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Toxicol Ind Health. 2003 Jul;19(2-6):115-24.

The impact of toxicology on public health policy and service: an update.

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Division of Toxicology, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.


The Division of Toxicology, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) has a Congressional mandate to develop toxicological profiles for chemicals of greatest concern at hazardous waste sites. These chemical profiles provide a comprehensive evaluation and interpretation of the health effects, chemical and physical properties, production and use, potential for human exposure, analytical methodologies, and regulations and advisories for those chemicals. In addition, these profiles identify critical gaps in the knowledge base for these chemicals and identify levels of significant human exposure. Health assessors and other public health officials use this information to make critical decisions regarding the potential for adverse health effects at hazardous waste sites and other chemical-release events through such activities as public health assessments, chemical-specific and health-specific consultations, health-guidance-value derivations, database development, and emergency response actions. In a previous paper, we provided an overview of six specific public-health activities conducted by the ATSDR Division of Toxicology and examined how these activities have made unique impacts on public health policy and service. In this paper, we follow up on two of these, ATSDR polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) activities and ATSDR mercury activities, and examine their long-term, continually evolving impacts on public health policy and service.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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