Goal 2. Improve Arctic Human Health



Motivation

Significant physical and mental health disparities exist between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples in the Arctic, and between Arctic and non-Arctic populations. Decreasing rates of infant mortality, fetal alcohol syndrome, chronic respiratory disease, and accidental injury are offset by increasing rates of substance abuse, domestic violence, and suicide.

Nearly 40% of Alaskan women have been raped or sexually assaulted. Victims of intimate partner violence are more likely to experience adverse health conditions and health risk behaviors.

Water and sanitation are critically important to human health, yet these fundamental needs, and the infrastructure to provide them, are inadequate in many rural Arctic communities.

Recommendations

  • Improve the quality, efficiency, effectiveness, and value of health care delivery in the Arctic.
  • Investigate factors associated with domestic violence, including prevention, effective interventions, long-term health effects and socio-economic drivers.
  • Evaluate and review behavioral and mental health intervention efforts to update research priorities and to guide the scaling of successful local efforts into broader clinical interventions.
  • Support integrative approaches to human health that recognize the connections among people, wildlife, the environment, and climate.