WHO says ready to help Japan in nuclear crisis

March 15, 2011

The World Health Organization said Tuesday it was ready to help Japan, which is grappling with a nuclear emergency after some reactors were damaged by last week's deadly earthquake.

"We have expressed our availability to participate in a mission, to offer necessary assistance, if it is required," said Maria Neira, the UN health agency's director of public health and environment.

"We are ready," she added.

Radiation near a quake-hit reached levels harmful to , Japan's government said after two explosions and a fire at the crippled facility Tuesday.

Four of the six reactors at the Fukushima No.1 plant, 250 kilometres (155 miles) northeast of Tokyo, have now overheated and sparked explosions since Friday's massive earthquake and tsunami knocked out cooling systems.

The WHO assessed that Japanese authorities have acted appropriately in imposing exclusion zones around the plant.

"The actions proposed by the government of Japan are in line with the existing reommendations based on public health expertise," said the UN health agency.

However, Neira warned: "The situation is evolving very quickly, the recommendations will have to be adapted with the situation as it evolves.

"For the time being, with the core information that is available with the prevailing situation, the type of radioactivity that is in the area, the measures of evacuating, the measures of requesting people to stay indoors, the measures to preposition and eventually distribute , those are the ones that the public health community is recommending," she said.

Neira also said that the WHO was not making any specific recommendation on diet at the moment, as "the produce that will be at risk will be the produce that are growing in the contaminated areas."

"Our understanding is that there are no problems at the moment (from what) they've collected from the area, because it's totally innundated."

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Amber-tinted glasses may provide relief for insomnia

December 15, 2017
How do you unwind before bedtime? If your answer involves Facebook and Netflix, you are actively reducing your chance of a good night's sleep. And you are not alone: 90 percent of Americans use light-emitting electronic devices, ...

Warning labels can help reduce soda consumption and obesity, new study suggests

December 15, 2017
Labels that warn people about the risks of drinking soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages can lower obesity and overweight prevalence, suggests a new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study.

Office work can be a pain in the neck

December 15, 2017
Neck pain is a common condition among office workers, but regular workplace exercises can prevent and reduce it, a University of Queensland study has found.

Regular takeaways linked to kids' heart disease and diabetes risk factors

December 14, 2017
Kids who regularly eat take-away meals may be boosting their risk factors for heart disease and diabetes, suggests research published online in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

Your pets can't put your aging on 'paws'

December 14, 2017
(HealthDay)—In a finding that's sure to ruffle some fur and feathers, scientists report that having a pet doesn't fend off age-related declines in physical or mental health.

Simulation model finds Cure Violence program and targeted policing curb urban violence

December 14, 2017
When communities and police work together to deter urban violence, they can achieve better outcomes with fewer resources than when each works in isolation, a simulation model created by researchers at the UC Davis Violence ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.