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    ABSTRACT: UK NHS contracts mediate the relationship between dental and medical practitioners as independent contractors, and the state which reimburses them for their services to patients. There have been successive revisions of dental and medical contracts since the 1990s alongside a change in the levels of professional dominance and accountability. Unintended consequences of the 2006 dental contract have led to plans for further reform. We set out to identify the factors which facilitate and hinder the use of contracts in this area. Previous reviews of theory have been narrative, and based on macro-theory arising from various disciplines such as economics, sociology and political science. This paper presents a systematic review and aggregative synthesis of the theories of contracting for publicly funded health care. A logic map conveys internal pathways linking competition for contracts to opportunism. We identify that whilst practitioners' responses to contract rules is a result of micro-level bargaining clarifying patients' and providers' interests, responses are also influenced by relationships with commissioners and wider personal, professional and political networks.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Pervasive negative thoughts about the self are central to the experience of depression. Brain imaging studies in the general population have localised self-related cognitive processing to areas of the medial pre-frontal cortex. To use fMRI to compare the neural correlates of self-referential processing in depressed and non-depressed participants. Cross-sectional comparison of regional activation using Blood Oxygen Level Dependent (BOLD) fMRI in 13 non-medicated participants with major depressive episode and 14 comparison participants, whilst carrying out a self-referential cognitive task. Both groups showed significant activation of the dorsomedial pre-frontal cortex and posterior cingulate cortex in the 'self-referent' condition. The depressed group showed significantly greater activation in the medial superior frontal cortex during the self-referent task. No difference was observed between groups in the 'other-referent' condition. Major depressive episode is associated with specific neurofunctional changes related to self-referential processing.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2013 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Despite widespread acceptance of the ‘biopsychosocial model’, the aetiology of mental health problems has provoked debate amongst researchers and practitioners for decades. The role of psychological factors in the development of mental health problems remains particularly contentious, and to date there has not been a large enough dataset to conduct the necessary multivariate analysis of whether psychological factors influence, or are influenced by, mental health. This study reports on the first empirical, multivariate, test of the relationships between the key elements of the biospychosocial model of mental ill-health.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2013 · PLoS ONE
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