El Niño and the reduction of its impacts on the health sector

Course Description:

Moderate El Niño conditions have developed in the tropical Pacific, setting the stage for a surge in temperatures and disruptive weather and climate patterns across the Americas. With these conditions, health impacts are anticipated to result from changes in vector borne and zoonotic diseases, food and water insecurity and instability, exposure to extreme heat and air pollution and an increased risk for meteorological extreme events. Health systems are on the frontlines, and must respond in a timely and proactive fashion to protect human health.

The goal of this course is to equip federal, regional and local health systems planners, emergency planners and responders, public health officials, healthcare practitioners, the meteorological sector and others with the knowledge and tools needed to prepare for local and regional health-related impacts. This includes what can be anticipated in terms of meteorological changes and associated health impacts, best practices for management and response, and introduction to available decision making and risk management tools.

Course Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the anticipated meteorological impacts of ENSO in their region, and likely resulting health impacts.
  • Explain how ENSO conditions may impact health through extreme temperatures, changes in vector-borne and zoonotic diseases, impacts on food and water security, poor air quality, and meteorological extreme events including flooding, landslides, drought and hurricanes.
  • Develop an initial plan for local/regional/national response using available risk management and decision making tools and recommendations from authoritative health partners.



Introductory Webinar: "El Niño and its Impacts on the Health Sector" webinar organized by WMO, UNDRR, PAHO, GCCHE, and IAI - Video Recording | Slides and Resources