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Rockhampton, Australia

niversity Australia

Rockhampton, Australia
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McClanachan M.,niversity Australia | Cole C.,niversity Australia
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit | Year: 2012

Railway operators are continually increasing the length and weight of heavy haul trains to achieve reduced operating costs and increase network capacity. With longer and heavier trains, it becomes increasingly difficult for human operators to control the train optimally. The three main objectives of train control are minimizing journey time, minimizing energy usage, and minimizing in-train dynamics. This article reviews published train control optimization methods used in passenger, freight, and long heavy haul trains with a view of determining which methods would be best applied to the optimization of heavy haul train control. © Authors 2011.

Blunden S.,niversity Australia | Galland B.,University of Otago
Sleep Medicine Reviews | Year: 2014

The main aim of this paper is to consider relevant theoretical and empirical factors defining optimal sleep, and assess the relative importance of each in developing a working definition for, or guidelines about, optimal sleep, particularly in children. We consider whether optimal sleep is an issue of sleep quantity or of sleep quality. Sleep quantity is discussed in terms of duration, timing, variability and dose-response relationships. Sleep quality is explored in relation to continuity, sleepiness, sleep architecture and daytime behaviour. Potential limitations of sleep research in children are discussed, specifically the loss of research precision inherent in sleep deprivation protocols involving children. We discuss which outcomes are the most important to measure. We consider the notion that insufficient sleep may be a totally subjective finding, is impacted by the age of the reporter, driven by socio-cultural patterns and sleep-wake habits, and that, in some individuals, the driver for insufficient sleep can be viewed in terms of a cost-benefit relationship, curtailing sleep in order to perform better while awake. We conclude that defining optimal sleep is complex. The only method of capturing this elusive concept may be by somnotypology, taking into account duration, quality, age, gender, race, culture, the task at hand, and an individual's position in both sleep-alert and morningness-eveningness continuums. At the experimental level, a unified approach by researchers to establish standardized protocols to evaluate optimal sleep across paediatric age groups is required. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Davies C.A.,niversity Australia | Vandelanotte C.,niversity Australia | Duncan M.J.,niversity Australia | van Uffelen J.G.Z.,University of Queensland | van Uffelen J.G.Z.,Monash University
Preventive Medicine | Year: 2012

Background: Associations between the combined effect of physical activity and screen based activities on health related quality of life remain largely undetermined. Methods: During 2008-2010, cross-sectional data for self-reported health related quality of life, physical activity, and screen-time were collected for 3796 Australian adults. Logistic regression was conducted to examine associations for six combinations of physical activity (none, insufficient, and sufficient), and screen-time (low and high) on health related quality of life. Results: In comparison to the reference category (sufficient physical activity and low screen-time) men and women who reported no physical activity and either high (OR = 4.52, 95% CI 2.82-7.25) or low (OR = 2.29, 95% CI 1.37-3.80) screen-time, were significantly more likely to report over 14 unhealthy days. Men reporting either; no physical activity and high (OR = 3.15, 95% CI 1.92-5.15), or low (OR = 2.17, 95% CI 1.30-3.63) screen-time; insufficient physical activity and high (OR = 1.68, 95% CI 1.08-2.60), or low (OR = 1.79, 95% CI 1.14-2.82) screen-time were more likely to rate their health as poor or fair. In women this was significant for those who reported no physical activity and high screen-time (OR = 1.98, 95% CI, 1.19-3.31). Conclusions: Results suggest that the combination of no physical activity and high screen-time demonstrated the greatest negative impact on health related quality of life. © 2012 Elsevier Inc..

Naweed A.,niversity Australia | Balakrishnan G.,niversity Australia
Road and Transport Research | Year: 2012

In the last decade, simulation technology has become a familiar feature in the Australian rail industry. This has been driven by a strong organisational intent to improve driver learning, and fuelled by the promise that train simulators enrich training, enhance decision support, and engender skills that transfer positively from the synthetic environment to the actual cab. This paper presents research that sets out to investigate how train simulators are currently being integrated into the rail organisation, and how industry end-users are utilising them to deliver training. Focus groups and observations were undertaken at a number of rail organisations that either owned simulators or were undergoing procurement. The data collected were analysed thematically and showed that, whilst practices for integration were varied, simulators were being extremely underutilised, in spite of their keen uptake. Further, effective application appeared hindered by a plethora of usability issues, concerns over technical reliability and simulator fidelity. The findings revealed one or more disconnects residing between the developer's promise and the organisational intent, which destabilised the process for fully integrating a simulator. This paper disentangles this dynamic by exploring the key obstructions impeding the path of effective simulator application.

Kinnear S.,niversity Australia
Marine Drugs | Year: 2010

Cylindrospermopsin (CYN) is rapidly being recognised as one of the most globally important of the freshwater algal toxins. The ever-expanding distribution of CYN producers into temperate zones is heightening concern that this toxin will represent serious human, as well as environmental, health risks across many countries. Since 1999, a number of studies have demonstrated the ability for CYN to bioaccumulate in freshwater organisms. This paper synthesizes the most current information on CYN accumulation, including notes on the global distribution of CYN producers, and a précis of CYN's ecological and human effects. Studies on the bioaccumulation of CYN are systematically reviewed, together with an analysis of patterns of accumulation. A discussion on the factors influencing bioaccumulation rates and potential is also provided, along with notes on detection, monitoring and risk assessments. Finally, key gaps in the existing research are identified for future study. © 2010 by the authors; licensee Molecular Diversity Preservation International.

Jennings C.A.,niversity Australia | Jennings C.A.,University of Alberta | Vandelanotte C.,niversity Australia | Caperchione C.M.,University of British Columbia | Mummery W.K.,University of Alberta
Preventive Medicine | Year: 2014

Objective: This study examined the effectiveness of a fully automated web-based programme to increase physical activity in adults with Type 2 diabetes. Methods: Between May and July 2010, participants were randomly allocated into either a 12-week intervention (n= 195) or a control (n= 202) group. Participants were adults diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, residing in Australia. Participants were assessed at baseline, 12 and 36. weeks. The primary physical activity outcome was self-reported minutes of total physical activity. Secondary physical activity outcomes included minutes spent walking, and engaged in moderate, and vigorous physical activity. Additional measures included website satisfaction and website usage. The intervention consisted of a 12-week web-based physical activity intervention developed based on the Theory of Planned Behavior and self-management framework. Data were analysed from 2011 to 2012. Results: There was a significant group-by-time interaction (X2 (df=1)=6.37, p<.05) for total physical activity favouring the intervention group d=0.11, for those who completed the intervention, however this was not significant in the intention-to-treat analysis d=0.01. The intervention yielded high website satisfaction and usage. Conclusions: In general, there is some evidence for the effectiveness of web-based interventions for improving physical activity levels; however it is clear that maintaining improvements remains an issue. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Happell B.,niversity Australia | Koehn S.,niversity Australia
Nursing and Health Sciences | Year: 2011

The aim of this study was to examine the impact of age on the perceptions of mental and physical health in an Australian population. A cross-sectional study of the Queensland population was conducted via telephone interviews (n=1165). The Short Form-12 Health Survey was used to measure the population's perceived physical and mental health and additional demographic information was collected. Groups with participants who were aged 18-24, 25-34, 35-44, 45-54, 55-64, and >65years were compared. The results suggested that the participants' perceptions of mental health gradually increased with age, as the 55-64 and >65years old age groups scored significantly higher than did the younger age groups. Conversely, the older participants scored significantly lower than the younger participants on the physical health scale. Further research is warranted to consider the factors that might influence the perceptions of mental health across the life span. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Asia Pty Ltd..

