Partnerships for Environmental Public Health (PEPH)
Liam R. O'Fallon, M.A. (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/dert/phb/ofallon/index.cfm)
PEPH is a network of scientists, community members, educators, healthcare providers, public health officials, and policymakers who share the goal of increasing the impact of environmental public health research at the local, regional, and national level. PEPH defines environmental public health as the science of conducting and translating research into action to address environmental exposures and health risks of concern to the public.
Grantees: for information on how to access the PEPH Resource Center, please contact Liam O'Fallon or Lynn Albert. You can also visit the NIEHS Research Partners page ( http://partners.niehs.nih.gov/ ) to access the Resource Center and other NIEHS shared datasets and applications.
PEPH at APHA 2013
The PEPH community will be well represented at this year's American Public Health Association Annual Meeting (http://www.apha.org/meetings/AnnualMeeting/) (November 2-6, 2013) in Boston, Massachusetts. See the "PEPH at APHA (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/assets/docs/j_q/peph_at_apha_508.pdf) " listing to help you navigate the large conference and find sessions where PEPH grantees are speaking, moderating, or otherwise sharing their outcomes.
Building a Foundation for Ethical Community-Engaged Research
A new publication (http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/abs/10.2105/AJPH.2013.301605) provides community-based participatory research (CBPR) practitioners with a summary of the components, challenges, and strategies of ethical CBPR. Partially funded by the NIEHS, the review article provides a foundation for developing a working definition and conceptual model of ethical CBPR. This is the first comprehensive literature review on the topic. CBPR ethical principles are different from those in traditional health research because CBPR must protect the rights and well-being of both the individual and the community as a whole. Throughout the literature, the authors found that the principles that define ethical CBPR are synonymous with those that define CBPR itself, like close collaboration, trust, and joint ownership of data. This similarity between CBPR ethics and methods suggests that investigators need to engage in high-quality CBPR to ensure the ethics of their work. "CPBR has changed the ethical landscape of community health research and has made great strides in bringing research and community together, but we shouldn't assume that academic-community collaborations are upholding stringent ethical standards," said study authors Lisa Mikesell, Ph.D. (https://comminfo.rutgers.edu/directory/lisa-mikesell/index.html) , Elizabeth Bromley, M.D., Ph.D. (http://people.healthsciences.ucla.edu/institution/personnel?personnel_id=596444) , and Dmitry Khodyakov, Ph.D. (http://www.rand.org/about/people/k/khodyakov_dmitry.html) , who call attention to the need for measurable objectives or guidelines to ensure that CBPR is conducted to high standards.
The review was published online (http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/abs/10.2105/AJPH.2013.301605) ahead of print in the American Journal of Public Health.
Educational Modules Help Pediatricians Connect Children's Health and Environment
Getting people to understand the link between their environment and health can be a challenge, especially at the doctor's office. The Community Outreach and Engagement Core (COEC) (http://eh.uc.edu/ceg/coec/) at the University of Cincinnati Center for Environmental Genetics (CEG) (http://www.eh.uc.edu/ceg/) offers online Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) courses to help bridge the gap between pediatricians and nurses and environmental health issues. "Health care providers need to know about environmental triggers to disease and providing this information through CME/CNE is one viable option," said CEG COEC Director, Erin Haynes, Dr.P.H. (http://www.eh.uc.edu/dir_individual_details.asp?qcontactid=687) The "Pediatric Environmental Health" (http://eh.uc.edu/ceg/coec/community_modules.html) module discusses concepts of pediatric environmental health and describes health effects, like atopic diseases, associated with common environmental exposures. A second module, "Environmental Management of Pediatric Asthma,"(http://eh.uc.edu/ceg/coec/community_modules.html) provides a scientific overview of various environmental triggers of asthma in children and intervention strategies families can use to control environmental exposures at home. Teaching physicians and nurses how to ask environmental health history questions, such as "Where does your child spend his/her time?" or "What do the adults in the household do for a living?", often leads to answers that make a significant difference in the life of a child, said module author Nicholas Newman, D.O., M.S. (http://www.cincinnatichildrens.org/bio/N/nicholas-newman/)
The CEG COEC leveraged funds from NIEHS and the National Environmental Education Foundation (http://www.neefusa.org/) to develop and disseminate the modules, which are located on the CEG COEC's Educational Materials Web page. (http://eh.uc.edu/ceg/coec/community_modules.html)
The PEPH Evaluation Metrics Manual (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/programs/peph/metrics/index.cfm) provides examples of tangible metrics that PEPH grantees and program staff can use for both planning and evaluation. Example logic models are used as a means to develop evaluation metrics for cross-cutting PEPH themes such as Partnerships, Leveraging, Products and Dissemination, Education and Training and Capacity Building. PEPH grantees (including all project partners) are the primary target audience for this document.
Current Issue of the PEPH Newsletter (http://tools.niehs.nih.gov/pephnews/lists/currentissue.cfm)
In this issue of the PEPH Newsletter we share resources and research just as diverse as our PEPH community. Our feature this month: a new review article on the ethics of community-based participatory research, a cornerstone of much of the research and activities in our PEPH community. For those educating our youth about environmental health we share ATSDR's new website about making your school a mercury-safe zone; and PBS' Environmental Public Health Collection for K-12 teachers. For our colleagues working with Indigenous communities we point you towards two factsheets about ethical research partnerships, and a research opportunity with the CDC Tribal Support Unit that may be a great fit for you or a PEPH colleague.
Do you have an event or announcement to share with the PEPH community? Send us your news for the next issue of the PEPH Newsletter (firstname.lastname@example.org)!
