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New who books

Community emergency preparedness

A Manual for Managers and Policy-makers

1999, iv + 141 pages (available in English; French in preparation)

ISBN 92 4 154519 44

Sw. fr. 42 / US $ 37.80

In developing countries: Sw. fr. 29.40

Order no. 1150464

This book provides a guide to policies, procedures, and planning techniques that can help mitigate the consequences of natural and man-made disasters. Addressed to managers in health administrations, hospitals, public works, and volunteer organizations, the manual draws on abundant evidence that emergency preparedness can help stricken communities limit the consequences of major emergencies and overcome them at an early stage. With this goal in mind, the manual covers the full range of considerations needed to identify vulnerable populations, predict the likelihood and consequences of emergencies, and plan for an appropriate response.The manual has six chapters. The first introduces the concepts of emergency preparedness and vulnerability reduction, and explains their importance in the context of several recent trends. These include important increases in the number of disasters, the number of people affected by disasters, the economic losses, and the expenditure on humanitarian assistance. The chapter also identifies six sectors that should be involved in the planning of disaster management: communications, health, police and security, search and rescue, social welfare, and transport and lifelines. The need for coordinated action is stressed.Chapter two, on policy development, identifies eleven policy issues and lists various options - such as giving the armed forces responsibility for emergency management or establishing an emergency cell within the health sector - that can help guide policy decisions.Against this background, chapter three describes a series of steps, supported by different analytical and assessment techniques, for an analysis of hazards aimed at identifying vulnerable populations, determining the likelihood of an emergency, and gauging its effects. Principles and methods are illustrated through the detailed examples of a flood hazard assessment and the use of quantitative and qualitative hazard analysis to assess the risks posed by hazardous industry. Other issues addressed include indicators of a community’s capacity for response and recovery, specific needs that can be predicted for different types of emergencies, and the use of models to rank hazards and select those requiring the most urgent response.Chapter four provides an outline of the principles of emergency planning, followed by a detailed guide to each step in the process. Practical advice is given for resource analysis and management, the assignment of roles and responsibilities, the designation of authority and reporting relationships among different organizations, and the conduct of an emergency assessment to identify urgent needs and set priorities for response and recovery. The remaining chapters address the need for training and education of vulnerable communities, and outline procedures for monitoring and evaluation.Further practical guidance is provided in a series of annexes, which include tables for gauging the scale of damage caused by wind storms, hurricane disasters, earthquakes, landslides, and volcanic eruptions.

Human Exposure Assessment

Environmental Health Criteria, No. 214

2000, xxx + 375 pages

(English, with summaries in French and Spanish)

ISBN 92 4 157214 0

Sw. fr. 78 / US $ 70.20

In developing countries: Sw. fr. 54.60

Order no. 1160214

This book offers an up-to-date guide to the concepts, procedures, statistical methods, and models used to assess human exposure to environmental chemicals. Noting that exposure assessment is a comparatively new discipline of the environmental sciences, the book aims to encourage its use as a powerful tool for measuring actual levels of exposure and determining whether interventions are needed to protect public health. With this goal in mind, the book gives researchers expert advice on the design and conduct of studies, the interpretation of findings, and the best methods for ensuring the reliability and reproducibility of results. Throughout, emphasis is placed on the ways in which well-designed exposure assessments can enhance the practical value of findings from traditional epidemiological and toxicological investigations.The book has twelve chapters. The first six cover conceptual and methodological issues. Chapter one introduces basic concepts used in exposure assessment, and describes direct and indirect methods of measuring or estimating actual exposure and determining whether intervention is required. The uses of human exposure data are covered in chapter two, which explains how studies of human exposure can reduce the uncertainty of estimates used in epidemiology, risk assessment, and risk management. Chapter three considers several generic study designs and approaches, and compares their advantages and limitations. Chapter four, on statistical methods, discusses selective applications of descriptive and inferential statistics, using data on lead exposure as an example. Subsequent chapters review methods for the collection and application of time-use data, and introduce the principles, methods, and data requirements of exposure modelling.Against this background, chapters in the second half of the book offer practical advice on the design and conduct of studies aimed at assessing exposure to chemicals in different environmental media. Separate chapters describe sampling methods used to analyse chemical concentrations in air, water, and food, and in soil and settled dust. Environmental allergens that can contribute to disease or alter susceptibility are considered in chapter nine, which concentrates on methods for measuring particles from house dust mites and their faeces, allergens from pets and cockroaches, and allergens or toxins from fungi, bacteria, and pollen.Subsequent chapters describe the use of biological markers in exposure assessment, and discuss issues surrounding the quality assurance of exposure studies and results. The final chapter presents brief summaries and examples of exposure studies in order to illustrate different study designs for different objectives, target pollutants, and populations. Studies that show how exposure assessment supports epidemiology and risk management, particularly in developing countries, are also included.

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