Happell B.,niversity Australia | Scott D.,niversity Australia | Platania-Phung C.,niversity Australia | Nankivell J.,niversity Australia
Mental Health and Physical Activity | Year: 2012

Objectives: People with serious mental illness experience heightened physical ill-health. Physical activity is an effective strategy for improving physical health in this group. This paper explores nurse views on the place of physical activity in the physical health care of people with serious mental illness who are receiving mental health care services. Methods: A qualitative exploratory study involving 38 nurses working in a regional and remote area of Queensland, Australia. Focus group interviews were audio recorded and transcribed and a thematic analysis was conducted. Results: Holism was identified as the main theme and physical activity was thought about as an aspect of holism at the level of the person and environment. For nurses, holism equated with supporting consumers in being more physical active and having healthier lifestyles. This was qualified by the sub-themes of fragmentation (that rendered physical activity difficult for consumers, and the nurses supporting them), and integration (where nurses and colleagues sought to address fragmentation in conjunction with consumers, but with transient success). Conclusion: As part of their holistic outlook, nurses recognise the importance of physical activity for consumers' overall health, and were involved in promoting physical activity through health education. When nurses tried to develop holism in mental health care (e.g. re-integrating services) sources of fragmentation were too significant and wide-ranging to overcome. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Happell B.,niversity Australia | Koehn S.,niversity Australia
International Journal of Mental Health Nursing | Year: 2010

The reduction and, where possible, elimination of seclusion has been recognized as a national safety priority for mental health services in Australia, with significant attention devoted to strategies to achieve this goal. The aim of this study was to compare specific demographic characteristics between consumers who have been secluded to those who have not. Patient data (n = 3244) collected by 11 mental health services across Australia for six months over a 12 month period were analysed using demographic statistics. A comparison was undertaken between those who were secluded one or more times (n = 271) and those who were not secluded (n = 2973). Differences were measured with the use of independent samples t-tests and chi-square statistics. Age, gender, diagnosis, indigenous status and Health of the National Outcomes Scores (HoNOS) were found to be significant factors in relation to seclusion. Men, younger people, and indigenous people were found to be more likely to be secluded. In addition, consumers who scored higher on the behaviour,impairment and social subscales of HoNOS were more likely to be secluded. Comparative analysis of demographic characteristics of secluded and non-secluded patients can provide vital information for consideration when planning and evaluating seclusion reduction strategies. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Australian College of Mental Health Nurses Inc.

Scott D.,niversity Australia | Scott D.,Menzies Research Institute | Blizzard L.,Menzies Research Institute | Fell J.,University of Tasmania | Jones G.,Menzies Research Institute
Arthritis Care and Research | Year: 2012

Objective. To examine the potential role of self-reported joint pain, stiffness, and dysfunction, and radiographic osteoarthritis (ROA), in sarcopenia progression and falls risk in older adults. Methods. Seven hundred nine older adults (50% women, mean ± SD age 62 ± 7 years) were examined at baseline and followup (mean ± SD 2.6 ± 0.4 years). ROA was assessed using the Altman atlas, and pain at 7 anatomic sites was self-reported. Dual X-ray absorptiometry assessed leg lean mass, dynamometry assessed knee extension and whole leg strength, leg muscle quality (LMQ) was calculated as whole leg strength relative to leg lean mass, and the Physiological Profile Assessment assessed falls risk. Results. In women only, baseline knee pain predicted a greater decline in knee extension strength, whole leg strength, and LMQ, and a greater increase in falls risk. Severe knee pain, stiffness, and dysfunction predicted greater declines in knee extension strength and increases in falls risk (all P < 0.05). Hip pain also predicted a greater decline in knee extension strength (-1.53 kg; 95% confidence interval [95% CI]-2.95,-0.11). No associations were observed between pain and sarcopenia indicators in men. Somewhat surprisingly, higher baseline total knee ROA score predicted a greater increase in mean leg lean mass (0.05 kg; 95% CI 0.02, 0.08) in both sexes. A path analysis demonstrated that knee ROA may contribute to declines in LMQ in women, through increases in pain, stiffness, and dysfunction. Conclusion. Knee and hip pain may directly contribute to the progression of sarcopenia and increased falls risk in older women. © 2012, American College of Rheumatology.

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