Nepal | January 23, 2020

Hospitals’ role to combat climate change stressed

Himalayan News Service

We need to reduce environmental impact of our current clinical pathways

Kathmandu, November 18

Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology, in collaboration with World Health Organisation, today organised a national workshop on Environment Sustained Eye Care, in the capital.

Speakers at the event shed light on various issues related to climate change.

“There is huge impact of climate change on human health such as heat-related illnesses and deaths, cardiovascular failure, respiratory allergies, asthma, diarrhoeal diseases, malaria, dengue and encephalitis. Climate change also leads to change in vector ecology, air pollution, forced migration, conflict along with mental health impacts,” said Tanya Harris, global manager procurement/sustainability officer at The Fred Hollows Foundation during her webminar presentation at the workshop from Melbourne.

Shedding light on reduction of carbon footprint and developing resilience strategies, reduce, reuse and recycle to help prevent environment degradation and climate change, the speakers highlighted how hospitals have been affecting the environment and also talked about how they should manage hospital waste to fight climate change.

At the event, the speakers also discussed the government policy, impact assessment, vulnerability and adaptation initiatives for climate change, sustainable procurement, climate change and health facilities during the event.

They stressed how eye health specialists can influence and improve sustainable procurement and waste management. Stressing reuse, reduce and recycle methods, the speakers shared that effective national policies be made to combat climate change.

The speakers also shed light on climate change effects in eye health ailments. Haphazard use of natural resources have been a major cause for climate change.

“We need to reduce environmental impact of our current clinical pathways. We must set our goals to set out cost and set carbon footprint,” said Dr Andy Cassels-Brown, global medical director for Fred Hollows Foundation Australia.

The speakers at the event focused on climate change, rising temperature, heat waves, sea level rise, melting ice, ocean acidification and change in rainfall pattern, among other issues related with climate change.

“Hospitals should manage waste in a proper way. We should work on reducing pollution,” said Bhagirath Baniya, chief, Public Relations of Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology.

“The goal of our hospital is to reduce waste, keep hospital clean and green, reduce methane emissions from the decomposition of waste at landfill site.

A scientific study on climate change had stated that climate was a rapid phenomenon in many countries across the globe.

A version of this article appears in print on November 19, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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