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See detailAssessment of existing formulas for equivalent damping to use in direct displacement-based design
Degée, Hervé ULg; Bento, R.; Massena, B.

in Proceedings of the 14th World Conference on Erthquake Engineering (2008)

It is generally stated that an accurate evaluation of the equivalent viscous damping is a crucial step in the DirectDisplacement-Based Design (DDBD) methodology. A wrong assessment of equivalent viscous ... [more ▼]

It is generally stated that an accurate evaluation of the equivalent viscous damping is a crucial step in the DirectDisplacement-Based Design (DDBD) methodology. A wrong assessment of equivalent viscous dampingcan indeed lead to important errors on the actual ductility demand of the structural elements. The objective of thepresent contribution is to assess and compare different existing formulas for the evaluation of the equivalent damping and to provide information on the impact of choosing one or another formulation on the seismicdesign. It is more precisely focused on the very recent proposals of Dwairi – Kowalsky and Blandon –Priestley. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of exposure to persistent organochlorine compounds in epidemiological studies on breast cancer : a literature review and perspectives for the CECILE study
Bachelet, D.; Verner, M.-A.; Guihenneuc-Jouyaux, C. et al

in Acta Clinica Belgica (2010), 65(1), 49-57

Breast cancer is the most frequent neoplastic disease in women representing 50,000 new cases each year in France. The well-established risk factors, as those related to the reproductive history, cannot ... [more ▼]

Breast cancer is the most frequent neoplastic disease in women representing 50,000 new cases each year in France. The well-established risk factors, as those related to the reproductive history, cannot account for all cases of breast cancer. Other environmental or lifestyle factors need to be explored in depth. Persistent organochlorine compounds (OCs) have attracted attention because of their endocrine disrupting properties that make them possible risk factors for breast cancer, but most epidemiological studies did not report an association between OC concentrations in blood or adipose tissue and breast cancer risk. In these studies, OC levels were measured in biological samples obtained at the time of cancer diagnosis or only a few years before. In this paper, we review the studies on dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and polychlorobiphenyl (PCB) exposures in relation to breast cancer. We discuss the relevance of OC biological measurements as lifelong exposure indicators, and we describe a new method for assessing exposure to OCs in epiderniological studies. Most studies were carried out recently and reported OC concentrations that were substantially lower than those reported during the 1960s and 1970s. We make the assumption that these OC levels were not reliable indicators, as they were not measured during etiologically relevant periods in a woman's lifetime, i.e. during the prenatal period, the puberty or the period before a first full-term pregnancy, which are regarded as key periods of vulnerability of mammary gland cells to carcinogens. This may have resulted in non differential exposure misclassification and hence in the absence of an observed association between OC levels and breast cancer in most epidemiological studies. Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models allow estimating persistent organic pollutant lifetime toxicokinetics profiles retrospec- tively in women, by taking into account individual differences in metabolism and key events that affect OC kinetics such as lactation and weight variations. PBPK models will be applied to the participants of a large French population-based case-control study including 1080 cases and 1055 controls. Exposure misclassification could have prevented from observing an association between exposure to OCs and breast cancer risk. PBPK models could be used as a novel way of assessing exposure to OCs and to investigate the impact of internal exposure at different time windows on breast cancer incidence. [less ▲]

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See detailASSESSMENT OF FATIGUE RELIABILITY FOR JACKET-TYPE OFFSHORE PLATFORMS CONSIDERING DYNAMIC BEHAVOIR
Reza Khedmati, Mohammad; Rigo, Philippe ULg; Amrane, Amirouche ULg et al

in Proceedings of the ASME 2013 32nd International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering OMAE 2013 (2013, June)

In order to traditionally investigate the strength of marine structures, the structure is subjected to a maximum static load. However, the marine structures are usually suffering environmental forces ... [more ▼]

