Southcoast Health Provides First Aid at the 2022 New Bedford 1/2 Marathon

Cheering at NB 1/2 Marathon

Our frontline St. Luke’s Emergency Department Staff lends a hand at the New Bedford Half Marathon

On Sunday, March 20, over 30 volunteers from the St. Luke’s Hospital Emergency Department put on their sneakers and provided first aid to runners along the 13.1-mile route of the New Bedford Half Marathon. Though the day began with thick fog rolling off New Bedford’s Harbor, the sky soon cleared into a beautiful spring day – perfect weather for the elite and recreational runners who participated in the race.  Cheering them on, the Southcoast medical team was prepared with water, ice, tissue, and every tool necessary to treat the varying ailments that often arise from long distance running.

At the race, the employee teams were easy to spot by the first aid banners and red Southcoast jackets with first aid crosses printed on the back. Rows of medical volunteers were ready with words of congratulations, bags of ice, and whatever medical services needed. If it wasn’t the first aid that was making the runners feel better, it could have been the frontline team’s enthusiasm and support at the finish line.

Though the St. Luke’s Emergency Department team makes it look easy, organizing first aid services starts months in advance and requires regular communication with the Marathon Committee and local first responders. This year was particularly meaningful because the race had not been held in two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the break, the team did not miss a beat and was at the ready for any and all medical services. It was a lively, high-spirited event, and the St. Luke’s Emergency Department team represented the mission of Southcoast Health by providing care in the community.

Volunteerism at Southcoast Health is part of Southcoast Cares Community Engagement and Impact initiatives. For more information about Southcoast Cares initiatives and volunteerism, please visit