The Center for Public Integrity (CPI) and Scientific American yesterday independently published two overviews of the most current scientific research on the Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) epidemic in Central America.

Sasha Chavkin, a member of CPI’s International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, has been investigating CKD epidemics in Central America, India, and Sri Lanka for over two years.

In his report, Chavkin acknowledged that the scientific community as a whole has not reached total agreement on the causes of the Central American epidemic, but, “Most scientists suspect the disease is caused by a combination of factors including chronic dehydration from hard labor in tropical heat and exposure to toxins such as pesticides.”

Chavkin mentioned La Isla Foundation’s (LIF) ongoing commitment to addressing the epidemic based on this prevailing causal theory of dehydration and toxin exposure.

By advocating for dehydration intervention programs similar to OSHA’s “Water. Rest. Shade.” initiative, LIF strives to eliminate one dangerous aspect of the conditions facing sugar workers. “If you want to save lives, you need to focus on occupation and you need to get real,” LIF CEO and Co-Founder Jason Glaser said to Chavkin.

Gary Stix’s blog post for Scientific American similarly identifies the general opinion of researchers: “Dehydration from the brutal heat of the cane fields is the leading suspect.”

Both posts highlighted La Isla Foundation’s upcoming research and advocacy projects made possible by funding from a grant from the Dutch National Postcode Lottery.