In order to traditionally investigate the strength of marine structures, the structure is subjected to a maximum static load. However, the marine structures are usually suffering environmental forces varying with time. Wave forces are the most important time dependent loading that causes fatigue in structural elements and joints. In this paper different methods base on S-N curve and linear elastic failure mechanics are presented. The governing equations and theories that are used in each method are expressed and the application of each method will be discussed. The two main methods of deterministic analyses are: stressbased approach (S-N curve approach) and linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM) approaches. These approaches are applicable to different analyzing strategies, ie the first approach is used for cases in which general form of fatigue is dominant, but the latter involves the calculations of reliability as functions of crack geometry and its boundary conditions. The SPD12C jacket platform is also modeled as a case study and the results of fatigue reliability analysis are presented. In this paper a comprehensive method is presented to accurately predict the reliability of offshore platforms. This method is based on S-N curve and the results are compared with the fatigue life of joints. Due to nonlinear interaction of soil and piles and the other affecting parameters such as flexibility of joints, non Gaussian procedure of loading, and nonlinearity of reaction force, the precise analyzing of stress levels will be impossible and a complex numerical analysis could only give limited information about the statistical properties of stress. In order to perform the fatigue analysis and predicting the cycles of stress SACS was used which is known as a powerful software in designing and analyzing offshore structures. In this paper the whole structure was modeled subjected to different forces such as wave and sea currents. The effects of parameters such as marine growth and interaction of soil and piles are also included. The latter is shown to have a significant effect on determination of fatigue life of the platform. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of fine scale population genetic diversity and regeneration in Congo basin logged forests
Evrard, Quentin ULg; Daïnou, Kasso ULg; Hardy, Olivier et al

Poster (2016, June)

Background In the Congo Basin most of the light-demanding timber tree species display a deficit of natural regeneration which is a major handicap for sustainable production and certification. Whilst the ... [more ▼]

Background In the Congo Basin most of the light-demanding timber tree species display a deficit of natural regeneration which is a major handicap for sustainable production and certification. Whilst the majority of scientists investigate abiotic and biotic factors explaining that pattern, we hypothesize that tree population density or individual spatial isolation may also affect the tree fitness through inbreeding. In this study, we integrate ecological and genetic approaches to characterize the regeneration potential of a set of priority timber species by (i) estimating pollen dispersal distances at various tree population densities, and (ii) evaluating the impact of increasing spatial isolation on mating characteristics and tree fitness. The ultimate goal is the proposal of minimum population density that prevents inbreeding consequences. Method This ongoing study focuses on 10 timber species (Pericopsis elata, Milicia excelsa, Baillonella toxisperma, Entandrophragma cylindricum, E. utile, E. angolense, E. candollei, Afzelia bipindensis, Erythrophleum suaveloens, Terminalia superba). The data collection was carried out in the logging concession granted to Pallisco in Cameroon. We established two 400-ha plots, where all individuals (DBH > 10 cm) of the target species were inventoried and mapped. A sample of leave or cambium was collected for each of these individuals, as well as for seedlings to characterize patterns of gene flow using genetic tools (nuclear microsatellites). Dispersal agents were identified by direct observations and camera traps. Germination success was characterized in nursery for seeds collected on trees under an increasing isolation gradient. Results Main dispersal agents (wind, bat, rodent) and predators (rodent) were identified for all the species. The gene flow and germination data is still being analyzed and the main results will be presented in the poster. Conclusion Our data will allow characterizing the reproductive biology of a set of important timber species from the Congo basin. These information will strengthen sustainable forest management and the application of certification by adjusting harvesting norms through the use of scientifically-relevant data. In particular, we will tentatively define a maximum distance to be maintained between two adults to allow a qualitative reproduction. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of fodder biomass in Senegalese rangelands using earth observation and field data
Diouf, Abdoul Aziz ULg

Doctoral thesis (2016)

Senegalese livestock size has largely increased during the last three decades in relation to the population growth. The fodder biomass stock available at the end of the growing season, therefore, becomes ... [more ▼]

