Australian sports medicine experts invited to lend skills for Vancouver Winter Olympics

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Two of Australia's sports medicine experts have accepted the only invitation issued to non-Canadian physiotherapists to provide physiotherapy services at the Vancouver Winter Olympics polyclinic.

From February 12-28 2010, Mark Brown and Maria Constantinou, QLD physiotherapists and husband and wife team, will be snowed under providing health-care needs for Olympic athletes and officials residing within the Athletes Village.

Mark Brown, who is also Sports Medicine Australia QLD Branch Executive Officer, was personally approached by the Medical Director of the Games to take part.

He believes this opportunity shows how highly Australian sports medicine professionals are regarded overseas.

"Competition for places within the medical program for the Olympics is very competitive and as far as I know we are the only non-Canadian physiotherapists chosen to work with the Canadian host nation medical program," said Mr Brown.

"We are honoured to have our physiotherapy expertise recognised by one of the biggest sports medicine events on the calendar and look forward to working at the Games and utilising our skills within varying winter sports and a vastly different climatic environment.

"By working at these sort of events our physiotherapy and sports medicine knowledge is vastly increased which enables us to bring back knowledge to assist athletes on home soil.

"This knowledge can also be used by Sports Medicine Australia throughout courses and professional continuing education programs to ensure participants receive contemporary and best practice information," said Mr Brown.

Mark previously worked as the Director of Physiotherapy for the Sydney Olympics.

The polyclinic is a 10,000-square-foot multi-disciplinary facility that includes comprehensive health care and medical services including emergency medicine (available 24 hours); primary care and sports medicine; a full range of therapy services; dentistry; an eye clinic; imaging; a diagnostic laboratory; and a full spectrum of consultant specialists. Essentially, most health-care needs for athletes or officials residing at the village will be provided at the polyclinic.

Further members from Sports Medicine Australia will work with the Australian Olympic and Paralympic teams during the Vancouver Winter Olympics.

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