Okay, we’re going to get started.
Welcome everyone and thank you for joining today’s webinar from the
National Pesticide Information Center. Which is formed through a
cooperative agreement between the US Environmental Protection
Agency and Oregon State University. My name is Alicia Leytem, and I am a
senior pesticide specialist here at NPIC. I’m also the webinar facilitator so you’ll see
my name on those emails now and in the future. Before we get started I’d like to
cover a couple of quick logistics. So I’d like to invite you to
please use the Q&A box to ask any questions
during the webinar. It should already be addressed to all
and you can keep it that way that’s great. For any questions that aren’t answered
during or immediately following the webinar, please feel free to use the contact information
that we’ll provide at the end of the webinar. We are recording today’s webinar, so
a recorded version of today’s webinar will be available soon on the NPIC
website and our YouTube channel, likely within the next two weeks. But you will
receive an email once that video is posted. Today’s speaker will be Amy Hallman,
NPIC project coordinator, and a former NPIC pesticide specialist. Amy has several years of experience
working within the NPIC database. But we also have the database developer
Sean Ross in attendance, so that he’ll be here available for questions after the
presentation if anything comes up. I’m really looking forward
to the webinar today, and thank you all for joining
and you can take it over Amy. Thanks. So I wanted to take a minute
to thank those of you that filled out the pre-webinar questionnaire
over the last several weeks. That information was really helpful in
developing, specifically what information we gave, and it helped me to understand
that our audience is very diversified. We have several people that maybe
haven’t even heard of NPIC services, or are not familiar with our mission,
so I’m going to be taking time to go over a little bit about what is NPIC in addition
to digging into how NPIC collects the data. So first I will be talking
about who NPIC is, and then as I dig into the
data that NPIC collects, I’ll talk about, how is it collected?
What data is collected for all inquiries? And then what additional data do we
collect and categorize for incidents? For those incidents because
that’s additional information, I’ll talk a little bit about our classification
schemes, how we categorize that, and then last but not least we’re
going to get into what the data request might look like, and how to go about
requesting that data from NPIC. So who is NPIC? NPIC is an organization
that’s a cooperative agreement formed between the United States EPA
and Oregon State University. And we provide objective,
science-based pesticide information, with the main purpose or goal of
promoting informed decision-making. So the main way that we do this is by
operating a toll-free hotline for individuals to call into, to ask questions, and to get
really high-quality detailed information. So our toll-free hotline is available from
8 a.m to noon pacific time Monday to Friday. But then we also have a very
extensive website where individuals can find lots of good
scientific information that’s easy to understand when
we’re not available via phone. And of course, we do take emails and
we hear a lot from voicemails as well. Per year we take about
10,000 to 11,000 inquiries, and about 90% of the individuals
that contact NPIC are general public. That’s skewing it a lot towards
the general public which means that most of the questions we receive are
about pesticide use in and around the home. Now of those 10,000 to
11,000 inquiries per year, on average about 15 percent of those
calls are related to pesticide incidents. And we’ll talk more about how
NPIC classifies an incident, but it’s typically some type of exposure,
maybe it’s a spill, or a misapplication. This is April, one of our
pesticide specialists, and the types of information you can
expect when having a conversation is that the pesticide specialist
is going to be able to translate technical scientific jargon into language
that’s much easier to understand. We know that not everybody
has a background in science, and so that’s one of our main
goals is to really facilitate that communication without
using technical jargon. We also understand that sometimes
NPIC is not the only or best resource, in an individual’s overarching
conversation about their situation, so we have an extensive database
that we have maintained with state and other local contacts
so that individuals can find that information when we’re not available
or we’re able to explain these resources to them over the phone and
point them in the right direction. NPIC also has multilingual
specialists on staff, and we have a contract with LanguageLine
Solutions so that we can deliver pesticide information in real time
in over 240 languages. However, I think that our strongest
suit is our ability to evaluate pesticide risk, and to communicate what
that risk is to the individual with questions. So I’ll talk a little bit about that, but mostly I
think that, we don’t have time today to talk about how NPIC approaches that
strategy of communicating risk. Instead let’s talk a little bit more
about some of our services. NPIC could help if an individual
had questions about two products, and they wanted to
compare product toxicity. Maybe they wanted to discuss
the potential health effects if there were some type of exposure. Maybe they wanted to evaluate pesticide
persistence in the environment, or wanted to talk about
