ED doctor: Be on guard during extreme heat

An excessive heat warning is in effect for northwest Washington through the evening of Friday, July 29. Dr. Steve Mitchell, medical director of Harborview Medical Center’s Emergency Department, warns that the stretch of heat can turn dangerous quickly.

“We want everybody to be aware, to be on guard, and to make sure you have a plan for how to get out of the heat. Make sure you have a plan for staying hydrated,” said Mitchell. “If you live by yourself, have people check on you.”

Mitchell says heat-related illnesses can arise suddenly.  Initial warning signs include:

  • Feeling thirsty
  • Inability to think clearly
  • Chest pain
  • Trouble breathing

“We are definitely set up and doing all we can to make sure we are optimally prepared to meet whatever challenge may be coming our way,” said Mitchell of Harborview Medical Center.

Download broadcast-ready soundbites on health cautions and care during hot weather, along with Mitchell’s reflection on the record-breaking 2021 heat wave.

UW Medicine