Emergencies on the Field are you equipped?

As we approach the reboot of the 2020 season, we will be faced with many challenges as we enter the rugby arena. I’d like to touch on an often forgotten part of that return – on-field emergencies. I would like to relay an event that transpired only this week where I witnessed first-hand the Rugby spirt, commitment, team work & resolve. A player suffered multiple cardiac arrests during a seniors touch rugby training session. He lived due to the actions of the fellow players and referees. Two of our members of NSW Rugby Referee’s were a part of the response that assisted in this life saving outcome, they are Aragon Heppel & Arron Dehlsen. Aragon was 1st respondent and together with other players performed CPR to revive the player. This was a team effort with 14 men all doing what they could to assist. Some went to get a defibrillator while another rang for an ambulance, others ran to a nearby hospital to seek trained medical assistance, others unlocked gates while the remainder were on hand to assist if needed or were off waiting to give the arriving ambulance directions to the incident. It took over 15min for the ambulance to arrive… we were very lucky a defibrillator was on hand otherwise sadly this tale could have had a different outcome. In that I ask that you pause and think for a moment and ask yourself-

Am I equipped to handle a situation if a player had an emergency on the field? Not all of us will be in a situation where medically trained staff are in attendance.

Do I know my smart rugby requirements?

Do I know the basics of CPR?

Is the defibrillator available, where is it?

What do I do if there is not a defibrillator at the ground?

We are post COVID 19 What has changed?

These are all relevant when it comes down to saving a life. May I point out that at no stage did COVID 19 come across anyone’s mind during the episode this week when giving mouth to mouth resuscitation.

I implore you to take whatever steps you think necessary to equip & up skill yourselves with the tools you think you may need to deal with an emergency on the field. This time it was a heart attack, next it may be another type of serious injury.

The actions you take now could enable a loved one, stranger, team mate or in this case a friend the chance to go home to his or her family.

I’d like to thank the men involved that night and the Mosman Rugby Club for raising the funds 2 years ago to have a defibrillator on hand at the ground.

Long live the rugby spirit, long live those who do their part to make it happen.