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NEHA's Uncover EH

UNCOVER EH is a national research initiative between NEHA, the CDC and Baylor University to learn more about the environmental health (EH) profession through an online survey and in-person workshops of EH professionals working at public health departments. The online survey is scheduled to begin later this year. Find out more by clicking here!

Why is NEHA doing this?
  • Efforts of EH professionals are critical for protecting public health and the environment, yet these efforts often go unnoticed until problems occur (e.g., foodborne outbreaks, vector borne diseases, contaminated water supplies, disasters).

  • To understand the complexity of emerging EH issues and reported impacts to health department capacity, NEHA needs to hear directly from EH professionals.

  • Given the importance of EH to ensure healthy communities, it is very critical to understand the EH workforce and the challenges it faces to provide solutions to these needs.

What are the benefits?
  • An initiative of this magnitude will result in unprecedented and comprehensive documentation of the critical functions performed by environmental health professionals across all levels of government.

  • A national-level report will provide a foundation for leaders and decision makers to make evidence-based decisions regarding workforce capacity and public health safety for their communities.

  • Additionally, this information can serve as tool to plan future EH training needs and to better understand emerging EH issues within their local jurisdictions.

  • Results of the study will be shared within non-governmental organizations, private industry, and other sectors with environmental and public health interests.

How NEHA will survey EH professionals?
  • Initially a web-based survey will be sent to EH professionals to collect information about demographics, characteristics, practice areas, and major challenges.

  • Then regional workshops with up to 25 EH professionals will be held to discuss in detail the survey results and identified challenges and emerging issues.

  • This initiative is currently focused on EH professionals working at health departments. Opportunities to expand the survey to include EH professionals at other governmental agencies, non-governmental agencies, and private industry will be explored in the future.

Five Ways You Can Help!
  1. Register to receive the email survey

  2. Sign up for UNCOVER EH email updates

  3. Give an UNCOVER EH presentation at your staff meeting (slides provided here!)

  4. Share the UNCOVER EH Fact Sheet with your health department's leadership

  5. Spread the word to your colleagues and local EH communities (newsletters, emails, website link, etc.)

Please contact Ned Therien, Washington State's NEHA Regional Vice President, via email at with any questions or concerns that you may have.

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