As the owner and Principal Industrial Hygienist at Aura, Mona assists clients in solving complex industrial hygiene and environmental health problems. Utilizing her varied experience in industry, education, and environmental public health, she is able to apply my technical skills and different perspectives to find viable and practical options for clients who may be struggling with assessment or mitigation of occupational and environmental exposures. As someone who has experience in knowledge translation and risk communication, she also assists clients with stakeholder engagement activities particularly in controversial environments.
She managed and conducted numerous microbial indoor air quality investigations involving commercial and residential buildings, schools, and recreational facilities. She was designated as an expert witness in several litigation cases, with most cases reaching settlement before deposition or trial testimony was necessary. However, she was deposed multiple times and has had trial testimony experience in cases involving mould and legionella exposures. Currently, she is the Chapter Director of the Indoor Air Quality Association Vancouver Chapter.
Sourcing Odours in Indoor Air Quality Investigations
Often indoor air quality issues are brought to light because someone smells something or suspects that an odour may be causing their symptoms or discomfort. This presentation provides strategies for sourcing indoor air quality complaints when odour is implicated as the initial problem. Various strategies will be discussed including interviews with occupants, review of building history, review of ventilation systems, tracing air in buildings, materials testing, air sampling, and even subjective odour testing. Case studies involving utilization of several of these strategies will be discussed to illustrate how they can be utilized in conducting indoor air quality investigations.
Review of the current peer-reviewed and grey literature on mould assessment techniques
Excessive dampness and mould growth on building material surfaces and contents can pose health risks and should not be tolerated in indoor environments. A mould assessment determines if mould is present, but does not determine or estimate mould exposure. Health-based exposure limits for indoor mould in residential environments have not been established; inspecting for visible and hidden mould, removing mould where present, and repairing and controlling sources of excessive moisture is the best approach to controlling health risks. Visual inspection is recommended as the primary tool for assessing indoor moisture and mould. Mould sampling is recommended only when the results of a visual inspection are ambiguous or when more detailed information is necessary. Awareness and ongoing prevention activities for mould and moisture are important strategies for building occupants and homeowners. – See more at: http://www.ncceh.ca/documents/guide/mould-assessment-recommendations-revised#sthash.6GoLnVvN.dpuf
Review of the current peer-reviewed and grey literature on mould remediation
Excessive dampness and mould growth on building material surfaces and contents can pose health risks and should not be tolerated in indoor environments. The main goal of remediation is to reduce the risk of exposure to mould and to prevent structural damage; the underlying cause of dampness must be identified and eliminated or mould will reappear. Effective mould remediation requires the physical removal of mould growth and spores; even dead mould can cause negative health effects. Strategies must be employed to reduce risk to workers and occupants during remediation. Ongoing prevention is the most important concept in mould intervention; keep all surfaces in the home as clean and dry as possible to prevent mould from growing. – See more at: http://www.ncceh.ca/documents/guide/mould-remediation-recommendations-revised#sthash.reF5LM8E.dpuf
A Mould Investigation Toolkit: Tools for Inspection, Evaluation, and Remediation
This toolkit provides investigators with some of the tools for evaluating indoor environments for mould (and other microorganisms), providing information, conducting walkthrough investigations, and understanding laboratory and consultant reports that they may be asked to review. This toolkit is meant to be a living document as new information becomes available and new tools are discovered or created. It is the NCCEH’s intention to enlist the help of PHIs, EHOs, and content experts to keep this toolkit current and useful. The toolkit consists of the following: Toolkit overview Sample inspection checklists and forms Overview of microbial sampling methods Overview of typical fungi Interpretation of microbial laboratory reports Reviewing microbial investigation reports – See more at: http://www.ncceh.ca/documents/guide/ncceh-mould-investigation-toolkit#sthash.hvv3n4Lx.dpuf