International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

Sustainable Health Risk Management and the Role of Cross-Disciplinary Professionals in Developing Countries: Mexican Experience

Document Type

Article

Abstract

The paper argues health risk management in Developing Countries cannot be sustainable unless it is conceived, planned, implemented and maintained by community-led multi-stakeholder groups using an integrated capacity building process with five components: (1) education and awareness raising; (2) strengthening information resources and decision making; (3) strengthening regulations and compliance; (4) improving basic sanitation infrastructure; and (5) stimulating the market for support products and services for health and environment sectors. Occupational and environmental health professionals with cross-disciplinary understanding are uniquely qualified to build much-needed bridges between stakeholders, risk science and policy. They should adopt a cost-effective mentality, adapting models/methods used in developed countries to developing country contexts, negotiating political obstacles and understanding cultural differences in risk sources, exposures and perceptions. Stakeholders - health professionals, community representatives, officials, NGOs/advocacy groups, industries, and providers of products/services - collaborate to detect needs, mobilize resources, design, develop, implement, consolidate and maintain interventions to priority problems. Field experience in Mexico supports the argument. This sustainability process is adaptable to other keystone development sectors like soil and water resources stewardship, biodiversity conservation, agriculture and energy.

Publication Title

Environment, Development and Sustainability

Publication Date

9-17-2001

Volume

3

Issue

1

First Page

61

Last Page

81

ISSN

1387-585X

DOI

10.1023/A:1011414307483

Keywords

capacity building, health risk, science and policy, sustainable development

Disciplines

Social and Behavioral Sciences | Sociology

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