The Reading of Journals by Biomedical Scientists in Relation to Evidence-Based Practice
Liikanen Eeva Kaarina, Ahonen Sanna-Mari
Int. J. Bio. Lab. Sci  2011  1:27-33 Abstract】 PDF

The aim of this study was to analyze Finnish biomedical scientists' (BS) reading of journals in relation to evidence-based practice (EBP). Sources of information, reading activities and related factors were examined. A web-based survey was sent to 925 BSs in three university hospital laboratories, producing a response rate of 36% (n = 337). The BSs read a total of thirty-six different scientific journals. Fifty four percent of the BSs did not read scientific journals at all. The BSs surveyed read more professional than scientific journals. The most important sources of information related to work were: reported practice in the workplace,; individual's own experience; knowledge acquired during degree-level education; instructions from clinical biochemists and/or laboratory doctors; and knowledge learnt from fellow employees. BSs with higher level education read all types of journal more often than BSs educated to diploma level. BSs who had participated in research projects were more likely to read journals. BSs who considered their knowledge to be "better" than others in their profession or who valued research read scientific journals more often than others. BSs who discussed research with their colleagues also read more scientific journals than those who did not discuss research. The findings highlight the importance of encouraging BSs to read scientific journals and making this possible both at work and in their free time.
Key words: vidence-based practice, journal, biomedical scientist, read

Students' Conceptions of Development Work as Promoting Professional Growth
Outi Mäkitalo, Annikki Savolainen, Eeva Liikanen, Riitta Lumme, Annikki Railio
Int. J. Bio. Lab. Sci  2011  1:21-26 Abstract】 PDF

The aim of this study is to evaluate how students experience development work in point-of-care testing (POCT) as part of a specialist e-learning course in POCT provided jointly by the Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS). Students were required to implement development in actual workplaces, and to publish their work as a journal article. Data for the study were collected from 20 students via an open enquiry circulated by e-mail and analysed using a phenomenographic approach.
The results show that development work provided a functional tool to achieve professional growth and new relationships within the workplace. The main challenges in the future are to create closer links between the UAS and the workplace to support learning and create new learning environments for students.
Key words: conception, development work, point-of-care testing, professional growth

The Effect of Alpha (+) -Thalassaemia on P. falciparum Malaria Parasitaemia in Children Attending Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital
K. Franklin, C. Opoku-Okrah, K. Obiri-Danso1, W.K.B.A. Owiredu, A. Annan
Int. J. Bio. Lab. Sci  2011  1:7-14 Abstract】 PDF

Malaria reportedly accounts for 10% of Africa's disease burden and about 90% of the global morbidity and mortality affecting mostly children under 5 years old. Previous studies have ex-pressed varied opinion on the protection from severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria by α+-thalassaemia. A random cross-sectional sampling of 456 children at the Komfo Anokye Teach-ing Hospital (KATH), Kumasi, Ghana were tested for malaria parasite, complete blood count (CBC), serum ferritin, and α-globin genotype. Alpha (+)-thalassaemic children recorded a sig-nificantly lower (28,705/μL) mean parasite density (MPD) compared to non-α-thalassaemic chil-dren (35,483/μL) (p<0.0001). The homozygotes, α+-thalassaemia, recorded a significantly lower (691/μL) MPD compared to 26,350/μL for the heterozygotes and 35,483/μL for the non-α-thalassaemic children (p = 0.0001). Alpha (+)-thalassaemia was hypothesized to protect against malaria via a reduction in the parasite density. The homozygous α+-thalassaemias were more protective than the heterozygous. Microcytic hypochromic anaemia was found in 141 (59%) of the subjects of which 71 were α+-thalassaemia. Alpha (+)-thalassaemia was shown to be a possi-bly key contributor to microcytic hypochromic anaemia amongst cases that were suspected of iron deficiency. Suspected iron deficiency cases should therefore be screened for α-thalassaemia to avoid the unnecessary administration of iron supplement.
Key words: alpha+thalassaemia, malaria, RBC, microcytosis, Ghana

Survey of External Quality Assessment Scheme for Blood Bank Laboratories in Taiwan
Chuan-Liang Kao, Yang-Yang Huang, Whay-Sue Lin, Lei-Fa Chang, Dong-Tsamn Lin
Int. J. Bio. Lab. Sci  2011  1:15-20 Abstract】 PDF

To evaluate the competences of medical laboratories of blood banks in Taiwan, the long term survey of External Quality Assessment Scheme (EQAS) on blood bank laboratories from 1998 to 2005 in Taiwan were performed and analyzed. The participation in EQAS was not mandatory, so the proficiency samples were only delivered to the laboratories that agreed to participate in the scheme. All the participants were requested to perform the testing with routine protocol. The items of proficiency tests were composed of ABO grouping, RhD typing, antibody screening and identification as an option. Correct rates of different test items, varied scales of laboratories and test methods were compared. The results indicated the correct rates of ABO grouping range from 93.9% to 100 %, and 98.7% as an average. As for RhD typing, it ranged from 90.6% to 100%, average rate was 97.5%. Average correct rate of antibody screening and antibody identification were 88.6% and 97.1% respectively. The use of multiple methods for antibody screening achieved higher correct rates than using single method only. The error rate of antibody screening in the district hospitals and in the private laboratories was higher than in the medical centers and in the regional hospitals. The blood bank performance in Taiwan has achieved high competence by using EQAS and the laboratories can keep continuous quality improvement in blood transfusion service. For equivocal samples, blood bank laboratories are recommended to use more than one method for antibody screening to elevate their correct rates. EQAS is beneficial for quality control of blood bank laboratories and the continuous improvement of their competences.
Key words: ABO grouping, antibody screening, antibody identification, EQAS

New Approach to In-Service Training of Laboratory Professionals in Sub-Saharan Africa
Francesco Marinucci, Sandra Medina-Moreno, Matthew Wattleworth, Antonio Damiano Paterniti, Robert Redfield
Int. J. Bio. Lab. Sci  2011  1:1-6 Abstract】 PDF

A major concern in scaling-up health programs in Sub-Saharan Africa is the lack of quality laboratory services. This is mainly due to the limited availability of well-trained laboratory personnel in both technical and managerial areas. More effective in-service training can be achieved by including on-site and off-site training modules tailored to trainees' specific needs and background. The key step of the proposed approach is an action plan, to be implemented at site level, developed by each trainee during an off-site module. The on-site training module is based on the implementation of the action plan within a specific timeframe that is essential for transferring theoretical knowledge from individuals to practical skills at the laboratory level. Based on the level of implementation of the action plan and completion of objectives, a proficiency training certificate is then awarded. To improve the retention of knowledge among laboratory staff, and hence the quality of laboratory operations, it is crucial that this approach is ingrained into a broader strategy for human resource management at the facility level, including clear job descriptions, salary adjustment policies and professional development strategies.
Key words: in-service training, clinical laboratory, professional development, human resource management

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