Climate Change Mitigation Strategies: Perspectives from a Dermatologist

Misha Rosenbach, MD, mentions various ways dermatologists (and the population at large) can be more mindful of their impact on the environment

On the most recent episode of Derm Discussions with Brad Glick, DO, MPH, dermatologist Misha Rosenbach, MD, of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, discussed the ways dermatology can and does intersect with issues surrounding climate change.

He further mentioned how the dermatology community, and the population at large, can be more mindful when it comes to evaluating their environmental impact.

“There are some low-hanging fruits that can be tapped into,” Rosenbach noted.

For example, now that the United States is beginning to reemerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, he suggested that virtual interviews and events should remain as options for individuals and institutions. Reducing air travel may be seriously considered by someone who travels quite frequently.

Currently, the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) offers a member-benefit that provides dermatologists with resources on cost-effective ways to promote cleanliness and energy-efficiency.

“Part of this is what level of impact should we be pushing for,” Rosenbach said, stressing the differences in strategies at the individual and large-scale institutional levels.

For instance, institutions like AAD may consider additional changes to promote green initiatives through both its academic focuses and events (i.e. reducing use of plastic).

Rosenbach also brought attention to an AAD-affiliated Expert Resource Group (ERG) founded by dermatologists seeking to raise awareness on climate change and the environment’s impact on dermatology (and vice-versa).

The ERG spearheads various projects and initiatives, including educational webinars, and offers environmental-related guidance to AAD.

“There’s a lot of work to do but a lot of people who are super motivated with what really is a critical issue,” said Rosenbach.

Listen to the full podcast episode below: