Australian Catholic University
  • Melbourne, Australia
Recent publications
This paper explores the possibility of using diachronic case study comparisons to shed light on continuity and change in policy interventions to manage plant closures. It compares the early results of a survey of workers retrenched in the 2017 closure of Australia’s passenger vehicle manufacturing industry with the results of a similar survey of workers who lost their jobs in the 2005 closure of Mitsubishi’s Adelaide engine-casting and components plant. Despite the 12 years of accumulated expertise in plant closure and structural adjustment management, this comparison shows remarkable similarities in the profile of the cohort of retrenched workers and remarkable similarities in their employment outcomes. The discussion reflects on conditions that produce continuity and change.
This report describes epidemiology, burden, and treatment of osteoporosis in each of the 27 countries of the European Union plus Switzerland and the UK (EU 27+2). Introduction The aim of this report was to characterize the burden of osteoporosis in each of the countries of the European Union plus Switzerland and the UK in 2019 and beyond. Methods The data on fracture incidence and costs of fractures in the EU27+2 was taken from a concurrent publication in this journal (SCOPE 2021: a new scorecard for osteoporosis in Europe) and country-specific information extracted. The information extracted covered four domains: burden of osteoporosis and fractures; policy framework; service provision; and service uptake. Results The clinical and economic burden of osteoporotic fractures in 2019 is given for each of the 27 countries of the EU plus Switzerland and the UK. Each domain was ranked and the country performance set against the scorecard for all nations studied. Data were also compared with the first SCOPE undertaken in 2010. Fifteen of the 16 score card metrics on healthcare provision were used in the two surveys. Scores had improved or markedly improved in 15 countries, remained constant in 8 countries and worsened in 3 countries. The average treatment gap increased from 55% in 2010 to 71% in 2019. Overall, 10.6 million women who were eligible for treatment were untreated in 2010. In 2019, this number had risen to 14.0 million. Conclusions In spite of the high cost of osteoporosis, a substantial treatment gap and projected increase of the economic burden driven by aging populations, the use of pharmacological prevention of osteoporosis has decreased in recent years, suggesting that a change in healthcare policy concerning the disease is warranted.
A prospective hospital-based survey in representative regions of Saudi Arabia determined the incidence of fractures at the hip. The hip fracture rates were used to create a FRAX® model to facilitate fracture risk assessment in Saudi Arabia. Objective This paper describes the incidence of hip fracture in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that was used to characterize the current and future burden of hip fracture, to develop a country-specific FRAX® tool for fracture prediction and to compare fracture probabilities with neighbouring countries. Methods During a 2-year (2017/2018) prospective survey in 15 hospitals with a defined catchment population, hip fractures in Saudi citizens were prospectively identified from hospital registers. The number of hip fractures and future burden was determined from national demography. Age- and sex-specific incidence of hip fracture and national mortality rates were incorporated into a FRAX model for Saudi Arabia. Fracture probabilities were compared with those from Kuwait and Abu Dhabi. Results The incidence of hip fracture applied nationally suggested that the estimated number of hip fractures nationwide in persons over the age of 50 years for 2015 was 2,949 and is predicted to increase nearly sevenfold to 20,328 in 2050. Hip fracture rates were comparable with estimates from Abu Dhabi and Kuwait. By contrast, probabilities of a major osteoporotic fracture or hip fracture from the age of 70 years were much lower than those seen in Abu Dhabi and Kuwait due to higher mortality estimates for Saudi Arabia. Conclusion A country-specific FRAX tool for fracture prediction has been developed for Saudi Arabia which is expected to help guide decisions about treatment.
The National Osteoporosis Guideline Group (NOGG) has revised the UK guideline for the assessment and management of osteoporosis and the prevention of fragility fractures in postmenopausal women, and men age 50 years and older. Accredited by NICE, this guideline is relevant for all healthcare professionals involved in osteoporosis management. Introduction The UK National Osteoporosis Guideline Group (NOGG) first produced a guideline on the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in 2008, with updates in 2013 and 2017. This paper presents a major update of the guideline, the scope of which is to review the assessment and management of osteoporosis and the prevention of fragility fractures in postmenopausal women, and men age 50 years and older. Methods Where available, systematic reviews, meta-analyses and randomised controlled trials were used to provide the evidence base. Conclusions and recommendations were systematically graded according to the strength of the available evidence. Results Review of the evidence and recommendations are provided for the diagnosis of osteoporosis, fracture-risk assessment and intervention thresholds, management of vertebral fractures, non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatments, including duration and monitoring of anti-resorptive therapy, glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis, and models of care for fracture prevention. Recommendations are made for training; service leads and commissioners of healthcare; and for review criteria for audit and quality improvement. Conclusion The guideline, which has received accreditation from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE), provides a comprehensive overview of the assessment and management of osteoporosis for all healthcare professionals involved in its management. This position paper has been endorsed by the International Osteoporosis Foundation and by the European Society for the Clinical and Economic Aspects of Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases.
