News and Features Archive
This page provides links to past year’s EHS spotlight and
Quick links to EHS spotlight and news articles by year:
2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001.
2012 Archived News Items
EHS Feature News page on Floods: Resources for EH Practitioners – Links to EHS and CDC resources for environmental health practitioners on flood response.
Summer Internship with Environmental Health Services! – Applications are now being accepted for a 10-week summer environmental internship for students majoring in Environmental Health. Interns gain environmental health experience and an understanding of environmental health work at the local, state, tribal, and federal levels. Application deadline: February 13, 2013.
Emergency Water Supply Planning Guide for Hospitals and Health Care Facilities Available Online [PDF - 490 KB] – The guide helps health care facilities develop Emergency Water Supply Plans as part of their overall emergency operations plans. This article is published in the December 2012 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.
EHS Feature News page on Natural Disasters: Resources for EH Practitioners – Resources for environmental health practitioners on disaster preparedness and response.
Enumerating the Environmental Public Health Workforce—Challenges and Opportunities. [PDF - 176 KB] – CAPT Mehran Massoudi, Rob Blake, and Larry Marcum discuss efforts to determine the number and composition of the U.S. workforce at the federal, state, and local levels. This article is published in the November 2012 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.The Food-Water Nexus: Irrigation Water Quality, Risks to Food Safety, and the Need for a Systems-Based Preventive Approach [PDF - 253 KB] – CAPT Rick Gelting and Mansoor Baloch show how a systems-based environmental assessment helped identify contributing factors in two nationwide outbreaks linked to fresh produce. This article is published in the October 2012 issue [PDF - 96 KB] of the Journal of Environmental Health.
Plain Language Summaries: A New EHS-Net Tool to Share Our Published Findings [PDF - 249 KB] – Laura Green Brown and Pamela S. Wigington discuss new summaries that contain brief descriptions of each study’s purpose, method, findings, conclusions, and recommendations. Summaries of 12 EHS-Net studies are now available in four categories:
- Restaurant-related foodborne illness outbreaks.
- General public's belief about gastrointestinal illness.
- Restaurant food handling and food safety practices.
- Retail food safety programs.
Establishing the Practice of Health Impact Assessment in the United States [PDF - 613 KB] – Guest columnist CDR Arthur M. Wendel describes health impact assessments (HIAs) and how they are instrumental in building healthy and safe community environments. He also describes tools and resources created by CDC’s Healthy Community Design Initiative to help EH practitioners engage in HIAs. This article is published in the July/August 2012 issue [PDF - 107 KB] of the Journal of Environmental Health.
Prevention of Tick-Borne Diseases [PDF - 211 KB] – Joseph Piesman and C. Ben Beard describe U.S. efforts to prevent tick-borne diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and Colorado tick fever. They also announce the TickNET multistate trial to determine whether barrier acaricide sprays on residential properties are effective in decreasing the incidence of Lyme disease. This article is published in the June 2012 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.
EHS Feature News page on Recreational Water Illness and Injury (RWII) Prevention Week — May 21–27, 2012 – Environmental health materials related to Healthy Swimming.
Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) and International Swimming Pool and Spa Code (ISPSC) [PDF - 385 KB] – Rob Blake and Jay Peters discuss how MAHC and ISPSC can complement each other. They discuss how clearly identifying the respective roles of building and health officials in the two codes is key and how public health will benefit from closer collaboration with building officials.
Public Health Performance Management: Opportunities for Environmental Public Health [PDF - 357 KB] – Environmental public health programs can help public health departments meet performance and quality improvement goals. LCDR Justin Gerding and Julianne Price discuss how a local environmental health department used the Environmental Public Health Performance Standards to initiate quality improvement efforts.
Evaluating Local and State Food and Water Safety Programs [PDF - 757 KB] – Kristin Delea discusses a planned evaluation of local and state food and water safety programs to provide data that show the impact of these programs on public health. This article is published in the March 2012 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.
