Topics A to Z

As part of NEHA's continuos effort to provide convenient access to information and resources, we have gathered together for you the links in this section. Our mission is "to advance the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all,” as well as to educate and inform those outside the profession.

Chuck Lichon, R.S., M.P.H., Deputy Health Officer at District Health Department #2 in Michigan, developed a Children’s Environmental Health Power Point Program with the financial assistance of the Dow Chemical Company, Midland, MI.  The Power Points are approximately 25-35 minutes in length, allowing for a presentation to be made during one classroom setting, or to be used for a community presentation, allowing time for Q & A.  Some of the topics include: Sunwise, Body Art, Household Hazardous Waste, Meth, Recreational Water, and more.  They are free to download and use for presentations in your school, health department community presentations, or for media use.  Changes in the presentations should not be made without consent from the author, and/or the NEHA Board of Directors.  

The Body Art PowerPoints is available via the link listed below:   

Chuck Lichon, R.S., M.P.H.
Additional Topics A to Z: General Environmental Health


Various methodologies have been utilized in hand-hygiene (HH) research to measure the quality and compliance rates of hand washing. Some notable examples are direct observation, self-report, image quantification of fluorescence, microbial sampling, automated systems, and electronically assisted devices. While direct observation is considered the gold standard of HH monitoring systems, its methodological limitations (e.g., high staffing demands, participant reactivity, and undersampling) have yet to be overcome. As a result, there is renewed interest in developing technologies or methods of assessment that are cost-effective, accurate, and not intrusive. This article provides a brief review of HH monitoring systems while presenting a less resource-intensive methodology utilizing image analysis of fluorescence to assess hand washing. Results indicate that the proposed HH protocol could be used to replace human visual analysis of fluorescence, as well as provide a less resource-intensive option to assess HH under controlled conditions. Future implications and the need for additional research, such as cross-validating the results in a real-world clinical setting, are discussed.

June 2016
June 2016
78.10 | 14-20
Neil Deochand, MS, MA, Michelle E. Deochand, MS


We surveyed public health and vector control agencies in the U.S. to identify barriers restricting the implementation of geospatial modeling for West Nile virus (WNV) control. We conducted 18 standardized interviews with public health and vector control agencies in states with the highest cumulative human WNV cases. Agencies were organized by their implementation of geospatial modeling (Initial: Implementation and Support; Internal: Surveillance and Mitigation, and External: Outreach and Communication) and thematic analysis was used to identify barriers and best practices. Initial: Implementation and Support agencies reported funding and educational barriers, while Internal: Surveillance and Mitigation agencies reported surveillance data challenges and mistrust of geospatial modeling as limiting geospatial modeling usage. Agencies involved in External: Outreach and Communication reported policy guidelines and lack of public interest as barriers to using geospatial modeling for WNV control. To overcome these challenges, we identified the use of unified resource programs, local data repositories, and multi-stakeholder taskforces for addressing these challenges to WNV control. The findings from this study can be used to help improve WNV control within the U.S. and might be equally valuable for preemptively mitigating the impacts of emerging and reemerging mosquito-borne diseases.


June 2018
June 2018
80.10 | 24-31
Bryan Moy, MPH, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles, Ryan Harrigan, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles, Hilary Godwin, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles
Additional Topics A to Z: Technology

The use of letter grades, colored placards, or a numbered score is seen across the country to convey to restaurant patrons information on how safe and clean a restaurant is (i.e., the findings of the local health department's inspection of the facility). This column goes beyond exploring this practice or its efficacy—it explores how local health departments go about developing such programs and if unnecessary staff and resources are being consumed by such projects. The column poses an interesting question on the creation of a unified brand to support capacity and calls upon the environmental health leadership to develop and present a standard by which a local health department can quickly and efficiently launch a grading or placarding program.

Read the full column.

September 2015
78.2 | 34-35
Darryl Booth, MBA


Since 2002, the national Environmental Health Tracking Program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided vital support to state environmental public health efforts while simultaneously building a nationwide network of state, local, and academic partners to improve our nation’s capacity to understand and respond to environmental threats to public health. As part of program review and strategic planning, national thought leaders in environmental public health were convened to assess progress, identify gaps and challenges, and provide recommendations for enhancing the utility and impact of the Tracking Program. Several opportunities were identified. Chief among these was the need for continued and expanded CDC leadership to develop a coordinated Tracking Program agenda identifying specific scientific goals, data needs, and initiatives. Recommendations for future growth included expanded data availability and program coverage: i.e., making data available at the community scale and establishing tracking programs in all 50 states. Finally, a set of recommendations emphasizing communication to decision makers and the public was made that will be integral to the future utility and success of the Tracking Program.

June 2017
June 2017
79.10 | 14-19
Mary A. Fox, MPH, PhD, Sheriza Baksh, MPH, Juleen Lam, MHS, PhD, Beth Resnick, MPH, DrPH