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Accelerating Efforts To Address Climate Change Vital To Global Health

PLOS Medicine: Climate change and health: Moving from theory to practice
Jonathan A. Patz, director of the Global Health Institute at the University of Washington-Madison and professor and John P. Holton chair in health and the environment with appointments in the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Department of Population Health Sciences; and Madeleine C. Thomson, senior research scientist at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, senior research scholar at the Mailman School of Public Health Department of Environmental Health Sciences, and director at the WHO Collaborating Centre on Early Warning Systems for Malaria and other Climate Sensitive Diseases

“…Risks from climate change are now mainstream in the health discourse. … [M]ultiple lines of evidence and research have shown climate change to be a threat to global health. At the same time, actions targeting the cause of climate change (reducing [greenhouse gas (GHG)] emissions) offer large health benefits, especially in the area of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). The challenge is now to bring interventions to scale — practical action requires an informed health workforce, an engaged public, [a Health in all Policies (HiAP)] approach involving many related sectors, new resources and new technologies, and financing equal to the task at hand. … [T]he pace must be rapidly accelerated to assure the future health and well-being of populations across the globe, prioritizing the most vulnerable communities not only in high-income countries but also in low- and middle-income countries. To achieve this acceleration, tailored resources that can be used in teaching climate change and health must be developed and integrated into the core curricula of public health physicians, nurses, and other health workers as a priority” (7/31).

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