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Fw: Children's Environmental health newsletter - May 2013

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      Thanks With regards, Dr. Prasad Pore Pune Mobile No. 9921073540 ... From: heca To: HECANET@LISTSERV.WHO.INT Sent: Thursday, 16 May 2013,
    Message 1 of 1 , May 17, 2013
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      With regards,

      Dr. Prasad Pore
      Mobile No. 9921073540

      ----- Forwarded Message -----
      From: heca <heca@...>
      To: HECANET@...
      Sent: Thursday, 16 May 2013, 16:04
      Subject: Children's Environmental health newsletter - May 2013

      You're receiving this newsletter because you have subscribed to the Healthy Environments for Children Alliance
      Children’s Environmental Health International Initiatives
      This is an international mailing list provided by WHO and UNEP
      dedicated to promoting healthy environments for children
      May  2013
      Authors: WHO, UNICEF
      This Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) 2013 update presents country, regional and global estimates for the year 2011. Since the JMP 2012 update, which presented 2010 estimates, results of 230 surveys have been added to the JMP database, bringing the total number of surveys in the JMP database close to 1700. The global estimates have hardly changed. Drinking-water coverage in 2011 remains at 89% – which is 1% above the MDG drinking-water target. In 2011, 768 million people relied on unimproved drinking-water sources.
      Sanitation coverage in 2011 was 64%. The world remains off track to meet the MDG sanitation target of 75% and if current trends continue, it is set to miss the target by more than half a billion people. By the end of 2011, there were 2.5 billion people who still did not use an improved sanitation facility. The number of people practising open defecation decreased to a little over 1 billion, but this still represents 15% of the global population. (Taken from P.3 of report)
      The report covers the following chapters:
      Global sanitation trends 1990-2011
      Trends in open defecation 1990-2011
      Global drinking-water trends 1990-2011
      Towards a post-2015 development agenda
      The JMP method.
      Air Pollution
      This case–control study was conducted among a population in the Bhaktapur municipality, Nepal, to investigate the relationship of cookfuel type to acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) in young children. A total of 917 children (452 cases and 465 controls) were recruited into the study. Relative to use of electricity for cooking, ALRI was increased in association with any use of biomass stoves [odds ratio (OR) = 1.93; 95% CI: 1.24, 2.98], kerosene stoves (OR = 1.87; 95% CI: 1.24, 2.83), and gas stoves (OR = 1.62; 95% CI: 1.05, 2.50). Use of wood, kerosene, or coal heating was also associated with ALRI (OR = 1.45; 95% CI: 0.97, 2.14), compared with no heating or electricity or gas heating. Population-attributable fractions for ALRI were 18.0% (95% CI: 8.1, 26.9%) and 18.7% (95% CI: 8.4%–27.8%), for biomass and kerosene stoves, respectively. The authors concluded that the study supports previous reports indicating that use of biomass as a household fuel is a risk factor for ALRI, and provides new evidence that use of kerosene for cooking may also be a risk factor for ALRI in young children.
      Environmental Health Perspectives
      Elevated levels of the pesticide DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) have been positively associated with blood pressure and hypertension in studies among adults. Accumulating epidemiologic and toxicologic evidence suggests that hypertension during adulthood may also be affected by earlier life and possibly the prenatal environment. The authors assessed whether prenatal exposure to the pesticide DDT increases risk of adult hypertension. They found that prenatal p,p´-DDT exposure was associated with hypertension [adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) = 3.6; 95% CI: 1.8, 7.2 and aHR = 2.5; 95% CI: 1.2, 5.3 for middle and high tertiles of p,p´-DDT relative to the lowest tertile, respectively]. These associations between p,p´-DDT and hypertension were robust to adjustment for independent hypertension risk factors as well as sensitivity analyses. The findings suggest that the association between DDT exposure and hypertension may have its origins early in development.
      Environmental Health
      Global Change
      Global monitoring of intervention coverage is a cornerstone of international efforts to improve reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health. In this review, the authors examine the process and implications of selecting a core set of coverage indicators for global monitoring, using as examples the processes used by the Countdown to 2015 for Maternal, Newborn and Child Survival and the Commission on Accountability for Women's and Children's Health. They describe how the generation of data for global monitoring involves five iterative steps: development of standard indicator definitions and measurement approaches to ensure comparability across countries; collection of high-quality data at the country level; compilation of country data at the global level; organization of global databases; and rounds of data quality checking.
