There is conclusive evidence that extreme heat and heatwaves have negative impacts on health. Even modest increases above average temperatures can have negative impacts on those most vulnerable to heat, but effective planning can reduce the effects of heat on health.

These guidelines are intended to raise awareness of the risks of hot weather to health, and to encourage and support the development of Heat Health Plans. Heat Health Plans outline the actions and systems in place to support those most at risk during periods of extreme heat and it is recommended that individuals, health and community service providers, district health boards, public health units and local government prepare their own Heat Health Plans as part of their emergency planning.

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