Fourth National Climate Assessment

NCA4 Web Site

Human Health

Climate change is expected to worsen existing health conditions and introduce new health threats by increasing the frequency and intensity of poor air quality days, extreme high temperature events, and heavy rainfalls; extending pollen seasons; and modifying the distribution of disease-carrying pests and insects. By mid-century, the region is projected to experience substantial, yet avoidable, loss of life, worsened health conditions, and economic impacts estimated in the billions of dollars as a result of these changes. Improved basic health services and increased public health measures—including surveillance and monitoring—can prevent or reduce these impacts.