How to Build Resilient Health Systems to Mitigate Health Threats due to Climate Change



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Session Description:

This global celebration also marks the founding of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1948, when the First World Health Assembly was held. The Assembly decided to celebrate 7 April of each year, taking effect from 1950, as World Health Day. Seen as an opportunity to draw worldwide attention to a subject of major importance to global health, the WHO organizes international, regional, and local events on the Day related to a particular theme. This year’s theme for World Health Day is entitled “Our Planet, Our Health”, and it has the aim to call for urgent actions that will keep humans and the planet healthy having navigated through a pandemic, an increasingly polluted planet, and a rise of diseases that include cancer, asthma, and heart disease, which will promote the creation of societies that are focused on their well-being. It is no coincidence that this is the theme of the year given that the WHO estimates that, across the world, on a yearly basis, there are more than 13 million deaths caused by avoidable environmental causes and this including the climate crisis which poses the single largest health threat humanity faces especially on their health.

Join This Dynamic Discussion

This month, the #AskProfAgnes Equity Webinar series, together with the UGHE the department of Community Based Education will host a panel of prominent experts from diverse backgrounds and regions who will share evidence of the importance of building resilient health systems from primary health care onwards that are ready and prepared to respond to such effects of climate change in a sustainable way.

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Dr. Florence Akiki Bitalabeho

Assistant Professor and Head of the Godley-StGoar Department of Community Health

Florence Akiki’s  full bio can be found on the UGHE website here



Prof. Agnes Binagwaho

Vice Chancellor, University of Global Health Equity 

Prof. Agnes Binagwaho’s full bio can be found on the UGHE website here.



Dr. Tarun Weeramanthri

President, Public Health Association of Australia, Adjunct Professor, School of Population and Global Health, University of Western Australia

Tarun is a trained specialist in internal medicine and public health, with a Ph.D. in social medicine. He was Chief Health Officer in Western Australia (WA) from 2008 to 2018, and in the Northern Territory from 2004 to 2007.

In 2014, he was awarded the Sidney Sax Medal for his contribution to public health in Australia. From 2019-2020, he conducted a statutory Inquiry into the Impacts of Climate Change on Health in WA.

Dr. Corneille Killy Ntihabose

Head of Clinical and Public Health Services Department

Dr. Corneille NTIHABOSE is the Head of the Clinical and Public Health Services Department in the Ministry of Health and has been working in health delivery for 8 years. Prior to his current position, Dr. Ntihabose was Director-General of Byumba Hospital, led the viral hepatitis treatment desk at Rwanda Biomedical Center, with a strong focus on scaling up Hepatitis B& C care and Treatment in a more efficient and sustainable way. He has also held leadership positions in various hospitals he worked for as a Clinical Director and chair of different committees. Dr. Ntihabose earned his medical degree in the National University of Rwanda and did Master of public Health specialization in Epidemiology from Mount Kenya University. He has published articles and abstracts presented at both national and international conferences, as author and co-author, relating to HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis and global ear health, and maternal & child health

Ramon San Pascual

Executive Director, Health Care Without Harm

Ramon San Pascual was a faculty member at PUP College of Social Sciences and Development from 2015 to 2016, where he taught health economics. In 2015, he served as the head of the Philippine Department of Health’s Legislative Liaison Division. He was also the Logistics Consultant for the Department of Health’s RPRH Law National Implementation Team. He served as Executive Director of the Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development from 2012 to 2015. He previously served as Executive Director of the Philippine Legislators’ Committee on Population and Development (PLCPD) and as a Professor at the University of the Philippines’ Population Institute. He earned a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington. From 2003 to 2004, he was a Gates-Packard Fellow at the University of Washington’s Population Leadership Program in Seattle, Washington.

Michael Jenkins

Founder and CEO, Forest Trends Association

From 1989-1999, Michael was the Associate Director for the Global Security and Sustainability Program of the MacArthur Foundation. In 1998, Michael was in a joint appointment as a Senior Forestry Advisor to the World Bank. Before entering the MacArthur Foundation, he worked for three years as an agroforester in Haiti with the USAID Agroforestry Outreach Program. Previous to that, he worked with a Washington-based development organization, Appropriate Technology International, as a technical advisor. In the late 1970s, Michael was a Peace Corps volunteer in Paraguay working in agriculture, apiculture, and forestry projects. Michael holds a Master’s of Forest Science from Yale University, and has contributed to and authored numerous books/publications, including The Business of Sustainable Forestry: Strategies for an Industry in Transition and Capital Markets and Sustainable Forestry: Opportunities for Investment. In 2010 he received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, and in 2015 the Social Entrepreneur Award from the Schwab Foundation.