Heatwaves and Hospital Admissions for Mental Disorders in Northern Vietnam.
ABSTRACT: Studies in high-income countries have shown an association between heatwaves and hospital admissions for mental disorders. It is unknown whether such associations exist in subtropical nations like Vietnam. The study aim was to investigate whether hospital admissions for mental disorders may be triggered, or exacerbated, by heat exposure and heatwaves, in a low- and middle-income country, Vietnam. For this, we used data from the Hanoi Mental Hospital over five years (2008-2012) to estimate the effect of heatwaves on admissions for mental disorders. A zero-inflated negative binomial regression model accounting for seasonality, time trend, days of week, and mean humidity was used to analyse the relationship. Heatwave events were mainly studied as periods of three or seven consecutive days above the threshold of 35°C daily maximum temperature (90th percentile). The study result showed heatwaves increased the risk for admission in the whole group of mental disorders (F00-79) for more persistent heatwaves of at least 3 days when compared with non-heatwave periods. The relative risks were estimated at 1.04 (0.95-1.13), 1.15 (1.005-1.31), and 1.36 (1-1.90) for a one-, three- and seven-day heatwave, respectively. Admissions for mental disorders increased among men, residents in rural communities, and the elderly population during heatwaves. The groups of organic mental disorders, including symptomatic illnesses (F0-9) and mental retardation (F70-79), had increased admissions during heatwaves. The findings are novel in their focus on heatwave impact on mental diseases in a population habituating in a subtropical low- and middle-income country characterized by rapid epidemiological transitions and environmental changes.
Project description:Background: There is a lack of knowledge concerning the effects of ambient heat exposure on morbidity in Northern Europe. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the relationships of daily summertime temperature and heatwaves with cardiorespiratory hospital admissions in the Helsinki metropolitan area, Finland. Methods: Time series models adjusted for potential confounders, such as air pollution, were used to investigate the associations of daily temperature and heatwaves with cause-specific cardiorespiratory hospital admissions during summer months of 2001-2017. Daily number of hospitalizations was obtained from the national hospital discharge register and weather information from the Finnish Meteorological Institute. Results: Increased daily temperature was associated with a decreased risk of total respiratory hospital admissions and asthma. Heatwave days were associated with 20.5% (95% CI: 6.9, 35.9) increased risk of pneumonia admissions and during long or intense heatwaves also with total respiratory admissions in the oldest age group (?75 years). There were also suggestive positive associations between heatwave days and admissions due to myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular diseases. In contrast, risk of arrhythmia admissions decreased 20.8% (95% CI: 8.0, 31.8) during heatwaves. Conclusions: Heatwaves, rather than single hot days, are a health threat affecting morbidity even in a Northern climate.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Heat-related impacts may have greater public health implications as climate change continues. It is important to appropriately characterize the relationship between heatwave and health outcomes. However, it is unclear whether a case-crossover design can be effectively used to assess the event- or episode-related health effects. This study examined the association between exposure to heatwaves and mortality and emergency hospital admissions (EHAs) from non-external causes in Brisbane, Australia, using both case-crossover and time series analyses approaches.<h4>Methods</h4>Poisson generalised additive model (GAM) and time-stratified case-crossover analyses were used to assess the short-term impact of heatwaves on mortality and EHAs. Heatwaves exhibited a significant impact on mortality and EHAs after adjusting for air pollution, day of the week, and season.<h4>Results</h4>For time-stratified case-crossover analysis, odds ratios of mortality and EHAs during heatwaves were 1.62 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.36-1.94) and 1.22 (95% CI: 1.14-1.30) at lag 1, respectively. Time series GAM models gave similar results. Relative risks of mortality and EHAs ranged from 1.72 (95% CI: 1.40-2.11) to 1.81 (95% CI: 1.56-2.10) and from 1.14 (95% CI: 1.06-1.23) to 1.28 (95% CI: 1.21-1.36) at lag 1, respectively. The risk estimates gradually attenuated after the lag of one day for both case-crossover and time series analyses.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The risk estimates from both case-crossover and time series models were consistent and comparable. This finding may have implications for future research on the assessment of event- or episode-related (e.g., heatwave) health effects.
