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Dr. Ana Raquel Nunes on unexpected heatwave

The current heatwave in the UK underscores the need for comprehensive strategies to address heat-related health risks, especially for vulnerable groups such as older adults, children, those with chronic illnesses, socially isolated individuals, and outdoor workers.


Traditional health advice focused on individual behaviours is insufficient. A shift to a social model of health that considers socio-economic and environmental factors is essential, including promoting air-conditioned public places, community support, and timely information dissemination. Healthcare providers must consider heat-related risks for patients with pre-existing conditions or social vulnerabilities. We must raise awareness with practical, actionable information. Governments must prioritise protecting vulnerable groups through accessible resources, cooling centres, and outreach programs. As climate change increases heatwave frequency and severity, enhancing preparedness and response strategies is crucial for saving lives and building resilient communities.

Fri 28 Jun 2024, 10:16