FastMed Urgent Care Issues Crowd Survival Guide for Conventioneers
Charlotte, NC; August 31, 2012 – With 50,000 attendees expected at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC next week, FastMed Urgent Care issued a Crowd Survival Guide for convention-goers to help protect their health and safety. FastMed is the largest urgent care organization in North Carolina, and the closest to the center of convention activities.
“There are general precautions that people can take when attending large-scale events, and there are North Carolina-specific health issues that visitors should be aware of,” said Jason Williams, MPAS, Ph.D, Chief Executive Officer, Eastern Region for FastMed. “The team at FastMed thought it would help to share a medical perspective as Charlotte welcomes tens of thousands of conventioneers.”
The FastMed team, which consists of medical doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and senior experts in the overall health care system, developed the FastMed Crowd Survival Guide to help orient conventioneers to Charlotte specifically and to staying safe in large crowds generally:
- Health Conditions: It’s a good idea for visitors to at least be aware of specific health conditions that can show up in Charlotte. These health issues are not exclusive to Charlotte, but they may be new to people visiting from other parts of the country. FastMed is equipped to treat all of these issues (and all other non life-threatening conditions):
- West Nile Virus: transmitted by mosquito bites, symptoms include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, rashes; typically treated successfully with certain antibiotics.
- Flu: The CDC is starting to report cases of Swine Flu, and like many parts of the country the regular flu is already possible; symptoms include fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, aches, fatigue; there’s no cure for the flu but the best way is to avoid it with the yearly vaccine, and those with flu can be given treatments to lessen the effects.
- Whooping Cough: highly contagious bacterial disease typically found in children but adults can contract it too; symptoms develop into severe coughing and can last up to six weeks, antibiotics can shorten that time, but vaccination is the best prevention.
- Lyme Disease: a bacterial infection transmitted by a tick; in the early stages you may experience flu-like symptoms that can include a stiff neck, chills, fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, fatigue, muscle aches, and joint pain, large expanding skin rash around the area of the tick bite, and in more advanced conditions nerve problems and arthritis especially in the knees; in early stages Lyme disease can be effectively treated with antibiotics.
- Crowd Survival Skills: Practice safe event skills by following these tips:
- When you enter an arena or stadium, pay attention to emergency exit signs; that’s the time to think about it because you won’t have time if something unexpected happens.
- Have a support network with you at the event if possible, and have a way of getting in touch and a meeting place should there be an emergency.
- If large crowds bother you, consider arriving at off-traffic times (come early or late and leave early or late) to avoid the inevitable crunch of the crowd.
- Keep a little bottle of hand sanitizer with you and use it frequently. You’ll likely be shaking a lot of hands and you don’t want anyone to share an illness with you.
- Dress in layers. Those large halls can be either too cold or too hot, so be your own HVAC system and regulate your own temperature with clothing layers.
- If you see something, say something. If you see something suspicious, report it to event security or police, including unattended bags or suspicious behavior.
- Type of Care: Choose the right type of health care if you or a friend need it. Urgent care is a very cost effective and faster alternative to going to a hospital emergency room; but go to the ER if the health issues are life-threatening.
- Location: Scope out the closest medical facility to convention activities. FastMed has several clinics open weekends 365 days a year with extended-hours in Charlotte. FastMed Urgent Care in the Wilkinson Boulevard Shopping Center at 3250 Wilkinson Blvd. is the closest of any urgent care company in the city to the center of convention activities. With questions call (704) 319-5176. For a complete list of FastMed locations in Charlotte visit www.fastmed.com.
- Insurance: If you need medical attention, be sure your insurance is accepted. For instance, FastMed accepts major national health plans such as Aetna, CIGNA, United, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and others.
About FastMed Urgent Care:
FastMed Urgent Care is a North Carolina-based owner and operator of urgent care facilities with locations throughout North Carolina and Arizona. FastMed focuses on the delivery of non-appointment based medicine to the non-emergency patient market. The urgent care centers are open 365 days a year and are staffed with experienced and licensed physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners. For more information, please visit www.fastmed.com. FastMed is managed by an affiliated entity of one of the investment funds of the Comvest Group.
Reuel Heyden | Dir. Of Community Relations
FastMed Urgent Care