breakdown in water, in soil, or in air. NPIC can help discuss what those
risks to ground water, wildlife, bees, or pets, and of course
family, what those risks could be, we can help evaluate and discuss them. We may be able to provide
general label guidance. And I want to qualify this a little bit
because if an individual isn’t sure how to find the pre-harvest interval on
their product for applying it to a garden. That’s general label guidance where
we can talk with them over the phone, point them in the general direction
on their language where to look for that pre-harvest interval,
explain what it means, but this is not providing specific
mixing or application instructions. We really do need that person
to have the product on hand, and to have the label available before
they’re going to be applying it. Some individuals contact NPIC to
report pesticide spills or exposures. And in those instances if time is not
of the essence if it’s not an emergency, we’ll talk about their options,
and also if there may be a more appropriate contact for them
at their state or other level. Sometimes we hear about
concerns for upcoming treatments. Maybe it’s another non-urgent
situation, we may be discussing Integrated Pest Management
for their specific pest, but these are all scientific topics that
NPIC are very comfortable discussing. Of course it’s important to talk
about the limitations as well. NPIC is not going to provide
product recommendations. So it may be that they have a couple
products they want to compare, and we’re happy to do that,
unfortunately we’re not going to make any specific recommendation
for their situation or for their pest. NPIC specialists do not have medical training. So we’re not going to provide medical
advice or any type of diagnosis. Now it’s confusing to some
individuals because they may think that because we’re giving health
information about what’s listed in the literature, that that
can equate to a diagnosis, but we’re very clear about our boundaries
and we’re just providing scientific information. Like I mentioned before,
NPIC will not provide specific mixing or application instructions.
If an individual doesn’t have the label or is having a hard time
understanding their label, that may be better for the manufacturer,
or if it’s a professional, it may be better to talk
to the State Lead Agency. This is a surprising one, but I have had
to answer this question many times, NPIC cannot provide legal advice, nor does NPIC have any regulatory
or enforcement authority. And what this means is that NPIC is also
not going to be sending any type of automatic reporting to
regulatory authorities. By policy NPIC does not collect
personally identifiable information. What that means is that it’s
anonymous information we collect. And in a situation where somebody
wants to talk to the regulatory authority, or has information about
a concerning application, we are more than happy to
discuss the situation with them, what NPIC is and isn’t, and who
the proper authority would be oftentimes giving them that contact
information for their State Lead Agency. So we do very careful work to explain
the role of the State Lead Agencies, and other offices, and then we
give them the contact information so that it’s a first person contact
between them and the agency. So just very briefly looking at that one most
popular question we get from our callers, is it safe? This slide is meant to summarize our
conversation around safety versus risk. So if we were to refer to a situation as safe, the answer is yes or no it is or it
isn’t safe. And if we imply safety, then there may be that idea that
no precautions are necessary. And that safe would be safe for everyone. Now while this is very easy to
explain it isn’t very accurate, and it doesn’t help prevent
possible exposures a lot of time. So instead what we talk about is risk. There’s a sliding scale where a situation
involving pesticides can be more or less risky based on behavior, based on
product, based on exposure potential. But there are always some precautions that
you can implement to help reduce those risks. Also, we understand that risk can
be higher for certain individuals. They may be having predisposed
conditions that make that risk higher for them. Unfortunately, this is a lot harder to explain. So if you take one thing away from this
conversation about safety versus risk, it’s this: If you give the impression of safety, it can
potentially lead to careless behaviors, or a lack of vigilance, and
that in turn can increase risk. Now because of this, it means that
every time we have a conversation about using pesticides, or being
present around pesticides, we’re always going to
provide actionable concepts and an individual can take
on themselves some of these precautions that they can help
reduce their risk in that situation. NPIC’s website, I mentioned this
earlier, is one of our best resources, especially if we’re not
available via phone right away. Our website is over 700
pages in English and Spanish, it has lots of great
educational publications, lots of topics are covered about
pesticides and various topics, but I think one of my favorite
parts is our local contacts, this map, in the lower right hand corner,
when you’re on the webpage that map is pretty obvious. And it allows individuals
to find contacts for various agencies in their state, and maybe even a more
local level maybe on a county level. It’s got thousands and thousands
of contacts for the United States. And so I would emphasize
this as one of our resources, but also encourage you if you’re
