The BHSC is composed of several subcommittees that engage in teams to work on select areas of interest and ability.
Medical & Epidemiological
The Medical and Epidemiological Subcommittee follows beryllium medical, epidemiological and toxicological research; studies of workforces exposed to beryllium; and developments in screening and diagnostic tests for beryllium sensitization and CBD. The subcommittee serves as a forum for discussion among occupational health personnel, epidemiologists, and other persons interested in understanding the health effects of beryllium. Discussion topics include beryllium sensitization, chronic beryllium disease, relationship of health effects to beryllium exposure, Be LPT screening, and removal of sensitized personnel from potential beryllium exposure
This subcommittee attempts to identify and prioritize research topics which have utility for sampling, analysis, control and prevention of chronic beryllium disease. As part of this effort it reviews the current literature and attempts to summarize major trends in research. These summaries can take the form of presentations or white papers to be disseminated within the BHSC and made available to interested parties. The primary output of the committee is a list of research topics and the status of research activities and their respective funding support. Membership for the Research Needs Subcommittee is comprised of all interested in research and pursuing funding for the research. Current topics include Beryllium Real-Time Monitoring, Decontamination Technologies, Decontamination Technology Test Methods, Particle Counting Techniques applied to control of beryllium workzones, Resuspension Studies, and use of organosilanes coatings to beryllium oxide to be reduce the risk of disease.
Sampling & Analysis
The Sampling and Analysis Subcommittee is dedicated to researching and addressing the issues associated with sampling and analysis of beryllium particulates. The subcommittee comprises primarily Industrial Hygienists and Lab Analysts who focus on understanding and establishing state of the art standard methods for monitoring, sampling, and analyzing samples for beryllium for the primary purpose of improving exposure monitoring
This subcommittee is exploring best practices in the education of personnel engaged in work activities with beryllium bearing materials. Since the primary manufacturer of beryllium indicates up to 8000 downstream fabricators and consumer organizations, there is a wide range of operational environments where personnel are potentially exposed. Beryllium sensitization and Chronic Beryllium Disease (CBD) continue to be identified in the worker community, and the mechanism of disease remains unclear. Therefore, communication of all available information to the worker/supervisor, manager, and health care provider are important to impress upon all the need for prudent avoidance of exposures.
The Technical Practices Subcommittee focuses on how best to manage activities that involve potential exposure of workers to beryllium-containing particulates. The subcommittee seeks to determine and disseminate information on best practices for minimizing the generation and spread of beryllium contamination, to evaluate and recommend workplace health standards and guides that consist of programs for controlling the beryllium health hazard, and specific measures that can be taken to minimize the incidence of beryllium disease
Meetings & Symposia
The Meetings and Symposia Subcommittee is responsible for the following: