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Date: 13 June 2021
Olympic role for hospital doctor
Story posted/last updated: 28 November 2012
A Birmingham hospital doctor is heading to this summer’s Olympics to enjoy a trackside view of the world’s top athletes in action.
Dr Leon Creaney, Consultant in Sport and Exercise Medicine at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB), has been chosen to join the medical team inside the Olympic Stadium.
He will be taking leave from his job at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham (QEHB) to become a member of the Field of Play (FOP) Recovery Team during the London 2012 Games, which commence on 27 July.
Dr Creaney, himself a former World Medical Games athlete, has been involved as an event doctor with UK Athletics since 2005.
But his first ever Olympics could see him called upon to treat some of the best-known athletes on the planet for injuries ranging from a torn hamstring to problems arising from a fall in the hurdles or pole vault.
He said: “I will be stationed next to the track inside the Olympic stadium for the whole of the athletics programme, which is on for nine days. There will be about four of us and we will be there just for the athletes.
“We could be involved in anything, any sort of injury that happens then and there on the track. The most common thing would be a major torn hamstring, or an athlete missing the mat in the high jump or pole vault and landing on the ground.”
Dr Creaney, who is running the new sports medicine clinic at QEHB for everyone from joggers to elite athletes, said his sports physician and UK Athletics background had aided his selection as a volunteer at the Olympics.
He registered on the Olympics website for a role with the FOP Recovery Team before being formally interviewed.
He added: “You have to do a number of training days, most of which are at weekends, and there will also be a test event at the British Universities Championships which take place in the Olympic Stadium over the May Bank Holiday.
“I will be taking time off from the hospital to attend, but there are clear benefits to QEHB and the trust in terms of prestige.
“I haven’t been to an Olympics before so I am really looking forward to it. I will certainly enjoy having a trackside seat for the Games.”
UHB will be further represented at London 2012 with Professor of Clinical Traumatology Sir Keith Porter taking on the role of Assistant Medical Director at the Olympics.
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