The Boston Marathon is one of the most iconic athletic events in the world. Elite athletes travel from all corners of the word to run the historic 26.2 mile race, all the while being cheered by die-hard fans who line the streets with signs, water bottles and refreshing orange slices.
But months before the popular race begins, preparation has been under way to ensure that the routes are safe and that there is more than enough emergency responders and security personnel to keep the marathon route and its surrounding areas safe.
Collaboration is Key to Safety
The Longwood Medical and Academic Area’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Team has long been a crucial member of the state-wide security efforts, mostly because of our proximity to the route as well as the expert and highly accredited healthcare facilities located in our area. Planning began last November as hundreds of representatives from local, regional, state, federal, private sector and non-profit agencies participated in planning meetings, training sessions, and exercises.
On Marathon Monday, MASCO’s Emergency Preparedness Committee will be in constant contact with local First Responder agencies such as Boston Police Department, MA State Police, Boston EMS and the Office of Public Health Preparedness to receive updates on local preparedness efforts, activations and mobilization on Marathon Monday. The LMA Joint Operations Center (JOC) will be activated with MASCO Emergency Preparedness Staff along with representatives from the LMA institutions to monitor the day’s events and activities. Periodic updates and important information will be distributed electronically to LMA emergency and security committee representatives throughout the day. Additionally, a designated MASCO staff member will be stationed at the Medical Intelligence Center (MIC) to assist liaison efforts with the LMA JOC.
Celebrating Local Runners
Not only do MASCO and LMA staff work to keep the Marathon safe and secure, hundreds of people who work in the LMA or come here for medical care also run the race for personal and professional reasons.
For Katie Janeway, MD, it’s personal AND professional. Janeway is a pediatric oncologist with Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and a cancer survivor, having been diagnosed and treated for acute myeloid leukemia in 2014.
Janeway (center) and her DFCI running buddies
“I really want to show myself and others out there who are struggling with cancer that recovery is possible. And I can’t think of better way to do that than training to run the Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber,” Janeway says.
Steve and Vanessa Sheehan were set to welcome twins Tyler and Charlotte in June 2016 when the unthinkable happened: the twins were born 13 weeks premature. Weighing only two pounds each, Tyler and Charlotte spent the next 112 days in the Klarman Family Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
As they watched their newborns eventually thrive, Vanessa and Steve received what they call truly compassionate, extraordinary care from the entire NICU staff. “Nurses, respiratory therapists, doctors and other specialists—everyone was just so incredible. Countless heartwarming experiences brought sunshine to some of the darkest days,” Steve says. The Sheehan family credits the NICU’s state-of-the-art equipment and world-class staff for helping to give their children a healthy start. “Every day with Tyler and Charlotte is a gift and we are forever indebted to BIDMC and our amazing care team,” Steve says.
On Monday, a very grateful father will run 26.2 miles as one of the 62 team runners on BIDMC’s Marathon team, with funds raised by Steve to go directly to the BIDMC Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Best wishes and congratulations to all who run on Marathon Monday!
Note: Some editorial content courtesy of DFCI and BIDMC Corporate Communications Offices