Millions of U.S. homes have moderate to severe physical housing problems, including a dilapidated structure; roofing problems; heating, plumbing, and electrical deficiencies; water leaks and intrusion; pests; damaged paint; and high radon gas levels—all of which can result in a range of health issues. Enter National Healthy Homes Month, which aims to find ways to keep people of all ages healthy in their home.
Happening in June, National Healthy Homes Month—created by the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes—is an outreach campaign designed to help people connect the dots between their health and their home.
This year’s theme is “A Healthy Home @ Any Age.” The National Center for Healthy Housing suggests healthy homes are important to all homeowners, renters, older adults, children, and others regardless of race, income, education, or social status.
A healthy home can help minimize health issues such as respiratory illnesses like asthma and lead positioning, just to name a few. This is important because as we know people spend close to 90% of their time indoors.
National Healthy Homes Month focuses on the importance of home assessments and the impact awareness can have on health and how it can empower people to make change in order to create the healthiest home possible for themselves and their families.
Here’s the challenge. The health and economic burdens from preventable hazards associated within a home are considerable and cost billions of dollars. My question then becomes can everyone truly afford to live in a healthy home? This has been the discussion on Project Sustainability Podcast for several weeks now. We have been addressing air and water issues in the home and the many things we as homeowners might never consider.
Sure, we can all make small changes—and small changes can make a big difference. But can the average person afford the technology needed to optimize health in the home? I am not so sure.
We shall see what continues to unfold through the month of June. The National Center for Healthy Housing will host a webinar on June 28 titled Improving Indoor Air Quality in Affordable Housing: What the Research Tells Us and Recommended Interventions.
Work is being done to close the divide between those who can afford a healthy home and those who cannot. However, after engaging in discussions with folks much smarter than me, it seems there still needs to be more work to be done to expedite the pace of change if we hope to narrow in on the ethical principles required for a broad range of healthcare services. What are your thoughts?
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