This paper forms part of a larger research agenda focusing on research regarding ‘Schoolies’, the impact of ‘Schoolies’ on emergency health services, and strategies to provide adequate care to ‘Schoolies’ attendees and the host community.



To describe patient presentation characteristics and outcomes for people aged 16–18 years pre, during and post a planned youth mass gathering event (MGE): ‘Schoolies week’ on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.


This was a retrospective observational study, including patient presentations by all young adults requiring care in the ED or in‐event health services (EHS) over a 21‐day period in 2014. Data analysis included descriptive and inferential statistics.


A total of 1029 patient presentations were made by people aged 16–18 years to the ED and EHS over the 21‐day study period (139 pre, 695 during [275 in ED, 420 in EHS], 195 post Schoolies week). Some ED patient characteristics and outcomes varied between the pre, during and post Schoolies periods, such as patients age (P < 0.001), usual place of residence (P < 0.001) and not waiting for treatment (P = 0.015). Of the 24 375 registered MGE attendees, 420 (1.72% [95% confidence interval 1.57–1.89], 17.2/1000) presented for in‐event care. Most patients were allocated an Australasian Triage Scale category of 4 (n = 162, 65.6%), with toxicology related presentations (n = 169, 44.9%). Transportation to hospital was undertaken for seven MGE attendees (0.03% [95% confidence interval 0.01–0.06], 0.3/1000).


Establishment of an in‐event model of care for 1 week during Schoolies served as an effective hospital avoidance strategy for a planned youth MGE. Such in‐event models of care may be considered for other similar future MGE.


Crilly J, Ranse J, Bost N, Donnelly T, Timms J, Gilmour K, Aitken M, Johnston A. (2019). Emergency health care delivery for young adults during a planned mass gathering: A retrospective observational study. Emergency Medicine Australasia.

This paper can be found here: Emergency Medicine Australasia