Academic journal article The Journal of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health

Risky Trade: Infectious Disease in the Era of Global Trade

Academic journal article The Journal of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health

Risky Trade: Infectious Disease in the Era of Global Trade

Article excerpt

Risky Trade: Infectious Disease in the Era of Global Trade By Ann Marie Kimball. Published by Ashgate Publishing Limited, Aldershot, 2006. ISBN 0-7546-4296-8

The book is a timely reminder to governments and public health workers that the world-wide ecological changes taking place as a result of rapid urbanization, new agricultural policies and deforestation are driving animal microbes to new hosts in humans. Humans and animals have limited available land and live in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. These are rich grounds for the emergence of new infectious diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Avian Flu (H5N1) with the potential to cause pandemics. Many exotic diseases are spread by rapid air transportation of infected humans and contaminated food products. Many countries operate under global trade pressures which result in the spread of diseases: the spread of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) through blood products and new variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (nvCJD) are due to global trade pressures.

The developed donor countries of the world should invest in the development of public health infrastructure, access to clean drinking water and adequate sanitation facilities in the developing trading countries. Such investment would minimize the emergence of new infectious diseases. In the presence of a good public health system it would be possible to prevent the emergence of a disease (primary prevention) and control the outbreak of the disease (secondary prevention) and thereby prevent the international transmission (tertiary prevention). …

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