A Harvard freshman struck by a falling goalpost after Saturday's football game remains in critical condition at a New Haven hospital, but her physicians "are hopeful about her condition," a hospital spokesman said yesterday afternoon.
Margaret M. Cimino '87 is semi-conscious--able to respond to requests to lift a finger--said spokesman Kelly Anthony of Yale-affiliated St. Raphael's Hospital.
"But she can't communicate like you or I," he added.
Cimino remains in the hospital's intensive surgical care unit, breathing with the help of a respirator.
Anthony said it is still "too early to tell what permanent damage she sustained."
The neurosurgeons observing Cimino have not yet made a diagnosis, Anthony explained. They have not determined whether she will require surgery, and cannot be sure when they will know, he added.
Several surgeons are currently working on Cimino's case, many of them Yale Medical School professors. "These surgeons are the finest she can get," said Anthony.
"The hospital has received hundreds of calls from concerned Yale and Harvard students," Anthony said. "There has been a tremendous outpouring of care."
Neither Cimino's parents nor her roommates could be reached for comment yesterday.
Yale University officials will complete a report of the incident this week, Yale Athletic Director Frank B. Ryan said yesterday.
The report will be reviewed by Yale President A. Bartlett Giamatti, Ryan added.
He said the incident will cause the university to completely reassess its game-time stadium security.
In a meeting of the Committee on Student Life, Dean of the College John B. Fox Jr. '59 said the issue will be investigated by athletic directors throughout the league.
Fox said he will bring up the issue at a meeting of Ivy League athletic directors next week.
Dean of Students Archie C. Epps III, who also serves on the committee, said that several suggestions were made for precautions which might prevent another such incident.
Suggestions included use of wooden goal-posts, increased police security, and loudspeaker warnings.
Epps pointed out that increased security might only create conflict between students and police, and predicted that it would probably be ineffective. "A large police force, faced with 300 to 500 fans coming out of the stands, would have trouble trying to stop them," added Harvard Director of Athletics John P. Reardon '60.
Reardon said that wooden goalposts were no more safe than metal ones, explaining that he had witnessed a death caused by a falling wooden goalpost.
Epps said announcements over the stadium loudspeaker deterred fans from rushing on the field at half-time, but did not know whether they had been used since.