Fellowship Project: Assessing the Role of Occupation on Home Exposures in a Disadvantaged Community
Dr. Ceballos strives to better understand the connection between exposure to hazards in the workplace, the community, and in the home, where workers may unwittingly bring home pollutants and transfer hazards to their children. She earned a Master’s degree in atmospheric chemistry and a PhD in Environmental and Occupational Hygiene. She is also a board certified industrial hygienist. She became a JPB Environmental Health Government Fellow in 2014 because she worked at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) as an Industrial Hygienist conducting health hazard evaluations and providing industrial hygiene technical and consultative assistance to Federal, State, and local agencies, labor, industry, and other groups or individuals to control occupational health hazards and to prevent related trauma and diseases. Dr. Ceballos became a Harvard Chan visiting scientist from 2015 to 2016 and a research scientist since 2017. She is also an instructor in three Harvard Chan graduate courses.
Dr. Ceballos is interested in occupational health and safety research related to exposure assessment, field sampling and analysis, workplace interventions, best practices, risk communication, and outreach. She has been particularly interested in multiple chemical exposures, dermal protection, green industries, and occupational health disparities. Her exposure science expertise and passion for diversity provides her with a privileged position to work with other scientists around the nation through the JPB fellowship to solve problems related to occupational health of underserved populations.
Currently, at the Department of Environment Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Dr. Ceballos is leading research to develop novel exposure assessment techniques, assess exposures, and identify safer alternatives and controls in the nail salon and electronic recycling industries – industries facing challenges from new technologies and employing vulnerable workers. She is also co-leading two longitudinal epidemiological pilot studies related to chemical sensitivities through the Harvard Chan Center for Health and the Global Environment.
Assessing the Role of Occupation on Home Exposures in a Disadvantaged Community. Being an immigrant, low English proficiency, and low levels of education have been associated with higher rates of injuries among minorities. Minority workers may also have a higher likelihood to hold the so-called “dirty jobs,” being exposed to chemicals at work, and transporting chemicals home from work, known as “take home.” Further, health disparities could exacerbate how work interplays with exposures at home and how it ultimately affects health. This study aims to better understand the connection between home and work-related exposures in a high-risk community by identifying occupation-specific sources of home exposure. We will assess the relationship between home and potential for take home with a survey and environmental sampling for metals and semi volatile compounds (SVOCs) including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Participants and household members will be referred to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Biomonitoring Massachusetts Study for biomonitoring of metals and PCBs to verify take home. We will work with the Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety & Health (MassCOSH) to train participants on ways to mitigate these exposures. This project is also funded by CRESSH
Ceballos, Diana & West, Christine & Methner, Mark & Gong, Wei. (2018). Hexavalent Chromium Exposure and Nasal Tissue Effects at a Commercial Aircraft Refinishing Facility. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 1. 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001510.
Young AS, Allen JG, Kim UJ, Seller S, Webster TF, Kannan K, Ceballos DM. Environ Sci Technol. 2018. doi:10.1021/acs.est.8b04495 [Epub ahead of print].
Beaucham C, Ceballos D, Mueller C, Page E, La Guardia M. Field evaluation of sequential hand wipes for flame retardant exposure in an electronics recycling facility. Chemosphere 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2018.12.027
Ceballos D, Broadwater K, Page E, Croteau G, La Guardia MJ. Occupational Exposure to Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) and Other Flame Retardant Foam Additives at Gymnastics Studios: Before, During and After the Replacement of Pit Foam with PBDE-Free Foams. Environmental International, 116:1-9, 2018.
Bakhiyi B, Labrèche F, Gravel S, Ceballos D, Flynn M, Zayed J. Has the question of e-waste opened a Pandora’s Box? An overview of unpredictable issues and challenges of recycling. Environmental International, Vol 10, Pages 173–192, 2018.
Beaucham C, Ceballos D, King B. Lessons learned from surface wipe sampling for lead in three workplaces. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene. 14:8, 611-619, 2017.
Ceballos D, Beaucham C, and Page E. Metal exposures at three U.S. electronic scrap recycling facilities. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene. 14(6):401-408. 2017.
Ceballos D and Dong Z. The Formal Electronic Recycling Industry: Environmental and Occupational Health Research Challenges and Opportunities. Environmental International. 95: 157-166. 2016.
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This information is accurate as of the fellowship year indicated for each fellow.