WHO says ready to help Japan in nuclear crisis

Mar 15, 2011

The World Health Organization said Tuesday it was ready to help Japan, which is grappling with a nuclear emergency after some reactors were damaged by last week's deadly earthquake.

"We have expressed our availability to participate in a mission, to offer necessary assistance, if it is required," said Maria Neira, the UN health agency's director of public health and environment.

"We are ready," she added.

Radiation near a quake-hit reached levels harmful to , Japan's government said after two explosions and a fire at the crippled facility Tuesday.

Four of the six reactors at the Fukushima No.1 plant, 250 kilometres (155 miles) northeast of Tokyo, have now overheated and sparked explosions since Friday's massive earthquake and tsunami knocked out cooling systems.

The WHO assessed that Japanese authorities have acted appropriately in imposing exclusion zones around the plant.

"The actions proposed by the government of Japan are in line with the existing reommendations based on public health expertise," said the UN health agency.

However, Neira warned: "The situation is evolving very quickly, the recommendations will have to be adapted with the situation as it evolves.

"For the time being, with the core information that is available with the prevailing situation, the type of radioactivity that is in the area, the measures of evacuating, the measures of requesting people to stay indoors, the measures to preposition and eventually distribute , those are the ones that the public health community is recommending," she said.

Neira also said that the WHO was not making any specific recommendation on diet at the moment, as "the produce that will be at risk will be the produce that are growing in the contaminated areas."

"Our understanding is that there are no problems at the moment (from what) they've collected from the area, because it's totally innundated."

Explore further: Health care organizations see value of telemedicine

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Germany shuts down seven reactors

Mar 15, 2011

Germany announced Tuesday the temporary shutdown of the oldest seven of its 17 nuclear reactors pending a safety review in light of Japan's atomic emergency.

US West Coast: on frontline from nuclear cloud?

Mar 14, 2011

California is closely watching the crisis at a Japanese nuclear plant, but officials downplayed the threat that a radioactive cloud blown across the Pacific could pose for the US West Coast.

Japan reels as second blast rocks nuclear plant

Mar 14, 2011

A new explosion at a stricken nuclear power plant hit Japan Monday as it raced to avert a reactor meltdown after a quake-tsunami disaster that is feared to have killed more than 10,000 people.

Fears of health risks rise amid Japan crisis

Mar 15, 2011

(AP) -- Fears about health risks rose dramatically in Japan Tuesday with news of a greater radiation release and renewed warnings to remaining residents within 20 miles to stay indoors.

Recommended for you

Health care organizations see value of telemedicine

12 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Health care organizations are developing and implementing telemedicine programs, although many have yet to receive reimbursement, according to a report published by Foley & Lardner.

Before you go... are you in denial about death?

19 hours ago

For most of us, death conjures up strong feelings. We project all kinds of fears onto it. We worry about it, dismiss it, laugh it off, push it aside or don't think about it at all. Until we have to. Of course, ...

User comments : 0

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.