Identification of sentinel health events as indicators of environmental contamination

Environ Health Perspect. 1991 Aug;94:261-3. doi: 10.1289/ehp.94-1567956.


The consensus process was applied to addressing a public health topic; this was a novel endeavor. The following question was addressed: What role, if any, should sentinel health events play in the decision-making process for identifying the effects of environmental exposure? The panel developed three levels of sentinel health events lists: those that are clearly identifiable, those that are potential signs, and those that are indicators of body burdens. Additionally, the panel developed several salient statements regarding the principles of environmental health surveillance and, especially, recommendations for future research.

Publication types

  • Congress
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Body Burden
  • Environmental Exposure
  • Environmental Health*
  • Environmental Pollution*
  • Humans