Author(s): DF Charron, T Edge, MD Fleury, W Galatianos, D Gillis
Research goals were to investigate the incidence of waterborne illness in Canada, describe the complex systemic inter-relationships between disease incidence, weather parameters, and water quality and quantity, and address possible consequences of climate change on the incidence of waterborne diseases. Specific objectives of the research were to: Review the existing state of national and international knowledge on the association between weather events, water quantity and quality, and waterborne illness, and build a combined geo-referenced database of existing Canadian weather data, water quality and quantity data, and waterborne illness data Describe the incidence and distribution of waterborne illness in Canada and weather events occurring concomitantly with illness, and test associations between weather events and waterborne disease incidence and outbreaks. Model and quantify associations between weather variables, water quality and quantity, and incidence of waterborne illness, using temporal-spatial analyses in several regions of Canada. Project the impact of global climate change on the risk of waterborne illness by coupling the information gained in Objective #3 to several accepted climate change model scenarios. Disseminate findings to policy audience; engage decision-makers from environment and health in an ongoing discussion of the impacts of climate change on waterborne disease hazards.