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Topic ClosedMedical cover at games

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Allan Foster View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Medical cover at games
    Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 11:37
Fylde have tried a few times over the last 15 years to persuade the NCA that it should strengthen the requirement for a doctor to be present at National League games. The reply has always been along the lines of "some clubs would find it very difficult to provide this."

The current requirement is for "an appropriately qualified medical practitioner or an appropriately qualified physiotherapist, sports therapist, or sports rehabilitator" to be present.

Is that good enough at levels 3 & 4 of our sport? My attention was drawn to this in Wharfedale's match programme on Saturday when they referred to the delays at Coventry 10 days ago in dealing with the two seriously injured players that day, Luke Myring and Chris Steel.

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covmick View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 12:18
Coventry do have a club doctor. The ground staff where very quick to act for both injuries. The Coventry club also have a defibrillator available for use by trained staff.
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Sedge Tiger View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 12:36

Sedge has a club Doctor present at all first XV games,

 

This is supported by a qualified physiotherapist/ sports therapist on hand too.

 

We have a fully equipped medical room complete with defibrillator to be used by trained staff.

 

Allan your point is a very good one as on an occasion last year away from home we had to provide our own doctor to administer stiches to one of our players as there was no provision by the home club.

 

I think the current levels and requirement from clubs are at best ambiguous and can be left to wide interpretation.

 

The real answer to that question though is when bad injuries occur it’s far too late to find out then that you have come up short.

 

I have to say the medical care at Blackheath is very good indeed. Thank God we don’t have to put these provisions to a higher test each week.

 

All the best

 

ST



Edited by Sedge Tiger - 19 Dec 2011 at 12:43
Give him one with handles on
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Allan Foster View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 13:44
Originally posted by covmick covmick wrote:

Coventry do have a club doctor. The ground staff where very quick to act for both injuries. The Coventry club also have a defibrillator available for use by trained staff.


Good to hear that Covmick. I would have expected nothing less from such a well established club. I was only quoting from Wharfe's match programme (p24):

"The game was held up for ages - would it have been different if Coventry had had a doctor present?"


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 16:29
Allan, I agree with you completely. It is indeed encouraging to hear that despite no actual requirements being in force, many clubs see the value of having adequate medical cover.

No level is safe from serious injury and early appropriate intervention can make a significant difference to outcome.

I went to the Cinderford game this week and there was no doctor cover there. Whilst I had every intention of going simply as a spectator, the team asked me to cover in case suturing was required. With small benches, it seems a little unfair on teams to expect them to use the bench prematurely when a player needs to go to hospital for straight forward treatment, as most physios do not put stiches in.

Appropriate training (RFU Pitchside Trauma Course) is excellent and should be well within most clubs budget.
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OldNick View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 16:32
The reason for both delays was the time taken after the stretcher was at the player by the trained medical staff present in getting the injured player onto the stretcher, and removing them from the pitch.

If Wharfedale had preferred that their player with a broken leg had just been dragged off the pitch I am sure it could have been arranged.

Thanks for passing on the information fromt he programme Allan - I'll make sure it reaches suitable management at Coventry so that they are aware of the insinuation being made. Frankly I am disgusted by it.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 18:03
Here in our eight-team Greek championship the game cannot start unless a doctor is present

Edited by barkingmad - 19 Dec 2011 at 18:03
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 18:45
I expect the original comments in the programme were made by someone with little 'medical' knowledge and that the time taken was required to deal effectively with the injuries. Thus it is wrong that these comments were ever made.

As yet I have not attended a National 1 away game this year or last that didn't have a doctor present for the game. However, just because a doctor is present this does not automatically mean you have adequate medical care. They require specific trauma training or experience such as the rfu PSITCC or equivalent or a A&E/ortho. A GP is not sufficient and quite possibly a hindrance for a well trained/experienced Chartered Physiotherapist.

of the top of my head and IMHO - A minimum equipment & Staff level requirement for a club at any level should be the following;

Staff - RFU PSITCC or equivalent training (RFU course is very good but also expensive and other training with the same content is significantly cheaper)

Emergency 1st aid - Life saving equipment;
C-spine colar and spinal board
AED (look up sudden cardia arrest)
Oxygen
Trauma pack
Mobile phone with address of club to phone 999
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2011 at 21:49
Old Nick - I think you will find there's usually no shortage of "comment" in the Wharfe programme
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2011 at 11:53

Hang on, OldNick, rein in your disgust! A grasp of the facts might be useful and the subject of the editors ire here is certainly not CRFC but NCA regulations.  Dont allow this misinterpretaion to sully the excellent relationship between our two clubs.

