Climate & Health Science Policy Fellowship

The Living Closer Foundation physician GME Fellowship in Climate & Health Science Policy is a 12-24 month program hosted by the University of Colorado Department of Emergency Medicine. Our program seeks to empower physicians through education, policy training and successful communication skills to characterize the impact of these changes on our collective health. As the first non-governmental fellowship of its kind, we endeavor to create outstanding clinical leaders in the emerging field of climate change and heath.

For a detailed description, please see here for our Fellowship overview in Academic Emergency Medicine Education & Training.

To be a steward for human well being is to be an advocate for a safe and stable environment. Physicians have been conspicuously absent in the larger policy debates of environmental change and health, yet are the most well-respected and effective science communicators in society. Our Climate Change initiative seeks to enhance the knowledge and communication skills of physicians so that they may more effectively convey the health risks associated with climate variability and change and advocate for multi-sectoral solutions.

We are pleased to offer the Living Closer Foundation physician GME Fellowship in Climate and Health Science Policy.

As the first non-governmental fellowship of its kind, we endeavor to empower training physicians, through innovative projects and experiential learning, to become highly credible leaders and spokespersons in clinical, basic science, and policy settings.

This 12-24 month Fellowship is based in the University of Colorado Department of Emergency Medicine*, and entails Fellow placement with our principal partners at the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the TH Chan Harvard School of Public Health and locally through the University of Colorado Consortium on Climate and Health. The Living Closer Foundation has underwritten the Fellowship and provided invaluable support to its mission.

We believe this novel fellowship serves as a powerful demonstration of an expanded role for physician advocates in a time when public concerns about health and climate are growing.

For further information or questions, contact: emedwilderness@ucdenver.edu.

Fellowship includes the following:

  • Mentorship and guidance from principals listed above
  • Travel stipend for time spent at NIH (Washington DC area), CDC (Atlanta), and both national and international Conferences
  • Travel stipend to relevant meetings and courses
  • Activities include training/coursework at:
    • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
    • American Meteorological Society
    • Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA)
    • George Mason University, Center for Climate Change Communication
    • University Cooperation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR)
    • TH Chan Harvard School of Public Health
    • US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP)
    • National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
  • Reduced number of clinical Emergency Medicine shifts at the University of Colorado Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Administrative support
  1. Knowledge of Scientific Foundations
    • Basic science of climate change and sources of greenhouse gases
    • Familiarity with current climate change projections, US and global
    • Knowledge of systems (physiological, ecological, social, etc.) interactions and exposure pathways resulting in health impacts of climate change
    • Basic understanding of epidemiologic research methods
    • Basic understanding of policy analysis methods and principles
    • Familiarity with policies outside of health (urban planning, education, etc.) that could be health-relevant
  2. Knowledge of US government and relevant state policies and institutions
    • Federal agencies, including emphasis on CDC and NIH
    • Clean Power Plant Rule and other executive and legislative measures
    • US GCRP and other federal interagency activities
    • White House institutions (OSTP, CEQ, NSC, etc.)
    • Basic understanding of congressional structures and processes
    • Basic understanding of US medical societies’ positions on CC & health
  3. Knowledge of international institutions relevant to climate change and health
    • IPCC
    • UNFCCC
    • WHO
    • UNEP
    • World Bank
  4. Knowledge of health implications of climate change
    • Health impacts in the United States
    • Health impacts in other parts of the world
    • Potential health benefits from climate mitigation and adaptation measures
    • Sustainable and Climate Resilient Health Care Facilities
  5. Climate Change and health impact and vulnerability assessment skills
    • Familiarity with CDC BRACE framework and other impact and vulnerability assessment protocols
    • Ability to conduct literature review on specific topic in climate change and health
  6. Public/Stakeholder Engagement Skills
    • Public speaking
    • Formal testimony
    • TV/radio/print media interviews
    • Opinion-Editorial & Narratives
    • Social Media
    • Education
    • Engaging with policy makers

• Technical Contributor, 4th National Climate Assessment, U.S. Global Change Research Program

• Interview on National Public Radio

• Co-author Landmark public health research study in Puerto Rico: Mortality in Puerto Rico After Hurricane Maria (New England Journal of Medicine, 2018)

• Speaking engagements at numerous national and international conferences, including ACEP, AGU, AMS, SAEM, and CleanMed

• Technical contributor to 2019 Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change, Policy Brief for the United States

• Field work in Syrian Refugee Camp, Lebanon 2018

• Lead author tudying climate variability correlated with Zika in post-earthquake Ecuador: Sorensen, C. J., Borbor‐Cordova, M. J., Calvello‐Hynes, et al. (2017). Climate variability, vulnerability, and natural disasters: a case study of Zika virus in Manabi, Ecuador following the 2016 earthquake. GeoHealth, 1(8), 298-304.

• Leader of the University of Colorado Consortium for Climate Change & Human Health’s team, successfully procuring funding for a Cliamte & Health program at the CU School of Medicine

• Attended COP25 conference in Madrid with a team of leading climate policy makers

• Led review and pathway development to address adaptation in EDs to rapidly recognize and treat patients from extreme heat event

• Co-author on a seminal paper quantifying ICU admissions with dust storms in the United States, partnering with EPA staff Rublee, C., Sorensen, C., & Crooks, J. et al (2019). Associations Between Dust Storms and Surges in Intensive Care Unit Admissions in the United States, 2000-2015. AGUFM, 2019, GH31D-1177.

• Co-editor on a major climate health textbook for health providers and policymakers (from Wiley)

• Co-creator on core content webinar for the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO)

• Medical supply chain waste program—launched with the ED Clinical Operations Pharmacy teams to improve processes to recognize and reduce waste in health care at UCHealth.

• Research project with Colorado School of Public Health: chronic kidney disease of unknown origin in Guatemalan field workers [Sorensen, C. J., Butler-Dawson, J., Dally, et al. (2019). Risk factors and mechanisms underlying cross-shift decline in kidney function in Guatemalan sugarcane workers. Journal of occupational and environmental medicine, 61(3), 239.

• Defining the link between women’s health and climate change [Sorensen, C., Murray, V., Lemery, J., et al (2018). Climate change and women’s health: Impacts and policy directions. PLoS medicine, 15(7).

Application

Successful applicants will have a demonstrated interest in environmental or public health, be excellent clinicians, and show leadership aptitude.  Excellent communication skills (writing and oral presentation) are highly desired.

*The Fellowship is partially supported through clinical work in the Department of Emergency Medicine (i.e. ABEM certified or eligible).  Applicants who have the potential for support through clinical work in other Departments may be eligible to apply, and should contact the Fellowship Director Jay Lemery.

Deadlines and application cycle:

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until October 1st

In person interview will be held on:
October 20, 2020 & October 22, 2020

Fellowship Term: Following July 1st – June 30th

Apply Here

Jay Lemery, MD

Fellowship Director

email: john.lemery@cuanschutz.edu

Emilie Calvello Hynes, MD, MPH

Associate Fellowship Director

email: emilie.calvellohynes@cuanschutz.edu

Rosemary Rochford, Ph.D

Director of the CU Consortium for Climate and Health

Margaret Power

Fellowship Liaison,  Living Closer Foundation

Cecilia Sorensen, MD

Assistant Director for Climate & Health Science Policy GME Consortium

John M. Balbus, M.D., M.P.H.

Fellowship Director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

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