Nearly 200 trained Red Cross first aid volunteers from across South Louisiana treated injured or sick Super Bowl event attendees atthree first aid stations in downtown New Orleans. Red Cross volunteers also are serving at first stations through Carnival season, providing community services spanning three weeks.
The volunteers this Super Bowl weekend treated individuals from age 2 to 75, mostly for exhaustion, abrasions and other non-life threatening illnesses.
During the first weekend of Mardi Gras and Super Bowl weekend, volunteers provided care to 21 people, including 8 patients referred to Emergency Medical Services. The Red Cross volunteers also assisted 511 people.
"We are pleased to offer our support to the community, through a generous gift from Dr. and Mrs. Keith Van Meter and in partnership with New Orleans Emergency Medical Services," said Kay W. Wilkins, CEO of the South Louisiana Region. “Our volunteers hope to help alleviate some of the strain placed on New Orleans EMS and healthcare infrastructure by providing basic first aid care at some of the highly populated areas along the parade route and near Super Bowl events.”
First aid volunteers, who assemble by 11 a.m. each day, work until about midnight under the supervision of the New Orleans Emergency Medical Services, which transports patients to nearby hospitals if additional medical assistance is necessary.
"The first aid stations are staffed with competent American Red Cross volunteers who are trained, CPR certified and know how to respond to injuries before the arrival of EMS personnel," said Dr. Jeffrey Elder, director of New Orleans Emergency Medical Services.
Volunteers will continue operating first aid stations along parade routes beginning Thursday, Feb. 7, through Fat Tuesday, Feb. 13. The Mardi Gras stations are positioned along Uptown and Mid-City routes to treat parade-goers’ minor illnesses and injuries.
First aid stations are frequently established at large gatherings, such as parades, conventions and sporting events.
"The City of New Orleans appreciates the help of the American Red Cross volunteers and the support of Dr. and Mrs. Keith Van Meter," Dr. Elder said.