how climate affects community health – full video

how climate affects community health - full video

widespread scientific consensus tells us the world's climate is changing these changes are creating new health risks in communities across the United States extreme weather unhealthy air quality and disease outbreaks are becoming a more frequent and more severe affecting more people in more places changes to our climate mean our communities need to prepare for the health risks of higher temperatures extreme heat can lead to heat stroke heat cramps heat exhaustion dehydration and death anyone can be at risk but some are more vulnerable including pregnant women people with heart or lung conditions young children older adults athletes and outdoor workers so how do we prepare for extreme heat communities can establish cooling centers plant trees to lower urban temperatures and educate residents on ways to protect themselves and others such as drinking plenty of water and checking on older relatives and neighbors a changing climate also means more frequent and more severe storms and flooding that puts people at immediate risk of being injured or killed by debris downed power lines or floodwaters after a severe storm or flooding event possible health risks are contaminated food or drinking water bacteria viruses and toxic chemicals and floodwaters mold and difficulty accessing health care services like emergency help prescribe medications and supplemental oxygen in these events all the residents people with disabilities and lower-income households are more at risk they may all have a harder time fleeing from a storm and may face more health risks if they can evacuate one thing we often miss the mental toll first responders who witness countless tragedies and residents are forced to flee are more vulnerable to anxiety and depression even those who have no history of mental illness to prepare communities can find out which neighborhoods people and resources are most at risk upgrade infrastructure such as roads and sanitary sewer systems and educate residents on how to stay safe during and after an extreme weather event such as avoiding driving in flooded areas as average temperatures rise across the globe air quality can also change that looks like longer and stronger pollen seasons which can trigger asthma attacks and allergies hotter temperatures and changing weather patterns which can make air pollution worse by increasing the density of dangerous particles and more frequent droughts that can lead to wildfires which release dangerous pollutants into the air young children people with asthma and respiratory conditions older adults and people with compromised immune systems are more at risk of being harmed work that can help communities prepare includes collaborating with community partners to set up health focused air quality alert systems and educating residents on how to check alerts to know when it's safe to exercise outside now let's talk about these little guys pests change to our climate can also mean more risk of diseases spread by pests like ticks mosquitoes fleas and rodents with higher average temperatures diseases transmitted by pests can multiply faster spread to more locations and infect people over longer periods of time each year Lyme disease West Nile virus Zika and hantavirus are examples of the resulting health risks people who spend extended time outdoors in areas where pest borne diseases are common our most at-risk communities can prepare by creating systems to track and assess population health effects and working with local partners on outreach strategies to help residents protect themselves such as staying out of certain areas and using insect repellent the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is empowering health departments across the United States to prevent and adapt to the local health risks of a changing climate through the climate ready states and cities initiative CDC's building resilience against climate effects or brace framework helps health department's plan a coordinated community response using brace communities are one identifying the range of climate impacts in the people locations and resources most at risk to quantifying the health problems associated with a changing climate three assessing science-based interventions to address those health problems for developing and overseeing community adaptation plans and five evaluating the process to learn more about what works for more information visit

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