Sports Concussion: State Legislatures Taking Note

April 21, 2011

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Several states have passed crucial legislation in 2011 that will implement new regulations on youth sports concussions, while many others have legislation on the issue still pending. This comes as the health provider community learns new information on the long term effects of concussions, which in turn is causing more concern about safety issues in youth sports.

The AAN has been proactive on this issue, including joining the Youth Sports Concussion Coalition, as well as putting out a position statement on sports concussion.

As of April 20, 10 states have passed language addressing youth sports concussion. States passing new laws this year include:

This brings the total number of states with youth sports concussion laws to 18, as Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Virginia, and Washington have passed previous legislation.

The AAN has been encouraging state legislatures across the country to address this critical issue and supports legislation that addresses:

  • Concussion education for young athletes, parents, and coaches on an annual basis.
  • Immediate removal of an athlete from play or practice if they appear to have suffered from a concussion.
  • Mandatory evaluation and clearance of an athlete by a physician or licensed health care professional with training in the evaluation of management of concussion before returning to play.

To learn more about what the AAN has done regarding the issue of sports concussion and access AAN reference sheets for physicians, coaches, and players, visit the sports concussion toolkit.

Learn if the AAN is tracking sports concussion legislation in your state.

For more information contact Tim Miller at tmiller@aan.com.