 

Fact One

. There was no doctor present, How de we know? Because your Fourth Official told the Wharfedale coach as they were walking out to the pitch, and it was later confirmed by the Wharfedale physio and the injured player himself.

Fact Two

. The Wharfedale programme addressed the point, but wasn't at all critical of Coventry for not having a doctor, but if anything of the NCA regulations which don't require a doctor be present. Here is what the programme said, verbatim: "Steely’s wasn’t the only bad injury at Coventry last week: the Coventry centre and captain was stretchered off early in the match with a suspected broken ankle. The game was held up by both incidents for ages – would it have been different if Coventry had had a doctor present?"

The NCA regulation is that each Club must provide an appropriately qualified medical practitioner or an appropriately qualified physiotherapist, sports therapist, or sports rehabilitator throughout the Match – but is this enough?"

 

I see no "insinuation"!  Only the usual problem of the written word whether by email, text or print sometimes leading to misunderstanding. 

 

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2011 at 14:27
Hillman - I am not sure that even a doctor can fix a broken ankle so the player can carry on!! I must admit that I am very surprised that any team plays in this league with out suitable medical cover - and I agree that a well meaning GP with no extra training is not sufficient - and would probably not be covered by his defence union. The Pitch Side Trauma Course run by the RFU is very good, and yes it is expensive. Worth looking at this -  www.IRBPassport.com .
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2011 at 15:33
I see no "insinuation"!  Only the usual problem of the written word whether by email, text or print sometimes leading to misunderstanding
 
 
Entirely agree - to me the programme notes read " there was an undue delay in attending to the injuries at Coventry due to the lack of a doctor being provided by the host club.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 09:48
I think it may be worth considering how hard the reality of providing a match day / club doctor every other weekend actually is. 1) The training RFU PSITCC is £600 followed by a further £400 a year later. This then starts all over again after 2 years. If you put 1 Physiotherapist through this per season then thats £2000 extra you have to find. 2) Commitment - how easy is it to find a suitably qualified doctor who is willing or able to give up every other Saturday? The chances are if they are suitable for the job then they have A&E of trauma clinics to cover in there normal jobs 3) Wages - is it expected that these doctors do it for free? What do you think the normal hourly rate would be?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 10:07
I think that there are limiting factors which make it difficult to lave regulations to force clubs to have doctors present:
  1. If the doctor cannot make the game or is called away on an emergency will the game have to be cancelled or abandoned?
  2. If you have a rule , which I assume would be on "Health and Safety" requirements why only NCA clubs surely it would also have to apply to all levels of rugby as a 4th XV player would be just as important as any 1st XV national league player. This would make it impossible to run the game.
  3. If a club could not get doctors to attend in a voluntary basis whold they be barred from entering a specific league?
  4. Would the RFU cover the cost of providing a doctor and would there be enough doctors to go round?

I could see a lot of litigation if any injury was treated incorrectly by a pitch side doctor who would cover the cost of insurance the current RFU insurance certainly would not.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 11:01

In an ideal world, every club would have 2 doctors who are both PSITCC accredited and also 2 phyios who have had the same training, on the basis that no single doctor or physio will be available to attend all 15 home matches for a team each season. This would then ensure that each home match is fully covered.

The reality is that the PSITCC course run by the RFU, which is the gold standard qualification, takes 3 days to complete initially and is expensive and mentally challenging!  The standard set by the RFU is very high, I think, having been through it.

As Big Stan says, this is potentially a huge cost to clubs, as well as all the equipment that is required in order to provide a full pitchside medical service. To respond to Allan Foster’s opening comments at the top of this thread, I don’t think that it is feasible in the present financial climate for the RFU to issue and edict that all clubs in National 1 must provide this level of medical/physio care.

