The innovation grants will specifically target support to developing country organisations and will be open to partnerships between international and local organisations, including churches and faith-based organisations.

Weather: Hot Weather

Question

Asked by The Earl of Courtown

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is being done to ensure that the most vulnerable people are getting the help they need in the recent hot weather.[HL1699]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): The Heatwave Plan is an important part of overall emergency planning and has been jointly agreed by the Department, NHS England, Public Health England and other stakeholders. It was published by Public Health England in May 2013 and aims to raise awareness of the dangers of severe heat and to describe actions to reduce harm, to be taken by individuals and services such as the National Health Service, social care and local government. The plan is a guide to good practice, but it is up to local areas to adapt and incorporate action into local plans.

The NHS in England has plans in place to ensure that vulnerable adults and children receive the care that they need in the event of a heat wave. The NHS works closely with statutory and non-statutory agencies in planning and responding to the need of individuals to ensure that vulnerable groups receive the care that is appropriate to them in an extreme of temperature.

Public Health England (PHE) issued public health messaging through social media and conventional media at national, regional and local levels. Specifically, these messages have focused on the effects of heat on those less able to cope: older people, young children and babies and those with serious illnesses. Specific messages include staying cool, drinking cool fluids and looking out for others. Advice on how to stay cool at home and advice for care home managers and staff have been shared as well as recommending never leaving anyone in a closed, parked vehicle, especially infants, young children or animals.

The Department for Communities and Local Government’s resilience and emergencies team has a key role in supporting local resilience forums in the work they undertake to identify risks and agree plans to mitigate those risks at a local level. Drawing on the national Heatwave Plan, Local Resilience Forums help to ensure that:

—the distribution of Heat-Health Watch Alerts reaches those that need to take action; —a multi-agency response to heat waves is developed, working with key stakeholders including local authority health and social care services and the voluntary sector; and—actions are taken (appropriate to local needs) in light of the Heatwave Alert messages to ensure that the needs of vulnerable people are met.