listening today to check out the tool, and if your organization is represented, and
there is contact information provided there, please check and make sure
it’s up-to-date and correct. Because we are trying to keep
that as up-to-date as possible, and if there’s ever a mistake, we would be
happy to make that update to make it correct. So on our website, like I mentioned,
we have these educational materials, and they can vary from videos,
to infographics, to fact sheets, but what we’re doing is we’re taking
the information we’re hearing, from our callers and from our inquires,
and we’re leveraging that to create new publications based on what they
need or based on what they’re saying. So just as an example here
are a few of our fact sheets. We have I think over 40
active ingredient fact sheets, plus we have topic fact sheets. And these again are written for the
general public they’re written in a non-technical manner so
that even someone without a scientific background has
an easy time reading them. I would encourage you if you deal
with specific active ingredients in your line of work, and this is something
I talked to pesticide applicators about, if you’d like you can have
these either saved in PDF, or print them out, and have them
ready to hand out when needed. Or if you have a public
event coming up as well. Okay, so now that we’ve
talked about who NPIC is, let’s talk a little bit about
the data that we collect. For every call, voicemail,
and email, an NPIC specialist will document the essential
elements of that conversation. Which really is the who, what,
where, when, and how of the situation. I have to place a caveat on the who, because we don’t collect
personally identifiable information, we don’t collect names, or phone numbers. What this means is that we’re collecting
relationships. We’re collecting ages. So if a mother calls in and has information
about her daughter, or her stepmother, that information is reflected in the data that
we collect. But it’s not personally identifiable. So this is self-reported data, and
it’s important to emphasize that. None of the information
that we are collecting has been verified by any type
of independent investigation. We don’t make claims about its accuracy
other than the fact that we have tried our hardest to accurately reflect the
information that was provided to us. So if an individual reports something
to us, we like to act as a pane of glass and reflect it as closely as
possible to their report. We’re categorizing all of these
essential elements of the conversation into a custom database
which I’ll refer to as the PID, but it stands for Pesticide Inquiry Database. The process looks a little
bit like this. We have a caller, who may speak to an NPIC specialist,
the NPIC specialist will collect essential elements of that conversation
on a log, and then they will enter that data into the
Pesticide Inquiry Database. And that’s just a picture of what the interface
looks like in the lower right hand corner there. So there’s three main types of
inquiries that NPIC receives, one of them is informational, this
may be general information about an upcoming treatment, maybe they haven’t
even started their pest control policy, or they haven’t started anything
yet, but they’re wanting to know more information about
pesticides, maybe they’re interested in learning about washing
pesticide residues from produce. And this will all be informational. Another main type would
be a pesticide incident. These are inquiries or reports where there’s been
an exposure, a spill, or some type of misapplication. And the least common usually
about 2% or less of all of our inquiries, these are other inquiries and
they’re not related to pesticides. Sometimes they can be a little bit
more than just a wrong number, sometimes individuals aren’t really
sure about what they’re asking us, and we become a quote-unquote
ask a scientist hotline, but we do our best to get them
pointed in the right direction. Now the information that’s collected,
it differs depending on if it’s an informational inquiry, or
if it’s an incident inquiry. We do a better job of collecting more information
and requiring more information for incidents. And over time the database
has continually improved. What that means is that what
we’re discussing today, we’re focusing on that data that
we collect today as opposed to some of the minor changes that
may have occurred over time. So for every inquiry, every time someone
contacts NPIC, we aim to collect their location based on their
zip code or state, and that is as specific information as we’re
going to collect for their location. Maybe we’ll want to know the type of
inquirer, that means is it general public? Is it government or medical
professional of some type? What kind of questions did they ask? Were
they asking about health risk? Regulation? Maybe they had questions
about pesticide applications. What product information was
relevant to that conversation? Could we collect an EPA
registration number? Could we collect a product
name, or at the very least maybe active ingredients
were specifically discussed? And what actions did NPIC
perform, did we provide a discussion of ways to
minimize exposure or IPM? Did we provide a referral maybe
we talked about what referral or which appropriate agencies would be useful
in their situation based on their question. And then it’s also important for us to
collect how that person found NPIC. This comes up a lot because
we’re seeing more and more that individuals are finding,
even our phone number, they’re finding it based on websites, online.
