Benchmark-Policy Brief Assignment Paper

Benchmark-Policy Brief Assignment Paper

Benchmark-Policy Brief Assignment Paper

Climate change is a major public health emergency. The impacts of climate change; especially air pollution have been felt across the United States and globally (Akasha et al., 2021). The nursing profession plays an instrumental role in influencing the formulation and initiation of environmental policies to mitigate the impacts of climate change and enhance the provision of healthcare services in the healthcare system. Climate change affects health in various ways including extreme weather conditions, heat, cardiovascular conditions, asthma attacks, storms, and other catastrophes that emanate from ozone deprivation (Akasha et al., 2021). The effects of climate change are dire and there is a need to advocate for appropriate policies to address the issue. The purpose of this paper is to summarize the issue of climate change, explain its effects on the population, and propose a solution to deal with climate change.

Problem Statement

Climate change affects everyone. In the health care system, the increased negative outcomes due to climate change impact the accessibility of health care services (Kinney, 2018). For instance, catastrophic events such as storms affect people alike. However, the economically disadvantaged people in society are affected the most compared to the economically privileged people. The vulnerable population experiences the most burden of climate change. In addition, the other groups in the society that are likely to be adversely impacted by climate change include pregnant women, infants, children, people living with chronic conditions, people living with disabilities, and rural dwellers who have no access to better health facilities.

A shift in the quality of air causes air pollution, which is attributed to high rates of mortality and morbidity alongside adverse health conditions associated with ozone layer deprivation (Urrutia-Pereira et al., 2021). Air pollution originates from various sources such as fossil fuels, which produce toxic emissions when used. These emissions make the air unhealthy to breathe and support life. High temperatures can cause air pollutants and lethal allergens (Akasha et al., 2021). For instance, hot seasons can cause protracted pollen season, which causes allergic reactions and more episodes of asthma. In turn, the victims may face economic challenges due to loss of productivity.


Suggestions to Address the Climate Change

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Mitigating climate change is crucial in ensuring the good health and safety of people. Adoption of timely, planned, and responsible actions on climate change are necessary for lowering the adverse impacts of climate change in the future and enhancing the well-being of individuals. The first recommendation in addressing climate change is the adoption of sound climate-health adaptation and climate change awareness initiatives (Kinney, 2018). These initiatives are vital in reducing the release of carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide gases that absorbs heat in the atmosphere. Additionally, individuals should avoid excessive use of machines and cars that emits carbon gases and resort to active modes of transport such as walking or riding bicycles. This strategy is crucial in mitigating air pollution and inspires healthy lifestyle changes involving physical activity, which is critical in addressing lifestyle conditions such as heart diseases, diabetes, and obesity.

Stakeholders play a vital role in climate change initiatives including the promotion of safe environmental conditions by screening and trailing climate change programs (Al-Delaimy et al., 2020). For instance, the U.S environmental protection agency tracks the quality of air and uses the information to create public awareness of detrimental levels of poor quality of air. This information is important in guiding susceptible individuals to minimize exposure when in public places. The agency also safeguards individuals from diesel exhausts from machines, which generate carcinogenic products for the public.

Steps in Initiating Policy Change

The policy is an effective way to address climate change. Nurses are influential in formulating policy to advocate for public wellbeing. The initial step in policy change is the recognition of the issue. Stakeholders should gather appropriate information about the effects of climate change and air pollution on health. Other information that is collected includes the scope, features, and seriousness of climate change. Consequently, this information should be integrated and presented for analysis (Al-Delaimy et al., 2020). The next step is policy analysis which entails research and recognition of policy alternatives to address climate change. Policy analysis examines various factors including budgetary impacts, economic impacts, and political factors that might emanate from policy implementation (Al-Delaimy et al., 2020). The next step is determining strategies for formulating and operating the policy. The final step is the enactment and implementation of the policy based on proper administrative actions and procedures.

Impact on Health Care Delivery System

Air pollution, which is traced to climate change, is associated with adverse health effects. It increases episodes of asthma attacks leading to more emergency room visits. It also leads to a high rate of hospitalization due to heart and respiratory diseases and also limits open-air activities such as physical activity (Wang, 2020). The effects are attributed to premature morbidity and mortality and heavy cost of care as well. Increased hospitalization and emergency room visits imply increased demand for health care providers (Wang, 2020). As a result, the existing workforce is likely to be overwhelmed and suffer fatigue and burnout.


Climate change is real and its effects on the public are extremely damaging. Air pollution is a serious health concern that is associated with many adverse effects on health. Relevant stakeholders such as the government and responsible agencies should partner with healthcare providers to formulate appropriate policies to address these issues and ensure lasting solutions.


Akasha, H., Ghaffarpasand, O., & Pope, F. (2021). Climate change and air pollution.

Al-Delaimy, W., Ramanathan, V., & Sánchez Sorondo, M. (2020). The health of people, the health of the planet, and our responsibility: Climate change, air pollution, and health (p. 419). Springer Nature.

Kinney, P. L. (2018). Interactions of climate change, air pollution, and human health. Current environmental health reports, 5(1), 179-186.

Urrutia-Pereira, M., Guidos-Fogelbach, G., & Solé, D. (2021). Climate changes, air pollution, and allergic diseases in childhood and adolescence. Jornal de pediatria.

Wang, J. (2020). Climate-smart health care: the power of health care action on air pollution and climate change. European Journal of Public Health, 30(Supplement_5), ckaa165-299.


Assessment Traits
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Assessment Description
Research public health issues on the “Climate Change” or “Topics and Issues” pages of the American Public Health Association (APHA) website. Investigate a public health issue related to an environmental issue within the U.S. health care delivery system and examine its effect on a specific population.

Write a 750-1,000-word policy brief that summarizes the issue, explains the effect on the population, and proposes a solution to the issue.

Follow this outline when writing the policy brief:

Describe the policy health issue. Include the following information: (a) what population is affected, (b) at what level does it occur (local, state, or national), and (c) evidence about the issues supported by resources.
Create a problem statement.
Provide suggestions for addressing the health issue caused by the current policy. Describe what steps are required to initiate policy change. Include necessary stakeholders (government officials, administrator) and budget or funding considerations, if applicable.
Discuss the impact on the health care delivery system.
Include three peer-reviewed sources and two other sources to support the policy brief.

Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center.

This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.

You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite. A link to the LopesWrite technical support articles is located in Course Resources if you need assistance.

Benchmark Information

Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

The benchmark assesses the following competencies:

1.4 Participate in health care policy development to influence nursing practice and health care.

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