04 August 2014

French hospital will incorporate a wine bar

A hospital in south-central France has come up with an unconventional, not to mention extremely French, idea to try to improve the lives of terminally ill patients. It is to open a wine bar that will offer "medically supervised" wine tasting. The bar, which will open in September, will be located at the palliative care centre at the CHU Clermont-Ferrand hospital in Puy-de-Dôme, will be open to patients, their friends and relatives. 
More information at The Local, via Nothing to do with Arbroath.

I remember forty years ago when I lived in Texas several local hospitals, including the VA, had "medicinal alcohol" (gin, vodka, etc) in their formularies.  Any physician could prescribe it for any patient, but it was primarily prescribed to prevent alcoholics from going into withdrawal during a hospitalization (it's surprising how many sweet elderly ladies start getting agitated after several days of forced abstinence during an unexpected hospitalization).  

Medicinal alcohol was also an effective reward that might convince a patient wanting to leave against medical advice to stay another day or two.  The French venture seems to offer the alcohol in the social setting of a bar, which would confer additional advantages, especially to the terminally ill.  One wonders whether eventually medicinal marijuana will be similarly mainstreamed in hospital settings.


  1. I believe you can still get a Brompton cocktail in Britain. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brompton_cocktail

  2. At CHOMP (Comm. Hospital of Monterey Peninsula), I remember my grandma used to get a nice small bottle of red wine with her dinner served by the hospital. That was in the 1990's. Not sure if is the same. I avoid hospitals whenever I can.


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