248382 A toxic tour of gaza: The impact of war and siege on human and environmental health

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 12:50 PM

Richard Grady, MD , Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, Seattle, WA
Gerri Haynes, Nurse Consultant , Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, Seattle, WA
Steven Gilbert, PhD, DABT , Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, Seattle, WA
Laura Hart, MD , Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, Seattle, WA
Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility (WPSR) medical delegates through sponsorship by Gaza Community Mental Health Programme (GCMHP) have made three trips to Gaza in the past two years. The purpose of the international partnership project between WPSR and GCMHP is to provide medical consultation to address human and environmental heath conditions due to border closure and siege in Gaza. Gaza has a population of 1.6 million living within 130 square miles and has the sixth highest population density in the world. Environmental health conditions in Gaza are reaching a critical level of toxicity unfit for healthy habitation. During WPSR January 2011 trip to Gaza several meetings were held with health officials and Dr. Eyad Sarraj, founder of the GCMHP to identify environmental factors prevalent in the community. Visual epidemiological methods of photography & video footage were utilized on guided tours of Gaza to highlight key features of "unhealthy community" of Gaza from an environmental health perspective. From this the partnership collaborated to produce a visual media presentation titled: ‘A Toxic Tour of Gaza'. Environmental containments prevalent in the region included: inadequate water infrastructure & treatment facilities for raw sewage, air pollution, use of leaded gasoline & daily use of generators during scheduled electrical outages. Lesson learned from the pilot study research will be disseminated through visual media and used to expand the collaborative partnerships between WPSR and GCMHP to the international environmental health community.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Environmental health sciences

Learning Objectives:
Identify the top environmental containments within the Gazan community due to the current border closures and siege.

Keywords: Environmental Exposures, War

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to give this presentation because I am a funded clinical investigator whose primary clinical research focuses on the effect of endocrine disrupting chemicals on the genitor-urinary system. I am on faculty at Seattle Children’s Hospital and the University of Washington and have been on two surgical missions to Gaza to provide care and teach.
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.