• Evidence of a Hemophilia Employment Gap: Comparing Data from CHESS US+ and the 2019 Current Population Survey

      Asghar, Sohaib; Burke, Tom; Misciattelli, Natalia; Kar, Sharmila; Morgan, George; O'Hara, Jamie (American Society of Hematology, 2020-11-05)
      INTRODUCTION Severe hemophilia A (<1% normal FVIII activity) and B (<1% normal FIX activity) are congenital bleeding disorders characterized by uncontrolled bleeding, either spontaneously or in response to trauma or surgery. Recent commentary has identified a number of patient-important and patient-relevant outcomes that have been understudied, namely the challenges faced by people living with hemophilia to participate in the labor force. The socio-economic impact of hemophilia is comparatively less well understood than clinical outcomes and therapy-related costs. Under-employment and under-utilization have long-term consequences to individuals' job prospects and psychosocial health, as well as an economic cost to the society. The objective of the analysis is to compare labor market participation, among people with severe hemophilia from the US and the general population. This analysis draws on household data derived from the 2019 Current Population Survey (CPS), and on patient-reported data from a patient-centric study conducted in 2019 of people with severe hemophilia, in the US: the 'Cost of Severe Hemophilia Across the US: A Socioeconomic Survey' (CHESS US+). METHODS A patient-centric framework informed the design of CHESS US+ a retrospective (12 months prior to study enrollment), cross-sectional dataset of adults with severe hemophilia in the US. Conducted in 2019, the study used a patient-completed questionnaire to collect data on patient-relevant clinical, economic, and humanistic outcomes. This analysis examines labor market participation (full-time, part-time, unemployed), and corresponding general population data derived from the 2019 Current Population Survey (CPS). Data on the general population were sourced from the 2019 CPS 'Employment status of the civilian noninstitutional population'. Persons 'not in the labor force' in the 2019 CPS and retired persons in CHESS US+ were not included in the analysis. We present data on the civilian labor force, in CHESS US+ and in the 2019 CPS. Results are presented as mean (standard deviation) or N (%). RESULTS Of 356 patients profiled in the CHESS US+ study, 97 (27%) had severe hemophilia B and 257 (73%) had severe hemophilia A. Mean age and weight (kg) of the cohort was 34.99 (12.15) and 85.71 (22.81), respectively. The labor force participation rates of non-retired people with severe hemophilia in CHESS US+ (N = 340) and the general population (161,458) are described in Table 1. Examining aggregate data on employment status observed a higher proportion of people with severe hemophilia in part-time employment (24.4% vs. 15.7%). Differences in the labor force participation of people living with severe hemophilia compared to the general population were most pronounced in the full-time employment rate and the unemployment rate. Compared to 80.7% of the general population (Table 1), only 53.5% of people with severe hemophilia in CHESS US+ had a full-time job. Moreover, the unemployment rate (Table 1) in the 2019 CPS compared with the rate observed in CHESS US+ (3.7% vs. 22.1%) provides a stark contrast in the employment experiences of people living with severe hemophilia relative to the general population. CONCLUSIONS This analysis of CHESS US+ illustrates the impact of severe hemophilia on labor force participation. People with severe hemophilia were more likely than the general population to be unemployed, or in part-time employment. A notable contrast was observed in the rate of full-time employment and unemployment, among the general population compared to people living with severe hemophilia. These data illustrate the need to quantify the impact of hemophilia using a holistic approach that considers the cost of involuntary illness-related part-time and unemployment. Disclosures Asghar: HCD Economics: Current Employment. Burke:HCD Economics: Current Employment; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy; University of Chester: Current Employment. Misciattelli:Freeline: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Kar:Freeline: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Morgan:HCD Economics: Current Employment; uniQure: Consultancy. O'Hara:F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy; HCD Economics: Current Employment, Current equity holder in private company.
    • Problem Joints and Their Clinical and Humanistic Burden in Children and Adults with Moderate and Severe Hemophilia a: CHESS Paediatrics and CHESS II

