Evaluation and further development of EASE model 2.0

K. S. Creely, J. Tickner, A. J. Soutar, G. W. Hughson, D. E. Pryde, N. D. Warren, R. Rae, C. Money, A. Phillips, J. W. Cherrie

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    40 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    EASE (Estimation and Assessment of Substance Exposure) is a general model that may be used to predict workplace exposure to a wide range of substances hazardous to health. First developed in the early 1990s, it is now in its second Windows version. This paper provides a critical assessment of the utility and performance of the EASE model, and on the basis of this review, recommendations for the structure of a revised model are outlined. Twenty-seven stakeholders were interviewed about their previous use of EASE, perceived advantages and limitations of the model and suggestions for improvement. A subset of stakeholders was contacted on a second occasion to determine their views on the preferred outputs for an ideal exposure assessment model. Overall, stakeholders felt that the model should be updated to provide more accurate and precise exposure assessments. However, users also expressed the view that the simplicity and usability of the software model should not be compromised. Six studies investigating the validity of the inhalation exposure assessment section of EASE were identified. These showed that the model generally either predicted close to the measured exposures or overestimated exposure; though performance was highly variable. Two studies investigated the validity of the dermal exposure assessment and found that EASE produced considerable overestimates of actual dermal exposure (the amount of a substance that actually lands on the skin). A conceptual model of exposure was developed to investigate whether the structure of the EASE model is appropriate. Although EASE has a number of characteristics that describe exposure, it is a greatly simplified model and does not include all the important exposure determinants. More importantly, EASE can produce estimates of exposure that are ambiguous or incomplete. Our conceptual model may provide a rational basis for developing an improved version of EASE but further consultation is needed to decide the purpose and intended use of any successor to EASE.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)135-145
    Number of pages11
    JournalAnnals of Occupational Hygiene
    Volume49
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005

    Keywords

    • Chemical
    • EASE
    • Exposure assessment
    • Model

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
    • Health Professions(all)

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