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HEALTH IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN HUNGARY - A REVIEW OF RESULTS AND POSSIBILITIES TO HELP ADAPTATION
2014.12.16.

ANNA PALDY AND JANOS BOBVOS
Central European Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014; 20(1-2):51-67

Central European Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014; 20(1-2):51-67 HEALTH IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN HUNGARY - AREVIEW OF RESULTS AND POSSIBILITIES TO HELP ADAPTATION ANNA PALDY AND JANOS BOBVOS National Institute of Environmental Health, Budapest, Hungary ABSTRACT: The paper reviews the results of the studies on the topic of health impacts of heat waves in Hungary. Climate change related research started in Hungary at the beginning of the 2000 years. The health impact assessments of climate change was carried out, the effects of heat/heat waves based on real-time health data was continuously followed. The 3-level heat health warning system based on the daily mortality and meteorological data of Budapest was introduced in 2005.The study of the association between excess mortality and temperature was based on the 31-year time series analysis of the period of 1970-2000 of Budapest. The study revealed signifi-cant associations between daily mean temperature and mortality. Similar studies were carried out in relation to Budapest and Pest County as well as to Szeged and Csongrád County, respectively, for the period of 1996-2004. The results did not differ significantly from those of Budapest, so the effect could be extrapolated to the rural areas and generalized for the whole country. In 2007 the strongest heat wave ever hit Hungary was recorded. Based on real time mortality data an excess mortality of 36% was recorded in the Central Hungarian Region. In the summer periods of 2003-2012, besides 2007 there were two more extreme hot summers: 2003 and 2012. The yearly number of heat waves was between two and five, longer and longer heat waves affected the Carpathian Basin, the effect of heat could be seen in each year in spite of the warning system. The excess mortality was greater during the heat waves in June-July than in August. The association of emergency ambulance calls and daily mean temperature was also studied using the data of Budapest. The increase of temperature significantly increased the calls due to cardiovascular diseases, while the greatest impact was revealed in the calls due to malaise. The predicted impact of climate change was also assessed using a medium level emission scenario A1B (supposing that economy will switch to an environment-friendly sustainable devel-opment) based on the RegCM regional climate model by 10 km grids for the Carpathian Basin. The rate of days with mean temperature >25 C (threshold of heat alert) would increase by 45% in 2021-2050 in relation to the reference period, while this increase would be 373% in 2070-2100. The mean number of excess death cases per year will increase by 120% in 2021-2050 and by 780% in 2071-2100. Due to the high sensitivity of the Hungarian population more effective preventive measures would be desirable to decrease vulnerability and enhance adaptive capacity to adverse health impacts of climate change. KEY WORDS: climate change, mortality, emergency call, vulnerability, adaptation

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ANNA PALDY AND JANOS BOBVOS
Central European Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014; 20(1-2):51-67
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