      McLaughlin, Paul; Hermans, Cedric; Asghar, Sohaib; Burke, Tom; Nissen, Francis; Aizenas, Martynas; Meier, Oliver; Dhillon, Harpal; O'Hara, Jamie (American Society of Hematology, 2020-11-05)
      Introduction Severe hemophilia A (SHA) is characterized by spontaneous (non-trauma related) bleeding episodes into the joint space and muscle tissue, leading to progressive joint deterioration and chronic pain. Chronic joint damage is most often associated with severe hemophilia, however more recent research has illustrated that people with moderate hemophilia A (MHA) also experience hemophilic arthropathy and functional impairment. The need to measure joint health in children as well as adults, is underscored by findings from the Joint Outcome Continuation Study, which found that FVIII prophylaxis was insufficient to protect joints from damage, from childhood through adolescence in severe HA (Warren et al., 2020). The objective of this analysis is to gain a more patient-centric understanding of the clinical, economic and humanistic burden associated with 'Problem Joints', a measure of joint morbidity developed in consultation with an expert panel to overcome limitations with existing measures, in people with MHA and SHA. Methods A descriptive cohort analysis was conducted, utilizing retrospective, cross-sectional real-world data from the 'Cost of Haemophilia in Europe: a Socioeconomic Survey' (CHESS Paeds and CHESS II), studies of adult and pediatric persons with hemophilia. The analysis population is comprised of children (17 and below) with MHA or SHA in CHESS Paeds, and adults aged 20 and over with MHA or SHA in CHESS II. To account for the possibility that persons aged 18 or 19 in CHESS II may have participated in CHESS Paeds, these individuals were excluded from the analysis. Physician-reported clinical outcome data and patient/caregiver-reported quality of life were analyzed. A problem joint (PJ) is defined as having chronic joint pain and/or limited range of movement due to compromised joint integrity (i.e. chronic synovitis and/or hemophilic arthropathy). Analyses were stratified by number of PJs: none, 1 PJ, and 2+ PJs. We report retrospective data of the 12 months prior to study enrollment, on annualized bleeding rate (ABR), prevalence of target joints (TJ), as defined by the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, and EQ-5D-/5L/Y/Proxy score. Results are presented as mean (standard deviation) or N (%). Results Among 785 participants (N = 464 SHA; N = 321 MHA) in CHESS Paeds, mean age and BMI were 10.33 (4.63) and 22.50 (17.07), respectively. Of 493 participants (aged 20 and above) in CHESS II (N = 298 SHA; N = 195 MHA), the mean age and BMI were 38.61 (14.06) and 24.55 (2.92), respectively. Current inhibitor to FVIII replacement was more prevalent in children than in adults (10% vs. 5%). In CHESS II, approximately 40% of people with MHA and 49% with SHA had one or more PJs, respectively [1 PJ (23% vs. 28%); 2+ PJs (16% vs. 21%)]. In CHESS Paeds, approximately 14% of children with MHA and 18% with SHA had at least one PJ, respectively [1 PJ (9% vs. 14%); 2+ PJs (5% vs. 3%)]. TJs were less prevalent with MHA in comparison to SHA, in both adults (24% vs. 45%) and children (13% vs. 22%). Clinical burden was higher among both children and adults with PJs compared to those with no PJs. ABR correlates with the number of PJs, in those with MHA and SHA in CHESS II (Figure 1). Similarly, PJs were associated with higher ABR across MHA and SHA in CHESS Paeds (Figure 2). Hemophilia-related hospitalizations were higher in both adult and pediatric participants with PJs. In CHESS II, MHA with no PJs had fewer [0.73 (1.23)] hospitalizations compared to having those with 1 PJ [1.38 (1.11)] or 2+ PJs [1.28 (1.25)]. Similarly, children with MHA with 2+ PJs had 1.60 (1.92) hemophilia-related hospitalizations, compared to 1.38 (1.92) with 1 PJ and 0.71 (1.14) with no PJs. PJs were associated with impaired quality of life. In CHESS II, MHA and SHA EQ-5D-5L values in persons with no PJs were 0.81 (0.19) and 0.79 (0.18), respectively, compared to 0.65 (0.16) and 0.62 (0.23) with 1 PJ, and 0.65 (0.14) and 0.51 (0.33) in with 2+ PJs. A similar trend was observed in EQ-5D-Y and EQ-5D-proxy scores in CHESS Paeds. Conclusions Data from CHESS Paeds and CHESS II demonstrate an association between chronic joint damage, as measured by the 'problem joint' definition, and worsening clinical and quality of life outcomes, across both MHA and SHA. Further analyses will seek to expand upon the initial results presented here, to investigate the wider elements of burden associated with compromised long-term joint health. Disclosures McLaughlin: BioMarin: Consultancy; Novo Nordisk: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Sobi: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Roche/Chugai: Speakers Bureau; Takeda: Speakers Bureau. Hermans:Novo Nordisk: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Roche: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Sobi: Consultancy, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Biogen: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; CAF-DCF: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; CSL Behring: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Shire, a Takeda company: Consultancy, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Pfizer: Consultancy, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Bayer: Consultancy, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; WFH: Other; EAHAD: Other; Octapharma: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Kedrion: Speakers Bureau; LFB: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau. Asghar:HCD Economics: Current Employment. Burke:HCD Economics: Current Employment; University of Chester: Current Employment; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy. Nissen:GSK: Research Funding; Novartis: Research Funding; Actelion: Consultancy; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Current Employment. Aizenas:F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Meier:F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Dhillon:HCD Economics: Current Employment; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Other: All authors received editorial support for this abstract, furnished by Scott Battle, funded by F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, Basel, Switzerland. . O'Hara:F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy; HCD Economics: Current Employment, Current equity holder in private company.
    • Examination and Validation of a Patient-Centric Joint Metric: "Problem Joint"; Empirical Evidence from the CHESS US Dataset

