Peer Review: Preventing Respiratory Diseases from Exposures Caused by Dampness

NIOSH Scientific Information Quality – Peer Review Agenda

Required Elements for Initial Posting

Title: NIOSH Alert: Preventing Respiratory Diseases from Exposures Caused by Dampness in Office Buildings, Schools, and Other Nonindustiral Buildings

Cross-Clearance Agencies: None

Anticipated Date of Dissemination: July 1, 2010

Subject of Planned Report: Occupational respiratory disease from damp building conditions.

Purpose of Planned Report: To provide workers and employers with guidance for disease prevention and appropriate environmental response.

Type of Dissemination: Influential

Timing of the Review:3-6 weeks

Primary Disciplines or Expertise Needed for Review: medical and industrial hygiene

Type of Review: Individual

Anticipated Number of Reviewers: 10

Reviewers Selected by: NIOSH

Public Nominations Requested for Reviewers: No

Opportunities for the Public to Comment: Publication of a request for public comments

Peer Reviewers Provided with Public Comments: No

Charge to Peer Reviewers: See file 12-IEQ-Charge-Memo-06-11-2010

Peer Reviewers:

  1. Mark Mendell
    Academic and Professional Credentials: PhD, Scientist/Epidemiologist
    Organizational Affiliation: Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory
    Areas of Expertise, Discipline, or Relevant Experience: indoor air quality
    Recommended by: NIOSH
  2. Laura Kolb
    Academic and Professional Credentials: MPH
    Organizational Affiliation: Environmental Protection Agency
    Areas of Expertise, Discipline, or Relevant Experience: advisor on indoor environments
    Recommended by: NIOSH

Charge to Peer Reviewers:

The Alert will provide the most recent scientific information on the relationships between exposures to damp indoor environments and respiratory symptoms, rhinitis/sinusitis, asthma, and hypersensitivity pneumonitis. It will present in a current, concise, and compelling manner (1) scientific information from NIOSH research and research of others concerning health effects attributed to exposures to damp indoor environments, (2) case clusters of asthma and cases of hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and (3) recommendations on how to respond to damp indoor environments.

The target audience is teachers’ unions, government workers’ unions, advocacy groups such as the American Lung Association, State public health staff who handle indoor air quality (IAQ) complaints, occupational health professionals, the approximately 200 annual Health Hazard Evaluation (HHE) employee and union requestors (and their management) who request NIOSH HHEs involving indoor dampness, and the general public.

The review should address issues of comprehension, scientific accuracy, appropriateness of the material, and depth of scope. The purpose of the review is to obtain broad opinions and improve the quality of the Alert document. Comments will be used in our revision of the document.

Specific items in the template relate to the following questions:

  1. Is this document clear and comprehensible to a lay audience?
  2. Do you have concerns about technical or factual accuracy?
  3. Do you have concerns about our inclusion of the second bullet under “Workers” on page 2? If so, please explain.
  4. Have we included inappropriate information?
  5. Are there omissions of information that are critical for the intended audience of workers and management?
  6. Do the recommendations in this Alert differ substantially from recommendations by other organizations?
  7. Other comments you might have?

Page last reviewed: June 28, 2010