Leading Rugby physicians and administrators will meet in London next month to participate in the inaugural International Rugby Board Medical Conference.
A key element of the IRB's Medical Strategic Plan, the annual conference will be held on November 12-13 and will focus on the central theme of putting players first. The Conference is designed to provide delegates with a think-tank environment to consider global research, development and opinion and drive player welfare best-practice.
Strategies in the fight against doping, concussion diagnosis and assessment, the physicality of the Game, catastrophic injuries, advances in Women's Rugby, the prevention of sudden cardiac death through pre-competition medical assessments as well as player burnout will be among the key topics of discussion.
The group will also consider the latest data from elite performance research and injury surveys undertaken across international and domestic Rugby recent of years by the IRB and its Member Unions.
"The IRB takes the critical area of player welfare extremely seriously and works tirelessly with all 116 Member Unions and key stakeholders to drive extensive global research in order to ensure the continued development of best possible practice for playing, coaching and officiating the Game," said IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset.
"The IRB's Medical Strategic Plan has at its core player welfare. The Srategic Plan will be driven forward by the IRB's Training and Medical Manager Mark Harrington and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Mick Molloy."
"The aim of this ground-breaking conference is to widen the medical discussion amongst Rugby's medical practitioners. The group is highly experienced in the field of Rugby medicine and we are also pleased to have some of the world's foremost experts on injury prevention and management in attendance."
"It is important that we consider the latest research and opinions relating to injury prevention to ensure that we focus our ongoing research in the correct areas. It is also important that Rugby continues to play a leading role in the fight against doping and the promotion of a healthy lifestyle," added Lapasset.
Practical workshops will reinforce the focus of the meeting, concentrating on: concussion assessment, anti-doping, cervical spinal cord injuries, the physicality of the Game, future directions for Sports Science in Rugby, Women's Rugby, Asthma and Local Anesthetic administration.
While the Conference is not a decision-making forum, any conclusions will be put forward to the IRB Executive Committee for consideration.
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