      PLoS Medicine
      Water and Sanitation
      Pit latrines are one of the most common human excreta disposal systems in low-income countries, and their use is on the rise as countries aim to meet the sanitation-related target of the Millennium Development Goals. There is concern that discharges of chemical and microbial contaminants from pit latrines to groundwater may negatively affect human health. The goals of this review were to a) calculate global pit latrine coverage, b) systematically review empirical studies of the impacts of pit latrines on groundwater quality, c) evaluate latrine siting standards, and d) identify knowledge gaps regarding the potential for and consequences of groundwater contamination by latrines. The authors estimated that approximately 1.77 billion people use pit latrines as their primary means of sanitation. Studies of pit latrines and groundwater are limited and have generally focused on only a few indicator contaminants. The authors concluded that in order to improve environmental and human health, future research should examine a larger set of contextual variables, improve measurement approaches, and develop better criteria for siting pit latrines.
      Environmental Health Perspectives
      Additional Publications
      The ordinary and extraordinary meetings of the conferences of the parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions were held back-to-back during a two-week period from 28 April to 10 May 2013 in Geneva, Switzerland. The objective of holding the meetings in a coordinated manner was to strengthen the implementation of the three conventions at the national, regional and global levels, promote coherent policy guidance and enhance efficiency in the provision of support to parties. 
      The following is taken from the UNEP News Centre:
      Chemicals contribute many advantages to today's world; however their use can also pose risks to human health and the environment. To reduce this harmful global impact, three conventions have been established that regulate chemicals and hazardous waste at a global level:
      Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal regulates the export/import of hazardous waste and waste containing hazardous chemicals. The Convention was adopted in 1989 and entered into force in 1992. It currently has 180 Parties.
      Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade currently regulates information about the export/import of 47 hazardous chemicals listed in the Convention's Annex III, 33 of which are pesticides (including 4 severely hazardous pesticide formulations) and 14 of which are industrial chemicals. The Convention was adopted in 1998 and entered into force in 2004. It currently has 152 Parties.
      Unlike the Stockholm Convention, the Rotterdam Convention does not ban or restrict trade in chemicals or pesticide formulations, but serves to strengthen protection of human health and the environment by expanding the exchange of critical safety information between exporting and importing States.
      Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants currently regulates 23 toxic substances that are persistent, travel long distances, bioaccumulate in organisms and are toxic. The Convention was adopted in 2001 and entered into force in 2004. It currently has 179 Parties.
      Press Releases
      UNEP and FAO team up to promote synergies between the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions in two-week chemicals and waste meeting. UNEP (13/5/13)
      Some 2.4 billion people – one-third of the world’s population – will remain without access to improved sanitation in 2015, according to a joint WHO/UNICEF report. WHO (13/5/13)
      On 14-15 May, UNICEF welcomes 400 participants from over 40 countries to the International Conference Against Child Malnutrition in Paris. The aim of this mobilizing conference is to make malnutrition a global priority and put it at the heart of the post-2015 development agenda. UNICEF (8/5/13)
      Every year, hundreds of millions of patients around the world are affected by health care-associated infections. More than half of these infections could be prevented by caregivers properly cleaning their hands at key moments in patient care. WHO (3/5/13)
      In the Media
      Four intestinal bugs are responsible for nearly half of all cases of childhood diarrhea, which kills about 800,000 children around the world each year. Washington Post (14/5/13)
      Over 15 million Ugandans do not have access to clean water and sanitation. Water is a key resource for health. A major proportion of world’s illness and death from infectious disease could be eliminated if all drinking, domestic and recreational water was free of potential chemical and biological hazards. Kampala New Vision (11/5/13)
      Exposure to air pollution raises the risk of resistance to insulin, a typical warning sign of diabetes, according to a study of almost 400 German children. Bloomberg News (10/5/13)
