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Keep calm and rock on!

Madalyne Tucker looks at the medical and dental services on offer at Glastonbury Festival.

After a long two years of pandemic and missing its 50th year anniversary, 2022 sees the long-anticipated return of the largest greenfield music and performing arts festival in the world. During the last week in June, 210,000 people, including 63,000 staff and performers, leave their homes and travel to Worthy Farm in Somerset to participate in a four-day long party otherwise known as Glastonbury Festival.

Nine hundred acres in the Vale of Avalon, an area dating back many hundreds of years immersed in mythology and traditions is transformed into a city which is more than a mile and a half across, with a perimeter of eight and a half miles. The event is a thrilling and vibrant celebration but like any city, people become unwell or injured, therefore extensive healthcare facilities are provided on site reducing the need for referral to local NHS facilities to ensure that services are not overwhelmed.

Festival Medical Services (FMS) began at the Glastonbury Festival in 1979, where it has been the sole medical provider ever since. Festival Medical Services is a not-for-profit registered charity supporting healthcare and education projects linked to healthcare charities worldwide. It has grown to be one of the UK’s most respected event medical providers, delivering highquality care at many of the country’s most prestigious events.

Recently awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service, FMS is staffed by 1,500 volunteer medical professionals and support staff. A range of sophisticated services are provided at many events around the UK. Services include, but are not limited to doctors, nurses and nurse practitioners, paramedics and first responders, imaging services (X-ray and ultrasound), pharmacy services, mental health, wellbeing services and dental services.

It is unusual for an event to have an emergency dental service but, due to its If you would like to get involved or donate contact Festival Medical Services size and location, Glastonbury festival benefits from a fully functioning on-site mobile dental unit, with both sterilisation and X-ray facilities. The dental team consists of eight dentists, four DCPs and a service co-ordinator who work in shifts from Wednesday until Monday, 12 hours a day, including an out of hours telephone triage service. On average the dental team treat 15 patients a day. Patients present with a variety of dental emergencies such as dental pain, lost fillings, pericoronitis, luxated teeth and broken dentures. The only emergency treatment which is not offered on site is extraction – this is due to the lack of good post extraction aftercare available to festival goers. The great news is that emergency dental treatment is free, however patients are encouraged to donate to the FMS charity.

So, rock on June, welcome back to festivals and rest assure that the FMS dental team have your teeth covered!

If you would like to get involved or donate contact Festival Medical Services

Article written by

Madalyne Tucker

Account Manager, VSM Marketing

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