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Country profiles





The sources used to compile the health and adaptation information for country profiles vary across countries. For EU Member States, information is based on their official adaptation reporting: 2021 adaptation reporting under the Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union and Climate Action (see EU Adaptation ReportingClimate-ADAPT Country Profiles) and 2019 adaptation reporting under the EU Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Mechanism Regulation. These two reporting mechanisms are together referred to here as “EU official reporting on adaptation”. Note: The relevant information has been copied from the EU official reporting on adaptation (submitted until July 21, 2021), without further elaborating the contents of the text. Some information, valid at the time of reporting, may no longer be valid today. Any necessary additions to the text are clearly highlighted. 

In addition, information collated in the EEA’s analysis of Climate change and health: the national policy review in Europe (2021), the Adaptation preparedness scoreboard country fiches (2018) and the WHO study on Public health and climate change adaptation policies in the European Union (2018) are presented. Note: Some information, valid at the time of publication, may no longer be valid today. Any necessary additions to the text are clearly highlighted. 

Information sources for non-EU member countries of the EEA are more limited. 

Information from EEA report. Climate change and health: the national policy overview in Europe (2022)

National policies on climate change adaptation and national health strategies were analysed to identify the coverage of climate-related impacts on health (physical, mental, and social) and the types of interventions addressing them. The report provides a European overview, while the geographical coverage of various aspects of national policies across Europe can be visualized using the map viewer. The results for Sweden are summarised here.

Policy documents reviewed:

National strategy for climate adaptation (2018)

The Public Health Agency's goals and action plan for climate adaptation 2021–2024 

Health impacts of climate change in Sweden – a risk and vulnerability analysis (2021)

Aspects covered in the reviewed policy document:

Information from EU official reporting on adaptation. GovReg reporting (2021), MMR reporting (2019)

In 2018, the Swedish Government adopted a National Adaptation Strategy (NAS). The NAS outlines mechanisms for coordination, monitoring, evaluation and review of adaptation to climate change. As the work on adaptation cuts across many disciplines, it is to a large extent guided by existing legislation, frameworks and targets - both national and international. Examples include the work on Agenda 2030 and the Swedish Environmental Quality Objectives. Adaptation action plans have been developed to underpin the NAS with specific action. The regional government offices have adopted 21 regional action plans covering the whole of Sweden, with nearly 800 proposed actions. The main actions proposed in the plans concern inter alia resilience for heatwaves and healthcare.

Several national authorities in Sweden have already developed action plans for the sectors that fall under their responsibility, like for human health. The administrative regions in Sweden are responsible for health and medical care, public transport and regional development, but do not have any specific adaptation assignments. At the local level, the municipalities have a very important role to play in adaptation. They are responsible for physical planning and infrastructure for water, the emergency services, health and social care, schools and childcare. The Planning and Building Act provides legislative guidance.

Information from Adaptation preparedness scoreboard. Country fiches (2018)

For example, the Public Health Agency has been tasked to monitor the health situation among the population, including factors related to climate change.

The County Administrative Board (CABs) have developed several guides, for example guidance on “Health Effects of Climate Change – risks and actions in Stockholm County”, which outlines appropriate human health-related actions based on climate scenarios for the region until 2100.

Information from WHO publication. Public health and climate change adaptation policies in the European Union (2018)

The Public Health Agency produced an action plan on climate change adaptation called “Public health in a changing climate” in 2017. The plan is limited to the mandate of the Agency and does not yet include tasks of other stakeholders.

Sweden has established a contingency plan at the highest political level to address high temperatures and a strategy to alert homes with special care/special housing units to such weather prognoses. In May 2017, a guideline was published for composing heatwave response plans, consisting of information and training materials with recommendations for healthcare workers and groups at risk during heatwaves.

The Public Health Agency monitors the most important infectious diseases in the country at individual and geographical levels. The Agency has analysed incidence with weather and climatic data several times. Investigations are carried out if signals of changes in disease epidemiology are detected. If needed, the investigations can include climate-related reasons for change.

The National Veterinary Institute creates forecasts through vector monitoring and modelling to achieve early detection and advance warning of outbreaks of vector-borne diseases.

WHO case studies from publication. Public health and climate change adaptation policies in the European Union (2018)

Guideline for heat-health action plans

In 2017, the Public Health Agency of Sweden published a guideline to support municipalities, county councils, regions and private healthcare providers in developing action plans for heatwaves. The guideline highlights important aspects to consider when designing action plans to prevent and manage the adverse health effects of heatwaves on the population, in connection with meteorological early warnings. In support of this work, the Public Health Agency developed material to support healthcare providers in their efforts to develop action plans and reduce the health risks associated with heatwaves in the form of films, brochures, advice to various healthcare professionals and a web-based training course.

Portal for Climate Change Adaptation

The Swedish Portal for Climate Change Adaptation is a multiannual collaboration between agencies within the Governmental Agency Network, consisting of 18 agencies at the national level and the county administrative boards. The Network also collaborates with the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions. To analyse climate change-related consequences and vulnerabilities and to develop adaptation, cooperation is needed between the health and other sectors and functions of society, such as agriculture and livestock farming, veterinary medicine, the water and sewerage sector, the construction sector, urban planning, the transport sector and the energy sector. The Network aims to strengthen the capacity of participating government agencies and society by working towards improvement of frameworks and steering instruments.

Resources in the Observatory catalogue on Sweden