A proposed ordinance to lower temperatures faces criticism

A proposed decree by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MIT), which would require schools, hospitals, and households to lower their temperatures by up to six degrees Celsius compared to the current situation due to the energy crisis, has raised eyebrows.

It has been criticized, for example, by operators of homes for the elderly, who say the proposed temperatures are too low for the elderly. Representatives of homeowners are also critical. The Ministry defends itself by saying that it consulted health professionals.

The draft decree reduces the temperature in the bathrooms in these facilities from 24 to 20 degrees. The same temperature should also be used in the rooms.

“It is not acceptable for seniors to spend one hundred percent of their time in rooms with 20 degrees or less. It is life-threatening to bathe frail seniors in a room heated to only 20 degrees Celsius, where they quickly catch a cold,” said Daniela Luskova, vice president of the Association of Providers of Social Services (APSS). The association brings together residential facilities for the elderly and disabled.

Who will control it?

The first comments have already been received in the comment procedure, which will run until August 19. For example, the Union of Employers’ Associations of the Czech Republic, in line with the APSS, states that social service facilities predominantly care for people with an average age of 86 years, with a high degree of dependence on the care of another person. It calls for the status quo to be maintained.

“Social service facilities heat rooms during the heating season to ensure the thermal comfort of older people, which in any case exceeds 20 °C in rooms and common areas and 24 °C in bathrooms,” the comment states.

To the decree, the Civic Association of Homeowners in the Czech Republic (OSMD) stated that it is not clear how landlords should verify the temperature; besides, tenants have the right to undisturbed use of the apartment.