By Bernard S. Little
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center held a series
of dress rehearsals to prepare staff for providing medical support at the 34th
Army Ten-Miler, which course will take runners through Arlington, Virginia and
Washington, D.C. Oct. 7.
After the Philadelphia Broad Street Run, the Army Ten-Miler
is the second largest 10-mile race in the United States, according to race officials.
The race annually draws tens of thousands of runners from around the world for
the run, which begins and ends at the Pentagon[OMACW1] .
Staff members from Walter Reed Bethesda have traditionally
provided medical support for the event, caring for runners challenged in past years
by heat, musculoskeletal and dermatological injuries and other medically-related
problems from participating in the run.
This year, Walter Reed Bethesda has been tasked to provide a
minimum of 59 medical staff members, according Army Maj. Angela Howell, a nurse
coordinating the efforts of medical center taskers for the race and WRNMMC’s
nurse informatics officer. “We have 150 tasked and volunteers who will support
the tasker for this year’s 34th Army Ten-Miler,” she added.
During dress rehearsals for the event, WRNMMC staff members
practiced setting up and using litters and wheelchairs, radio communications
and trauma kits including ice bags, splinting material and wound dressing
equipment. WRNMMC staff members will staff a number of first aid stations along
the race course, and medical tents at the event will be equipped with cots,
intravenous (IV) fluids, and resuscitation devices including defibrillators,
oxygen, suction and adult- and pediatric-sized instruments and medications. WRNMMC
staff members supporting the event include physicians, nurses, corpsmen, medics
and other medical and administrative technicians.
During last year’s Army Ten-Miler, more than 260 patients
were treated by University Services University of the Health Sciences (USU) faculty,
medical students, and National Capital Consortium Primary Care Sports Medicine
fellows, along with staff from several National Capital Region military
treatment facilities, in four medical tents on race day, according to Sharon
Holland, USU external affairs officer. “Thirty-four patients were transported
to area hospitals by ambulance. Thirty runners were treated for Exertional Heat
Stroke (EHS) in one of four ice baths running almost continuously for much of
the race. More than 1,500 pounds of ice was used to provide life-saving
treatment for runners with EHS.