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Indian J Occup Environ Med. 2007 Sep;11(3):113-5. doi: 10.4103/0019-5278.38460.

Climate change: The challenges for public health preparedness and response- An Indian case study.

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1
Dept. of Health, UNDP, UN-House-II, Orissa, India.

Abstract

Extremes weather changes surpassing their usual statistical ranges and tumbling records in India could be an early warning bell of global warming. Extreme weather events like the recent record setting in western Indian city of Mumbai or all time high fatalities due to the heat wave in southern Indian states or increasing vulnerability of easten Indian states to flood could all be a manifestation of climate change in the Asian subcontinent. While the skeptics may be inclined to dismiss these events as simple local aberrations, when viewed in an epidemiological paradigm in terms of person, time and space couple with frequency, intensity and fatalities, it could well be an early manifestation of climate change. Global warming poses serious challenge to the health sector and hence warrants emergency health preparedness and response. Climate-sensitive diseases are among the largest global killers, hence major brunt of global climate change in terms of adverse health impact will be mostly borne by poor and developing countries in Asia, given the levels of poverty, nutional levels and poor public health infrastructure.

KEYWORDS:

Climate change; global warming; health emergency; health impact; preparedness

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