Chapter 237

2011 -- H 5440 SUBSTITUTE A

Enacted 07/09/11





     Introduced By: Representatives Gallison, McNamara, Serpa, Edwards, and Morrison

     Date Introduced: February 16, 2011


It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:


     SECTION 1. Section 16-91-2 and 16-91-3 of the General Laws in Chapter 16-91 entitled

"School and Youth Programs Concussion Act" are hereby amended to read as follows:


     16-91-2. Definitions. -- (a) For the purpose of this section, the term "youth sports

programs" means any program organized for recreational and/or athletic competition purposes by

any school district or by any school participating in Rhode Island Interscholastic League

Competition, and whose participants are nineteen (19) years of age or younger.


     16-91-3. School district's guidelines to be developed and implemented. -- (a) The

department of education and the department of health shall work in concert with the Rhode Island

interscholastic league Interscholastic League to develop and promulgate guidelines to inform and

educate coaches, youth athletes, and their parents and/or guardians of the nature and risk of

concussion and head injury including continuing to play after concussion or head injury. A

concussion and head injury information sheet shall be signed and returned by the youth athlete

and the athlete's parent and/or guardian prior to the youth athlete's return to practice or


      (b) School districts are required to use training materials made available by the United

States Center for Disease Control and Prevention entitled "Heads Up: Concussion in the High

School Sports/Concussion in Youth Sports" and any updates or amendments thereto, or training

materials substantively and substantially similar thereto. The department of education shall post

training materials made available by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention on its

website. All coaches, trainers, and volunteers involved in a youth sport or activity covered by this

chapter must complete a training course and a refresher course annually thereafter in concussions

and traumatic brain injuries. Training may consist of videos, classes, and any other generally

accepted mode and medium of providing information. School districts are encouraged to have

school nurses complete a training course in concussions and traumatic brain injuries.

      (c) School districts are encouraged to have all student athletes perform baseline or

"impact" neuropsychological tested testing, computerized or otherwise prior to the start of

every sport season. Parents and/or guardians shall be provided with information as to the risk of

concussion and/or traumatic brain injuries prior to the start of every sport season and they shall

sign an acknowledgement as to their receipt of such information.

      (d) A youth athlete who is suspected of sustaining a concussion or head injury in a

practice or game shall be removed from competition at that time.

      (e) A youth athlete, who has been removed from play, may not return to play until the

athlete is evaluated by a licensed physician who may consult with an athletic trainer, all of whom

shall be trained in the evaluation and management of concussions. and until the The athlete

receives must receive written clearance to return to play from that licensed physician.

      (f) All school districts are encouraged to have an athletic trainer or similarly trained

person at all recreational and athletic events addressed by this statute.


     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.



LC01278/SUB A/3