Children's environmental health

Children’s health and the environment: A global perspective

A resource manual for the health sector

Published in 2005

The World Health Organization is pleased to announce the release of the first Handbook on "Children's Health and the Environment: A Global Perspective."

This ground-breaking manual incorporates both developing and industrialized country outlooks to give a comprehensive international account of how environmental quality can influence the health and development of children from conception through adolescence.

Geared specifically for public health specialists, the health care provider and decision maker and to all those who have a stake in minimizing adverse environmental impacts on children's health and development, the resource manual provides background information on an array of illnesses caused, triggered or exacerbated by environmental hazards. The manual illustrates how children are uniquely and particularly vulnerable to environmental threats. It outlines exposure routes, signs and symptoms, basic treatments and prevention, as well as providing ample resources for consultation. Furthermore, it presents interesting case studies, referenced throughout the book, to give concrete and tangible examples of environmental illnesses, with a particular focus on children in developing countries.

Themes include:

  • How and when does exposure occur: illustrating both in which settings and at what ages children are most vulnerable to a given risk
  • Specific environmental threats: water and air quality, sanitation and hygiene, poisonings and envenomings, and more
  • Pediatric environmental history taking
  • How to take action

The Resource Manual is available in English and can be accessible on-line on this web site.

Contact: Children's Environmental Health team at: childrensenvhealth@who.int

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