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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 18, Issue 17 (September-1 2021) – 533 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Does climate play a role in the spread of COVID-19? Using Australian case studies from January to October 2020, we found that the maximum and average UVI and solar exposure positively correlate with COVID-19 case numbers after one and 19 days, whereas these factors revealed a negative association after five days. Minimum temperature showed a negative association after one day, but a positive correlation after 21 days. These findings may reflect the time required for SARS-CoV-2 to show up on RTPCR tests. The findings may also be related to changes in activity due to climate. Other weather attributes require exploration, as does the impact of COVID-19 variants and government-imposed restrictions. If outside activities that are facilitated by sunshine and warmer weather impact viral spread, this must be factored into any future management strategy. View this paper.
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Review
Impact of the SARS-CoV-2 Coronavirus Pandemic on Physical Activity, Mental Health and Quality of Life in Professional Athletes—A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9423; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179423 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 1090
Abstract
Due to the rapid rate of spread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, a number of restrictions have been introduced into public spaces, including those related to the operation of sports facilities, compounding the difficulty for athletes to conduct appropriate forms of training. The aim [...] Read more.
Due to the rapid rate of spread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, a number of restrictions have been introduced into public spaces, including those related to the operation of sports facilities, compounding the difficulty for athletes to conduct appropriate forms of training. The aim of this study was to review current scientific reports assessing the impact of the pandemic on the physical activity, mental state, and quality of life of professional athletes. Popular scientific databases—PubMed, Scopus, and Embase—were systematically searched from the beginning of the pandemic until 12 July 2021. According to the adopted criteria, 14 articles were included in the review. Ten of the qualified studies determined the impact of the pandemic on the physical activity of athletes. The authors of 11 papers assessed the mental state and quality of life of athletes during the pandemic. The studies showed negative effects of the pandemic: a decrease in overall physical fitness and number of days and hours of training, as well as an increase in the occurrence of negative emotions (stress, fatigue, and depression) and a decrease in sleep quality. Changes in physical activity had an impact on overall well-being ratings, which depended on the sex of the subjects. Women were more likely to experience negative emotions compared to men. The mental state of the athletes affected the quality of sleep. This review summarises the negative effects of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus pandemic on the physical and mental health of professional athletes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Health-Related Quality of Life)
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Essay
Regional Travel as an Alternative Form of Tourism during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Impacts of a Low-Risk Perception and Perceived Benefits
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9422; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179422 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 678
Abstract
Previous COVID-19 tourism research has not considered the positive impact of a low-risk perception and a perception of the benefits of regional travel on taking alternative tourism. This study attempts to fill the research gap and examine the positive effect of these perceptions [...] Read more.
Previous COVID-19 tourism research has not considered the positive impact of a low-risk perception and a perception of the benefits of regional travel on taking alternative tourism. This study attempts to fill the research gap and examine the positive effect of these perceptions on tourists’ attitudes to regional travel and intentions to undertake regional travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. A survey of 278 respondents confirmed that the perceived benefit positively influences tourists’ attitudes and travel intentions, but that a low-risk perception only positively affects their attitudes. This study contributes to tourism risk management research by introducing the concept of a low-risk perception as a positive factor. For tourism recovery, it finds that relaxation, value, and convenience are benefits to drive people to travel. Full article
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Article
Development and Comparison of Dengue Vulnerability Indices Using GIS-Based Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis in Lao PDR and Thailand
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9421; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18179421 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 600
Abstract
Dengue is a continuous health burden in Laos and Thailand. We assessed and mapped dengue vulnerability in selected provinces of Laos and Thailand using multi-criteria decision approaches. An ecohealth framework was used to develop dengue vulnerability indices (DVIs) that explain links between population, [...] Read more.
Dengue is a continuous health burden in Laos and Thailand. We assessed and mapped dengue vulnerability in selected provinces of Laos and Thailand using multi-criteria decision approaches. An ecohealth framework was used to develop dengue vulnerability indices (DVIs) that explain links between population, social and physical environments, and health to identify exposure, susceptibility, and adaptive capacity indicators. Three DVIs were constructed using two objective approaches, Shannon’s Entropy (SE) and the Water-Associated Disease Index (WADI), and one subjective approach, the Best-Worst Method (BWM). Each DVI was validated by correlating the index score with dengue incidence for each spatial unit (district and subdistrict) over time. A Pearson’s correlation coefficient (r) larger than 0.5 and a p-value less than 0.05 implied a good spatial and temporal performance. Spatially, DVIWADI was significantly correlated on average in 19% (4–40%) of districts in Laos (mean r = 0.5) and 27% (15–53%) of subdistricts in Thailand (mean r = 0.85). The DVISE was validated in 22% (12–40%) of districts in Laos and in 13% (3–38%) of subdistricts in Thailand. The DVIBWM was only developed for Laos because of lack of data in Thailand and was significantly associated with dengue incidence on average in 14% (0–28%) of Lao districts. The DVIWADI indicated high vulnerability in urban centers and in areas with plantations and forests. In 2019, high DVIWADI values were observed in sparsely populated areas due to elevated exposure, possibly from changes in climate and land cover, including urbanization, plantations, and dam construction. Of the three indices, DVIWADI was the most suitable vulnerability index for the study area. The DVIWADI can also be applied to other water-associated diseases, such as Zika and chikungunya, to highlight priority areas for further investigation and as a tool for prevention and interventions. Full article
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Article
The Effect of Perceived Supervisor–Subordinate Congruence in Honesty on Emotional Exhaustion: A Polynomial Regression Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9420; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179420 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 488
Abstract
Do subordinates unequivocally prefer honest superv =isors? This study investigates whether congruence in supervisor–subordinate honesty has a positive effect on lowering the emotional exhaustion experienced by subordinates. For the research data, a two-part survey with a one-month time interval was conducted among office [...] Read more.
