AgriSafe Nurse Scholar Program

The AgriSafe Nurse Scholar program is a distance learning opportunity available to rural nurses, nurse practitioners, and nurse educators. Education and training, provided by experienced health & safety educators, will enable rural nurses to increase their knowledge base in the prevention, identification, and assessment of diseases related to agricultural work exposures. Nurses who complete this course will be eligible for 23.75 hours of continuing nursing education provided by the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Classes are in the form of webinars that can be viewed OnDemand (on your own time). 

The AgriSafe Nurse Scholar course including all content, testing, and evaluation must be completed by March 15, 2024 to be eligible for Continuing Education.

Email nursescholar@agrisafe.org with any questions.


ACCREDITED CONTINUING EDUCATION

Joint Accredited Provider logo

In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by University of Nebraska Medical Center and AgriSafe. University of Nebraska Medical Center is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center designates this activity for 23.75 ANCC contact hours.


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This program is supported by:

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Key:

Complete
Failed
Available
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Welcome and Introductions
Acknowledgement
Agree to terms to continue.
Agree to terms to continue.
Nurse Scholar Participant Survey
13 Questions
13 Questions Please tell us a little bit more about yourself.
Course Pre-Test
30 Questions  |  1 attempt  |  0/30 points to pass
30 Questions  |  1 attempt  |  0/30 points to pass This test is an assessment of your knowledge about agricultural health and safety related issues before taking the AgriSafe Nurse Scholar Program.
Strategies to Address Emerging Issues in Agricultural Health
Presentation Slides- Strategies to Address Emerging Issues in Agricultural Health
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Strategies to Address Emerging Issues in Agricultural Health
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Objectives: Identify a minimum of four emerging challenges to practice in rural/agricultural communities. Locate a minimum of four evidence-based resources applicable to rural nursing practice. Identify hazards and risk factors when emerging issues erupt in rural communities. Access educational and community-based resources to provide care to rural residents experiencing mental health challenges related to climate change, racism, considerations regarding COVID-19.
Post Test- Strategies to Address Emerging Issues in Agricultural Health
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Emerging Issues Impacting Agriculture
5 Questions
Prevention Strategies to Protect Women Working in Agriculture
Presentation Slides- Prevention Strategies to Protect Women Working in Agriculture
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Prevention Strategies to Protect Women Working in Agriculture
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Nearly 300,000 women serve as principal operators on farms and ranches across the U.S. and countless more women live and work in an agricultural environment. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will review some of the women’s issues related to life in agriculture, the impact on their health and safety., and the intersect with rural healthcare providers. Objectives: List a minimum of four factors related to women's health and safety in agriculture. Discuss a minimum of three potential solutions that would address the unique safety and health challenges to women engaged in agriculture. Locate a minimum of three recommended clinical and community health resources that address women's agricultural health and safety program development and education needs.
Post Test- Prevention Strategies to Protect Women Working in Ag
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Prevention Strategies to Protect Women Working in Ag
5 Questions
Health and Safety Issues of the Aging Farmer
Presentation Slides- Health and Safety Issues of the Aging Farmer
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Health and Safety Issues of the Aging Farmer
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: The average age of a farmer in the U.S. is over 57 years old, indicating a high number of active farmers and ranchers working well past the usual perceived retirement age. This section of the Nurse Scholar program introduces the unique aspects of health and safety for aging farmers and their families using a Total Worker Health/Total Farmer Health lens including how health relates to work, family, and all aspects of the farmer’s life. It will provide a skill set for clinicians to apply to older farmers and provide resources that can improve quality of life. Objectives: Determine the difference between "normal" and "abnormal" aging processes. Apply a skill set to determine the health needs of the aging farmer. Identify resources and make appropriate referrals to assist aging farmers in their activities.
Post Test - Health & Safety Issues of the Aging Farmers
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Health & Safety Issues of the Aging Farmer
5 Questions
A Clinician’s Guide to Pediatric Farm-Related Injuries
