2022 Climate Health Equity Conference to Be Held November 12

Virtual Conference to Discuss the Impact of Heat and Air Pollution in the Southeastern United States

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(Columbia, SC) – The South Carolina Health Professionals for Climate Action, South Carolina Chapter of National Medical Association – Palmetto Medical, Dental, and Pharmaceutical Association (PMDPA), Georgia Clinicians for Climate Action and Georgia State Medical Association – National Medical Association Affiliate, will hold the Climate Health Equity: The Effects of Heat & Air Pollution in the Southeast Conference on Saturday, November 12, 2022, via Zoom from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. The conference is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Attendees will engage in discussion with health leaders about the impact of heat and air pollution in the southeastern United States.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), climate change, together with other natural and human-made health stressors, influences human health and disease in numerous ways. Public health may be affected by disruptions of physical, biological and ecological systems. Ground-level ozone is associated with many health problems, such as diminished lung function, increased hospital admissions and emergency room visits for asthma, and increased premature deaths. Heat waves are also associated with increased hospital admissions for cardiovascular, kidney, and respiratory disorders.

“Climate health in the southeastern region of our country has changed immensely over the past decades,” said Gerald Wilson, MD, Chairman of the Board, PMDPA. “Our objective is to educate individuals about the current health climate as well as potential and existing health threats. We aim to create awareness about local, regional and national policies on climate change and its impact on communities of color.”

“In South Carolina and the Southeast in general, we are already witnessing the catastrophic health impacts of climate change.  Dangerous heat waves are getting worse every summer and poor air quality makes it more difficult for people to breathe, especially children, elderly, and those with chronic health issues,” said Hayley Guilkey, MD, chair, South Carolina Health Professionals for Climate Action. “We are holding this conference to educate health professionals and others about these serious impacts and to help us all learn how we can take action.

“Clean air is health care. Take asthma for example. Air pollution is associated with the development and worsening of asthma, a lung condition which directly impacts around 10 percent of Georgia’s children. Improving air quality can result in respiratory health gains,” said Evan Brockman, MD, MPH, FAAP, chair, Georgia Clinicians for Climate Action. “My hope is that this conference will energize health professionals and others to support climate friendly policies which improve air quality for all of us, and especially for those who bear an unfair share of the burden.”

Conference speakers include:

●      Dr. Burnett W. Gallman, Gastroenterologist, Dorn VA Medical Center

●      Dr. Jairo Garcia, Lecturer, School of City & Regional Planning, Georgia Tech

●      Dr. Jennifer Runkle, Environmental Epidemiologist, North Carolina Institute for Climate Studies

Registration now available on Eventbrite at https://2022ClimateHealthConference.eventbrite.com. For more information, contact Khali Gallman at 803.922.5310.

The MinorityEye is a news and information aggregator that curates the voices, thoughts and perspectives of minority writers, bloggers, authors, reporters, columnists, pundits, consultants and thought leaders as well as those who write about minorities and issues that impact people and communities of color.

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