August 1,

Heat Alert Lifted by Health Unit

July 30, 2015 – With the return of cooler temperatures and less humid air, the Peterborough County-City Health Unit is lifting the Heat Alert issued on Monday, July 27, 2015.

The Health Unit has adopted a series of extreme heat thresholds designed to advise the public, health professionals and community service providers on appropriate measures they can take to reduce the health effects of hot, humid and smoggy weather. These advisories, comprised of a Heat Alert, Heat Warning and Heat Emergency, are issued when a hot or humid air mass is forecast and weather related health effects may occur.

While the Heat Alert has been lifted, residents are reminded to take precautions in hot weather, including drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated, keeping their homes cool and staying out of the heat whenever possible.  The Health Unit will continue to monitor the weather forecasts throughout the summer and issue heat alerts, warnings or emergencies when forecasted.  Further information about staying healthy in extreme heat conditions and the Health Unit’s Heat Alert and Response System can be found on www.pcchu.ca.

-30-

For further information, please contact:
Brittany Cadence
Communications Supervisor
705-743-1000, ext. 391

Posted in News, News Archive, What's New | Comments closed

Second Heat Alert of the Summer Issued

Weather-Alert-aJuly 27, 2015 – The Peterborough County-City Health Unit is issuing another Heat Alert for the City and County of Peterborough, and Curve Lake and Hiawatha First Nations.  The alert is issued for Monday, July 27 and will remain in effect until further notice.

This Heat Alert is being issued as the daytime temperatures are forecast to be at least 30 C today and 31 C for Tuesday while the humidex is expected to reach 36 for both days.  Weather forecasters are anticipating this heatwave will extend until Thursday, July 30.  Depending on changes to the weather forecast over the next few days, the Heat Alert may be elevated to a Heat Warning or lifted.

Extreme heat events are a potentially significant health risk and can have a severe impact on the health of vulnerable populations including infants, the elderly, shut-ins, persons with chronic diseases, the morbidly obese and the marginally housed.  Heat related illnesses such as dehydration, heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke are preventable.

“The elderly are some of the most vulnerable when it comes to the heat, especially if they are experiencing a chronic illness such as a heart condition,” explains Dr. Rosana Pellizzari, Medical Officer of Health. “It is vital to check on family, friends and neighbours to ensure they are remaining cool and are properly hydrated.”

If your home does not have air conditioning then you can visit a public building such as a library, community centre or shopping centre. In addition, avoid cooking in an oven to keep the temperature in your home down. Closing your blinds is another effective method of keeping the sun out, and keeping the temperature down.

Extreme heat is often accompanied by poor air quality.  The Health Unit would like to encourage residents to monitor the Air Quality Health Index found as a link on the Ministry of the Environment & Climate Change’s webpage and plan outdoor activities accordingly www.airqualityontario.com.

Public, air conditioned facilities such as malls, libraries and community centres are available to city and county residents seeking a place to cool off. Residents are advised to phone in advance to determine hours of operation.

 

-30-

 

For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence
Communications Supervisor
705-743-1000, ext. 391

Posted in Alerts Archive | Comments closed

Heat Alert Lifted

July 20, 2015 – With the return of cooler temperatures and less humid air, the Peterborough County-City Health Unit is lifting the Heat Alert issued on Friday, July 17, 2015 for Saturday, July 18 and Sunday July 19, 2015.

The Health Unit has adopted a series of extreme heat thresholds designed to advise the public, health professionals and community service providers on appropriate measures they can take to reduce the health effects of hot, humid and smoggy weather. These advisories, comprised of a Heat Alert, Heat Warning and Heat Emergency, are issued when a hot or humid air mass is forecast and weather related health effects may occur.

While the Heat Alert has been lifted, residents are reminded to take precautions in hot weather, including drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated, keeping their homes cool and staying out of the heat whenever possible.  The Health Unit will continue to monitor the weather forecasts throughout the summer and issue heat alerts, warnings or emergencies when forecasted.  Further information about staying healthy in extreme heat conditions and the Health Unit’s Heat Alert and Response System can be found on www.pcchu.ca .

 

-30-

 

For further information, please contact:
Wanda Tonus
Public Health Inspector
705-743-1000, ext. 285

Posted in News, News Archive, What's New | Comments closed

Heat Alert for City & County for July 18 & 19

July 17, 2015 – Residents Advised to Take Precautions to Avoid Heat-Related Illness

The PeterborouWeather-Alert-agh County-City Health Unit is issuing the area’s first Heat Alert of the season for Peterborough City and County.  The alert is issued for Saturday July 18 and Sunday, July 19.

The Health Unit has been closely monitoring the weather forecast for this weekend and early next week. This Heat Alert is being issued to help residents prepare for the hot, humid weather in the forecast.

A Heat Alert is issued when the daytime temperatures or Humidex are forecast to be at least 36°C or 36 for two or more consecutive days without a smog advisory. Depending on changes to the weather forecast over the next few days, the Heat Alert may be elevated to a Heat Warning or lifted.

