The Indian city of Ahmedabad launched a first-of-its-kind Heat Action Plan on 16 April 2013. With this it became the first city in South Asia to launch a Heat Action Plan (HAP).
The launch of this Heat Action Plan is part of a broader collaboration dating back to early 2011 between AMC and public health and policy experts at the Indian Institute of Public Health.
The Heat Action plan is meant to inform citizens about extreme climates in the near future and with the necessary steps to tackle it.
The idea behind approaching towards Heat action plan came after seeing soaring of Temperatures in the city during summers in Gujarat which has risen up to as high as 47 degrees resulting in deaths due to intense heat wave conditions and strokes.
The Heat Action Plan was introduced in Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation and directly aims to provide a framework for the implementation, coordination, and evaluation of extreme heat response activities in the city to reduce the negative health impact of extreme heat.
The major objective of the plan is to make aware the population who are mostly at the risk of heat-related illness when extreme heat conditions either exist or are imminent.
The civic body has tied up with Georgia Institute of Technology in United States of America (USA), Rollins School of Public Health of Emory University, Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH) and Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC), a US-based international advocacy group, for this project.
Ahmedabad’s Heat Action Plan depicts both immediate and longer-term actions to increase vigilance, information-sharing, and response coordination to reduce the health effects of heat on vulnerable populations.
The High points of the Heat Action plan are as under
• Preventative training and awareness building for medical professionals and slum community outreach workers.
• Heat-health protection trainings for school children, outdoor workers, and other vulnerable groups.
• Communications outreach, such as an early warning system that will immediately alert the public of impending heat waves, the distribution of multilingual pamphlets, and long-term awareness-building ad campaigns.
• Coordinated action by government agencies at the municipal, state, and national levels to ensure successful implementation of the preparedness plan and warning system.