Massachusetts lawmakers reviewing concussion proposalsMassachusetts’ Joint Committee on Public Health began hearing testimony this week on a number of proposals that would address concussions in high school and youth sports.
Six different bills have been put forward by state lawmakers. One would create a commission to analyze data from all high school sports concussions, and another would establish a database allowing the state to track concussions at all schools. States like Michigan and Texas already use a registry to monitor concussion numbers from year to year.The Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts estimates that more than 67,000 people across the state — including non-athletes — suffer a traumatic brain injury each year, as reported by WCVB.com.
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It’s numbers like those that are prompting lawmakers across the country to take a close look at how to improve safety.
“They’re starting to realize and parents are starting to take notice that maybe their kid should be conscious of getting their head hit,” Madeline Uretsky said.
Testimony included advocates trying to make sure private and independent school athletes get the same baseline concussion testing that public school athletes do.
Other states also are trying to address concussions through legislation, including Maryland, Delaware and Montana. By tracking concussion numbers, states hope they can determine whether current safety precautions and improved equipment designs are making a difference.
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