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CARPHA Conference on Climate Change, Risks to Human Health

GEORGETOWN, Guyana. March 24 2017. The Caribbean region, made up of small island nations, is one of the most vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change. In recent years, the region has experienced more frequent and intense storms and hurricanes, increases in mosquito-borne diseases, rises in sea level and prolonged periods of drought which pose a significant threat to human health.

Image of Dr. James Hospedales
Dr. James Hospedales

Implications of rising sea levels, impact of climate change on food security and health, as well as tobacco use among Caribbean youth, transgendered health, obesity, cardiovascular diseases and Zika are among the public health issues that will be addressed at the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) Annual Health Research Conference this year.

The Conference, now in its 62nd year, will be held at the Guyana Marriott Hotel. At a media conference held recently at the Cara Lodge Hotels, Executive Director, CARPHA, Dr. C. James Hospedales, said under the theme, “Climate Change, the Environment and Human Health”, the conference will feature an Expert Panel on Climate Change and Health. This meeting is expected to deliver a roadmap for how the Region should tackle issues related to climate and health.

Dr.Hospedales said the Conference is the major forum in the region where health researchers share and promote ways in which evidence can be used to improve people’s health and prevent death and suffering. He added that it also provides a training ground for young researchers.

In his opening remarks, Dr ShamdeoPersaud, Chief Medical Officer of Guyana, said his Ministry was fully supportive of the event as it will zero in on diseases that are of serious concern to the country. He said Guyana’s Tourism and Health project, executed by CARPHA, will also be launched during the week of the Conference.

The Agency will work with the Guyana Tourism Authority to include hoteliers and tourist operators into a system of surveillance, which will include training in food safety and regulatory mechanisms. Dr Persaud encouraged Guyana’s residents to register and take advantage of conference sessions.

Environmental health professionals, researchers, senior health officers and clinicians will be among regional and international delegates to attend the Health Research Conference. The Conference will host a series of events including a Grant Writing and Implementation Science Workshop, a Stakeholder Policy Dialogue, Training in Occupational Health and Safety, Training in Indoor Air Quality, and a seminar on Health Diplomacy for Caribbean Chief Medical Officers.

The Annual Health Research Conference takes place from April 27-29, 2017. Visit the conference website at http://conference.carpha.org/ for more information, special rates for students, sponsorship and exhibition opportunities.

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