      Burke, Tom; Rodriguez Santana, Idaira; Chowdary, Pratima; Curtis, Randall; Khair, Kate; Laffan, Michael; McLaughlin, Paul; Noone, Declan; O'Mahony, Brian; Pasi, John; et al. (American Society of Hematology, 2020-11-05)
      Introduction Severe hemophilia (FVIII/FIX level <1%) is characterized by spontaneous hemarthrosis leading to progressive joint deterioration and chronic pain in the affected individual. Unless these recurrent hemarthroses can be prevented, e.g. with the use of prophylactic factor replacement therapy, these patients will develop chronic synovitis, pain, and eventually destruction of the joint. Current metrics such as 'Target joint' and other clinical measures of joint morbidity are prevalent and widely accepted. Measures focused solely on bleeding activity, such as the 'Target joint' metric, are arguably becoming less sensitive as current treatment strategies look to significantly reduce or eradicate joint bleeds, though they maintain clinically relevant and complementary to delivery of comprehensive hemophilia care. Key opinion leaders in the haemophilia field have debated the need for a more patient relevant measure of haemophilia-related joint morbidity. 'Problem Joint' (PJ), which is defined as having chronic joint pain and/or limited range of movement due to compromised joint integrity (chronic synovitis and/or haemophilic arthropathy), with or without persistent bleeding was derived through consensus. The objectives of this working group are to examine the usefulness and validity of the PJ metric. Initial research presented here was used to test the sensitivity of PJ as a patient relevant metric with respect to key outcomes for US haemophilia patients. Methods Data on PJs, as well as demographic, clinical and socio-economic variables was captured within the 'Cost of Haemophilia Across Europe: A Socioeconomic Survey' datasets (CHESS: I, II, Paediatric, and US studies). These data contain a total of 992 paediatric (age 1-17) and 2,437 adults (age 18+) with haemophilia from eight European countries and the US. Statistical analysis explored the association of PJ count and location with respect to two key outcomes: quality of life, as measured by an EQ-5D score, and overall work impairment, measured by the Work Productivity and Activity Impairment Questionnaire (WPAI). Those with current inhibitors were excluded from the analysis, and the US cohort comprised the focus of this initial research into the topic. Results The US cohort contained information on 345 people with haemophilia (PwH) and captured adults only, with a mean age of 35 years. Approximately, 43% of PwH had one or more PJs. Lower body PJs were more prevalent than upper body: 40% had one or more lower body PJs vs. 27% upper body. The majority of PJs were located in the ankles, knees and elbows. The relationship between EQ-5D and number of PJs showed a negative trend (see Figure 1): the average EQ-5D score was: 0.81 for those with zero PJs (N=197); 0.79 for those with one PJ (N=24); 0.70 for two PJs (N=29); 0.68 for three PJs (N=24) and 0.49 for those patients with four of more PJs (N=59). Similarly, an increase in number of PJs meant greater work productivity impairment versus no PJs recorded: 30.08% (N=102) vs. 19.51% (N=137), respectively. Discussion Results from the US cohort found that an increase in the number of PJs was associated with an increasing humanistic burden in PwH. The proposed Problem Joint definition takes a holistic viewpoint and provides a patient relevant perspective. Further work is planned to evaluate the appropriateness of the measure, and test the sensitivity in European and pediatric cohorts. Disclosures Burke: HCD Economics: Current Employment; University of Chester: Current Employment; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy. Rodriguez Santana:HCD Economics: Current Employment. Chowdary:Pfizer: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Sobi: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Roche: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Speakers Bureau; Sanofi: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Shire (Baxalta): Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Spark: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; BioMarin: Honoraria; Novo Nordisk: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; CSL Behring: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Chugai: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Speakers Bureau; Freeline: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding; Bayer: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Research Funding. Curtis:Bayer: Consultancy; Novo Nordisk: Consultancy; Patient Reported Outcomes, Burdens and Experiences: Consultancy; USC Hemophilia Utilization Group Study (HUGS): Consultancy. Khair:Haemnet: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Biomarin: Consultancy; HCD Economics: Consultancy; Novo Nordisk: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Medikhair: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Sobi: Consultancy, Honoraria, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; CSL Behring: Honoraria, Research Funding; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Honoraria, Research Funding; Takeda: Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Bayer: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau. Laffan:Shire: Consultancy; LFB: Consultancy; Roche: Consultancy; Sobi: Consultancy; Pfizer: Consultancy; CSL: Consultancy; Pfizer: Speakers Bureau; Bayer: Speakers Bureau; Roche-Chugai: Speakers Bureau; Takeda: Speakers Bureau; Leo-Pharma: Speakers Bureau; Octapharma: Consultancy. McLaughlin:BioMarin: Consultancy; Novo Nordisk: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Sobi: Consultancy, Speakers Bureau; Roche/Chugai: Speakers Bureau; Takeda: Speakers Bureau. Noone:European Haemophilia Consortium: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Research Investigator PROBE: Research Funding; Healthcare Decision Consultants: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees. O'Mahony:Biomarin: Honoraria, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Freeline: Honoraria; UniQure: Honoraria. Pasi:BioMarin: Consultancy, Honoraria, Other: Grants, personal fees, and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia; uniQure: Other: Grants and nonfinancial support , Research Funding; ApcinteX: Consultancy, Other: Personal fees ; Octapharma: Honoraria, Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia , Speakers Bureau; Novo Nordisk: Honoraria, Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia ; Catalyst Biosciences: Consultancy, Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia; Biotest: Consultancy, Honoraria, Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia; Alnylam (Sanofi): Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support ; Takeda: Consultancy, Honoraria, Other: Personal fees; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia ; Sanofi: Honoraria, Other: Personal fees and nonfinancial support; honoraria as member of scientific advisory boards and symposia, Research Funding; Sigilon: Research Funding; Tremeau: Research Funding; Sobi: Consultancy, Honoraria, Other; Roche: Honoraria, Other; Pfizer: Other. Skinner:Genentech: Consultancy, Honoraria; Spark Therapeutics: Other, Speakers Bureau; Pfizer: Other, Speakers Bureau; Takeda: Honoraria, Research Funding; uniQure: Research Funding; Biomarin: Consultancy, Research Funding; CSL Behring: Research Funding; Freeline Therapeutics: Research Funding; Novo Nordisk: Honoraria, Research Funding; Roche: Honoraria, Research Funding; Sanofi: Honoraria, Research Funding, Speakers Bureau; Sobi: Research Funding; Bayer: Consultancy, Research Funding. O'Hara:HCD Economics: Current Employment, Current equity holder in private company; F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd: Consultancy.
    • Flexible shared parental leave: Shaping infant-feeding decisions in the UK - A longitudinal explanatory sequential internet-mediated mixed methods study

