Category: Health Magazine, Winter 2024

Title:Study explores the dangers of working in extreme heat

silhouettes of people climbing a utility pole in bright sunlight
Photo: iStock

Writing in the New England Journal of Medicine, School of Health professor Rosemary K. Sokas and her colleague Emily Senay from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai outline three steps to close gaps in the management of workers impacted by extreme heat conditions: (1) more careful medical oversight of workers’ health, particularly of high-risk workers; (2) regulatory oversight of acclimatization and modified work–rest cycles; and (3) clinician support for workers during office visits to assess for heat risks.

“Most importantly, clinicians could work with their member organizations to advocate for meaningful regulatory and legislative action to protect workers amid the escalating climate crisis,” the authors write.

Federal and state data substantially underestimate heat-related mortality owing to underrecognition, misclassification, and failure to capture heat-associated exacerbations of underlying conditions and increases in traumatic injuries.

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