OHHI Goals

Health Early Warning Systems (HEWS)

Lead the development of HEWS to forecast threats and predict long-term risks to human health throughout U.S. coastal and Great Lakes waters.

Health Benefits

Investigate and optimize health benefits from the sea.

Community Development

Develop a robust oceans and human health community working across disciplines and institutions to improve public health.

Latest News from the OHHI

Photo of dolphin, oil can be seen on its back

A Look at the Gulf One Year Later: NOAA's Role and Monitoring Health Impacts on the Environment and Wildlife.
Watch CNN video clip: Gulf Coast Wildlife One Year Later.

Additional Stories.

Photo of workers collecting shellfish. Credit: Bill Dewey, Taylor Shellfish Farm

OHHI hosts In Hot Water: Rising Public Health Concerns from Changing Ocean Conditions at the 2011 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Washington, DC. Press Release, Stories, and Podcast.

More Media and News Releases

OHHI Multimedia


Sea Lion Sickness

Learn more about sea lion sickness in this short video.

More Videos



Hear about how diseases found in dolphins are similar to humans in this podcast from the National Ocean Service.

More Podcasts


Interagency OHH Research Plan

Read the Interagency Oceans and Human Health Research Implementation Plan or the two page announcement.

More Reports and Publications

News Releases/Media


The Interagency Working Group on Climate Change and Health has released a white paper on human health and climate change. Learn all about it in the NOAA Press Release.

More News Releases/Media

OHHI Program Feature

green gov logo

GreenGov Presidential Award Given to Interagency Team

NOAA, led by the OHHI as part of an interagency working team, was honored with the 2010 GreenGov Presidential Award in October for their publication of "A Human Health Perspective on Climate Change". The "Green Dream Team Award" recognizes "exceptional leadership by an interagency green team to effectively place a Federal sustainability idea into action". Over 300 applications were received for six categories of sustainable actions. The award was presented on behalf of the President by CEQ Chair Nancy Sutley. The report discusses what is known and the gaps in our understanding of the consequences of climate change on 11 major illness categories. NOAA Administrator, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, said of the report, "To mitigate and adapt to the health effects of climate change, we must first understand them. This report is a vital new roadmap for doing that. There is an urgent need to get started, and I am pleased that we can bring NOAA climate science and NOAA capabilities in linking ocean and human health and a range of other monitoring and prediction tools to the table".

View the Report or view the NOAA Press Release announcing its release.

OHHI Meetings and Events

Recent Meetings and Events

OHHI at the 2011 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting

NOAA's Ocean and Human Health Initiative (OHHI) hosted the symposium "In Hot Water: Rising Public Health Concerns from Changing Ocean Conditions" at the recent 2011 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Washington, DC. The session featured representatives from OHHI and its new academic-based Consortia for Graduate Training. Speakers unveiled new research and models demonstrating how climate change could increase exposure and risk of human illness originating from ocean, coastal and Great Lakes ecosystems, with some studies projecting impacts to be felt within 30 years. The findings shed light on how complex interactions and climate change alterations in sea, land and sky make ocean and freshwater environments more susceptible to toxic algal blooms and proliferation of harmful microbes and bacteria. Press Release, Stories, and Podcast.

OHHI National Advisory Panel Meeting

The OHHI Advisory Panel meeting took place 20-21 October 2010 in Washington, D.C. The meeting was to provide a programmatic overview and review of OHHI's Consortia for Graduate Training in OHH, provide AP input on the next phase of the OHHI Traineeship Program and OHHI recent activities and partnerships as well as to discuss connecting OHH science and scientists to the public health community. Further information on the meeting is available at the OHHI National Advisory Panel Meeting web site.

Upcoming Meetings and Events

American Public Health Association (APHA), October 29-November 2, 2011, Washington DC, Special Session -- Climate change and the coasts: Coping with rising health threats and preparing for the future, November 1, 2011

Further information on these and other upcoming and past OHH-related meetings is available in the OHHI Calendar.

For Further Information

For further OHHI information contact OHHI at Bree.Thompson@noaa.gov

To learn more about NOAA's National Ocean Service visit: