San Francisco race's medical plan was approved before runner died 

The very agency whose director criticized the organizers of a half-marathon where a man died Sunday had no qualms with the medical plan submitted to it before the event.

RhodyCo, the organizer of the Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon, promised city officials it would have a doctor, a defibrillator, six emergency medical technicians, and a dedicated ambulance and emergency crew available at the finish line, public records show.

Spokeswoman Kathy Henning said the company complied with all those conditions.

Nonetheless, the race ended in tragedy. On an unseasonably warm day that set local temperature records, Peter Hass, 36, of Orinda died near the finish line in Golden Gate Park. He was pronounced dead at 10:40 a.m.

The permit was approved by the Interdepartmental Staff Committee on Traffic and Transportation. The medical plan apparently was submitted to the Emergency Medical Services Agency before Jan. 12, but Director Rob

Dudgeon said he does not know whether his agency approved the plan. That will be determined in the investigation, he said.

“Apparently, the resources they had proved insufficient,” Dudgeon said. “We’re looking to see if the medical plan was delivered as proposed.”

Promoters told The City they expected a crowd of 10,000 runners. Henning said registration was cut off at 10,000 and the actual registered attendance was 8,591.

Witnesses and Fire Department officials have claimed the company’s medical response was nowhere to be found. RhodyCo’s contractors dispute that, although officials with American Medical Response conceded their ambulance was on another race-related call when Hass collapsed.

But Dr. Hal Rosenberg, the chiropractic sports practitioner who was listed as the on-duty doctor, said the RhodyCo response was immediate following a call on the event’s radio.

Rosenberg said that when he got to Hass, a firefighter, paramedic and a doctor who had run the race were already there.

“I identified myself as being with the race medical team and offered my assistance,” Rosenberg said. “I was informed that the team that was performing CPR were medical professionals and so I let them continue.”

Race staff then offered the defibrillator to the doctor who was performing CPR, and Rosenberg said that doctor used the equipment on Hass.

A Fire Department ambulance did not respond until 22 minutes after a 911 call because of crowds and because three locations were given by 911 callers, fire Lt. Mindy Talmadge said.

bbegin@sfexaminer.com

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Brent Begin

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