Last September, Allen J. Dozor, M.D., professor of pediatrics, chief of the Division of Pediatric Pulmonology and director of the new Children’s Environmental Health Center, heard from the parents of three children who went marching out onto their school’s newly polyurethaned gymnasium floor and ended up in emergency rooms wheezing with asthma.
Such situations are exactly what the new Children’s Environmental Health Center, opened last fall, hopes to prevent, said Dr. Dozor. The center is a collaboration of the physicians at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center and the faculty of the School of Public Health of New York Medical College. It is a partnership aiming to treat, educate and research the effects of environmental pollutants and toxicants on young children.
The Children’s Environmental Health Center is part of an integrated clinical network founded ten years ago by Robert W. Amler, M.D., currently dean of the School of Public Health and vice president for government affairs. While chief medical officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s agency for toxic substances, Dr. Amler obtained Congressional funds to launch three Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Units (PEHSUs). With additional funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), additional PEHSUs were opened across the country to form an integrated national network. PEHSUs now also operate in several other countries around the world.
The College-affiliated center, which is housed in a medical arts building adjacent to the Valhalla campus, is one of seven in the state, and the only one in Westchester County.
Click here to visit the Children's Environmental Health Center of the Hudson Valley.