DRASH Shelters Used for Mardi Gras Temporary Urgent Care Clinic

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FREDERICK, MD - New Orleans' Mardi Gras is typically marked by spectacular parades featuring floats, pageants, elaborate costumes, masked balls, and people dancing in the streets.

A lesser known fact is that the influx of people into the city at this time of the year inevitably leads to a surge in medical aid, both on the scene and typically in nearby hospitals.  Every year area hospitals are overwhelmed by the surge of patients during the week leading up to the event, so this year, local EMS officials decided to do things differently.

During the week leading up to Mardi Gras, revellers in need of medical care were able to seek help in three mobile temporary care facilities provided by the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, and the New Orleans Emergency Medical Services.

The facilities, which were comprised of four military-grade, climate-controlled Deployable Rapid Assembly Shelters (DRASH) from Reeves EMS, provided nearly 2,000 square feet for urgent care, 442 square feet for medical care and 304 square feet to use as a command post area. It was staffed by Board certified emergency medicine physicians, registered nurses, licensed paramedics and emergency medical technicians to handle minor traumatic injuries and illnesses during the carnival weekend. By the end of the week, the clinic responded to 1,164 calls for service.

“This is a real boost for our Mardi Gras operations,” said Col. Jerry Sneed, director of the city’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. “One can never anticipate the unknown, but having the necessary resources in place makes the difference in the outcome.”

DRASH features six different series of shelters with 45 models of multiple widths and lengths. Although single models range in size from 109 – 1,250 square feet, all shelters can be interconnected, allowing for effective joint operations. DRASH has been used extensively by all branches of the US Military as tactical operations centers, medical facilities and forward operating bases.

All of the emergency services provided during that week were free of charge to revellers. For more on DRASH shelters, visit www.reevesems.com/shelters.

For downloadable photos and more information, contact Naeran Rubio at 845-359-6066, ext. 174.