CEUL111420 - Forward for Health: Building Climate Justice Solutions in Wisconsin

Offered By
University Of Wisconsin-Madison School Of Nursing

5159 Signe Skott Cooper Hall
701 Highland Avenue
Madison, WI  53705  USA

Course Description:

Course Description
This learning experience will empower and prepare health professionals to meet this critical moment. A spectrum of interprofessional healthcare workers and community leaders will share lessons of how the climate crisis is affecting their patients and communities in both rural and urban Wisconsin settings. Through interactive panels, stories, and networking, attendees will meet healthcare workers from across the state that are taking healthy climate action to improve wellbeing.

Action today isn’t solely about avoiding a future health crisis. The historic passing of the Inflation Reduction Act builds momentum for Wisconsin families to benefit from safer drinking water, cleaner air, healthier homes, active transit, and more resilient health systems immediately. Together, healthcare workers can create a resilient and just tomorrow for the Badger state

Statement of Need
In 2021, 239 medical journals issued an unprecedented joint statement calling upon health professionals and health institutions to take emergency action on climate change to protect health (BMJ, 2021). This call to action emphasized that human-caused warming is unequivocal, and its health impacts are already measurable.

The high cost of fossil fuels on human life and suffering is shouldered by ethnic and racial groups already burdened by systemic racism, low-income communities, pregnant individuals, outdoor workers, those living with chronic conditions or disabilities, children, and adults over 65. However, that also means that transitioning to clean energy and other climate solutions can be a major opportunity to lessen health disparities (Patz, 2016).

The broad and far-reaching consequences of the climate crisis on health in Wisconsin make continued education on this topic critical for all members of the interprofessional health team.

Polling published within the Lancet Medical Journal, illustrates that over 70% of health professionals expressed a need for additional climate health resources and organizing to enable them to act (Kotcher et al., 2021). Similarly, in a study of the Wisconsin health sector in 2022, showed that professionals perceive sustainability programs as “too costly.” And the largest barrier to their action was that they “did not know what to do” (CHANT, 2022).


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