Project description:Prolonged high-temperature extreme events in the ocean, marine heatwaves, can have severe and long-lasting impacts on marine ecosystems, fisheries and associated services. This study applies a marine heatwave framework to analyse a global sea surface temperature product and identify the most extreme events, based on their intensity, duration and spatial extent. Many of these events have yet to be described in terms of their physical attributes, generation mechanisms, or ecological impacts. Our synthesis identifies commonalities between marine heatwave characteristics and seasonality, links to the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, triggering processes and impacts on ocean productivity. The most intense events preferentially occur in summer, when climatological oceanic mixed layers are shallow and winds are weak, but at a time preceding climatological maximum sea surface temperatures. Most subtropical extreme marine heatwaves were triggered by persistent atmospheric high-pressure systems and anomalously weak wind speeds, associated with increased insolation, and reduced ocean heat losses. Furthermore, the most extreme events tended to coincide with reduced chlorophyll-a concentration at low and mid-latitudes. Understanding the importance of the oceanic background state, local and remote drivers and the ocean productivity response from past events are critical steps toward improving predictions of future marine heatwaves and their impacts.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>To our knowledge, no study has assessed the association between heatwaves and risk of hospitalization and how it may change over time in Brazil. We quantified the heatwave-hospitalization association in Brazil during 2000-2015.<h4>Methods and findings</h4>Daily data on hospitalization and temperature were collected from 1,814 cities (>78% of the national population) in the hottest five consecutive months during 2000-2015. Twelve types of heatwaves were defined with daily mean temperatures of ?90th, 92.5th, 95th, or 97.5th percentiles of year-round temperature and durations of ?2, 3, or 4 consecutive days. The city-specific association was estimated using a quasi-Poisson regression with constrained distributed lag model and then pooled at the national level using random-effect meta-analysis. Stratified analyses were performed by five regions, sex, 10 age groups, and nine cause categories. The temporal change in the heatwave-hospitalization association was assessed using a time-varying constrained distributed lag model. Of the 58,400,682 hospitalizations (59% women), 24%, 34%, 21%, and 19% of cases were aged <20, 20-39, 40-59, and ?60 years, respectively. The city-specific year-round daily mean temperatures were 23.5 ± 2.8 °C on average, varying from 26.8 ± 1.8 °C for the 90th percentile to 28.0 ± 1.6 °C for the 97.5th percentile. We observed that the risk of hospitalization was most pronounced for heatwaves characterized by high daily temperatures and long durations across Brazil, except for the minimal association in the north (the hottest region). After controlling for temperature, the association remained for severe heatwaves in the south and southeast (cold regions). Children 0-9 years, the elderly ?70 years, and admissions for perinatal conditions were most strongly associated with heatwaves. Over the study period, the strength of the heatwave-hospitalization association declined substantially in the south, while an apparent increase was observed in the southeast. The main limitations of this study included the lack of data on individual temperature exposure and measured air pollution.<h4>Conclusions</h4>There are geographic, demographic, cause-specific, and temporal variations in the heatwave-hospitalization associations across the Brazilian population. Considering the projected increase in frequency, duration, and intensity of heatwaves, future strategies should be developed, such as building early warning systems, to reduce the health risk associated with heatwaves in Brazil.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Heatwaves are a critical public health problem. There will be an increase in the frequency and severity of heatwaves under changing climate. However, evidence about the impacts of climate change on heatwave-related mortality at a global scale is limited.<h4>Methods and findings</h4>We collected historical daily time series of mean temperature and mortality for all causes or nonexternal causes, in periods ranging from January 1, 1984, to December 31, 2015, in 412 communities within 20 countries/regions. We estimated heatwave-mortality associations through a two-stage time series design. Current and future daily mean temperature series were projected under four scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions from 1971-2099, with five general circulation models. We projected excess mortality in relation to heatwaves in the future under each scenario of greenhouse gas emissions, with two assumptions for adaptation (no adaptation and hypothetical adaptation) and three scenarios of population change (high variant, median variant, and low