December 2021 | Issue 4

BRAC James P Grant School of Public Health (JPGSPH) NEWSLETTER


December 2021 was a significant month as it marks the second year since the passing of Sir Fazle Hasan Abed KCMG (1936-2019), in addition to the 50th Anniversary of Bangladesh’s victory in the Liberation War of 1971.

Under the leadership of Sir Fazle Hasan Abed KCMG, BRAC JPGSPH was founded in 2004 to address the unmet public health challenges particular to Asia, Africa and South America. Sir Abed’s vision for BRAC University included the provision of education of the highest quality in the field of public health. Through the combined resources of BRAC and other similar institutions and partners, this vision became a reality through the establishment of the BRAC JPGSPH.

BRAC JPGSPH builds capacity and contributes to Public Health by creating innovative public health leaders and solutions through cutting-edge, experiential Education, Training, Research and Advocacy. The aim is to enable public health leaders, practitioners, critical thinkers, researchers, advocates, and stewards in order to enable concrete changes to improve the lives of disadvantaged populations locally, regionally and internationally.


This newsletter covers activities between October-December 2021

Key Highlights of 2021

Education


Master of Public Health Programme (MPH) & Diploma in Midwifery Programme (DMP)

17th Master of Public Health (MPH) Cohort:
19
International and 24 National Students


Developing Midwives Project (DMP):
225
Students Enrolled and 231 Graduated in 2021

Training


Centre for Professional Skills Development in Public Health (CPSD)

38 Skills Building Seminars and Workshops

600+ Professionals Trained

Research


Bringing Evidence to Practice

30 New Multi-Country Research Projects Undertaken

85 Peer-Reviewed Publications and 3 Book Chapters Published

Advocacy


To Influence Programmes and Policies

126+ Active Engagements with Stakeholders to Influence Programmes and Policies

68 News Articles and 10 Blogs.

IN THE NEWS

Toolkit Available: Participatory Health Research with two methodology case studies from ARISE Bangladesh | BRAC JPGSPH colleagues as contributors


BRAC JPGSPH colleagues and ARISE Bangladesh representatives Wafa Alam, Assistant Coordinator; and Imran Hossain Mithu, Research Associate, have co-authored two methodology case studies in this toolkit put together by different projects at Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM), including ARISE Hub.

Date: November 2021

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Webinar on Gender & COVID-19 Research Agenda Setting in the Asia Pacific: Vaccinations


As part of the Gender and COVID-19 Research Agenda-setting process, the Gender & Health Hub at the United Nations University International Institute for Global Health (UNU-IIGH) and the School of Public Health at the University of the Western Cape (SOPH-UWC) hosted a webinar on Gender & COVID-19 Research Agenda Setting in the Asia Pacific: Vaccinations.

Date: 21 October 2021

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Violence against young women and girls with disabilities: An everyday affair


Worldwide, young women and girls with disabilities face up to 10 times more violence than women and girls without disabilities, and Bangladesh is no exception.

Date: 10 December 2021

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Bangladesh Health Watch (BHW) in collaboration with Bloodman develops a video addressing the psycho social well being of school children due to the COVID-19 lockdown


Date: November 2021

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Paper by BRAC JPGSPH Researchers from a Rohingya research project awarded with the Outstanding Paper Award.


The paper titled 'Ethics and Methods for Collecting Sensitive Data: Examining Sexual and Reproductive Health Needs of and Services for Rohingya Refugees at Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh' was featured in the Spring 2020 issue (volume 4, number 2), of the International Journal of Information, Diversity, & Inclusion (IJIDI).

Date: 8 December 2021

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Conflict, extremism, resilience and peace in South Asia; can covid-19 provide a bridge for peace and rapprochement?


This peer-reviewed article talks about a new 4-point approach for promoting peace in South Asia, using COVID-19 as an opportunity. Dr Mushtaque Chowdhury, Founding Dean of BRAC JPGSPH, is one of the authors.

Date: 15 November 2021

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Announcements

Professor Zahidul Quayyum selected as a member of Country Core Group (CCG) of National Coordination of Pandemic Responses Collaborative


Professor Zahidul Quayyum, Director, Research and Co-Director, Centre of Excellence for Urban Equity and Health (CUEH), BRAC JPGSPH has been selected as a member of Country Core Group (CCG) of National Coordination of Pandemic Responses Collaborative under Bangladesh Joint Learning Network for Universal Health Coverage (JLN) and the Health Systems Strengthening Accelerator project.

Professor Malabika Sarker chosen as an Evaluation Advisory Committee Member of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance


Professor Malabika Sarker, Associate Dean and Director, Centre of Excellence for Science of Implementation and Scale-Up (CoE-SISU), BRAC JPGSPH has been appointed as a member of the Evaluation Advisory Committee (EAC) of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, effective from 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2023.

