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South Med J ; 112(6): 331-337, 2019 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31158888


OBJECTIVES: Effective regionalization of acute stroke care requires assessment and coordination of limited hospital resources. We described the availability of stroke-specific hospital resources (neurology specialty physicians and neuro-intensive care unit [neuro-ICU] bed capacity) for North Carolina overall and by region and population density. We also assessed daily trends in hospital bed availability. METHODS: This statewide descriptive study was conducted with data from the State Medical Asset Resource Tracking Tool (SMARTT), a Web-based system used by North Carolina to track available medical resources within the state. The SMARTT system was queried for stroke-specific physician and bed resources at each North Carolina hospital during a 1-year period (June 2015-May 2016), including daily availability of neuro-ICU beds. We compared hospital resources by geographic region and population density (metropolitan, urban, and rural). RESULTS: Data from 108 acute care hospitals located in 75 of 100 counties in North Carolina were included in the analysis. Fifty-seven percent of hospitals had no neurology specialty physicians. Western and eastern North Carolina had the lowest prevalence of these physicians. Most hospitals (88%) had general ICUs, whereas only 17 hospitals (16%) had neuro-ICUs. Neuro-ICUs were concentrated in metropolitan areas and in central North Carolina. On average, there were 276 general ICU and 27 neuro-ICU beds available statewide each day. Daily neuro-ICU bed availability was lowest in eastern and southeastern regions and during the week compared with weekends. CONCLUSIONS: In North Carolina, stroke-specific hospital subspecialists and resources are not distributed evenly across the state. Daily bed availability, particularly in neuro-ICUs, is lacking in rural areas and noncentral regions and appears to decrease on weekdays. Regionalization of stroke care needs to consider the geographic distribution and daily variability of hospital resources.

Acesso aos Serviços de Saúde , Número de Leitos em Hospital/estatística & dados numéricos , Neurologistas/provisão & distribução , Acidente Vascular Cerebral/terapia , Humanos , Unidades de Terapia Intensiva/provisão & distribução , North Carolina/epidemiologia , Acidente Vascular Cerebral/epidemiologia
Sci Total Environ ; 670: 717-731, 2019 Jun 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30909048


Achieving sufficient, safe, continuously-available drinking water services in rural areas is a challenge, in high- and especially low-and middle-income countries. External support programs (ESPs) - which may include administrative, financial, and technical assistance - have been hypothesized to contribute to sustainable rural water services. While there are many descriptions of ESPs, a standard terminology and typology of ESP activities does not exist and the effect of ESP activities on system sustainability remains inadequately characterized. We conducted a systematic review of ESPs for rural drinking water systems to identify ESP terminology and describe ESP activities. Findings from 218 publications from low-, middle-, and high-income countries were analyzed. ESP terms were used inconsistently between regions and income classifications. There were few studies describing ESP activities related to mechanized piped water systems. Few studies quantitatively assess the effect of ESPs. Those that did found positive associations with functionality, household satisfaction, household participation, and financial stability. This review is the first comprehensive evaluation of the ESP literature and we derive a definition of external support programs and typology of ESP activities from the descriptions of ESPs. A common understanding of ESPs facilitates discussion and knowledge transfer between stakeholders. Consistent terminology creates a foundation for adapting ESPs to water services in community institutions and for mechanized piped water systems.

PLoS One ; 10(10): e0140899, 2015.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26505745


BACKGROUND: Packaged water products provide an increasingly important source of water for consumption. However, recent studies raise concerns over their safety. OBJECTIVES: To assess the microbial safety of packaged water, examine differences between regions, country incomes, packaged water types, and compare packaged water with other water sources. METHODS: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis. Articles published in English, French, Portuguese, Spanish and Turkish, with no date restrictions were identified from online databases and two previous reviews. Studies published before April 2014 that assessed packaged water for the presence of Escherichia coli, thermotolerant or total coliforms were included provided they tested at least ten samples or brands. RESULTS: A total of 170 studies were included in the review. The majority of studies did not detect fecal indicator bacteria in packaged water (78/141). Compared to packaged water from upper-middle and high-income countries, packaged water from low and lower-middle-income countries was 4.6 (95% CI: 2.6-8.1) and 13.6 (95% CI: 6.9-26.7) times more likely to contain fecal indicator bacteria and total coliforms, respectively. Compared to all other packaged water types, water from small bottles was less likely to be contaminated with fecal indicator bacteria (OR = 0.32, 95%CI: 0.17-0.58) and total coliforms (OR = 0.10, 95%CI: 0.05, 0.22). Packaged water was less likely to contain fecal indicator bacteria (OR = 0.35, 95%CI: 0.20, 0.62) compared to other water sources used for consumption. CONCLUSIONS: Policymakers and regulators should recognize the potential benefits of packaged water in providing safer water for consumption at and away from home, especially for those who are otherwise unlikely to gain access to a reliable, safe water supply in the near future. To improve the quality of packaged water products they should be integrated into regulatory and monitoring frameworks.

Água Potável/microbiologia , Fezes/microbiologia , Microbiologia da Água , Escherichia coli/isolamento & purificação , Escherichia coli/patogenicidade , Humanos , Embalagem de Produtos , Qualidade da Água