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WBSC Concussion Management Policy

Western Branch Soccer Club Concussion Management Policy

Effective August 31, 2015


The Concussion Management Policy (the “CMP”) of Western Branch Soccer Club (“WBSC”) implements a standard operating procedure for the managing and monitoring concussion injuries of WBSC players.  A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury that occurs when a bump, blow or jolt to the head or body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth.  It is followed by a change in behavior or performance.


The CMP is effective as of the adoption date and beginning in the Fall season of 2015/2016 seasonal year.


The CMP was developed with the following factors in mind:


1.     A reduction of risk for WBSC players.

Concussions are a real medical risk in youth sports. Increased education will help to ensure that when concussions occur in an WBSC game or training setting, they will be managed in a standard process.  At the same time, there is a great deal of misinformation regarding head injuries and concussions.  Without proper education and policy, the risks associated with concussions increase.


2.     Increased public awareness of concussions in youth soccer and youth sports.

By educating our coaches, staff, and membership more generally about concussions WBSC aims to both reduce the risks to our players and to increase public awareness and sensitivity to the symptoms and proper treatment of concussion policy.


The goals of the CMP are to:


1.     Protect our players.

2.     Educate our coaches and staff.

3.     Educate our parents and identify resources parents can use to educate themselves and their children/players on concussion identification, treatment, and prevention.

4.     Develop a policy and protocol that is consistent with the law in the State of Virginia.


The CMP has four parts: Education, Head Impact Protocol, Verification, and Return to Play,


Part 1 – Education


·       WBSC will hold a coaches educational seminar (in one or several sessions) each year on injury recognition and return to play protocol with a target date for the seminar at the start of the fall season.


·       It will be mandatory for all competitive coaches, Directors of Coaching and technical staff to attend the seminar. Any exceptions to attendance shall be approved by the WBSC President.


·       All Select and Advance Coaches, Assistant Coaches, Directors of Coaching, Technical Staff and select team managers shall download the Concussion Recognition & Response (CCR) phone application for on site evaluation of head impacts and familiarize themselves with the Centers for Disease Controls & Prevention (CDC) educational materials, in particular the CDC Concussion Symptoms Checklist.


·       All Select and Advance Coaches, Assistant Coaches, Directors of Coaching and Technical staff are required to complete the Heads Up Online Concussions Course available on the  and WBSC Concussion Resources page on and submit the certificate of completion to the WBSC President.


·       A select coach and/or select team manager on each WBSC team will review the WBSC concussion policy at a parent meeting and provide team parents with the links referenced above.


·       Select players and Parent/Guardian are required to sign and return CDC Parent and Athlete Concussion Information Sheet prior to the player being rostered and passed for the season. This will be part of the electronic registration process. The CDC Parent and Athlete Concussion Information Sheet is also available for download on the Concussion Resources page of the WBSC website.


·       WBSC will provide via website, email, registration systems, team distributions, workshops or parent meeting educational information to parents. WBSCrecommends all parents install the Concussion Recognition & Response (CRR) phone application on their personal smart phones and familiarize themselves with the CDC Concussion Symptoms Checklist.


·       WBSC Advance and Recreational coaches will be provided CDC Concussion Symptoms Checklist and other CDC Concussion documents in their coaches packets. 


Part 2 – Head Impact Protocol & Verification


·       In the event a WBSC player sustains a suspected head impact or concerning injury he or she will be removed from the activity immediately.  This includes but not exclusively limited to games, training sessions, skill sessions, other on-field activities.


·       The player shall be evaluated by a coach/team manager utilizing the CRR phone evaluation or CDC Concussion Symptoms checklist to evaluate the player in the absence of a qualified licensed health care professional. A player removed from the field of play for evaluation after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body shall be kept out of play the day of the injury unless cleared by a Health Care Provider. Signs and symptoms of concussion can show up right away after the injury or may not appear or be noticed until days or weeks after the injury.


·       When the player exhibits one or more of the symptoms of concussion after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body, the player shall not be allowed to return to any WBSC activity until after he or she is reviewed and cleared by a licensed health care provider, per Virginia State law and documented to the WBSC President.


·       When emergency medical care is needed in the absence of the parent or guardian, the coach/manager shall call 911 and have the player taken to the ER, along with the notarized medical release form obtained from each family before the start of the season.


·       In any situation, a parent may elect to remove his or her child from the activity if the parent is concerned about a head injury or potential head injury.


·       Any WBSC coach – and specially the designated head coach of the team – supervising a game or team activity is responsible for observing head injuries and being sensitive to activities that have the potential for head injury. e.g. heading practice.


·       As per above, if an injury or suspected injury occurs, the coach, team manager or a designated parent will use the CRR phone evaluation and/ or CDC checklist to determine the presence of symptoms and next steps as above


·       Team coaches are required to report to their Director of Coaching any player removed from the field for an evaluation after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body or other injury.  The Director of Coaching shall contact the player’s parent or guardian regarding the status of the player’s medical evaluation if any and the results.


·       Given the serious nature of concussions and the difficulty in diagnosing brain trauma, caution should be used in evaluation symptoms and the return to play.


Part 3 – Return to Play


·       Once a player has been removed from play due to suspected concussion or has failed the CRR/CDC guidelines, medical clearance by a licensed healthcare provider must be provided in writing to the Director of Coaching or WBSC President prior to the player’s participation on-or-off field WBSC physical activities.


·       Once clearance to play has been authorized by a licensed healthcare provider, WBSC will institute the gradual return to play.


·       Parental consent alone is not acceptable for return to play.


·       Coach consent alone is not acceptable for return to play.


·       Parents seeking a specialized medical evaluation or needs assistance in obtaining information, WBSC recommends utilizing the SCORE Clinic at the Children’s National Medical Center for further information.  Contact number is 202-476-2429

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