In connection with the implementation of project “Climate friendly healthcare institutions” Gotse Delchev Municipality organized two discussion seminars to present the developed “Health adaptation strategies relating to climate change on local level”.

The first seminar was attended by mayors of settlements, administrative officials, and public figures. The second was intended for medical professionals.

The lecturer Stefan Savov from the association “Expert Pool – Bulgaria” acquainted the participants in detail with the developed strategy. It is intended to serve as a basis for future assessments of the health sector situation at the local level in the perspective of climate change and related events.

The strategy aims to contribute to the development of policies and planning by the municipality of Gotse Delchev for community adaptation to climate change. This will help local authorities and health institutions to integrate climate change into existing health programs and improve disaster risk reduction, emergency preparedness and response capacity to respond to the increased risk of emergencies.
Active participants in the discussion were the mayors of settlements in the municipality, including the mayor Mr. Moskov, the deputy mayors of Gotse Delchev Municipality, as well as mayors of villages, representatives of health facilities and other stakeholders. Following the presentation, a number of concerns were raised not only about measures to adapt to climate change, but also about measures to mitigate it and reduce the carbon footprint of the local community as a whole. Some of the mayors of municipal villages mentioned areas where regular floods occur, but they are not included in the flood risk management plan of the West Aegean Basin Directorate for 2016-2021.

The main conclusion was that the most important actions are those aimed at informing the local population about climate change, the risks, the right behaviour and the actions taken by the authorities to protect life and property. Preparedness is the best strategy.