Presentation Slides- A Clinician’s Guide to Pediatric Farm-Related Injuries
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: A Clinician's Guide to Pediatric Farm-Related Injuries
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Healthcare providers in agricultural communities frequently are not aware of the equipment, chemical, and animal-related opportunities for injuries and fatalities to youth. Injuries are the most common cause of death for children and adolescents, and farms and ranches present many unique hazards to youth that result in illness, injury, and death. Nurses will be better equipped to understand the types of injuries that too often occur to youth living and working in agriculture and have an increase in background knowledge to assess and treat youth in clinical environments. Objectives: - Name at least four specific safety hazards on farms and how one might counsel families to prevent injuries from those hazards. - Describe what a PTO is and how one avoids injuries associated with them. - State at least two ways to prevent injury when operating tractors. - Convey how one would attempt a rescue of someone caught in a grain bin, or manage an extremity caught in an auger. - Explain at least three reasons why off-road vehicles like all-terrain vehicles and utility task vehicles are not designed to be used on roads.
Post Test- A Clinician’s Guide to Pediatric Farm-Related Injuries
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: A Clinician’s Guide to: Pediatric Farm-Related Injuries
5 Questions
Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
Presentation Slides- Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Migrant and immigrant farmworkers, particularly Latino workers, comprise a large share of the agricultural workforce. As the demographic composition of many rural communities changes, it will be imperative for health professionals to understand the unique health and cultural challenges associated with serving their changing patient population. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will define who are migrant and immigrant farmworkers, discuss physical, behavioral, and social health characteristics of these workers, discuss available resources, and assist participants in working with diverse patient populations. Objectives: - Describe the population of migrant and immigrant farmworkers in the U.S. - Identify the physical, behavioral, and social health challenges found among migrant and immigrant farmworkers. - Locate evidence-based resources to serve migrant and immigrant farmworkers.
Post Test - Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass post webinar quiz for Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
Evaluation: Health and Well-Being of Immigrant and Migrant Farmworkers
5 Questions
Integration of Behavioral Health for Rural Practice
Presentation Slides- Integration of Behavioral Health for Rural Practice
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Integration of Behavioral Health for Rural Practice
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Rural mental health care is a challenge on several fronts – fewer qualified and licensed providers, distance from care, workplace demands, and the stigma that remains. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will highlight behavioral issues seen in rural communities, especially areas that have reduced access to mental health care providers who cover large geographical regions. Clinicians will have access to resources and receive contact information for rural mental health care specialists across the country. Objectives: Identify a minimum of three common stressors prevalent among agricultural producers. Describe at least four signs and symptoms of depression and anxiety. Describe a minimum of four population based and individual based behavioral health interventions. Locate three current evidenced based resources in the field of agricultural behavioral health.
Post Test - Integration of Behavioral Health for Rural Practice
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Integration of Behavioral Health for Rural Practice
5 Questions
Community Assessment and Interventions Addressing the Mental Health Gap in Rural Communities
Presentation Slides- Community Assessment and Interventions Addressing the Mental Health Gap in Rural Communities
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Community Assessment and Interventions Addressing the Mental Health Gap in Rural Communities
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Lack of access to mental health care in rural communities; Rural nurses and communities are unaware of evidence-based programming to address mental health disparities that is relevant to agrarian culture. Farmer suicides are 1.5 X the rate of the regular population, lack of access and mental health services require that communities mobilize available resources and programming specific their needs and concerns. Objectives: Identify three barriers in agricultural communities regarding mental health services and conversations among rural residents. Identify two potential rural stakeholders that could partner with a mental health initiative in an agricultural community. Name at least two community-based mental health trainings to develop a community network of mental health neighbors. Develop a plan for implementation and evaluation for a mental health initiative in agricultural communities.
