Integrating Climate Change into the Clinical Setting

Director Linda Rudolph, MD, MPH

The overarching goal of this project is to increase health care professional and clinic staff awareness and knowledge about climate change and health, and to foster and support communication about climate change and health with patients and their families in the clinical setting, with an emphasis on the health co-benefits of climate action.

Over the nine month period of this planning grant, our project aims to develop a well-researched plan for engaging and training California physicians and clinic staff, with an emphasis on community clinics and safety net populations, to address climate in the clinical encounter, in the clinical practice setting, and with peers in physician and staff meetings. We will conduct an assessment of strategies that have been utilized to integrate other environmental messages into clinical settings and explore the feasibility of incorporating climate content in the clinical encounter. We will develop educational materials and information on climate change — for providers and patients — that could be appropriately and relevantly used in specific clinical settings (e.g. pediatrics, asthma clinic). We will focus on community clinics serving primarily low-income clients in disadvantaged and vulnerable communities.