Disinfection and Water Quality Module for Public Review and Comment – Draft Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) module is open for public comment through April 27, 2012. This module takes the first steps in addressing recurring and emerging aquatic health issues related to disinfection and water quality.
Summer Program in Environmental Health (SUPEH) [PDF - 208 KB] – Read about the experience of four 2011 SUPEH interns, from hands-on activities in the field to EH management in the office. This article is published in the January/February 2012 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.
New Drinking Water Advisory Communication Toolbox [PDF - 581 KB] – Drinking water advisories are issued when a local water system is compromised and there is a threat of possible adverse health effects to the public. CAPT Mark Miller and CAPT John Watson describe a new Drinking Water Advisory Communication Toolbox that focuses on water systems and addresses multiple situations that generate drinking water advisories. This article is published in the December 2011 issue of the Journal of Environmental Health.
- Webinar for States on the Drinking Water Advisory Toolbox – Access the February 12, 2012, Webinar hosted by the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators to discuss the basic tools, how they were developed, and how they can be used.
2011 Archived News Items
Environmental Health Training in Emergency Response
EHTER is the newest addition to Sharing Our Stories: NCEH’s Impact on Public Health! Read about how EHTER prepares environmental health workers for emergency response. Find out how EHTER graduates apply what they learned in the course to tornado responses in Birmingham and Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and Joplin, Missouri. Learn how EH responders in Alaska, Tunisia, and the Caribbean also received the training.
Model Aquatic Health Code Update
Doug Sackett, Director of the Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC), presented the latest updates on the MAHC modules at the World Aquatic Health Conference in Seattle on October 14, 2011. The MAHC Presentations and Webinars page provides a free link to view this presentation. Three draft MAHC modules are open for public comment:
- Risk Management and Safety Module (through November 18, 2011).
- Facility Maintenance and Operations (through December 29, 2011).
- Hygiene (through December 29, 2011).
Guidance on Microbial Contamination in Previously Flooded Outdoor Areas – This guidance was developed for public health authorities, emergency response managers, and government decision makers. It defines how to assess the public health risks for using outdoor areas after a flood event where potential exposure to microbial contamination exists.
New Tools: Visit EH Capa-City – Visit our new model of a healthy town, EH Capa-City, a visual format of an environmentally healthy community where you can access new tools from EHS capacity-building grantees on a range of EH topics. Programs can use or adapt these tools for their jurisdictions.
When Every Drop Counts: Protecting Public Health During Drought Conditions—A Guide for Public Health Professionals – CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health developed this publication to assist public health officials, practitioners, and other stakeholders in their efforts to understand and prepare for drought in their communities. The document includes information about how drought affects public health, recommends steps to help mitigate the health effects of drought, identifies future needs for research and other drought-related activities, and provides a list of helpful resources and tools.
Free Environmental Public Health Online Courses (EPHOC) – EPHOC courses are taught by a group of environmental public health subject-matter experts from across the country. Fourteen courses are now available for REHS/RS credit! Courses available include Statutes and Regulations, Potable Water, Wastewater, Solid and Hazardous Waste, Hazardous Materials, Housing Sanitation and Safety, and Swimming Pools and Recreational Facilities.
Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute (EPHLI) Projects Available – Leadership projects from 6 years of EPHLI graduates are now online and searchable. Each year, approximately 30 practicing environmental public health professionals are admitted to CDC’s EPHLI program. As part of their participation in EPHLI, graduates define an organizational issue and/or a community environmental public health issue and develop a plan to address it. These plans become the graduates’ final leadership projects.
National Environmental Assessment Info System (NVEAIS) – Foodborne illness outbreak environmental assessments provide information needed by food regulatory programs to improve hazard surveillance and inform foodborne disease prevention policies. NVEAIS was developed to provide food-safety program managers with an information resource that could fill this gap. Food-safety programs can now access NVEAIS and pilot its use for foodborne illness outbreak environmental assessment reporting.
