The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Board of Directors approved a recommendation Tuesday to implement a new policy regarding return to play guidelines after a student-athlete has been diagnosed with a concussion.
The new policy reads: "In cases when an athlete is not cleared to return to play the same day as he/she is removed from a contest following a possible head injury (i.e. concussion), the athlete shall not return to play or practice until the athlete is evaluated by and receives written clearance from a licensed health care provider to return to play."
"This is an important policy for the health and safety of high school student-athletes in Illinois," said IHSA Associate Executive Director and Sports Medicine Chair Kurt Gibson. "The current concussion policy language only indicates what must be done for a student-athlete to return to a contest after being removed for a concussion or suspected concussion on the day of the contest. The new policy clarifies the action that must be taken for a student-athlete to return to play in the days, weeks or months that follow after they are diagnosed to have suffered a concussion."