WHO report: Much disease preventable

June 17, 2006

A World Health Organization report blames almost one-quarter of disease around the world on environmental factors.

The percentage is believed to be higher for children, as much as 33 percent.

"The report issued today is a major contribution to ongoing efforts to better define the links between environment and health," said Dr. Anders Nordström, the agency's acting director general. "We have always known that the environment influences health very profoundly, but these estimates are the best to date."

Dr. Maria Neira, director of the department of public health and the environment, said the report provides a "hit list" of environmental problems.

The report said 94 percent of cases of diarrhea globally are caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation and hygiene. It blames 41 percent of lower respiratory infections on air pollution indoors and out.

Malaria is possibly the biggest killer in history. The report suggests 42 percent of cases could be prevented with better housing design and water supply.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Tracking project reveals roaming tiger sharks

Related Stories

Tracking project reveals roaming tiger sharks

July 31, 2015

THE sight of a shark's dorsal fin sticking out of the water usually strikes fear into the hearts of swimmers but for a group of WA researchers every time a tagged tiger shark's (Galeocerdo cuvier) dorsal fin stuck out of ...

An all-natural sunscreen derived from algae

July 29, 2015

For consumers searching for just the right sunblock this summer, the options can be overwhelming. But scientists are now turning to the natural sunscreen of algae—which is also found in fish slime—to make a novel kind ...

Recommended for you

A cataclysmic event of a certain age

July 27, 2015

At the end of the Pleistocene period, approximately 12,800 years ago—give or take a few centuries—a cosmic impact triggered an abrupt cooling episode that earth scientists refer to as the Younger Dryas.

New blow for 'supersymmetry' physics theory

July 27, 2015

In a new blow for the futuristic "supersymmetry" theory of the universe's basic anatomy, experts reported fresh evidence Monday of subatomic activity consistent with the mainstream Standard Model of particle physics.

Dense star clusters shown to be binary black hole factories

July 29, 2015

The coalescence of two black holes—a very violent and exotic event—is one of the most sought-after observations of modern astronomy. But, as these mergers emit no light of any kind, finding such elusive events has been ...

Image: Hubble sees a dying star's final moments

July 31, 2015

A dying star's final moments are captured in this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. The death throes of this star may only last mere moments on a cosmological timescale, but this star's demise is still quite ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.