Background Many elite athletes have suboptimal sleep duration and efficiency, potentially due to factors that may impact sleep onset and offset times. Variability in sleep onset and offset may negatively influence sleep. The sleep regularity index (SRI) is a novel metric for sleep regularity, however there are no published descriptions of SRI in elite athletes. Further, contributors to sleep efficiency and duration in elite athletes using objective measures have not been explored. Methods Sleep was monitored over a minimum of seven consecutive days (7 to 43)—in 203 elite team sport athletes (age range = 19–36 years; female, n = 79; male, n = 124, total sleep nights = 1975) using activity monitoring and sleep diaries. The sleep regularity index (SRI) was calculated to reflect the night-to-night shifts in sleep by accounting for changes in sleep onset and sleep offset. Sleep characteristics were compared between regular and irregular sleepers and important contributors to sleep efficiency and total sleep time were assessed using multiple linear regression models. Results The median sleep regularity index and interquartile range were 85.1 (81.4 to 88.8). When compared to irregular sleepers, regular sleepers demonstrated (1) significantly greater sleep efficiency (p = 0.006; 0.31 medium effect size [ES]), (2) significantly less variability in total sleep time (− p ≤ 0.001; − 0.69, large ES) and sleep efficiency (− 0.34, small ES), (3) similar total sleep time and (4) significantly less variation in sleep onset (p ≤ 0.001; − 0.73, large ES) and offset (p ≤ 0.001; − 0.74, large ES) times. Sleep characteristics explained 73% and 22% of the variance in total sleep time and sleep efficiency, respectively. The most important contributor to total sleep time was a later sleep offset time, while the most important contributors to sleep efficiency were an earlier bedtime and less variable sleep onset times. Conclusions Bedtime and a consistent sleep onset time are important factors associated with sleep efficiency in athletes, while sleep offset is an important factor for total sleep time. Coaches and staff can assist their athletes by providing training schedules that allow for both regularity and sufficiency of time in bed where possible.
This study includes 1005 men from the Gothenburg part of the Osteoporotic Fracture in Men Study (MrOS). Included are 66 men with anemia (hemoglobin < 130 g/L). The follow-up time was up to 16 years, and the main results are that anemia is associated with all fractures and non-vertebral osteoporotic fractures. Introduction Anemia and osteoporotic fractures are conditions that are associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Clinical studies have suggested that anemia can be used as a predictor of future osteoporotic fractures. Method Men from the Osteoporotic Fractures in Men Study (MrOS) Sweden, Gothenburg, with available hemoglobin (Hb) values ( n = 1005, median age 75.3 years (SD 3.2)), were included in the current analyses. Of these, 66 suffered from anemia, defined as Hb < 130 g/L. Median follow-up time for fracture was 10.1 years and the longest follow-up time was 16.1 years. Results Men with anemia had, at baseline, experienced more falls and had a higher prevalence of diabetes, cancer, prostate cancer, hypertension, and stroke. Anemia was not statistically significantly associated with bone mineral density (BMD). Men with anemia had higher serum levels of fibroblast growth factor 23 (iFGF23) ( p < 0.001) and phosphate ( p = 0.001) and lower serum levels of testosterone ( p < 0.001) and estradiol ( p < 0.001). Moreover, men with anemia had an increased risk of any fracture (hazard ratio (HR) 1.97, 95% CI 1.28–3.02) and non-vertebral osteoporotic fracture (HR 2.15, 95% CI 1.18–3.93), after adjustment for age and total hip BMD, in 10 years. The risk for any fracture was increased in 10 and 16 years independently of falls, comorbidities, inflammation, and sex hormones. The age-adjusted risk of hip fracture was increased in men with anemia (HR 2.32, 95% CI 1.06–5.12), in 10 years, although this was no longer statistically significant after further adjustment for total hip BMD. Conclusions Anemia is associated with an increased risk for any fracture and non-vertebral osteoporotic fracture in elderly men with a long follow-up time. The cause is probably multifactorial and our results support that anemia can be used as a predictor for future fracture.
