On 18 and 19 May 2016, Bonn, Germany hosted the WHO international meeting on the economic health costs and impacts that the past and present use of asbestos has on society. Participants were representatives of 13 countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation, Serbia, Tajikistan, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkmenistan and Ukraine – and experts from international organizations and research institutes.

This meeting contributed, in particular, to one of the commitments of the Parma Declaration on Environment and Health to develop national programmes to eliminate asbestos-related diseases (ARDs) by 2015. ARDs are responsible for an estimated 107 000 deaths per year worldwide.

Different country asbestos profiles were presented at the meeting. Participants also discussed the rising medical costs associated with ARDs, the rising prevalence in mesothelioma- and asbestos-associated lung cancer, the economic effects of their imposed asbestos bans and the use of alternatives. Read more

Courtesy: World Health Organization