Article NO. 11
International Tourism and Its Global Public Health Consequences
LINDA K. RICHTER

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Tourism, the world’s largest industry, is expected to grow to 1.6 billion arrivals by 2020. Public health officials are only beginning to understand the challenges such growth will entail. This article argues that there is a unique and growing public health crisis associated with global tourism. The threat is not only to the tourists but also host societies and the tourists’ home nations. Demographics, deforestation, deregulation, decentralization, privatization, and the fragmentation of power pose a dreadful urgency to dealing with this issue. Studies of warning and advisory mechanisms, authority and political will of international bodies, and the overall importance of tourism to most nations illustrate that regulation and coordination are eroding as the need for international collaboration grows. The study concludes with an action agenda for attempting to deal with this crisis.

Keywords: public policy; health monitoring; security; terrorism; international tourism

 

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