Purpose and History
The NMA Commission on Environmental Health and its predecessor, the Environmental Health Task Force, were formed to address the increasingly negative effects of the environment on public health and health disparities. The Environmental Health Task Force was established in 1999. It was originally led by Dr. Albert Morris and Dr. Jewel Crawford. After the September 11, 2001 terrorists attack and the mailing of anthrax-laced letters and packages shortly hereafter, the focus of the Task Force for several years became bioterrorism.
The Environmental Task Force was reestablished after a period of dormancy by NMA President Dr. Leonard Weather, who appointed Dr. Mark Mitchell and Dr. Jewel Crawford as its leaders. Dr. Yolanda Whyte serves as vice chair. The focus has been on congressional reform of national chemical policy to make it protective of health, especially for communities of color and other vulnerable populations. Most recently, the focus has been on documenting and addressing health effects of climate change in our patients.
In 2014, the Commission on Environmental Health was established under the Council on Medical Legislation to provide a more permanent platform for NMA's environmental health planning, programming and advocacy.
NMA's Commission on Environmental Health
Environmental Health Policy and Program Activity Reports
Members of the NMA Commission on Environmental Health are educating NMA members on a wide variety of health effects of environmental exposures at NMA conferences and conventions for purposes of diagnosing and treating environmental- and chemical-related diseases as well as to provide information for patient education and public advocacy.
Environmental Health Policy Positions