JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Disease distribution and medical resources during the Beijing 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

BACKGROUND: Appropriate planning and staffing for medical services at large-scale athletic events is essential to provide for a safe and successful competition. There are few well-documented accounts describing the demand for such services. The present study provided the data from the Beijing 2008 Olympics and Paralympics, with a view to provide the guidance for planning future events.

METHODS: A total of 22 029 and 8046 patients, who received medical care from a physician at an Olympic or Paralympic medical station, were included. The patient proportion among different personnel, various disease proportions at different kinds of venues, and the disease spectrum at specified venues at the Olympics and Paralympics were analyzed.

RESULTS: At both games, the patient proportion varied by accreditation status. The staff accounted for the largest number of visits at the Olympics (44.83%) and Paralympics (36.95%), with respiratory diseases the most common. Various disease spectrums were discovered at the different kinds of venues. Surgical diseases were the most frequently listed reason for visits, both at competition and non-competition venues, especially during the Paralympics. The sport-related injuries accounted for a majority of the surgical cases during both games. At training venues, ear nose and throat diseases accounted for the greatest number of visits during both games.

CONCLUSIONS: During both games, people contracted different diseases at different venues. Adequate surgeons should be designated to offer assistance mostly in trauma situations. Appropriate numbers of physicians in respiratory diseases and otorhinolaryngology is of great importance.

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