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Extreme heat a public health crisis, says equity nonprofit [Video]

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Summer is quickly approaching, and that means heat — and lots of it. Climate change has made summers hotter, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, a nonprofit focused on health equity, wants to get the word out that extreme heat is not just a climate issue — it’s also a public health crisis.

Dr. Alonzo Plough, chief science officer at the Foundation, says extreme heat has a profound effect on the population.

“More people die of heat-related illnesses than any other disaster combined — tornadoes, hurricanes, floods,” Pough said. “And heat is particularly hard on vulnerable populations: elders, children, pregnant women — who can have premature deliveries because of extreme heat.”

And he says the consequences of extreme heat are not experienced by everyone equally.

“Unfortunately, it is more impactful on people who are low-income and many people who live in communities of color, where their neighborhood conditions are …

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