Medical volunteers prepare for the arrival of Arctic Winter Game Athletes
Photo By Robert Bell
Arctic Winter Games athletes can rest comfortably knowing that a team of well-trained medical professionals will be on-hand around the clock in case they fall victim to an accident or illness.
“Starting yesterday, we’ve had a group of volunteers around the clock 24 hours a day,” said Rebecca Byerley, Medical Committee Co-Chair. “That means we have to have someone available at any time, any hour during the day, and all night,” said Byerley. A registered or licensed medical professional will assess ill or injured athletes.
In addition to basic First-Aid, athletes will receive physical therapy. “Any taping of joints will be handled by coaches,” said Byerley.
At the venues, EMTs or paramedics will attend to any athlete who gets injured; from there they will be transported to their accommodations, the Polyclinic at Soldotna High School or the hospital. There will be at least two medical personnel at each venue assisted by security personnel. The venues will be staffed not only during competition, but during practices as well. Equipment on hand will include fifty-four gallon totes containing supplies, as well as an AED for every venue, including the Polyclinic.
The initial contact for athletes visiting the Polyclinic is Michelle Gage who is in charge of the Data Entry volunteers at the Polyclinic. Once signed in, athletes will be attended to by a nurse, therapist or physician. The majority of the Polyclinic patients are expected after an event has ended and muscles begin to ache.
“Individuals who are coming in for specific screening tests, muscle problems, aches, pains, sprains, and strains can be treated there, said Byerley. “Hopefully treatment can end at the Polyclinic.”
The Arctic Winter Games medical volunteers gathered at Soldotna Middle School March 3 for their security badges, deployment instructions and schedules during the week of the games. Schedules and contact information is posted at the venues and in athlete accommodations.
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