Saturday, November 27

Elderly people must be protected from the heat – News (Ekot)

– There will be heat waves more often now. There will be more heat waves in the future. Current guidance has focused more on cold, says Elin Stenberg.

It is above all risk groups such as the chronically ill and the elderly who are hard hit by heat waves. In 2018, it is estimated that more than 600 people may have died due to the heat wave in Sweden.

In the general advice available today, the temperature must not exceed 26 degrees indoors for a long time, or 28 degrees for a short time. But according to measurements made, it can be warmer than that in nursing homes. The current temperature limits also do not apply in “extreme weather conditions”, such as in the event of a strong heat wave.

But this is something which can change when the Swedish Public Health Agency now changes its mind. For what was extremely hot before may become the new normal:

– A shorter heat wave is not extreme anymore, the weather has changed, says Elin Stenberg.

Ekot’s survey shows that managers in nursing homes from different parts of the country themselves believe that too little is being done to keep indoor temperatures down. This is how some write to Ekot:

“The heat is taking a toll on our elderly. All nursing homes should have a fixed cooling system “

“There is a great need for air conditioning in the apartments and in the public areas”

“Property owners should take greater responsibility”

“Everyone knows that older people have a hard time dealing with heat waves and can die from it, but no one takes the issue seriously and does something about it.”

Responsibility for indoor temperatures may be divided between those who run a nursing home and the property manager.

Lotta Johannesson’s father Curt Persson lived in a nursing home in Helsingborg. He died in connection with the heat wave in 2018. The nursing home was inspected by IVO, which did not criticize the activities run by Vardaga. The property manager has since also replaced the windows in the building so that they now have sun protection.

But Lotta Johannesson thinks that nursing homes should take greater responsibility for keeping temperatures down indoors.

– If you have an assignment, you have to make sure that the elderly are well. That’s why they live in a nursing home – for a reason, she says.

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