The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) [external link] and CDC’s Environmental Hazards and Health Effects Program (EHHE) have cooperated since 1986 to promote the use of environmental epidemiology to evaluate adverse health effects associated with exposure to environmental contaminants. This cooperation aims to improve public health along the U.S.-Mexico border and in Latin America by strengthening the scientific basis for environmental health decisions.
- EHHE is collaborating with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and PAHO's field office in El Paso, Texas (PAHO-FEP) to develop binational environmental health indicators that establish a link between health and the environment.
- Several workshops have been sponsored in the border region to identify, score and rank environmental health indicators to focus on areas of local, state, and health agency concerns.
- Based on these workshops, pilot projects are planned that will collect data on both sides of the border using key environmental quality and health information as indicators that may demonstrate improvements in health and the environment.
- This binational activity will exchange information between state and local agencies and academic institutions in the United States and Mexico.
- The collaborative PAHO project will help demonstrate improvements in environment and public health as a result of activities associated with the Border 2012 program.
Other EHHE-PAHO cooperative activities promote healthy environments in Latin American and Caribbean regions and in the U.S.-Mexico border area. They are trying to improve environmental health surveillance activities, promote road safety, prevent violence, and conduct tobacco-related surveillance and control projects.