Monday, August 17, 2009

Singapore's F1 medical team capable of handling accidents on circuit

Singapore's medical team for the SingTel Formula 1 Grand Prix said on Saturday it is able to cope with freak accidents like the one that put Ferrari driver Felipe Massa out of action recently. Massa suffered life-threatening skull injuries after a suspension spring from another F1 car hit his helmet at the Hungarian circuit on July 25.
In Singapore, the F1 medical team said it has specialists, neurosurgeons and trauma experts to handle such cases. It has been rehearsing all possible scenarios and is well prepared. Dr Kelvin Low, chief medical officer, SingTel F1 Grand Prix, said: "We're conducting a lot of training to get the team to rehearse together and basically, the team has been quite well-trained so far.
"We ran through scenarios that would happen in pit lane or in certain critical turns... coordinating how we secure the casualty, how we safely transport the casualty out into the medical facility in the fastest possible time." The team said there are currently about 150 volunteers trained in motorsport medicine in Singapore. More would be needed, especially with more motorsport events expected at the upcoming Changi Sports Hub, which will be ready in 2012. To increase the pool of medical volunteers, an inaugural Singapore Motorsport Medicine Symposium was organised on Saturday, attracting some 150 participants. The motorsport medicine training course lasts four months.
The F1 medical team said it would need nurses trained in handling trauma as well as doctors with various expertise, including airway management.

By Valarie Tan, Channel NewsAsia

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