Thursday, 30 August 2007

Medical Coverage for Karatedo

Every time I am asked to assist in medical coverage of a martial event, I would ask for the assistance of hospital teams to ensure that the whole mechanism for emergency care is activated. During the 8th AKF, the organisers had the commitment of the Negeri Sembilan Health Department to ensure that the medical services offered during the 3 day competition was adequate and did not endanger the participants' lives.

The most important factors responsible for keeping the injury risks low were:-
1. The high standards of referreeing
2. The high fitness and skill levels of participants
3. Adequate rehydration in between bouts

Despite having a team for each 'tatami', we were busy with minor lacerations, bruises, contusions, muscle strains and mild joint sprains. We only had one participant who injured her neck, was immobilised using the hard cervical collar and long spinal board and transferred safely to the hospital. Two participants had mild concussion and were sent to hospital for further evaluation and observation for 24 hours. We only had to stitch up a bad laceration on an official who had fallen before the second day's competition. The Atomated External Defibrillator (AED) was available on stand-by in the event of patient collapse due to cardiac arrhythmias.

This is definitely a competition involving the whole team of referrees (rules and regulations), officials (traffic), doctors and paramedics, ambulance driver, registar-on-call and surgeon-on-call (immediate hospital care).

We still need qualified volunteers to provide a safer medical coverage during such sports events. You may contact me at

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