Senegalese livestock size has largely increased during the last three decades in relation to the population growth. The fodder biomass stock available at the end of the growing season, therefore, becomes increasingly limited to meet feeding needs of pastoral livestock which provides third of the national agricultural wealth. With the reduction of natural grazing lands mostly generated by the expansion of croplands, and the reduction of fodder biomass production due to drought effects, the increase of the livestock size leads to the rangelands overload whose persistence can lead in turn to their degradation. A technique based on a simple linear relationship between the temporal integration of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and the ground biomass data, developed in the 1980s, has been operationally applied by the Centre de Suivi Ecologique (CSE) of Dakar (Senegal) to assess the fodder biomass available in rangelands at the end of the growing season. The derived map of total biomass production enables to help pastoral livestock managers as well as national stakeholders against food insecurity and natural resources degradation. Carried out annually, this approach comprises unfortunately some uncertainties as: (1) the saturation drawback of NDVI in areas with high biomass productivity, (2) the temporal scale which is restricted to biomass data of the ongoing year not being used again in the following year, (3) the low predictive ability due to the large time gap between data collection and published results, and (4) the high costs for annual data collection. In addition, although the earth observation (EO) data have largely progressed during the last three decades, this technique has not changed over this period and consequently is not state-of-the-art. To tackle these limitations and advance the traditional method, new statistical models that include new earth observations datasets and historical in situ plant biomass data were developed for estimating and / or predicting the forage availability at the end of the growing season in Senegalese semi-arid rangelands. A backward analysis of the linear regression approach currently applied in Senegal provided evidence that nonlinear regression functions such as Exponential and Power are more suited to estimate the end-of-season total biomass in this region using annual data solely. A completely new methodology using multiple-linear models which include various phenological metrics from the time series of the Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation (FAPAR) and 14 years of in situ total biomass samples was developed. The proposed approach provided more reliable and accurate estimates as compared to the current CSE biomass product. Multiple-linear models developed with specific metrics adapted to ecosystem properties increased the overall accuracy of the fodder biomass estimates and mitigated the saturation of FAPAR obtained with models run across the whole study area. With this new approach, timely information about possible deficits/surplus of total fodder biomass can be provided to stakeholders using phenological metrics that are available relatively early in the growing season. Another new approach based on a machine learning algorithm (i.e., Cubist) was developed, as never done before, to assess herbaceous biomass in Senegalese Sahel. Three Cubist models using FAPAR seasonal metrics and/or agrometeorological variables (i.e., soil water status indicators) were established and compared. The Cubist model including both FAPAR and agrometeorological variables provided the best estimation performance. This model enabled to mitigate the saturation affecting optical remotely sensed vegetation data in areas of high plant productivity as well as the discrepancy between herbaceous biomass and greenness, and corrected therefore for herbaceous biomass underestimations observed with the sole FAPAR based model, particularly in sparsely vegetated areas. In contrast to the date of the growing season onset retrieved from FAPAR seasonal dynamics, the rainy season onset was significantly related to the herbaceous biomass and its inclusion in models could constitute a significant improvement in forecasting risks of fodder biomass deficit. The methods developed in this research provide tools to assess Senegalese forage resources at two levels: herbaceous and total fodder biomass (Herbaceous + woody leaf biomass). They require limited data and free available software and therefore can be easily replicated in other countries of the West African Sahel. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of functional connectivity in fMRI data using wavelet-based resampling method.
Eryilmaz, H.; Van De Ville, D.; Desseilles, Martin ULg et al

Conference (2008, January)

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See detailAssessment of gestation, lactation and fasting on stable isotope ratios in northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris)
Habran, Sarah ULg; Debier, Cathy; Crocker, Dan E. et al

in Marine Mammal Sciences (2010), 26(4), 880-895

Effects of physiological processes such as gestation, lactation and nutritional stress on stable isotope ratios remain poorly understood. To determine their impact, we investigated these processes in ... [more ▼]

