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New Legislation to Prevent Youth Sports-Related Brain Injury

Our Chicago injury lawyers know that as summer begins, so do youth sports such as football, soccer, and basketball. An emerging health issue in youth sports is the need for precautions to prevent brain injury. According to the Center for Injury Research and Policy, an estimated 300,000 sports-related brain injuries occur every year in the United States. Chicago brain injury lawyers frequently settle and bring to trial brain injury lawsuits. For youths between 15 and 24 years old, sports injuries are the second most common traumatic brain injury. The study found that concussions represented ten percent of all high school athletic injuries and over 5 percent of all college athletic injuries. Concussions, in particular, can cause long-term health issues or even death. Concussions occur when a blow or motion to the head or body causes the brain to rapidly move within the skull. According to the Herald-News, new Illinois legislation hopes to help prevent long-term damage from youth sports related concussions.

The Illinois General Assembly recently approved House Bill 200, which takes the decision of how to treat concussions out of the hands of the coaches, players, parents, or anyone else who would encourage the youth to play despite injury. After a concussion, House Bill 200 requires that a licensed medical professional’s approval is obtained before the child can return to the game or practice. The bill also mandates the Illinois High School Association to develop guidelines to educate coaches, parents, and the student athletes on head injuries. According to the Chicagobears.com website, even the Chicago Bears are enthusiastic about the legislation. House Bill 200 is currently awaiting gubernatorial approval.

Chicago brain injury lawyers at Levin and Perconti encourage everyone to take precautions to prevent brain injury in our youths. Sports is a great way for kids to learn about teamwork, leadership, dedication, and to just have fun. However, sports should not cause preventable brain injury so early in life.