Issue No. 9 [2008]
PAHO, Catalyst for Health in the Americas. Health: Our Most Basic Asset.
April 7, 2008

OUR Planet, OUR Health, OUR Future
They are in OUR Hands

Speech from the Director
Washington, D.C. PAHO HQ.
April 7, 2008.
"We can all contribute to protect our planet and to protect our health."

"Climate change impacts on health both directly - for example through heat waves, floods and storms and other extreme weather events, but also indirectly, through effects on infectious disease, on water availability, and on agricultural production. These are not minor issues. Diseases that are sensitive to climate include some of our biggest killers as malaria, diarrhea, and also including risk conditions as it is under nutrition, the single largest contributor to the global burden of disease."

The Director launch the Green PAHO Initiative looking at a comprehensive way to "green" our "working environment" and thus continue our goal of Building Healthy Environments.

"Our work has evolved, from describing the risks of climate change to health, to capacity building with health practitioners, to guidance on how to assess risks and plan protection, to proposing practical guidance on protecting health from specific climate risks."

"...We need a comprehensive Framework for Action to properly address climate change and its impact on health: addressing Evidence, implementing Adaptation mechanisms in the health sector, and providing Leadership..."

Director's Speech »
Discurso de la Directora »
Slides show from the Director's speech »

Webcast from Washington, D.C., PAHO HQ.
World Health Day 2008 ceremony


World Health Day at WHO

Geneva. April 7, 2008.

Climate change will erode foundations of health. WHO Director-General.
The impact of climate change on human health. Statement by WHO Director-General Dr Margaret Chan.

El cambio climático socavará los cimientos de la salud. Directora General de la OMS.
El cambio climático es una amenaza muy directa para la salud. Declaración de la Directora General de la OMS.

Le changement climatique va ébranler les fondements de la santé. Le Directeur général de l’OMS.
Le changement climatique met en péril la santé. Déclaration du Directeur-général de l'OMS.


PAHO Walk for Health 2008

Washington, D.C. April 5, 2008.

Successful Walk for Health Event at PAHO HQ.

More than 150 staff members and their families joined this saturday walking for health to celebrate World Health Day 2008.

See the pictures from the Walk: Walk for Health 2008 [.ppt]


Climate Change
a Challenge to Human Species

Interview with Mirta Roses*
Tierramérica.- Montevideo, Apr 7 (IPS)

"World Health Day, celebrated Apr. 7, is a good opportunity to "call attention to the fact that the survival of humanity is at stake" because of climate change, according to Mirta Roses, director of the Pan-American Health Organization."

Government officials and local communities must "take on whatever responsibility that they can in order to contribute to a more stable environment," reduce the vulnerability of populations in high-risk zones and in poverty, such as indigenous communities, said the Argentine surgeon, an expert in infectious diseases, in a telephone interview from Washington DC with Tierramérica.

English: Climate Change a Challenge to Human Species
Español: Cambio climático desafía a la especie humana
Português: Mudança climática desafia a espécie humana


El ser humano tiene que volver a respetar a la Pachamama
Entrevista realizada a la Dra. Mirta Roses Periago, Directora de la OPS.
Argentina. La Voz del Interior. Marzo 24 2008.
"... el cambio climático ya empezó a mostrar su impacto negativo sobre la salud, tenemos retos actuales con la salud de nuestros países con la expansión de enfermedades como la fiebre amarilla y el dengue, es imperioso que el hombre recuerde que su vida está unida a la del planeta."
Entrevista »


PAHO Latest Press Releases
more Press Releases ...
más Comunicados de Prensa ...

Protecting Health from Climate Change
April 7, 2008.

Climate change is already affecting human health, and it's time to do something about it.

Proteger la salud frente al cambio climático
Los cambios climáticos ya están afectando a la salud humana, es hora de que hagamos algo.


Message from PAHO Director
Un mensaje de la Directora de la OPS, la Dra. Mirta Roses Periago

The adverse health impacts of climate change can be both direct and indirect. Direct effects result from from climatic extremes such as thermal stress and weather disasters. Indirect effects result from climatic influences on vector-borne disease transmission, water- and food-borne disease transmission, and food and water security. Indirect effects also include the consequences of social and economic dislocation, including population displacement. In the Americas, the major areas of concern are increases in extreme weather events, changes in food supply and nutritional security, changes in water supply, changes in vector-borne disease range and distribution, and rising sea levels. Due to rapid urbanization in the Americas, urban health issues will become increasingly important.


World Health Day 2008 Highlights Protection of Health from Effects of Climate Change
[PAHO Press Release]

La OPS frente al impacto del cambio climático
[Nota de Prensa de la OPS]



Speeches at PAHO Headquarters ceremony

- Admiral Joxel Garcia, Assistant Secretary for Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Speech: Climate change is a serious challenge, the scale and scope of which will require a global response

- Ms. Kristie Ebi, Lead Author of the Human Health Chapter of the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC), 4th Assessment Report Climate Science and Health Effects. Presentation: *(Will be available soon)

- Mr. Hardy Spoehr, Executive Director, Papa Ola Lokahi, Hawaii. Presentation: Climate Change and its Health Effects on Indigenous Populations in Hawaii

- Mr. John Scott, Coordinator Subcommittee on Health, American Indian and Alaska Native Climate Change Working Group. Speech: Health effects of Climate Change on American and Alaskan Native Populations *(Will be available soon)

- Dr. Luiz A. Galvão, Area Manager, Sustainable Development and Environmental Health. Speech: Conclusion, next steps to protect health from climate.



See also: USA National Public Health Week

April 7-13, 2008

CLIMATE CHANGE: Our Health in the Balance

For the last five years PAHO and the American Public Health Association (APHA) have been working on plan the National Public Health Week from Apr 7-13, along with PAHO commitment to OAS to declare this week the Public Health Week of the Americas





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