Cam Rayner after being subbed out of Brisbane's 2022 preliminary final due to injury. Picture: AFL Photos

THE AFL has replaced the medical substitute with a tactical substitute for next year, with clubs informed on Monday of the significant rule change.

The League told clubs ahead of the NAB AFL Draft on Monday that its recommendation to the AFL Commission ahead of their December meeting would be to allow four players on the interchange bench as well as one substitution for tactical reasons that can be used for any purpose at any stage of the game.

The AFL Competition Committee approved the change, which has been worked through in recent months.

The League said further details would be shared with clubs in coming weeks, but that the two-year-old rule of players needing a medical reason to be replaced on the ground would no longer be the case in 2023.

Nat Fyfe after being subbed out of Fremantle's game against Richmond in round 19, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

The medical substitute was introduced on the eve of the 2021 season after the AFL doubled to 12 days the mandatory time out of the game for a player who suffers a concussion.

At the time, the League's footy boss Steve Hocking said the rule was introduced with player safety in mind.

"Over recent years we have continued to take action to strengthen match-day protocols and amend the Laws of the Game to improve safety," he said.

"We continue to listen and learn and where we can reasonably make our game safer at any stage of the season, we will."

Between 2011-15, the interchange was reduced from four players to three but a substitute player was allowed to replace any other player at any time, for any reason.