Trainer: Now Is the Time for Schools to be Proactive

John Doherty, a certified athletic trainer and licensed physical therapist in Indiana, recently wrote a column where he stressed, among other things, how Indiana schools must be proactive about concussions in accordance with state law.

Doherty pointed specifically to the Indiana Department of Education and its requirement that schools “inform and educate coaches, student athletes, and parents of student athletes of the nature and risk of concussion and head injury to student athletes, including the risks of continuing to play after concussion or head injury.”

The next step is even more important, according to the trainer. It reads:

“A high school student athlete who is suspected of sustaining a concussion or head injury in a practice or game:

1) shall be removed from play at the time of the injury; and

2) may not return to play until the student athlete has received a written clearance under section 5(a) of this chapter.”

Doherty emphasized Section 5 (a), which reads, “A high school student athlete who has been removed from play under section 4 of this chapter may not return to play until the student athlete:

“1) is evaluated by a licensed health care provider trained in the evaluation and management of concussions and head injuries; and

“2) receives a written clearance to return to play from the health care provider who evaluated the student athlete.”

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