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Emergency Advice

17 December 2015

Southern NSW Local Health District Urges Caution As High Temperatures Are Forecast

The Bureau of Meteorology is predicting that there will be very high temperatures in parts of NSW over the coming days and Southern NSW Local Health District is urging people to take the risk of heat-related illness seriously.

The Heatwave Service shows heatwave conditions extending into southwestern NSW over the next few days, then further across into southeastern NSW over the weekend. 

Dr Thérèse Jones, Director Population Healthsaid that while heat-related illness may affect anyone, certain groups are particularly vulnerable. These include the over 75s, infants and children, people with a chronic medical condition and people who live alone.

“During a heat wave, it is very important to stay in regular contact with your elderly friends, neighbours and relatives, and to look out for other vulnerable members of your community,” she said.

Some simple precautions will help people minimise their risk of heat-related illness:

·      Drink plenty of water, and remember to carry some with you when you’re out and about

·      Avoid alcoholic, hot or sugary drinks.

·      Plan your day around the heat. Stay indoors between 11am and 3pm and minimise physical activity.

·      Keep the sun out of your house by shading windows with an awning, shade-cloth or plants.  Shutting curtains will also help.

·      Keep windows closed during the day. Open them when it cools down at night or the early morning.

·      If you have an air-conditioner, make sure it’s working.

·      If you don’t have an air-conditioner, try to spend some time in an air-conditioned place like a shopping centre, library or cinema.

·      Wear light, loose fitting clothing made from natural fibres like cotton.

“Signs of heat-related illness include confusion, dizziness, fainting, nausea, vomiting, weakness, headaches and loss of sweating,” Dr Jones said.

“People showing any of these signs should seek urgent medical attention through their GP or local emergency department.”

More information about Beat the Heat is available at NSW Health website:  http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/beattheheat/Pages/default.aspx

Medical Illness/Injury

For life-threatening emergencies seek urgent medical assistance from:

  • Triple zero (000) for Ambulance support

If you are unsure if you require emergency medical assistance phone:

  • Healthdirect Australia 1800 022 222 (toll free) to talk to a Registered Nurse


Mental Health

If you or someone you know is at immediate risk of suicide or harm:

  • Dial Triple zero (000) for Police support

For urgent referral for people experiencing anxiety, depression, suicidality, psychosis and other mental health issues, dial:

The Mental Health Line is a single number, state-wide 24-hour mental health telephone access service.

Anyone with a mental health issue can use the Mental Health Line to speak with a mental health professional and be directed to the right care for them.

Carers, other health professionals and emergency service workers can also use the Mental Health Line for advice about a person’s clinical symptoms, the urgency of the need for care and local treatment options.

For assistance with Drug and Alcohol or and Sexual Assault related issues, please dial:

  • 1800 677 114 or  1800 809 423

Non urgent Mental Health information or counselling can also be sought from:

  • NSW Rural Mental Health Support Line 1800 201 123 (support and referral)
  • Lifeline 13 11 14 (confidential telephone counselling)
  • MensLine Australia 1300 789 978 (confidential telephone counselling for men)
  • Kids Helpline 1800 551 800 (telephone counselling)
  • Beyondblue 1300  224 636 (information and referral line)



Public Health

For urgent health support during a disaster response phone:

  • Public Health Unit  1300 066 055
  • NSW State Emergency Service 132 500 for natural disaster support
  • NSW Rural Fire Service 1800 679 737


More emergency contact details are available on:

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