UKZN Emergency Medicine Team Provides Care at Comrades Marathon
Members of the UKZN Division of Emergency Medicine helped provide medical care at the Comrades Marathon medical tent at the finish of the race at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.
The Division also hosted members of the visiting Wits University Emergency Medicine team as well as medical officers from KwaZulu-Natal hospitals, who all offered their services on a voluntary basis.
Said Head of Emergency Medicine at UKZN Dr Sharadh Garach: ‘There are very few ultramarathons of this size, and the opportunity to provide acute and emergency care at this level creates an amazing learning opportunity for the team, and a chance to give back to the community. With over 12 000 runners completing the event dubbed the “Ultimate Human Race”, the medical tent utilised a rapid triage system to categorise unwell runners into treatment categories, ranging from basic wound care to ICU level heat stroke stabilisation.’
Over 300 runners were treated by the team in a 140-bed field hospital, with about 80% of those in need of care arriving during the last two hours of the race.
The UKZN team said they were grateful for the support they received from the Comrades Association, race officials, the race medical director, nurses, paramedics and Emergency Medicine Services (EMS) personnel.
Words: Lihle Sosibo