NIH and Gates Foundation-Funded Research to Measure Health Benefits of Clean Cookstoves
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, will fund a $30.5 million, multi-country trial to investigate the correlation between home use of clean cookstoves using liquefied petroleum gas and its measurable health benefits, particularly for women and children.
“Indoor air pollution caused by cookstoves is one of the top health risks in developing countries, causing deaths from low birth weight among babies, pneumonia in young children, and heart and lung problems in adults,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. “By working with our global partners on alternative fuel solutions, we have an opportunity to reduce that risk significantly for millions of people.”
More than 3 billion people around the world still cook over open fires or traditional stoves that use wood, coal and charcoal for fuel. Smoke from these stoves is a leading contributor to household air pollution, which has devastating health impacts on women and children in particular. 500,000 child deaths each year are a result of acute lower respiratory infections cause by household air pollution. Globally 4.3 million people die prematurely each year from exposure to HAP.
Over the course of 30 months, researchers from Emory University will monitor the stove use and exposure to household air pollution of participating households in India, Rwanda, Guatemala, and Peru. The study will assess health outcomes, including birth weight, growth, and respiratory infections in children and respiratory function, blood pressure, and inflammation in adults.
This study is part of an extensive international effort coordinated by the Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases to conduct research in 30 countries to better understand how to prevent and manage chronic lung diseases.