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Pathways of Climate-Resilient Health Systems in Bangladesh

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Publication date8/02/2019
Host publicationConfronting Climate Change in Bangladesh
EditorsSaleemul Huq, Jeffrey Chow, Adrian Fenton, Clare Stott, Julia Taub, Helena Wright
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages25
ISBN (Electronic)9783030052379
ISBN (Print)9783030052362
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Publication series

NameThe Anthropocene: Politik—Economics—Society—Science
ISSN (Print)2367-4024
ISSN (Electronic)2367-4032


Climate change is a complex phenomenon that will have a range of both anticipated and unexpected direct and indirect effects. The IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) affirms that recent decades have seen warming air and ocean temperatures, changing rainfall patterns, variations in the frequency and intensity of several extreme events including droughts, floods and storms and rising sea levels. The changing climate will adversely affect the health of human populations. These include primary or direct effects (e.g. increased deaths due to extreme weather events like cyclones); secondary or indirect effects (e.g. increased health problems due to disease vectors, such as malaria-carrying mosquitos and contaminated food and water); and tertiary or long-term effects (e.g. distractions for health and social services). This chapter provides an introduction to the relationship between climate change and human health, using the country-specific example of Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a low-lying country in which extreme climatic events are a common phenomenon. With the objective of providing an overview of the likely health impacts caused by climate change, the chapter examines the relationship between three distinct climatic events – flooding, salinity intrusion and drought – in relation to human health. In Bangladesh, issues such as poor water quality, unhygienic environmental conditions and poor sanitation, exacerbate the impact of climate-sensitive diseases (diseases of which transmission is linked to climatic and weather conditions). This chapter provides a foundation for studying the relationship between the climatic characteristics of the study area, climate-sensitive diseases and other anthropogenic phenomena. It demonstrates the pathways of climate-resilient health systems in Bangladesh.