Bula Vinaka, I’m Vakaruru from Fiji. I am currently undertaking my Masters in Health Sciences with MBC ad the College of Education, Health Science and Human Development. My research thesis is on the health impacts of climate change in Fiji. My topic is Climate Change and Human Health: An ecological study on the impacts of climate variability on malnutrition in Fiji. I am trying to determine the relationship between climate variables (temperature, humidity and precipitation) with the prevalence of malnutrition in Fiji from 2006 to 2016. This topic was chosen as Fiji, and the countries in the Pacific are experiencing the impacts of climate change through frequently happening extreme weather events, coastal erosions, community relocation, etc. The impacts are significant and health consequences are unavoidable. Malnutrition has been described by the Fijian Ministry of Health as the number one child killer in Fiji. The study looks at how climate change has influenced the prevalence of malnutrition in Fiji for the past ten years. The research will use statistical modelling to test for the relationship and also come up with a forecasting model for malnutrition if climate variables prevail.
It’s a privilege to be part of the MBC, as we have the opportunity to share ideas from different backgrounds on issues facing the Pacific and how to address them moving forward. A great place to network and capacity building.