Cold Weather Plan

Developed by: Public Health England

The Cold Weather Plan for England provides the latest advice from Public Health England on how to plan and prepare for extreme winter weather. The guidance covers how to avoid negative impacts, particularly on those who are most vulnerable to cold weather, for example as a result of pre-existing health conditions or due to social isolation.

This is, in part, to address the Public Health Outcomes Framework (2012) which includes indicators on excess winter deaths and fuel poverty.

The plan is supported by a suite of resources:

  • An ‘Equality Analysis’ details groups of people or particular health conditions which may exacerbate the effects of cold weather, which provides the evidence drawn upon.
  • Action cards for: commissioners and local authorities; providers; frontline staff; GPs and practice staff; the voluntary and community sector; and individuals. Each card details the actions that need to be taken across five different levels, from Level 0 (Long term planning) to Level 4 alerts, which require an emergency response.

Taken together, all of these resources are vital in ensuring that the most socially vulnerable are identified and provisions made to assist them in the event of extremely cold weather. The resources also include documents on how to make the case for diverting resources towards cold weather planning.

A further update has been provided for 2014. Access the plan here.