Volume 3 Number 11 March 2006
NIOSH eNews Web page
To subscribe, click here
Printer Friendly Version
NIOSH, State of West Virginia and MSHA to Host International Mining
Safety and Health Meeting
Dr. Howard Will Play Role in HHS' World Trade Center Efforts
Named Director of Pittsburgh Research Laboratory
Published Findings Reveal Increase Risk for Brain Cancer Death Following
and Partners Develop Safe Patient Handling Presentation for Schools
Inhalational Anthrax Investigation Draws on NIOSH Expertise
Evaluating and Seeking Stakeholder Input on the NIOSH Fire Fighter
Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program
to Exhibit at the World of Asphalt Conference
Announces RFA on Prevention of Airborne Infections in Occupational
Division of Respiratory
Disease Studies (DRDS)
Division of Safety
Division of Surveillance,
Hazard Evaluations, and Field Studies (DSHEFS)
Education and Information
Health Effects Laboratory
National Personal Protective
Technology Laboratory (NPPTL)
Office of Compensation
Analysis and Support (OCAS)
We in NIOSH are excited that preparations are underway to launch the second decade of the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA). The official launch will occur next month at the 2006 National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Symposium. The three-day symposium will be held April 18-20, 2006 at the L’Enfant Plaza Hotel in Washington, D.C.
During the first decade of NORA, strategic research partnerships were developed. The second decade of NORA will build upon those partnerships while preparing for new challenges in designing research to address the 21st Century workplace. NIOSH, through feedback from numerous organizations and individuals, has shaped the second decade of NORA around eight sector research councils. In addition, a cross-sector research council will be formed to identify research partnerships across sectors. The councils will be led by partnerships with the worker, business, and academic communities.
This preliminary planning has involved close interactions with our stakeholders over the past year, including 12 town hall meetings across the U.S. that began in December 2005. To review the NORA sectors, visit the NORA Web page, http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/nora/sector.html.
In addition to launching the next decade of occupational safety and health research for the nation, the symposium will feature:
This is a historic event, and if you have not yet registered, we encourage
you to do so now at http://secure.nsc.org/forms/niosh_nora/register.cfm.
In the meantime, you can stay up to date with the latest information
on NORA through the NORA Web site, http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/nora. We
look forward to seeing you in April.
along with the State of West Virginia and the Mine Safety and Health
Administration (MSHA) will cosponsor an international Mining Health and
Safety Symposium April 20-22 at Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling,
WV. The Symposium will focus mine equipment approval and ways to accelerate
adoption of state-of-the-art technologies, both from traditional sources
and by adapting technologies developed for other applications. More information
is available at http://www.nttc.edu/minesafety/default.asp.
Director John Howard will play a lead role in the Department of Health
and Human Services' response to ongoing concerns about health effects
related to exposures from the World Trade Center (WTC) terrorist attack.
In a February 27 letter answering requests from the New York Congressional
delegation, Health and Human Services Secretary Michael Leavitt wrote
that the coordination effort will provide "appropriate, compassionate,
and timely support to those who were affected by the WTC exposures
following the 9/11 attack." NIOSH has been active in this area
since early 2002, administering a series of grants for screening, monitoring
and treatment of World Trade Center responders.
was named permanent director of NIOSH's Pittsburgh Research Laboratory
on February 27. Dr. Gürtunca had served as acting director of the
laboratory during the previous 18 months. Dr. Gürtunca has conducted
research in a range of mining safety and health topics and has published
extensively. Dr. Gürtunca received his undergraduate and Master's
degrees in Mining Engineering from Middle East Technical University in
Turkey, and his Doctorate in Mining Engineering from the School of Mining
Engineering of University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia in 1984.
Prior to joining NIOSH, he was director of the CSIR Mining Technology
Division (Miningtek) in South Africa.
scientists published their latest findings from research to help resolve
the question of whether Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) pose an occupational
risk for cancer. Despite the production of PCBs having been banned
almost 30 years ago, workers who repair, maintain, or dispose of equipment
containing PCBs may still be exposed occupationally. Studies to date
have not resolved the question as to whether PCBs can cause work-related
cancer. Following up on a 1992 study with new data, the new report
confirmed earlier findings of higher-than-expected mortality from brain
cancer and melanoma among workers at an Indiana capacitor manufacturing
plant. The report notes limitations of the study, including lack of
information about non-occupational risk factors, lifestyle choices
and previous or subsequent employment. The NIOSH scientists are pursuing
further research that “may provide some additional insight,” according
to their report. The report, published in the January 2006 issue of
the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, is available
is seeking comments from our stakeholders on a draft training presentation, “Safe
Patient Handling and Movement Principles.” NIOSH, in partnership
with the American Nurses Association and the Veterans Health Administration’s
Patient Safety Center, have developed the presentation as a component
of new training curriculum for safe patient handling at schools of
nursing, but it should be of interest for any situation of patient
handling. A draft version of the presentation can be viewed online
or downloaded via a Zip file at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/review/public/safe-patient.
The presentation will remain available for review until May 30, 2006.