The IOF Epidemiology and Quality of Life Working Group has reviewed the potential role of population screening for high hip fracture risk against well-established criteria. The report concludes that such an approach should strongly be considered in many health care systems to reduce the burden of hip fractures. Introduction The burden of long-term osteoporosis management falls on primary care in most healthcare systems. However, a wide and stable treatment gap exists in many such settings; most of which appears to be secondary to a lack of awareness of fracture risk. Screening is a public health measure for the purpose of identifying individuals who are likely to benefit from further investigations and/or treatment to reduce the risk of a disease or its complications. The purpose of this report was to review the evidence for a potential screening programme to identify postmenopausal women at increased risk of hip fracture. Methods The approach took well-established criteria for the development of a screening program, adapted by the UK National Screening Committee, and sought the opinion of 20 members of the International Osteoporosis Foundation’s Working Group on Epidemiology and Quality of Life as to whether each criterion was met (yes, partial or no). For each criterion, the evidence base was then reviewed and summarized. Results and Conclusion The report concludes that evidence supports the proposal that screening for high fracture risk in primary care should strongly be considered for incorporation into many health care systems to reduce the burden of fractures, particularly hip fractures. The key remaining hurdles to overcome are engagement with primary care healthcare professionals, and the implementation of systems that facilitate and maintain the screening program.
Background The etiology of hamstring strain injury (HSI) in American football is multi-factorial and understanding these risk factors is paramount to developing predictive models and guiding prevention and rehabilitation strategies. Many player-games are lost due to the lack of a clear understanding of risk factors and the absence of effective methods to minimize re-injury. This paper describes the protocol that will be followed to develop the HAMstring InjuRy (HAMIR) index risk prediction models for HSI and re-injury based on morphological, architectural, biomechanical and clinical factors in National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I collegiate football players. Methods A 3-year, prospective study will be conducted involving collegiate football student-athletes at four institutions. Enrolled participants will complete preseason assessments of eccentric hamstring strength, on-field sprinting biomechanics and muscle–tendon volumes using magnetic-resonance imaging (MRI). Athletic trainers will monitor injuries and exposure for the duration of the study. Participants who sustain an HSI will undergo a clinical assessment at the time of injury along with MRI examinations. Following completion of structured rehabilitation and return to unrestricted sport participation, clinical assessments, MRI examinations and sprinting biomechanics will be repeated. Injury recurrence will be monitored through a 6-month follow-up period. HAMIR index prediction models for index HSI injury and re-injury will be constructed. Discussion The most appropriate strategies for reducing risk of HSI are likely multi-factorial and depend on risk factors unique to each athlete. This study will be the largest-of-its-kind (1200 player-years) to gather detailed information on index and recurrent HSI, and will be the first study to simultaneously investigate the effect of morphological, biomechanical and clinical variables on risk of HSI in collegiate football athletes. The quantitative HAMIR index will be formulated to identify an athlete’s propensity for HSI, and more importantly, identify targets for injury mitigation, thereby reducing the global burden of HSI in high-level American football players. Trial Registration The trial is prospectively registered on (NCT05343052; April 22, 2022).
Background Chronically medically ill patients often need clinical assistance with symptom management, as well as self-care interventions that can help to reduce the impact of bothersome symptoms. Experienced clinicians can help to guide the development of more effective self-care interventions. Objective To create a consensus-based list of common bothersome symptoms of chronic conditions and of self-care management behaviors recommended to patients by clinicians to reduce the impact of these symptoms. Methods A two-round Delphi study was performed among an international panel of 47 clinicians using online surveys to identify common and bothersome symptoms and related self-care management behaviors recommended to patients with heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, type 2 diabetes, or arthritis. Results A total of 30 common bothersome symptoms and 158 self-care management behaviors across the five conditions were listed. Each chronic condition has its own bothersome symptoms and self-care management behaviors. Consensus was reached on the vast majority of recommended behaviors. Conclusions The list of common bothersome symptoms and self-care management behaviors reflect consensus across four countries on many points but also disagreement on others, and a few recommendations are inconsistent with current guidelines. Efforts to encourage clinicians to recommend effective self-care management behaviors may reduce symptom impact in chronically ill patient populations.
Based on Hunt and Vitell’s theory of ethics, using three vignettes, we tested intrinsic and extrinsic religiosities and five ethical principles (justice, deontology, relativism, egoism, and utilitarianism) in the ethical decision-making process of 232 Indian business professionals. Intrinsic religiosity is positively related to ethical recognition and intent and extrinsic religiosity is negatively related to ethical intent in the vignette concerning duty of care. Although intrinsic religiosity predicted justice, deontology and relativism in three vignettes, it is also positively related to utilitarianism in one vignette. Egoism is not related to intrinsic and extrinsic religiosities. Extrinsic religiosity is negatively related to justice (one vignette), deontology (two vignettes), relativism (two vignettes) and utilitarianism (one vignette). Moreover, the intrinsic religiosity-ethical recognition and extrinsic religiosity-ethical intent relationships are varyingly mediated by the ethical principles. We extend Hunt and Vitell’s theory in a multi-faith context and our findings have implications for Indian business leaders and employees.
