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Formation of a Volunteer Harmful Algal Bloom Network in British Columbia, Canada, Following an Outbreak of Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning  [PDF]
Lorraine McIntyre,David Cassis,Nicola Haigh
Marine Drugs , 2013, DOI: 10.3390/md11114144
Abstract: Evidence for shellfish toxin illness in British Columbia (BC) on the west coast of Canada can be traced back to 1793. For over two hundred years, domestically acquired bivalve shellfish toxin illnesses in BC were solely ascribed to paralytic shellfish poisonings caused by algal blooms of Alexandrium. This changed in 2011, when BC experienced its first outbreak of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP). As a result of this outbreak, Canada’s first DSP symposium was held in November, 2012, in North Vancouver, BC. Three of the objectives of the symposium were to provide a forum to educate key stakeholders on this emerging issue, to identify research and surveillance priorities and to create a DSP network. The purpose of this paper is to review what is known about shellfish poisoning in BC and to describe a novel volunteer network that arose following the symposium. The newly formed network was designed for industry shellfish growers to identify harmful algae bloom events, so that they may take actions to mitigate the effects of harmful blooms on shellfish morbidity. The network will also inform public health and regulatory stakeholders of potentially emerging issues in shellfish growing areas.
Ethnoveterinary medicines used for horses in Trinidad and in British Columbia, Canada
Cheryl Lans, Nancy Turner, Gerhard Brauer, Grant Lourenco, Karla Georges
Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine , 2006, DOI: 10.1186/1746-4269-2-31
Abstract: Trinidad and Tobago is located northeast of the Venezuelan coast and has a humid tropical climate. British Columbia (BC) is the western-most province in Canada and has a temperate climate. This paper describes a selection of the ethnoveterinary medicines used for horses in Trinidad and Tobago and in British Columbia. These places are part of a common market in pharmaceuticals and are both involved in the North American horse racing circuit. Since racehorses and jockeys are often in transition from other regions and between Canada (including Woodbine racetrack in Ontario, the Aqueduct racetrack and Belmont Park, both in New York) and the Caribbean, one of the goals of this research was to investigate commonalities in ethnoveterinary medicine between these two regions. Very little research has been conducted on ethnoveterinary medicine used for horses and there are few comparative studies. There are some shared cultural features between Canada and the Caribbean derived from common Amerindian culture, British colonial histories, and substantial and continuous migration from the Caribbean to North America. An estimated 150,000 Trinidadians are currently living in Canada.The population of Trinidad, just over 1 million people has equal proportions of African-origin and East Indian-origin (39%). Approximately 15% of the population consists of mixed raced persons and the remainder consists of minority groups (>2%) of European-origin, Middle-Eastern-origin and Chinese-origin people. British Columbia has a total population of 4.168 million people. The 1996 census revealed that 50% of the population was of European origin and 27% of Asian origin. The population of Chinese origin is estimated at 253,382. The 2001 Census revealed that the top 10 languages spoken in BC are: English, Chinese (including Cantonese and Mandarin), Punjabi, then five Western European languages, Tagalog and Korean.There are major differences in vegetation between the two areas. However a few studies hav
Resilient Salmon, Resilient Fisheries for British Columbia, Canada  [cached]
Michael C. Healey
Ecology and Society , 2009,
Abstract: Salmon are inherently resilient species. However, this resiliency has been undermined in British Columbia by a century of centralized, command-and-control management focused initially on maximizing yield and, more recently, on economic efficiency. Community and cultural resiliency have also been undermined, especially by the recent emphasis on economic efficiency, which has concentrated access in the hands of a few and has disenfranchised fishery-dependent communities. Recent declines in both salmon stocks and salmon prices have revealed the systemic failure of the current management system. If salmon and their fisheries are to become viable again, radically new management policies are needed. For the salmon species, the emphasis must shift from maximizing yield to restoring resilience; for salmon fisheries, the emphasis must shift from maximizing economic efficiency to maximizing community and cultural resilience. For the species, an approach is needed that integrates harvest management, habitat management, and habitat enhancement to sustain and enhance resilience. This is best achieved by giving fishing and aboriginal communities greater responsibility and authority to manage the fisheries on which they depend. Co-management arrangements that involve cooperative ownership of major multistock resources like the Fraser River and Skeena River fisheries and community-based quota management of smaller fisheries provide ways to put species conservation much more directly in the hands of the communities most dependent on the well-being and resilience of these fisheries.
