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28 September 2020, Issue 16 - Allergic Rhinitis; Australian Journal of General Practice; Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand

Protect against measles. Be a guardian of the future

If you’re aged 15 to 30 you may not be protected against measles. Measles is a serious disease that can make you very sick.
HPA-Guardians of the Future campaign

Articles – Hayfever/Allergic Rhinitis

1. Nothing to sneeze at: Here's how to prepare for the coming allergy season.
Harvard Men's Health Watch, Apr 2019, 23(9), 4-5

The article discusses some important issues to consider when preparing for the allergy season. Tree, grass, and ragweed pollen are considered the culprits for spring and summer allergies.

2. Neuroinflammatory Gene Expression Pattern Is Similar between Allergic Rhinitis and Atopic Dermatitis but Distinct from Atopic Asthma.
Sobkowiak, Paulina; Langwiński, Wojciech; Nowakowska, Joanna; Wojsyk-Banaszak, Irena; Szczepankiewicz, Dawid; Jenerowicz, Dorota; Wasilewska, Eliza; Bręborowicz, Anna & Szczepankiewicz, Aleksandra
BioMed Research International, 6/11/2020, 1-10

Neurogenic inflammation underlies the pathogenesis of allergic diseases. Interactions between neurons with the immune cells and structural cells (airway epithelium, nasal mucosa, skin keratinocytes) undergo altered regulation during chronic inflammation.

3. Topical Ectoine: A Promising Molecule in the Upper Airways Inflammation—A Systematic Review.
Casale, Manuele; Moffa, Antonio; Carbone, Samanta; Fraccaroli, Francesca; Costantino, Andrea; Sabatino, Lorenzo; Lopez, Michele Antonio; Baptista, Peter; Cassano, Michele & Rinaldi, Vittorio;
BioMed Research International, 8/26/2019, 1-10

To date, topical therapies guarantee a better delivery of high concentrations of pharmacologic agents to the mucosa of the upper airways (UA). Recently, topical administration of ectoine has just been recognized as adjuvant treatment in the Allergic Rhinitis (AR) and Rhinosinusitis (ARS).

4. Management of allergic rhinitis in the community pharmacy: identifying the reasons behind medication self-selection.
Tan, Rachel; Cvetkovski, Biljana; Kritikos, Vicky; Yan, Kwok; Price, David; Smith, Peter; Bosnic-Anticevich, Sinthia
Pharmacy Practice, Jul-Sep 2018, 16(3), 1-8

This study aimed to compare the demographics, clinical characteristics and medication selected, between pharmacy customers who choose to self-select and those who speak with a pharmacist when purchasing medication for their AR in a community pharmacy and identify factors associated with AR patients' medication(s) self-selection behaviour.

Articles – Australian Journal of General Practice, Aug 2020

5. Absolute cardiovascular disease risk and the use of the Australian cardiovascular disease risk calculator
Nelson, Mark
Australian Journal of General Practice, Aug 2020, 49(8), 471- 473
: Primary prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been traditionally guided by individual risk factors such hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia. An absolute risk-based approach is more effective. The aim of this article is to outline the superiority of an absolute risk-based approach when compared with individual risk factor management for the primary prevention of CVD, and to elaborate on the derivation and use of the Australian absolute CVD risk calculator.

6. Exercise as cardiovascular medicine
Garrahy, Edward Davison, Kade Hardcastle, Sibella O'Brien, Jane Pedersen, Scott Williams, Andrew & Radford, Jan
Australian Journal of General Practice, Aug 2020, 49(8), 483-487
: Physical inactivity is a major modifiable contributor to the global burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) morbidity and mortality. In this article, a clinical case study is used to provide practical approaches for general practitioners and their teams to individualise exercise prescriptions for patients with hypertension who are at risk of CVD. The case presented describes a sedentary, overweight male with newly diagnosed hypertension - a common scenario in general practice.

7. Screening for primary aldosteronism: 'How to adjust existing antihypertensive medications to avoid diagnostic errors'
Gurgenci, Taylan., Geraghty, Sam., Wolley, Martin & Yang, Jun
Australian Journal of General Practice, Mar 2020, 49(3), 127-131

Abstract: Screening for primary aldosteronism is infrequently performed in primary care. This is partly because screening is complicated by the need to adjust existing antihypertensive medications. This article provides an approach to screening patients who are already taking antihypertensive medication. The objective of this article is to describe how to alter antihypertensive medications to allow accurate screening for primary aldosteronism.

