Skip to main content

Perceptions of heatwave risks to health: interview-based study of older people in London and Norwich, UK

Abrahamson, V., Wolf, J., Lorenzoni, I., Fenn, B., Kovats, S., Wilkinson, P., Adger, N., Raine, R. (2009) Perceptions of heatwave risks to health: interview-based study of older people in London and Norwich, UK. Journal of Public Health, 31 (1). pp. 119-126. ISSN 1741-3842. (doi:10.1093/pubmed/fdn102) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pubmed/fdn102

Abstract

Background Most projections of climate change suggest an increased frequency of heatwaves in England over coming decades; older people are at particular risk. This could result in substantial mortality and morbidity. Objective To determine elderly people’s knowledge and perceptions of heat-related risks to health, and of protective behaviours. Methods Semi-structured interviews: 73 men and women, 72–94 years, living in their own homes in London and Norwich, UK. Results Few respondents considered themselves either old or at risk from the effects of heat, even though many had some form of relevant chronic illness; they did recognize that some medical conditions might increase risks in others. Most reported that they had taken appropriate steps to reduce the effects of heat. Some respondents considered it appropriate for the government to take responsibility for protecting vulnerable people, but many thought state intervention was unnecessary, intrusive and unlikely to be effective. Respondents were more positive about the value of appropriately disseminated advice and solutions by communities themselves. Conclusion The Heatwave Plan should consider giving greater emphasis to a population-based information strategy, using innovative information dissemination methods to increase awareness of vulnerability to heat among the elderly and to ensure clarity about behaviour modification measures.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1093/pubmed/fdn102
Projects: Projects 76585 not found.
Uncontrolled keywords: Health protection, health risks, heatwaves, knowledge, perceptions
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC952 Geriatrics
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Centre for Health Services Studies
Depositing User: Tony Rees
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2014 13:58 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 13:48 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/45639 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Abrahamson, V.: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1169-9457
  • Depositors only (login required):