About the Discussion

Health Care and the Climate Crisis: What Can You Do?

The consequences of the climate crisis are both clearly evident (e.g., record heat, intense storms, and raging forest fires) and less obvious (e.g., rising pollen levels and decreased nutritional quality of food). Have you considered how the climate crisis affects your health and the health of others, including your patients, vulnerable populations, and global health? The health impact of the climate crisis is not borne equally. What changes have you noticed in your practice, hospital, and community? NEJM Resident 360 has invited a panel of experts to discuss practical actions to address the effects of the climate crisis on individual health, clinical practice, and health care delivery. 

Some questions we plan to address:

  • How is climate change affecting the medical conditions of patients in your practice?  
  • Has the climate crisis caused disruption at your institution or hospital?
  • How can we add a “climate crisis lens” to clinical practice and care delivery systems to improve health and resiliency? How can we share best practices with others?
  • How do we educate and empower patients to protect their health from the effects of the climate crisis? Do you talk to patients about the climate crisis and its effects on health, and if so, how?

The ultimate treatment is prevention, by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Are you taking action to reduce your own carbon emissions or that of your practice or hospital? How can you be part of the solution?