[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 30 (Wednesday, February 13, 2008)]
[Pages 8320-8321]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-2743]



Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

[Docket Number NIOSH-126]

Notice of Public Meeting and Availability for Public Comment

AGENCY: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health 
(NIOSH) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
SUMMARY: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health 
(NIOSH) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 
announces the following meeting and request for public comment on the 
Emergency Preparedness and Response Research Portfolio. The document 
and instructions for submitting comments can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/review/public/126/. Comments may be given orally at 
the following meeting, as well as provided to the NIOSH Docket Office.
    Public Meeting Time and Date: 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., March 25, 2008.
    Place: Hyatt Regency Crystal City, 2799 Jefferson Davis HWY, 
Arlington, Virginia 22202.
    Purpose of Meeting: NIOSH has developed strategic goals to address 
important issues surrounding the health and safety of emergency 
responders. The full list of goals can be accessed through the NIOSH 
Web site at: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/programs/epr/goals.html.
    The eight overarching goals are:
    1. SAFETY CLIMATE: Improve the organization of emergency response 
work to reduce exposure to risks and to enhance the health and safety 
of emergency responders.
    2. PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPE): Improve PPE assortment, 
proper selection and wear, and decontamination.
engineering controls, technology, and tools to minimize responders' 
exposures to hazards associated with chemical, biological, radiation or 
nuclear (CBRN), toxic industrial compound (TIC), and other hazardous 
methods to evaluate the spatial and temporal distribution of gases, 
vapors, and aerosols, as well as liquids or particulates associated 
with surface contamination.
    5. SUBGROUP-SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: Improve subgroup awareness, 
develop targeted messages, and expand subgroup-preferred channels.
    6. SURVEILLANCE: Develop surveillance reporting systems to improve 
emergency responder safety and health through the systematic 
collection, analysis, and interpretation of exposure, hazard, injury, 
and illness data.
    7. ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY: Improve the understanding of 
environmental microbiology of threat agents, including environmental 
factors that influence the introduction, spread, and control of these 
Improve the identification and characterization of terror agents to 
reduce exposures to response and remediation workers.
    Stakeholders are encouraged to review the strategic goals on the 
NIOSH Web site (http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/programs/epr/goals.html ) in 
order to prepare their comments/feedback around the following topics to 
be discussed. Written responses can be submitted in person at the 
meeting or by emailing [email protected]. Please reference Docket 
Number NIOSH-126 in your response.
     Give your opinion about the top three goals needed to 
improve the safety and health of emergency responders.
     Discuss why these are the top goals. Address any obstacles 
in achieving these goals.
     Talk about how research can help the nation address the 
top goals that you have identified. Provide a couple of examples of 
research ideas for each of your top goals identified.
     Discuss opportunities you see on the horizon that could 
lead to improvements in emergency responder safety and health.
    Please include as much information as might be useful for 
understanding the safety or health research priority you identify. Such 
information could include characterization of the frequency and 
severity with which the injury, illness, or hazardous exposure is 
occurring and of the factors you believe might be causing the health or 
safety issue. Input is also requested on the types of research that you 
believe might make a difference and which partners (e.g., specific 
industry associations, labor organizations, research organizations, 
government agencies) should be involved in informing research efforts 
and solutions.
    Status: The public meeting is open to everyone, including all 
workers, professional societies, organized labor, employers, 
researchers, health professionals, government officials, and elected 
officials. The public meeting

[[Page 8321]]

will address priorities for emergency preparedness and response 
research during both morning and afternoon public comment periods. 
Participants are invited to speak for 5 minutes about the discussion 
topics listed above. Participants may register to speak during either 
the morning or afternoon session, though they are encouraged to stay 
for both sessions.
    Broad participation is desired. All participants are requested to 
register for the free meeting by e-mailing [email protected] or on 
site the day of the meeting, space permitting. Participants wishing to 
speak are encouraged to register early. This meeting is open to the 
public, limited only by the space available.
    Background: The mission of the NIOSH Emergency Preparedness and 
Response (EPR) Program portfolio is to advance research and 
collaborations to protect the health and safety of emergency response 
providers and recovery workers by preventing diseases, injuries, and 
fatalities in anticipation of and during responses to natural and man-
made disasters and novel emergent events.
    The EPR Program research portfolio cuts across the eight sectors 
that are the focus of the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA). 
NORA is a partnership program to stimulate innovative research and 
improved workplace practices. Unveiled in 1996, NORA has become a 
research framework for NIOSH and the nation. Diverse parties 
collaborate to identify the most critical issues in workplace safety 
and health.
    Public Comment Period: Those unable to attend the public meeting 
may submit input to the NIOSH Docket Office within 60 days after the 
date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. Reference 
NIOSH Docket 126 in comments.
    Contact Person for Technical Information: Dr. Renee Funk, EPR 
Portfolio Coordinator at (404) 498-2499 or e-mail [email protected].
    Comments may be e-mailed to [email protected] or sent via postal 
mail to: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NIOSH Docket-126, 
Robert A. Taft Laboratories (C-34), 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, 
OH 45226.
    Additional Information: A limited number of rooms have been 
reserved in the same hotel as the meeting for participants who require 
lodging for the night of March 24th. Please contact the hotel 
reservations desk for rooms under ``NIOSH Town Hall Meeting'' by the 
March 3rd deadline at (703) 418-7233.
    Reference: More information about NIOSH/EPR can be found on the 
NIOSH Web page at: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/programs/epr/.

    Dated: February 5, 2008.
James D. Seligman,
Chief Information Officer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
[FR Doc. E8-2743 Filed 2-12-08; 8:45 am]