Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First-Aid Volunteers Keep Fans Healthy

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First-Aid Volunteers Keep Fans Healthy

Article excerpt

PONTE VEDRA BEACH -- Paul Garfinkel stood inside a sparsely

furnished room Thursday and watched a television broadcast of

the first round of The Players Championship.

Golfer Tom Watson walked across the screen, his score

superimposed on the picture.

"Boy, Watson's game has picked up," Garfinkel said, standing

next to a refrigerator. "This is how we get to watch golf in

First Aid."

Garfinkel, administrator of the Jacksonville Orthopaedic

Institute, is in charge of the 35 volunteers who manned three

first aid stations at the tournament. The main station was

tucked behind a volunteers food tent in a strip of steel

warehouse buildings well off the course.

Using radios and pagers, Garfinkel kept in contact with two

field stations, where volunteers from a variety of medical

agencies and businesses expected to fill the week dispensing

aspirin and bandages and treating bug bites.

By noon on the first day of tournament play, two older fans had

succumbed to the morning's humidity, needing care but apparently

not seriously ill. A woman came in with a bleeding finger she

had jammed in a door.

At a station between the 11th green and the tee for the 12th

hole, volunteers said they helped golfer Glen Day with what may

have been a virus.

"Man, he was coughing up a lung out there," drug company

manager Ken Ray said. Registered nurse Maureen Last gave Day a

bottle of cough suppressants.

Garfinkel said the volunteers included seven doctors and a

number of paramedics and emergency medical technicians. He said

a medic or an EMT was scheduled to man each of the field

stations each day. Physicians, in addition to two tournament

doctors, were on call by beeper or phone.

Garfinkel said the number of rescue workers from Jacksonville's

fire service was increased this year.

"Some of these guys are covering fire rescue at night and

coming in here at 8 a.m.," he said. "They're used to responding

to the serious medical emergencies, the cardiacs and the serious

car wrecks, but they're also good at the minor things. …

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