PEPH Environmental Health Chat Podcast Series
This podcast series explores how environmental exposures affect our health. Each episode highlights ways researchers work with community groups to understand and address environmental health issues. Check out past podcasts on the PEPH Environmental Health Chat (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/dert/programs/peph/podcasts/index.cfm) Web page, or subscribe to the series on iTunes (https://itunes.apple.com/podcast/environmental-health-chat/id593495897?mt=2) . Examples of past podcasts:
- The Epigenome (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/dert/programs/peph/podcasts/epigenome/index.cfm)
- Environmental Health in the Nail Salon (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/dert/programs/peph/podcasts/nail_salon/index.cfm)
- Protecting Children from Contaminants at School (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/supported/dert/programs/peph/podcasts/school/index.cfm)
ATSDR Revamps the Don't Mess with Mercury Website
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) recently added new content to the "Don't Mess with Mercury (http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/dontmesswithmercury/index.html) " website. The website offers resources to help teachers and school professionals learn about mercury safety, how to clean up after a spill, and how to develop a mercury policy for their school. Students can test their "mercury IQ" by playing a game that quizzes them on mercury facts and safety, or explore an interactive human body that makes it easy to see the health effects of mercury on different parts of the body.
"Fast Facts" for Researchers Working with Tribal Communities
Two "Fast Facts" sheets developed by the Native Tradition, Environment And Community Health (TEACH) Project at the University of Washington Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health help researchers working with Indigenous communities move towards ethical and equitable research partnerships. The Responsible Research Partnerships (http://depts.washington.edu/ceeh/downloads/FF_Responsible.pdf) and Indigenous Cultural Autonomy (http://depts.washington.edu/ceeh/downloads/FF_Decolonizing.pdf) factsheet help researchers understand the Indigenous perspective and how to use this knowledge to inform the research process. Visit the website (http://depts.washington.edu/ceeh/community/native-teach.htm) for other resources created through the Native TEACH project.
Environmental Public Health Collection on PBS LearningMedia
Environmental health literacy is gaining recognition in large part to the quality educational resources available on the web. Recently, the Environmental Public Health Collection developed by WGBH Teacher's Domain (funded in part by NIEHS), was moved over to PBS LearningMedia. This media-based collection (http://www.pbslearningmedia.org/collection/enh/?topic_id=381) contains videos and supporting materials to help K-12 educators teach students about topics like mercury exposure, environmental justice, chemical hazards and more. Detailed lesson plans and professional development materials also help teachers incorporate environmental public health concepts in the classroom. Sign up (http://www.pbslearningmedia.org/) for free to access this diverse collection of resources.
Research Opportunity in the CDC Tribal Support Unit
A research opportunity is available at the Office for State, Tribal, Local, and Territorials Support (OSTLTS) in the Tribal Support Unit of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Tribal Support is the primary link between the CDC, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and tribal governments. Activities focus on ensuring that American Indian/Alaska Native communities receive public health services that keep them safe and healthy. See the posting (http://www.orau.org/science-education/internships-scholarships-fellowships/description.aspx?JobId=14398) for more details.
Webinar Series on Classes of Chemicals in Consumer Products
The Green Science Policy Institute is hosting a weekly webinar series (http://www.sixclasses.org/?utm_source=Six+Classes+Webinar+Series&utm_campaign=Invitation+Lecture+series&utm_medium=email) about six families of chemicals which contain many of the harmful substances found in everyday products. The upcoming, November 5, 2013, webinar features Arlene Blum, Ph.D., discussing flame retardants. Other topics include plasticizers and endocrine disruptors, solvents, and heavy metals. The webinars will be held on Tuesdays from 8:00 - 8:30 a.m. ET through December 10, 2013. Register (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1qvc7J_rNd0uS6sYkBzxrYqhr1dsQLhlwbiS8GWkX98g/viewform?utm_source=Six+Classes+Webinar+Series&utm_campaign=Invitation+Lecture+series&utm_medium=email) online.
Upcoming PEPH-related Meetings
- November 2-6, 2013: "American Public Health Association Annual Meeting (http://www.apha.org/meetings/AnnualMeeting/) " in Boston, Massachusetts. We urge those attending to check the "PEPH at APHA" listing to find posters and sessions being presented by our PEPH colleagues.
- February 13-15, 2014: "New Partners for Smart Growth Conference (http://newpartners.org/) " in Denver, Colorado. The program will include sessions and case studies focusing on social equity and environmental justice issues. Early-Bird registration closes Sunday, November 24th. Register online (http://newpartners.org/registration-scholarships/rates-policies).
- March 5-7, 2014: "Association for Community Health Improvement Conference (http://www.communityhlth.org/communityhlth/conf2014/2014Main.html) ," in Orlando, Florida. The conference theme: The critical role of community in moving from individual to population health. Registration opens November 1, 2013.
- March 20-21, 2014: Join the academic prevention and public health communities at "Teaching Prevention 2014: Convergence of Technology, Innovation & Collaboration (http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Call-for-Abstracts-Teaching-Prevention-2014.html?soid=1101389902851&aid=SlLVWkhL-Ic) " in Washington, D.C., to share and learn about the skills, infrastructure, and resources needed to practice and promote preventive health.
- April 30-May 3, 2014: Save the date for the next "Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH) Conference (https://ccph.memberclicks.net/conference-overview) ." The conference theme is "From Rhetoric to Reality: Achieving Authentic, Equitable & Transformative Partnerships." Registration opens December 2013. Visit the CCPH website (https://ccph.memberclicks.net/conference-overview) for more information.