As a nurse practitioner (NP), you are often on the front lines for patients experiencing environmental health issues. The Occupational and Environmental Health Specialty Practice Group (SPG) offers a unique opportunity to interactively collaborate with colleagues who share interest or clinical expertise in these areas. As an SPG member, you’ll have access to a cutting-edge, online forum where you can engage in discussions, document sharing and knowledge exchange with fellow NPs. Come learn, share and help progress the development of theory and practice in occupational and environmental health.
NPs are often the first line of defense for patients experiencing environmental health exposures in a variety of settings, including employee clinics, primary care and specialty clinics, communities and other settings. Environmental exposures pose health risks to people of all ages and walks of life, thus rendering this SPG broadly relevant to NPs. Environmental health science is a dynamic and rapidly evolving field. Therefore, evidence-based occupational and environmental health practice requires ongoing knowledge development. Additionally, the field is lined with opportunities for policy development in consultation with workplaces and local, state and federal governments. I am pleased to co-chair this SPG and look forward to engaging and networking with NPs. I bring many years of research experience in environmental health, chiefly in the areas of lead (Pb) and other heavy metals in food, water, air and soil, as well as the relationship between airborne particulate matter and asthma. I trust that this background will serve me in meeting the goals of this SPG, including optimization of professional engagement and patient outcomes.
Occupational health is a blend of preventative care and workplace health care and is a perfect fit for any NP who seeks a career with variety and meaningful impact on the health and safety of workers. As a NP in occupational health since 1992 and practice owner since 1998, I have provided workplace health and safety programs from hire to retire. I find NPs today can work in many sectors, providing job specific health assessments or fitness for duty exams, treating and restoring health problems, conducting surveillance to prevent illness and injury, and helping employees find a work-life balance. Occupational and environmental health is a unique field that draws from pure science to clinical and research experiences to study the impact of the environment and workplace hazards on human health and disease while investigating cause and effect to deliver sound evidence-based practice. It opens the opportunity for advocacy and legislation, pulling together communities and workplaces for change. Our search for new knowledge by combining health with good business practice helps workplaces to maintain a safe worker environment and a prosperous bottom line to realize healthy workplaces for all.
Join this growing SPG community and engage with other like-minded NPs with an interest in occupational and/or environmental health. Take part in interactive discussion and debate, gain support and explore Q&As and always be on top of the latest available news, education and information.