Post Test- Community Assessment and Interventions Addressing the Mental Health Gap in Rural Communities
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Community Assessment and Interventions Addressing the Mental Health Gap in Agricultural Communities
5 Questions
Sleep Deprivation – the Impact on Agricultural Safety & Health
Presentation Slides- Sleep Deprivation
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Sleep Deprivation – The Impact on Agricultural Safety & Health
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: While most health education tends to focus on nutrition and activity, sleep is arguably the single most important factor in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and lack of it causes a significantly reduced quality of life. The National Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now identify sleep deficiency as a public health problem. The result of prioritizing helpful daytime behaviors and sleep hygiene improves every facet of overall well-being. Objectives: - Identify a minimum of two surprising functions of sleep and how lack of it affects physical and mental health. - Explain the differences in sleep needs for children vs. adults. - List at least three daily habits that interfere with a good night of sleep. - Describe 30 sleep tips and tricks to customize a plan to impact overall well-being.
Post Test- Sleep Deprivation – the Impact on Agricultural Safety & Health
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Sleep Deprivation – the Impact on Agricultural Safety & Health
5 Questions
Identification of Skin Diseases Common to the Agricultural Industry
Presentation Slides- Identification of Skin Diseases Common to the Agricultural Industry
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Identification of Skin Diseases Common to the Agricultural Industry
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: In addition to the high prevalence rate of skin cancer among agricultural workers, there are multiple dermatological exposures and infections resulting from close and persistent contact with animals, vegetation, and chemicals. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will address the stages of skin cancer and identifying markers, common dermatological infections and diseases, and the respective signs and symptoms, and preventative measures and treatment modalities. Objectives: Identify at least three signs of potential skin cancer. Recognize at least two symptoms of dermatological responses to chemical exposures. Recognize a minimum of four dermatological symptoms of exposure to animals and vegetation common in agricultural areas. Locate a minimum of four evidence-based resources for use in clinical practice and patient education. Integrate knowledge gained into identification, patient education, and treatment modalities for skin diseases common to the agricultural industry.
Post Test- Identification of Skin Diseases Common to the Agricultural Industry
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Identification of Skin Diseases Common to the Agricultural Industry
5 Questions
Prevention of Heat Related Illnesses in Agriculture
Presentation Slides- Prevention of Heat Related Illnesses in Ag
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Prevention of Heat-Related Illnesses in Agriculture
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Exposure to high and moderate heat conditions is a part of the workplace environment in production agriculture. For workers unprepared for intense or long-term exposure or workers with specific health challenges, there is a potential for serious heat-related illness. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will address the pathophysiology of heat-related illness and critical intervention steps to keep workers well. Objectives 1. Explain the pathophysiology of heat-related illnesses including heat stroke, heat exhaustion, syncope, heat rash, and heat cramps. 2. Recognize the dangers of a minimum of three pre-existing health conditions that contribute to heat-related illnesses. 3. Identify at least three medications contraindicated while working in extreme heat conditions. 4. Identify action steps to prevent heat stress and evidence-based resources recommended to use in patient/client teaching.
Post Test - Heat Related Illnesses
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  3/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  3/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Prevention of Heat Related Illnesses in Agriculture
5 Questions
The Opioid Crisis: Evolution, Impact on Workers, Mitigation Strategies
Presentation Slides- The Opioid Crisis: Evolution, Impact on Workers, Mitigation Strategies
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: The Opioid Crisis- Evolution, Impact on Workers, Mitigation Strategies
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Prescription drug overdoses are the leading cause of unintentional death in the United States. Opioid overuse, which accounts for a large fraction of unintentional drug deaths, is a serious public health problem in rural communities. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will explore the origins of the opioid epidemic, review the medical and social impacts of opioid prescriptions on workers and businesses, and discuss interventions to mitigate opioid overuse while providing appropriate treatment for injuries and pain. Objectives: Describe what the opioid crisis means. Discuss the recent history leading to the current opioid crisis. List three health consequences of opioid use and ways to reduce the likelihood of opioid dependence. Recognize the difference between physical dependence and addiction.