      Mason-Whitehead, Elizabeth; Wyndham, Delyth Y (University of Chester, 2020-09)
      Infant feeding is an enduring public health issue. The changes made to parental leave entitlement which came into effect in April 2015 in the United Kingdom (UK) have the potential to impact infant-feeding decisions. The introduction of flexible shared parental leave (SPL) remodelled maternity and paternity (or adoption) entitlement, enabling parents to share up to 50 weeks’ leave. The discourse has not yet considered this policy shift fully, nor has research comprehensively examined whether it will influence parental feeding decisions. The research design was informed by a narrative literature review followed and a systematic review of the literature, which indicated that few studies consider both infant feeding and parental leave. The systematic review found that focus of the discourses tended towards breastfeeding and maternity leave. In light of the interdisciplinary nature of the topic, a longitudinal explanatory sequential mixed methods design was selected to comprehensively address all strands of the research questions. The research was framed by a theoretical framework meta-model derived from Belsky's (1984) process model of the determinants of parenting, set within Bronfenbrenner's (1977, 1979) ecology of human development (later termed the bioecological systems model (2005)) and informed by a pragmatist lens. A sample of parents of infants born in April 2015 (the first eligible for shared parental leave) were surveyed via online questionnaire. At three points over the course of 12 months, the parents were asked to detail how their infants were fed and about leave decisions. Following on from this, a subset of parents were interviewed to illuminate the decision-making process further. The study aimed to baseline behaviour at the point of policy implementation and record attitudes towards shared leave. The outcome of the research is an initial evidence base documenting infant feeding patterns in the UK in 2015, in the context of a potential future shift stemming from the introduction of shared parental leave. In line with expected projections (BIS, 2013), take-up of shared parental leave was low within the sample of parents who took part. Of interest, the small number that did opt for shared parental leave reflected the wider sample tendency towards breastfeeding at 24-hours, yet mixed feeding to 6 months. Nevertheless, the parents that took part did not shy away from revisiting feeding decisions made in light of day-to-day practicalities, any issues they faced and the development of their infant. The study provides insight into the approach of parents opting for mixed feeding i.e., selecting the feeding mode(s) and/or substance(s) or mode(s)/substance(s) seen as most appropriate at the time. It is atypical (contrasted with conventional definitions applied within the research discourse) in disaggregating breastfeeding and breast milk feeding. Finally, the research further evidences the complexity of the narrative in parental decision-making. In view of the findings, further research is needed to document shared parental leave take-up and how parents are choosing to apportion it. A reconsideration of infant feeding definitions by the relevant agencies, to further the granularity of research data in relation to breastfeeding, breast milk feeding and mixed feeding (mixed mode, mixed substance or mixed method - mode and substance - feeding) would be welcome to improve research outcomes. Moreover, as a result of the discontinuation of the quinquennial Infant Feeding Survey series, there is a need for systematic, low cost research at regular intervals to supplement the modest infant feeding data collected via the Personal Child Health Record programme. Without this research, the significance of the impact of the parental leave policy reform in the UK on infant-feeding decisions may be overlooked.
    • Older adults and “scams”: Evidence from the Mass Observation Archive

