English rugby’s three main stakeholders, Premiership Rugby, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and the Rugby Players’ Association (RPA) have today announced that all professional players, coaches and referees have completed this season’s mandatory online concussion education module within the required five-week window for the second successive year.
The joint initiative, which was first launched in October 2014, explains what concussion is, how to recognise its symptoms, on and off the field, and how it feels when a player has experienced a concussion.
The world-leading education programme informs participants of the short, medium and long-term consequences of the condition and the protocols that have been put in place to ensure a safe return to play. The interactive module tests an individual’s knowledge throughout with a selection of questions asked on each subject area.
More than 1,600 people who completed the module included all contracted Premiership Rugby and Championship players, contracted England Sevens players and all Premiership Rugby, Championship and England representative team coaches. In the women’s game, England representative players over the age of 18 (which also covered England U20, Elite Performance Squad and Sevens players) also completed the course. All Premiership Rugby and Championship referees also completed the module.
Richard Bryan, RPA Rugby Director said: "Delivering the online concussion education module for the second year running demonstrates the fundamental importance placed upon concussion education by the RPA, RFU and Premiership Rugby. We would like to thank all participants for buying into the fundamental importance of this module and demonstrating a cultural shift in attitudes towards concussion."
Simon Kemp, Chief Medical Officer, RFU said: "Educating players, referees and non-medical staff about concussion is critically important and it is satisfying to see for the second season running that everyone required to complete the online module has done so. This emphasises how seriously the professional game in England takes the issue."
Corin Palmer, Head of Rugby Operations at Premiership Rugby said: "Player welfare is Premiership Rugby's number one priority and changing rugby culture through education and raised awareness about concussion is paramount.
"The fact that 100% of all stakeholders in the professional game have completed the concussion education module for a second season running demonstrates our commitment to understand and appreciate the complexities surrounding the topic.
"Premiership Rugby would, on behalf of its clubs, like to thank all players, coaches and support staff for their efforts and diligence in reaching this milestone yet again."