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The value of local heatwave impact assessment: a case-crossover analysis of hospital emergency department presentations in Tasmania, Australia


Campbell, SL and Remenyi, TA and Williamson, GJ and White, CJ and Johnston, FH, The value of local heatwave impact assessment: a case-crossover analysis of hospital emergency department presentations in Tasmania, Australia, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16, (19) Article 3715. ISSN 1661-7827 (2019) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2019 The Author(s) Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.3390/ijerph16193715


Heatwaves have been identified as a threat to human health, with this impact projected to rise in a warming climate. Gaps in local knowledge can potentially undermine appropriate policy and preparedness actions. Using a case-crossover methodology, we examined the impact of heatwave events on hospital emergency department (ED) presentations in the two most populous regions of Tasmania, Australia, from 20082016. Using conditional logistic regression, we analyzed the relationship between ED presentations and severe/extreme heatwaves for the whole population, specific demographics including age, gender and socio-economic advantage, and diagnostic conditions that are known to be impacted in high temperatures. ED presentations increased by 5% (OR 1.05, 95% CI 1.011.09) across the whole population, by 13% (OR 1.13, 95% CI 1.031.24) for children 15 years and under, and by 19% (OR 1.19, 95% CI 1.041.36) for children 5 years and under. A less precise association in the same direction was found for those over 65 years. For diagnostic subgroups, non-significant increases in ED presentations were observed for asthma, diabetes, hypertension, and atrial fibrillation. These findings may assist ED surge capacity planning and public health preparedness and response activities for heatwave events in Tasmania, highlighting the importance of using local research to inform local practice.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:heat wave, health, Tasmania, extreme heat, morbidity, health effects, emergency presentation, case-crossover
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Epidemiology
Research Field:Epidemiology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Health protection and disaster response
UTAS Author:Campbell, SL (Dr Sharon Campbell)
UTAS Author:Remenyi, TA (Dr Tom Remenyi)
UTAS Author:Williamson, GJ (Dr Grant Williamson)
UTAS Author:White, CJ (Dr Chris White)
UTAS Author:Johnston, FH (Professor Fay Johnston)
ID Code:135144
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:11
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2019-10-03
Last Modified:2019-11-12
Downloads:32 View Download Statistics

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