Coaches and referees must therefore frequently make important safety decisions on whether a match should take place or not, or how to proceed if an emergency presents itself on the field.

It is for this reason, that SARU provides minimum medical standards that need to be in place before a match can start, and contains lay coverage of basic medical topics in the educational content presented in its BokSmart Rugby Safety courses, primarily aimed at non-medical personnel.

On top of this BokSmart provides a toll-free National emergency telephone helpline called the ‘BokSmart Spineline’ to expedite and fast track the emergency treatment and management of a potentially seriously head, neck, or spine-injured rugby player.

The BokSmart Spineline is a dedicated emergency rugby helpline for serious concussion, head, neck, and spine injuries. The number (0800 678 678) is linked to a National Emergency Service Provider, ER24, who provides the necessary advice, initial telephonic screen, and dispatches or arranges suitable road transportation of the injured player to the nearest or most suitable medical facility, where required.

The BokSmart Rugby Safety Course for coaches and referees addresses both the emergency identification and management of serious concussion, head, neck, and spine injuries, and educates everyone on the availability of this BokSmart Spineline service.