About the Site Assessment Program

The Site Assessment Program works to prevent and reduce exposure to harmful chemicals in the air, soil, or water. Exposure means contact with a chemical by swallowing, breathing, or touching it. We work closely with partners including local, state, federal, and tribal agencies. With their help, we identify, evaluate, and prevent harmful exposures at sites across the state.

The program is supported through a cooperative agreement between the DOH Office of Environmental Public Health Sciences and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). This work was funded by ATSDR from the early 1990's to 2017, and renewed funding in 2020.

Since the early 1990's, the Site Assessment Program has assessed and responded to issues involving human exposure to harmful chemicals in the environment. We have:

Public Health Assessments

A public health assessment examines harmful chemicals, health outcomes, and community concerns at a site. The goal is to find out if exposure to those chemicals could be harmful. This assessment also lists actions that need to be taken to protect public health.

Health Consultations

A health consultation is a response to a specific health question or request for information about a potential environmental health issue at a site. We review available data or collect new data to inform our advice. A health consultation is focused on a specific exposure concern, like lead in drinking water or arsenic in soil. They are more limited than public health assessments, which review all ways that people might be exposed to any harmful chemical at the site.

Exposure Investigations

An exposure investigation helps us find out if people are being exposed to harmful chemicals at a site. We also find out if being exposed to these substances is harming peoples' health, and if we can stop or reduce that exposure. To do this, we collect and analyze information like environmental samples or biomedical test results.

Our Commitment

The Site Assessment Program is committed to serving, protecting, and promoting health and equity in Washington. We support communities affected by unsafe sites through community engagement, education, and site evaluation. As part of this, the program works to:

Contact Us

Phone: 360-236-3385 or 1-877-485-7316 (toll-free)

Email: Office Email