And we ask that question to them. So this helps us know the usefulness and
where we can focus our efforts for our website. I’m going to actually talk about some
NPIC data over the next few slides. And this is all data from
NPIC 2017 annual report. The dates aren’t exactly calendar year for
2017, but I’ll refer to it of and on as 2017. So this is some data that we
collected about the type of enquirer or the profession of the
person who contacted NPIC. Vast majority of the individuals that
contacted us were general public in 2017. So that was about 90%. But this is
important for identifying our audiences. We noticed just anecdotally
talking around the office, we noticed we were getting
more and more calls from professional beekeepers, from apiaries,
and so in 2017 we decided to add that as a type of inquirer as something
that we could track over time. And all of this data is available in our 2017 annual
report that is available on the NPIC website today. So if you think that I’m going too
quickly over some of the data, you’re always welcome to
go visit that annual report. Here’s an example of our type of question
that someone may ask when calling NPIC. These are guidelines that help keep
specialist coding consistent across everyone. But also our top three questions
are usually these same three: health, pest control, or pesticide
application questions of some type. And you can have more
than one question per call. So if you’re looking at the data
and you’re getting we have double or triple the numbers from our
actual inquiries for that year, that’s why. You can have more than one
type of question per call. This is just an example of a few of the
actions that NPIC may code after a conversation. We may have sent outreach materials, we may
have given a referral to an appropriate organization, we may have discussed risk reduction
actions, and that can include talking about integrated pest management
or discussing ways to minimize exposure. And so this is a list of the organizations
that we may provide as references during our call we may provide
contact information so that the caller can follow up with
some of these organizations. So next let’s talk a little bit
more about pesticide incidents. And I think that incidents are much more popular
with individuals that request data from NPIC. You can request informational data,
but incident data is much more popular. Let’s define an NPIC incident. This is an inquiry that involves
some type of plausible exposure to a known or highly suspected
pesticide. And that includes an unintended exposure to humans or animals. That can be something where it
accidentally spills on a person, or it sprays onto a dog by accident
they’re not meaning to be exposed to it. An intended exposure with an adverse
effect and this seems like a strange one because why would we intentionally
be exposed to pesticides, but there are pesticides like insect
repellents where we do intentionally expose ourselves. So the adverse effect would
be the unusual part of that circumstance. There may be a spill, or a misapplication. And for misapplications, this
is a very specific definition. We often require an EPA registration
number in order to compare The label with the description
of how the product was used. There are a couple exceptions so for
example misapplications with mothballs We don’t need the EPA
registration number because mothballs need to be used
in a closed airtight container. So instead what we’re doing is we’re
basically getting a good description of how the product was used.
And then that helps us understand that it doesn’t fit any uses for mothballs. Another example might be if
an individual told us that they applied the product at two times the label
rate. That doesn’t necessarily require the EPA registration number because
we’re reflecting the information that they’ve given to us as clearly
and accurately as possible. So in 2017, I mentioned that that number
it hovers around 15% but in 2017, our actual data showed that we had
16% incidents of all of our inquiries So here’s the additional information
that we aim to collect for incidents. We aim to collect the type of incident
you can think of these as exposures, misapplications, spills, drifts, there
are some more rare types of incidents, like fire or industrial accidents,
but like I said, they’re very rare. We also aim to collect the entity or the type
of entity that was exposed to the pesticide. This could be a human, this could be an animal,
this could also be an environmental entity like plants, trees, a house, a structure,
or a building of some kind. And then we aim to collect
the location of the incident. And I’ll talk about that in just a second So if time is not of the essence, we want to collect
a timeline describing the exposure duration, the onset of symptoms, and the symptom
resolution if time is not of the essence. We understand that sometimes it’s an emergency, and our first priority is always
to stop the ongoing exposure. We will also aim to collect the person or animals
age, their symptoms and their gender, and then for animals we aim to collect
the species, breed, and weight as well. So here’s a breakdown of those
entities that I was talking about. In 2018, half of the entities that we
heard about exposed to pesticides were humans. And that can include
women, men, or groups of people exposed to the same thing at the same time,
in the same way, with the same symptoms. For animals, we had mostly
single animal exposures in 2017, but we did have a large amount of
animal groups exposed at the same time and a small amount of wildlife. For the environmental entity, that’s
about a third of our incidents, that’s referring to the built environment,
plants, gardens, a misapplication to a garden that would be
considered the entity there. And you can see the list on the left
that shows the entities that we classify. Other is very rarely used, we
