Faculty and Acknowledgements

Paula Schenck MPH is an environmental health specialist with the Center for Indoor Environments and Health at UConn Health. October 6, 2017 (Tina Encarnacion/UConn Health photo)

Paula Schenck, M.P.H.

Education: Simmons College Bachelor of Science; UConn Graduate School, Master of Public Health.

Title: Director, Indoor Environments and Health Programs

Organization: UConn Health, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Relevant Expertise: Paula Schenck is the overall course director and primary author of the resources for health provider module for UConn Health’s web-based course on mold and moisture for clinicians. She entered the public health arena with interest in how human disease could be ameliorated or possibly prevented by addressing the environment. She co-established the Center for Indoor Environments and Health to focus specific strengths within UConn on this objective. She interviews patients and provides guidance to physicians at the UConn Health Occupational and Environmental Medicine clinic on environmental exposures. She teaches environmental health at UConn and has facilitated occupational medicine segments in the medical school. She was the principal investigator of a project on hurricanes, mold and health that included trainings for workers, volunteers and the public on reducing their exposures when encountering flooded environments. She was a co-author and the course director of UConn’s previously offered guidances on mold and moisture, and she served as faculty for a series of mold and moisture trainings at cities around the country. She was lead author on a report Climate Change, Indoor Air Quality and Health written for the Environmental Protection Agency, and co-wrote a chapter: Effective Risk Communication Concerning Environmental Change with Communities and Patients Exposed to Excessive Indoor Moisture or Mold published in Bioaerosols – Fungi, Bacteria, Mycotoxins in Indoor and Outdoor Environments and Human Health, 2012.

Phone: 860-679-2368
Email: schenck@uchc.edu

Marc Croteau, M.D.,M.P.H.

Marc Croteau, M.D., M.P.H.

Education: Boston College Bachelor of Science; Dartmouth Medical School, Doctor of Medicine; UConn Graduate School, Master of Public Health.

Title: Clinical Assistant Professor

Organization: UConn Health, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Relevant Expertise: Marc Croteau is the primary author of the module on mold exposure and health effects in the settings of hurricane disaster preparation and response, and other flooded environments for UConn Health’s web-based clinician’s course on mold and moisture. Dr. Marc Croteau is board-certified in Family Medicine and in Preventive Medicine-Occupational Medicine. He has practiced in emergency medicine, primary care, and occupational medicine. Dr. Croteau is clinical director of the Occupational and Environmental Clinic and the Employee Health Program at UConn Health and mentors individual medical students and residents on electives and rotations. He precepts in the first year principles of clinical medicine curriculum and introduces principles of workplace safety and health to the incoming classes of medical students and dental students. Other teaching experience includes the Public Health Disaster Preparedness and Response course for the Masters in Public Health Program at UConn Health.

Phone: 860-679-3744
Email: croteau@uchc.edu

Joanne Burcher, M.D., M.P.H.

Education: Drew University, Bachelor of Arts; College of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ-Robert Woods Johnson School of Medicine), Master of Medical Science; New York Medical College, Doctor of Medicine

Title: Physician and Public Health Researcher

Organization: Consultant to UConn Health, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Relevant Expertise: Joanne Burcher developed guidelines for health providers to address prevention and treatment of illness in home occupants, and response and recovery workers after mold exposure in severely flooded environments as part of UConn Health’s Division of Occupational and Environmental Health Hurricanes and Mold work. The material was integrated into the resources for clinicians module in UConn Health’s web-based clinician’s course on mold and moisture. Dr. Burcher‘s training includes Family Medicine and Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Since 2011 she has collaborated on a number of educational and training projects that translated research results into information understandable to medical and non-medical audiences. Dr. Burcher is experienced in the evaluation and treatment of respiratory illnesses resulting from occupational and environmental exposures, in particular patients exposed to damp and moldy environments. She has conducted educational training sessions on asthma prevention, on reducing workplace exposures to cleaning agents, and on infectious disease outbreak management.

Phone: 413-244-2829
Email: jobp216@hotmail.com

De-Wei Li, PhD

De-Wei Li, Ph.D.

Education: Nanjing Technological College of Forest Products (Currently, Nanjing Forestry University), Bachelor of Science; Lakehead University, Masters of Science; University of Waterloo, Doctor of Philosophy

Title: Research Mycologist

Organization: The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station Valley Laboratory

Relevant Expertise: De-Wei Li has provided review and expert comment with respect to mold and environment in all segments of the UConn Health’s web-based clinician’s course on mold and moisture. Dr. Li advises the Center for Indoor Environments and Health at UConn Health on assessment of indoor exposures from biological growth. This has included input to assess patients’ exposures in their homes and workplaces as well as to research design for explorations of the relationship of mold exposures in offices and homes with health outcomes. Dr. Li contributed to UConn’s previously offered guidances on mold and moisture. Dr. Li’s current research focuses on spatial-temporal patterns and release/dispersal mechanisms of airborne fungi indoors and outdoors, succession of fungi on building materials, indoor mold inspection, indoor microfungal diversity, and biosystematics of Stachybotrys, Memnoniella and other asexual fungi. Dr. Li is an associate editor of Aerobiologia and book editor of Biology of Microfungi, Springer.

Phone: 860-683-4979
Email: dewei.li@ct.gov

Much work at UConn Health’s Center for Indoor Environments and Health on occupational/environmental exposures to mold preceded development of this course. The course is an update to Guidance for Clinicians on the Recognition and Management of Health Effects Related to Mold Exposure and Moisture Indoors and Patient Documentation Tables that were first offered in 2004 in paper format. The guidance was expanded in an on-line Continuing Medical Education program, Guidance for Clinicians: Mold and Moisturein 2009. The faculty acknowledges with gratitude these individuals, who participated in these earlier efforts: Anne Bracker C.I.H., M.P.H., Kenneth H. Dangman M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., Robert L. DeBernardo M.D., M.P.H., Eileen Storey M.D., M.P.H., William A. Turner M.S., P.E., and Chin S. Yang Ph.D. The committee thanks Cristina Mullin, project assistant on UConn Health’s Division of Occupational and Environmental Health Hurricanes and Mold work, and Ronald T. Collins and Tina Encarnacion from UConn Health’s Health Marketing & Multimedia Service Department for their work on the production of this course. The faculty is grateful for the encouragement from individuals in the UConn Office of Continuing and Community Education, and colleagues from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Indoor Environments Division, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the Connecticut Department of Public Health’s Environmental and Occupational Health Assessment, Occupational Health Unit. This course was developed solely by the course faculty and does not necessarily represent the official views of these federal and state agencies.