Post Test- The Opioid Crisis: Evolution, Impact on Workers, Mitigation Strategies
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: The Opioid Crisis: Evolution, Impact on Workers, Mitigation Strategies
5 Questions
Chemical/Pesticide Exposures and Health Effects in Agricultural Communities
Presentation Slides- Chemical/Pesticide Exposures and Health Effects in Agricultural Communities
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Chemical/Pesticide Exposures and Health Effects in Agricultural Communities
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Pesticide exposures in agriculture can have a far-reaching impact, not only on workers, but also their families. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will focus on the major agricultural pesticides that have been associated with toxic health effects in agricultural families. Exposure pathways will be described along with measures to reduce exposure, using examples from research programs. Major health effects according to chemical type will be discussed and prevention will be stressed and implications for nursing interventions will be emphasized. Objectives: Identify a minimum of three types of pesticides used in agriculture in the U.S. Discuss exposure pathways and interventions to prevent exposure in susceptible populations. Integrate the use of biomarkers to identify exposure and health effects in agricultural research. Discuss the clinicians' role in pesticide safety education with emphasis on the protection of vulnerable populations.
Post Test - Chemical/Pesticide Exposures and Health Effects in Agricultural Communities
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Chemical/Pesticide Exposures and Health Effects in Agricultural Communities
5 Questions
Zoonoses: Infectious Diseases We Share with Animals in the Farm Environment
Presentation Slides- Zoonoses: Infectious Diseases We Share with Animals in the Farm Environment
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Zoonoses- Infectious Diseases We Share with Animals in the Farm Environment
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: There are over 250 infectious diseases we share with animals. About two dozen of them are significant occupational hazards for agricultural workers and their families. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will address signs, symptoms, treatment, and prevention. It will be delivered in a story telling context by case example. Objectives: Identify evidenced-based references and resources that provide information on zoonotic infections. Recognize which zoonotic infections present a risk in a dairy operation. Recognize which zoonotic infections present a risk in a swine operation. Identify recommendations for prevention of zoonotic infections in a livestock production operation.
Post Test- Zoonosis: Infectious diseases we share with animals in the farm environment
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Zoonoses Infectious Diseases We Share with Animals in the Farm Environment
5 Questions
Allergic and Non-Allergic Respiratory Disease in Farmers
Presentation Slides- Allergic and Non-Allergic Respiratory Disease in Farmers
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Allergic and Non-Allergic Respiratory Disease in Farmers
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Healthcare providers in agricultural communities attend to workers presenting with exposures to commonplace allergic and non-allergic respiratory diseases. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will cover a general overview of allergic and non-allergic respiratory diseases including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hypersensitivity pneumonia, and organic dust toxic syndrome. Objectives: - Recognize allergic respiratory diseases and their relevance within the farming community. - Discuss the diagnostic evaluation of occupational induced asthma. - Recognize the common causes of non-allergic respiratory disease among farmers including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, organic dust toxic syndrome, and hypersensitivity pneumonitis. - Discuss treatment options for respiratory disease in farmers.
Post Test- Allergic & Non-Allergic Respiratory Disease
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Allergic and Non-Allergic Respiratory Disease in Farmers
5 Questions
Respiratory Health of Agricultural Producers in Clinical Practice
Presentation Slides- Respiratory Health of Agricultural Producers in Clinical Practice
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Respiratory Health of Agricultural Producers in Clinical Practice
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Agricultural producers are exposed to a variety of respiratory hazards in their day-to-day work environment. Because it is not always possible to eliminate these exposures, acute and chronic illnesses can and do occur. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will address the major exposure hazards, identify symptoms and preventive measures, and discuss the value of obtaining an occupational health history. Objectives: Review rural healthcare challenges for providers. Identify the importance of an occupational health history and a respiratory specific health assessment tool. Discuss the respiratory hazards and symptoms associated with agricultural activities. Implement the respiratory health assessment tool.
