Towards climate resilient and environmentally sustainable health care facilities

Carlos Corvalan*, Elena Villalobos Prats, Aderita Sena, Diarmid Campbell-Lendrum, Josh Karliner, Antonella Riso, Susan Wilburn, Scott Slotterback, Megha Rathi, Ruth Stringer, Peter Berry, Sally Edwards, Paddy Enright, Arabella Hayter, Guy Howard, Josh Lapitan, Maargaret Montgomery, Annette Prüss-Ustün, Linda Varangu, Salvatore Vinci

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Abstract

The aim of building climate resilient and environmentally sustainable health care facilities is: a) to enhance their capacity to protect and improve the health of their target communities in an unstable and changing climate; and b) to empower them to optimize the use of resources and minimize the release of pollution and waste into the environment. Such health care facilities contribute to high quality of care and accessibility of services, and by helping reduce facility costs also ensure better affordability. They are an important component of universal health coverage. Action is needed in at least four areas which are fundamental requirements for providing safe and quality care: having adequate numbers of skilled human resources, with decent working conditions, empowered and informed to respond to these environmental challenges; sustainable and safe management of water, sanitation and health care waste; sustainable energy services; and appropriate infrastructure and technologies, including all the operations that allow for the efficient functioning of a health care facility. Importantly, this work contributes to promote actions to ensure that health care facilities are constantly and increasingly strengthened and continue to be efficient and responsive to improve health and contribute to reducing inequities and vulnerability within their local settings.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 26 Nov 2020

Keywords

  • climate resilience
  • environmental sustainability
  • climate change and health
  • health care facilities

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