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Pediatric Environmental Health Toolkit

                 Endorsed by:
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Safe and Healthy Children curriculum addresses environmental health in farmworker children

The children of migrant farmworkers are at risk for toxic chemical exposures and other environmental hazards. PSR has released a new train-the-trainer curriculum and education packet on preventing harm to this vulnerable population. Targeting staff and community health workers of the Head Start Seasonal and Migrant Farmworker program, the curriculum augments PSR’s Pediatric Environmental Health Toolkit. It includes hands-on activities for parents, brief anecdotes about chemical exposures, information on chemical policy, and principles of participatory education. 

Funded by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, PSR worked with partner organizations Academy for Educational Development and Health Outreach Partners to provide training for Migrant and Seasonal Head Start workers on the unique vulnerability of children, exposures to environmental hazards, and prevention strategies.

View the Safe and Healthy Children curriculum

What is the Toolkit?

The Toolkit is a combination of easy-to-use reference guides for health providers and user friendly health education materials on preventing exposures to toxic chemicals and other substances that affect infant and child health. The materials are visually appealing, practical and easy to use. The Toolkit is endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

The Toolkit fills the need for environmental health education and information. The Greater Boston (GBPSR) and San Francisco Bay Area chapters of Physicians for Social Responsibility, in partnership with the Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit at the University of California, San Francisco, and a team of pediatricians from around the country, developed the Pediatric Environmental Health Toolkit. 

Order a Hard Copy of the Toolkit

Individuals may order hard copies of the Toolkit.  

Get CE Credit for Free Online Toolkit Course

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry offers a free, online course providing continuing education credits for health professionals interested in pediatric environmental health. To take the course, click here.

Downloading Toolkit Materials

Click on the links below to download the Toolkit materials. But before doing so, please read the Users Guide first, which explains the Toolkit materials and proposed use in greater detail. Click here to download Adobe Reader.

For Providers:

  • Provider Desk Reference Card -- A two-sided, laminated reference card that allows providers to quickly reference environmental toxicants, their health effects, routes of exposure, and exposure prevention strategies. It was adapted from the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) Pediatric Environmental Health handbook. This document can be printed on an office printer using the landscape format and “reduced to fit page” setting. It will print in 6, 8.5 x 11 pages.  To print one 12 x 18 page click here.
  • Anticipatory Guidance Pocket Card -- A two-sided, laminated reference card that fits in a large pocket for handy use during a well child visit. The topics on the pocket card are both developmentally appropriate and take advantage of “teachable moments.”  For example, at a newborn visit, the provider will naturally discuss infant feeding. Exchanging mercury thermometers for safer digital ones is another easy step that a provider can mention at an early visit. These flexible guidance points provide clinicians with an age appropriate menu of choices to discuss during routine visits.
  • Posters -- Two colorful posters in English and Spanish for clinic and exam rooms that highlight environmental health issues in a child’s indoor and outdoor environments.
  • Key Concepts in Pediatric Environmental Health -- This background document provides information on a number of topics, including children’s unique vulnerabilities to toxic substances, high risk communities, the “built environment,” right-to-know issues and many more. This document is set up to be printed out on a home computer on standard 8.5 x 11 paper in 4 pages. To print 11 x 17 click here.

Toolkit Training Program for Health Care Providers

The Pediatric Environmental Health Toolkit Training uses various case examples to highlight the relationship between environmental exposures and children’s health, and clinical use of the Toolkit. Upon completion the learner will be able to:

  • Identify routes of exposure to common toxic chemicals and substances including mercury, lead, arsenic, solvents, pesticides, and persistent organic compounds such as PCBs;
  • Recognize links between these toxic chemicals and health effects;
  • Provide anticipatory guidance keyed to well-child visits;
  • Enhance patient communications on environmental health issues;
  • Discuss the unique vulnerabilities of children, the “built” and “food” environments, and other important issues;
  • Use the Pediatric Toolkit in the busy practice setting.

View or download the Powerpoint Training Program document

For Patients and Their Families:

  • “Rx for Prevention” Prescription Slips -- (English and Spanish) Each “Rx” slip, keyed to four developmental stages, contains two to four high priority “tips on prevention” for parents, such as how to avoid mercury in fish or protect children from solvents and pesticides. The provider can give the slips to a family as if prescribing a medication. The Rx pads are set to print 4 to a page and then can be cut down to size.
  • Magnets with “Tips for Prevention” -- (English and Spanish) These  downloadable magnet files, with six brief prevention tips have been designed so that they can be printed on label paper and used as stickers. (Patients can use the magnets to post the “Rx for Prevention” slips on their refrigerators.)

 Further Resources

For questions please contact Lucia Sayre, luciasayre@sbcglobal.net or 510 559 8777