Topics A to Z

As part of NEHA's continuos effort to provide convenient access to information and resources, we have gathered together for you the links in this section. Our mission is "to advance the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all,” as well as to educate and inform those outside the profession.

This session provides an overview of the EU Industrial Emission Directive currently being implemented to avoid or minimize polluting emissions in the atmosphere, water, and soil, as well as waste from industrial and agricultural installations, with the aim of achieving a high level of environmental and health protection. Permit structures, industry requirements and inspection processes are covered. Presenters discuss the use of Best Available Techniques (BAT) and their application as a reference tool far beyond the EU.

July 2014
Henning Hansen
Potential CE Credits: 1.00
Additional Topics A to Z: General Environmental Health

The Private Well Class is designed to provide homeowners an understanding of the basic science of water wells, well maintenance and groundwater protection. The innovative, ten-lesson class is delivered by email, supplemented by webinars, and is self-directed. This session will cover the success of this program, which has had over 2,700 participants in the first year. Hear how sanitarians are using this class in their work with well owners and how you could utilize this free resource!

July 2015
Steven Wilson, MS
Potential CE Credits: 0.50

Article Abstract

Since 2000, resurgence in bed bugs has occurred in the U.S. Reports of infestations of homes, hospitals, hotels, and offices have been described. On September 1, 2011, complaints of itching and bites among workers in an office were reported to the Tennessee Department of Health. A retrospective cohort study and environmental assessments were performed in response to the complaints. Canines certified to detect live bed bugs were used to inspect the office and arthropod samples were collected. Of 76 office workers, 61 (80%) were interviewed; 39 (64%) met the case definition. Pruritic maculopapular lesions were consistent with arthropod bites. One collected arthropod sample was identified as a bed bug by three entomologists. Exposures associated with symptoms included working in a cubicle in which a canine identified bed bugs (risk ratio [RR]: 1.8; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.3–3.6), and self-reported seasonal allergies (RR: 1.6, 95% CI: 1.0–2.4). Bed bugs represent a reemerging and challenging environmental problem with clinical, psychological, and financial impacts.

April 2014
76.8 | 16-18
Jane A. Gwira Baumblatt, MD, John R. Dunn, DVM, PhD, William Schaffner, MD, Abelardo C. Moncayo, PhD
Additional Topics A to Z: Vectors and Pests

Abstract

Though local health department performance of restaurant inspections plays an important role in preventing foodborne illness, restaurant inspection quality and uniformity often varies across local health department jurisdictions and among employees. In 2012, the Cincinnati Health Department initiated a food safety staff quality improvement initiative. This initiative, part of a Food and Drug Administration national training standards grant initiative, featured standardized training and food safety workforce practices, defined food safety program data collection standards, and refined reporting protocols. The aim of this article was to explore the relationship between the Ohio food safety code violations incurred and the risk classifications to which a Cincinnati food service operation belongs (ranked I–IV based upon potential threat to public safety). A random intercept model was selected to quantify the difference in odds between risk classification categories of incurring violations. Additionally, longitudinal data analysis tracked violation trends across the three years of the study. Main findings were 1) the odds of receiving a food safety violation increased with each year and 2) food establishments categorized as risk class IV had a higher odds of receiving a food safety violation compared with the other risk classifications.

 

January 2018
January/February 2018
80.6 | 14-18
Patrick Chang, MPH, Department of Biostatistics, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, Haresh Rochani, DrPH, Department of Biostatistics, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, William A. Mase, DrPH, Department of Health Policy and Management, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, Jeffery A. Jones, PhD, Department of Health Policy and Management, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University

This presentation introduces the model behavior change strategy used to reduce the number of illnesses and days missed by both staff and children in child care centers. Hear how an FDA Retail Food Safety grant was used to increase Active Managerial Controls implementation for the BIG 5 risk factors for foodborne illness. Lessons learned and results of the first full year of Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department's Retail Food Safety Consultant program will be shared.

July 2015
Scott Holmes, MS, REHS/RS
Potential CE Credits: 1.00
Additional Topics A to Z: Children's Environmental Health

Abstract

Exposure limits for arsenic in drinking water and minimal risk levels (MRLs) for total dietary exposure to arsenic have long been established in the U.S. Multiple studies conducted over the last five years have detected arsenic in foods and beverages including juice, rice, milk, broth (beef and chicken), and others. Understanding whether or not each of these foods or drinks is a concern to certain groups of individuals requires examining which types of and how much arsenic is ingested. In this article, recent studies are reviewed and placed in the context of consumption patterns. When single sources of food or drink are considered in isolation, heavy rice eaters can be exposed to the most arsenic among adults while infants consuming formula containing contaminated organic brown rice syrup are the most exposed group among children. Most food and drink do not contain sufficient arsenic to exceed MRLs. For individuals consuming more than one source of contaminated water or food, however, adverse health effects are more likely. In total, recent studies on arsenic contamination in food and beverages emphasize the need for individual consumers to understand and manage their total dietary exposure to arsenic.

October 2015
78.3 | 8-14
Denise Wilson
Additional Topics A to Z: Hazardous Materials

Abstract

Recent studies that have investigated arsenic content in juice, rice, milk, broth (beef and chicken), and other foods have stimulated an interest in understanding how prevalent arsenic contamination is in the U.S. food and beverage supply. The study described here focuses on quantifying arsenic levels in wine. A total of 65 representative wines from the top four wine-producing states in the U.S. were analyzed for arsenic content. All samples contained arsenic levels that exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) exposure limit for drinking water of 10 parts per billion (ppb) and all samples contained inorganic arsenic. The average arsenic detected among all samples studied was 23.3 ppb. Lead, a common co-contaminant to arsenic, was detected in 58% of samples tested, but only 5% exceeded the U.S. EPA exposure limit for drinking water of 15 ppb. Arsenic levels in American wines exceeded those found in other studies involving water, bottled water, apple juice, apple juice blend, milk, rice syrup, and other beverages. When taken in the context of consumption patterns in the U.S., the pervasive presence of arsenic in wine can pose a potential health risk to regular adult wine drinkers.

October 2015
78.3 | 16-22
Denise Wilson
Additional Topics A to Z: Hazardous Materials

Public wells in the United States are regularly tested for arsenic, but private wells typically are not. However, when arsenic was found in 47% of wells tested in Iowa in 2008, a case study was designed to determine the source. This pilot study in Cerro Gordo County tests 29 parameters of wells and maps them against their depth and source aquifers. See which factors are associated with arsenic contamination in groundwater, recommendations for avoiding contamination, and how researchers, public health officials, and private wells drillers built a successful team to serve the homeowners for this serious threat.

July 2015
Douglas Schnoebelen, PhD; Sophia Walsh
Potential CE Credits: 1.00

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