Bill Would Require High Schools to Report Sports Head Injuries to WIAA
There are literally hundreds of proposed pieces of legislation that will be kicked around during the 2020 Legislative Session in Olympia.
But one of them is gathering a lot of attention in the sports community. House Bill (HB) 2731 would require all high schools to report all extracurricular (sports) head injuries to the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA). They, in turn, would be required to compile the data and issue an annual report. All high schools in the state, public or private, who have athletic teams and cheerleaders are required to be WIAA members.
The bill, introduced by GOP Rep. Morgan Irwin of Enumclaw, would require the school list the student's age, gender, when and where the injury occurred, whether in a competition or practice, if the student has previous such history, whether the student was wearing protective equipment and a litany of other data. Presumably it would also include cheerleaders as well.
The bill would apply to high school athletes grades 9 through 12. Currently no such reporting or database exists. Standard concussion/head injury protocol involves a Coach being required to withhold a student from any such activity until they're cleared by a physician.
No doubt this bill influenced by the increase in attention begin focused on concussions in professional sports, especially the NFL. Supporters say it will allow officials to see if preventative measures are working in decreasing such trauma. Opponents say it will create extensive backlog for schools, and further 'unfounded' fears about concussions and sports.
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