MPH In Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Occupational and Environmental Medicine (OEM) is a wide-ranging preventive medicine specialty focused on the evaluation, treatment, and prevention of disease related to environmental and occupational exposures. OEM physicians treat work-related injuries and diseases, recognize and resolve workplace and environmental hazards, conduct research to understand and prevent illnesses and injuries related to the workplace and the environment, and guide occupational and environmental health public policy. The MPH in Occupational & Environmental Medicine (MPH-OEM) degree is geared towards physicians and is typically offered in conjunction with an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited two-year residency, including the University of Washington OEM residency and Madigan Army Medical Center Public Health residency. Upon successful completion of the MPH-OEM degree and a residency in either OEM or Public Health, participants are eligible for board certification by the American Board of Preventive Medicine. The MPH-OEM degree combines broad training in public health with specific training in occupational and environmental medicine. The program of study includes core courses in occupational and environmental medicine, environmental health, epidemiology, biostatistics, health services administration, and social and behavioral health sciences. In addition, students are required to conduct a research-based master's thesis. OEM and Public Health residency training counts toward the public health practicum, another requirement of the MPH-OEM degree.
Career Paths of Recent Graduates
This degree is designed for individuals who anticipate careers in occupational and environmental medicine, whether in clinical practice, academics, or public health practice. Alumni of this degree and concurrent residency program are leaders in the field who influence public policy to improve occupational and environmental health. Recent graduates from this degree option are currently working as:
- An Associate Medical Director for Occupational Diseases at Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (Class of 2016)
- An Occupational Medicine Physician at the Everett Clinic (Class of 2015)
- A Clinical Instructor in the University of Washington Department of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine, and the Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences, and core Occupational and Environmental Medicine faculty member (Class of 2017)
Current Student Profile
"Prior to entering the Occupational & Environmental Medicine residency program, I was a Flight Surgeon in the Air Force. In that capacity, I was able to participate in work site visits, fit-for-duty examinations, and policy revisions. This inspired my interest in occupational medicine.
The courses I have taken as part of the MPH-OEM degree program have given me a solid foundation on which to build future research projects and a deeper understanding of study complexities. In addition, the clinical rotations during my second year have allowed me to experience a variety of different specialities and have deepened my understanding of occupational diseases. My thesis project focuses on examining occupational exposures to metals and the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease and all-cause dementia utilizing a population based cohort. Upon completion of the degree, I will start working with Kaiser Permanente Washington in the Occupational Medicine clinics."
Analysis of an Intervention to Reduce Truck Drivers' Exposure to Whole Body Vibration
Student: Thomas Louwers (2016)
Faculty Advisor: Peter Johnson
Ambient Air Pollution and Lung Cancer Risk in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study
Student: Shilpa Gowda (2016)
Faculty Advisor: Joel Kaufman
Correlation Analysis of Sleep Study Variables in Obese v. Non-obese Military Personnel Diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Student: Stephen Cho (2015)
Faculty Advisor: Debra Cherry