Guidelines for the Prevention and Management of Concussions and Head Injuries in Youth Sports
The Center for Disease Control estimates that 300,000 concussions are sustained during sports-related activity each year in the United States. A concussion is a traumatic brain injury caused by a direct or indirect blow to the head or body. In order to ensure the safety of young athletes, it is important that youth coaches, officials, managers and parents/guardians are educated about the nature and treatment of sports-related concussions and brain injuries.
Recreation and parks departments and youth sports organizations should develop procedures for the prevention and management of concussions and head injuries in accordance with the following guidelines:
1) Require all coaches, managers, trainers, facility supervisors and officials to complete a head injury safety training program that includes, but is not limited to the following:
a. the recognition of the symptoms of head and neck injuries, concussions, and injuries related to second-impact syndrome; and
b. information on return to play protocols which may be necessary for participants who have sustained a concussion or other head injury.
2) Distribute an educational fact sheet prior to each sports season that provides information about sports-related concussions and other head injuries to the parents or guardians of the participants.
3) Ensure that participants who are suspected of having a concussion or other head injury shall be immediately removed from practice or competition and not participate in further sports activity until he/she is evaluated by a physician or other licensed healthcare provider trained in the evaluation and management of concussion and receives written clearance from the physician to resume participation. Please be aware that if the recreation and parks department and youth sports organizations use fields and facilities they do not own, the owners of those facilities may have additional requirements.
CDC Heads Up Online Training Course: http://www.cdc.gov/concussion/HeadsUp/online_training.html
Sample Parent and Guardian Fact Sheet: Click the Resource Link button to download the PDF
Sample Return to Play Protocol: Click the Resource Link button to download the PDF