Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) is reporting the first heat-related death in Dallas County in 2016. The cause of death was confirmed by the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office. For medical confidentiality and personal privacy reasons, DCHHS does not provide additional identifying information.
DCHHS is urging residents to take precaution during the heat.
“Summer heat in North Texas can be dangerous,” said DCHHS Director Zachary Thompson. “Citizens should be mindful of the risks associated with high temperatures and take precautions to avoid potentially life-threatening situations for themselves and their loved ones.”
DCHHS conducts syndromic surveillance with hospital emergency rooms and the county medical examiner to monitor and track cases of heat-related illness and death in Dallas County. Here are the numbers from the last three years:
3 deaths and 348 total heat-related illness cases
0 deaths and 236 total heat-related illness cases
2 deaths and 297 total heat-related illness cases
“Heat deaths are preventable,” said Dr. Christopher Perkins, DCHHS medical director/health authority. “There are actions you can take to decrease your risk of heat-related problems, such as staying in a cool place, decreasing physical activity and staying well-hydrated.”
Health officials ask citizens to follow precautions to stay safe in the heat:
For more information on heat safety, visit: http://www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/heatillness.html.