Welsh Rugby develops pitchside care

The Welsh Rugby Union has put player welfare at the top of the agenda with a new training initiative to improve pitchside medical care for elite players.

The ‘WRU Immediate Care in Rugby’ (WRU ICIR) course has been introduced to provide the highest level of pitchside training for doctors and physiotherapists working in Welsh rugby.

Delivered by the WRU’s National Medical Performance Manager, the annual course is aimed at regional and national medical teams and tackles the immediate care needs of professional players.

The initiative has been fully funded by the Union and will ensure that medical teams across all Wales’ national teams, Cardiff Blues, Newport Gwent Dragons, Ospreys and Scarlets share the same level of training.

WRU National Medical Performance Manager, Prav Mathema, launched the annual training event which kicked-off with a series of interactive sessions at the Millennium Stadium this week. He said: “The WRU Immediate Care in Rugby course is essential training for delivering the highest level of pitch side care to professional players in Wales. It has been developed with the financial support of the WRU and could never have been implemented without this investment.”

The opening course which integrated regional and national personnel was delivered in conjunction with WRU ICIR Programme Director Andy Smith and with the support of Head of Sports Medicine of the RFU Simon Kemp.

“We are very fortunate that such an experienced Programme Director has been recruited to aid us in our training development. Andy is regarded as a global subject expert in the field of pre-hospital trauma management in the sports setting and his expertise has been invaluable in developing our course.

“We’ve also received fantastic support and endorsement by the medical personnel throughout Welsh Rugby and this has been a defining reason for the successful delivery of the training'

WRU Head of Rugby Joe Lydon said: “The medical performance teams at national and regional level perform such an important role and I’m delighted that we’re able provide such a high level of rugby related training for those doctors andphysiotherapiststhat ensure our players receive the best quality of pitchside care week-in, week-out.”

The WRU ICIR is just one of the many areas highlighted during the 2010 medical review conducted by the WRU.

Mr Lydon added: "It’s important we continue to implement the recommendations of the 2010 medical review aimed at raising and supporting the medical standards within Welsh Rugby.”

For further information and pictures, please contact Gemma James, WRU Press Office, 02920822368 or 07725828498 and email gjames@wru.co.uk


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