Do subordinates unequivocally prefer honest superv =isors? This study investigates whether congruence in supervisor–subordinate honesty has a positive effect on lowering the emotional exhaustion experienced by subordinates. For the research data, a two-part survey with a one-month time interval was conducted among office workers, and 409 responses were collected. These were empirically analyzed using polynomial regression analysis and response surface analysis, instead of the common methodology based on difference values used in past studies on the fit between a person and their environment. The analysis results confirmed that supervisor–subordinate congruence in honesty has a negative relationship with subordinates’ emotional exhaustion and supervisor–subordinate congruence at higher levels of honesty will have stronger negative relationships with emotional exhaustion. This study expands the intrapersonal context of the existing research on supervisors’ honesty to the interpersonal context and empirically demonstrates the effect of honesty congruence. It also discusses its theoretical and practical implications as well as limitations, and it provides suggestions for future studies. Full article
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Article
Development and Validation of a Scale for Interaction between Parents and Coaches of Middle and High School Golf Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9419; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179419 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 503
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to develop a measurement tool for the interaction between parents and coaches of middle and high school golfers, and to verify its validity. A total of 563 parents participated in the study. Based on the results of [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to develop a measurement tool for the interaction between parents and coaches of middle and high school golfers, and to verify its validity. A total of 563 parents participated in the study. Based on the results of preliminary item production, item analysis, reliability analysis, exploratory factor analysis, identification factor analysis, job uniformity analysis, and potential mean comparison analysis, the initial 70 items were constructed according to the conceptualization of parent–coach interactions. The first and second item reduction processes and preliminary surveys were conducted through expert meetings to produce the final 40 items of parent–coach interactions. After eliminating 20 items through question analysis, reliability analysis, and exploratory factor analysis, the final three factors of parent–coach interaction were extracted, and the conformity index for the middle and high school golfers’ parent-to-coach interaction tool was checked. Then, to ensure the external validity of the developed parent–coach interaction measurement tool, a construct equivalence analysis was conducted to demonstrate that the tool can be applied equally to parents and coaches. In summary, the tools for measuring the interaction between the middle and high school golfers’ parents and coaches were developed in 20 questions, three factors for communication, qualification, and support, and it was confirmed that the developed measuring tools could all be applied equally through a latent mean analysis. Parents and coaches are key variables that can affect a player’s performance; thus parents and coaches’ interaction measuring tools can be provide positive information not only for golfers but also for players of various other sports. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Exercise and Health)
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Article
Health-Related Quality of Life and Frequency of Physical Activity in Spanish Students Aged 8–14
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9418; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179418 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 527
Abstract
The study of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in children and adolescents has important implications in terms of policy, education, and health. Data on the time spent in physical activity (PA) and in sedentary activities in this population are worrying. We aim to [...] Read more.
The study of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in children and adolescents has important implications in terms of policy, education, and health. Data on the time spent in physical activity (PA) and in sedentary activities in this population are worrying. We aim to analyze possible differences in HRQoL and PA levels between sexes and age groups in Spanish students aged between 8 and 14 years, as well as to assess the relationship between HRQoL and the frequency of PA in this population. A total of 3197 participants (1610 boys and 1587 girls) from 8 to 14 years old were recruited. Mquality and Mapping Child Health Utility instrument (Chu9d) were used as HRQoL indicators. A medium positive association between PA and HRQoL concerning the Spanish school population was found. HRQoL was higher among students aged 8 to 12 than 13 to 14. Moreover, when children start secondary education, both sexes seem to lose the quality of life. Similarly, PA decreases among girls over the years, although it seems to increase among boys. Thus, PA levels and HRQoL are directly associated in Spanish schoolchildren aged between 8 and 14 years. However, this HRQoL decreases in children over the years. Practical implications include the need to support education and physical activity programs to improve HRQoL in children and adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Global Health)
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Article
Long-Term Assessment of Surface Water Quality in a Highly Managed Estuary Basin
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9417; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179417 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 503
Abstract
Anthropogenic developments in coastal watersheds cause significant ecological changes to estuaries. Since estuaries respond to inputs on relatively long time scales, robust analyses of long-term data should be employed to account for seasonality, internal cycling, and climatological cycles. This study characterizes the water [...] Read more.
Anthropogenic developments in coastal watersheds cause significant ecological changes to estuaries. Since estuaries respond to inputs on relatively long time scales, robust analyses of long-term data should be employed to account for seasonality, internal cycling, and climatological cycles. This study characterizes the water quality of a highly managed coastal basin, the St. Lucie Estuary Basin, FL, USA, from 1999 to 2019 to detect spatiotemporal differences in the estuary’s water quality and its tributaries. The estuary is artificially connected to Lake Okeechobee, so it receives fresh water from an external basin. Monthly water samples collected from November 1999 to October 2019 were assessed using principal component analysis, correlation analysis, and the Seasonal Kendall trend test. Nitrogen, phosphorus, color, total suspended solids, and turbidity concentrations varied seasonally and spatially. Inflows from Lake Okeechobee were characterized by high turbidity, while higher phosphorus concentrations characterized inflows from tributaries within the basin. Differences among tributaries within the basin may be attributed to flow regimes (e.g., significant releases vs. steady flow) and land use (e.g., pasture vs. row crops). Decreasing trends for orthophosphate, total phosphorus, and color and increasing trends for dissolved oxygen were found over the long term. Decreases in nutrient concentrations over time could be due to local mitigation efforts. Understanding the differences in water quality between the tributaries of the St. Lucie Estuary is essential for the overall water quality management of the estuary. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Quality and Ecosystem Monitoring, Analysis, and Management)
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Article
An Instrument to Operationalize the Balance between Risks and Resources and Predict Job Burnout
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9416; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179416 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 499
Abstract
The goal of the present paper was to develop a valid and reliable instrument to operationalize the balance between job demands and resources in order to predict job burnout. After generating the items, we first conducted a cross-sectional study (Study 1) based on [...] Read more.