Effects of physiological processes such as gestation, lactation and nutritional stress on stable isotope ratios remain poorly understood. To determine their impact, we investigated these processes in simultaneously fasting and lactating northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris). Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values were measured in blood and milk of 10 mother-pup pairs on days 5 and 22 of lactation. As long- and short-term integrators of diet, blood cells and serum may reflect foraging data or energy reserves from late gestation and lactation, respectively. Limited changes in isotopic signatures of maternal blood over the lactating period were highlighted. Nitrogen isotope fractionation associated with mother-to-offspring transfer of nutrients was generated between mother and offspring during gestation and lactation. This fractionation was tissue and time-specific, it varied between early and late lactation from +0.6‰ to +1.3‰ in blood cells and from +1.1‰ to nonsignificant value in serum. Therefore, if pups appear to be good proxies to investigate the female trophic ecology especially for C sources, much more caution is required in using δ15N values. Further studies are also needed to better define the relative impact of fasting and lactation on the enrichment or depletion of isotopes in different tissues. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of glucose metabolism in humans with the simultaneous use of indirect calorimetry and tracer techniques.
Tappy, L.; Paquot, Nicolas ULg; Tounian, P. et al

in Clinical Physiology (1995), 15(1), 1-12

Concomitant measurements of sytemic glucose delivery and carbohydrate oxidation are frequently performed in human investigations. Systemic glucose delivery (SGD) is usually determined using dilution of ... [more ▼]

Concomitant measurements of sytemic glucose delivery and carbohydrate oxidation are frequently performed in human investigations. Systemic glucose delivery (SGD) is usually determined using dilution of infused glucose tracers; net carbohydrate oxidation rate (net CHOOX) can be calculated from respiratory gas exchanges and urinary nitrogen excretion (indirect calorimetry); alternatively, glucose oxidation can be measured from labelled CO2 production during infusion of carbon-labelled glucose tracers. In this paper, the theory underlying the use of each of these techniques is briefly reviewed and qualitative differences are outlined. SGD represents the sum of hepatic glucogenolysis, gluconeogenesis from amino acids or glycerol, and, according to the glucose tracer used, glucose cycles (glucose-phosphate cycle, fructose-phosphate cycle, Cori and glucose-alanine cycles); systemic delivery of exogenous glucose after oral or i.v. glucose administration is also measured. Net CHOOX represents oxidation of glucose arising from hepatic or muscle glycogen or from exogenous glucose; it does not take into account oxidation of glucose formed from amino acids or glycerol, which is included in net protein or lipid oxidation. In contrast, isotopic determination of glucose oxidation corresponds to oxidation of glucose originating from hepatic glycogen breakdown, of exogenously administered glucose, and of glucose formed from amino acids and glycerol. Non-oxidative glucose disposal, calculated as SGD-net CHOOX, corresponds to the sum of gluconeogenesis from amino acids or glycerol (which are included in net protein and lipid oxidation), glucose cycles, and glycogen synthesis. [less ▲]

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See detailThe assessment of grazing intensity in northern Morocco, using new techniques
Chebli, Youssef ULg; Chentouf, M.; Hornick, Jean-Luc ULg et al

Conference (2016)

In Rif Mountain of Morocco, forest rangelands provide goods and services, which satisfy the diverse needs of local population. These silvopastoral areas represent the most important feed sources for goats ... [more ▼]

In Rif Mountain of Morocco, forest rangelands provide goods and services, which satisfy the diverse needs of local population. These silvopastoral areas represent the most important feed sources for goats. Goats are exclusively conducted in extensive farming systems in which most nutrients from forest pastures. Grazing is associated with daily activities significantly different from those of animals in confinement, such as grazing behavior and distance. The assessment of grazing intensity is important for making adequate management decisions on rangelands. Currently, new techniques have been proposed to characterize the feeding behavior of goats on rangelands and throughout the day. These measures are now determined mainly by GPS collars and IceTag, which are used to monitor activity, location and movement of goat in grazing areas. The aim was to characterise their spatio-temporal movement and activities depending on the season (spring and summer), i.e. the variation in grazing intensities, daily trajectories of the herds, the number of steps, time spent standing and lying. This study was conducted in a forest rangeland (Derdara) in western of Rif Mountain. 8 Goats were fitted by GPS collars (attached around the animal’s necks) and IceTags (attached to a rear leg of goat) during three days. Grazing area was estimated to 151 ha with a perimeter of 10 km. Grazing time and covered distance were estimated to 9 vs 12 hours and 6.9 vs 9.2 km per day, respectively in spring and summer. The short duration of grazing during spring compare to summer can be explained by the high forage supply, coinciding with the vegetative peak of pastoral species. In summer, goats are exhausted due to high temperature which limits their movement in altitude. In spring, 62.4% of animal activity is devoted to grazing, against 68.7% in summer. During dry season (summer) goats move more compared to the spring (6600 vs 4400 steps per day, respectively in summer and spring), which was confirmed by GPS collars results. The study also revealed that the goats consumed mainly of palatable vegetation at ground level. Pasture area, itinerary and covered distance of goats varies depending on the season. The intersection of several parameters of pastoral assessment with the study of feeding behavior of goats on rangelands by using new techniques, could be useful in future to a better management of herd in time and space. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of grazing rates in Daphnia galeata
Thys, Isabelle; Pandolfini, Eliana; Darchambeau, François ULg et al

