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Welsh care homes urged to adapt to 1.2°C temperature gains

The need for care homes to adapt to higher global temperatures has been set out by the Welsh chief medical officer in his 2022 report.

Restoring our Health  notes that by the 2050s, Wales will experience a rise in annual temperatures of 1.2°C and a 6 per cent rise in winter rainfall.

In summer 2022, the Welsh Government has pledged to consult on, and publish, a Public Engagement Strategy setting out how everyone in Wales can deliver the ambition for the public sector in Wales to be collectively net-zero by 2030, set out in Net Zero Wales. In social care, carbon footprint determinations and a decarbonisation routemap are scheduled for delivery nu the end of this month, CMO Sir Frank Atherton notes.  

Heat stress or respiratory disease brought about by increased temperatures, or ongoing mental health impacts from flooding or extreme weather are among the issues that health services will be dealing with at higher frequencies.

According to Sir Atherton, demographically, Wales’ increasing older population is particularly susceptible to climate risks, and this could lead to an increased demand for social care and supporting services, while at the same time causing serious disruption to the delivery of these services.  

Also in the vision for health and care in Wales, the CMO highlights increasing use of integrated community care services to deliver increased provision of recovery, rehabilitation and health services in care homes, as well as safe visiting into and out of care homes.

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