New Zealand Rugby (NZR) has conducted a review of the Head Injury Assessment (HIA) process followed for Ireland prop Jeremy Loughman during the match between the Māori All Blacks and Ireland at FMG Stadium Waikato on Wednesday 29 June.
The following statement is from NZR Medical Manager Karen Rassmussen, who led the review.
“New Zealand Rugby has conducted a review of the HIA process during the Māori All Blacks match against Ireland at FMG Stadium Waikato in Hamilton on Wednesday 29 June. As a result of this review NZR believes Ireland prop Jeremy Loughman should not have been allowed back on to the field during the first half. While NZR stands by the HIA processes in place and is satisfied that player welfare is the number one priority for medical staff at the match, we have identified a gap in communications, which meant critical video evidence was not fully accounted for as part of the Head Injury Assessment (HIA) process undertaken by the independent match day medical team. We will be reinforcing the full HIA process and protocols for the remainder of the Steinlager Series to ensure video evidence is communicated more accurately between independent match day medical staff to enable them to make the right call with regards to player safety.” – NZR Medical Manager Karen Rasmussen