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Injury Reporting

So that the RFU can take an active role aiding in the care and rehabilitation of catastrophically injured players, it is vital that the RFU is notified of all injuries that qualify in the reportable category set out below using the following Injury Report Form.

For more information and support about how a club should deal with a serious injury, the following document provides guidance for clubs on managing serious injuries.

In order to simplify the reporting process and ensure that the injury data that is collated is valid, clubs and schools need only report the following Reportable Injury Events. Wider ranging detailed injury surveillance data will be collected independently from a representative sample of nominated clubs and schools. 

Reportable Injury Events

These are defined as:

• An injury which results in the player being admitted to a hospital (this does not include those that attend an Accident or Emergency Department and are allowed home from there).

• Deaths which occur during or within 6 hours of a game finishing.

Clubs and schools are also required to report injuries in which artificial grass pitches or equipment such as sports goggles are involved.

Reportable Injury Event Protocol – In the event of a serious injury occurring, which fulfils one of the above definitions, after providing immediate first aid and arranging transport by ambulance to hospital, the following protocol is to be followed:

  1. A club or school representative must phone the Sports Injuries Administrator Helpline 0800 298 0102, as soon as the seriousness of the player’s condition is confirmed and certainly within 48 hours of the game or training session.

  2. Please have a pen and paper ready, and the details of the incident to provide. Out of working hours there will be a recorded message that provides contact details of the Injured Player Welfare Officer (IPWO). The IPWO will only respond out of hours in the event of a potentially catastrophic injury or fatality. You will be asked to complete and return an injury report form:

  3. The IPWO will then establish contact with the club and player or their family in order to confirm the injury, initiate the Pastoral Support Programme, and collect additional information about the injury

  4. The club/school must notify their insurers.

  5. Record witness statements. Where a potential insurance or personal injury claim may arise, clubs and schools are advised to retain on file witness statements. These statements must confine themselves to the facts and not include opinion or hearsay, or apportion or infer blame. They must be signed and dated by the person making them.

Reportable Injury Events – Referee Reports

Following a reportable injury, the referee should also complete Referee Injury Event Form. More information for referees following a reportable incident and details on how to complete the form can be found the below:

Recording Keeping

The RFU recommend that all clubs, schools and organisations that run rugby activity keep a record any incidents both on and off the pitch. On the pitch it is good practice to provide first aiders with a book in which to record incidents that required their attendance. The information kept can help identify injury and incident trends and possible areas for improvement in the control of health and safety risks. It can also be used for reference in future risk assessments. This record book is not the same as the statutory accident book required under the H&SAW Regulations, though the two can be combined.

Useful information to record will include:

  • Date, time and place of incident;

  • Name and job of the injured or ill person;

  • Details of the injury/illness and what first aid was given;

  • What happened to the person immediately afterwards (for example went home, went back to work, went to hospital)

  • Name and signature of the first aider or person dealing with the incident.

First aiders or the appointed person  would  usually be responsible for the  book. However, clubs retain overall responsibility for ensuring that records are maintained.

If there is any suggestion that the injury is not an accident, records should be kept in case a claim is ever brought against the club or a coach or referee. In most cases records should be kept for three years, but if the injury is to a child they should be kept for 15 years.

Certain clubs with employees will be subject to the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 1995. For those there is a legal requirement to report accidents and ill health at work. Information on this is given by the HSE.

Useful Contacts:

Sports Injuries Administrator (SIA): Rugby House, Twickenham Stadium, 200 Whitton Road, Twickenham, TW2 7BA Tel: 0800 298 0102 Email:

The IPF provide support and information to rugby players in England who sustain a serious and catastrophic injury.

They also help prevent future injuries through research and education. For more information go the IPF website.

RFU IPF – Injured Player Welfare Officer: Dean Holder Tel: 07894 489 716 email:

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