The goal of the present paper was to develop a valid and reliable instrument to operationalize the balance between job demands and resources in order to predict job burnout. After generating the items, we first conducted a cross-sectional study (Study 1) based on 656 participants, which provided preliminary evidence for the validity of the balance. We then conducted a longitudinal study (Study 2) based on 882 participants to improve and validate the final version of the balance. In study 1, the (im)balance between risks and resources explained a high percentage of variance in job burnout (44%) and a significant percentage in job turnover intention (27%) as well as subjective health (12%). In study 2, results indicated that a change in the balance produced significant change in job burnout scores over time. In addition, balance scores positively predicted positive outcomes (i.e., overall job satisfaction and subjective health) and negatively predicted negative outcomes (i.e., job turnover intention, counterproductive behaviors at work, depression, alcohol use, sleep disorders and somatic complaints). Findings support the usefulness of the Balance for clinicians, companies and researchers interested in assessing job demands and resources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Stress and Health: Psychological Burden and Burnout)
Article
Emotional Control among Nurses against Work Conditions and the Support Received during the SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9415; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179415 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 619
Abstract
Introduction. Working in the state of a pandemic is a huge mental load for the medical environment. Aim. Evaluation of emotional control among nurses against work conditions and the support received during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Material and methods. The research was performed among [...] Read more.
Introduction. Working in the state of a pandemic is a huge mental load for the medical environment. Aim. Evaluation of emotional control among nurses against work conditions and the support received during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Material and methods. The research was performed among nurses (n = 577) working during the pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus in infectious (n = 201) and non-infectious (n = 376) wards in 11 Polish hospitals. To evaluate work conditions, the questionnaire prepared by the authors and the Emotional Control Scale (Courtauld Emotional Control Scale—CECS), which rates the control of anger, depression, and fear were used. Results. In the entire research group, fear had the highest rate of suppression among the negative emotions—18.25 points, 17.91 points in infectious wards and 18.44 points among nurses working in non-infectious wards; p > 0.05. The nurses fear was significantly repressed when there was no possibility of the nurses having to perform a COVID-19 test in the workplace; p < 0.05. A larger emotional supressed occurred in nurses who simultaneously declared the perception of increased stress level; p < 0.05. Conclusions. A high level of emotion suppression, especially regarding fear, combined with higher stress levels, occurring irrespective of the ward, points at the need for mental support for the researched nurses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nursing)
Article
Impact of the Result of Soccer Matches on the Heart Rate Variability of Women Soccer Players
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9414; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179414 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 606
Abstract
The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of a match lost and a match won on post-competitive heart rate variability (HRV) in semi-professional female soccer athletes. A total of 13 players, with a mean age of 23.75 (5.32), from the Cáceres Women [...] Read more.
The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of a match lost and a match won on post-competitive heart rate variability (HRV) in semi-professional female soccer athletes. A total of 13 players, with a mean age of 23.75 (5.32), from the Cáceres Women Football Club of the Spanish Second National Division participated in our study. They were evaluated in two microcycles which correspond to a match lost and a match won. For each microcycle, baseline and post-competitive measures were collected. Results indicate that HRV was significantly reduced before a match lost and won. Significant differences in HRV variables were observed when compared the lost match, and the match won. Results highlight the importance and usefulness of analyzing the HRV as an indicator of post-competitive fatigue in semiprofessional soccer players. Therefore, a competition’s results could be considered a relevant variable to consider when programming training load. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Training for Optimal Sports Performance and Health)
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Article
Combining Child Functioning Data with Learning and Support Needs Data to Create Disability-Identification Algorithms in Fiji’s Education Management Information System
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9413; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179413 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 539
Abstract
Disability disaggregation of Fiji’s Education Management Information System (FEMIS) is required to determine eligibility for inclusive education grants. Data from the UNICEF/Washington Group Child Functioning Module (CFM) alone is not accurate enough to identify disabilities for this purpose. This study explores whether combining [...] Read more.
Disability disaggregation of Fiji’s Education Management Information System (FEMIS) is required to determine eligibility for inclusive education grants. Data from the UNICEF/Washington Group Child Functioning Module (CFM) alone is not accurate enough to identify disabilities for this purpose. This study explores whether combining activity and participation data from the CFM with data on environmental factors specific to learning and support needs (LSN) more accurately identifies children with disabilities. A survey on questions related to children’s LSN (personal assistance, adaptations to learning, or assessment and assistive technology) was administered to teachers within a broader diagnostic accuracy study. Descriptive statistics and correlations were used to analyze relationships between functioning and LSN. While CFM data are useful in distinguishing between disability domains, LSN data are useful in strengthening the accuracy of disability severity data and, crucially, in identifying which children have disability amongst those reported as having some difficulty on the CFM. Combining activity and participation data from the CFM with environmental factors data through algorithms may increase the accuracy of domain-specific disability identification. Amongst children reported as having some difficulty on the CFM, those with disabilities are effectively identified through the addition of LSN data. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Measuring Disability and Disability Inclusive Development)
Article
Chemical Fractionation, Environmental, and Human Health Risk Assessment of Potentially Toxic Elements in Soil of Industrialised Urban Areas in Serbia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9412; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179412 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 458
Abstract
The primary focus of this research was the chemical fractionation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) and their presence in several industrialised cities in Serbia. Furthermore, their origin, contamination levels, and environmental and human health risks were assessed. The results indicated that the examined [...] Read more.
