As the number of spectators attending the Olympic Games has steadily
increased, the scope of Olympic medicine has expanded beyond just caring for
athletes. In this issue of JAMA, 2 articles focus on the measures taken
to ensure the health of the estimated 2.2 million athletes, staff, and spectators
who attended the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta, Ga. The article
by Meehan et al1 describes the planning and
implementation of a public health surveillance and response system. The article
by Wetterhall et al2 examines the 10715 physician-patient
encounters recorded during the 17 days of the Olympic Games. These articles
provide valuable information for planning future Olympic Games, and present
useful lessons that can be applied to medical care for other mass gatherings
and special events.
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