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U.K. Report Summarizes Challenges Of Heatwaves, Aims To Direct Efforts Of Government To Mitigate Threat To Public Health

The Lancet: Heatwaves and health
Editorial Board

“…The world is facing a true planetary health emergency. … [Heatwaves] exacerbate existing problems like drought and present profound risks to health. … Heatwaves increase deaths from cardiovascular and respiratory conditions and are also associated with more suicides. People at the extremes of age are most susceptible to heat, but so are those who are poor or socially isolated. … To summarize the challenges presented by hotter summers in the future and to direct the [U.K.] government’s response, the U.K. House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee released a report … [that] catalogs poorly judged decisions by the U.K. government that have increased vulnerability to heatwaves. … This is an important opportunity to place health at the center of decision-making about climate change, to recognize that threats to health, like heatwaves, are shared internationally, to build more resilient communities, and, most importantly, to limit further emissions of greenhouse gases” (8/4).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.