Department of Environmental Health Sciences

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    Awareness and preparedness of human monkeypox outbreak among university student: Time to worry or one to ignore?
    (Elsevier Ltd, 2022-10) Jairoun, Ammar Abdulrahman; Al-Hemyari, Sabaa Saleh; Abdulla, Naseem Mohammed; El-Dahiyat, Faris; Shahwan, Moyad; Hassan, Nageeb; Jairoun, Obaida; Alyousef, Nuha Ghazi; Sharif, Safia; Jaber, Ammar Ali Saleh
    Background: The growing number of human monkeypox cases worldwide illustrates the importance of early detection, prevention, management and quick action from healthcare authorities. The WHO confirmed a hundred of Monkeypox cases worldwide and disclosed Monkdypox as a worldwide emergency situation Objectives: To assess the knowledge about human monkeypox’ source, signs/symptoms, transmission, prevention and treatment among Al Ain university students in the UAE. Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study aimed to assess Al Ain University students’ knowledge of Human Monkeypox. A validated questionnaire was distributed to students between lectures. The respondents’ knowledge of human Monkeypox was assessed by 21 questions that examined the participants’ knowledge of Monkeypox as follows: 5 items examined knowledge of the source, definition, and incubation time; 2items assessed the mechanism of transmission of human Monkeypox, 7 items assessed the signs and symptoms; 7 items assessed the preventative measures; and 6 items assessed the treatment modalities. A multivariate logistic regression model was used to identify the factors influencing respondents’ knowledge of human Monkeypox among university students. Results: A total of five hundred and fifty-eight (558) students participated in the study. The average knowledge score was 70.1%, with a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 68.9 − 71.3. Of the total participants, 111 (19.9%) had poor knowledge about human Monkeypox, 320 (57.3%) had moderate knowledge, and 127 (22.8%) had good knowledge. The results of the statistical modelling showed that Old age (OR 0.681; 95% CI 1.005–1.016), female gender (OR 1.26; 95% CI 0.813 –0.961), participants from medical colleges (OR 1.22; 95% CI 1.13 –1.32) having a history of human chickenpox infection (OR 2.6; 95% CI 2.3–2.9) and receiving information on human Monkeypox during education (OR 1.14; 95% CI 1.05–1.2) were strong determinants for good knowledge about human Monkeypox. Conclusion: knowledge of Monkeypox among the participants is relatively low, particularly regarding the epidemiology, symptoms and treatments. Therefore, increasing knowledge of Monkeypox will be key to enhancing the capacity to respond to human monkeypox cases and to relay pertinent data to a disease surveillance system. © 2022 The Author(s)
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    Hydro geo-sphere integrated hydrologic model in modeling of wide basins
    (Springer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH, 2022-08) Talebmorad, Hossein; Ostad-Ali-Askari, Kaveh
    Simulation of large basins (over 1000 km2) can have a significant impact on the planning of large-scale water resources management. However, due to the increasing volume of calculations and the increasing heterogeneity of the different parts of these basins, the simulation of these basins has always faced challenges. Also, in areas with severe withdrawal of water resources, the importance of simulating and having the ability to predict future changes in the area is twofold, while these severe withdrawals lead to more complicated issues and more difficulty in simulations. The aim of this study is to evaluate ability of hydro geo-sphere fully integrated hydrologic model in simulating a large basin area (Hamadan-Bahar) with a total area of 2456 km2 and in severe withdrawal from groundwater resources. In this study, fully integrated surface/subsurface flow modeling was performed using hydro geo-sphere model. Simultaneous solving of surface and groundwater flow equations in this model and also the calculation of actual evapotranspiration as a function of soil moisture in each unit of evaporation zone improves simulation of interdependent processes such as aquifer drainage and feeding, which is one of the most difficult issues in the modeling. To obtain the initial conditions, the model was performed in steady-state mode using 20-year average of rainfall data and withdrawal from the aquifer. Then, to implement the model in a non-steady state and evaluate its performance in daily stresses, the model was performed during the period of 1992–2005 and parameters were calibrated. Validation phase was performed during the period of 2006–2010, which indicated the acceptable ability of this model in hydrologic simulation of the study area. © 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG.
