An event has the potential to significantly impact the local community beyond what is clearly visible. Outside of the expected interference to normal traffic movements potential impact, both positive and adverse, on local businesses, events have the potential to place a significant strain on the health and emergency management system in the state. It is important and good practice for organisers of such events to undertake a proper risk assessment of their event and ensure that proper planning of the event is undertaken to minimise the risk of harm to the local community, the broader health and emergency management system in the state and ultimately, reduce the risk of adverse affects and any subsequent litigation.
Some mass gatherings are easier to plan for than others (such as regular events that attract local crowds), however events that occur on short notice, or that cause a significant influx of population to an area that does not have the resources to manage a large burst of people could prove disasterous. By undertaking a proper risk assessment, plannning and communicating with local and state health and emergency authorities, steps and arrangements can be but in place to ensure that the impact of an event can be managed and any associated risks properly mitigated. Community events pose some unique challenges on the local community which the organisers of such events, need to have properly considered, including (without limitation):
- The impact that the drawing of large crowds will have on local medical and health services. Is the local hospital and medical centre able to cope and cater for so many more people?
- How will local business be impacted and what considerations need to be put in place?
- How will this event impact on the local community as a whole?
- What health challenges may be faced due to this event that are not common to this area?
- Which local government and state authorities should be contacted and made aware of this event and the plans associated with it?
- What media attention will the event draw?
- What type of disaster could the event be faced with and what are the plans should something happen? Is the event being held in a bushfire prone area?
- What are the contingency arrangements should existing resources run out? What if bottled water sells out quicker than expected?
- Ensuring that appropriate expertise has been arranged for technical aspect of the event planning process.
- What communicable diseases may the event be faced with? If there is food being served at the event, is HACCCP certification required?
- Does the event have an emergency plan for events that are emergencies but do not affect the whole event?
- How will media communications be managed during an dafter the event?
- Appointment of a suitable structure for making financial and operational decisions on the day.
- Any risks that have been identified but cannot be adequately mitigated.
As this is merely a snapshot of the many factors associated with planning an event that do not actually involve the event itself, this can be a very daunting exercise.
Wherever possible, an Event Medical Plus Account Manager can assist you with the relevant aspects of this planning process, offer Event Medical Plus services that would assist in mitigating such factors and even guide you on appropriate avenues to investigate solutions to these challenges. Should you wish to seek guidance regarding your upcoming event and simply wish to discuss your specific event with an Account Manager, you may wish to contact us using our Contact Us form.
Alternatively, if you have already decided that your event has a need for medical services, you may wish to provide us some more information by completing our more detailed Request a Quote form.