Outbreak of Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning Associated with Mussels, British Columbia, Canada  [PDF]
Marsha Taylor,Lorraine McIntyre,Mark Ritson,Jason Stone,Roni Bronson,Olga Bitzikos,Wade Rourke,Eleni Galanis,Outbreak Investigation Team
Marine Drugs , 2013, DOI: 10.3390/md11051669
Abstract: In 2011, a Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP) outbreak occurred in British Columbia (BC), Canada that was associated with cooked mussel consumption. This is the first reported DSP outbreak in BC. Investigation of ill individuals, traceback of product and laboratory testing for toxins were used in this investigation. Sixty-two illnesses were reported. Public health and food safety investigation identified a common food source and harvest area. Public health and regulatory agencies took actions to recall product and notify the public. Shellfish monitoring program changes were implemented after the outbreak. Improved response and understanding of toxin production will improve management of future DSP outbreaks.
Breast cancer treatment and ethnicity in British Columbia, Canada
Parvin Yavari, Maria Barroetavena, T Greg Hislop, Chris D Bajdik
BMC Cancer , 2010, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2407-10-154
Abstract: Information on patients, tumour characteristics and treatment was obtained from BC Cancer Registry (BCCR) and BC Cancer Agency (BCCA) records. Treatment among ethnic groups was analyzed by stage at diagnosis and time period at diagnosis. Differences among the three ethnic groups were tested using chi-square tests, Fisher exact tests and a multivariate logistic model.There was no significant difference in overall surgery use for stage I and II disease between the ethnic groups, however there were significant differences when surgery with and without radiation were considered separately. These differences did not change significantly with time. Treatment with chemotherapy and hormone therapy did not differ among the minority groups.The description of treatment differences is the first step to guiding interventions that reduce ethnic disparities. Specific studies need to examine reasons for the observed differences and the influence of culture and beliefs.Breast cancer is an important public health issue and major cause of premature mortality in women around the world. Globally, it accounts for 22% of all new cancer diagnoses in women, and approximately 10% of cases in men and women combined. It represents 7% of cancer-related deaths worldwide [1]. In Canada during 2009, breast cancer is estimated to be the most common cancer in women, with more than 22,000 new diagnoses. It is expected to kill more than 5,000 Canadian women in 2009, more than any other type of cancer except lung. One in nine women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during 2009, and 1 in 27 will die from the disease. Breast cancer accounted for an estimated 95,300 potential years of life lost in Canada during 2009 [1].Canada is becoming more racially and ethnically diverse. Its immigrant population has increased substantially, contributing to growing ethnic communities. Racial and ethnic disparities in breast cancer incidence, stage at diagnosis, survival and mortality are well documented [2]; howeve
STI service delivery in British Columbia, Canada; providers' views of their services to youth  [cached]
Masaro Cindy L,Johnson Joy,Chabot Cathy,Shoveller Jean
BMC Health Services Research , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-12-240
Abstract: Background Little is known about service providers’ knowledge, attitudes, and experiences in relation to the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of individuals seeking care for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and how they influence the delivery of services. The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of STI care providers and the ways they approached their practice. Methods We used a qualitative approach drawing on methods used in thematic analysis. Individual semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with 21 service providers delivering STI services in youth clinics, STI clinics, reproductive health clinics, and community public health units in British Columbia (BC), Canada. Results Service providers’ descriptions of their activities and roles were shaped by a number of themes including specialization, scarcity, and maintaining the status quo. The analysis suggests that service providers perceive, at times, the delivery of STI care to be inefficient and inadequate. Conclusion Findings from this study identify deficits in the delivery of STI services in BC. To understand these deficits, more research is needed to examine the larger health care structure within which service providers work, and how this structure not only informs and influences the delivery of services, but also how particular structural barriers impinge on and/or restrict practice.
A Comprehensive DNA Barcode Library for the Looper Moths (Lepidoptera: Geometridae) of British Columbia, Canada  [PDF]
Jeremy R. deWaard,Paul D. N. Hebert,Leland M. Humble
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0018290
Abstract: The construction of comprehensive reference libraries is essential to foster the development of DNA barcoding as a tool for monitoring biodiversity and detecting invasive species. The looper moths of British Columbia (BC), Canada present a challenging case for species discrimination via DNA barcoding due to their considerable diversity and limited taxonomic maturity.