The primary focus of this research was the chemical fractionation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) and their presence in several industrialised cities in Serbia. Furthermore, their origin, contamination levels, and environmental and human health risks were assessed. The results indicated that the examined soils were characterised by slightly higher Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn levels than those set by European and national regulations. These elevated Cu, Pb, and Zn concentrations were caused by intensive traffic and proximity to industry, whereas the higher Ni levels were a result of the specific geological substrate of the soil in the study area. The environmental risk was found to be low and there was no enrichment/contamination of the soil with these elements, except in the case of Pb, for which moderate to significant enrichment was found. Lead also poses a potential non-carcinogenic risk to children through ingestion and requires special attention due to the fact that a significant proportion of this element was present in the tested soil samples in a potentially available form. Analysis of the health risks showed that children are more at risk than adults from contaminants and that ingestion is the riskiest exposure route. The carcinogenic risk was within the acceptable limits. Full article
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Review
Leptospirosis and Coinfection: Should We Be Concerned?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9411; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179411 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 609
Abstract
Pathogenic Leptospira is the causative agent of leptospirosis, an emerging zoonotic disease affecting animals and humans worldwide. The risk of host infection following interaction with environmental sources depends on the ability of Leptospira to persist, survive, and infect the new host to continue [...] Read more.
Pathogenic Leptospira is the causative agent of leptospirosis, an emerging zoonotic disease affecting animals and humans worldwide. The risk of host infection following interaction with environmental sources depends on the ability of Leptospira to persist, survive, and infect the new host to continue the transmission chain. Leptospira may coexist with other pathogens, thus providing a suitable condition for the development of other pathogens, resulting in multi-pathogen infection in humans. Therefore, it is important to better understand the dynamics of transmission by these pathogens. We conducted Boolean searches of several databases, including Google Scholar, PubMed, SciELO, and ScienceDirect, to identify relevant published data on Leptospira and coinfection with other pathogenic bacteria. We review the role of the host-microbiota in determining the synanthropic interaction of Leptospira sp. with other bacteria, thus creating a suitable condition for the leptospira to survive and persist successfully. We also discuss the biotic and abiotic factors that amplify the viability of Leptospira in the environment. The coinfection of leptospira with pathogenic bacteria has rarely been reported, potentially contributing to a lack of awareness. Therefore, the occurrence of leptospirosis coinfection may complicate diagnosis, long-lasting examination, and mistreatment that could lead to mortality. Identifying the presence of leptospirosis with other bacteria through metagenomic analysis could reveal possible coinfection. In conclusion, the occurrence of leptospirosis with other diseases should be of concern and may depend on the success of the transmission and severity of individual infections. Medical practitioners may misdiagnose the presence of multiple infections and should be made aware of and receive adequate training on appropriate treatment for leptospirosis patients. Physicians could undertake a more targeted approach for leptospirosis diagnosis by considering other symptoms caused by the coinfected bacteria; thus, more specific treatment could be given. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Infectious Disease Epidemiology)
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Article
Pneumonia Risk Associated with the Use of Individual Benzodiazepines and Benzodiazepine Related Drugs among the Elderly with Parkinson’s Disease
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9410; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179410 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 552
Abstract
Most patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) gradually develop oropharyngeal dysphagia which is often associated with pneumonia risk. The possible association of benzodiazepine (BZD) and benzodiazepine related drugs (BZRD) use with pneumonia risk has received increasing attention but remains controversial. We investigated pneumonia risk [...] Read more.
Most patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) gradually develop oropharyngeal dysphagia which is often associated with pneumonia risk. The possible association of benzodiazepine (BZD) and benzodiazepine related drugs (BZRD) use with pneumonia risk has received increasing attention but remains controversial. We investigated pneumonia risk associated with the use of BZDs and BZRDs in older adult patients with PD. This case-control study analyzed data of 551,975 older adult patients with PD between 2001 and 2018 in Taiwan. To minimize potential confounding, we used 1:4 propensity score matching to include older adult patients without pneumonia as controls. Incident pneumonia risk was significantly higher in current (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.25, 95% CI = 1.23–1.27) and past (aOR = 1.13, 95% CI = 1.11–1.15) users of BZDs. Regarding BZRDs, recent (aOR = 1.08, 95% CI = 1.06–1.11) and past (aOR = 0.89, 95% CI = 0.88–0.91) users had higher and lower risks of incident pneumonia, respectively. Pneumonia risk varied based on their use of BZDs and BZRDs. In these individuals, incident pneumonia risk was high in users of BZDs, such as midazolam, lorazepam, flunitrazepam, estazolam, and clonazepam. Regarding the use of BZRDs, zopiclone increased incident pneumonia risk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health and Wellbeing on Aging)
Review
Empty Zona Pellucida Only Case: A Critical Review of the Literature
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9409; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179409 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 448
Abstract
The presence of empty zona pellucida (EZP) in oocytes following oocyte retrieval (OR) during an in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle presents a major clinical and laboratory challenge in assisted reproduction. It has been attributed to several factors such as the ovarian stimulation protocol [...] Read more.
The presence of empty zona pellucida (EZP) in oocytes following oocyte retrieval (OR) during an in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle presents a major clinical and laboratory challenge in assisted reproduction. It has been attributed to several factors such as the ovarian stimulation protocol employed, the damaging of the follicles during oocyte retrieval (OR) mainly through the high aspiration pressure, during the denudation technique, and the degeneration of oolemma within the zona pellucida (ZP) through apoptosis. The role of ZP is pivotal from the early stages of follicular development up to the preimplantation embryo development and embryo hatching. Polymorphisms or alterations on the genes that encode ZP proteins may contribute to EZP. We present a critical review of the published literature hitherto on EZP and available options when encountered with the phenomenon of EZP. Concerning the former, we found that there is rare data on this phenomenon that merits documentation. The latter includes technical, genetic, and pathophysiological perspectives, along with specific treatment options. In conclusion, we identify the lack of a definitive management proposal for couples presenting with this phenomenon, we underline the need for an algorithm, and indicate the questions raised that point towards our goal for a strategy when addressing a previous finding of EZP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Women's Health)
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Article
Correlation between the Ability to Manipulate a Touchscreen Device and Hand Strength and Manual Dexterity among Community-Living Older Individuals
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9408; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179408 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 462
Abstract
Information regarding the relationship between the degree of hand function among the elderly as measured by traditional assessments and the ability to manipulate touchscreens is lacking. This study aimed to examine the correlation between the ability to manipulate a touchscreen device, as assessed [...] Read more.
