Exclusive: Medically-qualified volunteers at the Olympics including GPs, surgeons and dentists have been forced to sit through a ‘surreal’ training session – in how to prescribe paracetamol.
Hundreds of GPs and other doctors have volunteered as part of the Games’ medical team, as part of a competitive application process.
But doctors were left dumbstruck when a recent training session covered how to prescribe paracetamol, after clinic managers were told they must have a paracetamol prescribing policy in place and must demonstrate that all staff had been trained in the procedure.
Tony Kilcoyne, a dentist and a member of the General Dental Council, attended a training session on 16 March along with GPs and surgeons, among others. He told Pulse it was a ‘surreal’ moment: ‘When that happened you could hear a pin drop.’ ‘Everyone here knows how to do it. It was almost insulting. To be fair, the clinician leading the team stood up and said “I apologise in advance but I have to do this because technically the clinic at the Olympic Games has to be registered”.’ A spokesperson for the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games said: ‘We train all our volunteers whether they are aware of the procedures or not. As the organising committee we have to make sure our volunteers have the knowledge across the board. We’re not suggesting they do not know how to prescribe paracetamol, but we have to provide basic training.’