Starkey Citizens for a Clean & Healthy Environment
Patient Evaluation: Dr. Adam Law, Fellow of the U.K. Royal College of Physicians

Published on Feb 11, 2013
Continuing Medical Education (CME) Activity Jointly Sponsored by Physicians Scientists & Engineers for Healthy Energy and the Medical Society of the State of New York.

Educational Objectives:
In this interview Denise DeJohn, an onsite nurse practitioner at the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project (EHP) in Washington County, PA, discusses patient evaluation with Adam Law, MD. She discusses the most common symptoms exhibited at EHP and offers recommendations for referral pathways, testing, and overall treatment of patients who believe their health has been impacted by natural gas drilling operations. This lecture will provide a practical approach to the clinical evaluation of patients presenting with medical problems that may arise from unconventional natural gas activities.

After completing this lecture the learner will be able to:
1. Describe the most common symptoms in patients presenting to the EHP in Washington County and why these symptoms are linked to shale gas emissions exposure.
2. Describe the questions that can be used to get at the root of an environmental exposure history. 3. Describe communication barriers physicians might face in dealing with patients.
4. List the types of questions which elicit answers that get at potential pathways of exposure.
5. Describe the overall approach and physical assessment of patients who believe their health has been impacted by gas drilling activities. 6. Describe how co-morbid conditions can be exacerbated by exposures.
7. Describe best recommendations for screening, testing, referral pathways, and mitigation practices for affected individuals.

Denise DeJohn is a Registered Nurse and Family Nurse Practitioner with 18 years of experience in the healthcare field. She completed her MS in Nursing at Wheeling Jesuit University. She has worked as a Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner in the emergency, urgent care/clinic and family practice settings. During her studies she worked clinical rotations in family practice, emergency medicine, neurological/stroke medicine, and outpatient health and primary care clinics. She received her BS in nursing from Waynesburg University. In addition to her nursing degrees, Denise also graduated from The Washington Hospital School of Nursing.

A specialist in endocrinology and diabetes, practicing in Ithaca, Dr. Adam Law, a Fellow of the U.K.'s Royal College of Physicians, is also Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. He trained in medicine at The Middlesex Hospital Medical School at the University of London, distinguishing himself by winning all eight major clinical prizes offered by the school, including a gold medal in surgery. After gaining membership in the Royal College of Physicians he turned his attention to medical science, and received a masters degree in biochemistry with distinction and a doctorate from the University of London. He has held post-doctoral fellowships at the University of California, San Francisco and Cornell University. He has published 13 research papers in clinical medicine and basic molecular biology. He has been in clinical practice in Ithaca, NY since 2004. In January 2007, he took a two-year appointment as Chair of the Department of Medicine at Ithaca's Cayuga Medical Center, and was President of the Medical Staff in 2009. In addition to several committee roles at the Medical Center, Dr. Law has served on the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee at Cornell University from 1995 to 2000, and has been on the University's Health Careers Program Advisory Board since 1996. Since 2009 he has been the Cayuga Medical Center medical staff program coordinator for the active affiliation with Weill Cornell Medical College
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