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“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”
Carl Sagan


Improving hospital safety

A recent report by Stephen Duckett and colleagues addresses how safety data is collected and used by hospitals. Duckett discusses the range of sources available for collecting safety data such as quality registries, patient reported experience measures (PREM) and patient reported outcome measures (PROM). The report authors strongly encourage hospitals to improve their use of safety data as "the data needs to be shared - quickly, and with the right people" in order to improve patient care.

Source: Grattan Institute 2017; November

Further reading
Electronic medication management systems: A guide to safe implementation (3rd ed)
This guide "supports the safe and effective implementation and use of electronic medication management (EMM) systems in Australian health service organisations". New material covered includes national medication safety priorities; recent EMM implementations; business continuity planning; data management and analytics; and embedding the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme into workflows.
Source: ACSQHC 2017


Preventing surgical site infection

Surgical site infections (SSIs) are a preventable complication associated with poor patient outcomes and increased hospital costs. Irrigation of surgical wounds and intracavity lavage are techniques that may reduce the rate of SSIs. Authors of a new Cochrane review conclude that the evidence base for these techniques is of low certainty. 

Source: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2017;10: CD012234


Hydrogel & honey – a new wound treatment?

A study from Alexandria Main University Hospital in Egypt has used a hydrogel sheet loaded with a new formula extracted from manuka honey as a dressing for infected chronic wounds. The study authors suggest this provides an alternative approach for patients unable to tolerate high doses of antibiotics.

Source: Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance 2017; 11: 171-176
Full text available for Austin & MHW Heidelberg staff via document delivery


BMJ Best Practice

Recently redeveloped, BMJ Best Practice has a new-look website and updated app for iOS and Android. BMJ Best Practice is a clinical decision support tool and a recommended alternative resource to UpToDate. The new update provides:


Delayed cord clamping - preterm infants

Globally around 15 million infants are born preterm (<37 weeks gestation) each year and approximately one million die. Several trials have investigated whether delayed clamping of the umbilical cord to enhance placental transfusion can reduce adverse outcomes. This current review of 18 trials provides high quality evidence that delayed clamping does reduce both mortality and infant blood transfusions in preterm and very preterm (<28 weeks gestation) infants. For very preterm infants, the authors suggest that using delayed clamping could achieve between 11,000 and 100,000 additional survivors each year.

Source: American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology 2017; online first: 30 October


Inherited risk of high cholesterol – NICE guidance

Familial hypercholesterolaemia (FH) is a genetic condition causing abnormally high levels of cholesterol to build up in the body and if untreated, can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Recent figures indicate "only 15% of the estimated 260,000 people in the UK with FH have been diagnosed, including just 600 of the 56,000 children thought to have the condition". This updated guideline from NICE provides recommendations for the early identification and management of FH.

Source: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence November 2017


Future of health care in Australia

The current issue of the MJA has several articles focusing on antimicrobial resistance and infection prevalence. This issue also contains a statement from the Minister for Health, the Honourable Greg Hunt MP, on the future of health care in Australia; in the next MJA issue, Shadow Minister for Health and Medicare the Honourable Catherine King MP will outline the opposition's viewpoint.

Source: MJA 2017; 207(9)


Did you know?

Cochrane Australia podcasts
Cochrane Australia has launched a new podcast series "The recommended dose with Ray Moynihan". The series explores insights, evidence and ideas from researchers and health professionals around the world. Recent episodes feature Professor Paul Glasziou from Bond University and Dr Fiona Godlee editor-in-chief of The BMJ.

MEDLINE year-end processing
From mid-November to mid-December the National Library of Medicine (NLM) performs maintenance to MEDLINE data. During this time, any searching performed using Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) will not retrieve the newest citations, therefore we recommend using text words to retrieve these.


Austin Health Research Online - recent submissions

Design considerations for an eHealth decision support tool in inflammatory bowel disease self-management 
Jackson BD, Con D, De Cruz P, Internal Medicine Journal 2017; online first: 14 November

Frequency and significance of a qSOFA criteria during adult rapid response team reviews: a prospective cohort study
Le Guen MC, Ballueer Y, McKay R, Resuscitation 2017; online first: 10 November

An interview study of patient and caregiver perspectives on advance care planning in ESRD 
Sellars M, Clayton JM, Morton RL, American Journal of Kidney Diseases 2017; online first: 10 November

Thai clinicians' attitudes toward antimicrobial stewardship programs 
Sutthiruk N, Considine J, Hutchinson A, American Journal of Infection Control 2017; online first: 10 November

Prediction of drowsiness events in night shift workers during morning driving 
Liang Y, Horrey WJ, Howard ME, Accident Analysis & Prevention 2017; online first: 7 November
Full text available for Austin & MHW Heidelberg staff via document delivery

See more at AHRO, Austin Health Research Online


Books Spotlight

Making sense of fluids and electrolytes : a hands-on guide / Zoja Milovanovi and Abisola Adeleye – CRC Press, 2017.
This pocket sized guide, reflecting current NICE guidelines, provides information on the causes and management of fluid and electrolyte imbalance.

Paediatric clinical examination made easy / Denis Gill and Niall O’Brien – 6th ed. Elsevier, 2018.
Based on the notion that "paediatrics is much more than medicine miniaturised", this updated edition contains short manageable chapters, clinical checklists, helpful topic sections and multiple choice questions.

Social work : contexts and practice / edited by Marie Connolly, Louise Harms and Jane Maidment – 4th ed. Oxford University Press, 2017.
This book can be used as a “go to” text for all aspects of social work. It is designed to guide students through the diverse issues faced by social workers in the field and provide them with the practice skills they require.


Journals Spotlight

These links provide access to the current table of contents:

American Heart Journal

Australasian Journal on Ageing


Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research

Diabetes Care

Evidence-Based Nursing

The Foot



Pain Medicine

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