The built environment and children's health

Pediatr Clin North Am. 2001 Oct;48(5):1241-52, x. doi: 10.1016/s0031-3955(05)70372-2.


The built environment embraces a wide range of concepts, from the design and integrity of housing, to land-use urban planning. A high-quality environment is essential for children to achieve optimal health and development. Building and land-use policies, including the quality and design of a child's physical environment, can cause or prevent illness, disability, and injury, and can degrade or preserve natural resources. Though many common pediatric conditions such as obesity, asthma, and lead poisoning, as well as injuries, are associated with risk factors within a child's built environment, this issue has received little attention from researchers or policymakers. This new field is ripe for etiologic and prevention research, and we need pediatric advocates to speak out for children's needs within this arena.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Welfare*
  • Environment Design*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Environmental Health
  • Facility Design and Construction*
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors