analysis is completed in less than 20 s. Case studies of confiscated street drugs containing amphetamine, cocaine, and heroin are analyzed to evaluate the retention time repeatability. Ten replicate injections over a 2-day period for 3 different drug samples achieved retention time relative standard deviations in the range of 0.48 to 0.81%. (+info)
Outcome of long stay psychiatric patients resettled in the community: prospective cohort study.
OBJECTIVE: To examine the outcome of a population of long stay psychiatric patients resettled in the community. DESIGN: Prospective study with 5 year follow up. SETTING: Over 140 residential settings in north London. SUBJECTS: 670 long stay patients from two London hospitals (Friern and Claybury) discharged to the community from 1985 to 1993. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Continuity and quality of residential care, readmission to hospital, mortality, crime, and vagrancy. RESULTS: Of the 523 patients who survived the 5 year follow up period, 469 (89.6%) were living in the community by the end of follow up, 310 (59.2%) in their original community placement. A third (210) of all patients were readmitted at least once. Crime and homelessness presented few problems. Standardised mortality ratios for the group were comparable with those reported for similar populations. CONCLUSIONS: When carefully planned and adequately resourced, community care for long stay psychiatric patients is beneficial to most individuals and has minimal detrimental effects on society. (+info)
A case of aldicarb poisoning: a possible murder attempt.
A couple showing signs of cholinergic crisis was admitted to the hospital. Analyses with high-performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry conducted on serum, urine, and stomach contents that were collected few hours after first symptoms showed the presence of aldicarb, which is the most potent carbamate insecticide on the market. A murder attempt was suspected because the patients showed the first signs some minutes after drinking coffee upon returning home and no commercial products containing aldicarb were found in the house. Because of the reversibility of inhibition of acetylcholinesterase, the patients recovered after treatment with atropine and toxogonin. They left the hospital after 12 days. To our knowledge, the serum concentrations of aldicarb reported in this paper are the highest reported for a nonfatal case. (+info)
Prevalence and correlates of survival sex among runaway and homeless youth.
OBJECTIVE: This study examined the prevalence and correlates of survival sex among runaway and homeless youths. METHODS: A nationally representative sample of shelter youths and a multicity sample of street youths were interviewed. RESULTS: Approximately 28% of street youths and 10% of shelter youths reported having participated in survival sex, which was associated with age, days away from home, victimization, criminal behaviors, substance use, suicide attempts, sexually transmitted disease, and pregnancy. CONCLUSIONS: Intensive and ongoing services are needed to provide resources and residential assistance to enable runaway and homeless youths to avoid survival sex, which is associated with many problem behaviors. (+info)