Category Archives: High School

Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine to Host Ice Hockey Concussion Summit

Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine will host “Ice Hockey Summit III: Action on Concussion” Sept. 28-29.

Physicians, scientists, athletic trainers, coaches, officials and retired pro players from the U.S. and Canada will discuss the science of concussion, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment and future research. The summit focuses on ice hockey, but concussion-related topics apply to all sports.

The sessions include:

  • “Which Hockey Players are at Greatest Risk and Why?
  • “Can Financial Concerns and Pending Litigation Reduce Concussions in Pro Hockey?”
  • “The Brain’s Response to Concussive Events: Updates on the Neurometabolic Cascade”
  • “Pharmacologic Interventions Available now and on the Horizon”
  • “Fish Oils, Supplements and their Neuroprotective Effects”

“Ultimately, we’re coming together to make the sport safer for our athletes,” says Michael Stuart, M.D., orthopedic surgeon and co-director, Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine. “Athletes at all levels are bigger, stronger and faster. Therefore, we must improve our ability to diagnose, treat and prevent traumatic brain injury.”

As with the first two summits in 2010 and 2013, participants will develop recommendations to improve the safety of the sport. Panels featuring former hockey players, medical providers and experts with coaching, officiating and athletic training backgrounds will provide ideas for potential solutions.

Past recommendations helped foster rule changes, including penalties for all hits to the head, a delay in body checking until the 14-and-under level and the elimination of dangerous acts, such as checking from behind. After these rule changes, Minnesota Hockey/Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine data showed a significant decline in penalties related to checking from behind.

“To reduce concussions in hockey, we must change the mindset and behavior of players, coaches and fans,” says Aynsley Smith, Ph.D., sport and exercise psychologist and concussion investigator at Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine. “From a young age, athletes need to learn proper body control and stick play to shift the focus from checking to improving skills. We are making progress, but there is more to do.”

Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine is facilitating this conference with support from USA Hockey, International Ice Hockey Federation, Thorne Science, Hockey Equipment Certification Committee, American College of Sports Medicine, the Johansson-Gund Endowment, the Brian Mark Foundation and the Martineau Gift.

Members of the media who want to attend or interview participants should RSVP to the contact below by Thursday, Sept. 21.

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Provocative Second-Impact Syndrome Article Headlines Latest Issue of Concussion Litigation Reporter

The September issue of Concussion Litigation Reporter features many great stories. But one in particular may strike a nerve. Steven E. Pachman, Esq., Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads and Kimberly L. Sachs, Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law co-wrote an article entitled “Second Impact Syndrome: Diagnosis versus Myth.”

Other stories in the issue include:

Appeals Court Grants Relief to Riddell in Coverage Action

Jury Awards Concussed Softball Player $1.1 Million

Court Filing Urges Helmet Requirements to Protect Women Lacrosse Players

New Study Suggests Brain is in Recovery Mode Long After Athletes Have Been Cleared to Return to Play

The Golden State’s Golden Payouts No Longer Available to All Retired Athletes

Insurance Company and Conference Reportedly Settle Coverage Question

Letters of Protection, Deferred Medical Payments, and the Law

Attorney Assails CTE Study, Praises the Benefits of ‘Combat’ Sports

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Wyoming High School Activities Association Provides Concussion Insurance for Wyoming Students

Every high school and middle school student participating in a Wyoming High School Activities Association (WHSAA) sponsored activity will now be covered by concussion insurance in 2017.

Specifically, the WHSAA purchased a policy for all of its student participants, approximately 25,000 annually, providing them with “zero out-of-pocket costs should they suffer a head injury,” according to the association. Wyoming is the 5th state to provide this coverage for all student participants.

“The WHSAA is pleased to be able to offer this protection for all of our students involved in activity programs,” Commissioner Ron Laird said. “This policy coverage will assist families should their student need to visit a medical professional due to a concussion. With the money we have received through our agreement with the NFHS Network, we have been able to create a revenue stream to cover the approximately $37,000+ premium.”

This is another proactive step by the WHSAA Board of Directors that assures all WHSAA student participants, who are diagnosed with a sport or activity related concussion, will be afforded treatment with no out-of-pocket costs.

“We have been active in attempting to minimize risks for our students for many years with the assistance of our Sports Medicine Advisory Committee,” said Laird. “The WHSAA was one of the first states to establish a rule of not allowing a student to participate after being unconscious during a contest. Student safety remains our number one focus. This is just another opportunity for us to assist in taking care of our student participants.”

The insurance is the HeadStrong Concussion Insurance Program developed by Dissinger Reed Insurance. It covers every student in grades five through twelve participating in any practice or game sanctioned by the WHSAA.

“The WHSAA’s continued commitment to concussion care is exemplary and should be applauded,” said Dissinger Reed owner and CEO, Christian Reed. “Their proactive approach to protecting the young athletes in Wyoming has been fantastic and we are thrilled they are the 5th state association to adopt the HeadStrong program.”

For any claim, the participant’s insurance would first be billed and then the HeadStrong insurance would act as secondary insurance and assist with unpaid deductibles or co-pays. The maximum benefit is $25,000 per injury and there is no deductible per claim.

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