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Pre-eclampsia could triple the risk of some forms of dementia later in life

Women who suffer pre-eclampsia during pregnancy have a higher risk of dementia in later life, a new study suggests. Pre-eclampsia is associated with an increased risk of later dementia, particularly vascular dementia, caused by reduced blood supply to the brain due to diseased blood vessels, finds a large cohort study published by The BMJ.

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Nurses “eyeballing” patients in ED is better than triage

Simply eyeballing a patient may be more effective than using a formal structured assessment (algorithm) to prioritise those who are the sickest and therefore most in need of urgent medical attention, finds research published online in “Emergency Medicine Journal”.

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New test rapidly identifies antibiotic-resistant superbugs

The availability of antimicrobials to treat infections is at the heart of modern healthcare. It enables health professionals to safely deliver interventions, such as surgery and chemotherapy, and allows patients to live longer and healthier lives. However antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is developing faster than new antimicrobials can be developed or discovered. Now researchers from the University of California Berkeley have created a simple and inexpensive new test that can diagnose patients with antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria in only a couple of minutes, an innovation which could help doctors prescribe a specific antibiotic for each infection, limiting the spread of antibiotic resistant organisms.

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Metro South Health wins a hat-trick of global hospital awards for digital health innovations

Brisbane’s Metro South Health has cemented its reputation for trailblazing digital health innovation, blitzing the field and taking out a hat trick of awards to be recognised as a global leader at the prestigious International Hospital Federation Awards.

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Doctors look after our mental health but who looks after theirs?

When medical students enter university, their mental health is no different from that of the rest of the population. Doctors learn early in their training to mask their pain, to hold the line, to come across as stoic, to turn up ready for work come what may, and never to admit to their vulnerabilities. By the end of their first year, however, it is significantly worse. Stress accumulates throughout their training and, for many, things do not improve as they progress through their careers.

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Drinking more water reduces bladder infections in women, reducing the need for antibiotics

Drinking more water each day could be the answer to reducing the risk of bladder infections among premenopausal women, according to US researchers. In a controlled trial, women who drank an additional 1.5 litres of water daily experienced 48% fewer repeat bladder infections than those who drank their usual volume of fluids.

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Burned out, but what does it all mean?

Burnout among clinicians is a troubling international trend, but the profession may be attempting to treat it without understanding it adequately, say experts calling for caution and further research. In one of two research articles published on 18 September in JAMA, researchers set out to identify the international prevalence of burnout in a systematic review, but found such substantial variation in burnout definitions, assessment methods and study quality that no conclusions could be drawn.

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Study highlights need to remain vigilant in maintaining key infection control processes

Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) can be reduced by up to 55% by systematically implementing evidence-based infection prevention and control strategies, according to a review of 144 studies published in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA). The study suggests that there is considerable room for improvement in infection prevention and control practices.

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Changing the way we communicate about patients

A 53 year old woman with right lower quadrant abdominal pain. A 36 year old acutely suicidal man off psych meds. A 21 year old opioid abuser in withdrawal. An 80 year old woman with chest pain. On a single shift, I regularly read through the “one-liners” of more than two dozen patients. To even keep track of who is who, I (along with most of my colleagues) end up remembering people by their presenting clinical symptom or main medical diagnosis. As much as we recognise this to be clinically necessary, what do we lose when we begin to think of patients in this way?

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Nursing paperwork could be slashed to improve patient care

A streamlined patient risk assessment tool has the potential to dramatically reduce the amount of paperwork for nursing staff, leaving them more time for patient care. The tool – called RAIsoft Acute Care System - is a collaboration between The University of Queensland, Scandinavian company RAIsoft and Queensland Health. It has been successfully trialled at Brisbane’s QEII Jubilee Hospital.

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