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September 2011 REPORT
This has been a busy year in District III for governmental affairs. After many years of hard work, both Maryland and West Virginia are working on getting their practice acts up and running. This is a major step forward in getting universal recognition of the certified athletic trainer as the health care professionals we are. There may still be some challenges to getting these laws fully implemented, but the District and the NATA continue to support the MATA and the WVATA.
The West Virginia Athletic Trainers’ Association is also making strides in cleaning up some language in the Department of Education that allowed individuals working for secondary schools to be referred to as “certified athletic trainers” without having passed the BOC exam. This is a great achievement following the passage of their registration act.
The District of Columbia, Virginia and North Carolina have successfully passed and are working on getting their concussion laws fully implemented. These laws contain important safeguards to protect young athletes from concussion including educational programs, immediate removal from play when an athlete demonstrates signs/symptoms of concussion; require clearance from qualified healthcare professionals before a concussed athlete may return to play and emergency action plans.
The South Carolina Athletic Trainers’ Association held another successful “Barbecue at the Blatt.” This is a well-attended luncheon held annually by the SCATA that allows them to interact with and educate legislators and their staffs about athletic trainers and athletic training.
None of these successes are possible without the active participation of our membership and we all of the state leaders thank their members for lending assistance when needed.
Rep. Folwell and Governor Perdue “Bill sponsor and Speaker Pro-Tem Dale Folwell talks about the Gfeller-Waller Concussion Awareness act just before Governor Beverly Purdue signs the bill into law.”
Gfeller-Waller Families “The bill was named after Matthew Gfeller (parents and sister on the right) and Jaquan Waller (nephew, brother and sister-in-law on the left), 2 young football
players that died in 2008 following traumatic brain injuries while playing in games.”