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Your Environment. Your Health.

NIEHS WTP: October 12, 2018 Newsbrief

Weekly E-Newsbrief, October 12, 2018

Weekly E-Newsbrief

October 12, 2018

The E-Newsbrief of the National Clearinghouse is a free weekly newsletter focusing on new developments in the world of worker health and safety. Each issue provides summaries of the latest worker health and safety news from newspapers, magazines, journals, government reports, and the Web, along with links to the original documents. Also featured each week are updates from government agencies that handle hazmat and worker safety issues such as DOE, EPA, OSHA and others.

Subscribing to the National Clearinghouse Newsbrief is the best way to stay on top of the worker health and safety news.

Top StoriesBack to Top

APHA-Occupational Health and Safety Section Webinar: Preventing and Reducing Opioids Use and Exposure in the Workplace

Co-sponsored by the NIEHS WTP and the Mount Sinai Selikoff Centers for Occupational Health, this webinar will discuss the opioid epidemic and review strategies for prevention of occupational exposure. The webinar will discuss development of workplace programs and training to prevent opioid abuse and addiction, and increase access to treatment and recovery resources for workers with opioid use disorder. The webinar will be held on October 17, 2018, from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET.

Webinar Information and Registration

Hurricane Michael: Where the Storm Is Now, What We Know About the Damage

One of the most powerful hurricanes in American history has moved off land, leaving a trail of destruction. Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle as a Category 4 hurricane with 155 mph winds. As of 6:30 p.m. on October 11, the U.S. Coast Guard had rescued about 40 people and assisted 232 others, including 142 nursing home patients, according to a news release. Response teams were also working to remove roadway debris to clear paths for emergency services. The recovery in Florida will take time – especially in Mexico Beach, where Michael made landfall.

USA Today

This Hanford Waste Is So Nasty It’s Kept Under 13 Feet of Water. Feds Say It Needs More Time to Deal with It

The Department of Energy (DOE) will have until August 2025 to move highly radioactive capsules from underwater storage in a concrete pool at the Hanford nuclear reservation. The new legal deadline announced was set despite the concerns of the Tri-City Development Council, the Oregon Department of Energy, and Hanford Communities, a coalition of Tri-City area local governments. Each submitted comments to DOE and its regulators saying the capsules holding radioactive cesium and strontium should be moved to dry storage as soon as possible.

Tri-City Herald [Author: Annette Cary]

Ebola Continues to Ravage Northeastern Congo

Ebola virus disease has sickened 188 people and killed 118 in the Democratic Republic of Congo's northeastern region, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported. Of the total cases, 153 have been confirmed, and 35 are probable. Fifty-one people have survived the disease, according to WHO, the United Nations' public health division. According to Dr. Peter Salama, WHO's deputy director-general of emergency preparedness and response, fifty-two patients have received experimental Ebola treatments during this outbreak.

CNN [Author: Susan Scutti]

Major Climate Report Describes a Strong Risk of Crisis as Early as 2040

A landmark report from the United Nations’ scientific panel on climate change paints a far more dire picture of the immediate consequences of climate change than previously thought and says that avoiding the damage requires transforming the world economy at a speed and scale that has “no documented historic precedent.” The report, issued this week by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, describes a world of worsening food shortages and wildfires, and a mass die-off of coral reefs as soon as 2040 — a period well within the lifetime of much of the global population.

The New York Times [Author: Coral Davenport]

IPCC Report

Calendar FeaturesBack to Top

California Department of Public Health Webinar: Improvement Actions to Mitigate Health Effects of Wildfire Toxic Air Emissions

Sponsored by the California Department of Public Health Environmental Health Laboratory Emergency Preparedness Unit (CDPH-EHL-EPU), this is the third and final webinar in a series to examine risks and short- and long-term health effects from emissions of toxic chemicals from wildfires. It will focus on actions to improve personal protection, information-sharing, decision-making, and public education on chemical hazards. The webinar will be held on October 17, 2018, from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. PT/ 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. ET.

Webinar Information and Registration

CDC Webinar: Hurricane Recovery

Hurricanes can have long-lasting effects. After the storm, affected communities may deal with challenging physical, mental, emotional, and environmental consequences. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) are hosting this webinar to discuss hurricane recovery and the health issues and mental health concerns that may linger after a hurricane. The webinar will be held on October 17, 2018, at 1:00 p.m. ET.

Webinar Information

Rutgers SPH Webinar: Motivational Leadership to Advance Occupational Health and Safety

Effective leadership is required in the dynamic field of occupational health and safety with its changing regulations, client demands, and implementation of best practices. This webinar, sponsored by Rutgers School of Public Health (SPH) Center for Public Health Workforce Development, will discuss how environmental health and safety leaders can learn new ways to go beyond technical competency, and inspire other members in their organizations to act as 'change agents' to reduce worker illnesses and injuries. The webinar will be held October 18, 2018, from 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET.

Webinar Registration

NLM Webinar: Sharing & Management of Disaster Related Data

This National Library of Medicine (NLM) Disaster Information Specialist monthly webinar will look at how managing and sharing data have become important issues in the context of research data. When it comes to disaster-related data, time is of the essence. Data must also be shared with the appropriate stakeholders to get information out to everyone who needs it, when they need it. This webinar will discuss best practices for data management and data sharing and how they apply to disaster-related data. The webinar will be held October 18, 2018, at 1:30 p.m. ET.

