New Delhi: In an initiative announced at COP28, the World Bank unveiled its Climate and Health Programme to combat the escalating health risks triggered by climate change in low- and middle-income countries. According to a press release by the World Bank, with projections indicating at least 21 million additional deaths by 2050 due to climate-related health hazards, the programme aims to fortify health systems, particularly in vulnerable regions of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. The initiative involves comprehensive strategies, including assessing climate and health vulnerabilities, bolstering investments in resilient health systems, and mobilizing funds for immediate action.
The World Bank emphasises the urgency of addressing five key health risks–extreme heat, stunting, diarrhoea, malaria, and dengue–that could claim millions of lives within the next three decades. Mamta Murthi, Vice President for Human Development at the World Bank, highlighted the programme’s significance in breaking the cycle of ill health and poverty caused by climate change.
Ms Murthi said,
Climate change amplifies health risks, creating a cycle of ill health and poverty with far-reaching consequences for human capital development. Through the Climate and Health Program, the World Bank will use its knowledge and financing to help countries address health risks stemming from climate change, work across related sectors, and bring together partners to maximize financing and harmonize investments and actions.
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The Climate and Health Program seeks to generate evidence, increase financing for tailored solutions, and forge strong partnerships with entities such as the World Health Organization, Gavi, The Global Fund, and foundations.
Notably, the World Bank will co-convene a Development Bank Working Group for Climate-Health Finance to align and maximize investments.
The USD 34 billion health portfolio, active in over 100 countries, will focus on enhancing surveillance and early warning systems, climate-proofing health facilities, and strengthening the capacity of health workers.
As the climate crisis continues to impact the well-being of global populations, the World Bank’s commitment to addressing this paramount health challenge underscores the need for immediate, collective action.
The success of the Climate and Health Program hinges on today’s decisions, shaping the health outcomes of current and future generations.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which in its Season 10 is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Ayushmann Khurrana. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ population, indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In a world post COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental well-being, self-care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.