Saturday, July 11, 2009

National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has recently launched a new website: the National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network.
Environmental public health tracking is a type of surveillance. It is a way of incorporating data for analysis and reporting. CDC's National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network is a website that brings together data concerning some health and environmental problems. The goal of this network is to provide information to help improve where we live, work, and play. The Tracking Network is part of CDC's National Environmental Public Tracking Program.
The Tracking Network provides information about the following types of data:
  • Health effect data: Data about health conditions and diseases, such as asthma and birth defects.
  • Environmental hazard data: Data about chemicals or other substances such as carbon monoxide and air pollution in the environment.
  • Exposure data: Data about the amount of a chemical in a person's body, such as lead in blood.
  • Other data: Data that helps us learn about relationships between exposures and health effects. For example, information about age, sex, race, and behavior or lifestyle choices that may help us understand why a person has a particular health problem.
Sounds quite interesting, doesn't it? I gained a renewed sense of appreciation regarding environmental health when I took courses for my Master of Public Health (MPH) degree. As residents on this earth, we have the responsibility to care for our planet and to ensure that resources are not wasted. Exposure to toxins can lead to detrimental health effects and we can control much of that type of exposure by doing our part.

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