Information regarding the relationship between the degree of hand function among the elderly as measured by traditional assessments and the ability to manipulate touchscreens is lacking. This study aimed to examine the correlation between the ability to manipulate a touchscreen device, as assessed using the touchscreen assessment tool (TATOO) (University of Haifa, Israel & Universetiy of Bologna, Italy), and hand strength and manual dexterity among independent community-living older individuals. Thirty-four community-living older adults (average age 79.4 ± 6.7 years) participated in single-session assessments lasting 45 min each. The assessment included hand strength measurement using the manual hand dynamometry and hydraulic pinch gauge, a functional dexterity test (FDT), and TATOO. No significant correlations were observed between most of the TATOO items (22 out of 26) and handgrip strength, pinch strength, and FDT results. Moderately significant correlations were demonstrated between the number of drag attempts in the “Drag to different directions” task and handgrip strength and manual dexterity (r value: −0.39, p value: 0.02; r value: 0.36, p value: 0.04, respectively). In addition, a moderately significant correlation was noted between the number of double taps and manual dexterity (r value: 0.32, p value: 0.07). These results indicate that more complex gestures that require greater accuracy (dragging task) or rapid movements (double tapping) are related to hand strength and manual dexterity. These results suggest that the manual gestures necessary for touchscreen operation entail unique and specific capabilities that are generally not captured by traditional tools. The clinical implication is that the hand function assessment toolbox should be expanded. Tools such as the TATOO should be used to capture skills required for touchscreen manipulation in the context of the modern digital milieu. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Aging)
Article
Delayed Discharge for Non-Clinical Reasons in Hip Procedures: Differential Characteristics and Opportunity Cost
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9407; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179407 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 650
Abstract
Delayed discharge for non-clinical reasons shares common characteristics with hip procedures. We sought to quantify the length of stay and related costs of hip procedures and compare these with other cases of delayed discharge. A cross-sectional study was conducted at a public hospital [...] Read more.
Delayed discharge for non-clinical reasons shares common characteristics with hip procedures. We sought to quantify the length of stay and related costs of hip procedures and compare these with other cases of delayed discharge. A cross-sectional study was conducted at a public hospital in Spain (2007–2015) including 306 patients with 6945 days of total stay and 2178 days of prolonged stay. The mean appropriate stay was 15.58 days, and the mean prolonged stay was 7.12 days. The cost of a prolonged stay was €641,002.09. The opportunity cost according to the value of the hospital complexity unit was €922,997.82. The mean diagnostic-related groups’ weight was 3.40. Up to 85.29% of patients resided in an urban area near the hospital (p = 0.001), and 83.33% were referred to a long-stay facility for functional recovery (p = 0.001). The proportion of patients with hip procedures and delayed discharge was lower than previous reports; however, their length of stay was longer. The cost of prolonged stay could account for 21.17% of the total. Compared with the remaining cases of delayed discharge, the appropriate stay was shorter in hip procedures, with a profile of older women living in an urban area close to the hospital and referred to a long-stay center for functional recovery. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nursing Research)
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Article
Association of Visual Display Terminal Usage with Self-Rated Health and Psychological Distress among Japanese Office Workers during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9406; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179406 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 573
Abstract
The aim of this study was to examine the association of the duration of visual display terminal (VDT) usage for work and non-work activities with self-rated health (SRH) and psychological distress among office workers during the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan. A cross-sectional data [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to examine the association of the duration of visual display terminal (VDT) usage for work and non-work activities with self-rated health (SRH) and psychological distress among office workers during the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan. A cross-sectional data of 7088 office workers from a web-based, self-administered survey conducted from 25 August 2020, to 30 September 2020, was used. Multiple logistic regression analysis was applied. Compared to those who used a VDT for 4–9 h for work, office workers who used a VDT for ≥10 h for work had poor SRH (odds ratio (OR): 1.65; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.13, 2.41) and severe psychological distress (OR: 2.23; 95% CI: 1.52, 3.28). VDT usage for less than 1 h (OR: 1.37, 95% CI: 1.12, 1.67) and 1–3 h (OR: 1.42, 95% CI: 1.12, 1.80) for work were also associated with severe psychological distress. Stratification analysis by age showed a significant association of VDT usage for work with poor SRH among 30–64-year-olds, while a U-shape association was found between VDT usage for work and psychological distress with the younger age group (15–29 years old). During the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan, the prolonged usage of VDT for work can deteriorate both general and psychological health, while moderate usage of VDT for work can reduce psychological distress. Full article
Article
Adaptation and Psychometric Validation of the EMPOWER-SUSTAIN Usability Questionnaire (E-SUQ) among Patients with Metabolic Syndrome in Primary Care
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9405; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179405 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 569
Abstract
Self-management support is one of the most important components of the Chronic Care Model (CCM). The EMPOWER-SUSTAIN Global Cardiovascular Risks Self-Management Booklet© was developed for patients with Metabolic Syndrome (MetS), inspired by the CCM. Assessing usability of a self-management tool is important [...] Read more.