After that date, NIOSH will consider all the comments submitted and
make appropriate revisions to the presentation before publishing a
final version. This presentation will also undergo scientific peer
review. The details of the review will be reference on the NIOSH Web
site in the near future.
scientists helped to design and conduct environmental sampling for
naturally occurring anthrax spores on February 22 at the home and the
work facility of a New York resident who was diagnosed and hospitalized
with inhalational anthrax while on travel to Pennsylvania. The NIOSH
assistance was part of a response from the U.S. Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC), along with other federal, state, and
local agencies, at the request of the New York City Department of Health
(NYDOH). The NYDOH said that the infection appeared to be related to
the patient's work in confined spaces with unprocessed animal hides
used in making handcrafted drums. One component of the sampling strategy
was the use of an innovative vacuum-collection method that was successfully
adapted and used by NIOSH as part of the investigation into the 2001
anthrax attacks. More information on the CDC response to the February
case involving naturally occurring spores is available at http://www.bt.cdc.gov/agent/anthrax/han022206.asp.
More information on the innovative method developed by NIOSH, and its
use in sampling during the 2001 investigation, is available at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5050a1.htm.
is undertaking two complementary efforts to seek data and input to
guide future directions of the NIOSH Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation
and Prevention Program. Last month, NIOSH initiated a national survey
of U.S. fire departments focusing on the use of NIOSH recommendations
and information products. NIOSH is seeking input from fire chiefs and
frontline fire fighters to see how and where NIOSH reports are being
used and to identify ways to increase the usefulness and impact of
the fire fighter program in reducing fire fighter fatalities. A March
22 public meeting in Washington, D.C., will address the broad array
of stakeholder needs and ideas. More information on the program, survey,
and meeting can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/fire.
the request of the National Asphalt Pavement Association, NIOSH has been
invited to exhibit at the World of Asphalt conference and exhibition
in Orlando, FL March 14-16 (http://www.worldofasphalt.com).
The NIOSH booth (visit us at booth number 1081) will feature NIOSH research
projects on work zone safety and noise-induced hearing loss. Visitors
to the booth will be provided demonstrations of blind areas around construction
equipment, internal traffic control plans, and data collection methods
for tracking worker risk to being struck by construction equipment operating
inside work zones. Visitors will also learn about hearing loss prevention
while having their hearing checked in the NIOSH Hearing Loss Simulator
Unit. Visitors will also experience the sensation of hearing loss as
they check out the NIOSH hearing loss simulator. NIOSH will provide similar
educational services at the April 2006 International Union of Operating
Engineers Health and Safety Conference in Newport Beach California.
NIOSH Office of Extramural Programs announces a Request for Applications
(RFA) on Prevention of Airborne Infections in Occupational Setting.
The application receipt date is April 18, 2006. The purpose of the
announcement is to invite applications to conduct basic, applied or
population research that will improve prevention of airborne infectious
diseases in occupational settings. Studies with a high likelihood of
affecting real-world prevention practices are especially desirable.
The announcement can be found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-OH-06-002.html.
Contact Adele Childress at AChildress@cdc.gov for additional information.
Global Occupational Health Network: Promoting Students’ and
Young Workers’ Health and Safety by NIOSH/CDC and other US Organizations
Posts Nanotechnology Web Library for Use, Comment
NIOSH offers a new, Web-based Nanoparticle Information Library (NIL), http://www2a.cdc.gov/niosh-nil, for public use and comment. The new, interactive database responds to the needs of scientists, business leaders, and others for information on different types of nanoparticles in current use, their physical and chemical characteristics, and their occupational health and safety implications. By providing the database, NIOSH hopes to further the ability of researchers and decision-makers to address the question of whether work-related exposures to nanomaterials may have unintended health consequences. The Library is part of NIOSH’s strategic program for conducting advanced research on the occupational health and safety implications of nanotechnology, providing interim guidance on occupational health practices, and stimulating new partnerships. Further information on this strategic program is available at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/nanotech.
December 2006 Nanotechnology Conference
and Occupational Health Nurses Association Partner to Advance Occupational
Safety and Health Research and Outreach
On January 27, NIOSH and the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to further research and outreach efforts for the prevention of occupational injuries and illnesses. The agreement, signed by NIOSH Director John Howard, M.D. and AAOHN President Susan Randolph, is in effect until October 2008 and can be extended. More information can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/updates/upd-02-21-06.html.
NIOSH Collaborates for Control and Prevention of CO poisonings on Recreational
NIOSH Technology Provides Basis for Approved Mine System
For details on these meetings, visit the NORA Town Hall Web site at
of Applied Research and Technology (DART)
Division of Respiratory Disease Studies (DRDS)
Division of Safety
Division of Surveillance, Hazard Evaluations, and Field Studies (DSHEFS)
Education and Information Division (EID)
Health Effects Laboratory Division (HELD)
National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL)
Office of Compensation Analysis and Support (OCAS)
Pittsburgh Research Laboratory (PRL)
OSHA, NHTSA and NETS Issue Guidelines for Reducing Motor Vehicle Crashes
Flu: Protecting Workers from Exposure Topic Page
Exposure to Antineoplastic Agents Topic Page
for Abstracts: 13th International Respiratory Protection of Healthcare
Workers and Emergency Responders
2006 NORA Symposium: Research Makes a Difference
2006 and VENT 2006
1st American Conference on Human Vibration
banding: A risk assessment and management tool to help
businesses by providing an understandable, practical approach for controlling
hazardous chemical exposures at work. In control banding, a single
control technology (such as general ventilation or containment) is
applied to one range or band of exposures to a chemical (such as 1-10
that falls within a given hazard group (such as skin and eye irritants
or severely irritating and corrosive materials).