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Open AccessArticle

The Impact of Heat Waves on Emergency Department Admissions in Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S.A

1
Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4123, USA
2
Departments of Public Health Sciences and Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22908, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1436; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071436
Received: 13 June 2018 / Revised: 4 July 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 7 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
Heat waves have been linked to increases in emergency-related morbidity, but more research is needed on the demographic and disease-specific aspects of these morbidities. Using a case-crossover approach, over 700,000 daily emergency department hospital admissions in Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S.A. from 2005–2016 are compared between warm season heat wave and non-heat wave periods. Heat waves are defined based on the exceedance, for at least three consecutive days, of two apparent temperature thresholds (35 °C and 37 °C) that account for 3 and 6% of the period of record. Total admissions and admissions for whites, blacks, males, females, and 20–49 years old are significantly elevated during heat waves, as are admissions related to a variety of diagnostic categories, including diabetes, pregnancy complications, and injuries and poisoning. Evidence that heat waves raise emergency department admissions across numerous demographic and disease categories suggests that heat exerts comorbidity influences that extend beyond the more well-studied direct relationships such as heat strokes and cardiac arrest. View Full-Text
Keywords: heat wave; emergency admissions; heat-related morbidity; apparent temperature; Charlottesville, Virginia heat wave; emergency admissions; heat-related morbidity; apparent temperature; Charlottesville, Virginia
MDPI and ACS Style

Davis, R.E.; Novicoff, W.M. The Impact of Heat Waves on Emergency Department Admissions in Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S.A. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1436.

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