The “Climate and Health” Enhanced Medical Education Track (EMET) is one of several competitive training tracks offered by the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s (UNMC) College of Medicine (COM) to provide specialized training in an interdisciplinary field of medicine. The climate and health EMET, new in 2021, is co-directed by Dr. Jesse Bell and Dr. Ellen Kerns, faculty in the UNMC COM.
Each EMET student conducts a research project on the topic of climate and health.
Climate and Health EMET Students:
Anna’s research examines CO2 emissions saved from 2019-2022 at Nebraska Medicine through telehealth. Healthcare appointments accessible from one's home through audio-only or audio-visual technology eliminate CO2 emissions from transport to and from in-person healthcare appointments. Additionally, the project aims to understand how telehealth and emissions changed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Telehealth provides a feasible opportunity for the healthcare sector to reduce its contribution to climate change. This project will explore the magnitude of emission reduction through the lens of the pandemic.
Bailey’s project seeks to understand the relationship between increasing ambient temperature and congenital defect development. Specifically, the project retrospectively analyzes extreme heat exposures of pregnant Nebraska residents and the potential risk of development of a congenital heart defect. Congenital heart defects are the most prevalent birth defect category and are associated with the highest risk of mortality during the infantile period.
Morgan's project investigates the relationship between drought and heat-related illness. The study utilizes heat-related ICD-10 mortality codes to see the difference in heat-related deaths during drought and non-drought times. Heat and drought have an intricate relationship, and because heat has been well-established with causing heat related mortality, it's valuable to investigate whether drought does as well.
Denise Torres, BS
Denise Torres is a first-year medical student at UNMC College of Medicine. She is originally from the Philippines, and grew up in Maui, Hawaii, prior to obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience at Creighton University. She is involved in the Climate Change and Health Enhanced Medical Education Track (EMET) program to understand and prepare for the impacts of climate change on health.
Alexis Rasmussen, BS
Alexis Rasmussen is an Omaha native and received her bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from South Dakota State University. She is currently a first-year medical student with an interest in exploring how the effects of climate change will impact the health of future patients through the College of Medicine’s Enhanced Medical Education Track (EMET).