Doctors build 'safe playground' in SF

March 4, 2008 2:59:17 PM PST
A very special playground is taking shape right now in San Francisco's Balboa Park neighborhood. It's designed for disabled and non-disabled kids alike, with input from orthopedic surgeons.

They started building the park this morning and will be finished by the end of this afternoon.

This is park is not only being designed by orthopedic surgeons, but also being built by them. Nearly half of the 500 people building this park are orthopedic surgeons. They met earlier this morning at a convention in San Francisco and started building it at 8:00 a.m. and will be finished with the park by 3:30pm.

It's as safe of a playground that you are ever going to find. It comes equipped with rubberized surfaces, wheelchair access, and a separate lot for smaller children and larger area for older kids. It's designed to keep the youngsters in the park and out of the doctor's office.

"Over 500,000 children a year are injured on playgrounds and we as orthopedic surgeons are often the people on the front lines treating those patients and building a safe and accessible playground gives us an opportunity to prevent these injuries rather than just treat them," says Kevin Bozic M.D., UCSF Medical Center.

The 3,000 square foot park will have been completed in 7 hours. This is the third time that the orthopedic surgeons have met and the third park they have built -- one at Coyote Point in San Mateo and another at Alvarado Elementary School in San Francisco. Wherever they have their conventions is where they build these 'safe playgrounds'.