Climate and emergency medicine resources

Physician climate leadership meme

Thank you for participating in our webinar series Climate and health: An emergency medicine perspective. Below you will find links to the recordings, slides, and resources for each of the webinars in the series. Register for upcoming webinars at Greenhealth Academy. Continuing medical education (CME) credits are available for physicians upon registration and payment of $15 per CME credit.

Webinar 1: Physician climate leadership

Listen to the recording and view the accompanying slide deck (select archive from the menu to view the recording).

Emergency medicine is on the front lines of climate change. As health care providers for vulnerable patient populations and experts in disaster medicine and preparedness, emergency medicine physicians have the expertise and moral authority to lead on climate education, research, and advocacy.

In this webinar, Dr. Jay Lemery and Dr. Jeremy Hess, emergency medicine physicians, climate and health thought leaders, educators, and researchers, discussed the impact of climate change on human health and emergency medicine along with the importance of emergency medicine physician climate leadership.

Webinar 1 resources

Dr. Renee Salas articulates why emergency medicine needs to engage in and lead climate and health advocacy, education and research efforts in this commentary, “Climate Change and Emergency Medicine: A Specialty on the Frontline.”

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) recently passed this policy Impact of Climate Change on Public Health and Implications for Emergency Medicine.

In “Enviromedics: The Impact of Climate Change on Human Health,” Lemery and Dr. Paul Auerbach enlighten readers about the health impacts of climate change, from an emergency medicine physician perspective.

This comprehensive textbook, “Global Climate Change and Human Health: From Science to Practice,” edited by Lemery and Dr. George Luber, provides students and clinicians with the foundations of climate science and human health along with communication, adaptation, and mitigation strategies.

Lemery and others published this opinion piece in the British Medical Journal, “We Need Climate Doctors” as a call to action to educate a new generation of “climate doctors” - physicians, researchers, and public health professionals - who understand climate and health science and have the knowledge and tools to take action.

Lemery has authored other pieces about the importance of emergency medicine climate advocacy and leadership including “Emergency Medicine's Unexpected Role in Climate Change” and “Peering Through the Hourglass.”

Lemery was inspired to learn more about the link between climate and health when he read this commentary in Journal of the American Medical Association, “Physicians and the Environment,” written by his mentor, Dr. Paul Auerbach.

A 12-month program, Climate and Health Policy Fellowship, led by Lemery and hosted by the University of Colorado Department of Emergency Medicine, aims to train physicians leaders in the field of climate change and heath. Emergency medicine physician, Dr. Cecilia Sorensen is the current fellow.

Hess presents the clinical and public health challenges of climate change on emergency medicine, along with numerous opportunities for research, education, and leadership in Climate Change and Emergency Medicine: Impacts and Opportunities.

Emergency medicine physicians can engage in research about the impacts of climate change and extreme weather events on health.

Webinar 2: Preparing for climate emergencies

Listen to the recording and view the accompanying slide deck (select archive from the menu to view the recording).

Recent natural disasters, such as hurricanes, floods and wildfires, have disrupted health care access and delivery, demonstrating the critical need for health care facilities to prepare for future extreme weather events and a changing climate.

In this webinar, Massachusetts General Hospital emergency medicine physicians, Dr. Paul Biddinger and Dr. Renee Salas, discussed the impacts of climate driven, extreme weather events on emergency departments and health systems along with opportunities for resilience, preparedness and emergency medicine leadership.

Webinar 2 resources

To make the business case to leadership to invest in climate resilient health care, read the report Safe haven in the storm, which demonstrates the importance of hospitals and health systems preparing for extreme weather events.

Dr. Renee Salas writes about the impact of climate change on health in these two publications, Climate change harms health. Yes, even yours and Pollution and climate change hurt children most of all.

In this commentary, Climate and Emergency Medicine: A Specialty on the Frontline, Salas articulates why emergency medicine needs to engage in and lead climate and health advocacy, education and research efforts.

During the webinar, Salas presented several case studies about how extreme weather events have impacted health care delivery and access. Read this New York Times article Hospitals Pummeled by Hurricane. Michael Scramble to Evacuate Patients.

Salas is the lead author of the 2018 Lancet Countdown U.S Policy Brief on health and climate change which will be launched on November 29, 2018.

During the webinar Biddinger presented a case study about the resilient design of Partners Health Care’s Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Boston’s first waterfront facility that included climate vulnerability in the planning and design process. Take a tour of this climate resilient hospital!

Building Better Hospitals to Stand Up to Climate Change features Partners HealthCare’s commitment to climate resilient design and preparedness and details Biddinger’s role in the planning of Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital.

In 2017 Partners HealthCare and Health Care Without Harm co-sponsored a resilience

summit in Boston, during which Biddinger spoke. Read the report Resilience 2.0: Healthcare's Role in Anchoring Community Health and Resilience.

To learn more about climate resilient facilities, Biddinger recommends:

Sustainable and Climate-Resilient Health Care Facilities Toolkit
Smart Hospitals Toolkit
Operational framework for building climate resilient health systems

Webinar 3: Delivering climate-smart health care

Listen to the webinar recording and view the accompanying slide deck. (Select “archive” from the menu to view the recording).

While physicians take an oath to “do no harm,” the enormous environmental impact of health care operations in the United States is contributing to the burden of disease and harming the health of patients and communities. The health care sector produces an estimated 10 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

In this webinar, emergency medicine physicians Dr. Amy Collins and Dr. Jonathan Slutzman discussed the environmental impact of the health care sector along with opportunities for physicians to promote environmentally responsible, climate-smart health care.

Webinar 3 resources

Physicians who are interested in advancing sustainable health care are encouraged to join the Physician Network and to check out our fact sheet, Climate, health and health care: How physicians can help, and our guide, How to get started as a physician sustainability champion.

Join us at CleanMed May 7-9 in Nashville to connect with the sustainable health care community and to attend the many physician-led, CME-eligible educational sessions.

Take action by advocating for your hospital or health system to join the Health Care Climate Challenge. Access resources to communicate with your leadership, including talking points and an email template.

Slutzman published The hidden harm of health care: Air, water and other pollution in STAT News as a call to action to physicians and the health care sector to work together to reduce the environmental impact of health care delivery.

During a session at CleanMed Europe, Slutzman asked, Is there a role for emergency medicine in climate change mitigation and response? Read it to learn his answer. 

Physician climate leadership

Health Care Without Harm Physician Network supports physicians interested in promoting environmentally responsible, climate-smart health care. To learn more contact Dr. Amy Collins or download our fact sheet “Climate, health and health care: How physicians can help.” Save the date for our next gathering at CleanMed in Nashville May 7 to 9.

Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health brings together 22 medical societies to educate policymakers and the public about the harmful health impacts of climate change and the health benefits of transitioning to renewable energy sources. To learn more contact, Dr. Mona Sarfaty.

The purpose of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine’s Climate Change and Health Interest Group is to foster education, research, and advocacy in the realm of climate change and health. To learn more contact, Dr. Renee Salas.

Emergency medicine physicians on Twitter

Dr. Amy Collins
Dr. Courtney Howard
Dr. Jay Lemery
Dr. Paul Auerbach
Dr. Renee Salas