Monthly Archives: May 2013

Spotlight on the Youth Concussion Act

iStock_000016583408SmallWe are big believers in truth in advertising. That’s why our team wanted to recognize the Youth Sports Concussion Act, which helps ensure that safety standards for sports equipment used by young athletes are up to date and informed by the latest science. Introduced on May 22, 2013 by U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and John D. “Jay” Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, the legislation seeks to protect youth athletes from the dangers of sports-related traumatic brain injuries by improving equipment safety standards and curbing false advertising claims.

“We want our children to be active and participate in sports, but we must take every precaution to protect them from traumatic head injuries,” said Senator Udall in the press announcement.”There will always be some risk, but athletes, coaches and parents need to be aware of the dangers and signs of concussion. And in order for them to best protect the young athletes, we must make sure they are using safe equipment and curb misleading advertising that gives them a false sense of security.”

During the 2011-2012 school year, more than 300,000 high school athletes in the most common sports were diagnosed with concussions, though many head injuries continue to go unreported and ignored. Researchers have found that children and adolescents are particularly susceptible to concussions and that – once concussed – the likelihood of suffering another increases each time. Sports are the second leading cause of traumatic brain injury for people who are 15 to 24 years old, behind only motor vehicle crashes. Every year American athletes suffer up to an estimated 3.8 million sports-related concussions.

Goals of the Youth Sports Concussion Act:

  • Instruct the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to review the findings of a forthcoming National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report on sports-related concussions in youth;
  • Authorize the CPSC to make recommendations to manufacturers and, if necessary, promulgate new consumer rules for protective equipment based on the findings of the NAS report; and
  • Allow the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to impose civil penalties for using false claims to sell protective gear for sports. State attorneys general could also enforce such violations.

 
What do you think of the Youth Sports Concussion Act?

 

Source:

Senator Tom Udall’s website, Udall, Rockefeller Introduce Bill to Help Protect Young Athletes from Sports-Related Traumatic Brain Injuries, May 22, 2013


The Rise of Youth Sports Concussion Clinics

iStock_000009674442SmallWhen the increasing number of sports concussions in the game of football began dominating the headlines, coaches, school administrators and parents started clamoring for more ways to keep student-athletes safer on the field. Education and legislation focusing on concussion prevention and awareness became more common. Mouth guards, helmets, computerized testing and smart phone applications have taken injury prevention technology to new heights. Attention started shifting to the playing field itself as our sponsor, Brock International, launched the first synthetic turf safety and drainage layer engineered specifically for the ideal footing requirements and safety of high school and middle school athletes.

But one of the most rapidly growing responses to concussion concerns is the proliferation of specialized facilities created to deal with brain injuries and their aftermath.  As this recent New York Times story reports, dozens of youth concussion clinics in the form of outpatient centers connected to large hospitals have opened in nearly 35 states. Like in Boston, where the sports concussion clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital sees spikes in visits and phone calls every time a major story breaks about youth concussions or the long-term effects of brain injuries in professional athletes.

“We are really in the trenches of a new medical experience,” said Richard Ginsburg, the director of psychological services at Massachusetts General Hospital’s youth sports concussion clinic, in the article. “First of all, there’s some hysteria, so a big part of our job is to educate people that 90 percent of concussions are resolved in a month, if not sooner. As for the other 10 percent of patients, they need somewhere to go. So we see them. We see it all.”

From our perspective, we feel that the more people know about the dangers of concussions, the better equipped they will be to prevent them. Specialized treatment centers are meeting a growing need. When an injury is quickly resolved, parents and students alike will have more peace of mind about taking the right steps after the concussion is incurred. And for those with more serious needs, getting the best treatment possible immediately can impact the rest of their lives.

What do you think about the rise of specialized youth sports concussion clinics?


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