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Your Environment. Your Health.

PEPH E-News August 2013

Volume 4, Issue 8: August 2013

PEPH E-News Header

Welcome to the August edition of the PEPH Newsletter!

As we bring the Environmental Health Disparities and Environmental Justice meeting to a successful end, we want to thank everyone for their time, commitment, and effort. We will feature highlights from the meeting in next month's newsletter.

Now that August is here, most of us try to escape the hot and humid summer days, but for some it can be hard to find ways to beat the heat. This issue of the PEPH Newsletter highlights a study about farmworkers who don't get a break from the heat, even after they leave the fields. We also feature a video that has inspired Detroit residents to raise awareness about environmental hazards in their community. Read on to learn how mere miles can mean dramatic differences in the life expectancies for people living in neighboring communities. We also feature a new health literacy report and a publicly available data set about how people find, use, and understand health information.

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 (!

University of Michigan COEC Video Sheds Light on the Environmental Hazards of Oxidative Stress

The University of Michigan Community Outreach and Education Center (COEC)  works closely with a Stakeholder Advisory Board (SAB) to educate Detroit and Southeast Michigan communities about local environmental health issues. "The Stakeholder Advisory Board recommended that we produce a video to reach a wider audience in the community," said Myra Tetteh, COEC Coordinator. The video, "Oxidative Stress and the Environment," explains how oxidative stress affects health and how people can protect themselves from its harmful effects. A supplemental video discussion guide encourages communities to improve environmental health through policy and advocacy. "Community members involved in the screening were excited to take part in raising community awareness to environmental hazards," said Tetteh. The COEC has also created an oxidative stress factsheet in English  and Spanish , as well as bilingual factsheets on a range of other environmental health issues. Research from the University of Michigan Environmental Health Science Core Center has served as a catalyst in raising awareness in the community.

Reaching Our STEM Potential PEPH Webinar

This PEPH webinar will share insights into the many resources and tools developed by NIEHS grantees and other groups to increase proficiency of students' performance in the STEM fields. The presentations will be interactive and will highlight successful approaches to reaching underserved populations and gaining access to teachers to promote STEM. The PEPH webinar "Reaching our STEM Potential - How can we improve our performance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math?" will be held August 9, 2013 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET. Register online.

(In addition, mark your calendars for a second PEPH webinar this month, "Addressing Historical Inequities: Environmental Justice for Native Americans." The webinar will be held August 21, 2013. Details and a registration link to follow soon.)

Autism Children's Environmental Health Webinar

This month's EPA/NIEHS Children's Centers webinar, "Autism, Genes and the Environment" features Isaac Pessah, Ph.D. , and Rebecca Schmidt, Ph.D. , from the University of California, Davis. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, August 14, 2013 from 1:00-2:30 p.m. ET.  .

PEPH Podcasts: Environmental Health Chat

This podcast series explores how environmental exposures affect our health. Each episode highlights ways researchers work in partnership with community groups to understand and address environmental health issues. Check out past podcast on the PEPH Environmental Health Chat Web page, or subscribe to the series on iTunes .

Examples of past podcasts:

Stayed tuned for more podcasts this summer!

Farmworkers Don't Get a Break From the Heat

New research shows that migrant farmworkers continue to experience excessive heat and humidity even after leaving the fields. According to the study, most heat index measures in common and sleeping rooms at farmworker camps in North Carolina exceed the danger threshold. Funded by the NIEHS, the study is part of an ongoing community-based participatory research program at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and is available online  in the American Journal of Public Health.

City Maps Show Dramatic Difference in Life Expectancy

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America has used maps  to show dramatic differences in the life expectancies of neighboring communities in five US cities. The New Orleans map  shows a staggering 25 year difference in life expectancies for babies born just a few miles apart. The maps emphasize the importance of environmental factors to human health. This fall, the Commission will release recommendations for building healthier communities.

New IOM Health Literacy Report

The idea that health literate people are healthier people is a common theme throughout a  summarizing the September 2012 Institute of Medicine (IOM) Roundtable on Health Literacy. The report offers diverse perspectives on policy, programs, innovations, and recommendations to advance health literacy.

HINTS Data Available for Research Use

New data from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) are now available for public use. HINTS is a national survey to measure how people find, use, and understand health information. NIEHS worked with NCI to develop survey questions to measure people's concern over environmental exposures and health impacts. For information on how to use HINTS data in your own research, visit the frequently asked questions webpage and attend the HINTS Users Conference on October 2-3, 2013 in Bethesda, Maryland.

Upcoming PEPH-Related Meetings

August 22-23, 2013: "Science of Community Engaged Research: Future Directions" in Bethesda, Maryland. Register  until August 5, 2013.

September 24-25, 2013: "National Health Impact Assessment Meeting " in Washington, D.C. Register Online.

September 24-27, 2013: "International Conference of the Pacific Basin Consortium for Environment and Health " in Honolulu, Hawaii. Register online.

October 18-19, 2013: "North Carolina Environmental Justice Network Annual Summit " in Edgecombe County, North Carolina. Submit abstracts for research presentations to by September 5, 2013.

October 29-30, 2013: "EPA/NIEHS Children's Centers Annual Progress Review Conference " in Washington, D.C. Come celebrate the work of the EPA/NIEHS Children's Centers program and discuss recent developments in children's environmental health. Register online.

November 2-6, 2013: "American Public Health Association (APHA) Annual Meeting " in Boston, Massachusetts. As always, there are many sessions focused on community engagement and environmental health. Learn more about CBPR or community perceptions about hydraulic fracturing . If you are attending APHA and are presenting, please let us know. Register online.

April 30-May 3, 2014: Save the date for the next "Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH) Conference , The conference theme is "From Rhetoric to Reality: Achieving Authentic, Equitable & Transformative Partnerships." Poster or session proposals are due by September 30, 2013, and registration opens December 2013. Visit the CCPH website for more information.

Funding Opportunities

Visit the PEPH Funding Opportunity Announcements page for more PEPH-related funding opportunities.

Toyota U.S.A. Foundation - K-12 Education Grants . Committed to enhancing K-12 math, science, and environmental science education. There is no application deadline. Only 501(c)(3) organizations can apply.

Native American Research Centers for Health (S06). . Supporting research partnerships with American Indian / Alaska Native communities to reduce health disparities. Deadline: August 6, 2013.

Healthy Schools: Environmental Factors, Children's Health and Performance, and Sustainable Building Practices . To understand the relationship between environmental factors and the health, safety, and performance of students and teachers. Deadline: October 8, 2013.

Susceptibility and Variability in Human Response to Chemical Exposure . Deadline: September 10, 2013.


Do you have an announcement to share with the PEPH community? Send us your news for the next issue of the PEPH Newsletter (

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