Sensing the impact of climate change on human health, the state health department has asked the medical college and hospitals to prepare a databank of the kind of diseases related to climate change and do proper research on the issue.
Climate change was clearly visible even this year in Bihar as winter season shifted till first week of February which had never been experienced earlier. Almost all the places in the state are witnessing hotter summers as well as colder winters and unpredictable rainfall. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), climate change is expected to cause additional 2.50 lakh deaths per year from malnutrition, diarrhoea and heat stress between 2030 and 2050.
Paediatrician Dr Arun Shah, who has done extensive research in health field, said human health would definitely be affected by climate change. “One can see that summers are now getting hotter and similarly winters are getting colder. Places which never saw heavy rainfall are getting flooded,” Dr Shah said, adding prolonged rainfall leads to mosquito menace and causes malaria, dengue and encephalitis. “Malaria continues to be a killer disease across the world. All these ailments are linked to climate change,” he added.
Dr Shah said depletion of ozone and greenhouse gases due to climate change have a very bad impact on human health.
Former state IMA president Dr Rajiv Ranjan Prasad said the increase in carcinogens in atmosphere has led to rise in cancer cases. “Climate change forces viruses to mutate and affect human health,” Dr Prasad said, adding coronavirus outbreak was also indirectly related to climate change. Health experts have warned against excessive use of petroleum products, coal, air conditioners and refrigerators which emit chlorofluorocarbons and pose a threat to human health.