Play Smart, Your Brain Matters Program
D.C. Concussion Awareness
This year, Children’s National Health System and MedStar Sports Medicine were chosen as the first in the nation to receive funding from the Washington, D.C., Department of Health, to establish a concussion awareness training program, that will help enforce the protocols of the District’s Athletic Concussion Protection Act of 2011.
The concussion law applies to athletes 18 years old or younger in the District of Columbia. It requires athletes be removed from practice or play following a suspected concussion, and only allows them to return after written clearance by a licensed healthcare provider who is experienced in the evaluation and management of concussions.
Children’s National and MedStar, will be working with local organizations to host District-wide events bringing together youth, student athletes, athletic program administrators, coaches, school nurses, and parents, to talk about the identification of concussions and when it is safe to return to working, playing, and learning. The partners are:
- Washington, D.C., Department of Health
- Washington, D.C.’s Department of Parks and Recreation
- Office of the State Superintendent of Education
- Brain Injury Association of Washington, D.C.
- Children’s School Services through Children’s National
In addition to hosting trainings and raising awareness, this program will help to address the communication between primary care providers and emergency department physicians. Health Information Technology Solutions (HITS) for Kids will be working in the background of this program to ensure open communications and follow up care between an athlete’s parents, emergency and primary care physicians. HITS for Kids is an initiative to improve concussion care for children using information technology and is the first of its kind.
The partners also will be conducting an evaluation to look at concussion knowledge and awareness among adults involved in youth sports and activities in the District of Columbia.
- DC Concussion Awareness Materials
- CDC Materials