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New directions in occupational health training.

NIOSH 2005 Sep; :1-15
The two year Occupational Medicine (OM) training program at the Institute of Occupational and Environmental and Health of West Virginia University prepares physicians for board certification by the America Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM) in OM. The program was fully reaccredited without citations by the ACGME in May 2002. It is unique in being the only rural-based OM training site in the country and specifically seeks to address the shortage of OM physicians in the Appalachian region. The first year of the program consists of coursework towards completion of a Master of Public Health degree with a Special Emphasis in Occupational and Environmental Health. The curriculum has emphasized industrial hygiene, toxicology and interdisciplinary interaction. The practicum year includes a wide variety of industrial, administrative, and clinical rotations. All trainees in the program rotate either through the Division of Respiratory Disease Studies or the Division of Safety Research at NIOSH for 6 months and participate in national-level field investigations of outbreaks of occupational lung disease or workplace fatalities. An innovative program of interdisciplinary training, the Small Business Outreach, offered a unique educational experience for residents, industrial hygiene and safety students to participate in field investigations on a smaller scale in settings with a disproportionate level of occupational morbidity, as well as boost public health within the state. Additional rotations have been developed both inside and outside of the state to ensure a broad exposure and accommodate trainee career goals. Throughout both years of the program trainees also participate in the OM clinic operated through the institute. In 2006, a dedicated Post-Graduate Year 1 will become available, making this the only OM program in the country to offer all three years of training. The training activities of the Institute have extended well beyond the residency program and include all the three medical schools in the state, practicing physicians nationally and internationally through the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine's (ACOEM) Basic Curriculum in Occupational Medicine as well as a new summer course in Occupational Health, one of only two courses accredited by the ABPM for recertification requirements in OM. Eleven trainees graduated from the program under the five year project period, seven of whom hold board certification in another area. Seven are in full time OM practice in a rural area, and seven are in full time OM practice in the Appalachian region. Trainees have been recipients of national awards for research from ACOEM consecutively from 2000 to 2005.
Teaching; Training; Education; Occupational-health-programs; Occupational-medicine; Health-science-personnel; Medical-personnel; Medical-sciences; Environmental-hazards; Occupational-diseases; Work-environment; Worker-health
West Virginia University, School of Medicine, Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health, Morgantown, WV 26506-9190
Publication Date
Document Type
Final Grant Report
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Fiscal Year
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NIOSH Division
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
West Virginia University, School of Medicine, Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health, Morgantown, West Virginia