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MedStar poised to treat heat-related illnesses during upcoming temperature spike

Posted June 7, 2019

inside of MedStar ambulance
MedStar is updating its fleet with ambulances designed with the Texas heat in mind. The ambulances have three air conditioners — one for the cab and two for the patient/crew compartment.

In May, MedStar crews treated 25 patients with heat-related conditions, and 12 of those patients were transported to area hospitals.

With the season’s highest temperatures of the year arriving this week, it’s a good time to remember that prolonged or intense exposure to high temperatures can cause heat-related illnesses such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke.

Heat exhaustion occurs when the body loses large amounts of water and salt through excessive sweating, particularly through hard physical labor or exercise. This loss of essential fluids can disturb circulation and interfere with brain function. Symptoms of heat exhaustion may include muscle cramps, paleness, sweating, nausea and vomiting. Children and the elderly are especially susceptible.

Heatstroke is a life-threatening problem that occurs when the body suffers from long, intense exposure to heat and loses its ability to cool itself. Some of the most common signs of heatstroke include confusion, vomiting, alteration in sweating, hot and flushed skin, rapid heart rate, decreased sweating, shortness of breath, decreased urination, increased body temperature (104-106 degrees Fahrenheit) or, potentially, convulsions.

Heatstroke is a medical emergency. If you or someone you know starts experiencing any of the symptoms above, immediately call 911.

While heatstroke and heat exhaustion are common this time of year, they can be easily prevented:

  • Hydrate. Drink plenty of water during the day, especially if you are engaged in any strenuous activity. Sports drinks are a good choice if you’re exercising or working in hot conditions, but water is a good way to hydrate as well.

  • Ventilate. Stay in a place where there is plenty of air circulating to keep your body cool. If you are indoors and don’t have access to air conditioning, open windows and use a fan.

  • Cover up. Wear light-colored and loose-fitting clothing to avoid absorbing the sun’s light and trapping heat. Wear a hat to shield yourself from the sun, but once you feel yourself getting warm, remove any items covering your head that can trap heat close to your body.

  • Limit activity. Heatstroke can occur in less than an hour when you are participating in strenuous activity on a hot day. If you feel yourself getting hot or light-headed, stop your activity and rest in a cool place out of the sun. Be sure to drink water or a sports drink before, during and after any strenuous activity.

  • Check on loved ones. The elderly are especially vulnerable to heat-related emergencies. Many elderly residents are not aware of how hot it may get in their residence. Call on older friends and family members regularly to assure they are doing OK.

MedStar has a special response procedure when the heat index (some people call it the “real feel”) climbs to 105 degrees or higher. For patients outside in an unprotected area, the response priority is upgraded to limit the patient and responders from exposure to extreme heat.

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Last day to apply to the Fort Worth Business Plan Competition: June 17, 2019; James Guinn Entrepreneurial Campus, 1150 South Freeway, Suite 106.
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Urban Plan for Public Officials Workshop: 8:30 a.m. June 17, 2019; Meacham Airport, 3rd Floor Conference Room, 201 American Concourse.
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Collective Bargaining between the City of Fort Worth and the International Association of Fire Fighters, Local Union 440 - REVISED: noon June 17, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, City Hall, 200 Texas St.
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Commuter Rail Committee Work Session: 3:30 p.m. June 17, 2019; Intermodal Transportation Center, 2nd Floor Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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Planning, Operations, and Marketing Committee Working Session: 4 p.m. June 17, 2019; Fort Worth Central station, 2nd Floor Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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Finance and Audit Committee Working Session: 4:30 p.m. June 17, 2019; Fort Worth Central Station, 2nd Floor Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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Fort Worth Art Commission Special Called Meeting: 5 p.m. June 17, 2019; Fort Worth Community Arts Center, 1300 Gendy Street.
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Fort Worth Local Development Corporation: 2 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street .
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Canceled Central City Local Development Corporation: 2 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled AllianceAirport Authority, Inc.: 2 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Canceled Lone Star Local Development Corporation: 2 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. June 18, 2019; City Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Commercial Board of Adjustment Work Session: 9 a.m. June 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, City Hall, 200.
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Commercial Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 10 a.m. June 19, 2019; Council Chamber 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas St.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Work Session: 1 p.m. June 19, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, City Hall, 200 Texas St.
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Residential Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 2 p.m. June 19, 2019; City Council chamber 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas St.
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Breakfast at the BAC - The Two H's of Labor and Employment: 7:30 a.m. June 20, 2019; Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.
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Fort Worth Housing Solutions Board of Commissioners: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Fort Worth Affordability, Inc. Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Gateway Public Facility Corporation Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Chishol V Corporation Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWSH Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Sycamore Housing, Inc. Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWSH Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Stallion Point Public Facility Corporation Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Fair Park Public Facility Corporation Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Fair Oaks Public Facility Corporation Annual Meeting: 5 p.m. June 20, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th St.
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Stop Six Juneteenth : 5 p.m. June 21, 2019; MLK Jr. Community Center, 5565 Truman Drive.

16th Annual Fort Worth Housing Summit: 8:30 a.m. June 22, 2019; Tarrant County College - South Campus, 5301 Campus Drive.

Fort Worth Crud Cruiser Event: 9 a.m. June 22, 2019; Riverside Community Center, 3700 E Belknap St Fort Worth Texas, 76111.

Karate Tournament at North Tri-Ethnic Community Center: 9 a.m. June 22, 2019; North Tri-Ethnic Community Center, 2950 Roosevelt Ave.

Fort Worth Crud Cruiser Event: noon June 22, 2019; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave Fort Worth Texas, 76104.

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