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Drinking Water Fact Sheet: Drinking Water and the Elderly

Aging is associated with physiological, functional, and behavioral changes that can result in increased vulnerability to biological and chemical contaminants in drinking water. As a group, the elderly are at increased risk of infection and disease from microbial contamination due to many factors, such as reduced immunity, frailty from malnutrition, or existing chronic illness. In addition, decreased liver and kidney function associated with aging affects how the body processes chemicals, and irregularities of the thirst mechanism alter fluid balance. Exposure patterns for the institutionalized elderly may also differ in important ways from patterns in other populations. As a group, the elderly can suffer more severe consequences from infections such as Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7, and are at greater risk of dying from waterborne infections.

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Resources

  • PSR-WI Reproductive Environmental Screening Tool

    Before during and after pregnancy, women are exposed to many chemicals that may harm them and the growing fetus. Health practitioners use this tool to evaluate their patient’s risk and women and parents can use this tool to learn about these toxic chemicals and become a resource for your community. Read more »

  • Webinar: The Fight for Solar

    Solar energy is one of our best hopes for a clean energy future – yet some utility companies are trying to stifle the spread of rooftop solar. Learn more about the fight for rooftop ("distributed") solar. Read more »

  • Letter Opposing Dakota Access Pipeline

    Letter from PSR and Student PSR in support of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and in strong opposition of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Read more »

In the Spotlight

  • October 15, 2016
    Boston Symposium
    A one-day Symposium to examine the catastrophic public health consequences of climate change and the ways that climate change will increase the risk of conflict, including nuclear war.