1st August, 2014 by Lauren Eads
A hospital in France is to open a wine bar for its terminally ill patients to allow patients to “enjoy” their final days.
Terminally ill patients at the Clermont-Ferrand hospital in central France will soon be able to attend “medically supervised wine tasting sessions” and invite friends and family into the hospital for a drink, according to reports by The Telegraph.
The bar, which has already been approved by authorities and is supported by patients, is set to open in September in the hospital’s Palliative Care Centre.
In justifying the move Dr Virginie Guastella, head of the unit who first proposed the idea, said hospitals should not deprive people reaching the end of their lives of “the traditional flavours” of France.
“A situation can be palliative for several weeks or even several months and it’s because life is so precious and real until the end that we decided to cultivate all that is fine and good,” Dr Guastella told The Local.
“It’s a way of rethinking the care of others, taking into account their feelings and emotions that make them a human being.”
The bar will stock a range of wines, Champagne and whisky, with the hospital also accepting donations from local people.
If successful, it’s hoped the idea could take off at other hospitals in France.
There are others in the medical profession who believe in the power of wine.
UK doctor William McCrea has been prescribing wine to his heart disease patients for the last 10 years, delivering 125ml measures of red to the beds of patients at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon where he works.
Earlier this month the French government scrapped a long held law which prevented employers from banning employees from drinking beer, wine and cider at work, with employers are now able to decide whether to impose a ban on staff or not.