Concussions in Youth Athletes - Arkansas
The Arkansas law is found at §6-18-708 and §6-18-710 of the Arkansas Code (A.C.A. Section 6-18-708 and Section 6-18-710) under the Education Law.
Arkansas law at §6-18-708 requires public school districts to develop procedures concerning certain health conditions, including concussions, that a student athlete my encounter during athletic training and physical activities. Any person employed as an athletic coach is required to complete training every 3 years regarding health conditions identified in the statute including concussions. Section 6-18-710 defines “youth athletic activity” as an organized athletic activity involving participants engaging in athletic games, competition or practice against or in preparation for an organized athletic game or competition against another team, club or entity in which a majority of those participating at under 19 years of age. The Arkansas Department of Health is required to develop protocols to protect all youth athletes engaged in youth athletic activities in Arkansas. Guidelines shall include information and forms to coaches, youth athletes and parents which inform and educate regarding the nature and risk of concussions and head injuries and continuing to play after a concussion or head injury. Prior to engaging in a youth athletic activity, an information sheet must be distributed to each person who intends to participate in the youth athletic activity and be signed by the youth athlete and the parent or guardian if the participant is under eighteen (18) years of age. A youth athlete suspected of sustaining a concussion shall be removed from the game, activity or practice at that time and shall not return to play until evaluation by a health care provider trained in the evaluation and management of concussions and receiving written clearance to return to play.
Title 6 (Education) of the Arkansas Code, Section 6-18-708 and Section 6-18-710 are currently available online at:
http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/arcode/ (select “natural language and full-text of source documents, type in concussion, and then search).
The following websites offer additional information regarding Arkansas concussion law:http://www.ahsaa.org/activity/73/sports-medicine