Prometheus Medics prepare for Mongol Derby in Ulaanbaatar

Written by the Prometheus Medical team. Find out more & meet the medics looking after the Derbyists in this post.

Day 2 in Ulaanbaatar

Our second day in UB was focused on Crew specific briefing & training – still no riders in sight. As a team we undertook checking and testing of electronic equipment,  which consists of; the SPOT tracker – a small GPS enabled personal locator that enables  The Adventurist HQ to track the positions of all the Crew and Riders throughout the event,  our GPS, and the BGAN – our portable satellite internet connection.

The medical team visited the SOS clinical established the casualty evacuation  protocols for this year – again the availability of support helicopters is likely to be sporadic  at best, with the 3 commercial airframes available being principally used by the tourist
industry – still there is a potential for helicopter evacuation in the event of a serious  casualty. The SOS clinic itself is an excellent facility, with a resuscitation bay, and 2 HDU  beds, as well as on site X-ray facilities, and a capable clinical laboratory. They also own 3  well equipped ambulances available for overland casualty evacuation – Deb assures me  that these provided an excellent service last year!

Whilst at SOS we met with Dr John Gasson, the South African Medical Director of  the clinic, who is tremendously supportive of The Mongol Derby, who will be coming out to  the start line to wave the riders off on Sunday morning; we also collected this years  supply of IV fluids and oxygen.

Back at Adventurists HQ we printed out a good stock of bespoke Mongol Derby  2013 medical documentation – Chris found himself unable to sleep on the flight out, so we  now have the full set of ‘Trauma Record Sheet’, ‘Medical Record Sheet’, and ‘Observation  Chart’ in the medical folder, alongside all the patient documentation / pre-race medical  questionnaires / insurance details. We capped off a busy day with some light entertainment, taking the form of a dinner at Revolution Bar, followed by some excellently executed karaoke. Encore.

Day 3 in Ulaanbaatar

Today we met the riders! A truly international set, with an impressive depth of equestrian experience, these 30 individuals look primed for the next 10 days of adventure  - though for today any urge to get out and get racing needed to be suppressed, as they  were corralled within the business level of the Ramada hotel for a full day of Rider Briefing.  A reasonably quiet day for the medical team, we were able to take a back-row seat for the  of full panoply briefings, ranging from a comprehensive overview of the course to training in the use of their electronic equipment (they carry the same SPOT tracker and GPS as the Crew).

Chris delivered the pre-race medical briefing, complete with an opportunistic  practical demonstration of the primary survey when one of the riders fainted in the ‘heat’ of  the moment. Although a very minor medical problem, we felt as a team that the rider  should have some basic tests performed at the SOS clinic as the upcoming 10 days are going to be physically very demanding. This also gave us an opportunity to conduct a  ‘live’ (albeit short range) casualty evacuation to the SOS clinic – we are very please to say that everything ran very smoothly, and that the line of communication with DrJohn Gasson  were excellent, and the rider returned to us in the evening with a clean bill of health.


The evening dinner was at the fabulous curry house Hazaras – the traditional first  night venue – and the Crew & Riders had an opportunity to socialise, learn a bit about each  other, discuss the upcoming event, and – most importantly – allowed the riders a chance to suss-out their competition!

An early return to the hotel for the medical crew in order to pack personal kit and  equipment ready for the move out to the start area tomorrow morning.

The Prometheus Medics will be updating regularly from the racecourse, you can follow them on Facebook and Twitter.