Articles – Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020

8.  Editorial: Going forward, going back: Covid pandemic where to from here?
Briggs, David S; Isouard, Godfrey
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 3-6

Despite those who are unaware of or are currently challenging the importance of history, there is a strong case for us to be aware of the history of pandemics and how they were all overcome. The concept of both looking forward and looking back is a powerful metaphor to describe what should be a sensible discussion and consideration of where we might be going.

9. Intrinsic cultural factors that helped Vietnam overcome the Covid-19 pandemic compared with other countries
Pham, Ngoc Cindy; Li, Yuanqing; Schapsis, Claudio; Hossain, Tofazzal; Pham, Huan Henry; Fischer, Dov & Yang, Jun
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 7-12

The implementation of strict quarantine measures in Vietnam has kept a large number of people in isolation and has eventually put the disease under control. Analyzing the World Health Organization (WHO) data, we could see a clear difference in the reported numbers between Vietnam, a developing country, and the USA, one of the leading developed countries in the western hemisphere.

10. Understanding COVID-19 dispersion in the filipino sociocultural context
Garcia, Laurence Lascuna; Castillo, Joana Mariz; Bejoc, Jillian; Redula, Ernyl Henry; Lapa, Ma. Mayla Imelda & Palompon, Daisy
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 13-17

This study aims to discover the sociocultural factors affecting the disease dispersion pattern of the COVID-19 in the Philippines. Data was taken from the official reports of the Philippine Department of Health as of March 13, 2020, on the 52 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.

11. The roles of village health volunteers: COVID-19 prevention and control in Thailand
Tejativaddhana, Phudit; Suriyawongpaisal, Wichukorn; Kasemsup, Vijj & Suksaroj, Thunwadee
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 18-22

Thailand has effectively responded to the COVID-19 pandemic with effective focus on primary healthcare and multi-sectoral collaboration with effective and open communication of powerful health messages. This article reviewed the central role of village health volunteers and their significant contribution to the disease control.

12. Health information: Applications and challenges in the COVID-19 pandemic
Lloyd, Sheree; Walker, Sue M & Goswami, Ani
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 23-28

This commentary aims to explore how health information has been used to inform the public, manage risk, understand capacity, prepare the health system and to plan public health strategy

13. COVID-19: Perspectives from the experience of one Australian Primary Health Network
Nankervis, Richard; Alexander, Heather; Briggs, David; Turner, Catherine; Martin, Amanda; Baillie, John & Rigby, Kevin.
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 29-38

This article presents an analysis of management practice to describe the experience of one Primary Health Network (PHN) and its approach and response to the pandemic within its geographical region in accordance with Federal government directives.

14. COVID-19 - a tale of two cities: Seattle and vancouver
Fong, Ben YF & Law, Vincent TS
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 39-44

It is interesting to review how things were happening in North America where the United States has been hard hit by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), scoring over two million confirmed cases and about 120 thousand deaths at the top of the list of the world. Canada ranked eighteenth with about 100 thousand cases and just about 8 thousand deaths. Both the cases and deaths per capita are lower in Canada, which shares the same border and similar culture with the United States.

15. A qualitative study on mental distress of Vietnamese students in the U.S.A. in the COVID 19 era Asia Pacific
Pham, Ngoc Cindy & Shi, Juehui Richard
Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 45-57

This paper aims to examine how the COVID-19 pandemic affects the mental distress of the Vietnamese students in the USA. We explore different root causes of mental distress among international students who are away from their home country, their loved ones, and being isolated from school and community due to this outbreak.

16. Understanding mental health services and help-seeking behaviours among college students in Vietnam
Pham, Ngoc; Li, Yuanqing; Hossain, Tofazzal; Schapsis, Claudio; Pham, Huan Henry & Minor, Michael.
Asia Pacific Journal of Health Management, Aug 2020, 15(3), 58-71

Mental health is a significant topic, especially in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. While there is higher prevalence, there is less attention, to mental health problems among Asian college students, so the authors decided to investigate the effectiveness and efficiency of mental health services and help-seeking behaviors in Vietnamese universities.

Articles – Nursing Praxis, 2020

17. Reflections on #COVID19nz: Older people and age-friendly nursing.
Neville, Stephen
Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, 2020, 36(2), 4-6

The author reaffirms the contribution nursing makes to the health of older people living in Aotearoa, New Zealand amid the COVID-19 pandemic. He suggests that nurses take an age-friendly stance and broaden their repertoire from a health focus to include the social and environmental aspects influencing the wellbeing of older people. He also discusses the plight and misfortunes of older people living in residential care environments and the effects of COVID-19 on these groups.

