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FC Barcelona has healthcare services in place to ensure a rapid response to any emergencies requiring immediate intervention at sports venues such as the Spotify Camp Nou, and the club's other sports facilities, including the Palau Blaugrana and the Estadi Johan Cruyff. People coming to the ground on match days are reassured by the presence of more than a hundred professionals, divided across forty points throughout the venue, to offer quick and efficient attention in cases of health emergencies both on the pitch and in the stands.
This operation complies with Decree 30/2015 of the Government of Catalonia that obliges sports venues to have a Self-Protection Plan (PAU) that establishes the sanitary services that must be guaranteed on a match day, and which vary depending on the capacity of the ground, which in the case of the Spotify Camp Nou is as many as 99,000 people, currently making it the largest stadium in Europe. This service must offer medical care to the people involved in the game and the organisers (footballers, coaches, referees, etc.) as well as to members, fans, workers, media and members of the boards of directors and, in European competitions, to UEFA members. It is one of the most comprehensive regulations of its kind in the whole of Spain and is especially focused on guaranteeing the safety of everyone in the ground. FC Barcelona has always made all the necessary efforts and provided all resources to comply with these requirements, which are fully approved by PROCICAT, putting the health and safety of the people who attend its sporting events as its top priority.
Network of medical units throughout the stadium
On a match day at Spotify Camp Nou, there are more than a hundred professionals working in the medical operation, including medical staff, nursing, healthcare professionals, coordinators and administrative staff. This service is made up of FC Barcelona staff together with outsourced medical professionals, and staff from the Red Cross and the ambulance service. In total, it consists of 1 service coordinator, a doctor who oversees operations, 1 nurse coordinator, 1 operations coordinator, 5 doctors, 16 nurses, 1 service administrator in the central dispensary, plus the Red Cross team made up of 1 coordinator, 2 nurses and 20 units made up of a minimum of two people each. The service also has 4 mobile units made up of 3 Semi-Automated External Defibrillator (AED) specialists, as well as a wheelchair and portable stretcher used by the ambulance service; 12 paramedics, 2 for each of the 6 ambulances and 9 paramedics operating the two electric stretchers on the pitch.
The medical staff are distributed at about forty different points around the stadium, strategically distributed to guarantee a quick and efficient response. Some of the most important spaces are: a Central Dispensary, located at Gate 59, in the lateral zone of the Spotify Camp Nou, and a small clinic to attend to emergencies; 11 peripheral dispensaries distributed around the entrances to the different sectors of the stadium; 6 ambulances located on the perimeter of the ground - five Advanced Life Support (ALS) and one Basic Life Support (BLS); and also, a dispensary by the dressing rooms and two electric stretchers on the pitch. All these spaces are equipped with several AEDs complete with defibrillator monitors to perform high-quality cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and which the paramedics can move to any point in the stadium.
In the event that a patient needs to be transferred from the Spotify Camp Nou to an external health centre, the usual hospital for adults is Hospital Clínic de Barcelona. For children it is Hospital Sant Joan de Deu. And in the case of players, coaches and referees, as long as their life is not under threat, these are taken to Barcelona Hospital. All these centres are just a few minutes away from the stadium by ambulance.
What to do in the case of a health issue
As a first measure, if someone is unwell when entering the stadium, the most advisable thing is, before taking their seat, to inform the club staff and visit one of the medical assistance points to be found inside the Spotify Camp Nou.
In the event that the issue arises in the stands, if possible please go to the nearest medical attention point in that area of the stadium. If the health issue means you are unable to move, then you or your companions or people sitting near you should immediately inform the nearest member of staff in the stands, either the stewards who are usually wearing reflective vests, or security, operations and venue staff. These workers will immediately activate the security protocol which guarantees that a member of the medical staff will arrive in less than two minutes. Whenever possible, the patient will be moved to a more suitable and private location for the proper exercise of medical duties.
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