Ensuring public health is crucial in any policy debate on climate change. Paris Agreement on climate change is a global contract, through which countries have committed themselves to a public health treaty. The agreement has laid the foundation for mitigation and adaptation. This study was conducted to provide an evidence-based framework for policy-making in the health system of Iran in order to reduce the adverse effects of climate change on public health and to increase the adaptation of the health system as a result.
This is a qualitative study. We first used Delphi method to extract the components of Paris Agreement on climate change that were related to the functions and policymaking of health system in Iran. Twenty-three experts in health and climate change were identified purposefully and through snowball sampling as participants in Delphi. Data collection instrument was a structured questionnaire. We used SPSS software version 25 for data analysis based on the descriptive indices including the mean, the percentage of consensus above 75%, and the Kendall coordination coefficient.
Seventy-nine components classified within nine categories were extracted. The most important examples of the implementation of Paris Agreement on climate change in the health system of Iran were: participation in the formulation of strategies for mitigation and adaptation, identifying vulnerable groups, assessing vulnerability, increasing the capacity of health services delivery during extreme events, using early warning systems, using new technologies to increase the adaptation, evaluation of interventions, financial support, increasing the number of researches, increasing the knowledge and skills of staff, and finally public awareness.
Evidence-based policy-making is pivotal to develop effective programs to control the health effects of climate change. This research provided policy translation and customization of micro and macro provisions of Paris Agreement on climate change, in line with the political context of health system in Iran. Our finding will pave the ground, we envisage, for further steps towards capacity building and enhancement of resiliency of the health system, adaptation interventions, and evaluation, identification of barriers and facilitators for adaptation and decreasing the adverse health effects caused by the climate change, in Iran and perhaps beyond.