When: October 5, 3:00-4:00pm ET

Where: Zoom

Language: English

Register Here

Climate change is a healthcare emergency.

In the Arctic, rapid warming is exacerbating pre-existing health inequities and introducing novel threats to health, particularly among rural and Indigenous populations. These threats include injury and death due to extreme weather events, reduced access to traditional foods, reduced mobility, mental and social stress due to loss of community and culture, and increased exposure to infectious diseases and toxins from thawing permafrost.

Urgent action is needed to protect the health and wellbeing of Arctic residents – and because threats to human health in Arctic populations are an indicator of threats to come in more temperate latitudes. Yet national and international policymakers have been slow to recognize the linkages between climate change and population health. 

This seminar will highlight the efforts of physicians from Massachusetts General Hospital’s Division of Space, Ecological, Arctic, and Resource Limited Medicine to create a program of health monitoring with colleagues in the Northwest Arctic Borough of Alaska to quantify and qualify the impacts of climate change on human health through the lens of emergency medical care. The project, led by Arctic Initiative Faculty Affiliate Dr. N. Stuart Harris and nominated for the prestigious 2023 Frederik Paulsen Arctic Academic Action Award, seeks to inform scientific and policy priorities for protecting the health of Arctic populations in a warming world and to create a scalable model for assessing the health impacts of climate change that could be deployed to healthcare settings nationally and internationally.


Dr. N. Stuart Harris, Founder and Chief of Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Wilderness Medicine

Dr. Rob Inglis, Emergency Physician at University of Vermont Medical Center

Lucas Trout, Lecturer on Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Sayaqagvik Deirector at Maniilaq Social Medicine

The seminar will be recorded and available to watch on the Arctic Initiative’s YouTube channel.

To request accommodations or for questions about access, please contact Elizabeth Hanlon (ehanlon@hks.harvard.edu) in advance of the session.