NEW YORK STATE OFFICE FOR THE AGING ENCOURAGES OLDER NEW YORKERS AND CAREGIVERS TO PREPARE FOR EXTREME HEAT THIS SUMMER DURING PANDEMIC
High Temperatures and Humidity Can Profoundly Affect the Health and Safety of Older Adults, Who Remain at High Risk for COVID-19
The New York State Office for the Aging (NYSOFA) is urging older New Yorkers and their family members to take precautions in extreme heat, as high temperatures and humidity, coupled with COVID-19, can create hazardous conditions for older adults. Exposure to extreme heat can cause a variety of health problems, including heat stroke and death.
“Extreme heat and humidity can be serious, and can be particularly dangerous for older adults, who are also at highest risk for COVID-19,” said NYSOFA Acting Director Greg Olsen. “Older adults, especially those who are low-income, live alone, have chronic conditions or who take certain medications, are more susceptible to heat-related illness. In these summer months, particularly during a heat wave in this pandemic, neighbors and family members should check in with older individuals daily to make sure they are healthy and safe.”
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heat causes more than 600 preventable deaths in the United States yearly. And COVID-19 presents particular challenges this summer since many places where people generally go to cool off, including cooling centers, libraries, and malls may be closed. Finding ways to stay cool and safe, both at home and outside, are more important than ever in this environment.
Staying cool during extreme heat and COVID-19
Those most at risk for heat-related illnesses and COVID-19
While everyone is at risk for heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk and should be sure to take special precautions, especially in these times of COVID-19. These populations include:
Protect family, friends, and neighbors
Prepare for, and help prevent, power outages
What to do during a power outage
New York State pools and beaches across the New York State Park system are open for individuals to cool off during hot days.
For more information on how to stay safe during periods of excessive heat , please visit the New York State Department of Health website.
For information on long term care services and supports for older adults and caregivers, please visit NY Connects or call 800-342-9871.