Ab­nor­mally warm win­ter tem­per­a­tures worry pub­lic health of­fi­cials

Modern Healthcare - - THE WEEK AHEAD - —Sabriya Rice

The new Paris agree­ment aimed at curb­ing cli­mate change is sched­uled to take ef­fect in 2020. In the mean­time, pub­lic health of­fi­cials have their eye on ab­nor­mally high tem­per­a­tures sweep­ing across the coun­try.

The na­tional Dec. 25 hol­i­day could be the warm­est in decades, and the prospect for a snowy Christ­mas is un­likely in most North­ern states.

Con­tin­ued warm weather pat­terns this win­ter could fore­shadow a steamy sum­mer and the po­ten­tial for heat waves like the record one that led to more than 700 deaths in Chicago in 1995, said Elena Gross­man, the Illi­nois man­ager for a project funded in 16 states by the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Preven­tion called Build­ing Re­silience Against Cli­mate Ef­fects.

“That could be­come more typ­i­cal,” Gross­man said. “There are a myr­iad of pub­lic health is­sues that are con­nected to cli­mate change.”

Ac­cord­ing to the CDC, shift­ing weather pat­terns hurt healthy ecosys­tems. The cli­mate changes can fa­cil­i­tate the spread of ill­nesses that are trans­mit­ted through food and wa­ter, and boost the pres­ence of dis­ease-car­ry­ing in­sects such as mos­qui­toes and ticks.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.