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New Disaster Topic Page from NLM: Droughts and Health

A new disaster topic page on Droughts and Health has been compiled by the National Library of Medicine’s Disaster Information Management Research Center. The page focuses primarily on human health effects of drought conditions as experienced in the United States. It is intended to grow as new materials become available on this topic. Health effects in the United States have historically included (or are speculated to include):

  • Changes to water quality, especially private wells, with potential for increased waterborne disease
  • Changes to air quality, including increased dust and particulates, with potential for increased respiratory distress
  • Poorer personal hygiene due to decreased water availability
  • Food crop or food processing contamination from use of recycled water
  • Increased suicide rate (higher than national average) among farm families affected by drought-related economic concerns

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