At Blackheath, both doctors involved are volunteers. Both 1st team physios and one of the doctors are PSITCC accredited. Thanks to Sedge Tiger for the compliment earlier.

Any time a player has a serious ankle injury, or a head or neck injury, it’s going to take 10-15 minutes, possibly longer if the injury is really serious, to get the player sorted out on the pitch and spinal boarded or stretchered off to the medical room.  On these occasions, the welfare of the injured player is paramount and I’m sure no-one would want this to be done hastily.

Overall, I’m happy with the level of care provided across National 1 for injured players and I don't think that any imposed rules would be helpful.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 11:48
Originally posted by N W Watcher N W Watcher wrote:

I see no "insinuation"!  Only the usual problem of the written word whether by email, text or print sometimes leading to misunderstanding
 
 
Entirely agree - to me the programme notes read " there was an undue delay in attending to the injuries at Coventry due to the lack of a doctor being provided by the host club.


And that is the cause of my annoyance. The wording was either careless in being capable of being read that way, or deliberately insinuating that Coventry provided unsatisfactory medical support.

First of all there was no undue delay. There was a delay which the properly qualified staff present considered was necessary in order to protect and properly move the injured players.

Secondly the lack of a doctor, which I do not dispute, had no impact on the time taken over the tasks.

For reference, the ankle injury suffered by the Coventry captain tutrned out to be a dislocated ancle with ligament damage rather than a break. The hospital was not able to determine this for quite some time until the swelling had been reduced.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 14:33
Originally posted by Clubman Clubman wrote:

In an ideal world, every club would have 2 doctors who are both PSITCC accredited and also 2 phyios who have had the same training, on the basis that no single doctor or physio will be available to attend all 15 home matches for a team each season. This would then ensure that each home match is fully covered.

The reality is that the PSITCC course run by the RFU, which is the gold standard qualification, takes 3 days to complete initially and is expensive and mentally challenging!  The standard set by the RFU is very high, I think, having been through it.

As Big Stan says, this is potentially a huge cost to clubs, as well as all the equipment that is required in order to provide a full pitchside medical service. To respond to Allan Foster’s opening comments at the top of this thread, I don’t think that it is feasible in the present financial climate for the RFU to issue and edict that all clubs in National 1 must provide this level of medical/physio care.

At Blackheath, both doctors involved are volunteers. Both 1st team physios and one of the doctors are PSITCC accredited. Thanks to Sedge Tiger for the compliment earlier.

Any time a player has a serious ankle injury, or a head or neck injury, it’s going to take 10-15 minutes, possibly longer if the injury is really serious, to get the player sorted out on the pitch and spinal boarded or stretchered off to the medical room.  On these occasions, the welfare of the injured player is paramount and I’m sure no-one would want this to be done hastily.

Overall, I’m happy with the level of care provided across National 1 for injured players and I don't think that any imposed rules would be helpful.

 
Clubman
 
Thank you for explaining and considering the various issues that face all Clubs at Level 3 and 4 in respect of Medical cover.
 
Your reply was a fair review of the earlier comments and I have to say that I was grateful for your input.
 
Hopefully this will now put the matter to one side as your additional views as a medical man on the cover you have seen at National 1 was comforting.
 
We cannot relax on this subject and must keep monitoring the situation but I do agree that it would be unfair to "force" Clubs to go through the expensive processes to achiveve PSITCC standards.  This may ultimately become the standard if the Clubs at Level 3 & 4 wish to be thought of as professional and as they are at the pinacle of the Community (there goes that awful word again) Game this should be in their stride as the standards of Rugby increase.
 
Compliments of the season (Christmas and New Year) to you all. Wink
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2011 at 15:23
"Your reply was a fair review of the earlier comments and I have to say that I was grateful for your input.
Hopefully this will now put the matter to one side as your additional views as a medical man on the cover you have seen at National 1 was comforting."
Good to see your support for Rolling Maul contributions, OFP. Hardly a "moan" around these days, our pantomine villains, the Twickenham villagers now the hiss boos of yesteryear. As to the NCA - getting better I must say.
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