Monday, February 27, 2006

Call for more skilled medical staff in football clubs

One of Vietnam's leading newspapers has called on football clubs to to invest more into scientific research and medical care for players. Writing in Thanhnien News, Nhan Dan said lack of awareness and doctor availability means most premier football clubs in Vietnam lack the ability to provide athletes with first aid and treatment for injuries.

The era of clubs using "drivers or accountants to administer medical care for footballers" should be over, he wrote. "Even veteran footballers experienced in sports injuries are also used as medical staff, leading to maltreatment – making the injuries even worse."

Saigon Port FC is one of the three clubs of Vietnam’s V-League which currently employ sports doctors. Hoang Anh Gia Lai and Dong Tam Long An also employ specialized staff to work with players. The other clubs choose to cooperate with the Sports Science Institute or the National Sports Training Center to hire seasonal specialists for their teams.

“Most sports doctors choose to work for hospitals and medical centers where they can access many different patients and work with advanced equipment and facilities to better develop their career,” Van Minh Thanh, who works for Saigon Port FC said.

Calling for more action, Nhan Dan said Vietnam's football clubs "should work out measures to cooperate with regional clubs and even the Asian Football Confederation to access international-level skilled medical staff."

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