Post Test- Respiratory Health of Agricultural Producers in Clinical Practice
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Respiratory Health of Agricultural Producers in Clinical Practice
5 Questions
Increasing the Use of Hearing Protection Among Farmers: Best Practices
Presentation Slides- Increasing the Use of Hearing Protection Among Farmers: Best Practices
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Increasing the Use of Hearing Protection Among Farmers: Best Practices
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Farm operators, as well as farm youth, experience frequent exposure to high noise and have among the highest prevalence rates of hearing loss among all categories of workers. Additionally, noise exposure impacts multiple organ systems, contributing to cardiovascular disease, hypertension, obesity, and other highly prevalent diseases. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will address methods of assessing worker exposure to hazardous noise and evidence-based nursing approaches to protect workers from the negative effects of noise on hearing and worker well-being. Objectives: Discuss several risk factors for noise-induced health problems common among farmers. Describe major features of interventions shown to be effective in influencing farmers' use of hearing protection. Discuss best practices for clinical application of farm noise mitigation effectiveness research.
Post Test - Increasing the Use of Hearing Protection Among Farmers: Best Practices
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Increasing the Use of Hearing Protection Among Farmers: Best Practices
5 Questions
Ergonomic Considerations in Agriculture
Presentation Slides- Ergonomic Considerations in Agriculture
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Ergonomic Considerations in Agriculture
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: Agriculture as an occupation has one of the highest rates of chronic and acute musculoskeletal pain and injury – especially back pain. This section of the Nurse Scholar program is intended to help nurses practicing in rural/agricultural communities identify ergonomic issues leading to musculoskeletal injuries in farm and ranch patients as well as discover resources to aid in injury treatment and prevention. Summary Agriculture as an occupation has one of the highest rates of chronic and acute musculoskeletal pain and injury – especially back pain. This section of the Nurse Scholar program is intended to help nurses practicing in rural/agricultural communities identify ergonomic issues leading to musculoskeletal injuries in farm and ranch patients as well as discover resources to aid in injury treatment and prevention. Objectives: 1. Identify at least four aspects of agricultural work that can impact ergonomic health and safety of workers. 2. Explain a minimum of three strategies that can prevent injury in the agricultural work arena. 3. Locate four resources that apply to ergonomic well-being for agricultural workers.
Post Test- Ergonomic Considerations in Agriculture
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Ergonomic Considerations in Agriculture
5 Questions
Personal Protective Equipment Selection for Agricultural Producers
Presentation Slides- Personal Protective Equipment Selection for Agricultural Producers
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Video: Personal Protective Equipment Selection for Agriculture
Begin self-paced component package.
Begin self-paced component package. Summary: In addition to respiratory protective equipment, hearing, vision, torso, head, and skin protection is critical to agricultural health and safety. This section of the Nurse Scholar program will provide examples of recommended and evidence-based personal protective gear with discussion on appropriate use, wear, and maintenance. Objectives: - Describe multiple types of personal protective equipment appropriate for agricultural workers. - Identify work scenarios where personal protective equipment is important. - Review evidence-based resource material for use in clinical and community education settings.
Post Test - Personal Protective Equipment Selection for Agricultural Producers
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
5 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  4/5 points to pass
Evaluation: Personal Protective Equipment Selection for Agricultural Producers
5 Questions
Final Exam & Evaluation
Cumulative Final
30 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  24/30 points to pass
30 Questions  |  Unlimited attempts  |  24/30 points to pass You must score 24/30 (80%) in order to pass this cumulative exam. You have unlimited attempts to take this exam.
Overall Program Evaluation
22 Questions
Continuing Nursing Education Certificate
Nurse Scholar Continuing Nursing Education Certificate
23.75 Continuing Nursing Education Contact Hours credits  |  Certificate available
Badge available
23.75 Continuing Nursing Education Contact Hours credits  |  Certificate available
Badge available

