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Concussions in Youth Athletes - Rhode Island

Rhode Island

The Rhode Island law can be found at section 16-91-1 through 16-91-4 of the Rhode Island Code, under the education title. (R. I. Gen. Laws §§ 16-91-1 through 16-91-4)

Rhode Island law requires the Departments of Education and Health to work with the Rhode Island Interscholastic League to develop guidelines and information on concussions. It requires a concussion information sheet be signed by the youth athlete and a parent/guardian and returned prior to any participation in an athletic activity by a youth athlete. It also requires that school districts make concussion training available and requires all coaches/volunteers to undergo a training program annually. A youth athlete suspected of sustaining a concussion is to be removed from the activity at that time and may not return to the activity until evaluated by a licensed physician trained in evaluation and management of concussions and given written clearance. The law defines youth sports program as any program organized for recreational and/or athletic competition purposes by any school district or by any school participating in the Rhode Island Interscholastic League and whose participants are 19 years of age or younger. All coaches, volunteers, and school nurses are required to complete a training course and annual refresher for concussions and traumatic brain injuries.

Section 16-91-4 provides that all other youth sports programs whose participant are 19 years of age and younger not addressed by the act are encouraged to follow the act’s guidance.

The official versions of these sections are currently available online at:

http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/statutes/title16/16-91/16-91-1.htm

http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/statutes/title16/16-91/16-91-2.htm
http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/statutes/title16/16-91/16-91-3.htm
http://www.rilin.state.ri.us/statutes/title16/16-91/16-91-4.htm

The following websites offer additional information regarding Rhode Island concussion law:

http://www.thriveri.org/moreinfo/whats_new.html
http://www.riil.org/index.php/resources/concussion-management