London 2012 organisers unveil athletes' health clinic

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The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has unveiled the health clinic where athletes will be treated during the sp...

The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has unveiled the health clinic where athletes will be treated during the sporting spectacle.

Known as the ‘polyclinic’, the state-of-the-art healthcare centre will be open 24 hours a day during the Games, and will be based at the Athletes’ Village, at the Olympic Park in Stratford.

It is anticipated that up to 200 athletes a day could be treated at the clinic, which has cost £23 million to develop.

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As well as offering treatment for strains and sprains – such as sports physiotherapy and osteopathy – eye care, dentistry and podiatry services will also be available.

In addition to the above, athletes will also receive treatment for illnesses such as a cold, and any cuts and grazes they sustain during competition.

An in-house pharmacy will be stationed at the clinic too, and primary care services will also be available.  

The polyclinic will also feature a doping control station where athletes will be tested for illegal substances.

A mix of 10 London 2012 staff, 500 Games Maker Volunteers and 80 on-call health specialists will run the clinic during the Olympics and Paralympics.

LOCOG has stressed the care that athletes will receive at the clinics will be “immediate and necessary”, and although the healthcare services will be available to coaches and support staff, no one will be treated for existing conditions or chronic ailments.

According to the organisers, the polyclinic features “some of the sophisticated medical equipment currently available in the UK”.

Discussing the clinic during a media preview of the facility on Monday, the Sports Director of London 2012, Debbie Jevans, said: “Even the most minor ailment can have serious implications upon an elite athlete's performance.

“We have worked hard to equip the polyclinic to respond quickly and provide athletes with the treatment they require on site.”

Meanwhile the LOCOG Chairman, Lord Sebastian Coe, added: “We have always put athletes' needs at the heart of the Games.

“When they are preparing for the most important moment in their sporting careers, it's vital they are in peak condition with all the support they need.”

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