      Bailey, Jan; Taylor, Louise; Kingston, Paul; Watts, Geoffrey E; University of Chester
      Purpose The issue of financial abuse is highlighted the Care Act (2014). One category of financial abuse is consumer fraud or “scams”. Evidence suggests that scams are becoming increasingly ubiquitous, yet how scams impact older adults remains under-researched. This paper reports the data from 80 older adults’ written response to a Mass Observation Archive Directive, commissioned in autumn 2015, focusing on scams. Study design/methodology/approach A qualitative approach was utilised with data captured via written responses to a set of questions. There was no limit on the length of written accounts and respondents remained anonymous. Data were analysed thematically, resulting in 4 key themes. Findings The data indicated scams impact individuals in terms of health and wellbeing, irrespective of whether they have experienced financial loss, and trigger implementation of strategies intended to avoid being defrauded. There was also evidence of scam related stigma with individuals who are defrauded being subject to derision and censure. Originality/value This paper adopts an original approach to collecting rich, candid data about an under-researched topic. The authors highlight that anti-scam interventions should equip individuals to identify and avoid scams without inciting fear or anxiety; proposing this may be facilitated by drawing on health and safety risk assessment protocol when designing anti-scam interventions. Social implications Individuals who have been victimised by fraudsters may need access to practical and emotional support. This requires the design of appropriate interventions and the stigma associated with being scammed to be addressed.
    • Achieving the unimaginable: Health equity in haemophilia

      Skinner, Mark W.; orcid: 0000-0002-0934-0680; Nugent, Diane; Wilton, Pam; O’Mahony, Brian; Dolan, Gerry; O’Hara, Jamie; Berntorp, Erik; orcid: 0000-0002-1337-7195 (Wiley, 2019-11-13)
    • A sleep hygiene tool for children with developmental disabilities

      Sutton, Julie Elizabeth; Huws, Jaci C; Burton, Christopher; University of Chester; Bangor University; Canterbury Christchurch University
      This article describes a co-design study to develop a sleep hygiene education tool for children with developmental disabilities and behavioural sleep problems. The tool is underpinned by a programme theory, which explains how sleep hygiene education should work to improve children’s sleep. In three co-design workshops, eight parents and six practitioners debated a preliminary sleep hygiene education tool, using themes developed from an earlier evidence review and exploratory study into parent and practitioner experiences of sleep hygiene education. This participatory research established stakeholder acceptability of the SHE tool and confirmed the often-hidden contextual factors that can help or hinder its success, informing the underpinning programme theory.
    • Natural herd immunity should not be used as a means of pandemic control

      Davidovitch, Nadav; Signorelli, Carlo; Chambaud, Laurent; Tenenbaum, Arianne; Reid, John; Middleton, John; ASPHER COVID-19 Task Force, Brussels, Belgium; School of Public Health, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Be’er Sheva, Israel; Università Vita-Salute, San Raffaele (UniSR), Milan, Italy; École des Hautes Études en Sante Publique (EHESP), Rennes, France; Department of Public Health and Wellbeing, University of Chester, Chester, United Kingdom; Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region – ASPHER, Brussels, Belgium
      Short opinion article advising against relying on natural herd immunity and need for vaccine derived population immunity. "We need to focus on using successful virus suppression strategies until we reach herd immunity with the new vaccines. We need to track the epidemiology of the virus using population serology, but it is dangerous, and unfounded in science, to advocate natural herd immunity as a means to pandemic control".
    • Evaluating serious stress in military veterans, their carers and families: a protocol

