Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Agencies often hindered in addressing health concerns from industrial animal production

Date:
February 24, 2014
Source:
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Summary:
Regulatory agencies often take limited action when confronted with public health concerns resulting from industrial food animal production operations. This is according to a new study that examined agency responses to community health concerns. They found that agencies with jurisdiction over industrial food animal production operations are unable to address concerns primarily due to narrow regulations, a lack of public health expertise, and limited resources.

State regulatory agencies face barriers and often take limited action when confronted with public health concerns resulting from industrial food animal production operations. This is according to a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future who examined agency responses to community health concerns. They found that agencies with jurisdiction over industrial food animal production operations are unable to address concerns primarily due to narrow regulations, a lack of public health expertise, and limited resources. The results are featured today online in PLOS ONE.

"Despite the well-established health risks associated with living and working near industrial food animal production operations, regulation of these sites is limited and characterized by a patchwork of different regulatory approaches from state to state," said Jillian Fry, PhD, MPH, a project director at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. "Common across most states, however, is delegating the permitting to an agency without a primary mandate to address public health, which raises concerns that public health issues may not be adequately monitored or addressed. Our study found that permitting and agriculture agencies' response to health-based industrial farm animal production concerns are constrained by narrow regulations, a lack of public health expertise, and limited resources. In addition, most agency staff believed health departments should play a role in addressing citizen concerns related to industrial food animal production operations."

Researchers conducted semi-structured qualitative interviews with staff at 12 state agencies in seven states. The agencies were selected based on high volumes of industrial food animal production or a rapid increase in the number of industrial food animal production operations within their state. The interviews were conducted to gather information regarding agency involvement in regulating operations, the frequency and type of contacts received about public health concerns, how the agency responds to such contacts and barriers to additional involvement.

Previous studies have shown air near animal production sites to contain hydrogen sulfide, particulate matter, and allergens. Exposure to these emissions has been associated with multiple respiratory, cardiovascular and neurological health problems. A 2013 publication by Fry et al. indicates that despite being contacted by citizens regarding health concerns associated with industrial food animal operations, state and local health departments also played a limited role in addressing health issues. Health department staff cited limited staff resources, lack of expertise or training, jurisdictional issues, and political pressures for their lack of action.

"Combining these results with previously published findings on barriers facing local and state health departments in the same states reveals significant gaps between these agencies regarding public health and industrial farm animal production," suggest the authors.

Fry notes, "There is a clear need for regulations to protect public health and for public health professionals to provide complementary expertise to agencies responsible for regulating industrial farm animal production operations."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jillian P. Fry, Linnea I. Laestadius, Clare Grechis, Keeve E. Nachman, Roni A. Neff. Investigating the Role of State Permitting and Agriculture Agencies in Addressing Public Health Concerns Related to Industrial Food Animal Production. PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (2): e89870 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0089870

Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Agencies often hindered in addressing health concerns from industrial animal production." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 February 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140224171440.htm>.
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. (2014, February 24). Agencies often hindered in addressing health concerns from industrial animal production. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140224171440.htm
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Agencies often hindered in addressing health concerns from industrial animal production." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140224171440.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 23, 2014) The WHO has warned up to 20,000 people could be infected with Ebola over the next few weeks. As Sonia Legg reports, the implications for the West African countries suffering from the disease are huge. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

AFP (Sep. 23, 2014) The number of Ebola infections will triple to 20,000 by November, soaring by thousands every week if efforts to stop the outbreak are not stepped up radically, the WHO warned in a study on Tuesday. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) No surprise here: A recent study says men can reduce their risk of heart attack by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which includes daily exercise. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) Liberia's finance minister is urging the international community to quickly follow through on pledges of cash to battle Ebola. Bodies are piling up in the capital Monrovia as the nation awaits more help. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins