Development of health risk-based metrics for defining a heatwave : a time series study in Brisbane, Australia

Tong, Shilu, Wang, Xiao Yu, FitzGerald, Gerard, McRae, David, Neville, Gerard, Tippett, Vivienne, Aitken, Peter, & Verrall, Ken (2014) Development of health risk-based metrics for defining a heatwave : a time series study in Brisbane, Australia. BMC Public Health, 14, p. 435.

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Abstract

Background: This study attempted to develop health risk-based metrics for defining a heatwave in Brisbane, Australia.

Methods: Poisson generalised additive model was performed to assess the impact of heatwaves on mortality and emergency hospital admissions (EHAs) in Brisbane.

Results: In general, the higher the intensity and the longer the duration of a heatwave, the greater the health impacts. There was no apparent difference in EHAs risk during different periods of a warm season. However, there was a greater risk of mortality in the second half of a warm season than that in the first half. While elderly (>75 years)were particularly vulnerable to both the EHA and mortality effects of a heatwave, the risk for EHAs also significantly increased for two other age groups (0-64 years and 65-74 years) during severe heatwaves. Different patterns between cardiorespiratory mortality and EHAs were observed. Based on these findings, we propose the use of a teiered heat warning system based on the health risk of heatwave.

Conclusions: Health risk-based metrics are a useful tool for the development of local heatwave definitions. thsi tool may have significant implications for the assessment of heatwave-related health consequences and development of heatwave response plans and implementation strategies.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 81833
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Climate changes; Emergency hospital admissions; Heatwaves; Mean temperature; Mortality; Time series analysis
DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-435
ISSN: 1471-2458
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Emergency & Disaster Management
Current > Schools > School of Clinical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Funding:
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Tong et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Copyright Statement: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Deposited On: 16 Feb 2015 23:29
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2015 10:06

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