There is considerable variability in neurocognitive functioning within schizophrenia-spectrum disorders, and neurocognitive performance ranges from severe global impairment to normative performance. Few investigations of neurocognitive clusters have considered the degree to which deterioration relative to premorbid neurocognitive abilities is related to key illness characteristics. Moreover, while neurocognition and community functioning are strongly related, understanding of the sources of variability in the association between these two domains is also limited; it is unknown what proportion of participants would over-perform or under-perform the level of functioning expected based on current neurocognitive performance vs. lifelong attainment. This study examined data from 954 outpatients with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders across three previous studies. Neurocognition, community functioning, and symptoms were assessed. Neurocognitive subgroups were created based on current neurocognition, estimated premorbid IQ, and degree of deterioration from premorbid using z-score cut-offs; functional subgroups were created with cluster analysis based on the Specific Level of Functioning Scale and current neurocognition. The sample was neurocognitively heterogeneous; 65% displayed current neurocognitive impairment and 84% experienced some level of deterioration. Thirty percent of our sample was relatively higher functioning despite significant neurocognitive impairment. Individuals with better community functioning, regardless of neurocognitive performance, had lower symptom severity compared to those with worse functioning. These results highlight the variability in neurocognition and its role in functioning. Understanding individual differences in neurocognitive and functional profiles and the interaction between prior and current cognitive functioning can guide individualized treatment and selection of participants for clinical treatment studies.
Background Acute kidney injury (AKI) is accompanied by dysregulation of cellular energy metabolism and accumulation of intracellular lipid. Phosphorylation of acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) by AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) inhibits fatty acid synthesis and promotes fatty acid oxidation (FAO), vital for kidney tubular epithelial cells (TECs). The diabetes drug metformin is protective in models of AKI; however, it is not known whether ACC phosphorylation plays a role. Methods Cisplatin-induced AKI (CI-AKI) was established in ACC1/2 double knock-in (ACC1/2DKI) mice, harbouring mutations that disrupt fatty acid metabolism, and the role of metformin was studied in this model. Outcomes measured included serum biochemistry, expression of kidney injury markers such as neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), and metabolomic analysis. Findings ACC1/2DKI mice demonstrated more severe CI-AKI than wild type (WT), as assessed by serum urea and creatinine, histological injury, and expression of NGAL and interleukin-6. Metformin protected against AKI in WT mice, shown by reduced NGAL, but this effect was absent in ACC1/2DKI mice. In cultured TECs exposed to cisplatin, metformin reduced expression of cleaved caspase-3, however, this effect was diminished in ACC1/2DKI TECs. Analysis of kidney polar metabolites found numerous differences between metformin-treated CI-AKI in ACC1/2DKI and WT mice, involving multiple pathways of amino acid, nucleoside, and energy metabolism. Interpretation Severity of CI-AKI is exacerbated by the inability to regulate metabolism via phosphorylation of ACC. ACC phosphorylation contributes to the protective effect of metformin against AKI, influencing multiple mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of kidney injury.
Background A high proportion of adolescents worldwide are not doing enough physical activity for health benefits. Replacing short motorised trips with walking or cycling has the potential to increase physical activity at the population level. This study aimed to estimate the proportion of short distance motorised trips that could be replaced with walking or cycling, and the potential physical activity gains by sociodemographic and trip characteristics. Methods Data were from a subsample of the NEighbourhood Activity in Youth (NEArbY) study conducted among adolescents in Melbourne. A total of 217 adolescents with at least one motorised trip completed a survey and wore a Global Positioning Systems (GPS) device for eight consecutive days. Classification of travel modes were based on speed. GPS data points were geocoded in ArcGIS. Motorised trips within walkable (1.3 km) and cyclable (4.2 km) distances were identified (threshold based on 80 th percentile of walking and cycling trip distances among Victorian adolescents), and the additional physical activity minutes that could be accrued by replacing walkable or cyclable motorised trip to active trips were quantified. Multilevel linear regression was used to assess differences in physical activity minutes gain by sociodemographic and trip characteristics. Results A total of 4,116 motorised trips were made. Of these, 17% were walkable and 61% were cyclable. Replacing motorised trips by walking and cycling resulted in estimated gains of six minutes and 15 min of physical activity per day, respectively. Conclusion The sizable proportion of replaceable trips and potential physical activity gains from this shift calls for attention to improve safe and connected infrastructure to support active travel.
