The Department of Health Sciences at California State University, East Bay is sponsoring a special issue of the Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics on the legal and ethical issues facing healthcare and public health systems as they wrestle with the challenges of climate change. The issue will be published in December 2020.
The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on global warming has indicated that dire consequences, such as sea-level rise, food shortages, extreme heat events, and wildfires will occur much sooner than previously forecasted. Climate change impacts human health through three pathways: direct impacts, ecosystem-mediated impacts, and human institution-mediated impacts. Direct impacts include heat waves, wildfires, and extreme weather. Ecosystem-mediated impacts include changes in vector habitats. Human institution-medicated impacts include issues such undernutrition, and systemic violence. Each of these pathways has specific implications for the public health and healthcare system either in immediate health impacts or long-term worsening of health burdens.
While political action has resulted in a patchwork of policy measures to address these issues, little has been done to increase adaptive measures in response to the potentially rapid changes we will see with our climate or to address the broader systemic challenges to governance, regulation, policy, and ethics in the health care and public health systems. The effect of these disruptions on human health is unlike any other challenge facing humans and represent the need for a fundamental shift in the values and expectations around human health in an environment of constrained resources.
We seek abstracts that address the following and related questions:
1. What are the short and long-term legal and policy challenges facing the health care system in adapting to both the long and short-term implications of climate change?
2. What are the short and long-term legal and policy challenges facing the public health system in adapting to the implications of climate change?
3. How do shared expectations and definitions of health need to change in the face of climate disruption?
4. What models of governance and regulation can be applied and adapted to the health care system and public health system to address the fundamental disruptions expected in climate disruption?
5. What are the legal and regulatory implications of greenhouse gas mitigation efforts in the health care sector and its associated industries?
6. What are the legal and regulatory challenges in ensuring health equity in the context of climate disruption?
7. What are the major bioethical issues raised by anthropogenic climate change?
8. How can health care and public health systems incorporate long-term forecasting of climate risks into planning and regulation?
9. What are the health care financing issues associated with long-term disruptions related to climate?
The issue will be edited by Jason A. Smith, Chandrakala Ganesh, and Michael Schmeltz. The Department may also host a symposium around the issue in 2020.
Please submit abstracts of 300 - 500 words to email@example.com
November 30, 2019 - Abstracts due
December 15, 2019 - Notification of Accepted Abstracts
Issue Publication Date - Winter 2020 (December 2020)