variant). Results show that, if there is no adaptation, heatwave-related excess mortality is expected to increase the most in tropical and subtropical countries/regions (close to the equator), while European countries and the United States will have smaller percent increases in heatwave-related excess mortality. The higher the population variant and the greenhouse gas emissions, the higher the increase of heatwave-related excess mortality in the future. The changes in 2031-2080 compared with 1971-2020 range from approximately 2,000% in Colombia to 150% in Moldova under the highest emission scenario and high-variant population scenario, without any adaptation. If we considered hypothetical adaptation to future climate, under high-variant population scenario and all scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions, the heatwave-related excess mortality is expected to still increase across all the countries/regions except Moldova and Japan. However, the increase would be much smaller than the no adaptation scenario. The simple assumptions with respect to adaptation as follows: no adaptation and hypothetical adaptation results in some uncertainties of projections.<h4>Conclusions</h4>This study provides a comprehensive characterisation of future heatwave-related excess mortality across various regions and under alternative scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions, different assumptions of adaptation, and different scenarios of population change. The projections can help decision makers in planning adaptation and mitigation strategies for climate change.
Project description:Heatwaves are divided between moderate, more common heatwaves and rare "high-mortality" heatwaves that have extremely large health effects per day, which we define as heatwaves with a 20% or higher increase in mortality risk. Better projections of the expected frequency of and exposure to these separate types of heatwaves could help communities optimize heat mitigation and response plans and gauge the potential benefits of limiting climate change. Whether a heatwave is high-mortality or moderate could depend on multiple heatwave characteristics, including intensity, length, and timing. We created heatwave classification models using a heatwave training dataset created using recent (1987-2005) health and weather data from 82 large US urban communities. We built twenty potential classification models and used Monte Carlo cross-validations to evaluate these models. We ultimately identified several models that can adequately classify high-mortality heatwaves. These models can be used to project future trends in high-mortality heatwaves under different scenarios of a changing future (e.g., climate change, population change). Further, these models are novel in the way they allow exploration of different scenarios of adaptation to heat, as they include, as predictive variables, heatwave characteristics that are measured relative to a community's temperature distribution, allowing different adaptation scenarios to be explored by selecting alternative community temperature distributions. The three selected models have been placed on GitHub for use by other researchers, and we use them in a companion paper to project trends in high-mortality heatwaves under different climate, population, and adaptation scenarios.
Project description:Heatwaves are extended periods of unusually high temperatures with significant societal and environmental impacts. Despite their significance, there is not a generalized definition for heatwaves. In this paper, we introduce a multi-method global heatwave and warm-spell data record and analysis toolbox (named GHWR). In addition to a comprehensive long-term global data record of heatwaves, GHWR allows processing and extracting heatwave records for any location efficiently. We use traditional constant temperature threshold methods, as well as spatially and temporally localized threshold approaches to identify heatwaves. GHWR includes binary (0/1) occurrence records of heatwaves/warm-spells, and annual summary files with detailed information on their frequency, duration, magnitude and amplitude. GHWR also introduces the standardized heat index (SHI) as a generalized statistical metric to identify heatwave/warm-spells. SHI has direct association with the probability distribution function of long-term daily temperatures for any given calendar day and spatial grid. Finally, GHWR offers a unique opportunity for users to select the type of heatwave/warm-spell information from a plethora of methods based on their needs and applications.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Many studies have shown associations between rising temperatures, El Niño events and dengue incidence, but the effect of sustained periods of extreme high temperatures (i.e., heatwaves) on dengue outbreaks has not yet been investigated. This study aimed to compare the short-term temperature-dengue associations during different dengue outbreak periods, estimate the dengue cases attributable to temperature, and ascertain if there was an association between heatwaves and dengue outbreaks in Hanoi, Vietnam. