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Dampness and mold have long been observed in buildings and associated with various health effects. There is much controversy about what health effects can be attributed to dampness and mold, and how to determine if there are unhealthy levels of dampness of mold in buildings. This presentation will review the current scientific knowledge about relationships between dampness and dampness-related agents and health, based primarily on the epidemiologic literature and recent reviews that the author has participated in.
The implications for public health policy of our current knowledge on dampness, mold, and health will also be discussed.
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies or views of Public Health Ontario, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by Public Health Ontario.
Presenter: Dr. Mark Mendell
Dr. Mark Mendell is an air pollution research specialist in the Indoor Air Quality Section of the California Department of Public Health. He was formerly a staff scientist/epidemiologist in the Indoor Environment Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and at the CDC/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health where, for six years, he was the head of the National Occupational Research Agenda Team for Indoor Environments.
Dr. Mendell is on the editorial board of the journal Indoor Air and a member of the International Academy of Indoor Air Sciences. He holds a bachelor of arts from Cornell University, a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from the University of Oregon, and a master of public health and a doctorate (PhD) in epidemiology from the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. Dr. Mendell has worked for over 25 years in the field of environmental epidemiology, focused on health effects related to indoor environments in buildings.
His work includes both field research and critical reviews on environment/health relationships in offices, schools, and homes. Dr. Mendell’s research interests include health risks such as asthma and allergies, associated with indoor exposures like moisture, microbial growth, and chemical emissions, and factors such as ventilation rate and building design; effects of indoor environments on performance; and creation of science-based public policies to support healthy indoor environments.
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