Atlanta to Host AIHce EXP 2020 

Read the Latest Update on AIHce EXP from AIHA's CEO
AIHA in the ATL
This summer, Atlanta will host the world’s largest gathering of industrial hygienists and occupational health and safety professionals. AIHce EXP 2020 will take place June 1–3 at the Atlanta Convention Center. On these pages, The Synergist highlights a few of the 210 scheduled technical sessions. To see a full list of sessions, to register, or for more information, visit the conference website.
OPENING GENERAL SESSION: LEADERSHIP UNDER PRESSURE Monday, June 1, 8:00–9:30 a.m. ASK THE EXPERT WITH SUDIP BOSE Monday, June 1, 10:00–11:00 a.m. Time and again, Dr. Sudip Bose has proven that he thrives amid chaos. Dr. Bose is a former Army major and Iraq War veteran who served one of the longest combat tours by a physician since World War II, a distinction that earned him the Bronze Star. Best known as the U.S. physician who treated Saddam Hussein following his capture in December 2003, Dr. Bose’s wartime experiences include providing medical care in the streets during the Second Battle of Fallujah. Following his return to the U.S., Dr. Bose implemented an emergency training program for the ER team at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, Texas. During the mass shooting in Odessa in 2019, Dr. Bose was called in to treat 13 gunshot victims. “What I found in my personal experience is you want to take much of the thought process out in a high-pressure situation to keep your calm,” Dr. Bose told Time magazine. “You want to automate.” Following his keynote address, Dr. Bose will answer questions from AIHce EXP attendees during an “ask the expert” session. RISKS TO OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH AT 5G SPEEDS Monday, June 1, 10:00–11:00 a.m. Fifth-generation wireless communication, known simply as 5G, promises clearer—and much faster—transmission of data. 5G is expected to help fulfill the promise of the “Internet of Things,” the name given to the developing network of connected machines. While 5G is already available in many cities in the U.S., Australia, and a few other countries, the rollout of 5G hardware is expected to take a few years. In the meantime, little is known about the exposure levels and potential health effects of 5G radio frequencies. This session presents the results of monitoring radio frequency energy from 5G equipment relevant to occupational exposures. COMMUNITY AND WORKPLACE EXPOSURES TO TOXIC GASES— CURRENT RESEARCH Monday, June 1, 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m. In July 2018, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry concluded that emissions of ethylene oxide from a medical sterilization company in suburban Chicago presented an elevated cancer risk for residents of Willowbrook, Illinois. In this session, a representative from an independent task force formed to investigate potential health risks to the Willowbrook community will describe the issues evaluated by the task force and explain their methodology. Other presentations will address carbon dioxide emissions in elementary schools and a craft brewery.  IMPLICATIONS OF REAL-WORLD USAGE CONDITIONS OF ELECTRONIC CIGARETTE EMISSIONS Monday, June 1, 2:00–3:00 p.m. RISKS, REWARDS, REGULATORY CHALLENGES, AND RECENT EVENTS WITH ELECTRONIC CIGARETTES Tuesday, June 2, 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m. Use of e-cigarettes among young people continues to rise, with a 78 percent increase among high school students from 2017 to 2018, according to a CDC report. At AIHce EXP 2020, presenters from the University of Oklahoma will discuss findings that suggest current laboratory methods significantly underestimate the amount of nicotine delivered by normal usage of third-generation electronic cigarettes. The next day, the Oklahoma team returns to summarize the evolution of e-cigarettes and provide context to findings from the scientific literature. RELATED:Electronic Cigarettes and the IH” in the May 2019 Synergist reports on updates to AIHA’s white paper on e-cigarettes. NIOSH RISK ASSESSMENT PRACTICES Tuesday, June 2, 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m. In February, NIOSH released Current Intelligence Bulletin 69: NIOSH Practices in Occupational Risk Assessment. CIB 69 describes the process NIOSH uses to determine the hazard associated with a chemical or other agent, collate relevant scientific evidence, evaluate data, and determine how much exposure would be harmful to workers. At AIHce EXP 2020, a presenter from NIOSH will discuss the models and assumptions that