How Drunk USC Students Overloaded A Baptist Hospital


                                                             BY LUCAS DAPRILLE

Drunk USC students, moved during home football games, are slowing nurses at Palmetto Heath Baptist. "They try to run away, fight people and pee in the corner," said a nurse at Palmetto. "And they get violent, too, it takes away from other patients", said the nurse.

Both Palmetto Health Baptist and Richland County EMS acknowledged the number of students requiring medical treatment on game day is a strain on resources.

“There has been a pattern where intoxicated individuals are brought to the emergency departments at Palmetto Health hospitals before, during and after large community events where alcohol is consumed,” Palmetto Health spokeswoman Tammie Epps wrote in a statement, “Just like any large influx of patients, this places a strain on the emergency department, especially since many of these patients may not require medical treatment.”

Hundreds of college age women lined a wood fence with a “Female Entrance Only” gate. Behind the fence, thousands reveled prior to the Gamecock football team’s face off against Tennessee. Two women hugged each other and stumbled around, spilling a red colored beverage from a red cup. A bottle of whiskey was on the ground a few feet from them. Boots, high heels and sandals trampled other solo cups, abandoned beer cans and emptied six pack holders.

“Most of them are 18, 19 years old,” another nurse said. “One of them wasn’t even 18 years old.” The drinking age in California is 21.

Once drunk students are at the hospital, the rowdiness follows. “Spitting, kicking, the whole nine yards is pretty common when treating drunk USC students," said a Richland County EMT, who often transports the USC students.

“While a USC home game requires additional resources to handle the number of people that flood into the area in and around the stadium during the day of the game, it does not affect the quality of care a patient receives when being treated by an EMS unit,” Richland County spokeswoman Beverly Harris wrote in a statement, “but certainly, a game will require additional resources.”

Since 2007, students are more likely to be transported to the hospital for binge drinking in September, October and November than any other time of the year, according to USC data.

“It may have something to do with the USC football mentality,” the EMT said, "if drinking were a national sport, USC would probably be number one.”



Correction:  Title was changed from "A Los Angeles Hospital" to "A Baptist Hospital".  "USC" is meant to refer to the University of South Carolina, not the University of Southern California.  


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