Environmental Health and Professional Nursing Practice
According to Standard 17 of the Standards of Professional Nursing Practice found in Nursing:
Scope and Standards of Practice, 3rd Edition, “The registered nurse practices in an
environmentally safe and healthy manner.”
ANA’S PRINCIPLES OF ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH FOR NURSING PRACTICE
1. Knowledge of environmental health concepts is essential to nursing practice.
2. The Precautionary Principle guides nurses in their practice to use products and
practices that do not harm human health or the environment and to take preventive
action in the face of uncertainty.
3. Nurses have a right to work in an environment that is safe and healthy.
4. Healthy environments are sustained through multidisciplinary collaboration.
5. Choices of materials, products, technology, and practices in the environment that
impact nursing practice are based on the best evidence available.
6. Approaches to promoting a healthy environment respect the diverse values, beliefs,
cultures, and circumstances of patients and their families.
7. Nurses participate in assessing the quality of the environment in which they practice
8. Nurses, other health care workers, patients, and communities have the right to know
relevant and timely information about the potentially harmful products, chemicals,
pollutants, and hazards to which they are exposed.
9. Nurses participate in research of best practices that promote a safe and healthy
10. Nurses must be supported in advocating for and implementing environmental health
principles in nursing practice.
Refer back to our ppts about EH and list some indoor and outdoor pollutants/environmental
List a few of the most toxic household chemicals that we tend to use frequently.
Use the following link to look up the ingredients of a product you use regularly:
What is “body burden?”
Answer the following questions while we view “Contaminated
• What were some key results of the “Dust Study” done in Massachusetts (n=70)?
• How are we exposed to chemical toxins?
• How to we test for chemical exposure (biomonitoring)?
• Who’s at highest risk for exposure/accumulation of toxins?
• Is exposure lethal? Can it be cured or treated?
• What are some diseases/illnesses that have been linked to chemical toxins?
• What is the impact of significant exposure to chemical toxins in cord blood, breast
milk, and the environment on embryos, fetuses, newborns?
Amy conducted an exposure history on her 52 y/o father who has worked as a foreman in a shoe
factory for 25 years. She found that he has two significant exposure risks: 1. To benzene, and 2.
What is Benzene?
What’s the “OSHA standard” for benzene in the workplace?
Benzene can lead to what category of diseases?
How could Amy’s father limit his exposure to benzene?
What are the long-term effects of exposure to loud noise?
PH Levels of Prevention
Dirty 12 and Clean 15 (2min)
Consumer Info Sites for referrals:
• Cosmetics database.org
o CDC National Center for Environmental Health https://www.cdc.gov/nceh/
Get politically active!
THE BIDEN PLAN FOR A CLEAN ENERGY
REVOLUTION AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE
• I PREPARE (CDC) https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/216507990505300108
• Exposure History Form (CDC Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry)
THE BIDEN PLAN FOR A CLEAN ENERGY REVOLUTION AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE