Climate transforms health: competence building in the health professions

Climate change has grown to become the global challenge of our time. The LANCET, the oldest and best-known medical journal, called it "the biggest threat for health in the 21st century" in 2009 and added in 2015, "but it could be the biggest chance, too." The necessary transformation toward a carbon-neutral society can be very health-promoting. Healthcare workers play a central role in identifying and communicating synergies between planetary and personal health.

WHO, the World Medical Association, and others call for a focus in education, training, and continuing education for all healthcare workers. Despite recent national as well as international reports that focus on this interconnectedness (including APCC Special Report Health, 2nd Progress Report of the Austrian Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change), this has not yet been taken up in a structured way in Austria.

On September 21, 2022, the Climate Change Centre Austria (CCCA) together with the University of Applied Sciences Carinthia, Gesundheit Österreich GmbH (GÖG), the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna (BOKU) and Health for Future (H4F) Austria with the support of the Climate and Energy Fund and the BMK invited to the dialogue event "Climate changes health: competence building in the health professions" at the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna.

It was a pleasure to bring so many people together and to work with you on the so important topic "Climate changes health".
Program with all contributors and discussion topics.

The wrap-up including photo protocol of the Open Space groups is available online here.

As an output of the workshop, Health for Future Austria wrote an Open Letter on the strategic implementation of climate competencies in the education and training of all health professionals.

Here you can find the Open Letter.

We hope that this event has made a contribution to anchoring climate competencies in the health professions and that we have made a step forward through this exchange and networking.