Self-management support is one of the most important components of the Chronic Care Model (CCM). The EMPOWER-SUSTAIN Global Cardiovascular Risks Self-Management Booklet© was developed for patients with Metabolic Syndrome (MetS), inspired by the CCM. Assessing usability of a self-management tool is important in chronic disease management. However, there was no available instrument to assess usability of a self-management booklet, as most instruments were developed to assess usability of mobile application. Therefore, this study aimed to adapt Skala Kebolehgunaan Aplikasi Mudah Alih (SKAMA) into the EMPOWER-SUSTAIN Usability Questionnaire (E-SUQ) and to determine its validity and reliability in assessing usability of a self-management booklet. A cross-sectional validation study was conducted among patients with MetS attending a university primary care clinic in Selangor, Malaysia. Content validation, adaptation and face validation of E-SUQ were performed according to recommended guidelines. It underwent two rounds of content validation as major revision was required for item 5. Subsequently, the revised E-SUQ was face-validated by 10 participants. Psychometric evaluation was conducted using principal component analysis with varimax rotation to determine the underlying structure of E-SUQ. Internal consistency reliability was assessed using Cronbach’s α coefficient and the test-retest reliability was assessed using intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC (2,k)). A total of 205 patients participated in the study. The item-level content-validity-index (I-CVI) for item 5 improved from 0.57 to 1.0 after the second round of content validation. The final S-CVI/Ave value for ESUQ was >0.90. The item-level face-validity-index (I-FVI) ranged between 0.9 and 1.0. Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin value of 0.871 and Bartlett’s test of sphericity p-value of <0.05 indicated good sample adequacy for factor analysis. Two factors with eigenvalues of >1 were extracted according to the Kaiser’s Criteria. The two extracted factors explained 60.6% of the cumulative percentage of variance. The elbow of the scree plot occurred between the second and third component, suggesting two factors to be retained. The two factors were consistent with “Positive” and “Negative” tone model. The overall Cronbach’s α coefficient was 0.77, indicating good internal reliability. The overall ICC was 0.85, indicating good reproducibility. The E-SUQ is shown to be valid, reliable and stable to measure the usability of a self-management booklet among patients with MetS in a university primary care clinic in Malaysia. Full article
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Article
SARS-CoV-2 RNA and Supermarket Surfaces: A Real or Presumed Threat?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9404; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179404 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 691
Abstract
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged in March 2020 in Italy, leading to the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) that continues to cause high global morbidity and mortality in human populations. Numerous studies have focused on the spread and persistence [...] Read more.
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged in March 2020 in Italy, leading to the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) that continues to cause high global morbidity and mortality in human populations. Numerous studies have focused on the spread and persistence of the virus in the hospital setting. New scientific evidence shows that SARS-CoV-2 is present in different community environments. Although aerosol is one of the main routes of transmission for SARS-CoV-2, indirect contact through virus-contaminated surfaces could also play a key role. The survival and persistence of SARS-CoV-2 on surfaces appear to be influenced by the characteristics of the material, temperature, and humidity. In this study, we investigated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA on surfaces in 20 supermarkets throughout the Apulia region during the lockdown period. We collected a total of 300 swab samples from various surfaces including supermarket scales, trolley handles, refrigerator and freezer handles, and keyboards. In total, 13 (4.3%) surfaces were positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA contamination, with shopping trolley handles being the most frequently contaminated. This study showed that contamination in public spaces can occur, so we remark the importance to adopt adequate preventive measures, including environment ventilation, careful surfaces sanitation, hand hygiene, and correct usage of masks, to reduce the likelihood of virus transmission. Full article
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Article
Psychometric Properties of the 34-Item Short-Form Supportive Care Need Survey (SCNS-SF34) Scale in the Malaysian Cancer Healthcare Context
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9403; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179403 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 478
Abstract
(1) Background: This study aimed to assess the psychometric properties of the Malay version of SCNS-SF34 among Malaysian cancer patients. (2) Methods: This cross-sectional study involved 171 cancer patients. Data were collected using the structured five-factor survey via telephone call or face-to-face interviews. [...] Read more.
(1) Background: This study aimed to assess the psychometric properties of the Malay version of SCNS-SF34 among Malaysian cancer patients. (2) Methods: This cross-sectional study involved 171 cancer patients. Data were collected using the structured five-factor survey via telephone call or face-to-face interviews. The internal reliability and the construct validity of SCNS-34M were analysed using principal component analysis with varimax rotation. (3) Results: The health system and information need (HSI) was the domain with the highest mean score (2.73 ± 0.88), followed by patient care and support needs (2.16 ± 0.90), as well as physical and daily living needs (1.99 ± 0.98). The confirmatory factor analysis indicated a moderate model fit for RMSEA with 0.070, TLI = 0.911 and CFI = 0.924. (4) Conclusions: The SCNS-SF34M was found to be a conceptually applicable and culturally appropriate scale in measuring the supportive care for cancer patients within the Malaysian context. Full article
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Article
Development of a Culturally Anchored Qualitative Approach to Conduct and Analyze Focus Group Narratives Collected in Diné (Navajo) Communities to Understand the Impacts of the Gold King Mine Spill of 2015
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9402; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179402 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 535
Abstract
The Gold King Mine Spill (Spill) occurred in August 2015 upstream from Silverton, Colorado and released three million gallons of contaminated water into the Animas River, a tributary to the San Juan River that flows across the Navajo Nation. Using principles of community-engaged [...] Read more.
The Gold King Mine Spill (Spill) occurred in August 2015 upstream from Silverton, Colorado and released three million gallons of contaminated water into the Animas River, a tributary to the San Juan River that flows across the Navajo Nation. Using principles of community-engaged research, the Gold King Mine Spill Diné Exposure Project co-developed a culturally anchored approach to conduct focus groups and analyze narratives collected in three Diné (Navajo) communities along the San Juan River within 9 months of the Spill. Focus group questions were designed to document the socio-cultural impacts of the Spill. This paper: (1) outlines the partnerships and approvals; (2) describes focus group design, training, data collection and analysis; and (3) reflects on the use of a culturally anchored approach in Indigenous, specifically Diné-centered research. Diné social and cultural etiquette and concepts of relationality were used to adapt standard (non-Indigenous) qualitative methods. Findings describe community perceptions of short-term impacts of the disaster, as well as past and present injustices, communication related to the Spill, and concerns of persistent threats to Diné lifeways. The culturally anchored approach was critical in fostering trust with Diné participants and aligned with the candor of the discussions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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Article
Predictive Strength of Contextual and Personal Variables in Soccer Players’ Goal Orientations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9401; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179401 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 520
Abstract
Psychological variables, such as perceived motivational climate, goal orientation, self-determined motivation, and personality, have an influence on sports success performance. This study aimed to examine the relationships among a set of psychological variables (perceived motivational climate, goal orientation, self-determined motivation, and personality) in [...] Read more.