      Environmental Health News is launching a new way for you to keep track of news from around the world related to children’s health. Environmental Health News (9/5/13)
      Flame retardants in first breast milk may have a small effect on mental development of toddlers, reports a new study from Spain. In tests measuring the toddlers' cognitive and motor skills, scores dropped 2 points for each 10-fold increase in total PBDEs in their mothers' milk. Environmental Health News (9/5/13)
      More than 1 million babies die the day they are born every year, and the 14 countries with the highest rates of first-day deaths are all in Africa, according to a new report. Associated Press (8/5/13)
      U.S. health regulators are warning doctors and women of child-bearing age that half-a-dozen medications used to treat migraine headaches can decrease children's intelligence if taken while their mothers are pregnant. San Francisco Chronicle (7/5/13)
      Cobalt in plastic building blocks and baby bibs. Ethylene glycol in dolls. Methyl ethyl ketone in clothing. Antimony in high chairs and booster seats. Parabens in baby wipes. D4 in baby creams. An Environmental Health News analysis of thousands of reports from America’s largest companies shows that toys and other children’s products contain low levels of dozens of industrial chemicals, including some unexpected ingredients that will surprise a public concerned about exposure. Environmental Health News (6/5/13)
      Methyl ethyl ketone, an industrial solvent, was reported by companies in the plastics, surface coatings and textiles of 469 children's products, including boots, hats, trousers and arts and crafts, among dozens of others. Environmental Health News (6/5/13)
      Two chemicals that may act like estrogen – nonylphenol and octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane, known as D4 – were reported in pigments, solvents or stabilizers in synthetic textiles and plastics used in children's products. Environmental Health News (6/5/13)
      Eight different phthalates, the controversial, hormone-disrupting chemicals used to make vinyl and fragrances, showed up in more than 770 children's products. Environmental Health News (6/5/13)
      Nearly 260,000 people died during the famine that hit Somalia from 2010 to 2012, a study shows. Half of them were children under the age of five. BBC (3/5/13)
      Even non-smokers can experience health hazards from cigarette smoke, and the latest study suggests the dangers may depend on your gender. Time Magazine (3/5/13)
      Research shows that infants and toddlers are not merely in closer contact with many indoor pollutants but also more sensitive to them. Yet U.S. environmental health standards in child care settings still lag behind those of schools, where children are less susceptible to environmental exposures. Environmental Health Perspectives (2/5/13)
      More than 5,000 products, including clothing, toys and bedding, contain toxic chemicals that could be dangerous for children’s health, yet stores still stock them and consumers know little about their content, an advocacy group reported this week. McClatchy Newspapers (1/5/13)
      E Waste - Short Online Survey due June 1- see below.
      As a result of international commitments, such as the Busan Pledge for Action on Children’ Environmental Health (Busan, 2009) and the Libreville Declaration (that came out of the 1st Inter-Ministerial Conference on Health and Environment in Africa), the World Health Organization (WHO) was urged to work on the emerging issue of electronic waste and specifically its impact on the health and development of children.
      Following the launch of a new initiative in WHO addressing electronic waste and child health, the Solving the E-Waste Problem (StEP) Initiative hosted by the United Nations University (UNU) and WHO are carrying out an on-line survey with a wider body of experts in order to identify existing knowledge and therefore key stakeholders working on e-waste and child health that could contribute to and benefit from the new initiative’s findings.
      You are invited to contribute to this initiative by responding to a short on-line survey (link below), by 01 June 2013,
      The findings will be discussed in an upcoming WHO closed working meeting with experts on e-waste and child health (June 2013), will be summarized in the meeting report as well as a subsequent peer-reviewed article on e-waste and health. Please include your name, affiliation and email address in the survey if you would like to receive the results of this consultation.
      For any technical questions please contact SCYCLE-surveys@...
      July 3rd – 5th 2013. Tel Aviv, Israel
      July 28th – August 2nd 2013, Edinburgh, Scotland
      September 24th – 27th 2013. Honolulu, Hawaii, United States of America
      November 20th -22nd 2013. Jerusalem, Israel
      November 25th – 29th 2013. Brisbane. Australia
      December 4th – 7th 2013. Qatar
      Have news for us?
      If you would like to submit information to future HECANET issues, email us at heca@... with the subject line "INFORMATION FOR HECANET".
      Collated and distributed with the cooperation of the

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