At Clinique Saint Roch, a 50-bed multi-purpose facility located near Toulouse in southwestern France, where the average age of patients exceeds 80 years, a heat wave plan is activated as soon as the thermometer goes up!
“We created two specific spots only to keep patients hydrated continuously throughout the day under the supervision of the care team,” says Christine Marty, Assistant Director. These spots are created from the beginning of the heat wave alert and held until the end of the alert.
“The hydrating teams are informed of the clinical data essential to the accomplishment of their missions (diabetic patients, swallowing disorders, patients requiring assistance with hydration, etc.). The distribution trolley is organized according to: syrup with sugar and no sugar, articulated straw, fresh water and temperate water. These hydrating professionals also receive behavioral instructions specific to each patient such as the respect of tastes, the management of the refusal, the quantification of the number of glasses drank by each patient, reporting difficulties, etc. Several reports are made between hydrating professionals and care teams at different times of the day to stay updated on the health conditions of the patients.”
In addition to these measures, common sense actions are repeated such as ventilation of the rooms by opening the windows at night until the early morning, the opening of the doors to the air-conditioned common areas, the ventilation of all the rooms, and the accompaniment of the patients, several times a day, to the air-conditioned common parts. Finally, special attention is paid to the preparation of meals rich in hydration.
At national level
Ségolène Benhamou, President of FHP-MCO
Set up since 2004, following the fatal summer of 2003 in France, the « Plan canicule » (heat wave plan) is intended to inform and set up actions to protect people at risk in the event of hot weather. Activated every year between June 1st and August 31st, it has four levels.
“Our health facilities are obviously on the alert. These are places of care but also of information of the public.Our professionals significantly contribute to the ministerial awareness campaign on the good gestures to be adopted during times of high heat, relaying it to patients and visitors. We are familiar with this mission at the service of the population: health education, personalized care, emergency care in emergency services or in the many on-site consultation centers of our health facilities. Private hospitalization is a front-line actor, present in the territories, complementary to territorial medicine and public hospitals. In these periods of heat wave, the population and health authorities can count on clinics and private hospitals,” says Ségolène Benhamou, President of FHP-MCO.