Concussion is a significant injury that can impact an athlete in many ways beyond their sport experience. As recently highlighted at the Governor General’s Conference on Concussion in Sport, we can and must do better. Prevention is the key as there is no cure for this injury. Sport organizations have a duty of care to protect their participants, but what does that mean when it comes to concussion? Concussion policy development is challenging in a sport environment, but it doesn’t have to be a headache. An effective concussion policy is an important element of quality sport programming. Not only can it reduce the risk of concussion to athletes but also helps to promote healthier return to practice and performance. There is no “gold standard” policy that is appropriate to apply across the different sports and levels of competition. However, there are 5 key elements that, when included in a policy, are known to be effective in reducing injury risk and support healthy return to play. This presentation will review the rationale for developing a comprehensive approach and the internationally consistent and evidence-based components that should be included in every sport organization’s concussion policy. Additionally, the presentation will include a checklist, based on the 5 key elements, for session attendees to evaluate their organization’s policy or use to develop one.
Concurrent Session 2D – Pathway to Safety and Risk Management: Approaches to Creating a Safe Environment
This session will highlight some key initiatives that are important in meeting the standards expected of sport governing bodies by parents, players and society in general. With the implementation of these initiatives also come challenges and the session will identify some of these challenges discussing ways that they can be mitigated. Finally the session will investigate some new approaches to managing risk within sport.