Medical Branch

ESD’s Medical Branch provides first-aid assistance to the 75,000+ citizens of Black Rock City. We have three medical stations situated around the city and mobile units responding to calls in the field. Higher level care is available on playa at Rampart, our MASH-style hospital staffed with Nevada-licensed providers.

Working in the Stations

Our medical stations are located 3:00/C, 9:00/C, and 5:15/Esplanade. This is where our volunteers with a clinical background, such as doctors (MD, DO), advanced practice providers (NP or PA), and nurses (LPN or RN), are best suited. We also staff non-medical folks who assist with a variety of tasks to keep the stations flowing smoothly. The med stations are equipped with basic medical supplies and quiet air-conditioned spaces to treat the minor illnesses and injuries occurring on playa.

Field Response

Requests for assistance outside our med stations are handled by one of our four Quick Response Vehicles (QRVs). Volunteers working on QRVs have a background in pre-hospital care, such as EMTs and flight nurses. QRVs can either treat and release, or assist the patient to receive higher level care at one of our med stations or Rampart.

Rapid Intervention Teams (RITs)

A RIT is comprised of two medical volunteers – one with a clinical background and one with pre-hospital experience. RITs are deployed around the perimeter of large burn events, and are dispatched to assist participants in the crowd requiring medical assistance.

Sanctuary Medic

Sanctuary is run by specially trained Black Rock Rangers to support participants who are emotionally overwhelmed and need a quiet space to recuperate. The Sanctuary Medic is an ESD clinical volunteer available in the Sanctuary dome to medically clear participants seeking respite in Sanctuary as needed.

Thunderdome Medics

Similar to RITs, the team stationed at Thunderdome during their hours of operation consists of one clinical and one pre-hospital volunteer. They’re available to render first-aid to participants injured in the Thunderdome, or to radio for patient transport to Rampart as needed.

Bravo Medics

Bravo Unit shifts are staffed with a combination of one clinical and two pre-hospital volunteers. They, along with Andrew (a vehicle that looks like an ambulance, but is actually a mobile stationary first-aid station), are deployed to large gatherings in deep playa to assist participants with minor medical complaints or radio for transfer to higher level care as needed.

Ready to join our team? Fill out the Volunteer Questionnaire and we’ll be in touch!