US recognize climate impact at health G7

Agreement among six nations, compromise with United States

(ANSA) - Milan, November 6 - The Group of Seven health ministers meeting in Milan on Monday issued a joint statement saying that climate factors have an impact on human health.
    Italy's Beatrice Lorenzin said an agreement was reached on the final statement thanks to a compromise struck with the United States. "A shared conclusion has been reached", Lorenzin said.
    "There was a great political effort and we managed to find some common ground with the USA too". The health minister said the document "recalled the position of the the USA", which has pulled out of the Paris climate agreement.
    But the American team also "accepted the impact of climate factors on people's health" Lorenzin said.
    The final statement said climate and environmental-connected factors can "aggravate existing health risks and create new threats".
    It cited the need to raise the public's awareness on the impact that such factors can have on health.
    Italy, France, Canada, Germany, the US, Japan and Great Britain collectively pledged to help 500 million people out of famine and malnutrition by 2030 and to "attain by 2020 the eco-sustainable management of chemical substances and waste to reduce to the minimum the negative impact on human health and the environment" of potentially harmful factors. Countries will also work to reduce emissions in urban areas by promoting innovative solutions including "sustainable mobility", the document said.
    It also focused on the need to support migrants providing, among other things, "healthcare services, in particular immunization programs for migrants and refugees also in situations of forced movements and prolonged periods of crisis".
    In general, the final document stressed "the importance of boosting healthcare systems" so countries can grant universal coverage without leaving anyone behind.
    Speaking on the sidelines of the G7 meeting, Flavia Bustreo, the World Health Organization's assistant director-general, told ANSA that two billion euros have been pledged at the meeting for 2018 to a fund aimed at promoting the health of women and children.
    The pledge to the Global Financing Facility fund is aimed at "implementing and improving the health" of women and children "by promoting global strategies", Bustreo said.
    Bustreo said the main objectives are "reducing maternal and child mortality, with respectively about 300,000 and 5.6 million deaths recorded every year worldwide, and cutting down teen fatalities.
    Roughly one million adolescents die every year in the world, mainly due to road accidents, high-risk teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, the WHO official said.
    Bustreo also said on the sidelines of the meeting that 90% of cities and towns assessed by the WHO, including Italian ones, don't abide by the organization's air quality guidelines, with a "direct impact on the health of women, children and the elderly".