POSTED: August 5th 2014
InDepth

Sports Medicine: Concussions, risk management and arbitrations all up for discussion on Buckner Sports Law webinar

LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) Tomorrow the Buckner Sports Law Firm will host a webinar on some of the most current issues in sports, namely managing risk, internal investigations and arbitrations.

The webinar will be moderated by Michael Buckner, shareholder of the firm, and will feature as speakers Timothy Neal, sports medicine specialist for Buckner who has also served on the NCAA Student-Athlete Mental Health Task Force, and Lori Williams, senior counsel of Buckner with a background in intercollegiate athletics, risk management and higher education law.

The intricate legal perspective of dealing with sports medicine affects all walks of the sports environment whether professional, collegiate, amateur or Olympic.

First, the topics to be covered will identify and offer strategies to address risk management issues that are prevalent in sports medicine.

Second, the program will also discuss techniques to investigate allegations and prepare to defend decision making through mediation and arbitration and other proceedings that concern sports medicine related issues.  

Michael Buckner took a moment to speak to SportsFeatures.com about some of the points that will be highlighted in the webinar and what value that sports organizations can glean from the useful information.

Q) What kind of risk management issues in sports medicine will be discussed and what are a couple of problems that you will talk about?

MB)   The issues being discussed are concussions, return to play decisions, confidentiality, proper diagnosis and expectation of progress in recovery.

Q) Why do you think that the frequency of concussions and brain injury in sports are not getting the proper attention they deserve in the media?

MB)   The frequency of concussions is truly unknown. More studies are being undertaken, principally by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) to get a handle on the frequency. 

Also, some athletes do not report their concussions despite education on long-term consequences. 

There are many more concussions out there than being reported.

Q) How can a sports organization do a better job of identifying and dealing with mental health issues?

MB) Organizations can provide better service for athletes’ psychological concerns by going to the National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA) Consensus Statement I chaired on this issue: Developing a Plan to Recognize and Refer Student Athletes with Psychological Concerns at the Collegiate Level.

This is the “gold standard” in developing a plan for education and planning to recognize and refer athletes into an effective mental health care system. Another NATA Consensus Statement on the same topic for secondary school student athletes will be coming out in the fall.

Also, talking with subject matter experts on this topic like Tim Neal can shed light on what to do to develop this plan.

Q) What do you think the best take away advice from the webinar will be?

MB) Best advice is that there is much risk exposure in sports medicine. Preparing to examine and mitigate risk exposure through the use of experienced professionals providing guidance on the myriad of issues is the take away advice to this webinar.

Better to spend funds up front proactively to address potential issues than spending much more in defense and the negative press of a lawsuit.


Keywords · Buckner Sports Law · Sports medicine · risk management · Tim Neal · Lori Williams


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Laura Walden ()


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