recognize that sometimes not all entities can fit into
our perfect categories. So for incident location I mentioned that this
is helpful for us to have on hand because if you look at the very top result,
overwhelmingly, most of the pesticide incidents reported to us in 2017, 90%
of them occurred in the home or yard. And on the one hand that
makes a lot of sense because most of the individuals we’re
hearing from are general public, and so most of the time they’re
spending in their home or yard. But it’s helpful because if you’re in a state
or an area where you’re trying to get out informational leaflets or trying to establish
an educational program for general public, you can dig into this data and you can find out
more about how are the exposures happening? Are these mostly spills are these mostly
miss applications? What’s going on? And this location here is
telling you that that’s where most of the incidents are
occurring from our data set. So what we also enter into the database is
a narrative. And this isn’t meant for you to specifically read necessarily. But it’s to show
you that for even a complicated incident, we strive to keep short concise
and complete incident narratives. So this is entered into the database with
the understanding that the information provided here in the narrative is the same
information that’s provided in the coding. And the idea being that a stranger could
read this and would get the same coding if they had been trained on NPIC’s coding
scheme. So you don’t necessarily have to be available to hear that caller to
understand the coding as long as you have that narrative that
explains each and every piece of it. It’s got product information, should have
location information, onset duration, and resolution symptoms,
all of that should be there. So how do we characterize
the reported symptoms? Specialists will compare the symptoms
and signs that they get from a caller, to what’s listed in case reports
books or other parts of literature. And what they’re focusing on are the
active ingredients involved in this incident. So what we have created is
something called a certainty index, this is our estimate as to the
likelihood that the signs or symptoms someone is reporting, whether or not
these are consistent, or inconsistent, with published materials. So we
do use another code definite, and that’s when something is consistent
and also we have laboratory results, blood serum level some kind of
measurement to back that up, but as you can see, it’s not a very common
code. We usually have one to two a year, and in 2017 we had zero. So it’s typically
consistent or inconsistent for animals and humans. And there are a lot of cases where
we can’t classify a certainty index, when there’s an exposure but no symptoms, when there’s no active ingredient
that could be identified, and if we’re not sure whether or not
there are symptoms for that individual. We also do assign a severity index
based on how severe the symptoms are, and this is independent
of the certainty index. We have asymptomatic, minor, moderate,
major, and death for the severity index, and it’s based on a couple sets of
criteria for humans and animals. So for humans this was derived from
the National Poison Data System used by the Poison Control Centers as well as
the Incident Data System used by the US EPA. For animals, the criteria for our coding
scheme were adapted from the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center, and
the EPA’s Incident Data System. So there are similar mechanisms out
there for coding the severity index, but this is how NPIC has
come up with their own. And then how do we ensure data quality? So the PID facilitator is a specialist
here at NPIC that focuses on the data. Keeping the data consistent over
time and between specialists. So they review the data and they make corrections
as needed to maintain that consistent approach. We also consult with Dr. Fred Berman,
on our Executive Committee, he provides input on incidents. Now there’s a lot of coding support
for specialists because even after initial training there needs
to be a lot of ongoing help, and so what we do is we keep
references available to all specialists, where they can solve their coding questions
based on past exercises or guidance, the PID facilitator may provide one-on-one
coding guidance if there’s questions or if there’s a pattern emerging, and we also
monitor trends during the QA QC process. And that helps us to identify if multiple
people are having a similar trends, maybe we need to do a group
activity during our staff meetings and create some kind of
specific training activity. So requesting NPIC data. What are some of the things
that NPIC data can tell us? It can tell us what is being
reported by the general public, it can also tell us some of the
circumstances leading to those exposures, and maybe even how serious the
incidents are that are being reported. How many incidents are being reported
and is that rate changing over time, maybe even for a specific active ingredient? Is there a changing trend for
that active ingredient or product? And what kind of topics are
people asking questions about? So for example over time we’ve been
tracking how people are asking questions about repellent products, that they’re
specifically mentioning for use against mosquitoes that may carry the
Zika virus. And so we noticed that trend in 2015-2016 going down in 2017. But these are the kinds of things
that will notice anecdotally, and then we can dig into the data a little
deeper and we can see trends over time. Just an example of a data request
in the last couple years here, the New York State Integrated
Pest Management Program, and along with Cornell Cooperative Extension, they created these active ingredient
profiles for those active ingredients eligible for minimum risk pesticide use.