underpin the NIOSH risk assessment process. CURRENT AND FUTURE APPLICATIONS OF SENSORS FOR CHEMICAL DETECTION Tuesday, June 2, 3:15–4:15 p.m. Sensors hold tremendous promise for industrial hygiene, but more development is necessary before they can meet the needs of exposure assessments that rely on time-weighted average exposure data. The missing link, according to the presenters of this session, is the ability to provide information regarding exposure variability within a work shift. Only then will sensors be able to confirm or refute the adequacy of controls. RELATED: “Predictive Purposes” in the March 2018 Synergist explores the possibilities and potential problems of connected workplaces. LESSONS LEARNED ON EXPOSURE RISK MANAGEMENT IN AFGHANISTAN Tuesday, June 2, 3:15–4:15 p.m. In February, the U.S. and the Taliban agreed to a timetable for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, potentially bringing the 18-year conflict, America’s longest war, to an end. The presenters for this session, an occupational medicine physician and an EHS professional who served in Afghanistan, will share lessons from the front line on topics that include the disposal of ordnance, decontamination of bloodborne pathogens, detection of heavy metals and lead, injury prevention, and hand safety. RELATED: The cover article of the February 2020 Synergist discusses considerations for preventing exposures to bloodborne pathogens and potentially infectious materials outside of healthcare settings. THE FUTURE OF OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE BANDING, PART 1 Tuesday, June 2, 2:00–3:00 p.m. ROAD MAP AND CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE FUTURE OF OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE BANDING, PART 2 Tuesday, June 2, 3:15–4:15 p.m. NEAR-TERM IMPLICATIONS OF OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE BANDING, PART 3 Tuesday, June 2, 4:30–5:30 p.m. This series of sessions is a comprehensive examination of occupational exposure banding, the process of categorizing chemicals based on their toxicological potency to rapidly evaluate health risk. Part 1 focuses on the CB Nanotool developed to support researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. In Part 2, presenters will demonstrate how the occupational exposure banding process complements qualitative exposure assessment and discuss the potential inclusion of occupational exposure bands in Big Data. And Part 3 examines the potential use of banding to address the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s recent reclassification of welding fumes as carcinogenic. RELATED:  Several articles on the NIOSH occupational exposure banding process have appeared in The Synergist, including “The NIOSH Decision Logic for OEBs” (March 2016) and “The ‘Bandits’ Speak” (May 2018). USING BIOERGO SURVEILLANCE IN TOTAL WORKER HEALTH Wednesday, June 3, 9:15–10:15 a.m. Total Worker Health, a holistic approach to well-being, has a large presence at AIHce EXP 2020. In this session, one of several in the TWH track, an occupational medicine physician and the manager of a well-being program at a global company will discuss the application of wearable technology and Big Data to the management of manual handling fitness-for-duty programs and processes. Attendees will learn how to use ergonomic surveillance data to promote employee engagement. RELATED: Read about the implementation of TWH in the city of Portland, Oregon, in the October 2019 Synergist. THE FUTURE OF MACHINE LEARNING IN IH—MODERN PREDICTIVE MODELING APPROACHES Wednesday, June 3, 10:30–11:30 a.m. Machine learning—a form of artificial intelligence through which systems can learn from experience—holds promise as a way to process streams of IH data into useful knowledge. Presenters will discuss the application of machine learning to Bayesian analysis techniques that industrial hygienists can use to design risk prevention programs. The role of citizen science, which makes use of data collected by the general public for scientific purposes, will also be addressed. RELATED: Read “Predictive Purposes” in the March 2018 Synergist to learn about the possibilities of using Big Data in industrial hygiene. “The Tech Tide” in the February 2017 issue discusses citizen science. FIELD MEASUREMENTS TO PREDICT LEGIONELLA Wednesday, June 3, 10:30–11:30 a.m. This session presents the results of a study that suggests water quality parameters such as pH, free chlorine, and temperature are not predictive of the presence of Legionella in building water systems. Testing is recommended to