November 8, 2023 – In the lead up to the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference (COP28), Forecasting Healthy Futures hosted an online panel discussion today with climate and health experts in the Latin American and Caribbean region, in the follow-up to the recent Latin America and Caribbean Climate Week (LACCW) 2023 in Panama City.
The panel, entitled “Leveraging Technological Advancements in Climate-Health Forecasting: Pathways to Adaptation, Resilience, and Sustainable Financing,” explored how technological advancements in climate-health forecasting, such as effective early warning systems and Artificial Intelligence (AI), play a significant role in climate change and health adaptation and resilience, in the Latin America and Caribbean region. Panelists also discussed the role of multisectoral collaboration and international alliances in strengthening health sector preparedness and resilience to climate-driven threats.
Here is what we heard:
"There is a critical disparity in the global response: regions that have contributed less to climate change are more vulnerable to extreme weather events like heatwaves and floods,” said Dr. Irene Torres, Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI). “The international community must recognize the importance of their support to address the unique adaptation challenges faced by Latin America and the Caribbean."
“The climate crisis is going to be measured in human lives and livelihoods,” said Emilia Carrera, Director in Health team at the Rockefeller Foundation. “Climate financing and philanthropic financing can help unlock resources to enable more solutions and funding."
“This is the first [COP] where we have a dedicated Health Day…that says a lot on how much this is a priority,” said Dr. Daniel Buss, Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Advisor. “Now that the time has come, we need to be ready to take action on climate change and health."
“As climate change continues to progress, we are likely to see more and more health challenges arise as a result,” said Dr. Justin Lana, Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) Senior Technical Advisor. “We must take care as a scientific and global health community to develop and utilize disease burden forecasting systems in tandem with the end-user - ministries of health – so to ensure we aren’t just predicting disease but also reducing transmission,” said Dr. Justin Lana, Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) Senior Technical Advisor. “
About Forecasting Healthy Futures
Forecasting Healthy Futures is a global coalition of leading health and technology organizations committed to mobilizing the political will, financial resources, and innovative solutions needed to protect global health gains from the threats posed by climate change. Malaria No More convenes and leads the consortium. Forecasting Health Futures’ partners include Reaching the Last Mile, Mohamed Bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence, the Global Institute for Disease Elimination (GLIDE), PATH, the Tableau Foundation, IBM’s Weather Company, and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). For more information, visit: www.ForecastingHealthyFutures.org.