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|Title: ||Poverty, climate change and health in pacific island countries|
|Authors: ||Russell, Lesley|
Menzies Centre for Health Policy
|Issue Date: ||Apr-2011|
|Publisher: ||Menzies Centre for Health Policy|
|Abstract: ||This is an updated version of a paper previously released in April 2009 and prepared during my tenure at the University of Sydney.1
The impact of the environment on health and the health consequences of global warming are issues that have become increasingly prominent in political and policy debates in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. They play out with even greater economic and social consequences in the developing countries of the Pacific Ocean, where fragile environments, failing economies, poor population health and a shortage of needed workforce skills mean there are fewer resources to prevent and manage them.
This is a geo-political region where Australia, New Zealand and the United States have major interests - territorial responsibilities, trade and security - reinforced by strong cultural ties as a consequence of the large number of Pacific Islanders now resident in all three countries. Australia, New Zealand and the United States are important sources of aid and technical support to these countries. Their leadership, cooperation and resources will be essential in the international effort to improve and sustain the environment and health status in Pacific Island nations and territories.
Even a brief survey of the literature shows that there is a plethora of initiatives in Pacific Island countries that are operated and funded by a wide range of government and non-government organizations and aimed at addressing environmental and health problems and the underlying issues such as poverty and governance that aggravate these problems and hinder their solution. However the volume of reports from these organizations is not matched by up-to-date data that facilitate planning and the measurement and evaluation of results. What data there are highlight that there is much more work to be done, and that timelines for action are increasingly short.
This paper does not aim to present policies and strategies that might be adopted by Australia, New Zealand and the United States, separately and together, to address the environmental and health problems that confront Pacific Island countries. Rather, its purpose is to summarize the underlying issues and the available data. As such, it is hoped that this paper can serve as a useful resource in the course of the development of the needed policies and strategies, and will help generate informed discussion and debate towards these goals.|
|Department/Unit/Centre: ||Menzies Centre for Health Policy|
|Type of Work: ||Technical Report|
|Appears in Collections:||Reports - Menzies Centre for Health Policy|
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|lrpacificislands2011.pdf||1.58 MB||Adobe PDF|
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