Extreme heat threatens the health of Australians

Marion G Carey, Mark P Monaghan and Fiona J Stanley
Med J Aust 2017; 207 (6): . || doi: 10.5694/mja17.00511
Published online: 18 September 2017

Heatwaves have serious health impacts and we need a better approach to prevention and management

Last year was the world’s hottest on record, with anthropogenic global warming raising average temperatures about 1°C above pre-industrial levels.1 Even small increases in the average temperature influence extremes of hot weather. Heatwaves are becoming hotter, longer and more frequent, and are increasing the risk of bushfires.2 The number of record hot days in Australia has doubled in the past 50 years,2 and marine heatwaves are causing severe coral bleaching in the Great Barrier Reef.3

  • 1 University of Notre Dame Australia, Sydney, NSW
  • 2 Fiona Stanley Hospital, Perth, WA
  • 3 Telethon Kids Institute, Perth, WA
  • 4 University of Western Australia, Perth, WA

Competing interests:

Fiona Stanley is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA), and Marion Carey and Mark Monaghan are members of DEA.


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