We have sent some information out previously regarding concussion. This is is the latest updated advice we have received from the AFL. The full PDF is available for download here. Below is just a summary of the main points to consider and does not replace any of the information contained within the AFL’s document.
In early stages of an injury it is often not clear whether you are dealing with concussion or a more severe head injury. For this reason it is important that the following guidelines are followed to allow for identification and prevention of further injury.
- Recognising a suspected concussion
- Removing the player from the field or training
- Referring the player to a medical doctor for assessment
Recognising a suspected concussion
Everyone watching the game or training can report a suspected knock to the coach/official. This includes. Players, Umpires, Coaches, Managers, Runners, and Parents. Anyone who is watching the game and observed an incident on the field needs to alert the Coaches and Officials. The coach/official can have this player removed from the field and referred for assessment to the appropriate first aid.
Assessing a player for Concussion
The AFL-approved concussion management app HeadCheck (www.headcheck.com.au) should be utilised to recognise and assist in the management of any suspected concussion for both adults and children. In addition if there are medical staff on the sideline the player should be referred to them for immediate assessment of their condition. In the case of training days, where medical staff may not be present, the parent/carer should take the child for assessment by their GP or local Accident / Emergency departments at the nearest hospital.
What happens next?
If the player has been assessed as having concussion, they must follow the recovery steps outlined in the AFL’s document above. The key milestones for returning to play include days of rest and absence from school, completion of a graded loading program, clearance from a medical doctor, and importantly the earliest they can return is on the 12th day after they received the initial concussion.
Remember it’s up to all of us to ensure the safety of our children when playing, If you have any questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to ask your coach or team manager. Go the Cats!
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