During the World Cup, currently being held in South Africa, spectators can get help addressing unexpected healthcare needs by downloading iTriage, a free app for smartphones.
Healthagen, a Lakewood, Colo.-based maker of healthcare software, supported the emergency preparation efforts in South Africa prior to the FIFA World Cup kick-off on June 11, and has added hospitals and healthcare facilities across eight South African provinces to the iPhone app.
With these new additions, spectators in crowded tournament will be better able to find a medical facility such as the 3,000-bed Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, which is the world's largest hospital, and the closest to the main World Cup stadium.
Cup officials said incidences like a stampede that occurred in 2001 have emergency response teams concerned. Coupled with recent staffing shortage reports from South African paramedics, officials said visitors from around the globe needed to know how to access the closest healthcare facility and the GPS capabilities of iTriage will help them find a provider.
"Coping with a major disaster is difficult for any country, but add an influx of tourists to a stressed healthcare system and you have the potential for many issues to develop. We wanted to support the athletes, families, and tourists during the 2010 World Cup with an additional medical resource," said Peter Hudson, M.D., Healthagen CEO. "iTriage puts critical healthcare facility information into the hands of spectators, so that when illness or injury occur, all the information needed is in the palm of a spectator's hand."