      Finnegan, Alan; Di Lemma, Lisa; McGhee, Stephen; Watson, Roger; University of Chester; University of Chester; University of Miami; University of Hull
      In 2018, the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust (ACFT) allocated approximately £4M to seven UK projects to address serious stress in military veterans, their carers and families. These programmes commenced between May and October 2019 and will conclude in August 2021. This paper outlines the protocol for the evalu- ation of the Serious Stress programme and the novel support provided to grant holders. Entry into the programmes was through multiple routes, including self-referrals with an antic- ipated sample of approximately 2000 partic- ipants. A common outcomes framework was designed to measure outcomes. Grant holders accepted ownership for data collection and quality and were supported through accompa- nying guidance material. Veterans were often reluctant to seek support, and the anonymous and confidential nature of the evaluation plus the study team’s mili- tary background helped address this. Partic- ipants’ voices were a key part in developing the protocol, leading to results to inform policy and highlight success, efficiency and cost effectiveness, and providing markers for future development. The study provided a reservoir of informa- tion. Interim reports indicated compliance with performance indicators and provided timely evidence. Shared learning provided grant holders with an indication of what was helping the beneficiaries and what needed to be improved. The combination of all data sets provided the ACFT with a resource to demonstrate success and insight into projects where improvement was required, and indi- cators of how to redress these problems. The study protocol provided a platform for building lasting partnerships.
    • An evaluation and critical analysis of the impact of the Aged Veterans Fund

      Di Lemma, Lisa; Howe, Sonia; Finnegan, Alan; University of Chester; Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust.
      There has been research on the numbers and needs of an ageing society yet, relatively little is known about the specific needs of older veterans, and the effectiveness of services specifically developed to meet these needs. In 2016 and 2017, the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust funded invested £30 million to the Aged Veterans Fund (AVF) programme. This consisted of 19 portfolio projects to support health, wellbeing, and social care needs for older veterans (born before 1st January 1950) and their families. This report explores the impact of the AVF, with the intent of informing service providers, stakeholders and policy makers, of the lessons learned and the next steps required for the support of older veterans. A retrospective evaluation focused on both the impact of the processes adopted by the programmes, and the outcomes achieved, was commissioned. Qualitative analysis was performed on 78 eligible source documents, from which 10 recurrent themes were identified. Themes focused on the methodology and evaluations adopted by the projects, the number of beneficiaries reached, challenges encountered, associated costs and savings. In addition, the study identified projects outreach and sustainability, including staff, volunteers and clients perceptions of the services. Finally, there are results regarding the related health and wellbeing benefits, behaviour change and influences on the UK National Health Service (NHS) practice. The findings indicated that project promotion, partnership and collaboration was strong, which provides a foundation for the sustainability and outreach of some of the programmes. The AVF programmes were successfully rolled out via referrals, but this was not without challenges such as capacity, uptake, staffing and timelines issues. Two primary approaches were adopted. The first being a person-centred care approach, that takes into consideration the complex needs of the individual. The second was a skill-exchange model consisting of peers passing on their skills to beneficiaries. The results provided compelling evidence that the AVF initiatives were successful and were positively perceived by beneficiaries, staff and volunteers. Evidence was found on the impact of the fund on boosting resilience in the beneficiaries, by reducing social isolation and improving their health and wellbeing. Additionally, awareness was raised in the wider community, via the delivery of specific educational training to staff. In addition, AVF programmes influenced current health-care practice such as re-admission and discharge rates, via effective signposting and cross-referrals. The lessons learnt lead to recommendations and indicators for the next steps required to support older veterans and their families.
    • Universal credit, Lone mothers and poverty: Some context and challenges for social work with children and families

      Carey, Malcolm; University of Chester
      Universal Credit is a streamlined benefits delivery system initially introduced in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2008. Conditionality-based welfare policies are increasingly international in scale, and are now widely adopted by neoliberal governments on the basis that paid employment offers the most efficacious route out of poverty for citizen-subjects. Numerous studies suggest otherwise, and highlight their negative impact upon the social rights, lived experiences, and attempts to alleviate poverty for service users. This article analyses the reformed benefit system and wider workfare policies effect upon lone mothers, including as a consequence of engagement with an ever more stigmatizing benefit system, and associated risks posed by sanctions or precarious low-paid employment. It highlights some of the consequences for social work with children and families of Universal Credit: including ongoing tensions and challenges created for the profession by the punitive policies of the workfare-orientated centaur state.
    • The use of photo elicitation to explore the impact of social work student’s perceptions of placements on social work tutors and consider their role in practice learning