18. Responding to the State of the World's Nursing 2020 report in Aotearoa New Zealand: Aligning the nursing workforce to universal health coverage and health equity
Chalmers, Linda
Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, 2020, 36(2), 7-19

Policy advice in the World Health Organization's State of the World's Nursing (SoWN) 2020 report emphasises investment in growing the nursing workforce to not only address a calculated shortfall of 5.9 million nurses internationally, but to augment domestic production of nurses in countries who are over-reliant on nurses trained overseas. Aotearoa New Zealand is one such country that is heavily reliant on internationally qualified nurses, with 27% of its total nursing workforce being migrants.

19. Humour: A purposeful and therapeutic tool in surgical nursing practice
van der Krogt, Shelley Rose; Coombs, Maureen & Rook, Helen
Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, 2020, 36(2), 20-30

Humour builds rapport and establishes relationships. However, nurses need to understand when the use of humour is appropriate, and how it can be beneficial in practice. A key driver for this study was the lack of evidence-based guidance about nurse humour use.

20. Patient experiences of pictogram use during nurse-led rapid-access chest pain clinic consultations in regional Aotearoa New Zealand.
Low, Tracy; Scott-Chapman, Sue & Forrest, Rachel
Nursing Praxis in Aotearoa New Zealand, 2020, 36(2), 31-40

Chest pain, which can be indicative of IHD, is subjective and obtaining a pain history can be difficult when verbal articulation is limited, delaying further investigations and treatment. This small, qualitative study aimed to explore whether the use of a nurse-developed pictogram during nurse-led rapid-access chest pain clinic consultations assisted patient communication.


21. Mental Health Toolkit Workshop
Learn how to identify, understand and respond to mental wellbeing in the workplace

Dates: Tuesday 20 October 2020 1:00pm and Tuesday 17 November 2020 1:00pm
Venue: CCS Disability Action, 17 Claudelands Rd, Hamilton, Waikato
Register & Buy tickets here:

22. The Developing Brain - Hamilton
Nathan Wallis, the host of the documentary “All in the Mind”, and co-host of the TV Series “The Secret life of Girls”, is coming to our community with his talk - The Developing Brain.
: Tuesday 13 October 2020 7:30pm – 9:00pm
Venue: Te Ao Mārama School, 33 Hare Puke Drive, Hamilton
Register & Buy tickets here:

News – National

23. New report on cultural safety and health equity for Māori
The Medical Council of New Zealand, in partnership with Te Ohu Rata O Aotearoa (Te ORA), has released an independent research report outlining findings on the current state of cultural safety and health equity delivered by doctors in Aotearoa New Zealand.
Access the report here:

24. Covid-19: Hundreds of endometriosis sufferers left languishing by lockdown delays
Stuff -  Sep 28 2020
An Auckland woman with endometriosis has been left in pain for months due to delays related to the Covid-19 pandemic. Ali Larsen, 37, is waiting for treatment and further investigations for her endometriosis that she says have been “bumped” multiple times this year.
Stuff - Hundreds of endometriosis sufferers left languishing

25. COVID-19: Government needs better way to help unemployed women – economists
Newshub - 27/09/2020
Economists predict women will be the hardest hit by COVID-19 related unemployment for years to come.
Ninety percent of those who lost jobs in the June quarter were women and it's sparking calls for the Government to find a better way to tackle female unemployment.
Newshub - Government needs better way to help unemployed women

26. 'Great to be alive': Man's warning about Legionnaires' disease
ODT – 18 September 2020
A self-proclaimed "normal Kiwi bloke" was left flat on his back and coughing up blood at one point as he battled the potentially fatal Legionnaires' disease. Ian Clayton, from Hastings, says it is ''great to be alive" after contracting the disease from potting mix.
ODT - Man's warning about Legionnaires' disease

News – International

27. This is what happens to your body over months in isolation
Since the pandemic officially began in March, we've been told staying home is the best way to avoid catching Covid-19. And it is. But life in confinement can cause physical ailments on its own. Being homebound for so long contorts the body, weakens the heart and lungs and even impairs brain function. The effects of life in isolation may stay with us beyond the pandemic's end (whenever that may be).
CNN - What isolation does to body wellness

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