The paper develops and applies a Grossman-style health production model set up in discrete time to explain the impact of environmental pollution on the demand for both health and health care. In order to introduce the environment, our analysis takes changes in environmental conditions to influence the rate at which an individual's stock of health depreciates. While the theoretical part of our paper also contains a discussion of the full model, we restrict our analysis to a submodel which is known as the pure investment model. lbis is because the other submodel, the pure consumption model, implies a rather implausible case of satiation with respect to the individual's preferences. Our empirical findings' are based on data taken from the German Socio-economic Panel (SOEP). The stock of health capital and environmental pollution are treated as latent variables and estimated using a LINCS model. The quality of the environment turns out to be an important determinant of health capital. From the point of view of health economics, improvements in environmental conditions can be interpreted as preventive measures. In terms of prevention, public policies designed to protect the environment also yield significant health effects. As regards health care demand the influence is not dearcut, i.e. one cannot necessarily expect a reduction in resource use.