      Caffrey, Bridget; Fruin, Helen; Bailey-McHale, Julie; Ridgeway, Victoria; Bailey-McHale, Bex; University of Chester
      The importance of learning in practice is acknowledged across health and social care professions. Social work students’ experiences in practice settings has attracted some attention in academic literature, and the role and impact of the Practice Educator (PE) on student learning is increasingly recognised. However, there is a paucity of research examining the role of the social work tutor generally and particularly within practice learning settings. This paper presents a small-scale qualitative study exploring the impact of visual images produced by social work students reflecting their practice experiences on six social work tutors. Photo elicitation prompted discussion in a focus group setting which was subsequently thematically analysed, with four themes emerging. These were dichotomous relationships, difference and diversity, tutor brokerage skills, and student support. The images encouraged tutors to reflect upon the complexity of their relationship with social work students and question whether they were professionally equipped to support students in complex placement situations. In addition, the effectiveness of the curriculum in preparing social work students for practice was considered, particularly space afforded to students to reflect on practice learning in a safe environment. Opportunities to support SW tutors in their role and SW students in practice are deliberated.
    • The neoliberal university, social work and personalised care for older adults

      Carey, Malcolm; University of Chester
      This article critically examines the impact of the neoliberal university upon social work education and practice relating to older people. It appraises market-led pedagogical reforms, including of the training of social workers who go on to work with older adults, such in support of policies including personalisation. Influence is drawn from the work of Nancy Fraser (2019): specifically, her understanding of ‘progressive neoliberalism’, or the improbable fusion of free market ideals with the politics of recognition to create a rejuvenated hegemonic bloc. This theoretical framework is utilized to analyse the prevalence of emancipatory constructs such as empowerment, participation, anti-oppression, equality, choice and independence within acutely underfunded, bureaucratic, and risk-averse fields of social care and social work. While benefiting some older ‘service users’, it is argued that personalisation policy regularly disadvantages or excludes older people within fragmented adult social care sectors. Progressive neoliberalism has helped to promote policies which envisage participative self-care whilst more often excluding or objectifying older adults, especially those with higher level needs.
    • Planning for a second wave pandemic of COVID-19 and planning for winter : A statement from the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region

      Middleton, John; Lopes, Henrique; Michelson, Kai; Reid, John; Wolverhampton University; Universidade Cato´lica; Fulda University; University of Chester
      Planning for a second wave pandemic of COVID-19 and planning for winter : A statement from the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region
    • Resilience and mindfulness in nurse training on an undergraduate curriculum

      Mitchell, Andrew E P; University of Chester
      Purpose. The aim is to investigate what relationships exist between resilience and mindfulness in undergraduate nurse training and how these might contribute to well-being. Design and Methods. One hundred and six students participated in this cross-sectional study. Multivariate and bivariate procedures were utilized to assess the differences between students' demographics, academic resilience and mindfulness. Findings. The findings suggested that acceptance and attention within mindfulness were important for resilience. Students who had higher levels of academic resilience also had higher indexes of mindfulness. Practice Implications. A key implication is that learning and practice areas should ensure that well-being, mindfulness and resilience literacy are key issues for students in training. This is at a time when mental health support and staff retention are foremost in policymakers’ minds.
    • Employment support needs of personnel undergoing a medical discharge: a phenomenological and IPA study based on the experiences of British Army Veterans and Stakeholders

      Thomas, Mike; Mason-Whitehead, Elizabeth; Flood, Grahame H. (University of Chester, 2020-10-30)
      Wounded, injured and sick (WIS) military personnel from operations in Iraq and Afghanistan 2003-14 initially lacked comprehensive holistic recovery support. An Army Recovery Capability (ARC) evolved to improve such support. Future employment is an important factor in recovery and transition. This study examines the employment support needs of Army WIS likely to be medically discharged. Until this study, little research specifically considered such needs. The study examines military to civilian Transition in its widest sense. Holistic Transition involves coming to terms with ‘the new me’, including a civilian identity in a timeframe preceding and extending beyond military discharge. The voice of individual WIS personnel has been lacking in reviewing recovery and transition. Using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA), data from twelve medically discharged veterans was triangulated against data from five specialist employment consultants and six military and charity stakeholders. The main findings are that the employment needs of the WIS are not fully defined, identified, assessed or reviewed by the chain of command. Methods of effectiveness (MOEs) are lacking in the MOD, hampering the Army’s capability to manage change and assess the effectiveness of its processes and programmes. A lack of resources, unsynchronised policy, poor communications, and a gap between intent and delivery causes variation in support from the chain of command; whilst compensating charity resources mask inefficiencies in the MOD. Recommendations include a major review of the ARC and the medical discharge process; treating employment support as a subset of a broader Transition; the development of MOEs; greater compliance with policy and improved assurance; further research to examine individual WIS needs and outcomes and the use of identity process theory to enhance understanding of the challenges of change facing service leavers crossing the military-civilian divide. A life-course view is recommended to improve military reintegration and the optimisation of available resources.
    • Reflecting on the characteristics and values of military nurses: war zone qualitative research