Conference (1999, September 14)

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See detailAssessment of hallucinations
Bell, Vaughan; Raballo, Andrea; Laroi, Frank ULg

in Laroi, Frank; Aleman, André (Eds.) Hallucinations: A guide to treatment and management (2010)

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See detailAssessment of health claims in the field of bone: a view of the Group for the Respect of Ethics and Excellence in Science (GREES)
Bruyère, Olivier ULg; Rizzoli, René; Coxam, V. et al

in Osteoporosis International (2012), 23

Health claims for food products in Europe are permitted if the nutrient has been shown to have a beneficial nutritional or physiological effect. This paper defines health claims related to bone health and ... [more ▼]

Health claims for food products in Europe are permitted if the nutrient has been shown to have a beneficial nutritional or physiological effect. This paper defines health claims related to bone health and provides guidelines for the design and the methodology of clinical studies to support claims. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of high sensitive troponin T and I immunoassays in patients with acute chest
Le Goff, Caroline ULg; Garweg, Christophe ULg; Laurent, Terry et al

in Clinical Chemistry (2010, July), 56(S6), 127

Introduction: Cardiac troponin I and T are specific markers of myocardial injury that are widely used for the diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome (ACS). In acute chest pain without ST-segment elevation ... [more ▼]

Introduction: Cardiac troponin I and T are specific markers of myocardial injury that are widely used for the diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome (ACS). In acute chest pain without ST-segment elevation, they are used to differentiate unstable angina from non ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI). Recently, troponin assays with higher analytical sensitivities became available to enable the detection of minor myocardial damage and identify individuals at higher risk for ACS. As a result of its high tissue-specificity, cardiac troponin T and I are cardio-specific, highly sensitive markers for myocardial damage. The aim of this study was to evaluate the new higher sensitive troponin (T and I) in patients with stable angina and acute chest pain without ST-segment elevation. Methods: Sixty subjects (mean age : 65.5± 11 years), were included: 20 healthy controls, 20 patients with stable angina, 9 with unstable angina (troponin-) and 18 patients with NSTEMI myocardial infarction (troponin+). The protocol was approved by the ethic committee of the University of Liège (Belgium). High sensitive troponin T (hsTnT) determination was realized on heparin plasma by electrochemiluminescence immunoassay on Modular E (Roche Diagnostic). Troponin I II (TnI II) is a chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay for the quantitative determination of cardiac troponin-I in heparine plasma on the ARCHITECT i System (Abbott Diagnostic). The lower detection limit of these assays was 0.005μg/L for hsTnT and 0.01μg/L for TnI II. Stastistical analysis was performed using t test. P value <0.05 was considered significant. Results: HsTNT levels were 0.003(0.003, 0.004) [median baseline (1st, 3rd quartile)]ng/ml in controls, 0.0075 (0.00475, 0.014) ng/ml in stable angina, 0.011(0.006, 0.012) ng/ml in unstable angina and 0.3715 (0.1795, 1.00725) ng/ml in NSTEMI ACS. TnI II levels were 0 (0, 0.001) ng/ml in controls and in patients with stable angina, 0.07 (0.005, 0.014) ng/ml in unstable angina and 1.4475 (0.0407, 2.656) ng/ml in NSTEMI. HsTNT and TnI II levels were significantly increased in NSTEMI as compared to control subjects, patients with stable and unstable angina. TnI II levels were also increased in unstable angina as compared to controls. Conclusion: In our population, TnI II was more sensitive than hsTNT to detect minor myocardial damage in patients with unstable angina as compared to controls. Therefore, future studies will have to determine whether TnI II might contribute to better risk stratification and treatment strategy in this group of patients. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessment of insulin resistance in vivo: application to the study of type 2 diabetes.
Scheen, André ULg; Lefebvre, Pierre ULg

