PRHE at American Public Health Association 2018 meeting

The Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment invites you to the following events at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting & Exposition 2018.
November 10-14, 2018 at the San Diego Convention Center

Read the media advisory here.

Monday, November 12th

Reviews in environmental health: How systematic are they?
Session 3081.0 Environmental Health Poster Session 6
Presenter: Patrice Sutton, MPH
Time: 10:30-11:30am
Location: Hall A/C, Board 6

Systematic review methodologies are gaining traction in the environmental health field, with aims to inform research and evidence-based decision-making. How the methods and results of a systematic review compare to those of a traditional expert-based narrative review on the same topic has not been empirically evaluated. We found that systematic reviews are not all equal in quality, but that systematic reviews result in more transparent and reproducible results than the non-systematic reviews on the same topic. Environmental health scientists should be trained in improved methods for evidence integration and work closely with information specialists in conducting reviews.

Tuesday, November 13th

Reproduction, environment and equity: Public health responds to the evidence
Session 4061.1
Presenter: Marya Zlatnik, MD
Time: 8:30-8:45 AM
Location: Room 25C

Too often, environmental hazards are overlooked when they matter the most. Preconception and prenatal exposures affect everyone, and low income and minority populations are more at risk. In this session, we focus on the tools and experiences that highlight the developmental basis for children’s vulnerability to diverse toxins under a wide range of circumstances. Speakers will address: (1) what kinds of environmental risks patients and health professionals seek expert information about; (2) specific threats to preconception and prenatal health that result from a changing climate and how minority populations are affected; and (3) tools and resources for increasing literacy and the quality of care for environmental health from preconception through adulthood.

The Promise and Perils of Using the Toxic Substances Control Act to Advance Health Equity Now
Session 4152.0
Time: 10:30am-12:00pm
Location: Room 28E

Chemicals are ubiquitous in modern society, with industrial applications, consumer products and building materials recognized as major sources of human exposure. Many chemicals (e.g., solvents, toxic metals, halogenated flame retardants, phthalate plasticizers, per- and poly-fluorinated compounds) have sufficient data showing they are associated with or causing adverse health effects at exposures the public is currently experiencing. Primary prevention through policy could significantly improve public health. Recognizing the need to prevent harmful exposures, the 2016 Lautenberg Amendments to the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) gave the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) new authorities. Some of the central issues include requirements to account for the special vulnerabilities of susceptible populations which is critical to advancing health equity and environmental justice. The panel will discuss the new legal, science and policy requirements and make recommendations to improve public health and enhance equity.

Trish KomanModerator
Patricia Koman, MPP, PhD

Health equity implications of the Lautenberg TSCA and risk evaluation of the first ten high volume chemicals
Veena Singla, PhD




The New TSCA Law: Too Much Like “TSCA Classic”
Adam Finkel, ScD, CIH



Gartner photo

Legal foundations and new developments in evaluating existing chemical program under the Lautenberg Amendments to the Toxic Substance Control Act
Eve Gartner, JD


harrisonCase study of Methylene Chloride
Robert Harrison, MD, MPH



60 MiNueTs Toxic
Film Session FF09 Health on the Inside and Outside
Presenter: Susan Lamontagne, Public Interest Media Group
Time: 12:15-12:40pm
Location: Room 1 A/B

Read the press release here.

How are toxic chemicals undermining our health? Why is the government failing to protect us? What games does industry play to keep selling dangerous products? And what can you do about it? Join us for a screening of our video series 60 MiNueTs Toxic which features some unlikely investigative journalists interviewing some of the top leaders in environmental health science from Columbia, Harvard, Mount Sinai, Boston Children’s Hospital, and UCSF.

APHA film fest e-version 1

Exposure to formaldehyde and effects on asthma outcomes: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Part of Session 4348.0 Chemicals and Public Health
Presenter: Patrice Sutton, MPH

Time: 3:40-4:00pm
Location: Room 28E

Formaldehyde is found in virtually all homes and buildings. Low-income populations are disproportionately at risk of exposure. The relationship between asthma and exposure to formaldehyde has been under evaluation by government agencies for the last few decades; however asthma was not included in EPA’s economic analysis of the benefits of regulating formaldehyde. We conducted a systematic review to answer the question: “is exposure to formaldehyde associated with diagnosis, signs, symptoms, exacerbation, or other measures of asthma in humans?”

Wednesday, November 14th

Flame Retardant Chemicals and Links to Chronic Disease: Emerging Threats and Policy Actions
Part of Law Session 5094.0 Legal Regulation, Roles and Responsibilities to Address Environmental Health Hazards
Presenter: Veena Singla, PhD
Time: 10:54-11:06am
Location: Room 4

Used in every day products and building materials since the 1970’s, flame retardant chemicals are a prime example of chemicals increasing the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders for children. Flame retardant chemicals are associated with health concerns including loss of IQ in children, ADHD, fertility problems, and cancer. In recent years, scientists, health professionals, and advocates have explored interventions at the individual, family and policy levels to reduce exposure to harmful flame retardants. Policy approaches include advocating for disclosure/ labeling of chemicals, corporate chemical policies, flame retardant prohibitions and research for safer flame retardants.