UCSF Fresno Addresses Air Pollution and Climate Change at First Annual Symposium

FRESNO - Air in the San Joaquin Valley is some of the most polluted in the United States. While everyone is harmed by air pollution, older citizens, those with heart and lung disease and children among others are most at risk. In fact, one out of six children in the San Joaquin Valley has asthma. In addition, as climate change continues, so will the risks to human health, according to a recent report by the Obama Administration. Worsening asthma and allergy conditions, premature deaths due to extreme heat and increased water-related illnesses are among the health impacts linked to climate change.

To address these concerns, UCSF Fresno’s Department of Internal Medicine and Community Medical Centers will present the first Air Pollution and Climate Change Symposium from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 23, at the UCSF Fresno Center for Medical Education and Research, located at 155 N. Fresno St. in downtown Fresno. Parking is available in the UCSF Fresno lot with access on Illinois St.

“The San Joaquin Valley, with an estimated population of 4 million, has been the epicenter of the worst air pollution indices in the U.S. for several decades,” said Jose Joseph Vempilly, MD, UCSF Professor of Clinical Medicine, Director of the Asthma Education Program and Director of Respiratory Care at UCSF Fresno. “Unfortunately, the population taking the brunt of air pollution is from poor socioeconomic status, especially if they live close to highways. People who live near areas with high traffic density experienced the highest number of emergency room visits for respiratory-related illness.”

“The adverse effects of air pollution on maternal-child health, aging, cardiovascular, pulmonary, dermatological and neurological health in adults and their risk for cancer have been increasing progressively,” added Daya Upadhyay, MD, UCSF Associate Clinical Professor, Lung Nodule Program Medical Director and Director of Translational Research at UCSF Fresno.

Experts from UCSF Fresno, UC Davis, American Lung Association of California, New York University, San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control District and University of Washington will discuss the following:

  • State of the air in the San Joaquin Valley over the past decade
  • Cities with the best and worst air quality in the U.S.
  • Impact of air pollution on airway diseases and systemic diseases
  • Climate change and its effects on human health
  • Consequences of climate change over the next century
  • Solutions for reducing the burden of global air pollution

Media interviews with UCSF Fresno experts are available in advance. Please call (559) 313-6539 to schedule. For more information about the symposium, please call (559) 499-6421 or email [email protected]. Continuing medical education credit is available. Registration is $50. Registration is available online at: www.fresno.ucsf.edu/conferences/air2016