On Jan. 27, USA Karate Arizona ASO President/Sensei Ray Hughes honored four A.T. Still University-Arizona School of Health Sciences (ATSU-ASHS) physician assistant (PA) faculty for their “outstanding volunteerism and vital work in assuring competent medical services at karate tournaments and the State USA Olympic National Qualifier.”
ATSU-ASHS Dean Randy Danielsen, PhD, PA-C emeritus, serves as the medical advisor and medical director for USA Karate and AZ Karate. He is assisted by Gerry Keenan, MMS, PA-C, PA faculty; Sherron Cook, PA ’08, PA adjunct faculty; and Jesse Thompson, NREMT, PA adjunct faculty.
Gathered at the Hilton Resort in Scottsdale, Hughes spoke to the crowd of competitors and supporters from all over Arizona for their annual competition Points Awards Night. Each honoree received a plaque inscribed: “Trust is required to put the safety of the ones you care most for into the hands of others. We trust you!”
Hughes noted, “PA Cook has been a consistent faculty preceptor since 2013 and is the primary person that provides the mentorship for the various American Indian high school and college students that come to the various tournaments as pre-professional observers. She has been an active voice in advocating for the medical team in defining the needs and scope of activities.”
“Adjunct PA faculty and EMT, Jesse Thompson, has been a stalwart and active supporter of the medical team and volunteer since 2013, even before he became ATSU faculty and serves as the team operations manager. He quite frankly is indispensable in the team leadership and in the nuts and bolts of running the team and interfacing with volunteers.”
The community medical services team is an interdisciplinary activity open to all ATSU faculty, students, and staff. Interdisciplinary student teams are stationed mat-side for nearly instant response to injury or illness and at a unique treatment station strategically placed in the competition arena.
Hughes acknowledged that Arizona is leading the way in its unique approach to the sport of karate and its tournaments, the organization as a whole, but particularly its medical care.
“ATSU is a standout nationally for the level of services provided to AZ ASO Karate athletes and their care during tournaments. We are fortunate to have them as a partner in our service to youth and adults in Arizona.”