The WONCA Working Party on the Environment and the Planetary Health Alliance Clinicians for Planetary Health Working Group are collating stories from physicians and other clinicians focused on the health impacts of global environmental change. The Clinicians for Planetary Health project is a recently-formed effort to galvanize clinicians and their patients around the importance of recognizing and acting upon increasingly urgent planetary health challenges through lifestyle modifications and activism. Part of the project’s communications and outreach strategy involves producing a video library that highlights the voices of physicians and other clinicians, speaking to the changing landscape of health risks they’re seeing in their practices due to global environmental change, their experiences with becoming aware of planetary health, and what messages they’d like to relay to their colleagues and patients about the path forward. Through the dissemination of these short videos, in tandem with the dissemination of other communications materials, we hope to make the messages of planetary health hit home -- that our health is inextricably linked with that of Earth’s natural systems, and that we must take action together.
As a physician or other clinician, you are a trusted source of information for the community and hold power in relaying these health-relevant messages in a compelling way. Become a part of the rapidly-expanding global network of physicians and other clinicians committed to planetary health by contributing to this call for videos. Share your story to communicate to clinicians and others in your country about the importance of understanding and acting upon planetary health challenges. What is your call to action? How can we make a difference together?
1. Create a short video, recording yourself discussing your experience with planetary health and issuing a call to action.
2. Fill out this form with your name, email address, title, organization, and country.
3. Upload your video to this Google Drive folder, with the file name in this format: LastName_Country (e.g. Smith_USA).
4. We’ll reach back out to you when it’s time to share your video!
Your video will be included on the Clinicians for Planetary Health YouTube channel and shared through social media with the hashtag #clinicians4ph. They will be disseminated along with a document created by the WONCA Working Party on the Environment and the Planetary Health Alliance Clinicians for Planetary Health Working Group, “A Memo to the Physicians and Other Clinicians of the World to Act on Planetary Health.”
View examples here.
1. Keep your video short (around 2-3 minutes).
2. Keep the format simple (speak directly to the camera; no graphics necessary).
3. Keep the content relevant (to learn more about planetary health, click here; view a sample script below).
4. Make your communication compelling and action-oriented (e.g. learn more about avoiding apocalypse fatigue here).
5. Refrain from discussing politics. Messages are often more compelling when grounded in evidence and personal experience without potentially polarizing partisan rhetoric.
1. Introduce yourself: e.g. “My name is ____, and I am a ___ in _[country]___.”
2. Frame your message: e.g.
a. “I am concerned about planetary health because ______.”
b. “I became aware of planetary health in my practice/in my country because _______.”
c. “It’s important for clinicians to be aware of planetary health because ______.”
d. “I had my ‘aha moment’ in planetary health when _____.”
3. Define planetary health: e.g.
b. “Planetary health is a field focused on characterizing the human health impacts of human-caused disruptions of Earth's natural systems.”
c. “Despite the hard-won public health gains of the past decades, we are increasingly faced with the consequences of human-caused global environmental change -- like degraded air quality, threatened food production, new infectious disease exposures, decreasing access to fresh water, new natural hazards -- all of which have negative impacts on our nutrition, mental health, and susceptibility to injury and disease.”
4. Discuss your personal experience: e.g.
b. “These issues feel particularly important and urgent to me because ___.”
5. Discuss opportunities for action: e.g.
b. “In __[country]__, we need to _[list actions]___.”
c. “What can you do? You can: _______”
***Opportunities for action include:
~ Engaging in your local community, advocating for things like bike lanes, conservation, green space, composting services, and farmer's markets, and finding ways to connect to others passionate about these issues.
~Reducing your personal environmental impact in other ways, like recycling, composting, switching to renewable energy sources, utilizing public transport systems, and reducing your air travel.
~Joining the Clinicians for Planetary Health Working Group or another local organization to get involved.