Tap into existing networks and governance resources to maximize the positive impact of your adaptation plan
Understand the strengths and limitations of your department and consider how you can take advantage of resources at multiple governance levels and non-health focus departments impacted by climate change to reach at-risk populations. See below for suggested approaches to maximize the positive impact on your adaptation plan:
- Implement the adaptation plan at various levels relying on the resources and network of each implementer.
- Engage non-health partners in government. Health in All Policies could be an approach to collaboratively address complex factors that influence health and equity.
- Define the role of the state in supporting local health departments’ investment in at-risk populations.
- Delegate leadership roles of adaptation planning and implementation to local public leaders who are more familiar with their jurisdiction’s at-risk populations and needs.
- For example, to engage with tribal communities, practitioners can use existing protocols and a collection of resources from the Tribal Public and Environmental Health Think Tank, National Congress of American Indians, National Indian Health Board, Tribal Epidemiology Centers, Native American Research Center for Health, Indian Health Service and the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals.
The Minnesota Department of Health’s climate adaptation plans are based on information about the particular community the plan intends to serve and input from all the divisions at the department. The department has not yet worked directly with at-risk populations to develop adaptation plans, so there is a potential opportunity for future evaluation and engagement. Since the department’s work is primarily focused on state-level action, they infuse climate and health priorities within city and county planning and emergency management efforts. The department uses a “health and climate in all policies approach” by working with other professionals to elevate climate and health across all public policies. The department provides technical assistance to cities, counties or other agencies that are directly involved in community engagement and are developing their own adaptation plans.2