Descriptive Epidemiology of Serious Work-Related Injuries in British Columbia, Canada  [PDF]
Jonathan Fan, Christopher B. McLeod, Mieke Koehoorn
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0038750
Abstract: Objective This study examined the rates and distribution of serious work-related injuries by demographic, work and injury characteristics in British Columbia, Canada from 2002–2008, using population-based data. Methods Claims for workers with a serious injury were extracted from workers’ compensation data. Serious injuries were defined by long duration, high cost, serious medical diagnosis, or fatality. Workforce estimates were used to calculate stratum-specific rates. Rate-ratios (RR) and 95% CIs were calculated using negative binomial regression for the comparison of rates, adjusting for gender, age and occupation. Results Women had a lower overall serious injury rate compared to men (RR: 0.93, 95% CI: 0.87–0.99). The 35–44 age group had the highest overall rate compared to the youngest age group. The rate for severe strains/sprains was similarly high for men and women in the 35–44 age group, although there was a differential pattern by gender for other injury types: the rate of fracture was similar across age groups for men, but increased with age for women (RR: 2.7, 95% CI: 2.2–3.3); and the rate of severe falls increased with age for men and women, with a larger three-fold increase for older women (men: RR: 1.8, 95% CI: 1.7–2.1; women: RR: 3.2, 95% CI: 2.7–3.7). Conclusions The risk of serious injuries is higher among specific age groups with different patterns emerging for men and women. Variations persisted within similar injury types and occupation groups in our adjusted models. These results provide evidence for the burden of serious injuries and a basis for future analytic research. Given projected demographic shifts and increasing workforce participation of older workers, intervention programs should be carefully implemented with consideration to demographic groups at risk for serious injuries in the workplace.
HCV co-infection in HIV positive population in British Columbia, Canada
Jane A Buxton, Amanda Yu, Paul H Kim, John J Spinelli, Margot Kuo, Maria Alvarez, Mark Gilbert, Mel Krajden
BMC Public Health , 2010, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-10-225
Abstract: Positive cases of HIV were linked to the combined laboratory database (of negative and positive HCV antibody results) and HCV reported cases in British Columbia (BC).Of 4,598 HIV cases with personal identifiers, 3,219 (70%) were linked to the combined HCV database, 1,700 (53%) of these were anti-HCV positive. HCV was diagnosed first in 52% of co-infected cases (median time to HIV identification 3 1/2 years). HIV and HCV was diagnosed within a two week window in 26% of cases. Among individuals who were diagnosed with HIV infection at baseline, subsequent diagnoses of HCV infection was independently associated with: i) intravenous drug use (IDU) in males and females, Hazard Ratio (HR) = 6.64 (95% CI: 4.86-9.07) and 9.76 (95% CI: 5.76-16.54) respectively; ii) reported Aboriginal ethnicity in females HR = 2.09 (95% CI: 1.34-3.27) and iii) males not identified as men-who-have-sex-with-men (MSM), HR = 2.99 (95% CI: 2.09-4.27).Identification of HCV first compared to HIV first was independently associated with IDU in males and females OR = 2.83 (95% CI: 1.84-4.37) and 2.25 (95% CI: 1.15-4.39) respectively, but not Aboriginal ethnicity or MSM. HIV was identified first in 22%, with median time to HCV identification of 15 months;The ability to link BC public health and laboratory HIV and HCV information provided a unique opportunity to explore demographic and risk factors associated with HIV/HCV co-infection. Over half of persons with HIV infection who were tested for HCV were anti-HCV positive; half of these had HCV diagnosed first with HIV identification a median 3.5 years later. This highlights the importance of public health follow-up and harm reduction measures for people identified with HCV to prevent subsequent HIV infection.HIV and hepatitis C (HCV) are major burdens on the health care system in Canada and share some common modes of transmission. HCV co-infection is estimated to occur in 20% of Canadians infected with HIV [1] and 50-90% of HIV-positive persons who use
Taxonomic synopsis of invasive and native Spartina (Poaceae, Chloridoideae) in the Pacific Northwest (British Columbia, Washington and Oregon), including the first report of Spartina ×townsendii for British Columbia, Canada
Jeffery Saarela
PhytoKeys , 2012, DOI: 10.3897/phytokeys.10.2734
Abstract: Five species of the grass genus Spartina are invading salt marshes along the Pacific coast of North America, of which three have been documented in British Columbia, Canada, in only the last decade. A taxonomic synopsis of the two native (S. gracilis, S. pectinata) and five introduced Spartina taxa (S. anglica, S. alterniflora, S. densiflora, S. patens, S. ×townsendii) in the Pacific Northwest is presented to facilitate their identification, including nomenclature, a new taxonomic key, new descriptions for a subset of taxa, and representative specimens. Spartina ×townsendii is newly reported for the flora of British Columbia. The non-coastal species S. pectinata is reported from an urban site in British Columbia, the first confirmed report of the taxon for the province. Lectotypes are newly designated for S. anglica C.E. Hubb., S. maritimasubvar.fallax St.-Yves, and S. cynosuroides f. major St.-Yves.
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