New heat map in Spain: in Córdoba mortality skyrockets from 41.4ºAJ GONZÁLEZ

He Ministry of Health activates this Monday a more precise map to measure the impact of heat on health, now divided into more than 180 geographical zones, each of which is associated with a maximum temperature threshold from which mortality skyrockets, which in Córdoba It is 41.4 degrees Celsius, the highest in Spain. The health map also includes a series of measures in response to the arrival of high temperatures.

The new map maintains the 52 provincial reference units that the previous ones had, one for each provincial capital plus the autonomous cities, but this year it adds as a novelty more than a hundred meteohealth zones, areas of territory that maintain a homogeneous temperature behavior and of which there may be several in one single province.

Thus, the map of studied areas rises from 52 to 182, as contemplated in the National Plan for Preventive Actions for the Effects of Excess Temperatures on Healthwhich the Ministry has been using for more than 20 years to calculate the effects of heat on health and which will be valid – at least, since it can be extended if circumstances so require – until September 30.

Since last May 16, alerts have been active at the provincial level, since the Interministerial Commission for the effective application of the National Plan for Preventive Actions for the Effects of Excess Temperatures on Healthdecided to postpone the launch of the new meteohealth areas until today.

For each of these areas, and with the information provided daily by the State Meteorological Agency (Aemet), the plan assigns a maximum temperature threshold from which the harmful effects of heat and that, given the enormous geographical variability of Spain, they are not the same everywhere.

An urban thermometer reads 42º.

The highest heat limits

Thus, the plan reserves the highest limits for the Andalusian capitals (ranging from 35.5 degrees in Almería and 37.2 in Malaga to 40.5 in Seville and 41.4 in Cordovathe highest in all of Spain), Extremadura (37.2 in Cáceres and 40 in Badajoz) and Murcia (38.8).

In Castilla-La Mancha, they range between 36 in Cuenca, 37.9 in Toledo and 38.1 in Ciudad Real; In Aragon, the maximum threshold is Zaragoza (38) compared to 36.7 in Teruel and 34.5 in Huesca and in Catalonia, Lleida has the highest value (37.9) and Barcelona the lowest (31).

Madrid is assigned 35.6 degrees; La Rioja 34.5 and Navarra, 34.4; In Galicia there is the greatest variability, with 27.5 in A Coruña but 37.4 in Ourense; In Castilla y León, the risk threshold is 36.1 degrees in Zamora, 36.9 in Valladolid and 35.3 in Salamanca, which drops to values ​​around 33 in the rest.

The same 33 degrees or a little more are set for Araba and Bizkaia, Las Palmas, the Balearic Islands, Ceuta and Melilla, and a few tenths less in Alicante (31.8) and Castellón (32.8). The lowest values ​​are found in Cantabria (26.6) and Asturias (26.4).

Increased mortality

For every degree that temperature environment exceeds these thresholds, the risk of mortality attributable to high temperatures increases between 9.1% and 10.7%, that is, for each day there is an episode of extreme heatmortality increases, on average, in 3 deaths a day.

Depending on the number of days in which these thresholds are exceeded, the plan determines four risk levels, ranging from from ‘Level 0’ to ‘Level 3’each of which carries a series of measures to coordinate all the agents involved, from the different ministries and regional officials to health professionals and social services.

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