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Climate Change and Public Health Policy: Translating the Science
Centre for Zoonoses and Environmental Microbiology, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, P.O. Box 1, Bilthoven 3720 BA, The Netherlands
Department of Infectious Disease Control, Municipal Public Health Service Rotterdam-Rijnmond, P.O. Box 70032, Rotterdam 3000 LP, The Netherlands
Environmental Research Group Oxford, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS, UK
Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS, UK
These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 November 2013; in revised form: 25 November 2013 / Accepted: 27 November 2013 / Published: 19 December 2013
Abstract: Public health authorities are required to prepare for future threats and need predictions of the likely impact of climate change on public health risks. They may get overwhelmed by the volume of heterogeneous information in scientific articles and risk relying purely on the public opinion articles which focus mainly on global warming trends, and leave out many other relevant factors. In the current paper, we discuss various scientific approaches investigating climate change and its possible impact on public health and discuss their different roles and functions in unraveling the complexity of the subject. It is not our objective to review the available literature or to make predictions for certain diseases or countries, but rather to evaluate the applicability of scientific research articles on climate change to evidence-based public health decisions. In the context of mosquito borne diseases, we identify common pitfalls to watch out for when assessing scientific research on the impact of climate change on human health. We aim to provide guidance through the plethora of scientific papers and views on the impact of climate change on human health to those new to the subject, as well as to remind public health experts of its multifactorial and multidisciplinary character.
Keywords: climate change; public health; scientific evidence; pitfalls; mosquito borne diseases
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Braks, M.; van Ginkel, R.; Wint, W.; Sedda, L.; Sprong, H. Climate Change and Public Health Policy: Translating the Science. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11, 13-29.
Braks M, van Ginkel R, Wint W, Sedda L, Sprong H. Climate Change and Public Health Policy: Translating the Science. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2014; 11(1):13-29.
Braks, Marieta; van Ginkel, Rijk; Wint, William; Sedda, Luigi; Sprong, Hein. 2014. "Climate Change and Public Health Policy: Translating the Science." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 11, no. 1: 13-29.