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Health officials address upcoming heat wave in BC

With warmer temperatures coming to Prince George and heat warnings issued for parts of BC, health officials reassured residents that health and emergency services will be available to help people through the upcoming heatwave.

Temperatures are expected to hover around the high 20’s to low 30’s in Prince George and Vanderhoof over the next couple of days, with a high of 33 expected for both communities on Friday.

“As we look forward to another few days of extreme heat, we’re kicking our response again into high gear,” said Health Minister Adrian Dix.

He says all five health authorities in BC are fully prepared to assist anyone experiencing heat or smoke-related challenges.

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“In acute care, the staff is being increased in ER’s to meet expected demand, and additional measures are being taken to keep people in hospital cool and safe,” he explained.

Some elective surgeries that are scheduled to be completed in Kelowna, Vernon, and Kamloops are going to be postponed in order to comply with expected demands from the heatwave.

Meanwhile, in Long Term Care facilities, workers will be taking extra precautions to ensure residents are cool and properly hydrated.

“If you or a loved one experience heat-related illness and you need help, call 911. The BC Ambulance Service remains ready to serve you, paramedics and dispatchers are on deck to get help quickly to people who call for it,” added Dix.

He adds paramedics across the province are being prepared to conduct work in hotter weather.

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Environment Canada has issued heat warnings for sections of the North coast and southwestern areas of the province.

The extreme heatwave seen earlier this summer was linked to at least 569 premature deaths in BC.

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