June 16, 2011
North Carolina lawmakers are scheduled to sign on a bill, which will put into law several statutes to protect high school athletes’ from the dangers of concussions. The Charlotte Observer reported that The Gfeller-Waller Concussion Awareness Act will be signed on today by the Senate. It was passed unanimously through the House in early May.
The law requires public middle and high schools to provide education on concussion awareness to parents, athletes, coaches, volunteers, and first responders. The Act also states a player who shows signs of a concussion must be removed from play or practices immediately and cannot return until receiving medical clearance from a medical professional. Every school will be required to develop a plan for emergency situations.
The bill was named after two high school football players who died as a result of a concussion.
A concussion occurs when the brain hits the inside of the skull as a result of a blow to the head. The mild brain injury can have symptoms that range from subtle to obvious, but most patients report headaches, dizziness, nausea, irritability, and sleepiness. Physical signs include poor concentration, slow answers to questions, emotional instability, and slurred speech.
Medical science has only recently learned of the long-term damage these injuries can cause. If you or someone you know has been injured after suffering a blow to the head, contact a North Carolina Brain Injury Attorney with HensonFuerst.