Providing Service to the Community

The Southern California Education and Research Center goes beyond training our graduate students, residents, and working professionals. We provide a wide variety of services to the community. Each academic department, as well as the Outreach Program itself, delivers assistance in many ways.

Through the years, the Outreach Program has conducted extensive activities that benefit the professional occupational safety and health community as well as the broader population. Examples of these activities demonstrate the wide-ranging scope and impact of the program:

Center-wide Administration:

In 2012/13 alone The ERC co-sponsored four OH conferences – American Occupational Health Conference in Los Angeles; Occupational Neurology in San Francisco; Arizona Safety and Health Symposium; APA/ NIOSH in Los Angeles.

Dr. Krause provided an invited introductory presentation at a public hearing of Cal/OSHA’s Standard Setting Board.

Dr. Krause works in collaboration with Culinary Workers Union Local 226, the University of Nevada at Las Vegas and the Chinese Progressive Association on research affecting hotel housekeepers and restaurant workers.

The Occupational Medicine Program:

Offers a monthly CME Grand Round for occupational health physicians and nurses in Orange County.

The faculty provide outreach talks on a range of occupational and environmental health topics to labor organizations and community groups (e.g. the Orange County Asian and Pacific Islanders Community Alliance, and Latino Health Access).

Faculty are active members of national and regional occupational and environmental medicine societies. Dr. Baker was the past-president of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology; Dr. Kleinman is Chair of the State of California Scientific Review Panel for Toxic Substances

The Industrial Hygiene Program:

Provides presentations and invited talks at conferences nationally and internationally by faculty including California Air Resources Board, Chinese Consulate General, Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science, American Industrial Hygiene Conference (every year).

Is regularly covered by media locally and nationally on topics such as research findings on school bus filtration systems

Partners with BSI Group, Inc. and Kaiser Permanente to present the EHSsentials Symposium for Environment, Safety and Healthcare.

The Occupational and Environmental Nursing Program:

Dr. Thomas supervised students who provided health screening to attendees at a Construction and Building Trades Union convention with 400 attendees.

The Program is serving as ongoing consultant to workplace injury prevention project for JDSU Corporation, working with an OHN and professional trainer in providing literature review, logistic support to program development, statistical analysis, presentation development for internal and external dissemination, and writing for publication of successful program outcomes.

Faculty and students serve as officers in professional associations. Dr. Robbins is President-Elect of the California State Association of Occupational Health Nurses.

Dr. Robbins serves on the Consultant Panel of the US Environmental Protection Agency.

The Outreach Office:

Offers a video on the website, “Preventing Injury and Illness for Service Workers.” (See link on right.)

Conducted training under a grant from Advanced Sterilization Products for 180 occupational health and safety professionals and workers in health care facilities; trained 132 in a series of 1 1/2-2 hour webinars on the topic “2012 Revised HazCom: What It Means for Healthcare Workers and Facilities.”

Hosts the bibliography/research database for the NORA Service Sector Accommodations subgroup. (See link on right).

Provided BRN contact hours for a session on “Managing Complex ADA/FMLA Cases” at a meeting of the Arizona Valle del Sol Chapter of the American Association of Occupational Health. (a, b, c, e)

Submitted a grant proposal in collaboration with Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project (MICOP to provide workplace safety training to hundreds of farmworkers who speak only their native language, Mixtec or Zapotec.

Future Plans

The SCERC plans to place an increased emphasis on Outreach in the coming years. There are several initiatives that will be implemented in achievable stages. Some of the initiatives rely heavily on the participation of members of the SCERC Advisory Board and program advisory committees.

Follow-up Webinars

Academic programs will offer a webinar to program alumni and others to discuss workplace health and safety issues in the form of case studies that have arisen at their workplaces. Each webinar will be moderated by a faculty member or member of a SCERC advisory committee. The Industrial Hygiene program would take the lead on this activity because participants from medicine and nursing are constrained by HIPAA from discussing cases, even anonymously. This activity would benefit employers of the alumni by providing suggestions for improved practices, controls, etc.

Consultation Services

Programs will offer organizations and businesses in minority communities or with minority owners or leadership brief consultations on their IIPP or other workplace practices. Since this is a brief commitment, the topic would probably be limited to, e.g., is the ventilation system adequate, do they need a medical surveillance program, do they have slip, trip and fall hazards they may be aware of?

Members of the SCERC Advisory Board and committee members, most of whom are practicing professionals, would mentor the participating students, under faculty supervision. Second year students and PhD candidates, either individually or in interdisciplinary groups of two or three would spend part of a day at a business, write a report on their findings, discuss the report with the mentor and faculty supervisor and report back to the business on what they found and suggestions for improvements.

Consultation Services – Workplace Stress Reduction

This option is a more thorough concept for implementing b., specifically designed around Workplace Stress. The goal would be to develop an occupational total worker health practice internship training program in collaboration with the Center for Social Epidemiology led by Dr. Peter Schnall for ERC-supported students to be able to go to businesses and offer to conduct a workplace health survey/screening about psychosocial stressors and health outcomes such as obesity/high blood pressures, etc.

The workplace evaluation would use survey instruments to assess psychosocial stressors and psychological health outcomes and might also include assessment of physical health outcomes such as weight or blood pressure. The collected data would be entered into a computer software program, analyzed and a report prepared for the worksite with recommendations for workplace interventions that would also provide tools for employees and managers for dealing with stressors.

Newsletter

The Center intends to develop an online newsletter that includes new research findings and aggregates articles on occupational health and safety and provides links to additional resources.

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