Stephen C. Bloom, DO
(Photo courtesy of Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital)

Sports concussion specialists fom [removed]Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital[/removed], Grand Rapids, Mich, predict the new Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) concussion protocols will provide a new level of brain trauma prevention for 300,000 high school athletes.

“These protocols will put concussion diagnosis in the hands of the health care professional on the field, and the athletes’ return-to-player status in the hands of DO’s and MD’s who specialize in head trauma diagnosis and treatment,” said Stephen C. Bloom, DO, who heads up Mary Free Bed’s nationally recognized concussion program.

The mandate covers all sports at the MHSAA member’s 1,600 schools, and it has been issued to the state’s 12,000 referees. The new concussion diagnosis and player return standards only cover games, not practices.

“The fact that a player, once she or he is sidelined with a possible concussion, must get approval from a DO or MD, will create many more visits for this office and others across the state,” Bloom added.

MHSAA summary of concussion protocols:

  • Officials will have no role in determining if an athlete has sustained a concussion, but will only point out to the head coach that the player has been apparently injured and should be examined by a health care professional.
  • If the school’s designated heath care professional at the event confirms a concussion did not occur, the athlete may re-enter the contest.
  • In the event the game continues and the athlete is withheld for an apparent concussion, the athlete may not return to play that day and may only return at a future date after a written clearance is issued by a DO or MD.
  • The game official will file a report with the MHSAA and the removed player’s school.
  • For MHSAA post-season tournaments where an MHSAA-assigned physician is present, that individual will make the determination regarding same day return to play.

Click here to read the full report.

[Source: Mary Free Bed]