Helping Children Recover from Wildfire Disasters

By austinfit – October 4, 2011

Dr. Brown recommends the American Academy of Pediatrics web site as a resource for parents (www.aap.org). The site includes a section on children’s health after wildfires. Some of that information has been excerpted here:

Children are especially vulnerable to environmental hazards.
They eat more food, drink more liquids, and breathe more air than adults on a pound for pound basis. Children are in a critical period of development when toxic exposures can have profound negative effects and their exploratory behavior often places them in direct contact with materials that adults would avoid.

Wildfires expose children to a number of
environmental hazards

Key requirements for children to return to an area impacted by wildfires include restored drinking water and sewage removal, safe road conditions, removal of ash and debris, and structurally sound homes.

To address the health risks to children from wildfires, the Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Units (PEHSUs), with review and input from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Committee on Environmental Health, have developed fact sheets. These documents have been reviewed and endorsed by the AAP.

You can find the fact sheet on the recovery phase (after wildfires) here:
www.aap.org/disasters/pdf/Wildfires-RecoveryPhase.pdf

 
 

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