Ruth Bird, Tim Nuttall
Journal of Paramedic Practice, Vol. 8, Iss. 3, 04 Mar 2016, pp 138 - 143

Background: Craven Cottage has seen plans approved for a new riverside stand to
expand capacity within the stadium from 26 000 to over 30 0000.
Aims and Method: In order to anticipate any increase in use of medical services
during match days, this study aimed to review nine seasons of medical data for Fulham
Football Club. We examined the usage of crowd medical services to see if the number
of injuries/illnesses requiring medical assistance at each match had any correlation to
the crowd numbers in attendance. A retrospective data analysis was done on injury
location, type of injury, whether the patient required transporting to hospital or whether
follow up was recommended. The aim being to assess whether increased capacity
would impact on local emergency services and primary care.
Results: Between 2004-2013, there were 830 presentations to medical services, 43
patients were transported to hospital (5.18%) with 32 (3.85%) being advised to see
their GP. Of these, 512 were new injuries/trauma and 318 medical presentations. There
was one fatal non-traumatic cardiac arrest and 19 assaults. The data showed total
crowd attendances of 4 157 597 over the 10-year period, with mean crowd numbers
per game of 18 878. From these total crowd attendances there was a consultation
rate per 10 000 gate admissions of 1.97. This is comparable to previously published
Premiership data. Analysis of the location of accidental injuries showed no statistical
differences in injury patterns; however, regarding mechanism of injury, more assaults
occurred in areas where fans mix, irrespective of capacity per match.
Conclusions: This study has shown no significant differences or trends in trauma,
medical cases or consultations per 10 000 gate admission. Plans to increase capacity
should not affect provision of medical cover, though will be accounted for in major
incident planning in the number of medical staff required to attend matches to cover for
extra ticket sales. GP and A&E services should not be stretched by the increased capacity.

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