NCCHCA Resolution to Support Efforts to Curb Climate Change (approved by NCCHCA board on March 27, 2019)
WHEREAS, the mission of NCCHCA is to promote and support patient governed community health care organizations and the populations they serve; and
WHEREAS, scientific evidence for man-made causes of climate change has been overwhelmingly demonstrated 2 ; and
WHEREAS, the southeastern United States is currently experiencing increased coastal flooding, storm intensity, summer heat waves, poor air quality days in cities, wild fires, and vector-borne diseases; and
WHEREAS, recent Hurricanes Matthew (2016), Florence (2018) caused significant facility, operational losses and patient injury across North Carolina community health centers; and
WHEREAS, climate change threatens the fundamentals that sustain life and health—fresh water, food, clean air, shelter, and security endangering the health and sustainability of the communities we serve. 3
WHEREAS, low-income communities are disproportionately affected by the health impacts of climate change; and
WHEREAS, there are less than 30 years to make significant changes in human practices that contribute to green-house gases and global warming; and
WHEREAS, community health centers are authorized under the US Public Health Act, and are key primary care delivery sites within the US public health infrastructure; and
WHEREAS, the Health Center Program Statute: Section 330 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. §254b) subsection (b)(2) authorizes health centers to provide additional services necessary for the adequate support of primary health services including environmental health services, including- (i) the detection and alleviation of unhealthful conditions associated with (I) water supply; (II) chemical and pesticide exposures; (III) air quality; and
WHEREAS, health centers are trusted partners with our patients and community to improve the health of our service area; and
WHEREAS, On October 29, 2018 Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No.80 North Carolina’s Commitment to Address Climate Change and Transition to a Clean Energy Economy; and
THEREFORE, LET IT BE RESOLVED THAT the NCCHCA Board of Directors hereby joins the public health community in calling upon local, state, and federal policy makers to adopt swift and effective legislation, considerate to the needs of low-income and vulnerable populations, to curb climate change.
We commit to:
- stewardship of our natural resources used in the operations of our facilities and services; and
- collaboration with federal, state, and local officials in identifying and implementing efforts to prevent and mitigate the effects of climate change at the local level.