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Testing… Testing 1, 2, 3

2013 January 7

By Janice Lee        

Arsenic element from periodic tableSo here we are preparing for the upcoming Public Stakeholder Workshop on the Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) Program’s new health assessment of Inorganic Arsenic (January 8-9, 2013).  The goal of the public workshop is to provide an opportunity for stakeholders to share their views about the assessment.  

An IRIS assessment is important to organizations that make decisions about protecting public health because it provides information about a chemical’s hazard and the relationship between the dose of the chemical and the magnitude of its biological response or health effect.  

We’re interested in hearing from the public about what types of studies exist about inorganic arsenic and what is currently known about the chemical. We’re also interested in hearing why various organizations need a health assessment of inorganic arsenic.  For example, what sort of questions do they have to answer or what decisions do they have to make about the chemical?

The knowledge we gather from this important part of the process will help us better understand what should be included in the final assessment in order to meet the needs of the American public. 

You can participate in the workshop in person or remotely by webinar. The webinar option is great since many people who are interested in attending can’t come in person. Today we did a dry run to try out the webinar system and everything worked just fine. Now that we’re all set, I’m eager to see how many people join us using this technology.

As a graduate student, my doctoral work was on arsenic chemistry and health effects. One of the projects I worked on evaluated arsenic removal at a water treatment facility in Holly, MI. When I graduated, I thought I was done with arsenic. I just had to finish my manuscript and thought I would probably never work on arsenic again. Well, that was 10 years ago and here I am, the co-chemical manager for the inorganic arsenic assessment! 

I’m excited to be working on arsenic again, and in a different capacity this time around. Instead of doing research, I’m applying the research that has already been done to inform the development of an assessment that will be used as part of the science to inform future public health decisions about inorganic arsenic.

For more information on the workshop, check out the website:

Please join us. We’re looking forward to hearing from you next week!

About the author:  Janice Lee is a health scientist in EPA’s IRIS Program. She has been with EPA for the past seven years and has a Ph.D. in Environmental Health Sciences.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action.

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2 Responses leave one →
  1. Arman.- permalink
    January 7, 2013

    Let Us Support……!

    Well done Dr. Lee….. Good luck !!!!!

  2. Anne Smylie permalink
    January 7, 2013

    Dr. Lee, I am intrigued by the new work you are undertaking in the field of Inorganic Arsenic and the Public Health. I am a survivor of Intense, Severe Arsenic Poisoning although, it may have been a criminal assault versus an inadvertent toxic exposure. The actual source was never identified to me. Recovery was a long time in the making, but I am approximately 7 years without toxic exposure in arsenic. For my health, I follow research pertaining to where toxic exposure areas are located and the effects and cures/treatments for the remaining lives of the victims. My case was especially unique, in that experimental treatment is what saved my life. I will continue to follow your posts as you provide additional information. I wish you many successes in this portion of your career path. Respectfully, Anne M. Smylie – Canton, MI

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