A new report from Regional Asthma Management & Prevention (RAMP) and Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS) will help public health and healthcare professionals connect clients and patients with free weatherization and energy efficiency programs.
Energy Efficiency and Health: A Guide for Public Health and Health Care Professionals on Connecting Vulnerable Residents with Energy Efficiency Services addresses why health professionals should connect residents with energy efficiency programs and how to make that connection.
Housing conditions play a significant role in health. For instance, improper heating and cooling in homes can exacerbate illnesses, such as asthma. Adding or replacing insulation, air sealing, and improving heating and cooling systems can reduce humidity and moisture that contribute to mold and pest problems, help stabilize temperatures, and create a more comfortable living environment overall, according to the 32-page report.
The report, developed with support from the California Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Equity, also lists an array of free energy efficiency services available in California, including eligibility criteria.
CCHS and RAMP are making the report available to community partners and healthcare providers to use as a resource-connection tool. The tool includes a simple 8-step plan for setting up a system to connect vulnerable residents with energy efficiency services and features such tools as a flow chart for coordination across programs and sample home assessment questions.
The report also provides an in-depth description of a pilot project led by Contra Costa Health Services to connect its medically vulnerable clients with energy efficiency services. The document details lessons learned from that project, as well as from other projects across the country.