Health Sciences Capstone Projects

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A Close look at Teenage Pregnancy and its Intervention Strategies in Sierra Leone

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015
Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Erikson, Susan

Corporate Social Responsibility: Understanding Its Relationship To Public Health

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015
Abstract: 

 

Social, environmental, and health issues are deeply rooted, complex, and multi-faceted and no one organization, discipline, sector, or nation can address or solve them on their own. Public health and its issues tend to be thought of the domain of the public sector, with input from academia and the third sector with the private sector’s involvement limited to health-specific industries or philanthropy. However, the private sector is becoming increasingly involved in social, environmental and health issues, particularly via corporate social responsibility (CSR). Due to the immense resources of the private sector as well as its undeniable social, political, and economic power, CSR has the potential to help make a positive impact on which ever social issue, and thus public health issue, it focuses on. A literature review of CSR evolution, theories, concepts and applications was done in order to understand how CSR is conceptualized and practiced in different sectors and in the academic world versus the real world. Yet, despite the fact that CSR has so much potential for impact and has become a normative term and expected practice, it remains conceptually ambiguous between disciplines, sectors, nations, theory, and practice. The literature review analysis resulted inin three areas for further research: 1)conceptual clarity, 2) improved CSR standardization and/or measurement, and 3) just how involved in social, environmental and health issues should the private sector (via CSR) be and what are the implications and impact of this involvement?

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Berry, Nicole

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in South Asia Addressing Current Gaps in AMR Surveillance and Monitoring

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-05
Abstract: 

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global health security threat and the reliability of surveillance systems that provide accurate information is crucial. Through the use of quantitative and qualitative methodologies, the surveillance and monitoring process can provide a diagnosis of AMR within under-resourced settings in South Asia. A literature review within a scoping/narrative structure was conducted for this capstone in order to illustrate current deficiencies in AMR surveillance and monitoring for select countries in the South Asian region. This capstone project embraces the perspective that AMR surveillance is the first and most crucial step in illustrating the current burden and impact of this issue and informing change-inducing policies and interventions. The project is a global call to action on AMR surveillance in the developing world. It was found that there is a general lack of systematic data collection regarding AMR in the region, rendering it a neglected problem within many countries. The emergence of AMR in developing nations in South Asia is a symptom of substandard surveillance practices. Pathogens that are problematic in terms of resistance are not well represented through surveillance information. Resource-related constraints and sociocultural attitudes are also problematic in terms of antibiotic use. Antibiotic misuse/overuse are important determinants as they can create environmental pressure that causes resistant strains to emerge in both humans and animals. It is often difficult to measure AMR burden in developing countries, due to biases in reporting, testing methodologies, defective legislative practices, etc. The development of a global surveillance system that overarches local systems and increases coordination, cohesion, and comprehensiveness is recommended. The ultimate goal is to supplement the creation of a global strategy to mitigate AMR through the development of stronger surveillance systemsand collaborative networksaroundthe world. These approaches should aid with the creation of time-oriented, realistic, and visible change. The WHO report, in conjunction with this capstone project, is an important first step in highlighting the magnitude of the problem and moving towards addressing the visible gaps in AMR surveillance in South Asia and other resource-limited settings. The lack of evidence should fuel further examination of this issue and increased discussion within global health policy and practice.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Berry, Nicole

The Challenges and Benefits of Volunteerism in a Non-profit Health Promotion Organization Supporting Chronic Disease Prevention in Multicultural Communities

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-05
Abstract: 

The purpose of this study is to provide insight into the management of the interCultural OnlineHealth Network (iCON) project’s volunteers, exploring the mutual benefits and challenges to both the nonprofit organization and the volunteers. As the benefits and challenges of volunteerism are ‘the other side of the coin’, organizations will benefit when they overcome the challenges of managing volunteers and are motivated to address volunteers’ expectations. This study employed Survey Monkey, with the sample drawn from the roster of recent iCON volunteers, an email was sent requesting completion of the survey instrument comprised of Likert scaled, open-ended, and semi-open ended questions to more than 60 volunteers, with 17 participants responding to the survey. Analysis of the results reveals that most volunteers participated in iCON’s one day events, yet would prefer longer, more regular hours. A majority of participants expressed a preference for more training/orientation prior to beginning volunteering and more frequent communication with other volunteers. Participants are also interested in developing their presentation, organization, and leadership skills while working withiCON. Respondents further indicated that iCON currently provides adequate acknowledgement to volunteers. For the majority of respondents the availability of resources, including iCON’smanagement and fulfilment of volunteers’ expectations, is found to be excellent with the few exceptions providing guidance for ongoing improvement.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Steinberg, Malcolm

Atopic Disease Prevention — A Research Schema for Evaluating Skin Barrier Protection and Phthalate Exposure Reduction

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-12-16
Abstract: 

Rationale

Globally, the prevalence of atopic diseases continues to rise. Up to 20% of the population is thought to be affected, exerting enormous health, social and financial burdens. Emerging data suggests atopic dermatitis precedes allergic sensitization and may increase the predisposition to food allergy, allergic rhinitis and asthma later in life. Pilot testing has suggested infant skin barrier protection may reduce the risk of atopic dermatitis. Parallel research has suggested exposure to phthalates may be driving the inflammatory process at the dermal level.