So minimum risk pesticides have a very specific set of requirements
that they must meet, and then they don’t require federal
registration by the EPA as a pesticide. So what these profiles are doing is
they’re looking at health information, reports of incidents and NPIC data was just
one small piece of these overall profiles. but they requested 20 years of NPIC
incidents for each and every one of these eligible active ingredients, and they
were able to kind of talk generally about the volume of incidents related
to poisonings and then dig into the written narratives that characterize
how these exposures are occurring or what might be a common type of exposure. Other types of past reports
we’ve had dozens of reports requested from EPA personnel
and health effects Division the Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention
Division, as well as others at EPA some of these might look like maybe they
want to know about all incidents that have a severity index of something above
minor, so moderate, major, or death, and maybe those would all
be related to active ingredients. And they’re going to request
it over the last five years. They may also be interested in
incidents related to a specific product, maybe over 10 years, or
maybe just in the last year, and they can provide that EPA
registration number for us to search for. Now states, we’ve had many requests,
dozens of requests from space as well, maybe they’re just interested in all reported
incidents in their state for a specific time. Maybe they’re looking for all animal incidents
related to food treatments across all states. Maybe they’re looking for all incidents
related to active ingredient poisonings. And these are examples of actual requests
that we’ve gotten from states for NPIC data. So what does it look like
when we fulfill a data request? Any information that we collect
about that report will be provided. But by policy none of that information will
include personally identifiable information and that’s because NPIC
doesn’t collect that PII. The data can be provided
in one way, by PDF, which essentially looks like one case
narrative per page with some of that the related data included, but it can be
more time-consuming to filter through the data that way if you’re
looking at a large set. Alternatively, we can also
provide data in a dot CSV format which could be viewed or sorted in Microsoft
Excel, or imported into Microsoft Access. So you can think of this data in a couple
of different ways one of the ways it could be maybe you’re looking for
counts. Maybe you want to know how many people were exposed to a
specific active ingredient and reported ocular symptoms over these years. Or something like that. So you’re
looking more statistical information, and all of that data is provided to you
if you wanted to have both versions you could have a PDF version
and a spreadsheet version. Also in the past we’ve found it easiest to create
a custom format. So if that’s something that’s going to be helpful to you, we’re definitely
interested in helping you get the data you need. So let’s talk more about who
can request data from NPIC? If you are EPA personnel which could
include risk assessors, work groups, or administrators, or if you are state or
tribal agency, maybe another type of state agency like a Department of
Environmental Quality or Health Department, all of these offices can request
data from NPIC at no charge, and the report will be in your
hands within 10 business days. We understand that other individuals at a
group also would like to request data for either registrants or non government
organizations or the general public. The process for requesting NPIC data is
fee based and they’ll have to do the entire process through Oregon State
University’s Office of General Counsel. If they’re having trouble getting in contact, we’re
always happy to redirect you via the hotline. So we always encourage you that if you’re
not sure where to go if you’re not sure who to contact, just contact the hotline
and we’ll get you to the right place. So I have a little bit better more specific
contact information than just using the hotline as a backup if you are EPA
personnel you can contact our project officer, Ana Rivera-Lupiáñez,
and her contact information is there. I will end the presentation today
on this slide when I’m finished, so you don’t have to scribble
down contact information right now. If you’re with a State or Tribal
Agency, maybe you’re with a Department of Environmental
Quality, or a Health Department, you can contact myself project coordinator
Amy Hallman, or the director, Jeff Jenkins. So, let’s look at a summary of what
that data request process looks like. The first step is always contacting
NPIC. Either you can use specific contact information or if you’re
not sure, email or call our hotline. Oftentimes it’s helpful to discuss
your specific data needs, to have a conversation and
usually that means phone call, but if it’s really a simple request
it may not require a phone call. I would like to know at that time if you’re
interested in a PDF, or a spreadsheet, or both, what kind of statistical or detailed
narrative information are you looking for, and that report will be delivered
to you in 10 business days or fewer. Any follow up assistance we can
provide. Any additional data you need. These are all available upon request. And actually, we really encourage you to
follow up afterwards because it helps us understand how our data has
been useful and how you’re using it. So one of the questions we received
during the initial questionnaire prior to the webinar being developed was
about professionals entering information into a portal. One of our portals online
available for including incident information at any time day or night is the Veterinary
Pesticide Incident Reporting Portal or the VIRP. This is for use only by veterinarians and