Webinar Information and Registration

COSH Webinar: Lessons from Harvey, Irma, and Maria, and Efforts to Protect Workers

A Protecting Workers Alliance webinar, hosted by the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (COSH), will focus on efforts to protect workers after the storms. After a series of devastating storms, participants will hear about lessons from post storm clean-up; learn how past experiences are being put to work in the Carolinas; and discuss policy and training needs and opportunities, in a climate-changed world. The webinar will be held on Thursday, October 18, 2018, at 2:00 p.m. ET/ 11:00 a.m. PT.

Webinar Registration

DOL/ HHS Webinar: Implications of Substance/ Opioid Misuse and Addiction for the Workforce Development System

Drug overdoses killed about 72,000 Americans in 2017, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Workforce development professionals must have increasingly greater awareness of the issue and its impact on employer partners as well as on workforce service delivery. This webinar, sponsored by the Department of Labor and the Department of Health and Human Services, will discuss federal efforts to support communities in addressing these challenges. It will be held on Thursday, October 18, 2018, from 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. ET.

Webinar Information and Registration

On The Web This WeekBack to Top

CPWR: Safety Training Materials May Be Too Technical for Some Construction Workers

About one-third of construction worker training materials are written above an eighth-grade reading level – which goes against the recommendation of many communication experts – according to a recent report from the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR). After reviewing 103 safety training handouts, brochures, and Safety Data Sheets, researchers found several of the materials contained technical language or other unfamiliar terminology. To correct this issue, the researchers issued a number of recommendations. The study was published online Aug. 26 in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine (AJIM).

Safety and Health Magazine

CPWR: Key Findings

AJIM Study

Aging, Worker Training Initiatives Get Advisory Council Nod

As Hurricane Florence loomed in the Atlantic, the National Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council worked diligently to complete its tasks. The agenda included a public session with presentations on worker training and the impacts of disasters on the elderly. Following the session, the panel approved a new program called Environmental Influences on Aging: Effects of Extreme Weather and Disaster Events on Aging Populations and Aging Processes and supported the proposal to upgrade the NIEHS WTP.

Environmental Factor [Author: Ernie Hood]

Mortality and Health Outcomes in North Carolina Communities Located Close to Hog Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations

People living near concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) in southeastern North Carolina have poorer health outcomes for a range of health conditions than those who live further afield from the facilities. A new study finds North Carolina communities located near hog CAFOs had higher all-cause and infant mortality, due to anemia, kidney disease, tuberculosis, septicemia, and higher hospital admissions visits of low birth weight infants. Although not establishing causality with exposures from hog CAFOs, findings support the need for future studies to determine factors that influence these outcomes.

North Carolina Medical Journal [Authors: Kravchenko et al.]

Federal Agency UpdateBack to Top

Resources on Hurricane Response

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Disaster Information Management Research Center (DIMRC) contains information on hurricane and flood health guides, resources from MedlinePlus, resources from federal agencies and more.

DIMRC Resources

NIOSH Science Blog: How to Quickly Code Industry and Occupation Data

It can be daunting turning survey information from thousands of people into something useful. Typically, each survey respondent has a different job or may work in a different industry. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) designed and launched a software application that takes descriptive information fields and gives them a standardized numeric code. The NIOSH software application, called The NIOSH Industry and Occupation Computerized Coding System (NIOCCS), is a free, web-based software application that translates industry and occupation text to standardized industry and occupation codes.

NIOSH Science Blog [Authors: Stacey Marovich, Susan Nowlin, and Amy Mobley]

Chemical Management Consolidated Chemical User Safety and Health Requirements

This Department of Energy (DOE) handbook consolidates existing core safety and health requirements that all sites engaged in chemical-related activities must follow when applicable and when no exemptions have been granted. The handbook aims to eliminate the confusion of overlapping and/or duplicative chemical-related safety and health requirements.

DOE Handbook

Awardee Highlights/Online LearningBack to Top

Recording of Work Injuries and Opioid Addiction Webinar Available

Hosted by the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (COSH), this webinar focuses on current data and research of the opioid crisis, innovative peer and training solutions, information on how to help workers get the right treatment, and information on local and national COSH opioid efforts and ways to get involved.


Critical Role of Public Health Programs in Responding to Natural Disasters

A Trust for America's Health fact sheet details the role of public health and healthcare systems in disaster preparations and recovery. It provides actions to take in risk communications and incident management, infectious disease prevention, injury prevention, environmental health and exposure to contaminants, healthcare preparedness and response, and mental and behavioral health.

Trust for America’s Health

Ebola Documentary Film

Through the eyes of two Sierra Leoneans, Survivors presents an intimate portrait of the country during the Ebola outbreak, exposing the complexity of the epidemic and the turmoil that lies in its wake. Survivors provides unique access into the outbreak, providing an account of the health catastrophe's political and personal ramifications.


Job OpeningsBack to Top

CDPH Seeks Assistant Deputy Director

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Center for Healthy Communities is recruiting for a leadership position to guide programs, policy, and research on environmental and occupational health. The Assistant Deputy Director serves as the medical/public health administrator overseeing Center programs in environmental and occupational health, including Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention, Environmental Health Investigations, Environmental Health Laboratory, and Occupational Health – and a cross-branch Emergency Preparedness Team. The position is permanent, full-time and located in Richmond, CA.

Job Description and Application

MDPH Seeks Director of Occupational Health Surveillance Program

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) is seeking an experienced occupational health professional to lead the Occupational Health Surveillance Program (OHSP), a nationally renowned state program that conducts surveillance and prevention activities. The Director of OHSP has lead responsibility within MDPH for overseeing the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data to identify priority occupational health concerns. The Director will also be in charge of tracking emerging issues and trends related to workers’ health, and fostering internal and external collaborations.

Job Description

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