 

Methods

The altered skin barrier and hapten-atopy hypotheses are summarized. A schema for a pragmatically designed, randomized controlled trial is developed to address: 1.Does skin barrier protection using an occlusive moisturizer and measures to reduce phthalate exposure among infants reduce the incidence of atopic dermatitis and the prevalence of atopic diseases, and 2.If so, do these interventions reduce risk in an additive or synergistic manner?

 

Results

Population based recruitment of newborn infants to one of three interventions or a control arm is proposed. The first arm would involve the application of an occlusive skin moisturizer to protect skin barrier integrity; the second, measures to reduce dietary and environmental phthalate exposures and the third would add skin barrier protection to the phthalate exposure reduction protocol. The protocol phase would ideally continue for three years, while the observation phase for the detection of disease incidence and prevalence would span 18 years. Recommendations for data interpretation include regression analysis for modeling the intervention effects on other environmental and dietary exposures thought to increase the risk of atopic diseases.

 

Conclusions

Pragmatic design would optimize the generalizability of the results. Study findings would clarify public health approaches for atopic disease prevention by broadening the current understanding of the effects of phthalates on child health and by informing best practices for infant skin care.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Tim Takaro

Evaluability Assessment: Developing a Process to Determine if a Program is Ready and Able to be Evaluated

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014-06-01
Abstract: 

The Interior Health evaluation team identified the need to formalize evaluability assessment as part of their evaluation process. Evaluability assessment provides a mechanism to determine evaluability and provides a formalized deliverable that would facilitate discussions with stakeholders on the steps necessary to prepare the project for program evaluation. In this paper, I have provided the necessary background information on evaluability assessment and customized a formal yet flexible evaluability assessment process and tool for use by Interior Health. This process and tool will help the evaluation team to assess if an evaluation would be appropriate, practical, and useful.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
Senior supervisor: 
Bruce Lanphear

Cambodia Health System Review: The Current Policies and Strategies of the Health System’s Governance, Financing, and Service Delivery

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-04-16
Abstract: 

Cambodia’s health system is in a period of transition as policy innovation and reform began in 1996. Importantly, the Ministry of Health (MoH) and donor agencies have undergone a series of policy shifts in an attempt to strengthen the health system in order to provide equitable access to health care for the population. This paper will describe the health system’s governance, financing and service delivery functions in regards to their current situation and recent innovations that aim to improve equitable access to services for the population.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 

Cambodia Health System Review: The Current Policies and Strategies of the Health System’s Governance, Financing, and Service Delivery

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-04-16
Abstract: 

Cambodia’s health system is in a period of transition as policy innovation and reform began in 1996. Importantly, the Ministry of Health (MoH) and donor agencies have undergone a series of policy shifts in an attempt to strengthen the health system in order to provide equitable access to health care for the population. This paper will describe the health system’s governance, financing and service delivery functions in regards to their current situation and recent innovations that aim to improve equitable access to services for the population.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 

End-­‐of-­‐life care beliefs values, practices and support needs of Chinese women living in the UK: A Cultural Safety approach

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-01
Abstract: 

End-of-life care requires attention to mental health, religious practices and beliefs, and health care systems and supports to help individuals cope with the process of aging, coming to terms with death and dying and to help family members and loved ones cope with bereavement. To date, there is limited research examining end of life care and the needs of Chinese people in the UK. Understanding end-of-life care expectations in relation to this population is important for informing the development of new health policy and service initiatives, given that there are currently over 1 million Chinese people living in the UK. The purpose of this study is to explore the mental health, religious practices and beliefs, and services and support systems required by this community to cope with end-of-life and bereavement. In July 2011, Wai Yin Chinese Women’s Society in Manchester, UK conducted fourteen semi-structured in-depth interviews with a group of Chinese migrants (primarily women working within the margins of UK’s formal economy) to explore end-of-life care issues. The current study performed a secondary analysis of these transcripts focusing only on the stories of the eleven Chinese women. The women participants were recruited as a part of Wai Yin’s Sunshine Project, which aimed to assist Chinese migrants in improving their knowledge and understandings of their employment and immigration rights (in the UK) and to help them learn the English language. Main findings are presented in eleven broad-based themes: acculturation, culturally specific services, death and dying, Eastern practices and beliefs, gendered effects, health and health care, hereafter, language and communication, obligations versus duties and responsibilities, personal choices, and Western practices and beliefs.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Malcoe, Lorraine Halinka