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Risks to humans as a consequence of chemical exposures are a complex issue with worldwide implications, especially in our modern societies. The effective management of human exposure to a variety of chemicals present in various sectors of society has indeed become a very important public health policy issue - and risk assessment promises a systematic way for developing appropriate strategies to aid public health risk management decisions. Risk assessment generally serves as a tool that can be used to organize, structure, and compile scientific information in order to help identify existing hazardous situations or problems, anticipate potential problems, establish priorities, and provide a basis for regulatory controls and/or corrective actions.
In fact, with the control and containment of most infectious conditions and diseases of the past millennium having been achieved in most developed countries, and with the resultant increase in life expectancies, much more attention seems to have shifted to degenerative health problems. Many of the degenerative health conditions have been linked to thousands of chemicals regularly encountered in human living and occupational/work environments. It is important, therefore, that human health risk assessments are undertaken on a consistent basis - in order to determine the potential impacts of the target chemicals on public health.
This book provides a concise, yet comprehensive overview of the many facets/aspects relating to human health risk assessments in relation to chemical exposure problems. It presents some very important tools and methodologies that can be used to address chemical exposure and public health risk management problems in a consistent, efficient, and cost?effective way. Overall the book represents a collection and synthesis of the principal elements of the risk assessment process that pertain to human exposures to chemicals in the human living and work environments. It offers an understanding of the scientific basis of risk assessment and its applications to public health policy decisions.
Dedication.- Preface.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Human Exposure to Chemicals.- 3. Principles and Concepts in Risk Assessment.- 4. Principal Elements of a Public Health Risk Assessment for Chemical Exposure Problems.- 5. Chemical Hazard Determination.- 6. Exposure Assessment: Analysis of Human Intake of Chemicals.- 7. Evaluation of Chemical Toxicity.- 8. Chemical Risk Characterization and Uncertainty Analyses.- 9. Determination of "Acceptable" and "Safe" Levels of Chemical Exposure.- 10. Design of Public Health Risk Management Programs.- 11. The Role of Risk Assessment in Public Health Policy Decisions. List of References and Bibliography.- Appendix A: Glossary of Selected Terms and Definitions.- Appendix B: Selected Tools, Chemical Exposure Models, and Chemical Databases for Public Health Risk Policy Decision-Making.- Appendix C: Toxicity Index Parameters for Selected Chemicals.- Appendix D: Selected Units of Measurement & Noteworthy Expressions.- Index.