determine a system’s overall Legionella colonization rate and risk for Legionnaires’ disease. RELATED:  Several recent Synergist articles have addressed Legionella. “The New Age of Legionella” from the June/July 2015 issue introduces AIHA’s guidance on assessing water systems in buildings. "Performing Legionella Source Risk Assessments" in the April 2019 issue presents a method of hazard analysis that can help prevent Legionella growth. And “Legionella Regulations in New York” in the June/July 2019 issue assesses the effectiveness of regulations in New York state and New York City intended to reduce the risk of exposure to Legionella. AIR SAMPLING RESEARCH UPDATES Wednesday, June 3, 2:15–3:15 p.m. The presentations in this session address cutting-edge topics in sampling and analysis. These topics include an explanation of how several common sampling errors can affect aerosol measurement, a call to reconsider the requirement for a minimum sample volume specified in many sampling methods, and a comparison of air sampling methods for peracetic acid in poultry plants. RELATED:  Read “Advice for Active Sampling” in the October 2018 Synergist and “Versatile and Vexing: The Many Uses and Hazards of Peracetic Acid” in the December 2016 Synergist. A discussion about minimum sampling volume can be found on Catalyst, AIHA’s online community. CLOSING GENERAL SESSION—THE NEUROSCIENCE OF INFLUENCE Wednesday, June 3, 3:30–4:45 p.m. The author and speaker René Rodriguez will explain how industrial hygienists can apply behavioral neuroscience to expand their influence at work. AIHA members may remember Rodriguez as the keynote speaker for the 2017 AIHA Fall Conference, where he offered advice IHs could use to change workers’ behaviors. “If you’re trying to influence behavior just based on data, it’s not going to work,” Rodriguez told attendees. 
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry: “Letter Health Consultation: Evaluation of Potential Health Impacts from Ethylene Oxide Emissions” (PDF, August 2018). Time: “‘Trauma Is Not New to Any of Us.’ Doctor Who Once Treated Saddam Hussein on Caring for Odessa Victims (September 2019). The Synergist: “Fall Conference Keynote: How Great Leaders Influence Behavior” (January 2018).

Although the print version of The Synergist indicated The IAQ Investigator's Guide, 3rd edition, was already published, it isn't quite ready yet. We will be sure to let readers know when the Guide is available for purchase in the AIHA Marketplace.
My apologies for the error.
- Ed Rutkowski, Synergist editor
Disadvantages of being unacclimatized:
  • Readily show signs of heat stress when exposed to hot environments.
  • Difficulty replacing all of the water lost in sweat.
  • Failure to replace the water lost will slow or prevent acclimatization.
Benefits of acclimatization:
  • Increased sweating efficiency (earlier onset of sweating, greater sweat production, and reduced electrolyte loss in sweat).
  • Stabilization of the circulation.
  • Work is performed with lower core temperature and heart rate.
  • Increased skin blood flow at a given core temperature.
Acclimatization plan:
  • Gradually increase exposure time in hot environmental conditions over a period of 7 to 14 days.
  • For new workers, the schedule should be no more than 20% of the usual duration of work in the hot environment on day 1 and a no more than 20% increase on each additional day.
  • For workers who have had previous experience with the job, the acclimatization regimen should be no more than 50% of the usual duration of work in the hot environment on day 1, 60% on day 2, 80% on day 3, and 100% on day 4.
  • The time required for non–physically fit individuals to develop acclimatization is about 50% greater than for the physically fit.
Level of acclimatization:
  • Relative to the initial level of physical fitness and the total heat stress experienced by the individual.
Maintaining acclimatization:
  • Can be maintained for a few days of non-heat exposure.
  • Absence from work in the heat for a week or more results in a significant loss in the beneficial adaptations leading to an increase likelihood of acute dehydration, illness, or fatigue.
  • Can be regained in 2 to 3 days upon return to a hot job.
  • Appears to be better maintained by those who are physically fit.
  • Seasonal shifts in temperatures may result in difficulties.
  • Working in hot, humid environments provides adaptive benefits that also apply in hot, desert environments, and vice versa.
  • Air conditioning will not affect acclimatization.
Acclimatization in Workers