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University of Iowa News Release


July 30, 2007

UI Offers Certificate Program In Agricultural Safety And Health

Farming is one of the nation's most hazardous occupations, according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. A new certificate program in agricultural safety and health developed by the University of Iowa College of Public Health will train students to prevent, detect and treat farm-related illnesses and injuries.

The UI is the first to implement such a training program, according to Kelley Donham, D.V.M., UI professor of occupational and environmental health and the director of the certificate program. Approximately 700 farmers die annually due to occupational injuries, and an additional 150,000 suffer disabling injuries, Donham said.

"There are relatively few health professionals who have specific knowledge about how to recognize, treat or prevent these conditions," Donham said. "We are well equipped to understand the problem, and we have resources to meet the important need of training health professionals for the benefit of rural and agricultural populations."

The program will be available for distance delivery for health professionals located across the country. It will also be available for students in related health programs who can complete the certificate to supplement other training that does not have agricultural health information.

The admission requirements for the 12-hour program include a bachelor's degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA from an accredited university or equivalent experience and education. Health professionals or those training to be health professionals in rural areas are encouraged to apply.

Employment opportunities for students with a certificate in agricultural safety and health include positions in health care delivery, government and in the private sector.

For more information about the certificate program, contact Kelley Donham, training program director, at 319-335-4190 or

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa College of Public Health Office of Communications, 4257 Westlawn, Iowa City, Iowa 52242.

MEDIA CONTACT: Debra Venzke, 319-335-9647,; Writer: Brandy Huseman.