Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Football Player Collapse Shows Player Safety Guidelines Make Sense

Since football season is upon us, we have new technology available to treat serious injuries of our children and grandchildren. A recent situation occurred in Wake County, North Carolina where it is reported that a 15-year-old collapsed while playing in a football scrimmage who was revived on the scene with a defibrillator. The story is as follows:

A Cary High School football player remains in good condition at UNC Hospitals after collapsing at a football scrimmage this weekend at the Wakefield High School Field.

15-year old Michael White had to be revived on scene with a defibrillator.

That incident once again focuses on the issue of player safety in high school athletics.

In Wake County, there are specific guidelines set up to make sure players stay safe.

Although those guidelines exist, some county schools go beyond them to make sure their players are exposed to smaller and smaller risks.

Every Wake County school must have a licensed trainer as part of their staff.

In Apex, the trainer and his assistant are both nationally certified, which goes beyond requirements.

Apex’s trainer Miles Kliewer explained his philosophy.

“In the athletic training world, it’s always better to err on the side of being conservative and pretty much all of us take that approach,” Kliewer said.

For players in Apex, the days of simply getting a doctors OK to play are long gone.

“We’re doing everything we can medically to keep kids healthy,” explained Apex High Athletic director Del Phillips.

For Apex, means having multiple automatic defibrillators available at sporting events instead of the required single defibrillator.

Phillips adds, the booster club has supplied funding to buy special therapy machines for the trainer.

In addition, the Apex High Athletic department is also using a new diagnostic tool this year for its contact sports.

They have students take a special computer test to note their cognitive skills.

Then if they suffer what appears to be concussion injury officials have the kids take the test again on the sidelines.

If the results don't match, coaches and trainers can tell the child has suffered a concussion, even if the student athlete insists they are OK to play.

Once coaches know a concussion has occurred, the athlete can be treated appropriately.

For those charged with protecting student athletes, all that is necessary now.

“You’ve got to protect people,” said Phillips. “No game is worth losing someone’s life.”

And although Miles Kliewer may work at Apex, he knows requiring that a defibrillator be available for the Cary linebacker who collapsed this weekend was the key to saving the youngster’s life.

“We do have all of our guidelines in place and they were followed,” he said. “That’s the way it worked. The individual wound up in the hospital under advanced medical care, which is what should have happened.”

See http://wake.mync.com/site/Wake/news/story/40300/cary-football-player-collapse-shows-player-safety-guidelines-make-sense/


For additional information contact:

Alan L. Morton
1005 North Eighth Street
Post Office Box 420
Boise, ID 83701-0420
Telephone: 208.344.5555
Toll Free: 866.946.1669 (866.WIN.1.NOW)
Facsimile: 208.342.2509
Email: amorton@mortonlawyers.com
Website: www.mortonlawyers.com

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