Medical resources deployed for the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar

Guillaume Alinier, Naven Pullian, Nicol van Dyk, David Rehn, Damon Tilley, Nikki Jeanguyot, Louis Holtzhausen, Maria-Carmen Adamuz, Ramy Gharib, Shaneer Shamso, Liesel Geertsema, Celeste Geertsema, Raouf Rekik, Stephen Targett, Emin Ergen, Brendon Morris*, Juan-Manuel Alonso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review

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Background: International sporting events such as the World Athletics (WA) competition require proper medical coverage to ensure the wellbeing of athletes, support teams, and spectators 1 . Several factors may have an impact on people's requirements for medical attention such as the climate, altitude, and intensity of the sporting competition on the athletes 2,3 . The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) held its 2019 competition in Doha, Qatar, and this study reports on the medical resources deployed to cover the event based on risk assessment. Case presentation: Although the competition was held for 10 days across two venues. The medical cover started 3 days earlier and also encompassed warm-up/training venues and official hotels (Table 1). It involved multiple healthcare organizations providing equipment, manpower, medical tents/clinics, and vehicles in case of transportation to the hospital was required. Results: Resources were allocated to various locations based on the risk assessment (Table 1) and depending on the number of people competing, training, or attending, and the size of the venue. Environmental factors were accounted for with the provision of cold-water immersion recovery baths at multiple locations and ample manpower with rostering of clinical staff from various relevant healthcare professions (Table 2). All resources were deployed on a rotational shift basis in the official locations well ahead of the start of each event until an hour or two after the completion of the event. Conclusion: Proper planning, communication, and collaboration among organizers, hosts, medical services providers, and other authorities play a vital role in the safety of athletes, support team members, and spectators. Such large events impose huge strain on the resources which can impact aspects of daily healthcare delivery to the rest of the community and hence need to be carefully considered. It is worth noting that the medical coverage provided was not overwhelmed by patient demand, hence; the medical coverage was appropriate.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Emergency Medicine, Trauma and Acute Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes


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