Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
Women's Health
National Cancer Institute

Women's Health

The Heat Policy Innovation Hub is examining and addressing the impacts of extreme and chronic heat on the health and well-being of women.

Environmental heat exposure disproportionately impacts the health and well-being of women across their entire lifespan—from birth to adolescence to pregnancy and working years to later in life. Heat exposure is a systemic burden for women that is magnified by existing inequities. Women are more likely to live in poor housing, be exposed to unsafe working conditions, lack access to healthcare, experience higher rates of poverty, and become victims of domestic violence, the impacts of which are exacerbated by extreme heat.

The effects of climate change on women are not geographically constrained. Similarities in context between the Southern United States and many developing nations, such as rural heat exposure and gender inequities, provide an opportunity for global sharing of strategies and lessons learned. Collaborations at the nexus of women’s health and heat can foster a global foundation of knowledge on life stage-specific heat interventions. This work presents an opportunity to create a future where the heat-health burden is alleviated for all women everywhere throughout their lifespans.


Maternal Health in the Sunbelt

Maternal health is profoundly impacted by chronic heat exposure. Yet the Southeastern US, a region with historically poor maternal health outcomes and high exposure to extreme heat, has seen insufficient research and action on this issue.

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