their staff or professionals in animal medicine. The information submitted to this online portal
may be directly sent in its entirety to the US EPA. The data collected in this portal
are not for targeted enforcement. And it is a separate set of data from the
NPIC datasets I just was talking about. So there’s no data quality control. Like I said, it could be submitted in its
entirety as is without any vetting or QA QC. I think it’s an important tool to have
available for medical professionals, however, if the individual was able to call in
and talk to one of our pesticide specialists, the amount and type of data that
we’re able to collect over the phone, is going to be much richer, higher in detail,
and it’s just going to be higher quality overall So we usually encourage individuals
to contact us through the hotline. But remember, this is a separate data
set and it’s often a very small data set. Over the course of the year, it’s often
less than a couple dozen reports. Another online incident
reporting portal we have is the Ecological Pesticide Incident Reporting Portal. This is for reporting adverse effects
in the field to non target entities like wildlife, birds, fish,
plant, bees, soil, water, again, it may be sent in its entirety to the US
EPA and it’s not for targeted enforcement. It’s separate from NPIC data as
well, and there’s no quality control. So what’s important to mention about
these portals is that they don’t over go our normal QA process, and if any
personally identifiable information is included like in the eco portal,
that would be sent in its entirety. So we don’t have the ability
to withhold that information. One last time I’ll put up some
contact information this may be for, this is our general hotline, our general
email, or website, if you wanted to refer to NPIC or ask questions over the
hotline to one of our pesticide specialists. I encourage you to just
pick up the phone and call, we’re open Monday to Friday
8:00 to noon pacific time. And like I promised I’m going to end
the webinar today on our contact slide. So we have time now, and I say we
because I’m here with the developer of the Pesticide Inquiry
Database Sean Ross and we’re going to go over some questions
that have been asked during the webinar. Okay thanks so much Amy. I’m going to read some of the
questions that we received, and then we can kind of all answer
them as it seems appropriate. So the first question we got was
how does NPIC staff ensure collars understand the label when getting
inquiries about pesticide safety? That’s a good question,
I think it depends a lot on, why I mean Alicia, you
can help me answer this. It depends a lot on the person and
how they’re referring to the label. So if they’re asking questions that implies they
haven’t read anything about PPE requirements, it’s kind of a red flag for the
pesticide specialist to ask them if they have any questions about
what they’re seeing on the label. Yeah, and a lot of times too when we’re
speaking to a caller and they have a product they’re going to be applying, we’ll
kind of walk them through the label sections, so, because we have access to a federal
label not necessarily state edited labels. We’ll say okay can you find the section
that says precautionary statements? Or can you find the section that has
a list of the pre-harvest intervals? What do you see listed there? And then
we’ll kind of step through each portion of it, and help explain different segments of it
and how that relates to pesticide safety, the signal word or the precautionary
statements and how those things are decided upon as well so they understand
kind of the background of that information on the label has a whole regulatory
step it goes through to get there, and these are the things that they mean. And we generally ask how are you intending to use the product? How do you want to apply it and
that is where our conversation begins. And additionally you guys have a, constantly are asking people to try to
find a registration number for you the label and have that conversation and try to
get people to get that so they have an active ingredient and registration
number information. Absolutely. Yep. We’re always trying to get some
product information off the label, so, it would be a big red flag if we asked
for any product information off the label and they couldn’t give us anything I mean
it could also be a problem with literacy, but I think that there are several things
that could cue us into that conversation. Yeah, hopefully that I answered a question.
Feel free to ask again if we didn’t quite touch on it. The next question that we received was,
how are misleading or false claims handled, and how are they separated
from real calls to fake claim calls? Which is not something I think
we’ve ever really come up with. I mean we haven’t been able to identify
things that are false claims necessarily. And I think that that’s outside of our
wheelhouse because our main purpose is to reflect the data as clearly as possible,
understanding that it is self-reported data, and that it hasn’t been vetted
in any way shape or form. So, I think because we’re set aside
from any kind of enforcement that we may be providing the correct
information for the State Pesticide Agency for questions about enforcement
and then that might be their *Alicia* their jurisdictions. *Amy* Yeah but it’s not reflected
in our data. It’s a great question. I mean if somebody is calling with
kind of over-the-top reactions to things I mean that would come out in the
consistency, it would come out as being inconsistent to
what’s in the literature. But the report of exposure, we would not pass
judgment on true or false report of exposures. Right. Because we hear crazy things
and we want to document everything as a possibility. So we kind
of take people at their word. *Sean* Yeah and we have to.
