Health Advisory Committee (OH-AC)
Health Advisory Committee (OH-AC) has four primary goals:
An estimated 125 million Americans go to work every day. At many workplaces, employers and their employees rely on occupational health providers for health information and care. Occupational and environmental health professionals represent a workplace health system that parallels the general public health system in dealing with threats, hazards, and injuries unique to workplace organizations. Following the World Trade Center and anthrax terrorist attacks in the fall of 2001, the demands on and expectations of occupational health professionals changed dramatically. Their scope of responsibility and the requirements for their expertise and instant response grew from dealing with workplace-specific hazards and injuries to being prepared to confront mass-casualty weapons and other large-scale threats to the workplace. Occupational health professionals now need to make themselves expert advisors on chemical, biological and radiological threats as well as on naturally occurring emerging and reemerging infectious diseases.
One important role of the Occupational Health Disaster Expert Network is to receive and to provide high-quality information on threats, vulnerabilities, opportunities, and steps to improve the protection of workers and their environments. It will accomplish this in part by providing up-and-down links of occupational health professionals with the HHS (Office of Public Health Emergency Preparedness), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC's NIOSH), the Healthcare and Public Health Information Sharing and Analysis Center (HPH-ISAC) and the Infrastructure Monitoring, Analysis, and Coordination (IMAC) branch of the Information Analysis and Infrastructure Protection (IAIP) directorate of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). OHDEN will also provide lateral links between occupational health professionals on the front lines of disaster response for workplaces.
OH professionals are in a unique position to supplement ongoing health surveillance activities. To be able to fulfill these responsibilities, the OH community must have access to preparedness and threat information and a secure communications link to communicate with fellow OH professionals as well as HHS and DHS.
OHDEN is the embodiment of the Occupational Health Advisory Committee (OH AC)'s activities. It represents a dynamic network of professionals and applicable resources.
An essential resource to enable occupational health to fulfill its potential as a parallel public-health network to preserve the critical infrastructure of the nationís workforce and productivity.
OHDEN in developmentThe most recent OHDEN demo / introductory presentation (including example crisis and questions, and the palpable dreams of the committee's imagination), is available for unrestricted download and viewing in PowerPoint.
OHDEN_Demonstration (May 2005, 10 Meg)
Since the program and the resources are still very much a pilot program, the only current users are the individuals actively involved in its evaluation and planning. The OHDEN content / collaboration site within HSIN is only available upon application and approval by its planners. This should change in just the next months, as the program becomes more stable and better supported by financial and intellectual resources.
Links for registered
and vetted OHDEN members:
Here for the secure entrance to the HSIN-HPH (Homeland Security Information Network, Health & Public Health sector portal.Otherwise, e-mail OHDEN's moderator, Gary Greenberg, MD for questions or to be listed as an interested participant when OHDEN is activated for wider enrollment and general use.
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