Natalie Roy, MPH

Chief Executive Officer

AgriSafe Network

As Chief Executive Officer of AgriSafe for over twenty years, Natalie Roy utilizes her public health training to improve the quality of health care offered to farm families. Natalie holds a Masters in Public Health from Tulane University. She is pleased to work in the area of agricultural health as it relates to her experience growing up on a farm in Canterbury New Hampshire.

Knesha Rose-Davison, MPH

Public Health and Equity Director

AgriSafe Network

Mrs. Knesha Rose-Davison serves as the Public Health and Equity Director for AgriSafe Network. She has over 17 years of public health experience in maternal and child health, community health, health disparities, and advocacy. In May 2016, she joined AgriSafe Network as their health communications director, quickly growing into their public health programs director, where she managed employer-employee safety training for youth working in agriculture, opioid safety for health providers and agricultural workers, and women’s health topics. Knesha obtained her Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences (2002) and a Master of Public Health (2006) from Northern Illinois University. In June 2016, she obtained a certificate in Agricultural Medicine focused on rural occupational health, environmental health, and safety. She is a member of the American Public Health Association and the Louisiana Public Health Association, where she serves in leadership. Knesha is passionate about serving vulnerable populations and ensuring health access and equity, and she aligns all her work with these causes.

Marjorie McCullagh, PhD, RN, PHNA-BC, COHN-S, FAAOHN, FAAN

Professor and Occupational Health Nursing Program Director, University of Michigan School of Nursing

Marjorie McCullagh is Professor in the School of Nursing. She holds a PhD in nursing from the University of Michigan and has 20 years of clinical, teaching, and research experience in hearing conservation. Dr. McCullagh's career has focused on occupational health and safety, particularly as it relates to use of personal protection devices among farm operators and their families. Since 1985 she has had an active program of research in mitigating hazardous occupational exposures. She has conducted several randomized clinical trials, comparing the effectiveness of several approaches to influencing use of personal protective equipment. Dr. McCullagh is an associate professor and Director of the Occupational Health Nursing program at the University of Michigan School of Nursing.

Deborah B. Reed, MSPH, PhD, RN, FAAOHN, FAAN

Professor of Extension Community Health and Safety, University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, College of Nursing

Debbie grew up on family farm in Kentucky just a few miles from the University of Kentucky. She is currently the Extension Professor of Community Health and Safety at the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, affectionately known as the Ag Nurse. For the past 29 years Dr. Reed has worked with farm families throughout the nation to promote their health and prevent the many injuries that are so common in this occupation. She has developed and tested health education programs for children and youth on farms, and is upscaling the Farm Dinner Theater, a didactic readers’ theater for the farmer populations. The program that was designated as an Edge Runner by the America Academy of Nursing and is currently funded by the Rita and Alex Hillman Foundation. Dr. Reed is recognized internationally for her work on farm health and safety and farm family stress and suicide prevention. She loves communing with nature, , horses, angus cattle, and smelling newly mown hay.

Charlotte Halverson, RN, BSN, COHN-S

Total Farmer Health Coach, AgriSafe Network

Charlotte served as the Clinical Director for AgriSafe thru the end of 2022 and is currently a Total Farmer Health Coach. Prior to this role, she worked for several years in hospital acute care settings and community education.  During those years, Charlotte developed and managed a Rural Outreach Health service and a Parish Health Ministry department serving nine counties in northeast Iowa. She is a "charter graduate" of the University of IA agricultural occupational medicine course, is certified in occupational hearing conservation and completed the NIOSH Spirometry training. From 1997 to 2013, she provided agricultural occupational health services and program development for the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety.

Sarah Hunt, DNP, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC

Regis University and Sanford Center for Digestive Health

Kelley J. Donham, MS, DVM, DACVPM

Consultant in Agricultural Medicine and the Rural Health Clinic of Eastern Iowa

Dr. Donham is an Emeritus Professor, Occupational and Environmental Health, Iowa College of Public Health, having served as a professor on the faculty from 1973 – 2013.  The following are activities that he pursued:

  • Lead the Agriculture at Risk Policy Process, leading to the NIOSH National Agricultural Health and Safety Program (1987-1990)
  • Held the Pioneer Endowed Chair in Rural Health and Safety from 2009 – 2013.
  • Founded and directed the Agricultural Health and Safety Training Program at the University of Iowa, and the Building Capacity Training Program in Agricultural Medicine (1974 – 2013);
  • Founded and directed Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH 1990 - 2013);
  • Founded and directed the Iowa Health and Safety Service Network (1987-2003) (now the AgriSafe Network);
  • Founded and directed the Certified Safe Farm Program (1997- 2007).
  • Served as Deputy Director of The Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health (GPCAH) 1990 – 2013).
  • Co-founder of the Rural Health and Safety Clinic of Greater Johnson Country (2011).
  • He has published over 160 peer-reviewed articles, three books, and over 25 book chapters in the field of Agricultural Health and Safety.
  • Published 4 books in the field of rural health and Agricultural Medicine.  He (with co-author Anders Thelin MD of Sweden) published the first textbook in the field “Agricultural Medicine: Occupational and Environmental Health for the Health Professions” (Blackwell, 2006, Second edition 2016).

