The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) and Met Office guidance currently remains in force until 12pm, Tuesday (5th December), with daytime temperatures stuck in single figures, freezing nights and possible snow or rain falling on chilly ground causing icy conditions.
A yellow Cold-Health Alert means vulnerable people including the elderly, very young, pregnant mums, and people with long-term health conditions, are at increased risk of falling ill and potentially needing NHS services.
Given this, residents are asked to check in on vulnerable family, friends and neighbours to make sure they keep safe and follow practical advice.
The guidance is the first Cold-Health Alert issued under UKHSA's Adverse Weather and Health Plan which was rolled out nationally in spring.
“Heating one room to at least 18°c, having hot food and drinks and getting the free seasonal vaccines on offer if eligible can all help protect against illness brought on by the cold”
KCC Director of Public Health, Dr Anjan Ghosh, said: “Staying warm and well during cold spells is important for everyone, but particularly for people who are more susceptible to low temperatures.
“Given the sometimes delayed impacts of cold weather on our health, please keep looking out for the vulnerable people in your life, including our older residents, the very young, anyone with heart and respiratory conditions or poor mental health - and follow common sense advice. If you are struggling, please visit kent.gov to find out what help is available.
“Heating one room to at least 18°c, having hot food and drinks and getting the free seasonal vaccines on offer if eligible can all help protect against illness brought on by the cold, such as heart attacks and strokes – reducing the need for NHS treatment or trip to A&E.”
“If you do need NHS help, NHS 111, online or via phone, is there for you and we list all pharmacies and urgent treatment centres at www.stopthinkchoose.co.uk”
Kate Langford, Chief Medical Officer at NHS Kent and Medway, said: “Prolonged cold weather can be a risk for anyone, but those who are vulnerable, including elderly people, those with breathing difficulties, and children under five, are particularly at risk.
"If you do need NHS help, NHS 111, online or via phone, is there for you and we list all pharmacies and urgent treatment centres at www.stopthinkchoose.co.uk.”
- Visit kent.gov/winterhealth and ‘Keep well and be a winter friend this winter’ for more information about how to keep yourself and others safe during very cold weather.
- Read more about how to get your home and property ‘winter ready’ and keeping your home warm this winter on the Met Office website.
- In an emergency, always call 999, but avoid using the blue-light services and A&E if you don’t need to. If you are in any doubt about what health service to use, visit Stop, Think, Chose or call NHS111 so you get the right treatment. You can also download the NHS app to access a range of health services from your phone or tablet.
- Always check before you travel; follow @GrittingKent and @KCCHighways on X.