NFL Health Update: New laws result in jump in concussion treatment

NFL HEALTH UPDATE - JAN. 7, 2015

NEW CONCUSSION LAWS RESULT IN BIG JUMP IN CONCUSSION TREATMENT

New laws regulating concussion treatment, bolstered by heightened public awareness, have resulted in a large increase in the treatment of concussion-related injuries for school-age athletes, according to a University of Michigan study. Since 2009, all 50 states and the District of Columbia have enacted concussion laws regulating concussion treatment—the first laws written to address a specific injury.

The study, designed to evaluate the impact of new concussion laws, found a 92 percent increase in children whose families sought medical assistance for concussions in states with the legislation in place.

Other statistics include:

  • After the first concussion law passed in 2009, treatment rates in states without concussion laws increased roughly 20 percent annually. In states with concussion laws, the annual rates of treated concussion averaged an additional 13 percent higher.
  • Rates of treated concussion in states without legislation were 7 percent higher in 2009-10, 20 percent higher in 2010-11 and 34 percent higher in 2011-12 compared with pre-legislation trends.
  • By 2012, in states without legislation, office visits for concussion rose 78 percent compared to pre-legislation trends. The rate was 17 percent higher in states with concussion laws.

VIKINGS PLAYERS, ALUMNI HELP WITH "HEARING MISSION"

"The sight of someone experiencing sound in a way they've never done is an incredible thing to behold," said Vikings receiver Greg Jennings when players and alumni visited an annual "Hearing Mission" hosted by Starkey Hearing Foundation, where children received custom-fit devices.

Jennings recently led a group that included Harrison Smith, Jasper Brinkley, Ben Tate, Adam Thielen and Charles Johnson, alumni players Matt Blair, Joey Browner, Dave Osborne and Stu Voigt, as well as Viktor the Viking to the headquarters of Starkey Hearing Technologies and its charitable foundation about a mile from the Vikings home at Winter Park.

Starkey Hearing Technologies has helped several members of Blair's family with hearing difficulties

PATRIOTS HONOR VOLUNTEERS DURING HALFTIME CEREMONY

The Kraft family and the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation celebrated their ongoing Celebrate Volunteerism initiative in a halftime ceremony at the Patriots' regular season finale versus the Buffalo Bills on Dec. 28, at Gillette Stadium.

Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft announced grants of $5,000 to 14 nonprofits in the name of each of the "Patriots Difference Makers of the Week" selected throughout the season. Kraft was joined by president of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation Josh Kraft and Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer and executive director of community affairs Andre Tippett for a surprise check presentation during halftime.

The Kraft family and Patriots Charitable Foundation will continue to Celebrate Volunteerism during the post-season, off-season and seasons to come.

COLTS DELIVER GIFTS AND HOLIDAY CHEER TO PATIENTS AT RILEY HOSPITAL FOR CHILDREN

Indianapolis Colts players and Colts Cheerleaders recently visited Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health to spread some holiday cheer. Anthony Castonzo, Ulrick John, Andrew Luck, Jack Mewhort, Matt Overton and Joe Reitz spent time caroling with patients and their families.

Caroling has become an annual tradition for the Colts, started by owner and CEO Jim Irsay. It is part of a long-standing partnership the Colts have had with Riley at IU Health for more than a decade.

Over the years, the Colts organization and its players have supported the hospital through various programs, events and financial contributions, including a $1 million donation from Irsay in 2008. The team has embraced the annual "Miracle Ride" event and has made countless visits to patients at the hospital in addition to hosting special training camp visits for Riley families. The organization also created the Riley Coin Toss Kids program to give Riley patients the opportunity to participate in the coin toss at each Colts home game.

BILLS PLAYERS HOST PLAY 60 CHALLENGE FITNESS PARTY

The Buffalo Bills, Independent Health Foundation, and the American Heart Association united Dec. 16 to host the Play 60 Challenge Fitness Party in the ADPRO Sports Training Center as 300 elementary school students from participating schools throughout Western New York learned the importance of physical activity from Bills players, including Dan Carpenter, C.J. Spiller and Jerry Hughes.

Keeping with the Bills and NFL's commitment to the Play 60 initiative, the event included a number of activities designed to encourage Buffalo-area students to be more engaged in physical activity. New this year, the challenge teamed with Independent Health Foundation's Fitness for Kids Challenge -- a program that challenges elementary schools in Western New York to increase their physical activity and make good nutrition choices.

Students in attendance already proved successful at playing 60, as everyone earned their invitation to the ADPRO Sports Training Center after completing the Play 60 Challenge and Fitness for Kids Challenge in their classrooms. At the event, children split up into groups and enjoyed various physical activity stations hosted by Bills players, including inflatable games and football-themed physical activity stations.

EAGLES DELIVER HOLIDAY GIFTS TO CCTC STUDENTS

As a way to spread some holiday cheer, Eagles players Mark Sanchez and Bennie Logan delivered gifts to the team's adopted classroom at Gilbert Spruance Elementary School on Dec. 22. The presents were purchased by Eagles employees as part of the organization's "Giving Tree.", the school is part of the Children's Crisis Treatment Center (CCTC), a dedicated non-profit agency that specializes in delivering behavioral health services to children and their families.

The Philadelphia Eagles Ed Block Courage House and CCTC addresses the impact of child abuse, neglect, traumatic events, and other challenges to early childhood development, and assists children in reaching their full potential within their homes, community and society.

RAVENS HOST 10TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY HELPERS EVENT

RavensSteve Smith Sr. hosted the 10th annual Holiday Helpers event at the Target in Owings Mills (Baltimore County). Ravens players, cheerleaders and team mascot Poe joined Smith Sr. to serve as personal shoppers for 60 children. In addition to the shopping spree, the children received a pre-shopping pizza party donated by Papa John's, cake, a Ravens Jersey, Holiday Helpers t-shirt and a gift bag, including items from the Ravens and Target.

-- NFL Communications

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