Agenda

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PRECONFERENCE COURSES
MONDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2021
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

#1 Arthropods and Occupational Health Issues
Instructors: Aristea Lubar; Maureen Thompson, RN, COHN-S, RBP; Robin Rabyn, PhD

Using examples from research projects and case studies, this multi-faceted class will be take a deep dive into research with arthropods and the associated risks. In Part I, Aristea Lubar will share her experiences performing high-risk procedures when working with human malaria in the mosquito model. Exposure risks at all life stages of parasite and arthropod and risk mitigation practices that may not always fit the ideal biosafety mold will be explored. In Part II, Robin Rabyn will give an overview of emerging technologies in the field of arthropod-borne disease research, including technologies to engineer disease resistant mosquitoes, gene drive technologies to rapidly facilitate the spread of disease resistance into a population and technologies to kill mosquito populations. It will also highlight the risks associated with these technologies and the current approaches to mitigate these risks as well as further directions and concerns in the field. Both sessions will include case studies by Maureen Thompson. The first considers post-exposure treatment for malaria, and the second focuses on a laboratory zika infection.

1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
#2 Designing and Implementing Occupational Health Programs
Instructors: Philip Harber, MD, MPh; Marcia Isakari, MD, MPh; Amy Behrman, MD

Institutions of all sizes need a robust occupational health program to prevent biologic exposures, treat their consequences, to meet the inspection requirements of regulatory and certifying agencies. This class will begin by providing an overview of the regulations, workplace hazards, and hazard control practices that need to be considered in program design. Three specific protective programs will then be presented and discussed in small group sessions – respiratory protection, post-exposure management using viral vectors as an example, and surveillance for animal allergies. Differences in approaches for smaller colleges, large research universities, healthcare systems and freestanding/corporate research organizations will be explored. The three instructors will share insights gained from years of leading occupational health departments. They wrote many chapters for the soon-to-be-published book, Occupational Health for Higher Education and Research Institutions, for which Dr. Harber is the primary editor.

COLLOQUIUM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 5, 2021
 
Morning Session

SARS CoV-2 Latest Information: Transmission, Variants, Vaccines

Workforce Occupational Health Issues
Includes: Employee testing/screening programs, vaccinations, accommodating needs of COVID long-haulers, preparing for flu season, making decisions based on variants and waning immunity.

Afternoon Session

COVID and Associated Mental Health and Workplace Wellness Issues
Includes: Remote work/telework issues; Workplace stress; Grief – loss or illness of family and friends; Increases in substance use disorders; Family work life conflict and fit issues

Travel Medicine in Times of COVID

Update on Therapeutics and Post-Covid Conditions

 
 
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2021
Morning Session

Research Labs and Animal Facilities handling current and future Infectious Diseases

  • Issues related to Animals and Infectious Disease Research
  • Latest information on Respirators
  • Discussion: How are you going to maintain preparedness?
Afternoon Session

Regulatory Update: New Guidelines for TB Testing and Federal COVID Workplace Safety Rules

Example from Large Organization on Pandemic Preparedness – Past and Future

DISCUSSION: How can we be ready for the next pandemic?
What are gaps? How can we communicate better? How can decisions be made quicker? What if pandemic doesn’t have vaccine? How can we all make improvements? What kinds of planning needs to be done now (as organisms are always one step ahead of us)?

 
POSTCONFERENCE COURSE
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2021
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

Ventilation and Design for Offices, Laboratories and Vivariums
Instructor: Pam Greenley, CIH

The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light the impact of ventilation on the workplace and the importance of airflow in keeping people healthy. In this course we will explore the types of ventilation systems, the basics of pressurization, types and application of filters, and factors to consider for running systems optimally. Whether you need to review and improve existing systems, or are renovating or building new facilities, this course will provide you with the basics so you that you can confidently work with architects, engineers and facility managers to ensure a healthy workplace.