MD, FIFA Chief Medical Officer, Chairman F-MARC, Schulthess Clinic Zurich, Switzerland

“The motivation for participating in team sports is fun and at the same time embroils social involvement. Fair play is fundamental: don’t cheat, don’t harm your fellow player – both of which partially overlap medical ethics – Primum Nil Nocere. The main objective of Football Medicine is to promote football as a health enhancing leisure activity, improving social behaviour.

Another aim is to use the popularity of football to disseminate health messages in order to tackle and prevent communicable and non-communicable diseases through the established global school system.

From medicine for football, to football for health, doctors and scientists have proof, the football stars such as Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar, amongst a team of the 11, become educators. We have learnt on the field, that when football talks everybody listens. With the full support of the FIFA President, we avail of this platform, aiming to contribute towards the improvement of public health.”

Jiří Dvořák is Professor at the University of Zurich and Senior Consultant in Neurology at the Schulthess Spine Center in Zurich and Chief Medical Officer to FIFA.

He is a senior Editor of the British Journal of Sports Medicine and deputy editor of SPINE and is widely published with 320 original articles and 48 books in different languages.

His current research activities are focused on prevention of communicable and non-communicable diseases using the popularity of football within a larger project “Football for Health”, as well a head and brain injuries.

In 1994 he became the Chairman of F-MARC (FIFA Medical Assessment and Research Centre) and Chief Medical Officer to FIFA. He currently sits on the IOC Medical and Science Committee and is a member of the WADA Health, Medicine and Science Committee. As FIFA Chief Medical Officer he was in charge for medical organization of 6 past FIFA World Cups.

Prof. Dvořák was also appointed as senior adviser to co-chairs of NCYSS (National Council of Youth Sports Safety). He has received numerous awards for his research work on the spine.