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:Dengue outbreaks were assigned to one of three categories (small, medium and large) based on the 50th, 75th, and 90th percentiles of distribution of weekly dengue cases during 2008-2016. Using a generalised linear regression model with a negative binomial link that controlled for temporal trends, temperature variation, rainfall and population size over time, we examined and compared associations between weekly average temperature and weekly dengue incidence for different outbreak categories. The same model using weeks with or without heatwaves as binary variables was applied to examine the potential effects of extreme heatwaves, defined as seven or more days with temperatures above the 95th percentile of daily temperature distribution during the study period. This study included 55,801 dengue cases, with an average of 119 (range: 0 to 1454) cases per week. The exposure-response relationship between temperature and dengue risk was non-linear and differed with dengue category. After considering the delayed effects of temperature (one week lag), we estimated that 4.6%, 11.6%, and 21.9% of incident cases during small, medium, and large outbreaks were attributable to temperature. We found evidence of an association between heatwaves and dengue outbreaks, with longer delayed effects on large outbreaks (around 14 weeks later) than small and medium outbreaks (4 to 9 weeks later). Compared with non-heatwave years, dengue outbreaks (i.e., small, moderate and large outbreaks combined) in heatwave years had higher weekly number of dengue cases (p<0.05). Findings were robust under different sensitivity analyses. CONCLUSIONS:The short-term association between temperature and dengue risk varied by the level of outbreaks and temperature seems more likely affect large outbreaks. Moreover, heatwaves may delay the timing and increase the magnitude of dengue outbreaks.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>There is an expected increase in heatwaves globally. As such, it is imperative to have sufficient levels of heatwave-protective knowledge and behaviour in areas regularly affected by heatwaves. Our study assessed this among urban populations in Tunisia, Georgia and Israel.<h4>Methods</h4>We undertook a cross-sectional population survey in the three countries. The questionnaire focused on obtaining information on respondents' knowledge level regarding 1) symptoms due to overheating, 2) risk groups for heatwaves, 3) actions to take when someone is overheated, and 4) heatwave-protective measures. Furthermore, we asked respondents about protective measures they applied during the last heatwave. We compared the results between the countries.<h4>Results</h4>Heatwave-protective knowledge was highest in Israel, and lowest in Georgia, for all indicators except for heatwave-protective measures, for which knowledge was highest in Tunisia. Most respondents who named certain protective measures had also applied these during the last heatwave: more than 90% for all measures except for one in Tunisia and Israel, and more than 80% for all measures in Georgia.<h4>Conclusion</h4>There is a need to further improve heatwave-protective knowledge in Tunisia, Georgia and Israel. One potential solution to achieve this is by implementing a National Heat Health Action Plan. Improving knowledge is a vital step before adaptive behaviour can take place.
Project description:Some rare heatwaves have extreme daily mortality impacts; moderate heatwaves have lower daily impacts but occur much more frequently at present and so account for large aggregated impacts. We applied health-based models to project trends in high-mortality heatwaves, including proportion of all heatwaves expected to be high-mortality, using the definition that a high-mortality heatwave increases mortality risk by ?20 %. We projected these trends in 82 US communities in 2061-2080 under two scenarios of climate change (RCP4.5, RCP8.5), two scenarios of population change (SSP3, SSP5), and three scenarios of community adaptation to heat (none, lagged, on-pace) for large- and medium-ensemble versions of the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Community Earth System Model. More high-mortality heatwaves were expected compared to present under all scenarios except on-pace adaptation, and population exposure was expected to increase under all scenarios. At least seven more high-mortality heatwaves were expected in a twenty-year period in the 82 study communities under RCP8.5 than RCP4.5 when assuming no adaptation. However, high-mortality heatwaves were expected to remain <1 % of all heatwaves and heatwave exposure under all scenarios. Projections were most strongly influenced by the adaptation scenario- going from a scenario of on-pace to lagged adaptation or from lagged to no adaptation more than doubled the projected number of and exposure to high-mortality heatwaves. Based on our results, fewer high-mortality heatwaves are expected when following RCP4.5 versus RCP8.5 and under higher levels of adaptation, but high-mortality heatwaves are expected to remain a very small proportion of total heatwave exposure.