SACRAMENTO, Calif. May 15, 2018 – The final opportunity for those impacted by the October 2017 fires to share their experiences on the Northern California Fire and Health Impacts Survey is coming soon.
The survey, led by UC Davis public health researchers, closes at midnight on May 31. Until then, it can be completed online in English here: https://ucdavis.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_aaS1gHzT5AKhdsh
It is also available in Spanish here: https://ucdavis.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_escEpHgWHa3l4iN
The researchers are inviting one person per household in fire- or smoke-affected areas throughout Northern California to fill out the survey, regardless of how much, or how little, household members were affected by flames, smoke or ash from the fires. The questions generally take about 20 to 30 minutes to complete, and responses are confidential.
The goal is to better understand the health effects of the fires through the experiences of those living in affected communities.
“We’re also interested in learning about the needs of those going through the rebuilding process,” said lead researcher Irva Hertz-Picciotto, professor of public health sciences and director of the Environmental Health Sciences Center at UC Davis.
The results could help close gaps in disaster relief services, inform clinicians about continuing health impacts, improve preparedness for future fire catastrophes and reduce the effects of fires on health.
“Including as many experiences with these firestorms as possible is critical to communicating the full range of outcomes, needs, and repercussions for diverse communities and potentially bringing all who were affected closer to full recovery,” Hertz-Picciotto said.
Research on the October 2017 Northern California fires is essential, because they were unique in scope, intensity, and the extent to which they affected residential and commercial areas, Hertz-Picciotto added.
“We are very grateful to those who have already taken the time to complete the survey and told us about their experiences, as they are providing personal perspectives and insights into the short- and medium-term consequences of these fires,” she said. “We look forward to hearing from others, including those who don’t usually participate in research studies or whose voices often are not heard.”
Answers to common questions about the survey are available online here: http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/newsroom/releases/20180221_fire_health_survey.html
Additional questions can be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The survey is part of a comprehensive post-fire assessment known as “WHAT-Now-California?” being conducted by the UC Davis Environmental Health Sciences Center. Established in 2015, the center links UC Davis experts in multiple schools — medicine, veterinary medicine, engineering, biological sciences, letters and science, and agricultural and environmental sciences — for studies on the effects of environmental events, chemicals, pollutants, and disasters on disease and disability. The ultimate goal is to foster new approaches and policies that protect communities from harmful exposures. More information is available on the center’s website: https://ehscc.ucdavis.edu/