“Climate change is the single greatest threat to planetary and human health of our time. It is not a distant future concern, but a process that is occurring here and now.” – Roa L, Velin L, et al.

Climate change is a huge idea. It stems from the accumulation of greenhouse gases due to human consumptive practices that results in environmental changes. Some of these changes have drastic changes not only on our planet but also on health. Increasing global temperature have “resulted in approximately 125 million more people who have health issues related to heat, such as dehydration, heatstroke, and cardiovascular disease, in 2016 compared with in 2000.” Rising sea levels has led to increased flooding and other natural disasters thus leading to heightened need for trauma care and economic ruin and resulting poverty. Further, pollution plagues the air of many cities globally that may cause respiratory effects that rival that of smoking.

While increasing access to surgical services worldwide is vital to human life, doing so in a environmentally friendly manner is essential to sustainable scaling and longitudinal growth. Join us in this earth shattering episode as we discuss with Dr Roa and Dr Velin about their recent paper in the Lancet and how to use solutions from all six building blocks to be advocates for a two-way relationship between surgery and climate change. You won’t want to miss this!

Dr Lina Roa: OBGYN Resident, Lecturer at Harvard Medical School, PGSSC Alumni, Developed NSOAPs with WHO 


Lotta Velin: Final Year Medical Student, PhD Student, GEIGS Co-Chair, PGSSC Alumni, Represented Sweden in UN climate change negotiations.





LMICs leapfrogging HICs. Sustainability and environmental impact while scaling. Two-way relationship between surgery and climate change”

Dr Lina Roa is a medical doctor and resident in Obstetrics & Gynecology at the University of Alberta, Canada. Her research, policy and advocacy work focuses on access to high-quality surgical care and sexual and reproductive health for women worldwide. She was a lecturer at Harvard Medical School and completed the Paul Farmer Global Surgery Research Fellowship at the Program in Global Surgery and Social Change, where her research focused on measurement of surgical quality and access to cesarean sections and gynecologic surgery in Brazil, Mexico and the U.S. She also worked closely with the World Health Organization Western Pacific Regional Office on the development of National Surgical Obstetric and Anesthesia plans in the Pacific Islands. She holds an M.D from the University of Toronto and an MPH in Clinical Effectiveness from Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health.


Lotta Velin is a final year medical student at Lund University in Sweden and a PhD student at the Center for Disaster Medicine and Traumatology at Linköping (Ling-sure-ping) University. In 2019-2020 she completed a year as research associate at the Program in Global Surgery and Social Change, where she primarily worked on projects in rural Rwanda. She is currently serving as one of three co-chairs of the Gender Equity Initiative in Global Surgery aiming empower underrepresented genders in surgery worldwide. Lotta is passionate about the intersection of climate change, health, and equity, and has represented Sweden’s children and youth in the UN climate change negotiations in 2018.