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NC Department of Health and Human Services
NC Division of Public Health
N.C. Public Health Home

Occupational & Environmental Epidemiology

Pesticides & Health

The uses of pesticides are regulated under both federal and state law. In North Carolina, the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NC-DACS) regulates the use of pesticide products, while staff in the Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology Branch (OEEB) of the Division of Public Health work to address public health concerns regarding pesticides. The staff in OEEB include toxicologists, industrial hygienists, physicians, and an occupational health nurse. Their responsibilities include:

  • Responding to questions and concerns from the general public about health and environmental effects of pesticide exposures;
  • Participating in field investigations of pesticide exposures;
  • Serving on committees and boards that oversee the regulatory and advisory programs on pesticides; and
  • Monitoring acute pesticide-related illness and injury through case-based surveillance to determine the number of citizens who become ill from using pesticides, what groups are affected most, and what factors contribute to over-exposure. Data are used to recommend ways to improve handling practices. Learn more about pesticide illness and injury surveillance.

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