Details about the impact of extreme cold on cardiovascular mortality are little known in the countries with warm winters like Taiwan. This study aimed to examine the ecological associations between various social determinants and cardiovascular mortality after cold surges in Taiwan with a spatial perspective focusing on spatial non-stationarity. The mortality rates at township level in Taiwan were observed from 1997 to 2003. Five social determinants (social disadvantage, lack of economic opportunity, stability, sensitive group, and rurality) were created with the 2000 Taiwan Census data. We analyzed the data using Geographically Weighted Poisson Regression. On average, an immediate increase in cardiovascular mortality was found right after cold surges. All of the five determinants were found to have spatial non-stationary effects on the cardiovascular mortality rates after cold surges. This finding provided an empirical basis for developing public health programs with local emphases on the impacts of extreme cold.
Science of The Total Environment 408(9), pp.2042–2049