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    Development and Validation of a Tool to Improve Community Pharmacists’ Surveillance Role in the Safe Dispensing of Herbal Supplements
    (Frontiers Media S.A., 2022-07-04) Jairoun, Ammar Abdulrahman; Al Hemyari, Sabaa Saleh; Abdulla, Naseem Mohammed; Shahwan, Moyad; Jairoun, Maimona; Godman, Brian; El-Dahiyat, Faris; Kurdi, Amanj
    Background: There has been an appreciable increase in the use of herbal supplements, including immune boosters, during the current COVID-19 pandemic. However, there are concerns with falsified herbal supplements. Objectives: Developed a new questionnaire that can potentially help community pharmacists identify the extent of falsified herbal supplements. Methods: A 9-month cross sectional study was conducted among 500 community pharmacies across United Arab Emirates. A new 5-factor, 24-itmes scale was developed based on current labelling requirements across countries and piloted. This included seven items on identified uses and contraindication, seven items on hazard identification, four items on product identity, three items on packaging and product insert and three items on product handling and storage. The face and content validity of the scale was assessed via the content validity index (CVI). Its construct validity was tested using an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) via principally component analysis (PCA). The model was subsequently confirmed through partial confirmatory factor analysis (PCFA). Its reliability was assessed via test-retest reliability, internal consistency, item internal consistency (IIC), and intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs). Results: The CVI of the finalized questionnaire was 0.843. The Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin measure of sampling adequacy was 0.891, and Bartlett’s test of sphericity indicated significance (p-value < 0.001). Confirmation of the subsequent 5-domains was achieved through PCFA using maximum likelihood analysis with oblimin rotation. The PCFA obtained values was 0.962 for NFI, 0.977 for CFI, and 0.987 for the Tucker Lewis Index. All values were greater than 0.95, and the RMSEA value was 0.03 (i.e., less than 0.06). Consequently, the model had a good fit. All domains demonstrated Cronbach’s alpha coefficients above 0.70, with 0.940 for the full instrument. Meanwhile, all items met the IIC correlation standard of ≥0.40. The instrument presented good ICC statistics of 0.940 (0.928–0.950) as well as statistical significance (p < 0.001). Community pharmacists with more than 10 experience years were more likely to identify falsified herbal supplements compared to those with 1–10 years experience (p < 0.001). Conclusion: This study developed and validated a new instrument to identify safe herbal supplements, which should enhance the role of the community pharmacists in the safe and effective treatment of suitable patients with herbal supplements. Copyright © 2022 Jairoun, Al Hemyari, Abdulla, Shahwan, Jairoun, Godman, El-Dahiyat and Kurdi.
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    Identifying barriers and facilitators of translating research evidence into clinical practice: A systematic review of reviews
    (John Wiley and Sons Inc, 2022) Abu-Odah, Hammoda; Said, Nizar B.; Nair, Satish Chandrasekhar; Allsop, Matthew J.; Currow, David C.; Salah, Motasem Said; Hamad, Bassam Abu; Elessi, Khamis; Alkhatib, Ali; ElMokhallalati, Yousuf; Bayuo, Jonathan; AlKhaldi, Mohammed
    Translating research into clinical practice is a global priority because of its potential impact on health services delivery and outcomes. Despite the ever-increasing depth and breadth of health research, most areas across the globe seem to be slow to translate relevant research evidence into clinical practice. Thus, this review sought to synthesise existing literature to elucidate the barriers and facilitators to the translation of health research into clinical practice. A systematic review of reviews approach was utilised. Review studies were identified across PubMed, Scopus, Embase, CINAHL and Web of Science databases, from their inception to 15 March 2021. Searching was updated on 30 March 2022. All retrieved articles were screened by two authors; reviews meeting the inclusion criteria were retained. Based on the review type, two validated tools were employed to ascertain their quality: A Measurement Tool to Assess Systematic Reviews-2 and International Narrative Systematic assessment. The framework synthesis method was adopted to guide the analysis and narrative synthesis of data from selected articles. Ten reviews met the inclusion criteria. The study revealed that the translation of new evidence was limited predominantly by individual-level issues and less frequently by organisational factors. Inadequate knowledge and skills of individuals to conduct, organise, utilise and appraise research literature were the primary individual-level barriers. Limited access to research evidence and lack of equipment were the key organisational challenges. To circumvent these barriers, it is critical to establish collaborations and partnerships between policy makers and health professionals at all levels and stages of the research process. The study concluded that recognising barriers and facilitators could help set key priorities that aid in translating and integrating research evidence into practice. Effective stakeholder collaboration and co-operation should improve the translation of research findings into clinical practice. © 2022 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
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    Stakeholders’ Perception of the Palestinian Health Workforce Accreditation and Regulation System: A Focus on Conceptualization, Influencing Factors and Barriers, and the Way Forward
    (MDPI, 2022-07-01) Najjar, Shahenaz; Hafez, Sali; Al Basuoni, Aisha; Obaid, Hassan Abu; Mughnnamin, Ibrahim; Falana, Hiba; Sultan, Haya; Aljeesh, Yousef; Alkhaldi, Mohammed
    The Health Workforce Accreditation and Regulation (HWAR) is a key function of the health system and is the subject of increasing global attention. This study provides an assessment of the factors affecting the Palestinian HWAR system, identifies existing gaps and offers actionable improvement solutions. Data were collected during October and November 2019 in twenty-two semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with experts, academics, leaders, and policymakers purposely selected from government, academia, and non-governmental organizations. The overall perceptions towards HWAR were inconsistent. The absence of a consolidated HWAR system has led to a lack of communication between actors. Environmental factors also affect HWAR in Palestine. The study highlighted the consensus on addressing further development of HWAR and the subsequent advantages of this enhancement. The current HWAR practices were found to be based on personal initiatives rather than on a systematic evidence-based approach. The need to strengthen law enforcement was raised by numerous participants. Additional challenges were identified, including the lack of knowledge exchange and salary adjustments. HWAR in Palestine needs to be strengthened on the national, institutional, and individual levels through clear and standardized operating processes. All relevant stakeholders should work together through an integrated national accreditation and regulation system. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.