2010 Archived News Items
When Every Drop Counts: Protecting Public Health During Drought Conditions—A Guide for Public Health Professionals – Publication to assist public health officials, practitioners, and other stakeholders in their efforts to understand and prepare for drought in their communities.
Free Environmental Public Health Online Courses (EPHOC) – Fourteen courses now available for continuing education credit! The full package of 15 courses equals more than 45 hours of training.
Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute (EPHLI) Projects Available – Leadership projects from 5 years of EPHLI graduates are now online and searchable.
National Environmental Assessment Info System (NVEAIS) – Food-safety programs can now access NVEAIS and pilot its use for foodborne illness outbreak environmental assessment reporting.
Products for Environmental Health (EH) Programs – Toolkits and other resources developed by CDC EH grantees to help programs deliver EH services, improve EH capacity to respond to current and emerging health threats, and expand the science-base in environmental public health to improve public health practice.
Training Environmental Public Health Leaders [PDF - 95 KB] – Local EH practitioners are essential in protecting the public health from environmental threats. Read more about how Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute fellows applied systems thinking to solve environmental public health problems in their jurisdictions.
Violations Identified from Routine Swimming Pool Inspections --- Selected States and Counties, United States, 2008. MMWR – analysis of 2008 data from routine pool inspections in multiple U.S. jurisdictions
2009 Archived News Items
Certified Kitchen Managers: Do They Improve Restaurant Inspection Outcomes? [PDF - 65 KB] – Journal of Food Protection, 2009. Article examines relationships between the results of routine restaurant inspections and the presence of a certified kitchen manager.
Environmental Health History Remembered [PDF - 140 KB] – Read about a recent visit by three CDC environmental health pioneers: RADM Jerrold Michael, CAPT Richard Clapp, and CAPT Frank Bryan.
Environmental Health Training in Emergency Response (EHTER) – CDC partnership provides free training to State and local EH practitioners.
Global Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (GWASH) – Find out about EHS’ work evaluating sustainability of interventions, improving access to safe drinking water, and researching public health impacts of sanitation programs.
Respiratory and Ocular Symptoms Among Employees of a Hotel Indoor Waterpark Resort --- Ohio, 2007. MMWR – Article describes results of an investigation which revealed that trichloramine concentrations in the waterpark ranged from below the limit of detection to 1.06 mg/m3.
SUPEH: Summer Internship with EHS! – A new 10-week summer environmental internship for juniors and seniors majoring in Environmental Health.
2008 Archived News Items
CAPT Charles Otto was named to the Aquatics International 2008 Power 25 list [PDF - 53 KB] for his work on RWI Prevention Week and on CDC's Model Aquatic Health Code.
Environmental Health Specialists’ Self-Reported Foodborne Illness Outbreak Investigation Practices [PDF - 299 KB] – Journal of Environmental Health, 2008. Article includes qualitative data about environmental health specialists'; foodborne illness outbreak investigation practices and difficulties associated with those practices.
Internship Experiences – Interns who have worked in the Environmental Health Services Branch share information about their internships.
Job Profile: Environmental Health Specialists [PDF - 42 KB] – EHSB's CAPT Mark Miller was profiled in an article about the important role of environmental health specialists in preventing outbreaks and responding to emergencies.
Research of Public Health Pioneer Leads to Reduced Foodborne Outbreaks [PDF - 86 KB] – NCEH celebrates Dr. Frank Bryan for his commitment to public health that has spanned five decades and resulted in fewer foodborne outbreaks and diseases.
2007 Archived News Items
USNS Comfort [PDF - 259 KB] – describes the US Naval hospital ship's deployment in 2007 to 12 countries of Latin America and the Caribbean; CDC staff on board included the Officer-in-Charge, CAPT Craig Shepherd from EHS.
