Global Climate Change And Health

1113 words | 4 page(s)

Recently climate has become a great concern worldwide due to the rapid global change and its effects on health (Bowles, Butler and Friel, 2014). This change in weather is attributed to natural courses such as solar radiation received by earth and human activities. Various scholarly articles assert these beliefs. Assembling a wide scope of facts and figures is essential to achieving a successful research study. This paper will look at how global climate change relates to health. The purpose of this paper is to discuss: health concerns related to global climate change; comparison between the U.S concerns and other countries; and health strategies a BNS nurse could implement.

Health concerns related to global climate change
Despite of Global climate change having beneficial effects it has several effects on the health of humans. The following are the effects of climate change on health (Nilsson, Evengard, Sauerborn and Bypass, 2012):

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It affects both the human health and diseases in various ways. It leads to emergence of new health threats and also worsening the condition of already existing diseases;
Colloquially, it affects the social and environmental determinants of health such as: production of food; clean air; the stability of shelter and drinking water (McMicheal, Montgomery and Costello, 2012);
Climate change leads to rapid increase in air temperatures which leads to deaths from respiratory diseases , especially among the elderly;
The change in climate leads to increase of natural disasters such as tsunami. This extreme weather events is very destructive to the humans and their surrounding and;
Climate change also affects the patterns of infection especially waterborne diseases and diseases transmitted through insects. The change in climate lengthens the transmission period.

Basing on the effects of climate change as aforementioned, it safe to say that climate change plays a crucial role in the health of human beings (Swaminathan, Lucas, Harley and McMicheal, 2014).

It is with no doubt that climate change poses a big threat to human health (Patz and Hatch, 2013). Climate change is reportedly the biggest global health threat in the 21st century. Despite of this fact, most public and global health services are not well equipped to face the challenges that arise from climate change. Also the health service has not been able to make climate change a priority in service development (Doherty and Clayton, 2011). Even though the world has become more aware of the climate change and its effect on health, key issues involved with translating the climate change literature into health services and workforce development have been ignored. Even nations such as the United States lack policy frameworks and regional level evidence that can equip policy makers to make the translation from documented climate changes to regional service development.

According to McMicheal, (2012), a change in climate is a big threat to the health of the humans and their environment. Therefore, health services and other departments have come up with protection strategies against climate change. These strategies can be implemented by anyone in the health service department. The following is one of the strategies the BSN nurse can implement: In 2005, WHO stated that nurses have a responsibility to the people to be environmental health activists, raise awareness of health implications of environmental changes, build capacity to adapt to climate change and support policies to reduce health vulnerability (Kang, 2011). Therefore, nurses are in good position to ensure the environment is well taken care of and ensuring the principle of recycle, reuse, recover and re-educate is implemented in the work place.

United States comparison
Climate change in the U.S is a huge concern since the country is already experiencing the effects of climate change. These effects are reported to be worse if action is not taken to curtail the country’s global emissions. Temperatures have already gone high by 2degrees F over the past 50 years and still it is predicted to raise further. Due to this, the U.S policy makers are seeking solutions that can prevent worse effects of climate change. The country is also pursuing the use of clean energy. Compared to the United States; China and Russia do not view climate change as a very serious problem. Only 44% in Russia and 30% in China view climate change as a serious problem.

As compared to the U.S climate change has become a very serious concern in India and Brazil. Findings from National Geographic showed that these two countries have become more aware of climate change and its effects as opposed to developed countries such as the U.S. These countries have different reactions, concerns and view about the climate change. The developing countries appear to be more concerned and take this issue seriously unlike developed countries. This difference in reaction arises from the assumption that global warming will worsen the way of life of people in developed countries within their lifetime (McMichael, 2012).

Climate change as discussed in this paper is seen to be a major problem to the whole world. It affects the health of human beings and their way of living negatively. Despite of the seriousness of this issue the health services have not prioritize the effects of climate change on health, hence, they do not treat it with the level of seriousness it deserves. However, the World Health Organization has come up with solutions of preventing climate change which could be implemented by BSN nurses (McMichael, 2012). Also the issue of climate change and global warming is a debatable topic amongst developed and developing countries, whereby, developing countries view this problem more seriously unlike developed countries. Despite of all this it is a fact climate change is a problem which is not easily dismissed.

  • Bowles, D. C., Butler, C. D., & Friel, S. (2014). Climate change and health in Earth’s future. Earth’s Future, 2(2), 60-67.
  • Doherty, T. J., & Clayton, S. (2011). The psychological impacts of global climate change. American Psychologist, 66(4), 265.
  • Kang, J. X. (2011). Omega-3: A link between global climate change and human health. Biotechnology advances, 29(4), 388-390.
  • Martens, P. (2014). Health and climate change: modelling the impacts of global warming and ozone depletion. Routledge.
  • McMichael, A. J. (2012). Insights from past millennia into climatic impacts on human health and survival. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 109(13), 4730-4737.
  • McMichael, A. J. (2013). Globalization, climate change, and human health. New England Journal of Medicine, 368(14), 1335-1343.
  • McMichael, T., Montgomery, H., & Costello, A. (2012). Health risks, present and future, from global climate change. BMJ, 344, e1359.
  • Nilsson, M., Evengård, B., Sauerborn, R., & Byass, P. (2012). Connecting the global climate change and public health agendas. PLoS medicine, 9(6), e1001227.
  • Patz, J. A., & Hatch, M. J. (2013). Public Health and Global Climate Disruption. Public Health Reviews (2107-6952), 35(1).
  • Swaminathan, A., Lucas, R. M., Harley, D., & McMichael, A. J. (2014). Will Global Climate Change Alter Fundamental Human Immune Reactivity: Implications for Child Health?. Children, 1(3), 403-423.

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