An Athlete’s Recovery

This month, our featured newsletter story was about Carlos, a Summit County resident broke his neck while playing high school football.  Despite the quick response of his coach and athletic trainer, his shattered C4 and C5 vertebrae left him initially paralyzed from the neck down.  Carlos took his recovery of his incomplete quadriplegia into his own hands and battled the odds.  With the help and support of family and physicians, he participated in extensive physical therapy.  Carlos claims the turning point was discovering outdoor recreational therapy, and says “its up to you to search it out…and I recovered tremendously considering how serious the injury is.”  We know that decisions about your health care are too important to be left solely to others.  Fortunately, Carlos was able to navigate the system successfully and get the care he needed.  Would you know know the steps to take if a friend or family member was injured?  Does your athlete have adequate insurance?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that during the 2005-2006 school year, more than 1 out of 3 of the 4.2-million adolescents participating in high school sports sustained injuries.  On January 1, 2012, the “Jake Snakenberg Youth Sports Concussion Act” went into effect, a law that requires coaches receive education about concussion and implements restrictions on athletes suspected of having suffered from a concussion.  We applaud Colorado for taking steps to protect its athletes.  We know that Coloradans have always worked together to tackle tough problems; health care is no different.

It only takes a small act to make a big difference. Please talk to your local coaches, athletes, and parents about the new concussion law and help us continue the conversation about health in Colorado.

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