      Finnegan, Alan; University of Chester
      Background. Between 2001 and 2014, British military nurses served in Afghanistan caring for both Service personnel and local nationals of all ages. However, there have been few research studies assessing the effectiveness of the military nurses’ operational role and no papers naming the core values and characteristics. This paper is the only qualitative nursing study completed in this period where data was collected in the War Zone. Objective. To explore the characteristics and values that are intrinsic to military nurses in undertaking their operational role. Design. A Constructivist Grounded Theory was utilised. The first author designed the interview schedule, then conducted and transcribed the discussions. Informed consent and UK Ministry of Defence Research Ethical Committee approval was obtained. Setting. Camp Bastion Hospital, Afghanistan, in 2013. Method. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 British Armed Forces nurses. Results. A theoretical model was developed that identifies the intrinsic characteristics and values required to be a military nurse. Nursing care delivered within the operational environment was perceived as outstanding. Nurses consciously detached themselves from any legal processes and treated each casualty as a vulnerable patient, resulting in care, compassion and dignity being provided for all patients, irrespective of their background, beliefs or affiliations. Conclusion. The study findings provides military nurses with a framework for a realistic personal development plan that will allow them to build upon their strengths as well as to identify and ameliorate potential areas of weakness. Placing nurses first, with a model that focusses on the requirements of a good nurse has the potential to lead to better patient care, and improve the quality of the tour for defence nurses. These findings have international implications and have the potential for transferability to any level of military or civilian nursing practice.
    • The cat is out of the bag – point-of-care testing (POCT) is here to stay

      Phin, Nick; Poutanen, Susan M (European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC), 2020-11-05)
    • Population Health Screening after Environmental Pollution

      Stewart, Alex G.; orcid: 0000-0002-4931-5340; email: dragonsteeth@doctors.org.uk; Wilkinson, Ewan; orcid: 0000-0002-2167-8756; email: ewilkinson@chester.ac.uk (MDPI, 2020-11-24)
      Following environmental pollution exposure, calls to screen the population for disease or disease markers are often made. Population screening is a cross-sectional review of a population to find latent cases or biomarkers of disease that indicate the possibility of disease development; it differs from environmental screening or an epidemiological survey. Recognized standard approaches have been developed over 60 years to ensure quality and effectiveness in complex programs. We surveyed the literature for papers on health screening following environmental exposures and checked them for reference to accepted criteria such as those of Wilson and Jungner. We applied these criteria to three situations covering source/hazard (arsenic contaminated land), pathway/exposure (radiation release), and receptor/disease (lead poisoning). We identified 36 relevant papers. Although across the papers the whole range of criteria were addressed, no paper or program utilized recognized criteria. Issues and gaps identified included limited strategic approaches, lack of treatment, environmental prevention being seen as the screening outcome instead of treatment of identified individuals, and programs which did not fit the World Health Organization screening description. Robust discussion in the literature is needed to consider the organization and role of health screening following environmental exposures.
    • Exploring the emotional experience of lean

      Taylor, Siobhan; McSherry, Robert; Cook, Susy; Giles, Emma; Coventry University; University of Chester; Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust; Teesside University
      Purpose – This research aims to contribute to the literature on Lean implementation in healthcare by studying the emotional experiences of the relevant actors related to a Rapid Process Improvement Workshop (RPIW) in a UK healthcare context. The purpose of this study was to go beyond what people think about Lean and towards an exploration of their subjective, emotional and “feeling” experience and whether that emotional experience influenced Lean implementation. Design/methodology/approach – A phenomenological and symbolic interactionist qualitative case study was undertaken. Data related to participants’ emotional experience were collected through non-participant observation and semi-structured interviews. Data were analysed using thematic network analysis. Findings – This paper provides novel insights into the emotional experience of Lean as experienced through an RPIW. The findings reveal that participation in an RPIW is much more than a technical process. It influences how people feel about themselves, is based on relationships with others, and requires mental, physical and emotional effort. All of these factors influence engagement with, initiation of and sustainability of the RPIW. Research limitations/implications – A new conceptual framework for the planning and implementation of RPIWs has been developed. However, because of the chosen research approach, the results may lack generalisability. Therefore, researchers are encouraged to test the framework and proposed practice implications. Originality/value – Despite emotions being an integral part of individual and social everyday life, emotional experience has not been studied in relation to Lean. This study is the first to explore emotions in relation to Lean, with implications for practice as to how RPIWs are managed with a new framework for implementation being proposed.