Kelley was born and raised on a swine and cow/calf farm in Johnson County, Iowa, where he was actively involved in the family farm operation for many years.  He still is actively involved in agriculture as he owns and manages with a colleague, the 440-acre Pleasant Creek Farm. Kelley obtained a B.S in Premedical Sciences, and an M.S. in Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health from the University of Iowa, College of Medicine, and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Iowa State University.  He practiced veterinary medicine for several years before returning to the University of Iowa as a faculty member in 1973.  He achieved the rank of full Professor in 1984.

Steve Kirkhorn, MD, MPH, FACOEM

Medical Director

AgriSafe Network

As AgriSafe Medical Director, Dr. Kirkhorn is responsible for the strategic direction and technical review of the occupational health curriculum, resources, and services. Dr. Kirkhorn serves as the medical leader liaison offering program wide engagement and collaboration, visibility, and opportunity directly contributing to AgriSafe’s success.

In addition to his role at AgriSafe, Dr Kirkhorn serves as Occupational Medicine Advisor to the NIOSH Upper Midwest Center for Agricultural Safety and Health at the University of Minnesota.

He received a BS in Zoology and MD at the University of Minnesota and a MPH in Environmental Health at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.  He served as the Academic Director of the Midwest Center for Occupational Health and Safety of the HealthPartners Occupational Environmental Medicine Residency.  He is boarded in Occupational Medicine and Family Practice and has been on the adjunct faculty of the University of Minnesota and University of Wisconsin Family Medicine Departments. He has been a practicing Occupational Medicine physician since 1991 and prior to that was a rural Family Practitioner for 10 years in Alaska and Wisconsin. He had completed a year sabbatical and fellowship in Agricultural Medicine in 1997-1998.

He previously was the Medical Director of the National Farm Medicine Center and Chair of Occupational Health and Chair/ Regional Service Line Director of Occupational Health at Marshfield Clinic in Wisconsin.  He has previously been on the board of AgriSafe and editor for 8 years of the Journal of Agromedicine as well as participating in of multiple agricultural health organizations nationally and in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

He is the recently retired Director and Section Chief of Occupational Health at the Minneapolis Veterans Administration Health Care System and Adjunct Associate Professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences in the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Medicine University of Minnesota Medical School.

His interests include, agricultural and rural occupational and environmental health, curriculum development, as well as birdwatching, biking, and kayaking.  He is also a Master Naturalist through the University of Minnesota Extension.

Rupali Das, MD, MPH, FACOEM

Senior Vice President, California Medical Director, Zenith Insurance Company, and Associate Clinical Professor, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, University of California San Francisco

Christine Chasek, PhD, LIMHP, LADC, LPC

Associate Professor and Chair of the Counseling Department, University of Nebraska - Omaha

Christine Chasek is an Associate Professor at the University of Nebraska Omaha.  She has strong rural roots and teaches many behavioral health classes in a Midwestern rural University.  Dr. Chasek has more than 20 years of experience practicing mental health and drug and alcohol counseling as a Licensed Independent Mental Health Practitioner and a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor in rural areas.  Dr. Chasek also serves on the Nebraska Alcohol and Drug Licensing Board and is President of the International Association of Addiction and Offender Counselors.    

Jill Poole, MD

Associate Tenured Professor, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Sleep and Allergy Medicine and Medical Director of Allergy Services at the University of Nebraska Medical Center

Dr. Poole is a board-certified clinical allergist and immunologist with an active laboratory focused on understanding agriculture-related environmental organic dust-induced lung and systemic bone disease.  This has been her focus for over ten years with grant funding from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.  She has had several important findings as part of her funded work. She enjoys collaborating with agriculture research centers in Nebraska and Colorado, particularly in human cross-sectional and epidemiological studies, and mentors PhD and post-doctoral students, and pulmonary fellows. 

