A Visit to Ski Patrol: Kim-Marie's Trip Diary 5
There’s a saying on the slopes “be careful, you always get hurt on the last run of the day”.
JJ, my eleven year old tumbled down a blue run at the end of a long day of boarding heavy powder.
My first clue that something was wrong was when my three other children had been returned to me from ski school and no JJ!
I was understandably panicked when the ski school supervisor told me that JJ was on a ski patrol sled headed down the mountain. He explained that they don’t usually call the parents until they have them in the ski patrol hut.
This didn’t calm me down. He kindly walked me down to the hut where I waited for what felt like hours but was really probably ten minutes before they brought my baby down all cocooned in blankets. He had twisted his knee and they had his leg splinted. While I was about to cry, JJ was going on about how cool it was to ride down in the sled and how comfortable the pillows were.
Thankfully I’ve never been to ski patrol before. I was impressed with both the facilities and the medical staff. An Orthopedist is on duty at all times, as well as resident doctors, nurses and fair number of EMT’s. They assessed JJ just as they would in the ER at any hospital. He was quickly taken to an exam room and was seen by Dr. Matt Fuller. Dr. Fuller, or “Matt’ as he insisted I call him examined JJ’s knee and then had the attending doctor confirm his diagnosis of “banged up knee.”
Apparently it’s not common for children to tear an ACL or seriously injure themselves, but bad bruises and twisted knees can really hurt and keep a little one (or a big one) from being able to put enough pressure on their wounded leg to make it down the mountain.
It was comforting to know that he had been seen by a doctor and given the all clear. If they had needed to do X-rays, they have a machine right there. On our way out, I saw the heli-pad, I pray we never need that.
A ski patrol clinic is just like any other medical facility-- it’s not free. They take insurance (thankfully) but I didn’t have my children’s medical cards with me. The intake nurse suggested I photograph the front and back of the cards and keep the image on my phone--great idea, not just for emergencies but for routine visits to the pediatrician.
JJ is resting comfortably, and enjoying all of the extra attention. I’m thankful for the first class care, even if it was only a boo boo knee.
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