Sports: Injuries

Department for Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 5th April 2017.

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Photo of Chris Evans Chris Evans Labour/Co-operative, Islwyn

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what advice her Department provides to (a) national governing bodies and (b) medical services on concussion sustained in sporting activities.

Photo of Chris Evans Chris Evans Labour/Co-operative, Islwyn

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what research her Department has undertaken into the occurrence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy in professional athletes.

Photo of Chris Evans Chris Evans Labour/Co-operative, Islwyn

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many cases of chronic traumatic encephalopathy have been reported by (a) sports national governing bodies and (b) national medical services in the last five years.

Photo of Tracey Crouch Tracey Crouch The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

The Government takes player safety seriously in all sports. I expect National Governing Bodies, as the designated authorities with responsibility to regulate their sport, to monitor and act upon player safety as their highest priority, and be able to demonstrate how they are complying with all the relevant health and safety regulations and practices.

The department does not provide advice to medical services on concussion or on the comparative health risks resulting from taking part in major sports.

Medical research into injuries sustained in certain sports is being carried out by staff at the English Institute of Sport, and work in this area is to be published in the near future. However, this will not focus specifically on chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

National Governing Bodies with significant risk of this type of injury in their sport put appropriate plans in place, issue guidance across their membership such as recent RFU and FA publications, and set elite level protocols, as the designated authorities with responsibility to regulate their sport.

In addition, the department is a member of the Sport and Recreation Alliance’s Forum on Concussion which aims to raise awareness and support professionals, students, parents and volunteers to be able to deal better with incidents of concussion.

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