ugh-they-are-so-perfect

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ISU Communication No. 1951: On Ice Medical Emergencies in Figure Skating Protocol

Emphasis mine.

  1. As stated in the ISU Memorandum / Medical and Anti-Doping for Figure Skating, four (4) Medical Personnel must be present during competition and be positioned in pairs at opposite corners of the ice surface and two (2) Medical Personnel must be present during practice and be positioned at one end of the ice surface.
  2. The Medical Personnel will have radio contact with the Referee via the Timekeeper.
  3. When an emergency occurs on the ice that the Medical Personnel believes requires immediate attention, the Medical Personnel will radio the Referee via the Timekeeper to inform him/her that they need to enter the ice surface.
  4. The Referee will clear the ice surface.
  5. Medical Personnel with the respective Team physician (if present) enter the ice surface and assess the Skater.
  6. Skater is removed from the ice surface by the Medical Personnel and taken to the medical room for further assessment.
  7. The assessment is conducted by the Skater’s Team Physician (if present). If there is no Team Physician present the assessment will be conducted by the CMO (Chief Medical Officer) or Assistant CMO for the event.
  8. If the respective Team Physician is present to assess the Skater, he/she will provide the Referee via the Timekeeper with his/her assessment if the Skater is fit to compete or not.
  9. If there is no Team Physician present, the CMO/Assistant, will provide the Referee via the Timekeeper with his/her assessment if the Skater is fit to compete or not.
  10. ISU rule 515 paragraphs 3-7 of the Special Regulations & Technical Rules Single and Pair Skating and Ice Dance is applied.
  11. The Referee makes the final decision if the skater is allowed back onto the ice surface to compete.
  12. The Physician who conducted the assessment completes the attached ISU Return to Competition Form which is provided to the Skater and the Referee.

So it’s pretty obvious that last season’s Cup of China disaster was the reason behind this ISU communication. While I definitely hope that nothing like that will ever happen again, I’m glad that the ISU has formalized a procedure in case it does, one which holds specific people responsible and requires written documentation, as well as taking the final decision to compete out of the skaters’ hands.