212408 A War Legacy Priority: Addressing the impact of Agent Orange on the health and lives of the people of Viet Nam

Monday, November 9, 2009: 4:30 PM

Susan Hammond , War Legacy Project, Chester, VT
Trude Bennett, PhD , Maternal and Child Health, UNC Shcool of Public Health, Chapel Hill, NC
One of the most controversial and damaging war legacies of the American military campaign in Vietnam is the long term consequences of the use of Agent Orange/dioxin on the health of the population in the affected areas. Over the past decade, efforts have been mobilized by international and Vietnamese partners, including NGOs, funders and government to government projects, to begin to address the long term consequences of the impact of Agent Orange on the environment, lives and health of the Vietnamese people. While efforts and resources to develop and deliver enhanced health and social services to people with disabilities, particularly disabilities linked to exposure to dioxin, have proliferated, the question of the effectiveness and impact of those services remain unaddressed. One of the pressing impact questions is how comprehensively are these programs addressing the needs of people with disabilities? A related question is whether these efforts and resources are reaching the right targets? For instance, are the resources and services reaching those people with disabilities who are not in the urban areas? The good news of more resources begs the question of how can the proliferation of projects and funding be channeled strategically into the most effective long term program planning and best outcomes for people with disabilities and their families and communities. This discussion will address these questions, within the context of reviewing what is currently being done to address the impact of Agent Orange on the people of Vietnam, what needs to be done in the next decade, and what more needs to be learned to enable the Vietnamese and American partners the work effectively to mitigate the impacts of Agent Orange in Viet Nam.

Learning Objectives:
Describe the effectiveness of current programs addressing Agent Orange exposure in disabled populations. Describe how future projects can best address the needs of those impacted by Agent Orange exposure in Vietnam.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been working on and researching the long term health and environmental impacts of the use of Agent Orange for more than a decade. I have presented information about the impacts of Agent Orange/Dioxin at prior APHA and other academic conferences as well as at universities throughout the US.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.