Online Program

Enhancing the Public Health Assessment with the PACE-EH protocol in a Los Angleles County Community

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 : 1:10 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Russell Bartlett, MPHc, Environmental Health Investigations Branch, California Department of Public Health, Richmond/, CA
Since 1990, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has been conducting public health assessments (PHA) at US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Superfund Sites through a cooperative agreement with the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).  A PHA investigates past, present, and future health implications for local communities resulting from exposures to site-related contaminants. In several CDPH assessments, the local communities conveyed many non-site related environmental concerns. To address these concerns, CDPH modified the framework of its community outreach approach at two PHAs being conducted in the City of South Gate, a USEPA-recognized environmental justice community in Los Angeles County.

CDPH adopted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health” (PACE-EH). PACE-EH is a procedure that motivates communities and local agencies to collaboratively explore, identify, and initiate action to improve their community.

Using the PACE-EH as a guide, CDPH promoted the development of a “Community Environmental Health Assessment Team” (CEHAT), a unified multi-agency and community-based group. The CEHAT collects the issues, devises policies, and facilitates the work to remedy the community’s environmental health concerns. It distributes a qualitative community survey to collect local environmental health concerns and uses this information to rank the concerns, create action steps, and manage improvements.

To the greatest extent possible, CDPH will integrate and evaluate the CEHAT’s conclusions into the PHAs or other related documents. PACE-EH expands the PHA process, activates the community, and increases CDPH’s capacity to address environmental health concerns in California.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Environmental health sciences
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify the steps of the PACE-EH process. Define an environmental health risk assessment. Describe the methodology for combining PACE-EH and risk assessment at communities that contain a Superfund site. Access the barriers to combining PACE-EH and risk assessment, and design strategies to overcome them.

Keyword(s): Community Health Assessment, Environmental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the principal author of several environmental risk assessment documents including three public health assessments conducted for communities adjacent to Superfund sites. All documents were for investigations conducted in California and funded by the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. I am particularly focused on strengthening the public health assessment community outreach process to include the collection, prioritization, and analysis of non-site related environmental health concerns within a community.
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.