Blog by Professor Syed Masud Ahmed featured in Feedspot Top 20 Bangladesh Health Blogs on the web


The blog Bangladesh Health Scenario, by Professor Syed Masud Ahmed, Director of Centre of Excellence for Health Systems and Universal Health Coverage (CoE-HS&UHC), BRAC JPGSPH has been selected by feedspot.com as one of the Top 20 Bangladesh Health Blogs on the web.

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Education

| Master of Public Health (MPH) Programme & Diploma in Midwifery Programme (DMP)

The Master of Public Health (MPH) Programme at BRAC JPGSPH is a one-year full-time programme that offers transformative public health learning to develop next-generation public health leaders for 21st century public health challenges. The locus of the MPH programme is its experiential community immersive teaching through rigorous urban and rural fieldwork. Since its inception in 2005, there have been over 562 MPH graduates from 34 countries.

17TH MPH COHORT ONLINE CLASS OF 2021


13 Countries around the world

19 International and 24 National Students

3 Modules Completed Online between October-December 2021

  • MPH 541: Environment, Health and Climate Change
  • Respectful Maternity Care (Solution Project under 'MPH 660: Gender Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights' Module)
  • MPH 700: Summative Learning Project (SLP)
Learn More about the Modules For More Information on the MPH Programme, Click Here

HIGHLIGHTS

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"Online learning has ushered in even more innovations to the class. It’s fun to be in a class with people attending from different time zones."

Dr Tahmeed Ahmed

Executive Director, icddr,b

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"I always enjoy teaching BRAC JPGSPH MPH students, even through the online format. Their diverse experiences and perspectives bring so much richness to the course that the students are as much the teacher as I am!"

Ashley Styczynski

Infectious Disease Fellow, Department of Medicine, Stanford University, California
Guest Resource Person, Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases, BRAC JPGSPH

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BRAC JPGSPH featured as One of the Top Six Public Health Schools in the region by World Health Organization in 2007

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In 2020 the School was featured by Johns Hopkins University's newsletter as one of the Top Schools in the Region

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Transformative Competency-based Public Health Education for Professional Employability in Bangladesh’s Health Sector

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562

Graduates from 34 Countries Since 2005

40

Experiential Urban and Rural Field Sites in 13 Districts in 2019

13

International Visiting Faculty

98

National Faculty and Practitioners

DIPLOMA IN MIDWIFERY PROGRAMME (DMP): ONLINE 2021

BRAC JPGSPH, BRAC University introduced the Diploma in Midwifery side by side with the Government in 2012. This innovative educational initiative, which is co-funded by the UK government and BRAC, is the first of its kind in the private sector of Bangladesh. The 6th and 7th batches of DMP have continued studying from their residence, through virtual platforms. On an average, 79% and 99% students attended live and recorded classes respectively. The education team has also continued preparatory studies for both internal and first year final public examination on 13 modules for 7th batch students. In March 2021, students of the 7th batch sat for the public exam of Bangladesh Nursing and Midwifery Council (BNMC). The faculty took online exams for preparation purposes. Since September 2021, all 7 academic sites have resumed.

393 Students from 6th and 7th batches of the Midwifery programme are continuing with their studies

231 Midwives successfully graduated in 2021

DMP Activities between October-December 2021

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Enrollment of new batch of DMP students: Welcome Ceremony and Commencement of Academic Activities

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Faculty Development Training

Date: 28 October 2021

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Session on Professionalism and Self-Care with the students of 6th DMP batch

Date: 9 November 2021

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Anti-Bullying Workshop with 8th DMP batch

Date: 24 November 2021

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Observing the 16 Days of Activism

Date: 2 December 2021

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Observing International Universal Health Coverage Day 2021

Date: 12 December 2021

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1478

Students Enrolled in the Midwifery Programme since inception

833

Graduates in Midwifery Professions since inception

195

Students received Financial Aid to attend Midwifery Education

137

Midwives are serving at the Rohingya Refugee Camps in Cox’s Bazar

TRAINING

| Centre for Professional Skills Development in Public Health (CPSD)

The School’s international training hub established in 2007, Centre for Professional Skills Development in Public Health (CPSD) strengthens and upgrades the requisite professional skills utilised by practitioners, policymakers, development partners, government officials, public advocates, faculty, researchers and frontline health workers.

