The use of large amounts of pesticides and illegal chemicals for agricultural work/products, the import of poor/out-of-date technologies to develop industry and the short term vision of farmers, and even community leaders, have created a significant change in the disease pattern of Vietnamese over the last 20 years. Infectious diseases which caused the greatest mortality are now being replaced by cancers, cardiovascular disease and traffic accidents.
In addition, in the push for rapid development, thousands of hectares of forests have been cut down for construction, to establish rice/corn fields, for road construction and to build hydropower dams. These actions have contributed to a number of unpredictable disasters for the Vietnamese population.
PHAD focuses its efforts in studying how climate change influences human health, and to try and introduce some initiatives to protect the environment, such as less using pesticides and the correct use of these chemicals, along with the collection and safe disposal of used packaging, and the introduction of a list of legal and illegal chemicals/pesticides for use in agricultural activities. PHAD also encourages reforestation and the protection of natural resources.
In addition to trying to address what we are doing wrong environmentally, PHAD targets its interventions to mitigate the impact of climate change on the community. This includes trainings on how to protect the home before a storm, and the preparation of clean water and food for storage in a safe place before a storm or the rainy season arrives.
Environmental health project at PHAD: