This policy has been prepared to assist Coaches and Managers deal with situations of (suspected) concussion whether they occur at training or matches.
It recognises that:
- As of July 2014, Hockey Victoria does not have a concussion policy.
- TEM does not have the depth of trained medical support staff, e.g. doctors, physiotherapists, that are available to professional or other elite level sporting teams. However, this does not reduce potential for concussion to occur.
- TEM does not have the depth of resources to undertake concussion baseline testing.
- The decisions made by coaches and managers with respect to cases of suspected concussion will in all likelihood be made without any input from a medical professional. Typically advice from a medical professional will only be available in the fortuitous event that a professional happens to be a participant or spectator at the event.
TEM will adopt a conservative approach to cases of actual or suspected potential concussion. As a result:
- If somebody suffers a collision or a blow to the head, and shows signs or symptoms of concussion they must not be allowed to return to the match/training session.
In trying to form a view as to whether the player has concussion, the attached guide from the BMJ (British Medical Journal) can be used as a reference.
If there is any doubt as to whether somebody is suffering from concussion, they must not be allowed to return to the match/training session.
In the event that the parent/partner of the player believes that the player should not return to the match/training session then the player must not be allowed to return to the match/training session (even if the coach/manager/player concerned believes that the player is fit to return).
- The player should be encouraged and assisted to have a proper medical assessment of their condition, as soon as practicable after the incident concerned, and before they return to play/train.
- The player should not be allowed to drive themselves home from the event.
- The decision as to whether the player is fit to participate in subsequent matches/training sessions lies with the player and their medical advisors. This decision cannot be made by the Club.
- TEM will seek to ensure that all coaches and managers are supplied with a copy of this policy and that the policy be available to all members.