17 Skills building training and workshops conducted between October-December 2021

HIGHLIGHTS

Skills Building Training and Workshops between October-December 2021

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Workshop on the lessons learned from the “Synthesis and Translation of Research and Innovation in Polio Eradication” project

Date: 23 October 2021

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Training on Safeguarding and, Protection against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA)

Date: 26 October 2021

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Training on the World Health Organization (WHO) Package of Essential Non-communicable Diseases (PEN) Interventions in Cox’s Bazar

Date: 8 November 2021 - 15 December 2021

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Training on Behavioural Change Communications (BCC)

Date: 30 November - 1 December 2021

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Skill Development Training of Writing Opinion Columns

Date: 2 December 2021 and 6 December 2021

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Participatory Workshop conducted on Social Innovation Monitoring and Evaluation

Date: 14 December 2021

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CENTRE FOR PROFESSIONAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT (CPSD) AIMS TO PROVIDE


  • Practical skill based training to address relevant public health priorities and needs
  • Codesign critical competencies for professional trainings to ensure relevant capabilities are developed
  • Interactive teaching and learning
  • Innovative tools for in-person, field-based and online learning
  • Participant centred learning to promote critical thinking
  • Immersive learning by visits to field sites rural urban communities, health facilities (public, NGOs, private) and organisations (public, NGOs, private)
  • Diverse expert facilitators: practitioners, policy makers and multi sectoral actors (i.e., government, NGOs, INGOs, civil society, private sector)
  • Solution oriented thinking to address practical ‘Real World’ challenges

Training Activities (2020)

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Training Activities (2021)

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228+

Skills Building Seminars and Workshops since inception

321+

Global Facilitators since inception

6800+

Professionals Trained since inception

RESEARCH

| Bringing Evidence to Practice

The School's Five Centres of Excellence and a Humanitarian Research Hub (2018) aim to investigate pressing and emerging public health issues to improve the lives of the most disadvantaged populations.

30 New Multi-Country Research Projects Undertaken

8 Multi-Country Research Projects between October-December 2021

5 Research Centres of Excellence

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The Centre of Excellence for Gender, Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (CGSRHR)

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The Centre of Excellence for Health Systems and Universal Health Coverage (CoE-HS&UHC)

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The Centre of Excellence for Urban Equity and Health (CUEH)

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The Centre of Excellence for the Science of Implementation and Scale-Up (CoE-SISU)

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The Centre of Excellence for Non-Communicable Diseases and Nutrition (CNCDN)

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Humanitarian Research Hub

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RESEARCH AT THE SCHOOL FOCUSES ON


  • Investigating pressing and emerging public health issues to improve the lives of the most disadvantaged populations
  • A team of 231 faculty and researchers from diverse disciplinary backgrounds and professions
  • Dedicated five centres of excellence and humanitarian research hub with a proven track record and in-depth insights
  • Transforming evidence into action for change
  • Combining grounded research and analysis to inform government, key stakeholders (i.e., non-governmental organisations, international agencies), civil society and donors
  • Extensive global and national partnerships and networks
  • Providing evidence to support programmes and policies nationally and globally

RECENT RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

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Clinical Impact and Economic Features of a Community Health Worker-Led Low-Sodium Salt Intervention to Reduce Blood Pressure at the Population Level in Rural Bangladesh: A Cluster-Randomized Trial

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Capacity Strengthening of Urban Health System Actors under the Community-led Responsive and Effective Urban Health Systems (CHORUS) Project

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Operational Research Report submission under 'Disrupting Cross Border Trafficking in Jashore' Project

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Consultation Meeting on Package of Essential Non-communicable Diseases Interventions for Primary Health Care Providers in Cox's Bazar District

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Feasibility of implementing Trauma Registry and Trauma Systems Improvement Programme in four District Hospitals of Bangladesh with high road traffic injury (RTI) burden

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Meetings at the office of the Secretary of the Ministry of Food and the office of the Director-General of The Food Planning and Monitoring Unit (FPMU)

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  • Research (2020 & 2021)

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  • COVID-19 Research (2020 & 2021)

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85 Peer-Reviewed Publications, including 3 Book Chapters between January-December 2021

14 Peer-Reviewed Publications, including 1 International Book Chapter between October-December 2021

PEER-REVIEWED PUBLICATIONS HIGHLIGHTS

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Food system concepts and definitions for science and political action

Date: 15 September 2021

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Reactions to the media coverage during the first wave of COVID-19 in Bangladesh

Date: 6 October 2021

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Fidelity of kangaroo mother care services in the public health facilities in Bangladesh: a cross-sectional mixed-method study

Date: 9 October 2021

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‘You want to deal with power while riding on power’: global perspectives on power in participatory health research and co-production approaches

Date: 11 November 2021

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The effect of zinc-biofortified rice on zinc status of Bangladeshi pre-school children: a randomized, double-masked, household-based controlled trial

