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1.  Quality of Antenatal Care and Obstetrical Coverage in Rural Burkina Faso 
Improving maternal health is one of the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations. Despite the efforts to promote maternal and neonatal care to achieve this goal, the use of delivery care remains below expectations in Burkina Faso. This situation raises the question of the quality of care offered in maternity wards. The aim of this study was to identify primary healthcare facility and antenatal care characteristics predictive of an assisted delivery in rural Burkina Faso. A cross-sectional study was carried out in Gnagna province (North-East Burkina Faso) in November 2003. The operational capacities of health facilities were assessed, and a non-participating observation of the antenatal care (ANC) procedure was undertaken to evaluate their quality. Scores were established to summarize the information gathered. The rate of professional childbirth (obstetrical coverage) was derived from the number of childbirths registered in the health facility compared to the size of the population. The established scores were related to the obstetrical coverage using non-parametric tests (Kendall). In total, 17 health facilities were visited, and 81 antenatal consultations were observed. Insufficiencies were observed at all steps of ANC (mean total score for the quality of ANC=10.3±3.0, ranging from 6 to 16, out of a maximum of 20). Health facilities are poorly equipped, and the availability of qualified staff remained low (mean total score for the provision of care was 22.9±4.2, ranging from 14 to 33). However, these scores were not significantly related to the rate of professional childbirth (tau Kendall=0.27: p=0.14 and 0.01, p=0.93 respectively). The ability of the primary health centres to provide good antenatal care remains low in rural Burkina Faso. The key factors involved in the limited use of professional childbirth relating to maternal health services may be the quality of ANC.
PMCID: PMC2975848  PMID: 20214088
Antenatal care; Cross-sectional studies; Deliveries; Developing countries; Maternal health services; Obstetric care; Quality of care; Burkina Faso; Africa
2.  Delays in orthopaedic trauma treatment: setting standards for the time interval between admission and operation. 
Delay in operating on trauma patients leads to increased morbidity, mortality, length of hospital stay and overall cost. The urgency of operative intervention depends on the injury sustained. There are no published guidelines on what constitutes a reasonable delay between admission and operation. As part of the clinical governance in our unit, an audit was undertaken to examine the structure and process of trauma operating. Patients were allocated to groups defined by the Bath Orthopaedic Department, according to urgency of need for surgery. Group A: patients (for example, open fractures and dislocations) should have definitive treatment within 6 h of admission. Group B: patients (for example, hip fractures, long bone injuries and ankle fractures) should have operations on the day that they are presented to the consultant trauma meeting, or on the day that they are declared fit/ready for theatre. Group C: patients (for example, tendon injuries, simple hand fractures) should have operations within 5 days of presentation to the trauma meeting. Over 3 months, there were 401 acute orthopaedic admissions requiring surgery (61 group A, 277 group B, 63 group C). 78% of group A patients, 58% of group B patients and 86% of group C patients were operated on within the target times. In total, 137 out of 401 operations (34%) missed the targets set. 119 of these (87%) were delayed due to lack of available operating time. This was despite the fact that 59 operations (15% of total) were done on lists normally used for elective operating. Most of the other delays were due to the need for an appropriately experienced surgeon to be available. If these targets are to be achieved for the majority of patients, the trauma theatre must become more efficient, or more flexible time must be made available during evenings or weekends to clear the backlog of trauma operations.
PMCID: PMC2503628  PMID: 11041030
3.  Invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b disease in elderly nursing home residents: two related cases. 
Emerging Infectious Diseases  1997;3(2):179-182.
We investigated two fatal cases of invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) infection in a community nursing home in western Sydney, Australia. Two elderly women had lived in the same room, and the onset of their illness was 5 days apart. Hib isolates from blood cultures showed identical profiles by pulsed field gel electrophoresis. These findings suggest that Hib infection was transmitted within this nursing home. Serious Hib disease may be underrecognized in this setting. Continued surveillance and serotyping of invasive H. influenzae disease is essential for identifying groups at increasing risk that may benefit from immunization against Hib.
PMCID: PMC2627616  PMID: 9204300
4.  Legionellosis linked with a hotel car park--how many were infected? 
Epidemiology and Infection  1996;116(2):185-192.
An outbreak of legionellosis associated with a hotel in Sydney, Australia, and the subsequent epidemiological and environmental investigations are described. Four cases of Legionnaires' disease were notified to the Public Health Unit. A cross-sectional study of 184 people who attended a seminar at the hotel was carried out. Serological and questionnaire data were obtained for 152 (83%) of these. Twenty-eight (18%) respondents reported symptoms compatible with legionellosis. Thirty-three subjects (22%) had indirect fluorescent antibody (IFA) titres to Legionella pneumophila serogroup 1 (Lp-1) of 128 or higher. The only site which those with symptoms of legionellosis and IFA titre > or = 128 were more likely to have visited than controls was the hotel car park (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 14.7, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.8-123.1). Those with symptoms compatible with legionellosis, but whose IFA titres were < 128 were also more likely to have visited the hotel car park (adjusted OR 4.4, 95% CI: 1.5-12.9). Seroprevalence of Lp-1 antibodies was higher in those who attended the seminar than in a population sample of similar age. Findings suggested that the 4 cases represented a small fraction of all those infected, and highlighted difficulties in defining illness caused by Lp-1 and in interpreting serology.
PMCID: PMC2271622  PMID: 8620910
5.  Ethics in preventive medicine. 
Journal of Medical Ethics  1991;17(1):46.
PMCID: PMC1375974  PMID: 1867695

Results 1-5 (5)