Good Day BIO readers know climate change is a public health issue—and now, the Biden administration is officially recognizing it, too.
The news: The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has launched the Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE), which “addresses the impact of climate change on the health of the American people.”
OCCHE is tasked with:
- “Identifying communities with disproportionate exposures to climate hazards and vulnerable populations.”
- “Addressing health disparities exacerbated by climate impacts to enhance community health resilience.”
- “Promoting and translating research on public health benefits of multi-sectoral climate actions.”
- “Assisting with regulatory efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and criteria air pollution throughout the health care sector, including participating suppliers and providers.”
- And a lot more.
The details: OCCHE will be “small to start,” reports POLITICO. “HHS has requested $3 million from Congress to fund it next year, with plans to draw on existing resources until then.” It will be led by Dr. John Balbus, Senior Advisor for Public Health at NIH.
Read more about it in the Wall Street Journal.
“The connection between human and environmental health has never been clearer or more dramatic,” said BIO President and CEO Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath last year on the I am BIO Podcast. Listen to her conversation with Chirfi Guindo, EVP and Head of Global Product Strategy and Commercialization at Biogen, about the industry’s vital role in creating a more equitable and sustainable future.