New Delhi: The World Health Organization on Wednesday (July 19) urged governments and local authorities to set up a strong surveillance system for people who are most at risk of severe symptoms from a heatwave that is baking the northern hemisphere. People with cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and diabetes, as well as pregnant women, children and homeless people, are seen as the most vulnerable to heatwaves that have scorched parts of Europe, Asia and the United States this week.
Maria Neira, director of the public health, environment and social determinants of health department at the WHO, told journalists on Wednesday (July 19),
We are very concerned about those who are most vulnerable. And clearly, the heatwaves can exacerbate all of those pre existing diseases.
Global warming has been further exacerbating the issue, causing erratic weather patterns globally.
While some are facing heatwaves, heavy rains have pummeled central and southern regions of South Korea since last week while in northern India, flash floods, landslides and accidents related to heavy rainfall have killed more than 100 people since the onset of the monsoon season on June 1, Ms. Neira said,
In the medium and long term, we need to decarbonize our society as well
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NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – theLGBTQ population,indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the currentCOVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water,SanitationandHygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fightmalnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health,adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues likeair pollution,waste management,plastic ban,manual scavengingand sanitation workers andmenstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India wheretoiletsare used andopen defecation free (ODF)status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched byPrime Minister Narendra Modiin 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.