Online Program

Evaluating the gulf oil spill health and safety training: Examining effectiveness among worker sub-populations in the gulf states

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sue Ann Sarpy, MS, PhD, Sarpy and Associates, Charlottesville, VA
Felicia Rabito, MPH, PhD, Epidemiology Department/School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Tulane Unviersity, New Orleans, LA
Nancy Goldstein, M.S., Ph.D., Sarpy and Associates, LLC, Charlottesville, VA
Ian Muse, B.S., Sarpy and Associates, LLC, Charlottesville, VA
The need for rigorous evaluations for objectively evaluating the program effectiveness of various health and safety and emergency preparedness and disaster response training is long established. In response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences facilitated the presentation of health and safety training to over 147,000 workers (e.g., on-shore and off-shore volunteers, technical specialists) across the four Gulf States. The Gulf Oil Spill (GOS) health and safety training was designed to assist the workers in rapid and efficient mitigation of continued environmental contamination while ensuring minimal impact to public health. A comprehensive evaluation process was developed to assess effectiveness of the GOS health and safety training. This evaluation process was designed to gather and integrate quantitative and qualitative information regarding the workers' satisfaction with the training as well as knowledge acquisition and transfer of training to improved health and safety behaviors during the clean-up activities. Evaluation data was gathered from two distinct worker sub-populations from the Gulf States, that is Islenos and Vietnamese workers assisting in the environmental clean-up efforts. Significant and meaningful differences were found with respect to the training-related opinions, knowledge, skills, abilities and behaviors reported among the sub-populations. Results will be discussed vis-à-vis making quality improvements to the training, identifying best practices, and making better use of available resources and strategies. The application of this evaluation system and resulting evidence will be highlighted including implications for strengthening other worker health and safety programs in disaster response and guiding related policy development.

Learning Areas:

Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
Explain the Gulf Oil Spill (GOS) health and safety training evaluation model in assessing worker health and safety in disaster response. Discuss the results of the GOS health and safety training evaluation for various sub-populations of workers assisting in the environmental clean-up activities. Describe the use of the results in ensuring continuous quality improvement of the worker health and safety training and related policy development regarding disaster response.

Keyword(s): Evaluation, Occupational Safety

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have over 20 years of applied and academic experience in intervention effectiveness research. I have served as principal scientist for various research projects that evaluate the effectiveness of interventions including labor and minority worker safety training, and leadership and emergency preparedness training programs for public health workers. I have also served as lead evaluator for the South Central Center for Public Health Preparedness and South Central Public Health Training Center for Tulane University.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.