Learning with technology is increasingly understood to be a social process involving unique and telling discourses. An emerging research agenda has resulted, investigating the links between ‘talk’ and student technological practices but is yet to include home-education. Preliminary evidence exists of a relationship between particular types of ‘talk’ and success with particular online activities, namely online search. This may prove especially pertinent to home-educators who report that their most prolific online activities are those reliant upon search engines like Google. This paper presents select findings from a study into online search and the associated discursive practices among early primary students and their parent-educators in Australia. Data from observations, tests and interviews with five home-educating families were analysed recursively using a system guided by Fairclough’s Critical Discourse Analysis. Specifically, this paper seeks to investigate: which discursive practices are privileged in these sites during online search; the extent to which these practices contribute to relations of power and the extent to which these practices are found alongside effective online search. Findings revealed a prevalence of inequitable discursive practices, those that either inhibited the equal conversational power of speakers or which naturalised inequitable power relations more generally. These discursive practices were found alongside ineffective online searches. Notwithstanding, participants continued to speak positively about search engines and their educational power. This rhetoric-reality gap is theorized in the paper as the work of dominant ideologies surrounding technology in education. Findings can assist the growing number of home-educators and their students to use online search more effectively. Insights regarding links between discursive practice and search practice may also help ensure that discourse helps to maximise the educational benefits associated with online search.
Objective: To describe practice patterns in the use of instrumental swallowing assessment (ISA) for older adults in residential aged care homes (RACHs). Methods: A retrospective audit of medical records of residents living in RACHs in Melbourne, Australia to extract data on speech-language pathologist (SLP) involvement, indications for ISA and ISA practice patterns. Results: Medical files of 323 residents across four Melbourne facilities were reviewed. 36% (n = 115) of residents were referred to SLP for swallowing assessment. Referral to SLP was related to length of stay (U = 7393.00, p < 0.001), dementia status (χ2 [1] = 7.06, p = 0.008), texture modification (χ2 [1] = 93.34, p < 0.001) and an existing dysphagia diagnosis (χ2 [1] = 112.89, p < 0.001). There were no referrals for ISA and no instances of ISA being used. Among 115 residents who were referred to SLP for swallowing assessment, there were 33 instances where ISA might be clinically relevant according to ISA indicators. Conclusions: Instrumental swallowing assessment is not being used for the management of swallowing in RACHs in Australia despite a clinical need for ISA and a potential role for ISA to improve swallowing care quality. Lack of timely ISA may fail to meet the complex health-care needs of older adults living with dysphagia in RACHs, increasing their vulnerability to complications of dysphagia and its management.
Purpose In the US, Black people diagnosed with schizophrenia experience worse psychosocial and clinical outcomes than their White counterparts. While racism-related factors contribute to these disparities, an additional understudied explanation may be that psychosocial treatments for psychotic disorders are less effective for Black than White individuals. The purpose of this study is to examine the extent to which best treatment practices for first-episode psychosis (FEP) are effective for Black and White participants. Methods We conducted a secondary data analysis of the Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenia Episode Early Treatment Program (RAISE-ETP), a two-year multisite trial that compared a coordinated specialty care intervention for FEP (NAVIGATE) to community care as usual (CC) in 34 sites across the US. Specifically, we compared interviewer-rated quality of life and symptoms, as well as self-reported mental health and stigma, between 139 Non-Latinx Black and 172 Non-Latinx White participants with FEP in NAVIGATE and CC. Results We found few differences between Black and White participants over two-year outcomes, either overall or in terms of benefit from NAVIGATE. Across both treatment conditions, Black participants improved less than White participants on positive symptoms, an effect driven primarily by suspiciousness/persecution. In NAVIGATE, self-reported mental health stigma decreased for both Black and White participants, while in CC stigma decreased for White participants but increased for Black participants. This effect was driven primarily by experienced stigma rather than self-stigma. Conclusion NAVIGATE benefits both Black and White individuals diagnosed with FEP. Mental health stigma and positive symptoms may be particularly important aspects of treatment for Black individuals diagnosed with FEP.
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Jonathon Sargeant
  • Faculty of Education & Arts
Amy McPherson
  • Faculty of Education and Arts
Deborah Harcourt
  • Faculty of Education
Michael D Fischer
  • Faculty of Business
Geraldine Naughton
  • National School of Exercise Science
Melbourne, Australia