State Children's Environmental Health Profiles

Where children live, learn, play, and work can influence their health. This is especially pertinent at the community or neighborhood level, but state level information can be informative as well.

Unique regional, geographic and meteorological conditions, population sizes, economies,  major industries, and state and local policies and regulations contribute to a state's environmental health profile.

Federal policy, regulations, and support also influence states' environmental health, and the health of children living in them. CEHN is developing fact sheets that include indicators of environmental hazards, environmental exposure, and child health and development to provide an understanding of children's environmental health at the state level. The criteria for inclusion of children's environmental health indicators (CEHIs) in these fact sheets are:

INDICATOR CRITERIA

  • Relevance: Each headline indicator should be a clear, understandable indicator of children’s environmental health, with broad relevance for a range of audiences at the state level – with relevance to the national level.
  • Representativeness: The indicators as a package should provide a representative picture of children’s health and relation to the environment.
  • Traceability: Each indicator should be calculated using an agreed-upon (and published) method and accessible and verifiable data.
  • Timeliness: Each indicator should be calculated regularly (at least biennially), with a short lag between the end of the period and publication of the data.
  • Data adequacy: The available data needed for the indicator must be sufficiently robust, reliable and valid.
  • Universality: Indicators must be comparable across all or very nearly all 50 U.S. states.

To date, 3 fact sheets have been completed, for the states: Michigan, Minnesota, and North Carolina. Through this process, CEHN found that robust, valid, and regularly updated state level data--that are comparable across most states--were not readily accessible. States need adequate funding and capacity to collect, and to make accessible, reliable CEHI data in order to set goals and track progress towards improving children's health.

Read more about CEHIs and download our report Children's Environmental Health Indicators: A Summary and Assessment