Extreme heat events are a potentially significant health risk and can have a severe impact on the health of vulnerable populations including infants, the elderly, shut-ins, persons with chronic diseases, the morbidly obese and the marginally housed.  Heat related illnesses such as: dehydration; heat cramps; heat exhaustion; and heat stroke are preventable.  Most healthy people can tolerate a short period of hot and humid weather as long as they stay cool and drink plenty of fluids.

People taking medications may be more vulnerable to extreme heat as certain medications may interfere with the body’s cooling functions and water/salt retention. People taking antihypertensives, antidepressants, antipsychotics and anti-Parkinson’s agents are more likely to experience difficulty adapting to high temperatures and should consult with their healthcare provider to see if they are at an increased health risk in the heat.

In order to protect the health of people in Peterborough County and City, Curve Lake First Nation and Hiawatha First Nation, the Health Unit advises local residents to take the following precautions:

  • Drink lots of water and natural fruit juices even if you don’t feel very thirsty. Avoid alcoholic beverages, coffee and cola.
  • Avoid going out in the blazing sun or heat when possible. If you must go outside, stay in the shade as much as possible and plan to go out early in the morning or evening when it is cooler.
  • Go to air conditioned or cool places such as shopping malls, libraries, community centres or a friend’s place.
  • If you don’t have air conditioning, keep shades or drapes drawn and blinds closed on the sunny side of your home, but keep windows slightly open.
  • Keep lights off or turned down low.
  • Wear loose fitting, light clothing and a wide brimmed hat.
  • Take a cool bath or shower periodically or cool down with cool, wet towels.
  • Avoid heavy meals and using your oven.
  • Avoid intense or moderately intense physical activity.

 

Symptoms of heat exhaustion include:

  • heavy sweating
  • muscle cramps
  • weakness
  • headache
  • fainting
  • paleness, tiredness
  • dizziness, nausea

 

People experiencing the above symptoms should seek the care of a health care provider.

 

Often with forecasted extreme heat, comes forecasts for poor air quality.  The Health Unit would like to encourage residents to monitor the Air Quality Health Index found as a link on Environment Canada’s Weather page for Peterborough and plan outdoor activities accordingly http://weather.gc.ca/airquality/pages/onaq-013_e.html. This link can also be easily accessed on www.pcchu.ca in the section entitled “My Home & Environment – Air Quality – Outdoor”.

 

Public, air conditioned facilities such as malls, libraries and community centres are available to city and county residents seeking a place to cool off. Residents are advised to phone in advance to determine hours of operation.

 

-30-

 

For further information, please contact:

 

Wanda Tonuse

Public Health Inspector

705-743-1000, ext. 285

 

Posted in Alerts Archive, News, News Archive | Comments closed

2014 Annual Report Released: The Video

June 30, 2015 – Innovative Format Designed to Foster Community Conversation about Public Health

Today the Peterborough County-City Health Unit launched its 2014 Annual Report – this time as a three-minute video designed to make it easier for residents to understand the importance of public health and its progress last year on the local front.

“We wanted to create an Screen Shot 06-30-15 at 09.41 AMinnovative and accessible annual report that both promoted our many accomplishments in 2014 and showcased the way public health affects our daily lives,” said Dr. Rosana Pellizzari, Medical Officer of Health.  “I’m proud to introduce this video as a way to engageour community in our work.”

Dr. Pellizzari explained that the Health Unit will share the video widely as a way to encourage a community conversation about public health.  The Health Unit welcomes invitations from local organizations to present the video and discuss how its programs and services protect the public health of the community while promoting healthier lifestyles and addressing local priorities, such as poverty reduction.

The Health Unit’s 2014 Annual Report video is available at www.pcchu.ca where you will also find financial statements and remarks from the Medical Officer of Health and 2014 Board of Health Chair.

Health Unit highlights from 2014 include:

  • Establishing Peterborough’s first smoke-free condominium complex
  • Successfully earning the Baby-Friendly Initiative re-designation to support breastfeeding
  • Screening 4,144 elementary students for preventive dental health
  • Achieving 81% staff influenza immunization rate at local long-termcare facilities
  • Launching the fentanyl patch return program to prevent overdoses and the illegal use of painkillers
  • Conducting 1,839 food premises inspections to reduce the spread of foodborne illness

Public health is shaped by our social, economic and physical environments, as well as by our personal choices. Through community programs and by developing better health policies, the Peterborough County-City Health Unit works to improve the living conditions of those in need for the benefit of all. We serve residents throughout the City and County of Peterborough, and Curve Lake and Hiawatha First Nations, offering a wide range of public health programs and services. These include healthy eating workshops, poverty reduction initiatives, family home visits, oral health clinics, controlling infectious disease outbreaks, water safety and sexual health clinic services.

-30-

 

For further information, please contact:
Brittany Cadence
Communications Supervisor
705-743-1000, ext. 391

Posted in News, News Archive, What's New | Comments closed