Concussion Awareness Bill Signed

Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation raising awareness for youth concussions in Michigan, which has the support of many organizations across the state including the Detroit Lions and the NFL.
Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation raising awareness for youth concussions in Michigan, which has the support of many organizations across the state including the Detroit Lions and the NFL.

Thousands of young people each year are impacted by concussions, which is why I am proud Gov. Rick Snyder recently signed my legislation to protect young athletes.

The laws set guidelines on when an injured child can return to play and create a concussion awareness program that includes training and distributing education materials to coaches, parents and athletes.

A concussion is difficult to identify, so it is critical that coaches and parents can recognize the symptoms and know what steps to take if an injury occurs. Many concussions go unreported, so it is also crucial that we teach our young athletes about the seriousness of brain injuries.

More than 140,000 high school athletes are estimated to suffer a concussion each year, and the National Football League is leading an effort to get similar legislation passed in all 50 states and Congress.

I specifically want to thank Detroit Lions team president Tom Lewand for his leadership and assistance.

While high school football had the highest rate of concussions at 6.94 per 10,000 athletes in school-sponsored activities from 2008-2011, girls’ soccer wasn’t far behind, ranking fourth with a rate of 3.83.

Southwest Michigan Select Soccer Club Coach Tareck Halsey, his son and my daughter all joined me at the bill signing. They are a reminder that youth concussions can occur in a variety of sports and activities.

In fact, accidents while bicycling and playing on the playground rank first and third in the most number of brain injury emergency room visits.

As a father of three children, each involved in multiple sports and activities, my goal remains ensuring that the health of our young athletes is always the top priority.

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Proos’ Concussion Awareness Bill Signed

 

Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation raising awareness for youth concussions in Michigan, which has the support of many organizations across the state including the Detroit Lions and the NFL.

Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation on Tuesday to protect young athletes by educating coaches of youth sports organizations, including schools, and requiring them to adopt a concussion awareness program, said sponsor Sen. John Proos.

“This is about emphasizing the seriousness of concussions, which impact the lives of thousands of young people each year,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph, in a press release. “We must help inform parents, coaches and athletes about concussions and what is in the athlete’s best interest. A concussion is difficult to identify, so it is critical to ensure athletes understand the gravity of this type of injury and that we set guidelines that err on the side of caution so that a child’s health is always put first.”

Public Acts 342 and 343 of 2012 require the creation of a concussion awareness program that includes training and distribution of educational materials for coaches, parents and athletes. A youth suspected of sustaining a concussion will be required to be immediately removed from activity and would not be able to return until he or she had been evaluated by a health professional and received written clearance to play.

“Research consistently has shown that concussions are a serious health threat to athletes,” Snyder said. “Coaches and parents need to be proactive in recognizing the signs of a concussion so we can protect injured children and teens from any further complications.”

According to the National Federation of State High School Associations, more than 140,000 high school athletes are estimated to suffer a concussion each year. Ohio State University data show that high school football has the highest rate of overall concussions at 6.94 per 10,000 athletes participating in school-sponsored activities from 2008-2011, followed by ice hockey at 6.11, boys’ lacrosse at 4.21 and girls’ soccer at 3.83.

NFL Supports Concussion Awareness Program

The number of children suffering sports-related concussions is rising at an alarming rate – impacting the lives of many young people.

I recently sponsored legislation to require youth sports organizations, including schools, to adopt a concussion awareness program. It is about helping everyone involved recognize these injuries when they occur and establishing guidelines for when a young athlete can play again after suffering a concussion.

The National Football League (NFL) is leading an effort to get similar legislation passed in all 50 states and Congress. An NFL representative and Detroit Lions team president Tom Lewand testified in support of my bill, telling lawmakers about the impacts of concussions and the need to address it at all levels of sport.

Under Senate Bill 1122, a concussion awareness program would include training and distribution of educational materials for parents and athletes. A youth suspected of sustaining a concussion would be required to be immediately removed from activity and may not return until he or she has been evaluated by a health professional and received written clearance to play.

A Brown University study showed that from 1997 to 2007, the number of sports-related concussions among student-athletes ages 13-19 tripled to about 22,000. Doctors now estimate that as many as 30,000 sports-related concussions occur in the U.S. every year, and far too many of these types of injuries are going unreported.

If approved, Michigan would become the 36th state to require young sport agencies to establish a set of concussion awareness guidelines.

My goal is to ensure that the health of our young athletes always comes first.

Proos Working on Youth Athlete Concussion Legislation

State Senator John Proos

WKZO – Radio

State lawmakers are still pursuing legislation aimed at reducing the impact concussions have on youth athletes in Michigan.  State Senator John Proos says it was discussed last week, emphasizing that awareness needs to be raised among those involved with youth sports.

“If there’s ever a doubt,” Proos says, “you pull the kid out.”

Proos says when an athlete is stunned once, it may be time to stop there, as it’s often a second impact that does the most damage.  The bill should come up for a vote in the Senate in the next couple of weeks.

Proos Bill on Concussion Awareness Clears Senate Committee

Herald Palladium

The state’s Senate Health Policy Committee has approved legislation requiring youth sports organizations, including schools, to adopt a concussion awareness program.

Sen. John Proos, R-St. Joseph, sponsored the bill.

“The number of children suffering concussions during organized athletic activity is rising at an alarming rate and is impacting the lives of many young people throughout Michigan and nationwide,” Proos said in a press release. “This program would help everyone involved recognize concussions and brain injuries when they occur and put in place guidelines for when a young athlete can play again after suffering a concussion.”

Under the bill, all organizing entities that offer youth athletics would have to adhere to a concussion awareness program that includes awareness training, distribution of educational materials for parents and athletes and criteria for the removal of a youth from physical activity.

The NFL is leading an effort to get similar legislation passed in all 50 states and by Congress. Detroit Lions team president Tom Lewand testified in support of the bill.

“What the NFL and the Detroit Lions are working to establish is a standard of care across the country, so that youth athletes, coaches and volunteers are knowledgeable enough to recognize the signs of concussion and kids get the medical attention they need to recover before returning to play,” Lewand said in a press release.

The bill also states that a coach, adult volunteer or individual acting on behalf of the organizing entity must immediately remove a youth from physical activity who is suspected of sustaining a concussion. It also states the youth may not return until he or she has been evaluated by a health professional and receives written clearance.

Similar legislation has been introduced in the state House of Representatives.

If approved, Michigan would become the 36th state to pass legislation to require young sport agencies to establish a set of concussion awareness guidelines.