Nevada tourist Carolyn Persinger never expected she would need urgent medical care during her July visit to the America’s Cup in San Francisco. But, after she took a nasty fall at America’s Cup Park, fast care was precisely what she got from Kaiser Permanente physicians and clinicians. Persinger was treated at Kaiser Permanente’s high-tech emergency medical clinic located at Pier 29—and, at the same time, also was “seen” by a surgical specialist 60 miles away in San Jose.
“I just tripped, not watching where I was walking,” said Persinger, now back home in Nevada. “The doctors and nurses were all very nice, and very professional.”
When Persinger was wheeled into the Kaiser Permanente medical site, she was feeling a lot of pain in her ankle. After an X-ray revealed her ankle was fractured, Dr. Brian Lin arranged for a video consultation with Kaiser Permanente San Jose Podiatric Surgeon Dr. Michael Graves.
Thanks to Kaiser Permanente’s industry-leading electronic health record, KP HealthConnect, the surgeon was able to view the X-ray images in his computer as he spoke directly with the patient.
“She clearly had never seen anything like a video medical consultation before,” said Lin, reflecting on the incident. “After I treated her, I linked up with Dr. Graves on my computer, and he gave Carolyn detailed after-care instructions from his office, almost 60 miles away from Pier 29.”
A photo taken that day shows Lin holding the laptop computer and Persinger speaking with Graves, who was on the screen providing real-time medical instructions based on her X-ray and condition.
“Kaiser Permanente is using exciting technology to improve patient care,” said Graves.
Persinger is one of more than 200 America’s Cup visitors and staff who have received high-quality and technologically advanced medical care from Kaiser Permanente, the Official Medical Services and Health Care Partner of the America’s Cup. To serve sailors and spectators alike, the health-care provider set up two fully-equipped medical sites, one at Pier 29, the other at the America’s Cup Village on the Marina Green.
“We are bringing the high-quality care we provide every day in Kaiser Permanente’s medical centers out to the community, to the places where our members and the public live, learn, work and play,” said Dr. Hernando Garzon, medical lead of the America’s Cup Medical Services. “We’re showing the broader community the benefits of Kaiser Permanente’s medical expertise and advanced technology.”
Each Kaiser Permanente medical site at The America’s Cup is equipped to access KP HealthConnect, Kaiser Permanente’s advanced electronic medical record. As a result, if a KP member comes in with an injury, doctors have an instantaneous view of the member’s history.
The medical sites are staffed by a rotating team of more than 100 Kaiser Permanente emergency department physicians, nurses, and support staff. The sites are equipped with x-ray machines, cardiac emergency equipment, and a broad supply of medications that might be needed in emergency situations. The treatment bays have gurneys for patients and privacy curtains. Kaiser Permanente also works with the San Francisco Police and Fire Departments to provide emergency transport to hospitals if needed.
Fortunately, most of the injuries so far have been minor—scrapes bruises, cuts and a couple of fractures.
After arriving at the medical site in a wheelchair, Persinger left with her scrapes bandaged, her ankle braced, and some crutches to help her get around. She also got pain medicine and a detailed print-out of the after-care she needed. “It was only the second day our Pier 29 medical site was open,” said Lin.
By phone, Persinger reported that she’s still feeling some pain, but her doctor in Nevada expects her to make a full recovery.
“He says you guys did a great job for me,” she said, “and I agree.”