The third age observatory on Sunday has called for further checks at care homes and for air conditioning to be installed in their homes, following a heatwave that caused some elderly to die from heatstroke.

The non-government organisation (NGO) also called for the creation of a deputy ministry that would explicitly deal with the issues of the elderly.

According to statements made by the head of the group to Reporter, Demos Antoniou the state should be concerned.

“The elderly are faced with various health problems, making heatstroke an aggregator, especially when they are facing chronic issues and is devastating to the health of the elderly. In addition, many older people do not feel warm and do not have the same sensation as younger people. So, there are older people who will get heat stroke and not realise it,” he explained about the recent heat wave.

Commenting further, he said the observatory is going to send a letter to the Deputy Ministry of Welfare, as well as to the Ministry of Energy, but also to the EAC, raising as a main issue the low-earning pensioners and those with financial problems, to receive discounts during the summer, so that they can live in normal conditions.

In addition, he said the observatory has been informed of a court decision in Switzerland, in which elderly women who had suffered heat stroke had taken legal action against the Swiss state for not doing its utmost to protect them from climate change and heat stroke, resulting in them winning the lawsuit.

“So, it’s a very important milestone, because the observatory will try to identify on what basis this lawsuit has been won, with the aim of pushing the state to take action for those who are victims of heatstroke. We cannot, in the year 2024, have people dying of heatstroke or having serious problems because the state is unable to protect them,” said Antoniou.

Two people died last week of heatstroke, while three were hospitalised with the condition.