Jeffrey S. Kutcher, MD, founder and chair of the AAN Sports Neurology Section, testified on October 19, 2011, at a hearing focusing on concussions in sports and the marketing of "anti-concussion" or "concussion-reducing" sports equipment. Kutcher's invitation came on the heels of two trips to Washington, DC, where he and the AAN's Legislative Counsel Mike Amery discussed concussion policy implications with key lawmakers in Congress.
Kutcher's testimony focused on the potential harm being caused by false claims made by sports product manufacturers. In his written testimony, Kutcher stated that false claims do "far more than simply the financial harm of paying more for something that isn't likely to work as claimed. It is the harm that comes from [athletes] having a false sense of security, from not understanding how the injury occurs and what can actually be done to prevent it. This issue is a growing public concern, and rightly so."
Kutcher serves as the director of University of Michigan's comprehensive academic program in sports neurology, as well as the university's team physician. Kutcher has been a leader in the AAN's efforts to improve the public's awareness and patient outcomes for concussion. He is currently co-leading the AAN's work to provide a meaningful, evidence-based update to the 1997 AAN clinical practice guideline on sports concussion.
Kutcher is a 2009 graduate of the AAN's Palatucci Advocacy Leadership Forum, which trains AAN members to advocate for their patients and the profession of neurology. Due to his concussion advocacy efforts, he was named the 2010 Palatucci Advocate of the Year.