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Health consequence scales for use in health impact assessments of climate change.

Brown H, Spickett J - Int J Environ Res Public Health (2014)

Bottom Line: This research focuses on the development of health consequence scales suited to assessing and comparing health effects associated with climate change and applied within a HIA framework.The design is based on a health effects pyramid with health measures expressed in orders of magnitude and linked to baseline population and health data.In addition, a simple visual framework that can be used to collate, compare and communicate the level of health risks associated with climate change has been developed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Public Health, World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health Impact Assessment, GPO Box U1987, Perth, WA 6845, Australia. h.brown@curtin.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
While health impact assessment (HIA) has typically been applied to projects, plans or policies, it has significant potential with regard to strategic considerations of major health issues facing society such as climate change. Given the complexity of climate change, assessing health impacts presents new challenges that may require different approaches compared to traditional applications of HIA. This research focuses on the development of health consequence scales suited to assessing and comparing health effects associated with climate change and applied within a HIA framework. This assists in setting priorities for adaptation plans to minimize the public health impacts of climate change. The scales presented in this paper were initially developed for a HIA of climate change in Perth in 2050, but they can be applied across spatial and temporal scales. The design is based on a health effects pyramid with health measures expressed in orders of magnitude and linked to baseline population and health data. The health consequence measures are combined with a measure of likelihood to determine the level of risk associated with each health potential health impact. In addition, a simple visual framework that can be used to collate, compare and communicate the level of health risks associated with climate change has been developed.

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Ratio of health metrics across health consequence levels.
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ijerph-11-09607-f002: Ratio of health metrics across health consequence levels.

Mentions: The second aspect of the scale is the ratio between health consequence levels. The UKCCRA used a 1:10 ratio between each level and this was considered appropriate for the proposed scales. While the UK scales included three consequence levels, the final scales have five levels, as used in both of the WA sources. Figure 2 shows the ratio of health consequence levels, beginning with an arbitrary baseline of 1 for ‘Low’ and increasing by a set factor of 10 at each level. For example, ‘Very High’ is a health consequence which is 100 times greater than a ‘Medium’ health consequence.


Health consequence scales for use in health impact assessments of climate change.

Brown H, Spickett J - Int J Environ Res Public Health (2014)

Ratio of health metrics across health consequence levels.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4199038&req=5

ijerph-11-09607-f002: Ratio of health metrics across health consequence levels.
Mentions: The second aspect of the scale is the ratio between health consequence levels. The UKCCRA used a 1:10 ratio between each level and this was considered appropriate for the proposed scales. While the UK scales included three consequence levels, the final scales have five levels, as used in both of the WA sources. Figure 2 shows the ratio of health consequence levels, beginning with an arbitrary baseline of 1 for ‘Low’ and increasing by a set factor of 10 at each level. For example, ‘Very High’ is a health consequence which is 100 times greater than a ‘Medium’ health consequence.

Bottom Line: This research focuses on the development of health consequence scales suited to assessing and comparing health effects associated with climate change and applied within a HIA framework.The design is based on a health effects pyramid with health measures expressed in orders of magnitude and linked to baseline population and health data.In addition, a simple visual framework that can be used to collate, compare and communicate the level of health risks associated with climate change has been developed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Public Health, World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health Impact Assessment, GPO Box U1987, Perth, WA 6845, Australia. h.brown@curtin.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
While health impact assessment (HIA) has typically been applied to projects, plans or policies, it has significant potential with regard to strategic considerations of major health issues facing society such as climate change. Given the complexity of climate change, assessing health impacts presents new challenges that may require different approaches compared to traditional applications of HIA. This research focuses on the development of health consequence scales suited to assessing and comparing health effects associated with climate change and applied within a HIA framework. This assists in setting priorities for adaptation plans to minimize the public health impacts of climate change. The scales presented in this paper were initially developed for a HIA of climate change in Perth in 2050, but they can be applied across spatial and temporal scales. The design is based on a health effects pyramid with health measures expressed in orders of magnitude and linked to baseline population and health data. The health consequence measures are combined with a measure of likelihood to determine the level of risk associated with each health potential health impact. In addition, a simple visual framework that can be used to collate, compare and communicate the level of health risks associated with climate change has been developed.

Show MeSH