Heat stress: vulnerability, health impacts, and coping strategies in rural communities in the semi-arid region of Maharashtra, India

Increasing temperatures are likely to impact human health. An increase in severe heat wave days and heat mortalities has been observed in India over the past few decades. A report by National Disaster Management Authority states that about 22,562 heat related deaths were reported between the periods 1992 to 2015. A body of literature is available on heat stress in urban areas and for few occupational settings. However, there is little evidence on the heat experience, impact of heat exposure, and adaptation measures to heat stress in the rural context. In this context, the study examines vulnerability of rural communities to heat stress in the semi- arid villages in Maharashtra state in India.