Geohealth stands for global, environmental and occupational health and is the study of geography’s effect on public health. Geohealth is becoming an increasingly popular field of study and choice of career as the effects climate change start to interfere with our everyday lives.
Why should we care about Geohealth?
Many healthcare professionals are now coming out and saying how over recent years they’ve noticed that environmental exposures to toxins are becoming more and more frequent.  Chris McEntee, reflects on his professional career in healthcare as a nurse and how he has witnessed many different examples, with many different patients, experiencing environmental exposures to toxic materials that contributed to various health issues. According to McEntee, “... That’s why I was so pleased to be invited to participate in a congressional briefing hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) … Which illustrated the critical role Earth science research plays in understanding the health impacts toxic chemicals and other substances can have, and how we can protect public health.” McEntee further reflects, “... We have an obligation to protect public health and safety, and to see that a strong investment in geoscience and health science is a critical part of that obligation.”
Global environmental health crisis
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that the US and Canada partnered to invest $20.9 million in the global environmental health crisis we’re facing today. NIH reports that according to the World Health Organization (WHO), “Pesticide use, household and outdoor air pollution, mining hazards and other occupational and environmental risk factors cause almost a quarter of the world's deaths…” which then costs the global economy billions of dollars, according to the International Labour Organization. The $20.9 million investment funds the establishment of seven research and training centers, called Global Environmental and Occupational Health (GEOHealth) Hubs. These “hubs” serve the low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) of: Suriname, Thailand, India, Bangladesh, Peru, Ethiopia and Ghana because they’re facing the burden of the crisis.
There are many platforms and resources available on the internet to help manage the health effects of climate change.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health’s official website provides the basics of environmental health in the state of Pennsylvania such as a general overview of environmental health, how to report environmental concerns and how the department handles environmental health concerns. Environmental health examines how different environments affect a person’s well-being. According to the text, “Department of Health (DOH) environmental health staff members work closely with federal, state, county, and local officials, and the public on a regular basis to help address environmental health issues and concerns.” Although this text did not provide innovative research on GeoHealth it is extremely useful because it provides a step-by-step list of how to report environmental health concerns which read as follows: “visit your healthcare provider or doctor, have environmental test results available, be prepared to speak about your family’s current health and health history, and most importantly, the more specific you can be, the better we can serve you.”
The GeoHEALTH platform is an excellent resource provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and is a U.S. Government information system. This platform’s main focuses are better lanning, enhanced situational awareness, faster response and complete recovery. According to the main information page on the platform, the main goal is to be the main source of information, “... For enhanced situational awareness, assessment, and management of resources for planning, response to natural, man-made or pandemic events.” This platform is useful because it provides information about what kinds of official platforms are available on the internet to obtain important information about the rising concerns of GeoHealth in today’s world. It’s important to note that State and Local health departments and emergency management agencies may apply also for accounts to the platform.
Other closely related articles in this wiki include:
- McEntee, C. (2015, November 12). Rise of GeoHealth - From The Prow. Retrieved September 8, 2016, from https://fromtheprow.agu.org/rise-of-geohealth/
Relevant online sources to this wiki article include:
- The home page of Penn State Brandywine, the home of the EARTH 100 wiki article writers!
- Health and the Human Body - one of the sites I want you to explore to look for supporting articles about Health and the Human Body.
- You should also search the websites for "Disease" and "Human Body" and the National Geographic Education Encyclopedia.