Tara Haskins, DNP, MSN, RN, AHN-BC

Total Farmer Health Director, AgriSafe Network

Tara Haskins is a registered nurse with 33 years of clinical experience. She holds a Masters in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing and a Doctorate of Nursing Practice in Forensics. For the last 12 years, she has been a nurse educator in psychiatric-mental health concepts. Tara has experience in crisis/suicide intervention and addiction treatment in both outpatient and inpatient settings. She is a 2018 AgriSafe Nurse Scholar graduate. As a National Rural Health Association Fellow, she collaborated on a policy paper on disaster preparedness and response in rural communities. Tara continues to advocate at a national level for rural health services and programming.

Linda Emanuel, RN

Community Health Nurse, AgriSafe Network

Good health advocacy has been at the heart of Linda’s essence from her formative years as a farm girl in eastern Nebraska. Graduating from Nebraska Methodist School of Nursing in 1985, she worked as an R.N. in a variety of acute care hospital settings for over 30 years. She and her husband Tom raised three sons on a successful row crop operation that has been able to welcome the next generation and their families home to continue to diversify their family business. Linda served as a Fellow in the Nebraska LEAD program and has also received agrimedicine training at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Linda now serves on the advisory board for CS-CASH and a member of the AgriSafe team, as a Community Health Nurse.

Athena Ramos, PhD, MBA, MS, CPM

Community Health Program Manager, Associate Professor, Center for Reducing Health Disparities/Department of Health Promotion, Social, and Behavioral Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Athena Ramos is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Promotion and is affiliated with the Center for Reducing Health Disparities and the Central States Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (CS-CASH) at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) in Omaha, Nebraska. She leads a Latino outreach and engagement team and serves as principal investigator for a number of community-based health and social research and education initiatives in such areas as agricultural health and safety, immigrant integration, and community well-being. She is an experienced administrator, program manager, and junior researcher with proven ability to develop and implement social, health, and human service programs with culturally diverse populations. She has over 15 years of experience in health promotion, strategic thinking, community development, and public relations.

Charles Jennissen, MD

Clinical Professor, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine

Charles Jennissen, MD, is a pediatric emergency medicine physician and a Clinical Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. Dr. Jennissen grew up on a dairy farm in central Minnesota.  This plays a large part in his interest in safety and injury prevention, particularly regarding children and teens, and those who work and live on farms.  Most of his research activities have addressed injury-related issues, especially those involving off-road vehicles. Dr. Jennissen is very active in the Iowa ATV Safety Taskforce and is a member of a national coalition led by the Consumer Federation of America that has been working to inform the public and governing officials of the dangers of off-road vehicles on public roads. He has been an advisory board member of I-CASH (Iowa Center for Agricultural Safety and Health) for 22 years. He is proud to have received the SAFE KIDS Iowa “People Who Make a Difference” Award in 2006.

Susan Harris, MLS

Educator – Rural Health, Wellness, and Safety University of Nebraska Extension (Retired)

Susan has a 14-year history of education, liaison, and administrative work in health, wellness, and safety.  The passion she brings to teaching about the crucial need for quality sleep is derived from personal experience and curiosity about sleep.  This has resulted in extensive research on the topic and interviews with pulmonologists, physicians, sleep center managers, sleep study patients, professors, and research experts.  Susan’s education includes a bachelor’s degree in Family and Consumer Sciences in Business, as well as a master’s degree in Health and Human Performance – Gerontology. 

Diana R. Simmes, MPH

Pesticide Medical Education Director University of California Davis Continuing & Professional Education + Courtesy Assistant Professor of Practice Oregon State University

Diana Simmes is the Pesticide Medical Education Director of PERC-med. PERC-med is a Cooperative Agreement between the U.S. EPA and the University of California Davis and in collaboration with Oregon State University. Prior to joining PERC-med Ms. Simmes was the Academic Coordinator of the Institute for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Discovery at UC San Diego. She has lead maternal and child health research studies including serving in a position critical to the successful operation of the National Children's Study-San Diego County, a longitudinal study examining the effects of environmental influences on child health and development. She holds an MPH from Boston University and has consulted with the American Academy of Pediatrics, directed programs on pressing public health issues, and collaborated with health care providers and community-based organizations across the country.

Accredited Continuing Education

In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by University of Nebraska Medical Center and AgriSafe. University of Nebraska Medical Center is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center designates this activity for 23.75 ANCC contact hours.

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