What are Vulnerability & Adaptation Assessments?

Vulnerability and Adaptation (V&A) Assessments evaluate current and future vulnerability (i.e. the susceptibility of a population or region to harm) to the health risks of climate change, and identify policies and programmes that could increase resilience, taking into account the multiple determinants of climate-sensitive health outcomes.

How do they support health adaptation?

The assessment outcome provides the fundamental scientific evidence for decision makers on the extent and magnitude of current and likely health risks attributable to climate change and priority policies and programmes to prevent and reduce the severity of future impacts.

What are the steps for assessing vulnerability and adaptive capacity?

The steps conducted in a particular assessment will depend on the climate-sensitive health problems of interest, but the following steps show the standard process followed in a V&A Assessment:

  1. Frame and scope the assessment: define the geographical region and health outcomes of interest, identify the questions to be addressed, identify the policy context for the assessment, and develop a communications plan.
  2. Conduct a vulnerability assessment by describing human health risks of current climate variability and recent climate change, and the public health policies and programmes to address the risks.
  3. Conduct an impact assessment by projecting future health risks and impacts under climate change.
  4. Conduct an adaptation assessment by identifying and prioritising policies and programmes to address current and projected health risks.
  5. Establish an iterative process for monitoring and managing the health risks of climate change.

Countries involved

Benin, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia

Organisations involved

World Health Organisation (WHO), and Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), with support from Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) in Malawi and Tanzania

Important links