in Hormone Research (1992), 38(1-2), 19-27

Besides insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity plays a key role in the feedback glucose-insulin closed loop. It can be altered in numerous physiological, pathological and pharmacological conditions. It ... [more ▼]

Besides insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity plays a key role in the feedback glucose-insulin closed loop. It can be altered in numerous physiological, pathological and pharmacological conditions. It can be estimated in vivo using methods that open the feedback loop (insulin suppression test, glucose clamp) or that analyze the closed loop by employing mathematical models of glucose kinetics. The most popular method is the euglycemic hyperinsulinemic glucose clamp. This test should be ideally coupled with a priming-constant infusion of a glucose tracer together with indirect calorimetry. This combination allows to study the glucose kinetics (Ra and Rd, and thus endogenous-mainly hepatic-glucose production) and its metabolism (oxidation or storage as glycogen), respectively. One alternative approach is the frequently sampled intravenous glucose tolerance test where the dynamic changes in plasma insulin and glucose levels are analyzed using the so-called 'minimal model' method. Noninsulin-dependent or type 2 diabetes is characterized by a significant defect in both insulin secretion and action. The insulin resistance is located at the liver site (increased glucose production) and at the peripheral tissues (decreased oxidation and, even more, defective storage of glucose in the muscles). This insulin resistance, which predominates at the postreceptor level, seems to be genetically determined but is worsened by weight excess and by hyperglycemia itself. This contributes to a vicious circle which aggravates progressively the severity of the disease. [less ▲]

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See detailAn assessment of interactions between global health initiatives and country health systems.
World Health Organization Maximizing Positive Synergies Collaborative Group; Porignon, Denis ULg

in Lancet (2009), 373(9681), 2137-69

Since 2000, the emergence of several large disease-specific global health initiatives (GHIs) has changed the way in which international donors provide assistance for public health. Some critics have ... [more ▼]

Since 2000, the emergence of several large disease-specific global health initiatives (GHIs) has changed the way in which international donors provide assistance for public health. Some critics have claimed that these initiatives burden health systems that are already fragile in countries with few resources, whereas others have asserted that weak health systems prevent progress in meeting disease-specific targets. So far, most of the evidence for this debate has been provided by speculation and anecdotes. We use a review and analysis of existing data, and 15 new studies that were submitted to WHO for the purpose of writing this Report to describe the complex nature of the interplay between country health systems and GHIs. We suggest that this Report provides the most detailed compilation of published and emerging evidence so far, and provides a basis for identification of the ways in which GHIs and health systems can interact to mutually reinforce their effects. On the basis of the findings, we make some general recommendations and identify a series of action points for international partners, governments, and other stakeholders that will help ensure that investments in GHIs and country health systems can fulfil their potential to produce comprehensive and lasting results in disease-specific work, and advance the general public health agenda. The target date for achievement of the health-related Millennium Development Goals is drawing close, and the economic downturn threatens to undermine the improvements in health outcomes that have been achieved in the past few years. If adjustments to the interactions between GHIs and country health systems will improve efficiency, equity, value for money, and outcomes in global public health, then these opportunities should not be missed. [less ▲]

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See detailThe assessment of job satisfaction for the Healthcare providers in University Clinics of Lubumbashi, D.R.Congo
Mundongo Tshamba, Henri; Van Caillie, Didier ULg; Kaj Malonga, Françoise et al

in Panafrican Medical Journal (2014), 2014

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