Considerations for Road Race Medical Staff
As road races are typically warm weather events, runners are at risk for heat-related illnesses, including exertional heat stroke. On-site medical care provides timely treatment to afflicted runners as well as help to prevent overwhelming community emergency medical services. This chapter will discuss the organization of a medical team including staffing needs based on the event’s number of participants and environmental conditions, specific protocols and procedures used to treat casualties, how adverse conditions may alter these plans, and the supplies needed for on-site health care at mass participation events. Using the Falmouth Road Race as a model, this chapter will serve as a guide for road race medical staff to plan for future events or to enhance existing medical care plans. It will also discuss how pre-race runner education may decrease casualties at large-scale events, an underutilized resource to optimize runners’ safety as a part of the medical care plan.
KeywordsRoad race medicine Exertional heat stroke Heat-related illness On-site medical care Mass participation event Runner education
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