*Alicia* And we have to. Yeah. How do you code the information if the
callers use a generic name for a product such as roundup, but they don’t provide
the EPA number or specific product name? That’s a really good question. For a long time, we were able to code
roundup with active ingredient glyphosate because all roundup products
had that active ingredient. More recently we understand that roundup
has safe for lawns products that are not with active ingredient glyphosate
but the same name of roundup. So if we know that a general name has
every product with at least that one same active ingredient we code that but if
it becomes known to us that there are multiple possible active ingredients,
we reflect that uncertainty in our data. And we will include the name,
without the active ingredient. Now let’s say the specialist has a conversation
because there’s only two possible active ingredients. We’ll code all three of those things separately
the name, active ingredient number one, and active ingredient number two because
we discussed both of those ingredients and so we want to reflect that in our
data as part of the topic of conversation. And the certainty index will reflect the
symptoms mapping to those as well. Exactly so if we have a case where there
are symptoms and we’re unable to identify the specific active ingredient then we have
an incident active ingredient unknown code. And so that it does not allow
us to assign up a certainty index. We can still assign severity if there
are symptoms, but if someone has no information about what the active
ingredient is, we reflect that uncertainty. And again, you guys are great at trying
to tease out those registration numbers if they have the label, so. And that’s
number one thing is trying to get that information from the
caller in the first place. Yeah, and oftentimes we’ll have calls with
people where we will go through the entire conversation we would normally have if they
had the full information about the product but say they’re at work and their products
at home, and we’ll just have them call back later and provide that additional
information then we can piece that together with our original incident
information so that we do have a more thorough report if possible. Yeah if we have someone calling back
we do our best to link up those reports so that it’s all contained in one place. The only other question that we have right
now is whether the slides will be available. That’s a good question I know that
the recording of the webinar will be available within two weeks. You’re very
welcome to contact me directly for those types of questions for requesting
slides and we can talk about it more. If you have any other questions, we’ll
wait another 30 seconds or so to give you guys a chance to type those in. Otherwise we are coming to the end. Yes, and I think we have a little over
ten minutes left before we hit the hour. So we’re going to stay on
and wait for those questions. Okay, we’ve got another question do you
prefer that data requesters cast a wide net when requesting or to make more
than one separate narrower data request? That’s a really good question. And I think that
narrower data requests can more poignantly answer maybe questions that you have.
However, sometimes we may do scoping reports, where someone maybe doesn’t know what
data are available and so that might be a more statistical report where
there’s going to be lots of hits and then they’re going to look at the noise
and that data and say okay maybe what I wanted instead was a more focused report
and that might be something where we provide PDFs and you can dig into the narrative.
So it definitely depends on your needs, and that’s why one of the steps in the
process is to have a conversation about what your needs are if you’re just
curious and you’re throwing out ideas, let’s pick one stick with it and
see where it goes from there. Yeah, and as the database guy, lots of
people talk to Amy and then she’ll come to me and say, hey somebody’s interested
in getting reports for the last five years in this state about this and this and
this, what’s that going to look like? And I can very quickly do just some counts,
just some raw numbers of incidents in that state for this AI and say hey there are only five
of these, right, or there are 500 of these and that can help inform and that
interaction and the final reports so we can do some of those initial checks
before doing a full official report if that will help you guys get what you need. So and that may say, okay well let’s
do a combined report with multiple AI’s or let’s pull one out that’s smaller
or whatever so we can definitely do that And that’s, if you just want to talk to us about it,
and we’re happy to help however we can. Absolutely. Thanks for those really good questions. If you haven’t tried an NPIC data request
in the past, I encourage you to try that. But otherwise, we’ll just hang around for a few
more questions. *Sean* Oh there is yeah we have We have one in the chat window here.
*Amy* Oh okay. Looks like we have another question. So they asked do you track whether a
call and or an exposure is occupational? If so how is that documented and
what details are included in that data? That’s a great question. I’m actually going
to flip back through my slides quickly to some information about exposures. So if you see about halfway down
right before the accidents list starts, we do categorize occupational accidents
or occupational exposures I should say. So these are exposures that occur while they’re
at work that have to do with their line of work. So that the number, it’s not as large as
we have for the specific route of exposure, but we would code that in addition to
routes of exposure or in addition to any kinds of spills or miss
applications that would occur as well. So there’s nothing that would limit
our use of that occupational code. Okay no other questions yet. We’ll leave
everyone just a couple more minutes, if you’re leaving us today I want to
thank you for joining us for the webinar the recording will be posted within two
weeks and you will get an automated email notifying you that when it’s available. Ok, I see we’re losing people.
So again, thanks everyone we’re going to go ahead and end the
webinar now, and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out and
contact NPIC or me personally. Thanks.