A Multi-Level Approach to Heat Related Illness Prevention in Agricultural Workers

This study works in collaboration with Washington state growers and workers, farmworker housing partners, and Washington State University’s AgWeatherNet. This participatory intervention project introduces timely heat safety guidance to employers.

To date, the project team and its advisory board have completed English and Spanish versions of the participatory training program, “Heat Education & Awareness Tools (HEAT): A train-the-trainer guide for the identification, prevention, and treatment of heat illness in outdoor agricultural workers.” Additionally, the Heat Awareness app developed in conjunction with WSU AWN has been finalized and released in English and Spanish. Once downloaded, a user selects the WSU AWN weather station(s) of interest. When a hot day is forecasted, a notification provides a worker health risk category and agriculture-specific recommendations.

Findings as reported at the end of year five are included in our interim report.

Principal Investigator: June Spector, MD, MPH
Associate Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
University of Washington

NIOSH 2016-2022

Partnerships and Advisories
Washington State University, AgWeatherNet Program

Resources
UW Newsletter: Gabino Abarca: Bridging the Gap Between Research and Agricultural Work

Tigchelaar M, Battisti DS, Spector JT. Work Adaptations Insufficient to Address Growing Heat Risk for U.S. Agricultural Workers. Environ.Res Lett. 2020Sep;15(9):094035.

Heat Education & Awareness Tools (HEAT) training materials

Heat Knowledge Results Posters

Products​​​​​​

Egbert, J., Krenz, J., Sampson, P.D., Jung, J., Calkins, M., Zhang, K., Palmández, P., Faestel, P., and Spector, J.T. (2022) Accuracy of an estimated core temperature algorithm for agricultural workers, Archives of Environmental & Occupational Health. 

Marquez, D., Krenz, J.E., Chavez Santos, E., Torres, E.,  Palmández, P., Sampson, P.D., Blancas, M., Carmona, J. and Spector, J.T. (2022) The Effect of Participatory Heat Education on Agricultural Worker Knowledge, Journal of Agromedicine, 2022, Ahead of Print. 1-12.

Krenz, J., Chavez Santos, E., Torres, E., Palmández, P., Carmona, J., Blancas, M., Marquez, D., Sampson, P., and  Spector, J.T. "The multi-level heat education and awareness tools [HEAT] intervention study for farmworkers: rationale and methods.Contemporary clinical trials communications 2021 Jun 8;22:100795.

Projects

Heat, Exposure, Injury Risk, and Productivity in Agricultural Workers

Pilot: Study of Risk Factors for Health-Related Illness in Agricultural Workers