By John Frierson
A diverse sort of practice was taking place inside the Payne Indoor Athletic Facility on Thursday. Rather of football players operating routes or operating on their blocking approach, paramedics had been education to get far better at dealing with sports-connected emergency healthcare conditions.
An all-day occasion place on by UGA Sports Medicine and the Regional Trauma Advisory Committee of the Georgia Trauma Commission, the 2023 RTAC Sports Medicine Conference featured 165 attendees and ten diverse speakers. Front and center all through, from delivering the opening remarks to speaking on subjects as wide-ranging as treating heatstroke and the management of spine injuries, was Ron Courson, Executive Associate Athletic Director and Georgia’s Director of Sports Medicine.
Courson stated Area ten of the RTAC asked him and longtime emergency healthcare technician (EMT) Glenn Henry, the former emergency healthcare solutions (EMS) system chair at Athens Technical College, to place collectively a education system for paramedics.
“A lot of EMTs and paramedics cover Friday evening football games, and they have excellent education in emergency medicine, but occasionally they do not have as substantially knowledge in sports medicine,” Courson stated.
Along with lectures from a lot of physicians, athletic trainers and other healthcare specialists, the course integrated on-field labs in the course of which the attendees could get hands-on education in dealing with precise sports injuries and emergency conditions.
Courson, who is also an EMT and has had to deal with all manner of injured athletes in his profession, like these with neck and spinal injuries, stated that it is crucial that paramedics know how to most effective to help athletes with potentially key injuries, especially in football.
“Paramedics and EMTs might have excellent knowledge in trauma conditions and spine-boarding (placing the injured on back boards), but they might not have that substantially education in how to take football shoulder pads off. Or how take a helmet off in a spine emergency,” he stated. “Not all helmets are the similar, and not all pads are the similar, so you have to know the diverse gear and know the diverse nuances of how to take it off safely.”
One more element to the education involved dealing with these suffering from heatstroke, a thing that comes up across the nation every single summer season, especially in the course of preseason practices at all levels of football.
“Heatstroke is a diverse issue. With EMS, you ordinarily want to get them to the hospital as fast as you can. But heatstroke is a diverse issue, exactly where you want to cool the particular person and then transport them,” Courson stated. “That is the good issue about the lab, you can have the lecture but then you can also demonstrate the most effective way to do items.”
A important element to paramedics and EMTs operating with sports medicine employees and athletic trainers in emergency conditions, Courson stated, is communication.
“I’ve been an EMT for 35 years, so it is simpler for me to speak to an EMT mainly because I am a single and I know their language,” he stated. “The far more I can cross-train my employees, and my purpose is to have all of my employees be athletic trainers and emergency healthcare technicians the far more we can cross-train there, it tends to make us far better, but it also aids with the data exchange.”
Ten years ago, Courson and his employees began what they referred to as “the healthcare timeout” — it is a practice that has been picked up across the nation, he stated, and in the NFL. Prior to each competitors in each sport, Georgia’s sports medicine employees get collectively with the healthcare employees for the opposing group, along with the paramedics operating the game, to have a ten-minute meeting to go over every single person’s part and exactly where they will be positioned, exactly where the gear is positioned, and the place of the nearest hospital.
“Sports medicine teams are just like a (sports) group, you have to practice,” Courson stated. “Everyone has a part. And the far more you get athletic trainers and EMTs and paramedics and nurses collectively to speak about roles and responsibilities, it in the end aids the individuals.”
Assistant Sports Communications Director John Frierson is the employees writer for the UGA Athletic Association and curator of the ITA Men’s Tennis Hall of Fame. You can come across his function at: Frierson Files. He’s also on Twitter: @FriersonFiles and @ITAHallofFame.