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NFHS Helps Pilot Telemedicine Program for Diagnosing Concussions

By NFHS on September 15, 2015 blog Print

Several years ago, the NFHS added language to all its rules books that required a player suspected of a concussion to be cleared to play by an appropriate health-care professional. Now, the growing use of telemedicine allows for a health-care professional to evaluate a player remotely to determine proper care for a suspected concussion.

The NFHS is participating in a pilot program at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) that will allow up to 11 schools to have access to a health-care professional through telemedicine during Friday night football games.

Some description

Elizabeth Joseph, of University of Mississippi Medical Center presents at the NFHS Section 3 meeting.

At the NFHS Section 3 meeting in Biloxi, Mississippi, this week, UMMC Telehealth Project Manager Elizabeth Joseph presented the program to NFHS membership.

When an incident occurs during a game, a trained individual at the school has been directed to move the player to a quiet location and get some baseline information required for an assessment, UMMC’s Joseph said. The baseline info is submitted electronically and goes into a virtual “waiting room.” UMMC telehealth operators then contact the physician, who joins in for the video consult.

Data will be collected on how effective and efficient the program is. It will then be determined if the practice can be expanded to more states and schools. Other states, such as Michigan and Washington, are also exploring the use of telemedicine for concussion diagnosis.

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