Military to Civilian Environmental Health Practice [PDF - 3 MB] – provides information to environmental health professionals who are retiring or leaving active duty service so they consider careers with state and local environmental public health programs.
A Workforce “Crisis” in Environmental Health [PDF – 96 KB] – describes the workforce crisis plaguing environmental health and how EHS works on programs and publications to improve both the number and the quality of environmental health practitioners at the tribal, state, and local level.
Final Report for the Process Evaluation of PACE EH – addresses questions related to awareness and adoption of the Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health (PACE EH), PACE EH implementation, intermediate results, and recommendations for future community environmental health assessment activities. The evaluation was conducted by Battelle’s Center for Public Health Research and Evaluation. To receive a copy of this evaluation please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Value and Benefits of Environmental Health Services [DOC - 77 KB] – collaboration among NCEH capacity-building grantee projects to produce a set of talking points to facilitate development of strategic partnerships that recognize the critical role public policymakers have in supporting the delivery of environmental health services. These talking points can be used by state and local environmental health practitioners to develop information and education strategies for public policymakers.
Factors Related to Food Worker Hand Hygiene Practices [PDF - 77 KB] – Journal of Food Protection, 2007. Article includes quantitative data on establishment characteristics associated with food worker hand washing and glove use practices.
Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute (EPHLI) Presentations and Graduation – On February 28, 2007, the second cohort of fellows graduated from EPHLI. The 36 fellows in the class of 2006–2007 came to Atlanta for their final session and to present their final projects. The 42 members of the class of 2007–2008 attended the presentations and graduation and began their year of seminars and workshops, special projects, and individual study. For more information about EPHLI, contact Brian Hubbard (770-488-7098 or email@example.com).
NEHA Educational Series Now Available – provides environmental health professionals with convenient, affordable, and relevant continuing education. For more information on NEHA-CERT courses, go to www.nehacert.org.
Outbreaks of Short-Incubation Ocular and Respiratory Illness Following Exposure to Indoor Swimming Pools – CDC investigation of two Illinois indoor hotel swimming pool chloramine-associated outbreaks (published in Environmental Health Perspectives).
2006 Archived News Items
NALBOH Onsite Wastewater and Land Use Planning Guides [PDF - 933 KB] – guide and companion DVD may be ordered from NALBOH. NALBOH collaborated with the Environmental Health Services Branch and the National Center for Environmental Health on this project.
CDC Support for EMAC – The Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) is a congressionally ratified interstate mutual aid agreement that provides a mechanism for sharing personnel, resources, equipment, and assets during emergencies and disasters. EMAC was used to provide public health and environmental health assistance during the 2005 hurricane season with much success.
CDC and HUD to Release an Updated Housing Inspection Manual [PDF - 191 KB] – The Healthy Housing Reference Manual – discusses revision of CDC’s 30-year-old Basic Housing Inspection manual and its release as the Healthy Housing Reference Manual. This is one in a series of monthly Environmental Health Services Branch columns in the Journal of Environmental Health.
Environmental Health in Disaster Response – Level 1 Pilot [PDF - 333 KB] – seeking comments on the pilot course outline.
Pictorial Keys to Arthropods, Reptiles, Birds, and Mammals of Public Health Significance – pictorial keys used to teach animal identification to personnel (sanitarians, engineers, physicians, veterinarians, etc.) without special training in taxonomy.
CAPT Craig Shepherd: John G. Todd Award Winner [PDF - 511 KB] – The Todd Award is the USPHS Environmental Health Officer's highest award. As this year’s recipient, CAPT Shepherd of the Environmental Health Services Branch was recognized for having served with excellence, honor, and distinction throughout his career.
Environmental Health Career Opportunities for Personnel Leaving Military Service [PDF - 159 KB] – CAPT Mike Herring of the Environmental Health Services Branch made a presentation on a new CDC workforce initiative at the Navy Environmental Health Conference. The Career Resource Guide for Uniformed Services Environmental Health Practitioners [PDF - 3.4 MB] was developed to provide information and encouragement to environmental health professionals who are retiring or leaving active duty service to consider careers with state and local environmental public health programs.