Psychological variables, such as perceived motivational climate, goal orientation, self-determined motivation, and personality, have an influence on sports success performance. This study aimed to examine the relationships among a set of psychological variables (perceived motivational climate, goal orientation, self-determined motivation, and personality) in male and female footballers. Participants were 167 footballers (106 male, 61 female), aged 12 to 26, competing with clubs in the Spanish Football League. They all took four questionnaires aimed at evaluating motivational climate, goal orientations, self-determined motivation, and personality. The analyses of correlation and regression showed statistically significant relations among the variables. Neuroticism and psychoticism negatively relate to mastery motivational climate, the best predictor of self-determined motivation. It was concluded that contextual variables carry more weight in predicting goal orientations and self-determined motivation among participant footballers. Full article
Article
Heterogeneity of Modern Contraceptive Use among Urban Slum and Nonslum Women in Kinshasa, DR Congo: Cross-Sectional Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9400; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179400 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 640
Abstract
Urban populations have been increasing at an alarming rate, with faster growth in urban slums than that in nonslums over the past few decades. We examine the association between slum residence and the prevalence of contraceptive use among women of reproductive age, and [...] Read more.
Urban populations have been increasing at an alarming rate, with faster growth in urban slums than that in nonslums over the past few decades. We examine the association between slum residence and the prevalence of contraceptive use among women of reproductive age, and assess if the effect was modified by household wealth. We conducted cross-sectional analysis comprising 1932 women in slums and 632 women in nonslums. We analyzed the moderating effect through an interaction between household wealth and neighborhood type, and then conducted stratified multivariable logistic-regression analysis by the type of neighborhood. Fewer women living in nonslum neighborhoods used modern methods compared to those living in slum neighborhoods. Within slum neighborhoods, the odds of using modern contraceptive methods were higher among women visited by community health workers than among those who had not been visited. Parity was one of the strong predictors of modern contraceptive use. Within nonslum neighborhoods, women from the wealthiest households were more likely to use modern contraceptives than those from the poorest households. Household wealth moderated the association between the type of neighborhood and modern contraceptive use. The study findings suggested heterogeneity in modern contraceptive use in Kinshasa, with a surprisingly higher contraceptive prevalence in slums. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Women's Health)
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Article
Childhood Socioeconomic Position, Adult Educational Attainment and Health Behaviors: The Role of Psychological Capital and Health Literacy
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9399; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179399 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 480
Abstract
Socioeconomic circumstances during childhood and adulthood are known to negatively affect health promoting behaviors. On the other hand, psychological capital (PsyCap) and health literacy are positively associated with these lifestyle behaviors. We, therefore, reasoned that PsyCap and health literacy might “buffer” the negative [...] Read more.
Socioeconomic circumstances during childhood and adulthood are known to negatively affect health promoting behaviors. On the other hand, psychological capital (PsyCap) and health literacy are positively associated with these lifestyle behaviors. We, therefore, reasoned that PsyCap and health literacy might “buffer” the negative influences of socioeconomic circumstances on health-promoting behaviors. Method: We measured subjective childhood socioeconomic position (SEP) and adult educational attainment (as a proxy for adult socioeconomic circumstances), health literacy, PsyCap, and health behaviors (fruits and vegetables consumption, exercise, and sweets and cookies consumption) in a sample of N = 150 individuals (mean age 34.98 years, 66.7% female). Results: Bootstrapped mediation analyses including PsyCap and health literacy as parallel mediators revealed that: (I) The relationship between childhood SEP and (a) fruits and vegetables consumption and (b) exercise was mediated by PsyCap, and (II) the relationship between adult educational attainment and (a) fruits and vegetables consumption and (b) exercise was mediated by PsyCap and health literacy. We found no significant effects for consumption of sweets and cookies. Conclusion: These results suggest that larger studies are warranted that confirm the potential of PsyCap and health literacy in mitigating the negative effects of lower SEP on health behaviors and health outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Maternal, Newborn, Child and Family Health: Past, Present, and Future)
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Article
Loneliness in Old Age, the Related Factors, and Its Association with Demographics and Districts of Residence
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9398; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179398 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 444
Abstract
Loneliness among older people has now become a serious public health issue. There have been few previous studies conducted among Chinese populations on the correlations between loneliness, self-rated health, and instrumental activities of daily living (IADL), and their association with demographic characteristics. In [...] Read more.
Loneliness among older people has now become a serious public health issue. There have been few previous studies conducted among Chinese populations on the correlations between loneliness, self-rated health, and instrumental activities of daily living (IADL), and their association with demographic characteristics. In this study, data were collected using quota sampling through survey interviews. Older people living in representative districts were recruited. Of the participants, 60.1% rated their health as average and 58.1% showed a high level of loneliness. IADL and self-rated health (SRH) were found to be moderately positively correlated, with r = 0.357, p < 0.001. A low negative correlation was found between the level of loneliness and IADL, with r = −0.276; and SRH, with r = −0.288, p < 0.05. Ordinal Regression results showed that subjects with higher IADL scores (OR: 0.64, 95% CI: 0.39–1.05) were less lonely, while those with a less desirable economic status (OR: 3.34, 95% CI: 1.40–7.96) and living in the central business district were more likely to have a higher loneliness score (OR: 21.33, 95% CI: 4.81–95.41). It is essential to screen for loneliness, and interventions should be focused on improving social connections and support for older people to overcome their feelings of loneliness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Aging)
Article
Socioeconomic Inequalities in Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Sero-Prevalence among Women in Namibia: Further Analysis of Population-Based Data
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9397; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179397 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 549
Abstract
Socioeconomic inequality is a major factor to consider in the prevention of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission. The aim of this study was to investigate socioeconomic inequalities in HIV prevalence among Namibian women. Data from a population-based household survey with multistage-stratified sample of [...] Read more.
