Tuesday, December 27, 2011

NFL to Hire ATC's to Follow Concussion Protocols

Last week, the NFL announced it will hire independent ATC's to aid in making sure that teams are following concussion protocols.  You can read the article here.

This is fascinating to me for a number of reasons;
1.  This is more of an independent (although not entirely) approach to health care.  It's often discussed in certain circles that it is a potential conflict of interest to be employed by a business and also make proper health care decisions in the best interest of an employee.  That is, is the decision being made independently and in the athlete's best interest?  Or the organization?  It's an interesting question, and a difficult one to answer.  This is definitely a step in the right direction, in my opinion.
2.  It would seem that the NFL hold's ATC's in high regard, as they would hire them to insure that protocols are being followed.  Who better to evaluate real time concussion symptoms than an ATC? 
3.  The author of the articles uses the term trainer, which many of my colleagues would frown upon.  Me, not so much.  A good health care provider is a good health care provider.  Does a physician complain about being called "Doc"?  Maybe, I don't know.  But I do know that you can call me whatever you want, as long as I'm decent at what I do.   Let's focus our energy as a profession on other areas, such as clinical proficiency and following our position statements more closely in clinical practice.

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