King County is dedicated to building innovative and intersectional climate solutions that support community resilience and limit the climate burden on frontline communities. The County’s 2020 Strategic Climate Action Plan (SCAP), is a five-year plan for the County’s climate actions, integrating climate change into all areas of County operations. Under this plan, Public Health – Seattle & King County (PHSKC) is committed to improving equity and building community resiliency, while considering social justice as first and foremost in its climate policy and planning. In addition, PHSKC works with the King County Hospitals for a Healthier Community (HHC) collaborative to jointly produce a King County Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) report. While prior reports have not included the impact of climate change on public health, PHSKC will be working in partnership with hospital members to identify climate change-related data to incorporate in the upcoming 2024/2025 CHNA report.
King County will partner with FUSE to explore and identify opportunities to align work on climate change and health equity across the healthcare sector. The FUSE Executive Fellow will: collect and analyze data around climate change’s impact on community health and equity, engage with interested healthcare partners (local hospital/health systems), and develop a strategic framework for healthcare systems to mitigate the impact of climate change. This may also include engaging with the 10 hospital/health systems that are members of the HHC to explore strategies and planning related to climate change and the county-wide CHNA report that informs each hospital/health system’s individual health improvement strategies. Ultimately, this work will help King County actualize its goal of reducing public health risks associated with climate change, thereby creating more resilient and equitable communities.