Socioeconomic inequality is a major factor to consider in the prevention of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission. The aim of this study was to investigate socioeconomic inequalities in HIV prevalence among Namibian women. Data from a population-based household survey with multistage-stratified sample of 6501 women were used to examine the link between socioeconomic inequalities and HIV prevalence. The weighted HIV prevalence was 13.2% (95% CI: 12.1–14.3%). The HIV prevalence among the poorest, poorer, middle, richer, and richest households was 21.4%, 19.7%, 16.3%, 11.0%, and 3.7%, respectively. Similarly, 21.2%, 21.7%, 11.8%, and 2.1% HIV prevalence was estimated among women with no formal education and primary, secondary, and higher education, respectively. Women from poor households (Conc. Index = −0.258; SE = 0.017) and those with no formal education (Conc. Index = −0.199; SE = 0.015) had high concentration of HIV infection, respectively. In light of these findings, HIV prevention strategies must be tailored to the specific drivers of transmission in low socioeconomic groups, with special attention paid to the vulnerabilities faced by women and the dynamic and contextual nature of the relationship between socioeconomic status and HIV infection. Full article
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Article
Worldwide Research Trends on Solar-Driven Water Disinfection
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9396; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179396 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 501
Abstract
“Ensure access to water for all”, states Goal 6 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. This worldwide challenge requires identifying the best water disinfection method for each scenario. Traditional methods have limitations, which include low effectiveness towards certain pathogens and the formation of [...] Read more.
“Ensure access to water for all”, states Goal 6 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. This worldwide challenge requires identifying the best water disinfection method for each scenario. Traditional methods have limitations, which include low effectiveness towards certain pathogens and the formation of disinfection byproducts. Solar-driven methods, such as solar water disinfection (SODIS) or solar photocatalysis, are novel, effective, and financially and environmentally sustainable alternatives. We have conducted a critical study of publications in the field of water disinfection using solar energy and, hereby, present the first bibliometric analysis of scientific literature from Elsevier’s Scopus database within the last 20 years. Results show that in this area of growing interest USA, Spain, and China are the most productive countries in terms of publishing, yet Europe hosts the most highly recognized research groups, i.e., Spain, Switzerland, Ireland, and UK. We have also reviewed the journals in which researchers mostly publish and, using a systematic approach to determine the actual research trends and gaps, we have analyzed the capacity of these publications to answer key research questions, pinpointing six clusters of keywords in relation to the main research challenges, open areas, and new applications that lie ahead. Most publications focused on SODIS and photocatalytic nanomaterials, while a limited number focused on ensuring adequate water disinfection levels, testing regulated microbial indicators and emerging pathogens, and real-world applications, which include complex matrices, large scale processes, and exhaustive cost evaluation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Article
Review and Improvement of Chemical Hazard Risk Management of Korean Occupational Safety and Health Agency
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9395; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179395 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 465
Abstract
In 2012, the Korean Occupational Safety and Health Agency developed Chemical Hazard Risk Management (CHARM) as a risk assessment tool. This study aims to reorganize the CHARM technique by complementing its logical loopholes, while evaluating the risk to enterprises and verifying this technique [...] Read more.
In 2012, the Korean Occupational Safety and Health Agency developed Chemical Hazard Risk Management (CHARM) as a risk assessment tool. This study aims to reorganize the CHARM technique by complementing its logical loopholes, while evaluating the risk to enterprises and verifying this technique by applying it to some enterprises in Korea. The optimized technique changed the method of quantitative assessment and evaluation criteria, matched the risk level with the required control level, and specified the use of control practice. For the target enterprises, for several assessment methods, risk levels, hazard bands, exposure bands, and the risk assessment results were derived, and the same types of options were compared. Fewer informational methods resulted in more conservative results of risk levels and hazard bands. Since the control status of the enterprises could not be confirmed and the substances handled at the target enterprises were limited in this study, a follow-up study should be performed with more target materials and additional information on the current control status of the enterprises. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Health Risk Assessment)
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Article
Influence of Depression and Anxiety on Non-Surgical Periodontal Treatment Outcomes: A 6-Month Prospective Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 9394; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18179394 - 06 Sep 2021
Viewed by 550
Abstract
Periodontal treatment could be worsened by risk factors. Depression and anxiety have been suggested as potentially influencing periodontal treatment outcomes. The aim of this study was to determine their association with non-surgical periodontal treatment outcomes in patients with generalized severe periodontitis (stage III/IV [...] Read more.
Periodontal treatment could be worsened by risk factors. Depression and anxiety have been suggested as potentially influencing periodontal treatment outcomes. The aim of this study was to determine their association with non-surgical periodontal treatment outcomes in patients with generalized severe periodontitis (stage III/IV generalized periodontitis) at 6 months. A total of 68 patients diagnosed with generalized severe periodontitis were treated with scaling and root planing (SRP) and were followed at 3 and 6 months. The data of the 54 patients that followed the entire protocol were considered for analysis. Depression and anxiety levels were determined at baseline by the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and State-Trait Inventory (STAI) questionnaires. The association between psychological scores and periodontal parameters was evaluated by multivariate analysis. At 3 and 6 months, SRP induced an improvement for all periodontal parameters (plaque index (PI), bleeding on probing (BOP), periodontal probing depth (PPD) and clinical attachment loss (CAL)). BDI and STAI scores were associated with the evolution of PI, BOP, mean PPD and number of sites with PPD > 3 mm and with CAL > 3 mm. Depression and anxiety should be considered as risk factors for SRP and the identification of at-risk patients should be performed using well-established tools. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Influence of Risk Factors on Periodontitis and Periodontal Treatment)
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