Government of Canada invests in new project to reduce, prevent and manage concussions
New project will equip schools, coaches, parents and health professionals with tools and resources
April 23, 2019 - Public Health Agency of Canada - Toronto, Ontario
Concussions remain a serious public health issue because of their frequency and potential for serious short- and long-term consequences on brain health, especially among young people. Continuing to reduce, prevent and manage concussions is key to making sport and physical activity safer for everyone.
Today, the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health, and the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Sport and Science announced more than $1 million for Parachute’s Concussion Harmonization Phase II project, which supports the Government of Canada’s commitment to implement a national approach to increase the prevention, recognition and treatment of concussions in Canada.
With this investment, Parachute will:
increase concussion awareness across Canada and provide Canadians with digital resources that offer information on managing concussions;
work with the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital to develop and release a new toolkit to support primary and secondary school students in returning to school after a concussion;
increase access to and support for harmonized concussion protocol tools for all national sport organizations;
work with the British Columbia Injury Prevention Unit to expand the Concussion Awareness Training Tool to include translated up-to-date concussion education courses for parents, teachers and coaches across Canada; and
develop new return-to-activity tools to support Canadians in returning to their day-to-day activities after experiencing a concussion.
This project will build on Parachute’s work over the past two years to increase the prevention and management of concussions in Canada. This includes the release of the Canadian Guideline on Concussion in Sport as well as school and sport concussion protocols and an online medical training course.
“Being and staying active is an important aspect of leading a healthy life, but too many children and youth are experiencing a concussion during sports and recreation activities, sometimes with tragic outcomes. Active Canadians of all ages need to have access to the right resources to help prevent and manage concussions. While we have made significant progress in implementing Canada’s national concussion strategy, there is still work to be done. We are proud to continue to support the work of Parachute and its partners in helping parents, teachers, athletes, coaches and health professionals prevent and manage concussions.”
The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health
“Our government is committed to ensuring the safety of all Canadians participating in sport. This investment will allow sports organizations to recognize, manage and prevent concussions at all levels of sport. I am encouraged by the work being done by Parachute, the sport community as well as the provinces and territories on this important issue.”
The Honourable Kirsty Duncan
Minister of Science and Sport
“Parachute thanks the Public Health Agency of Canada for this important investment in our continued work to help Canadians prevent, recognize and manage concussions. With this support, we are able to further expand the reach of sports concussion protocols, and educate more Canadians about concussions, which happen in so many settings – not just in sports. As Canada’s charity dedicated to injury prevention, we are honoured to lead this national initiative.”
Steve Podborski, O.C.
President and CEO, Parachute
This $1 million investment builds on an initial investment of $1.4 million in October 2016 to Parachute and other partners that focused on a harmonized approach to concussion management, including athlete and student return-to-school and return-to-play protocols.
Every year Canadian hospital emergency departments treat an estimated 53,000 concussions in adults aged 20 years and above (25,000 men, 28,000 women), and an estimated 46,000 concussions in children and youth aged 5 to 19 years (26,000 males, 20,000 females).
Of these concussions in children and youth, the majority occurred in sport and recreation activities. Ice hockey, rugby and ringette are the sports with the highest proportion of traumatic brain injuries (including concussion), ranging from 27% to 44% of injuries in children and youth aged 5 to 19 years, as reported by hospital emergency departments in 2016-17.
Office of Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health
Public Health Agency of Canada
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