WHO South-East Asia Journal of Public Health
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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 8-19

Impact of climate change on health and strategies for mitigation and adaptation

National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases, Kolkata, India

Correspondence Address:
Alok K Deb
National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases, Kolkata
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DOI: 10.4103/2224-3151.206918

PMID: 28612774

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Climate change and its negative impacts on health are now globally recognized. A wide variety of diseases and health conditions – ranging from heat and radiation-related illnesses to water and vector-borne diseases, under-nutrition, respiratory and cardiac problems, drowning, injuries and mental stress arising from extreme and sudden weather events and their resultant population displacements – all have been associated with various components of changing climate. However, the exact nature and extent of such impacts are yet to be firmly established since many other non-climate factors also produce or affect similar outcomes. This calls for more research specially from the underdeveloped countries, where such impacts are disproportionately more but reliable data are remarkably less. Recognizing the importance of human influences on global warming, almost all countries in the world have undertaken some kind of policies and measures to mitigate adverse climatic changes. Unfortunately, even without further addition of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in our climate, the amount of GHGs already released has the potential to continue the damages for many more decades to come. Thus, all countries should also place priorities in assessing their own vulnerabilities from climate change and take adaptive measures accordingly. As climate change exerts its impact simultaneously in many non-health sectors as well, this would require strong intersectoral cooperation at various levels.

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