Climate change affects the health and well being of our patients in Northern BC. Many determinants of health including disease, mental health, housing, income, access to health services and physical environments are negatively impacted by climate change.
Greenhouse gas emissions are a metric to assess how an organization, sector or country contributes to climate change. The health care system in Canada is responsible for 4.6% of Canada’s total greenhouse gas emissions (1).
At Willow Obstetrics and Gynecology we continue to try and reduce our carbon footprint and become more sustainable in our practice. We recognize that we contribute to climate change, and therefore to negative health impacts on our patients. We are phasing out disposables, using telehealth and thereby reducing travel to and from our office, and strive to use best practices, guidelines and evidence based medicine to avoid investigations and treatment that are unnecessary and do not provide benefit to our patients.
Akin to becoming more sustainable, is a having an awareness of the benefits that spending in time with nature can have on our health. There is a body of literature supporting the health benefits of spending time in nature, as well as spurring an awareness and desire to preserve it. Whether a riverside walk, reading in a park, or going on a multi-day trekking adventure, spending time in nature has many health benefits. Your physician may discuss this with you as a tool to improve your health. More information can be found at the website below.
Countdown on Climate Change Briefing for Canadian Policy Makers, December 2019