Date: 18 November 2021

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Mandatory employer-sponsored health financing scheme for semiformal workers in Bangladesh: An experimental assessment

Date: 20 November 2021

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  • Peer-Reviewed Publications (2020 & 2021)

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  • COVID-19 Research Briefs (2020 & 2021)

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280+

Research Projects since 2005

45

COVID-19 Research Projects since 2020

768+

Peer-Reviewed Publications since inception

121+

Global and Local Partners and Networks

ADVOCACY

| To Influence Programmes and Policies

BRAC JPGSPH believes in advocating to impact programme design and policies, closely engaging with government, key stakeholders (i.e., non-government organisations, international agencies), civil society and donors to push agendas of national and global importance. All research evidence undertaken by the School have to influence policy and programmes as part of their key mandate.

22+ Active engagements between October-December 2021

HIGHLIGHTS

Activity to create awareness between October-December 2021

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Dissemination Event: COVID-19 Awareness, Preparedness and Impact on the Most Vulnerable Groups among Rohingya and Host Communities in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh

Date: 30 November 2021

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Dissemination Event: Assessment of Post-Crash Care in Bangladesh

Date: 11 December 2021

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2nd Annual Health Campaign Effectiveness (HCE) Meeting

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Effective Solid Waste Management can Alleviate the severity of Waterlogging Situation in Dhaka

The unplanned growth of Dhaka city over the years has resulted in many negative outcomes, one of which is waterlogging.

Date: 26 October 2021 in Dhaka Tribune

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Global Footprint: BRAC JPGSPH Representative attends 'Tenth Global Conference on Health Promotion (10GCHP): Well-being, equity and sustainable development'

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Global Footprint: Podcast-Life in the times of coronavirus: A gendered perspective

LISTEN TO THE PODCAST HERE

BANGLADESH HEALTH WATCH (BHW): A CIVIL SOCIETY NETWORK HOUSED AT BRAC JPGSPH

Established in 2006, Bangladesh Health Watch (BHW), a multi-stakeholder civil society advocacy and monitoring network is dedicated to improving the health system in Bangladesh through a critical review of policies, programmes and recommendation of appropriate actions for change. BRAC JPGSPH serves as the Secretariat for BHW, since its inception. Amongst the working group members, The School representatives include the Dean, the Founding Dean and the Director of Centre for Health Systems Research.

Activity to Create Awareness between October-December 2021

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Workshop: ‘Effective Health Reporting’

Bangladesh Health Watch and Bangladesh Health Reporters’ Forum organised a workshop titled ‘Effective Health Reporting’. The in-person workshop took place at the Press Institute of Bangladesh (PIB).

Date: 12 December 2021

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Roundtable Discussion on Policy Forum Inventory Research

Bangladesh Health Watch (BHW) took an initiative to develop an inventory of policies formulated in the health sector in Bangladesh since its independence.

Date: 29 November 2021

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Citizen's Voice

BHW has created a platform where people can raise their voices and concerns related to health services. In collaboration with access to information(a2i), Directorate General of Health Services(DGHS) and Bloodman.

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Are we on the right track?

This article by Dr AM Zakir Hussain, Working Group Member of BHW, explores the current situation of COVID and Vaccination drive in Bangladesh.

Date: 20 November 2021

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Regional Chapter

Regional Chapter conducted field visits in Netrokona, Manikganj, which included meetings with the district health authorities, upazila health authorities, civil societies, Journalists, NGOs and youth forums.

Date: November 2021

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Public health care needs to be restructured

This article discusses the health outcome expectations, health achievements comparison with the allocations and expenditures made in the sector historically, and how, according to the author, health care in Bangladesh needs to be restructured for more efficacy.

Date: 16 December 2021

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THE SCHOOL'S AIM IS TO CONTINUALLY ENGAGE IN TRANSLATING RESEARCH EVIDENCE TO INFORM PROGRAMME AND POLICY INTERVENTIONS


  • Active engagement and creating change to improve the lives of the most disadvantaged populations
  • Continual stakeholder engagement with government, key stakeholders (i.e, non-governmental organisations, international agencies), Civil society and donors
  • Dedicated five centres of excellence and humanitarian research hub with a proven track record and in-depth insights
  • Strong networks of partnerships for advocacy: global, regional and national
  • To impact on programme design and policies
243+

Advocacy-based Events with Multi-Stakeholder Engagements since inception

50+

Webinars Related to COVID-19 since 2020

163+

News Articles and 30 New Blogs Posted since April 2020

Blogs (2019-2021)

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Advocacy To Influence Programmes & Policies
(2020 & 2021)

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