BY JOEL M. SY EGCO SENIOR REPORTER
TO avoid the chances of being hit by heat stroke, Malacanang on Monday advised the public to lessen their intake of tea, coffee, soda and alcohol and to just drink plenty of water to beat the sizzling summer heat.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte, in a press briefing, said the government through the Health department has issued an advisory on its website on how to spend the Holy Week without having to worry about the searing heat that could turn deadly for the unprepared.
“These will be helpful to our countrymen who are going out of town for the weekend. We also recommend reference to the advisory on heat stroke as we all cope with the summer heat,” she said.
Besides less intake of fluids other than water, excursionists and vacationers are also told to limit the amount of time they spend outdoors; wear a wide-brimmed hat and long-sleeved clothing outdoors; and schedule strenuous activities for the beginning or end of the day when the temperature is cooler.
“The risk of heat stroke raises in hot and humid weather coupled with vigorous exercise, dehydration, too much direct exposure to the sun,” the advisory said.
Individuals suffering from this condition show the following signs: exhaustion, intense thirst, dehydration, weakness or discomfort, dizziness or fainting, anxiety, and headache.
“Heat stroke is the most severe form of heat illness wherein the body overheats and can’t cool down by sweating because of dehydration… A person is suffering from heat stroke if the core body temperature is 40°C or more; skin is hot and dry; rapid heartbeat; convulsion; delirium; and loss of consciousness or coma,” it was said.
In case of a heat stroke, those accompanying the victim should move the person to a shady spot or indoors and have him or her lie down with the legs elevated.
“If still conscious, have them sip cool water. Remove clothing, apply cool water to the skin and fan them. Apply ice packs to the armpits, wrists, ankles, and groin. Bring to a hospital immediately,” the advisory further said.
Meanwhile, Valte said security preparations for the long vacation are already set following Monday’s command conference between President Benigno Aquino 3rd and top officials of the Philippine National Police.
“The President began the week with the PNP Command Conference held in Camp Crame this morning, among others, to ensure that the Holy Week holidays are orderly and peaceful,” said Valte.
“Apart from the other engagements in the President’s schedule, he will also spend the week monitoring the preparations and actions of concerned government agencies in light of the upcoming holidays,” she added.
She said the official Gazette presents a compilation of emergency hotlines that the public may use in case of emergency, including a Summary of the Rights of Air Passengers for those travelling by airplane.
“We wish our fellow Filipinos a safe and meaningful Holy Week,” the Palace official stressed.