Environmental Public Health Services Featured in IJHEH – A recent edition of the International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health includes three articles written by EHSB authors. Abstracts are available on the EHSB Publications Page.
Emergency and Terrorism Preparedness Web Site for Practitioners – The Environmental Health Services Branch is pleased to announce its new Emergency and Terrorism Preparedness Web site. This clearinghouse of information contains resources related to emergency and terrorism preparedness for environmental health practitioners. Subject areas on the site include general preparedness, food security, water security, hazardous materials, building environment, radiation, vector control, and biologic and infectious waste.
Environmental Health Specialists Network Information System [PDF - 77 KB] – The Environmental Health Specialists Network Information System (EHSNIS) is an Internet application available for free use by government agencies and nonprofit organizations to support their data collection needs relating to environmental health.
2005 Archived News Items
Mosquitoes and You: West Nile Virus Training for Elementary School Students (Volusia County Health Department, Florida) – multimedia training program with age-appropriate games, videos, and workbooks [K-2 [PDF - 1.3 MB]]; [3-5 [PDF - 1.7 MB]] and includes a teacher's manual [PDF - 907 MB]. This program was developed in collaboration with the Volusia County [Florida] Health Department.
South Bass Island Assessment [PDF - 1 MB] – environmental health assessment in 2004 identified potential sources of water contamination on Lake Erie's South Bass Island.
Environmental Health Services Branch Collaborates on Lead Exposure Reduction Plan in La Oroya, Peru – study of what may be contributing to reported health complaints and elevated blood lead levels and how to reduce exposure.
New Capacity Building Partnerships – EHSB has initiated new capacity building partnerships with five institutions to form regional environmental public health academic centers and nine environmental public health programs.
Essential Services of Environmental Health [PDF - 823 KB] – This training program is designed to help environmental health programs to fully integrate the essential services concepts into their own operations through a flexible workshop format. NEHA will be awarding continuing education credit for successful completion of the course.
First National Initiative to Promote Healthy Swimming [PDF - 28 KB] – Responding to increasing outbreaks of illness associated with swimming venues, leaders from local, state, and federal public health institutions, the aquatics industry, and nongovernmental groups recently convened in Atlanta to begin planning the first national, broad-based initiative to reduce and prevent recreational water illnesses. The workshop was in response to the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists' position paper [PDF - 85 KB] asking CDC to develop a national strategic plan to address the prevention and control of recreational water illnesses.
Environmental Public Health Services in Spotlight [PDF - 109 KB] – The March 2005 edition of the The Nation's Health announced a new Web site, www.ephs-apha.org, which highlights the work of environmental public health workers and spotlights critical issues faced by those workers and their communities. The August 2004 [PDF - 401 KB] edition featured an article about the revitalization of environmental public health services.
2004 Archived News Items
A Systems-based Food Safety Evaluation: An Experimental Approach [PDF - 531 KB] (Capt. Chuck Higgins and Capt. Barry Hartfield, USPHS, NPS Public Health Program) – Was published in the November edition of the NEHA Journal of Environmental Health. The development of the environmental health system approach used in this study came from work done by Capt. Higgins in collaboration with other branch members during his assignment at CDC’s Environmental Health Services Branch.
Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute – In October, the Environmental Health Services Branch held an orientation session for CDC’s new Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute in Louisville, Kentucky. In January 2005, additional candidates will be considered for admittance into the program, with the first session scheduled for spring 2005. Additional information is available from Capt. John Sarisky at JSarisky@cdc.gov.
MMWR Publication: An Outbreak of Norovirus Gastroenteritis at a Swimming Club -- Vermont, 2004 – This report summarizes the results of a successful environmental health systems approach investigation conducted by the Vermont Department of Health and CDC. The findings underscore the importance of correct pool maintenance for rapid identification of water-quality problems to prevent outbreaks of swimming pool-associated illness.
