Past experience on inter-sectoral matters, such as tobacco control, has shown that sustained advocacy from a unified health sector has the potential to drive transformational change in policy and public opinion. The significant contribution of environmental risk factors for ill health in India has been highlighted through the work of the Global Burden of Disease comparative risk assessment exercise. India faces high burden of diseases because of lack of environmental awareness and degradation with issues like air pollution, access to clean water, and occupational exposures feature among the top ten risks to public health. With air pollution alone contributing to over 2 million deaths and 41 million DALYs on an annual basis, a unified voice of the health sector is imperative to tackle the growing environmental burden of disease.
Health Care Without Harm’s (HCWH) Global Green and Healthy Hospitals (GGHH) network has more the 742 members in 41 countries fostering to reduce the environmental footprint and promote public and environmental health in hospitals, health care facilities, health systems, and health organizations. The members of GGHH are transforming the health sector for a healthy and sustainable future. We believe that health sector leadership on energy, water, waste, chemicals and other similar issues through the adoption of sound and sustainable practices can show the way forward in India.
To this end, the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) in partnership with Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) established Health and Environment Leadership Platform (H.E.L.P.).
Platform focus on:
- Showcasing Leadership in health systems by reducing its environmental and energy burden. Advocating for the importance of inter-sectoral, collaborative policymaking to address the health impacts of environmental pollution.
- Building Capacity of physicians on the health impacts of environmental pollution.