The story of the Sambhavna Clinic, a non-profit holistic health clinic in Bhopal, India, built to treat those injured by the Union Carbide toxic gas release in 1984. enlarge video
Flame Retardants: Global Overview
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To meet fire safety standards, chemicals that act as flame retardants are added to a wide range of products, including IV pumps, televisions, computers, hospital beds, waiting-room chairs and hospital privacy curtains. Unfortunately many of these flame retardant chemicals do not remain fixed in the product, and slowly leak into our air, dust and water, eventually entering our food and bodies.
Evidence shows that a subset of these chemicals called "brominated flame retardants" (BFRs) are likely to bioaccumulate in people and cause adverse health effects in children. The breast milk of American women contains the highest levels of BFRs in human breast milk found anywhere in the world.
Health Care Without Harm is working with health care institutions to identify BFR-containing products and to switch to safer alternatives when possible.
For detailed information on this topic, in addition to tools and resources, select your region of the world from the links at the top of this page.
- Brominated Flame Retardants: Rising Levels of Concern — 2005 Report (pdf)
- Flame Retardants: Alarming Increases in Humans and the Environment (pdf)
- Halogenated Flame Retardants and Safer Alternatives Webinar presentation (pdf) Webinar audio (mp3 9MB)