Swimming Pool Inspectors Interactive Training CD-ROM – This CD-ROM is an excellent and innovative tool for training new environmental health personnel and a good review for experienced staff. The 37 lessons include more than 100 videos, computer animations, and detailed 3-D graphics; 470 photos; interactive problem-solving exercises and quizzes; and live links to the CDC Healthy Swimming Web site.
NALBOH Environmental Health Primer – 200+ page document prepared by the National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH) on environmental health issues such as air quality, food safety, drinking water, wastewater, solid waste, hazardous waste, vector control, injury prevention, risk assessment, and more.
Community-Based Environmental Health Assessment (CEHA) Program – The Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health (PACE EH) is an innovative tool that allows communities and local governments to identify environmental health issues, rank local environmental health concerns, and prioritize environmental health program activities.
After a Hurricane or Flood: Cleanup of Flood Water – EHSB staff members have been active in response to the recent series of hurricanes. They have responded to assist Florida state and local environmental health agencies and developed guidance documents.
Zoonotic Disease Surveillance [PDF - 352 KB] – CDR Hugh Mainzer coauthored an article, Surveillance Methodologies for Zoonotic Diseases at Community Levels, recently published by the United Nation's Food and Agricultural Organization in the Final Report: Expert Consultation on Community Based Veterinary Public Health Systems.
EHS-Net Egg Study Published in Journal of Food Protection – Prevalence of High-Risk Egg-Preparation Practices in Restaurants That Prepare Breakfast Egg Entrées: An EHS-Net Study published in the July issue of the Journal of Food Protection. The study in the seven EHS-Net states included an interview and brief site evaluation of 153 restaurants that prepare eggs during all hours of operation.
American Public Health Association Features Revitalization [PDF - 400 KB] – The August 2004 edition of The Nation's Health features an article on the revitalization of environmental public health services.
The National Environmental Health Diversity Recruitment Task Force – Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) is leading an effort to develop “National Models of Excellence” in diversity for this rapidly expanding career field.
MMWR Surveillance Data From Public Spa Inspections United States, May–September 2002 – Extensive spa use combined with inadequate maintenance contribute to recreational water illnesses (RWIs) caused by pathogens. The findings underscore the utility of these data for public health decision-making and the need for increased training and vigilance by operators to ensure high-quality spa water for use by the public.
Stormwater Management and Vector Breeding Habitats [PDF - 68 KB] – A new systems-based approach can help to ensure that mosquito-management programs integrated into storm water management programs.
2003 Archived News Items
MMWR Pool Inspection Data – Since the 1980s, the number of reported recreational water illness outbreaks has increased steadily. Local environmental health programs inspect public and semipublic pools periodically to determine compliance with local and state health regulations.
CDR Gelting Recognized – CDR Richard J. Gelting, Ph.D., of the Environmental Health Services Branch of NCEH recently received the USPHS Engineering Literary Award.
Environmental Health Competency Project – A national panel defined core competencies for local level environmental health practitioners.
Preparing For The Environmental Public Health Challenges Of The 21st Century – Preparing the environmental public health workforce, promoting an all-hazards approach to preparedness and response to manmade and natural public health challenges and developing emerging environmental public health leaders are the themes of this CDC conference, December 3-5, 2003.
2002 Archived News Items
Special Grand Rounds: Revitalizing the Environmental Health Services System – The Special Grand Round highlighted the issues, challenges and efforts to revitalize the environmental health services in the United Kingdom and the United States.
2001 Archived News Items
A Waterborne Outbreak of Norwalk-Like Virus among Snowmobilers - Wyoming, 2001 – A cohort study found a significant association between water consumption and illness, and testing identified Norwalk-like virus (NLV) in 8 of the 13 stool samples and 1 well.