Connecticut Children’s Advocates: Concussions and Youth Athletic Activities

Below is testimony of Connecticut Children’s Medical Center to the Committee on Children regarding Senate Bill 769 An Act Concerning Concussions and Youth Athletic Activities Conducted on Public Athletic Fields.

Senator Moore, Senator Suzio, Representative Urban, members of the Committee on Children, thank you for the opportunity to share my thoughts about Senate Bill 769 An Act Concerning Concussions and Youth Athletic Activities Conducted on Public Athletic Fields.

We are David Wang, MD, MS, Medical Director and Carl Nissen, MD, from Elite Sports Medicine at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. We are submitting testimony in support of this proposed legislation but would like to emphasize that when it comes to concussion education, it is critically important to consider what is appropriate education, who is best suited to deliver that information and how can it be done most effectively.

A concussion is a functional injury to the brain resulting from a traumatic hit to the head, face, neck or a blow to the body that delivers an impulsive force to the head. Concussions require prompt diagnosis and treatment to ensure a smooth and successful return to academics and athletics. As one of the most common sports injuries in school aged children, Elite Sports Medicine at Connecticut Children’s has developed a comprehensive, sports-related concussion program for adolescent and young adult athletes.

We are pleased that the State of Connecticut has taken concerns about concussions seriously over the past several years, enacting legislation that will help protect young athletes. We support Senate Bill 769 because any opportunity to expand awareness of and education about concussions in young athletes is a step in the right direction. Systems and protocols that help coaches, parents and athletes know the facts about concussions rather than the myths will help more kids stay safe and healthy. We would be happy to serve as a resource for you as you debate this proposed legislation.

Thank you for your consideration.