Injury Database Launched

In 1894, the Jockey Club was founded with their main objectives and goals being to improve the Thoroughbred horse racing industry by becoming the registry for the breed, finding solutions to better breeding practices and to ensure that all racing establishments follow a set of rules and regulations to provide racehorses with improved health care and safer racing environments. By using the information gathered and discussed by the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit, the Jockey Club has taken serious action in regard to racing related injuries and has just unveiled the Equine Injury Database System.

The pilot program for the Equine Injury Database was launched on 1 June 2007 and participating racetracks recorded over three thousand injuries up until 12 July 2008. This data was used for testing and enabling system developers to ensure that the system is able to compile accurate reports from the data that has been recorded. The program will therefore be able to identify certain injuries and their frequencies and create statistics to assist racecourses and authorities to investigate the outcomes and seriousness of certain injuries. It will also be able to provide information, such as when a horse is at risk of serious injury and by looking at a comprehensive overview of injuries suffered throughout a number of states and their causes, steps can then be taken to improve the safety of racehorses.

All racecourses and establishments that are prepared to assist in gathering this vital in regard to injuries and fatalities, will receive the system free of charge. Because of their seriousness to create safer environments and health care for racehorses, the Jockey Club, through the assistance of two subsidiary companies, namely The Jockey Club Technology Services Inc and InCompass Solutions Inc., will be carrying the cost of running the system.

The Jockey Club has also expressed its gratitude towards the racecourses that assisted during the pilot program, the veterinarians and a special thanks went out to Dr Rick Arthur and Dr Mary Scollay for their assistance with developing the program and sharing their knowledge and expertise to refine the system. The Chairman of the Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Safety Committee was quoted saying: “The creation and launch of the Equine Injury Database system fills a glaring void in our industry. We are encouraged by the interest and support received from racetracks during the pilot phase of the project, and we strongly recommend the same level of support and participation now that the system is fully operational.” It is hoped that the new program with help in the fight against fatalities and injuries of racehorses, and give enough insight into the problems, so that a solution can be found to safeguard against breakdowns.

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