Evidence
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Supported employment helps people with severe mental illness to obtain work

Adults with schizophrenia and other psychosis receiving supported employment were more than twice as likely to obtain a job in the competitive labour market as those receiving pre-job training, sheltered employment or psychiatric care only. Supported employment seemed most effective when augmented with other interventions such as social or cognitive skills training. Many people with ...

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Transfusing blood close to its use-by date does not increase deaths in critically ill adults

Transfusing more recently-collected red blood cells does not improve the chance of survival for critically-ill people who need blood transfusions, compared with blood that has been stored for longer. This large international study included almost 5,000 critically ill people in intensive care units. Participants were transfused with either the freshest compatible blood available (mean storage ...

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Hearing aids make communication easier for people with mild hearing loss

Hearing aids for people with mild-to-moderate hearing loss make communication easier and improve listening ability. Quality of life improved alongside the improvements in hearing. There were no reports of adverse effects for hearing aids. Hearing loss can have a far-reaching impact on people’s mental and physical health, taking a toll on their quality of life. ...

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A strategy of 'delayed antibiotic prescribing' for respiratory infections may reduce antibiotic use

Delaying antibiotic prescribing made little difference to most symptoms of respiratory infection. It reduced antibiotic use and did not affect patient satisfaction compared with immediate prescribing of antibiotics. Increasing antibiotic resistance is a global health concern. Many people don’t realise that viruses cause most respiratory infections and that antibiotics won’t help. The strategy allows some time ...

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Lying on one’s side in labour with an epidural is safe and leads to more spontaneous births

Women who lie on their side in the second stage of labour after a low-dose epidural are more likely to give birth spontaneously than those who remain upright when actively contracting. Lying down on either side doesn’t appear to be harmful to mothers or babies. This means that 17 of these women would need to ...

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Alternative drug may prevent atrial fibrillation following heart surgery

After heart surgery around a third of people have atrial fibrillation, an abnormal heart rhythm, which impedes their recovery and lengthens hospital stay. Colchicine treatment could reduce this complication by about a third. About 11 people would need this treatment to prevent one of them developing atrial fibrillation. Using amiodarone, an alternative drug commonly used ...

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Fewer large babies are born to pregnant woman with type 1 diabetes if their glucose was monitored continuously

Pregnant women with type 1 diabetes who used a continuous glucose monitoring system were half as likely to have a large baby compared with those using standard finger prick blood glucose measurements. Only 15% of infants needed intensive care admissions due to low blood glucose in the continuous glucose monitoring group, compared with 28% born ...

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Harm reduction approaches predicted to reduce rates of new hepatitis C infection for people who inject drugs

A combination of providing clean needles and syringes and offering safer oral therapy, such as methadone, reduced the predicted risk of becoming infected with hepatitis C virus by 71%. Providing both services to people who inject drugs was likely to be cost-effective and has the potential to be cost-saving in some parts of the UK, ...

Themed Review

Comprehensive Care - Older people with frailty in hospital

People are living longer and many are enjoying healthy lives. However, a significant percentage of older people are particularly vulnerable to even relatively minor changes in their circumstances, and so need particular attention when admitted to a hospital. Comprehensive Care looks at the concept of ‘frailty’ in older people living in hospital. It brings together NIHR ...

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Two nerve drugs are not suitable for treating long-term low back pain

The drugs gabapentin and pregabalin (gabapentinoids) were found not to help lower back pain that had lasted more than three months. Gabapentin gave no benefit compared with placebo, while pregabalin was less effective than other painkillers. Both were associated with several side effects, such as dizziness. Long-term low back pain without clear cause is very ...

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