Donegal team doctor Kevin Moran has warned of serious injuries in the GAA

Tom Comack


Tom Comack


Donegal GAA doctor

Kevin Moran, Donegal team doctor

Donegal team doctor, Kevin Moran, has issued a warning on the increase in serious injuries in Gaelic Games, many of which, he says, resemble road traffic accidents.

Mr Kevin Moran, a consultant at Letterkenny University Hospital, made his comments today when speaking on the main lunch time news on RTE Radio One.

While saying he did not wish to be alarmist, he stressed that the more sensational injuries sustained resembled road traffic accidents.

He said that the increases had come about due to the fact that the players were getting stronger. According to Mr Moran, the serious nature of the injuries is not confined to inter-county games; it was also an increasing problem at club level too.

And while he also stressed that such injuries were rare, he added they still were happening.  

“As the players are getting stronger, injuries are shifting from being contact injuries to being collision injuries,” said Mr Moran.

“I don’t want to be alarmist because the more sensational injuries that resemble road traffic accidents are extremely rare, and the vast majority of injuries are still mostly lower limb injuries.”

Mr Moran said it was important that doctors and physios are educated about the risks. He also felt that a rule to allow the interchange of players to be allowed, and suggested that referee take a greater role in monitoring injuries.   

“Everybody is aware of concussion, but our biggest problem is that for 95 per cent of our games there isn’t a trained professional present - either a doctor or chartered physiotherapist.”
“I feel referees are an untapped resource in the sense that they are present at every game. They are usually the most detached objective person and they are in a position to make a decision about taking a player off the pitch.”

“We know from a  prospectus study with UCD that concussion accounts for three per cent of all injuries in GAA and is quite rare.

“And only a small number, a tiny fraction, will have high impact injuries that might cause injury to the chest cavity, with a collapsed lung or injury to the abdomen, or with an injury to the kidney which would be the most vulnerable organs.”

Mr Moran’s advice is when injuries occur, the player must be taken off immediately and receive appropriate medical attention at the nearest medical facility, if there is no doctor present at a game.